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Rehabilitator's & Badger Enthusiast's Handbook by Andy Parr

Review
Content-Type Factual Book
Description A book which describes the methods by which badger cubs can be assessed to see whether they are suitable candidates to be returned quickly to their home sett; or whether long term rehabilitation to a rescue centre is a better option.
Summary

Over the past several decades, various authors have produced books which provide new and important information about badgers. Ernest Neal wrote several books based on the careful observation of badgers over many years. Hans Kruuk wrote another book based on his observation of badgers and their social structures; and their feeding patterns in different parts of Scotland. Chris Cheeseman added to the literature by adding lots of useful academic work on badgers (and disease) in an intensively studied collection of localised badger clans. Other scientists have also made their marks in textbooks and peer-reviewed science journals. On the face of things you might wonder whether there is any room for a new badger book; where so many people have published so much before. Andy Parr's book builds on his many years careful observation of badgers in the wild, and then on his work as wildlife release manager of the UK's best badger rehabilitation and release charity.

In terms of badger rescue, it is very tempting to simply see a badger cub and decide that the "best" thing to do is to take it into the care of a rescue centre; where it can be looked after and, one assumes, released some days, weeks or months later. The very presence of an animal rescue centre probably makes people think that it "must" be the best thing to do to take a badger ito care. Also, with badgers being such a popular and keynote wild mammal, there is every incentive for people to "want" to rescue a badger without making any objective assessment as to what is best for the badger.

Andy's book starts with a discussion of the research involved in his work; and goes through many of the practical issues which are essential (badger experience, local knowledge, equipment needed, etc). It then goes through a series of badger rescues, discussing each one in detail; going through each of the relevant circumstances, discussing the pros and cons of what happened, and the human and badger thought processes involved. Such an approach provides the reader with a real basis for learning and improving how they deal with badger rescues. Because Andy has worked with badgers for so long, there are enough examples to be pretty sure that the reader will be able to find practical and useful advice in abundance.

Whilst this book is vital for the experienced badger rescuer; it also gives critically important information which the public can relate to as well. Various sections go through checklists such as how to gather accurate information about locations, setts, cubs, as well as unique photos to help the reader determine the accurate age of a badger cub. Of course, the age of a badger cub has enormous relevance to how it may be returned to its home sett or taken into long term rehabilitation. Whereas snippets of information about badger care is available on-line; this book collects most of it together in one easy-to-use reference book.

The book uniquely addresses the problems of deciding whether badger should be quickly returned to the wild or taken in to long term rehabilitation at a rescue centre. In the past it was easy to assume that all badger cubs needed to be rescued and rehabbed. Rehab may not be the best solution for every badger cub. Andy shows that, in very many cases, the best outcome for badger cubs may well be to a plan for and attempt a careful release at the home sett as soon as humanely possible. There is so much useful information in this book; it should sit on the bookshelf alongside the best of the books by other badger experts. So far as badgers are concerned, it is THE essential book for all badger groups and wildlife rescue people.

Written by Andy Parr
Illustrated by Andy Parr
Photographs by Andy Parr
Written in 2016
Last Revised in 2016
Size 210 mm by 148 mm (height by width)
Pages 106
ISBN 978-0-9956167-0-7
Publisher Lancashire Badger Group
Copyright Owner Andy Parr
In Print? Still in Print
Review Date 8 November 2016
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