ANIMAL-lovers can tune in to witness orphaned badgers being released back into the wild after they were rescued by a Warwickshire conservationist.
Channel 5 filmed the final release operation organised by Steve Hawkes from Warwickshire Badger Group for its show ‘Wild Animal Rescue’.
The Whitnash resident helped rescue 11 badger cubs from around the Midlands last spring.
The cubs were cared for by the Vale Wildlife Hospital in Worcestershire after they were found abandoned. The most common reason for stranded cubs is because the mother has been killed by traffic, or because of sett disruption often by developments.
The rescued badgers were introduced to old, unused setts to help them adapt to life in the wild.
Some of their bedding material from the wildlife hospital was put into the entrances to give the sett a familiar smell. The team also buried some of the food they had been eating to encourage them to dig for it and introduce them to the main staple in their diet – earth worms.
The show will air from today to Thursday 23, at 7pm, with the release expected to feature in the last episode.
Steve said: “I think it was very important that all of these young badger cubs should be given a second chance at living in the wild – especially as they were all unfortunately orphaned through no fault of their own.
“Thanks must go to all of the people who rescued them in the first place, and the care of the staff at The Vale Wildlife Hospital, without which none of this would have been possible.
“It was a pleasure and a privilege to be involved personally in something which I consider to be at the sharp end of our Warwickshire Badger Group conservation work.
“At the time of release these were all fit, healthy, and vibrant young badgers fully deserving of a new life back in the wild.”