While some studies have been made of honey badgers in captivity, there has been little research conducted on badgers in the wild.

See the most recent IUCN RED LIST conservation assessment of the honey badger here
Begg, K., Begg, C. & Abramov, A. 2008. Mellivora capensis. In: IUCN 2011. IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2011.2.


Badger - Paternity

Begg et al Spatial organisation

Begg et al. Scentmarking

Diet paper

Begg et al Life history

Badgers & Beekeeper conflict 2001

Badgers & Beekeeper conflict 2002

Evolutionary history of weasel like carnivores Sato et al 2012

Relevant Books

  • Estes, R.H. 1991. The behaviour guide to African mammals. University of California Press, Berkeley, 611.
  • Kingdon, J., 1989. East African Mammals, Vol.3A, Carnivores. University of Chicago Press : 87-104
  • Neal, E., 1990. The Natural History of Badgers. Christopher Helm, London
  • Neal, E. & Cheeseman, C. 1996. Badgers. Poyser Natural History, London
  • Skinner, J. D. & Smithers R.H.N. 1990. The Mammals of the southern African subregion. University of Pretoria, Pretoria. 453-456

Popular articles

  • Begg K.S. & Begg C.M. 2000. Birds and badgers. Africa - Birds and Birding 5 (2):19.
  • Begg, C.M. & Begg K.S. 1997. Badger bonding. Africa: Environment & Wildlife 5:26-27
  • Begg, C.M. & Begg, K.S.2003. The Honey Badger: Conserving the most fearless animal in the world.. Science in Africa
  • Begg, K. & Begg, C. 2000. Honey badgers the mystery nest predator? Hornbill: 35-36.
  • Begg, K.S & Begg, C.M. 2000. So taai soos 'n ratel. SA Wild & Jag: November: 19.
  • Begg, K.S & Begg, C.M. 2000. Honey badger research. Africa - Environment & Wildlife 8 (2).
  • Begg, K.S. & Begg C.M. 1997. Badger antics in the Kalahari. Custos November: 8-10
  • Begg, K.S. & Begg, C.M. 2000. Honey badgers of the Kalahari. Endangered Wildlife 35: 9-11.
  • Begg, K.S. 1995. The honey badgers of the Mana Pools National Park. Endangered Wildlife 20:20-23.
  • Begg, K.S. 2001 Vicious Circles: Gin Traps in South Africa. Africa Geographic 6: 40-45
  • Begg, K.S. 2001.Report on the conflict between beekeepers and honey badgers Mellivora capensis, with reference to their conservation status and distribution in South Africa. Unpublished Report: Endangered Wildlife Trust, Johanesburg. Available on this website
  • Borello,W. & Borello, R. 1986. Chanting Goshawks foraging with honey badger. Babbler 12: 25
  • Comrie-Grieg, J. 1985. Death trap for two honey badgers. African Wildlife Vol.39 No.3:119
  • Cooper R.L. 1976. Strange hunting companions. Custos June/July.42-44.
  • Guy, R.D. 1971 Goshawks, Ratels and wild honey. African Wildlife 25: 53
  • Ivy, R. H. 1970. A plucky honey badger. African Wild Life, 24:341-343
  • Zank, C.M. & Begg K.S. 1997. In search of badgers. Endangered Wildlife 27: 4-6

Scientific papers

  • BARYSHNIKOV, C.F. (1988) The taxonomic position of the Mellivora species of the USSR fauna. Bulleten Moskovskogo Obshchestva Ispytateley prirody. Otdelenie Biologii 93, 50-58 (In Russian with English summary).
  • BARYSHNIKOV, C.F. (2000) A new subspecies of the honey badger Mellivora capensis from central Asia. Acta theriol. 45, 45-55.
  • Begg, C.M., Begg, K.S., Du Toit, J.T. & Mills, M.G.L. 2003. Scent-marking behaviour of the honey badger, Mellivora capensis (Mustelidae) in the southern Kalahari. Animal behaviour 66:917-929.
  • Begg, C.M., Begg, K.S., Du Toit, J.T. & Mills, M.G.L. 2003. Scent-marking behaviour of the honey badger, Mellivora capensis (Mustelidae) in the southern Kalahari. Animal behaviour 66:917-929.
  • Begg, C.M., Begg, K.S., Du Toit, J.T. & Mills, M.G.L. 2003. Sexual and seasonal variation in the diet and foraging behaviour of a sexually dimorphic carnivore, the honey badger Mellivora capensis. J. Zool (Lond) 360: 301-316.
  • Begg, K.S. & Begg, C.M. 2002. The conflict between beekeepers and honey badgers in South Africa: a Western Cape perspective. The Open Country 4: 25-37.
  • Borello,W. & Borello, R. 1986. Chanting Goshawks foraging with honey badger. Babbler 12: 25
  • Comrie-Grieg, J. 1985. Death trap for two honey badgers. African Wildlife Vol.39 No.3:119
  • Cooper R.L. 1976. Strange hunting companions. Custos June/July.42-44.
  • Dean W.R.J, Siegfried W.R. & Macdonald I.A.W. 1990. The fallacy, fact, and fate of Guiding behaviour in the Greater honeyguide. Conservation Biology. Vol.4 No.1
  • Dean W.R.J. & Macdonald I.A.W. 1981. A review of African birds feeding in association with mammals. Ostrich 52: 135-155
  • Dean W.R.J. 1985. Greater Honeyguides and Ratels: how long will the myth continue? Proc. Symp. Birds & Man, Johannesburg 1983:217-223
  • Kruuk, H. & Mills, M.G.L. 1983. Notes on the food and foraging of the Honey badger (Mellivora capensis) in the Kalahari Gemsbok National Park. Koedoe 26:153-157
  • Lombard A.P.F. 1989. Associations between raptors and small carnivores.Gabar.4 (1).
  • Macdonald I. 1994. The Honeyguide and the honey badger: a persistent African fairy tale. Africa- Environment & Wildlife
  • SILLERO-ZUBIRI, C. (1996) Records of honey badger Mellivora capensis (Carnivora, Mustelidae) in afroalpine habitat, above 4 000 m. Mammalia 60, 323-325.
  • Verwey,R., Begg,C.M., Begg, K.S. & Matthee, C.A. A microsatellite perspective on the reproductive success of subordinate male honey badgers, Mellivora capensis. African Zoology. 2005.

