Photo 1. A fox (Photo taken by camera trap of P.I. Priroda)
THE MUTUALISTIC RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN FOXES AND BADGERS
During several months over the winter, the only photos captured by the camera trap we had set up in the area of Crni Vrh, not far from Platak, were those of foxes and badgers. The photos were taken almost daily, sometimes in intervals of only a few hours. Although these two wild animals belong to different families, they have very similar life styles. Both are predominantly nocturnal omnivores and live in dens. Badgers are very clean and tidy animals, and dig their own dens or setts, which consist of a large central chamber with a bed of moss, several exits and tunnels for ventilation, and a separate tunnel used as a latrine. Only rarely will foxes dig their own den. Instead, they prefer to use the abandoned dens of hares or badgers. There have often been cases where foxes live in the distant tunnels of active badger setts, sometimes in a mutualistic relationship, with the foxes leaving scraps of food for the badgers, and the badgers keeping the foxes’ part of the sett clean.
Photo 2. A badger (Photo taken by camera trap of P.I. Priroda)