June 23-05

Past-E-Mail: Cam Notes - 2005: June: June 23-05
Badger encounter    ...scroll down to share comments
Photo by Z-Man

Mary Drew at Pasty Central on Thursday, June 23, 2005 - 07:20 am:

When looking through the Pasty Cam Gallery, you can always be sure to find something interesting and unusual in Z-Man's album. Take this creature for instance. From what I've heard about these critters, they can be pretty vicious. Of course Z-Man doesn't only provide us with wonderful photos, he usually embellishes them for me, with the story behind the photo too. His tale of the Badger goes like this:

"They are quite rare to be seen in the U.P. I will tell you a little story. They are as mean as a Tasmanian Devil, just ask my car, it was attacked for over four minutes by two of these. They just would not stop until I shut the engine off. I think they thought they killed my car. Did I fool them or what? Ha, ha! I found it quite funny about them trying to take on a Ford…"Built Ford Tuff". I was thinking about getting out at first and changed my mind after they attacked. I even rolled up the windows for fear of one jumping in."

Thanks once again, Z-Man, for risking life and limb, to bring the U.P. up close and personal for us all.

If just a picture from the U.P. isn't enough for you, then it's time to make plans to be here in person for Pasty Fest 2005, on July 2nd, in Calumet. Only 9 more days and the festivities will begin with a parade at 10:00 a.m. and progress throughout the day with fun for all ages. No need to worry about lunch, if you're one of the first 400 to get in line with the coupon from the Finnish American Reporter or Gazette, you'll get a free pasty for your efforts!
By smf in troll land on Thursday, June 23, 2005 - 07:28 am:

What a story! Saw some young ones playing at the zoo last week & they were so cute that it's hard to believe they can be so vicious, but hearing about them over the years and reading Z-Man's story convinces me.

By julie b., MI on Thursday, June 23, 2005 - 07:33 am:

My Dad was a builder and back in the day they had a garage/warehouse with kegs of nails. They would grab a handful of nails from the kegs to put in their nail aprons. One day he went in and it was bright outside so he didn't turn on the light - before his eyes adjusted to the dark he went to grab a handful of nails but something told him not to. He stopped and as his eyes adjusted he looked in to see a badger in the keg! If he had gone ahead we might have been calling him "Lefty" from then on!

By maijaMI on Thursday, June 23, 2005 - 07:42 am:

It isn't only badgers that have a problem with cars. My bro was at Great Sand Beach and a wolf that was being raised to be released into the wilderness was out with his owner. Cocoa inside the car was barking her head off. The wolf went nuts, decked the owner till he could get free. A friend told me that the animal probably saw the whole car as an animal threat. The wolf ran into the woods. My bro spoke to the owner and he seemed not concerned thinking the wolf would return. Friend said it was probably a malamute, but I read that someone in the area is raising wolves. Perhaps someone checking in here knows more.

By maijaMI on Thursday, June 23, 2005 - 07:43 am:

oops: Great Sand Bay

By Skylar in WI on Thursday, June 23, 2005 - 07:44 am:

What the heck is Bucky badger doing in the U.P.? That's a long way to walk from Madison! Later, Skylar.

By Steve in IA on Thursday, June 23, 2005 - 08:04 am:

Great Story. These are seen quite often in Iowa. They make big holes in fields and road ditches digging for rodents. Bad tempered is putting it mildly. Years ago as a teen I discovered one when I was out hunting. He was busy burrowing with just his behind sticking out of the ground and was oblivious to the rest of the world. I watched him for awhile and then thought I would give him a little nudge from behind just to see he would do. I wasn't scared, after all, I had a gun. Bad Idea. (teenagers don't always think things through) He came boiling out of that hole like a miniature grizzly bear. I discovered you can't run for your life and shoot at the same time. He chased me about a hundred yards before he gave up. They can run pretty fast when they're mad. Another of life's lessons learned - don't mess with Badgers.

