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Foods of American Badgers in West-central Minnesota and Southeastern North Dakota During the Duck Nesting Season

Marsha A. Sovada1, Jon M. Roaldson2 and Alan B. Sargeant3

Northern Prairie Wildlife Research Center,
U.S. Geological Survey,
Jamestown, North Dakota 58401


Abstract: Although the American badger (Taxidea taxus) is common in grasslands and preys on a wide diversity of foods including birds, little is known about badger diet in areas where nesting ducks are common. Small mammals, primarily Muridae and Geomyidae, were the most common food items in the diet of badgers collected from west-central Minnesota and southeastern North Dakota during April-July 1987 through 1990, based on analysis of gastrointestinal tracts of 47 adult (≥1-y-old) and 5 juvenile (<6-mo-old) badgers. Remains of mammals occurred in 98% of samples from adult badgers. Small quantities of insects were found in 40% of adult samples. Bird remains were in 32% of adult samples, most birds identified as Anatidae; ducks or ducklings occurred in 27% and duck eggs in 60% of those samples. Remains of reptiles, amphibians and mollusks were present, but were less common than other foods. Insects and bird eggs were more common during spring (April-May) than summer (June-July). Birds were more frequent in diets of adults than juvenile badgers.
This resource is based on the following source (Northern Prairie Publication 1066):
Sovada, Marsha. A., Jon. M. Roaldson, and Alan. B. Sargeant.  1999.  Foods 
     of american badgers in west-central Minnesota and southeastern North 
     Dakota during the duck nesting season.  American Midland Naturalist.  
     142(2):410-414.
This resource should be cited as:
Sovada, Marsha. A., Jon. M. Roaldson, and Alan. B. Sargeant.  1999.  Foods 
     of american badgers in west-central Minnesota and southeastern North 
     Dakota during the duck nesting season.  American Midland Naturalist.  
     142(2):410-414.  Jamestown, ND: Northern Prairie Wildlife Research Center 
     Online.  http://www.npwrc.usgs.gov/resource/mammals/ambad/index.htm 
     (Version 05JAN2000).

Table of Contents


1 Corresponding author: e-mail: marsha_sovada@usgs.gov
2 Present address: Ducks Unlimited, 3502 Franklin Ave., Bismarck, North Dakota 58501
3 Present address: 3161 Hwy 281 SE #4, Jamestown, North Dakota 58401
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