Badger caught burying a cow in Utah

Badger caught burying a cow in Utah

Cameras set up in the Great Basin Desert of Utah captured a badger burying an entire cow by itself, and he buried carcass was able to sustain the short-legged omnivore for months. A team of biologists from the University of Utah had scattered the carcasses of seven calves in the area to study the behavior of scavengers. Around a week later, when researcher Evan Buechley revisited the area to check the carcasses, he was disappointed to find that one of the carcasses was missing.

Researchers thought that a coyote or mountain lion might have run off with the carcass. But Buechley noticed that the earth where he had left the carcass was disturbed. Then he checked video captured by cameras in detail. He was surprised to find that a badger had spent five days to bury the fifty-pound carcass.

In a press release, he noted, “I thought ‘Oh, well we’ve lost one after a week.’” But then he noticed that the ground where the carcass had been laid was disturbed. “Right on the spot I downloaded the photos,” he said, “We didn’t go out to study badgers specifically, but the badger declared itself to us.”

Buechley explained that the badger buried the carcass to protect it from other animals and ensure availability of food for many days to come.

Researchers reported the unprecedented behavior of badgers in the most recent edition of the journal West North American Naturalist.