By Tbel, MN on Thursday, June 23, 2005 - 08:20 am:

I have a friend here in rochester,mn that grew up in Iowa. When he was in Highschool he trapped muskrat. One day he found a badger in one of his traps but didn't know what it was. He proceeded to kill it by hitting it over the head with the biggest stick he could find. He now has it mounted and in his rec room. He says had he been smart enough to know what it was he wouldn't have messed with it

By sur5er on Thursday, June 23, 2005 - 08:34 am:

Now this is one furry creature that I have been fortunate enough not to encounter in the wilds. When we camped in northern Michigan, I remember my father issuing warnings about badgers, to us kiddies. I still remember the part in the warning about badgers being able to turn their heads completely around. Don't know if it's true or not, but it sure scared me.
I think Steve in IA's description of badgers being minature grizzly bears is a very accurate discription of thier temperment. :)
Julieb, I am still laughing about almost Lefty..too funny.

By Dave - Corryton,TN. on Thursday, June 23, 2005 - 08:53 am:

Not a good idea to badger a Badger.They don't take to badering very well.

By Dave - Corryton,TN. on Thursday, June 23, 2005 - 09:11 am:

Sorry,they don't take to being badgered very well.

By Margaret, Amarillo TX on Thursday, June 23, 2005 - 10:16 am:

Wow! All the time I lived up north, we never encountered the little master. Looks like rain offf Sharon's deck.

By SharonS on Thursday, June 23, 2005 - 10:50 am:

We had a very nice thunderstorm starting about 6:30 this morning...lots of noise and lots of rain. It's humid enough that it hasn't dried up yet, in spite of the wind.

Much as I'd love to see one, I hope the badgers haven't made it to the tip of Keweenaw yet. It sounds like you don't need to bother them - just being there can set them off.

By Janie, Ia. on Thursday, June 23, 2005 - 11:12 am:

Always know them as "BADger"

By Alex Tiensivu, Georgia on Thursday, June 23, 2005 - 11:22 am:

They are said to be the most deadly animals on Earth and will take down an elephant in minutes! It's so hard to believe, but they are supposed to be the meanest!

By SDC,Ferndale, MI on Thursday, June 23, 2005 - 11:45 am:

Back in the late 1960's down here in troll land just as they were starting to developing further out in the country, my brother-in-law's brother had a farm and he was plowing his field when he saw 2 baby badgers. The mother had been killed. He put them in a box and gave them to my b-in-law to hand feed them until they could be given to the Detroit Zoo. We have pictures of us holding them but not too long because their "mean genes" were just starting to kick in. The Zoo said it was unbelievable that they were found down state in rual Oakland County.

By Lowell Mo. on Thursday, June 23, 2005 - 03:15 pm:

Nice Picture. Have seen a few of them here in Missouri. If you want to see how mean a Badger is just sic your dog on one. I seen a article one time about how fast they can dig. Don't remember the figures but it was fast.

By dr. doolittle, mi on Thursday, June 23, 2005 - 03:30 pm:

Badger is the common name. Badgers belong to the family Mustelidae which includes ferrets, weasels, otters. It is a carnivore. There are 9 species of badger the Taxidinae is the American Badger. The name is possibly derived from the word badge, on account of the marks on the head. The lower jaw is articulated to the upper, so that dislocation of the jaw is all but impossible. This enables the badger to maintain its hold with the utmost tenacity. A group of badgers is a "cete".
Some people thought that badgers could bring bad luck. This rhyme dates from about 200 years ago: “Should one hear a badger call, And then an ullot cry, Make thy peace with God, good soul, For thou shall shortly die. So, according to this bit of folklore, if you hear a badger call, then hear an "Ullot" (an owl) hoot, you are not long for this world!” see wikipedia

By The Z-Man on Thursday, June 23, 2005 - 03:58 pm:

Good thing I did not hear no Owls........Hmmmm

By beemer, the crossing on Thursday, June 23, 2005 - 05:27 pm:

beware the 4-legged vermin

By A true trol on Thursday, June 23, 2005 - 05:54 pm:

Send 'em back where they belong! Cheeseheads can keep 'em.

