I started photographing and studying badgers in 1971 – a time when there were no programs about them on TV, and the only book that I could find that gave any detail about these fascinating animals was the seminal work by Ernest Neal, “The Badger”, published in 1948 in the New Naturalist series.
My largely nocturnal activities provided a suitably eccentric and highly relaxing counterpoint to the rest of my life, and created a demand – for a while – for my services as a guest speaker with slide show on the subject of badgers with many organisations around Cheshire. For a long time, too, I seemed to have one of the most comprehensive collections of badger photographs in the country, judging by the number of publications in which they appeared.
The rise of the Internet provided me with another absorbing focus for my interest, and for a couple of years – in 1996 and 1997 – I posted an account of my badger-watching activities in the alt.animals.badgers and rec.animals.wildlife newsgroups on Usenet – if that word is unfamiliar to you, look up the history of the Internet! When the world-wide web came along and people started writing personal websites, I archived my postings on a section of my website, illustrated by graphics produced by digitising frames from video which I had taken during my badger-watching. This was a period when I dabbled in video and still photography took a back seat for a while.
As I still get an occasional email showing appreciation for these postings, I have now moved them to this blog where they may be more visible – see the category “Badgers”.
Yes, I know that these postings are dated with a time when blogging had not been invented, but the dates are when each post originally appeared on Usenet! I hope that they may continue to give pleasure, and inspire others to go out and get to know their own badgerly neighbours – and possibly other creatures who share our planet with us.