American Badger Update: The Attack of the Invasive Plant

An invasive species is a scientific term used to describe when something is growing or living where it doesn’t naturally belong. When invasive plants show up in places they don’t belong, they can cause other important plant species to die, by blocking their access to sunlight and water.

autumn olive, common buckthorn, multiflora rose, invasive species Ontario

Invasive species in Ontario

Animals can also have an effect on the speed at which invasive plants spread. Herbivores (animals and organisms that eat plants) don’t like feeding on invasive plants. With fewer animals eating them, invasive plant populations can spread really quickly.

Why Invasive plants and badgers just don’t get along

The type of invasive species growing in any given area has a real impact on what animals it attracts, which can spell trouble for predators like badgers. You see, American badgers like lots of variety in their diet, which means they like to hunt many different types of prey.

Start a campaign to protect the American badger

The problem is that badgers live in old agricultural fields, which are often crowded with invasive plants, shrubs and trees. Some examples of invasive species that are taking over badger habitat in Ontario are shrubs like the Autumn olive, Common buckthorn, and Mutifloral rose. Because these fields don’t have the same original variety of plants to attract lots of animals, American badgers have fewer animals to hunt.

New research also shows that some invading plants can cause the soil to change, which creates another problem for the American badgers. They like their ground to be well drained because it’s perfect for digging a burrow. Changes to the soil by invasive plants can make it more difficult for badgers to make a home in the ground.

american badger den

Help us get rid of those invaders!

We’re teaming up with Earth Rangers just like you to protect the American badger. Earth Rangers’ Bring Back the Wild™ campaigns will support research that will help us better understand how American badger populations are being affected by changes to their habitat.

restored American badger habitat

Restored American badger habitat

 

These campaigns will also help the Nature Conservancy of Canada remove invasive species that have taken over the badger’s territory in the Lake Erie region.

The Nature Conservancy of Canada is working to restore an area that was once used for agriculture, turning it into a perfect home for American badgers. In 2006/2007 a mixture of 70 species of native grasses, wildflowers, shrubs and trees were planted. In late August and September of 2012 invasive species like Autumn olive and Multifloral rose were removed from the 54-hectare site. This habitat improvement project is making a real difference for American badger populations and it’s also creating homes for snakes, birds, and other mammals.

 
 

Generously Supported By

ontario power generation

A Conservation Project With

Nature Conservancy of Canada

Earth Rangers is a non-profit organization that works to inspire and educate children about the environment. At EarthRangers.com kids can play games, discover amazing facts, meet animal ambassadors and fundraise to protect biodiversity.
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20 Comments

  1. New Bee
    Ranger56179574 says:

    hi everybody! I’m trying to raise $500 for the polar bear.

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  2. New Bee
    Ranger56179579 says:

    hi rangers! i’m trying to raise $500 for the american badger! :)

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    Rating: 5.0/5 (1 vote cast)
  3. New Bee
    Ranger56179632 says:

    Hi wildlife rangers! My name is Omar and my goal is to raise $1000 for the wood thrush.

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    Rating: 5.0/5 (1 vote cast)
  4. New Bee
    Ranger56179632 says:

    I am kidding. I’m trying to raise $500 for the wood thrush. From: Omar

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    Rating: 0.0/5 (0 votes cast)
  5. Green Bean
    Ranger56181046 says:

    It’s so sad the badgers are being forced out of their homes :.(

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  6. Toadstool
    pinemartin1015 says:

    Hey earth rangers I am trying to raise $1000 for the polar bear

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    Rating: 5.0/5 (1 vote cast)
  7. Green Bean
    Yellowbelt says:

    Poor american badger :.( Its so sad that just a few types of invasive plants can change the population of it.

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  8. New Bee
    Ranger56187545 says:

    Hi im trying to raise 50$ for the american badger

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    Rating: 5.0/5 (1 vote cast)
  9. Tree Hugger
    KirtlandsWarbler says:

    It’s too bad that invasive plants are causing such a big problem for badgers.

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  10. Tree Hugger
    KirtlandsWarbler says:

    I’m also trying to raise $50 to help the American Badger. I hope you meet your goal Ranger56187545!!!

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