The Secret Life of the European Badger

Released in Spring 1999

A film by Robert Luques

Produced by Paul Cadieux and Michel Gauriat

Despite indications that it is disappearing, the European badger remains one of Europe's most discreet animals. This burrowing animal, of the Weasel family Mustelidae, is largely unknown to the general public and even to certain people commonly familiar with nature who rely on hearsay to discuss the badger. This foul smelling animal, hence the Mustelidae family, has the reputation of a savage, bloodthirsty beast which has preceded it since the dark ages. But is this an accurate portrayal of this relatively calm omnivore with very pronounced social behavior? Being extremely difficult to film in its natural habitat, the European badger has been the subject of very few documentaries. This complete study permits the presentation of actual facts and not the falsities that have been associated with the badger, such as it being a frightening creature. At the beginning of spring new generations of badger's are born. They have lived in the burrow for two months before coming out for the first time this evening. It is through this family unit and the passing season's with which we will be able to better understand this Mustelidae with its very peculiar habits. Where do they live? What do they eat? How many litters do they have per year? How do they build multi-level fortress they hibernate? A discussion will take place with regards to the American badger, which is also a member of the Mustelidae family. However, the American badger has very different habits and behavior patterns than that of the European badger. The American badger behaves in a very reclusive manner whereas the European badger is the only Mustelidae that is found to live in a family group or clan.movement.