HONEY BADGER/Behaviour, Distribution, Habitat, Size, Weight, IUCN stetus



DESCRIPTION: A large, pied badger, the Honey Badger or Ratel has a broad streak of unwashed silver–grey from the crown to the base of the tail, with the underparts being deep brown or black. The upper parts are more buff or rust– brown in juveniles. The fur is short and coarse yet glossy. The head is broad, the snout small and the ears are flattened flaps, giving it a pugilist’s face. The tail is black with a pale tip. The forefeet are adapted for digging and have black claws that are larger than those on the hind feet. The females have two mammae. Both sexes look alike, although the males are significantly larger.

BEHAVIOUR: The Ratel is reputed to dig up graves – a local belief that is based on its scavenging habits. It is also a predator that feeds largely on flesh, supplemented by a vegetarian diet.

DISTRIBUTION: Ranges from the Himalayan foothills to southern India. Absent in Kerala and the North–East.

HABITAT: Hilly, stony, arid country, and dry and moist deciduous forests.

 Size: 60–77 cm

IUCN Status: Lower Risk


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