Road safety campaign launched at a critical time for badgers and their cubs

Chris Packham and the AA join Badger Trust’s call to ‘Give Badgers a Brake’ on Britain’s roads at peak cub-rearing season

Many people were moved by wildlife TV presenter and conservationist Chris Packham’s recent heartbreaking story of Golden Sow, a pregnant badger killed by a motorist. Badger Trust is campaigning to prevent further road traffic tragedies at a critical time for badgers and their cubs. Sadly, Golden Sow did not give birth but now cubs are being born across the country and that means it’s peak time for the risk of cubs being orphaned, as badger sows roam further to get more food and are at an increased risk of being killed in road traffic collisions.

“Let’s prevent tragedies like Golden Sow”

Chris Packham said:

‘I was moved by the amount of people who reached out to me when Golden Sow was killed. Let’s try and prevent more tragedies like Golden Sow and keep those cubs safe. That’s why I want more road signs and other measures to alert motorists to badgers and other wildlife on our roads, especially at night. It’s a tragedy that so many badgers are killed like this each year, and double the tragedy if it’s a female with cubs.

‘So please give badgers a brake, report badger deaths to Badger Trust and be careful on the roads.’

Golden Sow erythristic badger in green woodland image © Chris Packham Give Badgers a Brake Badger Trust campaign
Golden Sow erythristic badger in green woodland © Chris Packham

Peter Hambly Executive Director of Badger Trust added:

‘We urge drivers to slow down on the roads and, if the worst happens, to urgently report badger accidents or dead badgers they see to Badger Trust and their local badger group. The badger may still be alive and may need urgent medical help. If it’s already dead and it’s a lactating female, our local badger groups may be able to locate the sett and support the rescue of orphaned cubs – that’s vital at this time of year.’

The AA joins call for more road signs and more caution on roads

The AA joined the call for more road signs and for motorists to be careful on roads with wildlife, especially at night on rural roads:

Jack Cousens, the AA’s Head of Roads Policy commented:

‘We support the need for more road signs to warn drivers that wildlife might be on the roads in certain areas. Other than the distress that comes with hitting and usually killing such a beautiful and iconic symbol of British wildlife, there are road safety concerns with drivers making sudden evasive manoeuvres and the collision damage to vehicles.

‘Wildlife road signs are placed where there is clear evidence of a road danger. They should trigger driver awareness where there is a particular risk of collision.’

‘Animals have a habit of springing out of nowhere, and drivers need to give themselves plenty of time to react safely. Warning signs will definitely help.’

Badger Trust, supported by the AA, has written to the Department of Transport to find out why applications for erecting new warning signs for smaller wildlife have been unsuccessful and urging them to allow more in places of high wildlife casualties. Badgers are one of the most commonly killed creatures on Britain’s roads due to their instinctual desire to follow the same travel path, even after a road has been created.

Hambly added:

‘Badgers are following paths they have followed for hundreds of years. Roads built across these an