By kosk in Toronto on Thursday, June 23, 2005 - 06:31 pm:

I was surprised to see a badger on a back
road near Ishpeming the other summer.
Another year I saw a weasel on the same
road. Usually it's rabbits.

By Bob, New Mexico on Thursday, June 23, 2005 - 07:24 pm:

Has anyone ever seen a wolverine?

By Paul in Illinois on Thursday, June 23, 2005 - 07:34 pm:

I encountered a Badger who had a den or hole in the poorrock piles at the North American Mine right off the Cliff Drive. This was back in the early '60's. Fortunately I saw her/him before I got too close. The nasty creature was more than willing to take up the challenge and proceeded to bounce up and down while making horrible noises. Since the badger was on its way TOWARDS me, I made a hasty retreat until he/she content to stomp around the rock pile expressing extreme annoyance.
Through the years I have met several bears, a couple of coyotes, and a fox while walking the Keweenaw woods. None of them were anywhere near as beligerant as that Badger.
One thing to always remember in the woods and particularly around old mines, is to look ahead and watch the ground. It could save you from stepping in a hole or on a Badger.
By the way True Trol, the Wolverine is the Badger's really mean cousin.

By Therese from just below the bridge on Thursday, June 23, 2005 - 07:40 pm:

My uncle cared for a wolverine mascot many years ago when he was at U-M; he said it never warmed to him. The only wild wolverine in Michigan in living memory was photographed last year in the Thumb area, thought to have crossed the ice from our neighbors to the north. I've never seen a badger and was doubting that they lived in Michigan; am glad to have been wrong.

By BB from Sunrise Side on Thursday, June 23, 2005 - 08:02 pm:

Looks like he could also be related to the
skunk family with that stripe on his head!

By FLYIN my MOONEY on Thursday, June 23, 2005 - 08:05 pm:

Only critter meaner than a badger is a Wolverine........and I don't mean the pansies that go to school in Ann Arbor......(Tech grad)

By Dr. Nat in Nevada on Thursday, June 23, 2005 - 08:14 pm:

Back when I was younger, I was up in Yellowstone helping my dad with some geology field work. I found this neat looking hole (OK, I'm not sure why it was any more interesting than any other hole, but it still grabbed my attention). Being an inquisitive (though not always wise) teenager, at the time it seemed like a good idea to stick my foot in the hole and see what was down there. Much to my surprise, I suddenly heard growling and snarling unlike anything else I'd ever heard and a tenacious, toothy animal grabbed a hold of much more than my attention. Apparently, a badger made that hole home and wasn't fond of a (future)geologist's big boot being stuffed into his living room. I'm very lucky I was wearing steel-toed boots. Anyway, the badger chomped on my boot, all the while making these ungodly noises. Finally he let go, and with a final snarl, stalked back into his hole. I decided to leave him alone and not go sticking my foot into any more holes. I've also been fond of badgers ever since. I think they're kinda cute, even if they do have a bit of a temper!

By Trish, WA on Thursday, June 23, 2005 - 09:19 pm:

This guy looks like Mr.Badger from Wind in the Willows.
He was a friendly badger, and opened his door to let Ratty
and Mole in when they were lost in the woods!

By Alex Tiensivu, Georgia on Thursday, June 23, 2005 - 11:00 pm:

A friendly badger? Hmmm... (Contemplating this!)

By Mary Ann, WY on Friday, June 24, 2005 - 12:52 am:

What a great photo! We were in Yellowstone in mid-May and were able to watch a mother with two young. They were surrounded by photographers. The mother was on the mound and every once in awhile the babies would come out, until one of the photorgraphers scared them and they all went back into their hole.

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