Indiana is home to a wide variety of wildlife, including mammals like deer, raccoons, rabbits, and skunks. Hoosiers can also expect to see the occasional coyote, bobcat, or even an armadillo. And if you're really lucky, you might even encounter one of Indiana's most uncommon critters - the American Badger.

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I was scrolling through the Indiana Wildlife Facebook page when I saw this picture shared by Johnny Bibb. I instantly recognized that the animal was a badger, but I assumed the picture was taken somewhere else, because there aren't any badgers in Indiana, right? Wrong.

Johnny Bibb/Indiana Wildlife Facebook page
Johnny Bibb/Indiana Wildlife Facebook page

Badgers might be uncommon in Indiana, but they are certainly here. Here's what the Indiana Department of Natural Resources (DNR) says about badgers in the Hoosier state...

Indiana is at the eastern edge of the badger’s geographic range. Badgers are more commonly found in the northern half of Indiana; however, they have now been reported from nearly 80 Indiana counties, including Posey County to the south. Currently, the most common type of badger sightings comes through reports of roadkill.

The number of sightings is understandably low because there are so few badgers in Indiana, coupled with the fact that they are nocturnal animals. Johnny was pretty fortunate to capture a picture of this badger in the middle of the day. So, I reckon you should also be on the lookout for badgers. In case you don't know what you're looking for, here are a few ways to identify an American Badger.

  • Low to the ground and stocky
  • About 15-30 pounds
  • Fur on the head is black with a centered white stripe from nose to neck
  • Fur on the back is grizzled black and brown, tipped in white

Indiana DNR officials admit that little is known about how many badgers live in Indiana, but that number has continued to grow over the past 50 years. If you see a badger, you are asked to report that sighting to the Indiana DNR which will hopefully allow them to get more accurate population numbers.

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