Other publications that mention honey badgers

  • ANON. (1791) A General history of quadrupeds. Second edition. Newcastle Upon Tyne.
  • ANON. (1974) Nature and Environmental Ordinance No. 19 of 1974. Ordinance assigned to the premier by President’s proclamation No.115.
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  • ANON. (1999) Guinness Book of Records 1999. Guinness Publishing Ltd.
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  • BAILEY, T.N. (1993) The African leopard: ecology and behaviour of a solitary felid. Columbia University Press, New York.
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  • BININDA-EMONDS, O.R.P., GITTLEMAN, J.L., & PURVIS, A. (1999) Building large trees by combining phylogenetic information: a complete phylogeny of the extant Carnivora (Mammalia). Biol. Rev. 74, 143-175.
  • BLACK, R.A.R (1988) Some observations on a captive honey badger. The Naturalist 32, 14-18.
  • BLANFORD, W.T. (1891) The fauna of British India including Ceylon and Burma. Blandford, Taylor & Francis, London.
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  • BRYDEN, H.A. (1900) Animals of Africa. Sands & Co, London.
  • CHAMPION, F.W. (1935) Ratels & corpses. Bombay J. Nat. Hist. Soc. 37, 952-953.
  • CHAMPION, F.W. (1936) Ratels and corpses. Bombay J. Nat. Hist. Soc. 39, 160-161.
  • CLIFFORD HURST, L.E. (1935) Ratels and corpses. Bombay J. Nat. Hist. Soc. 38, 390-391.
  • COETZEE, P.W. (1977) Present distribution and status of some of the mammals of Albany. Albany Divisional Council, Grahamstown.
  • COMRIE-GRIEG, J. (1985) Death trap for two honey badgers. African Wildlife 39, 119.
  • COOPER, R.L. (1974) Strange hunting companions. Custos June/July, 42-44. 1
  • CREEL, S., SPONG, G. & CREEL, N. (2001) Interspecific competition and the population biology of extinction-prone carnivores. In: Carnivore Conservation (Eds. J.L. Gittleman, S.M. Funk, Macdonald, D. & Wayne, R.K.). Cambridge University Press, Cambridge.
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  • CUZIN, F. (1996) Répartition actuelle et statut des grands Mammifères sauvages du Maroc (Primates, Carnivores, Artiodactyles). Mammalia 60, 101-124.
  • DEAN, W.R.J. & MACDONALD, I.A.W. (1981) A review of African birds feeding in association with mammals. Ostrich 52, 135-155.
  • DEAN, W.R.J. (1985) Greater Honeyguides and ratels: how long will the myth continue? In: Proceedings of the Symposium on birds and man. (Ed. I.J. Bunning). Witwatersrand Bird Club, Johannesburg.
  • DEAN, W.R.J., SIEGFIRED, W.R. & MACDONALD, I.A.W. (1990) The fallacy, fact and fate of guiding behaviour in the Greater Honey guide. Conserv. Biol. 4,99-101.
  • DRAGESCO-JOFFE, A. 1993. La vie sauvage au Sahara. Delachaux & Niestlé, Neuchâtel - Paris.
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  • EATON, R.L (1976) A possible case of mimicry in larger mammals. Evolution 30, 853-856.
  • ERWEE, H.P. (1988) Martial Eagle and honey badger encounter. Honeyguide 24, 27.
  • ESTES, R.D. (1992) The Behaviour Guide to African Mammals. University of California Press, Los Angeles. 1: Introduction 16
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  • HANCOX, M. (1992) Some aspects of the distribution and breeding biology of Honey badger. Mustelid & Viverrid Conservation 6, 19
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