Why have badgers suddenly come into my garden?
The chances are that something has changed. Perhaps the weather has suddenly got wetter or drier, making some insects and other food such as slugs or worms easier to catch. Perhaps you aren’t feeding the badgers but are feeding birds or other wildlife and the badgers have come to join in the feast after dark. Often (about 95% of the time) badger damage, particularly to lawns, stops just as quickly as it starts.
What can I do about It?
The badgers, of course, are protected, as are their setts, and, anyway, interfering with either rarely achieves much apart from the risk of prosecution. There are several remedies for badger damage to lawns and gardens. In order of expense (cheapest first) they are:
For lawn damage, when you do your regular cut, trying altering the height of cut in various parts of the lawn. This can sometimes make it impossible for badgers to easily find their prey, so they go elsewhere.
Sometimes, leaving the garden chairs and table out in different places each night will worry badgers enough that they will leave.
If you know what the problem is (e.g. leatherjackets,), the answer may lie in an insecticide, applied to the lawn as per manufacturer’s instructions.
Try putting an upside - down bucket on the lawn at night with a cheap radio underneath set to Radio 1 or 2 at low volume (so as not to disturb the neighbours!) and move the whole lot around every night or two. This sometimes works wonders!
If that fails, try putting some old pie dishes and other bits of silver foil, or even old CDs onto some string, and hang the string from the end of a garden cane. Put several of these contraptions around the garden and move them every night or two. The movement and reflected light from the foil or discs can make a badger nervous so that it goes elsewhere. Childrens’ seaside windmills can also be used.
There are other methods of deterrence such as electric fences but such fencing is not appropriate if the batteries or charging units are likely to be stolen.
What if none of these methods work?
The only really sure way of keeping badgers out of the garden is to have a fencing company come in and erect a badger – proof fence around the perimeter. Several companies make special wire fencing which is dug into the ground and then fixed to fence posts. It is expensive, but will last for years, and often the cost is cheaper if several neighbours get together to pay for the work. Putting bricks and slabs into the holes under the fence where the badgers come into the garden won’t stop a determined animal.