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dnaoodb: professional biology database , biology encyclopedia

In biological classification, Mellivora It is a genus of the carnivorous order Weaselidae. The upper and lower body colors are clearly defined, the ventral and side sides are black, and the back is silvery-grey to dark gray. The body is strong, the skin is extremely thick and loose; the fingers are soft and flexible; there is a pouch on the abdomen. The lifespan is 7 years in the wild and up to 28 years in captivity.

Honey badgers are found mainly in sub-Saharan Africa, the Arabian Peninsula, and Central and South Asia from Kazakhstan to India. Inhabits all types of moist and dry forests, woodlands, grasslands, highland scrub, steppe, scrub, wetlands, semi-deserts and true deserts. They are generally active at dusk and night, often coming out alone or in pairs, and resting in burrows during the day. Omnivorous, they eat a variety of foods, including small mammals, birds, reptiles, ants, carrion, wild fruits, berries, nuts, etc. Breed year-round. The gestation period is 50-70 days. One litter is born, rarely 2.

The honey badger is the only animal in the genus Honey Badger of the Mustelidae family, and is also known as "the most fearless animal in the world." Honey badgers are widely distributed, highly adaptable, and can utilize a variety of habitats. However, its reproduction rate is extremely low, and it is easy to become extinct in local areas when threats such as beekeepers and herdsmen’s hunting intensify. It is also hunted for traditional medicines and for traditional superstitions (such as people accusing it of digging graves).

Scientific classification

Protection level:
Named by and Year:
Schreber, 1776
Subphylum Vertebrata
Class Mammalia


Honey badgers have a gray back. Its fur is loose and very rough, and its body shape is similar to that of a badger. The honey badger has a thick body, a broad head, small eyes, no visible ears, and a blunt-looking nose. The body length is about 60 to 102 cm, plus the tail length is about 16 to 30 cm, and the height is about 23 to 30 cm. There is a huge difference in body size between males and females, with males sometimes weighing twice as much as females.

Distribution and habitat

Honey badgers have a wide distribution range, including Africa, southwestern Asia, Arabia, and the former Soviet Union. Honey badgers were once widely distributed in Australia, but are now found only in Tasmania. The body length is 525-800 mm, the tail length is 230-300 mm, and the weight is 4.1-11.8 kg. The coat color is dark brown or gray, with white patches on the throat and buttocks, and a light pink muzzle. The body shape is similar to that of mustelids. There is a pouch on the abdomen. It is found in shrubs and tall grass habitats, hiding during the day and emerging at night. When walking, it is always sniffing the ground, seemingly looking for food. Their food habits are mainly carnivorous, eating insects, snakes, rats, etc., and occasionally some plants. It is a monogamous animal. Breeding begins in March every year. After 31 days of gestation, 2-4 cubs weighing 0.18-0.29 grams can be born. The cub lives in the pouch for 3 months before letting go of the sucking nipple; it leaves the pouch after 105 days, but the entire lactation period lasts for 8 months. Female animals are sexually mature at 2 years old. Individuals kept in zoos have a lifespan of 8 years and 2 months. Badgers often feed on dead animals on roadsides and in the wilderness. They have great appetites and are never picky about what they have and will eat whatever is available. Greedy and never satisfied: Honey badgers can eat almost 40% of their own body weight in food within 30 minutes, never missing an opportunity for a delicious meal. They also often hang out near farmland, where carrion is often found. Normally, honey badgers eat when they get the chance and are never satisfied. ·The fingers are soft and flexible, and can perform some jaw-droppingly difficult movements: the honey badger has an unusually soft thumb, and its mouth is even more incredibly powerful. After opening, it can form a 180-degree angle! Honey badgers are taciturn and shy. They usually wait until everyone is asleep at night before going out to look for food, and they usually go alone. Honey badgers keep to themselves, do not want to cause trouble, and will try to avoid conflicts with other animals. They feed on carrion and occasionally, with a roar, attack young or injured animals for a taste. What is the most ferocious biter among mammals in the world? The answer is not tigers or lions, but the honey badger, a seemingly docile and cute carnivorous marsupial. This is the first time scientists have estimated the force of a carnivorous mammal's bite. Australian scientists analyzed the canine teeth of 39 species of extinct and surviving carnivorous mammals, taking into account the relative relationship between the animal's bite force and its body size. It turns out that the often underestimated honey badger has the strongest bite of any mammal alive. In fact, a 6kg honey badger can kill a 30kg wombat. Through the study of fossils, scientists have also come to a similar conclusion. The marsupial lion that lived in Australia 30,000 years ago had the strongest bite force among extinct carnivores, up to 100 kilograms. The bite of a marsupial lion was three times greater than that of a living lion of the same size. In addition, viviparous mammals such as African hunting dogs, jaguars and clouded leopards have extraordinary biting abilities. Previous studies have shown that the smaller the brain size of carnivorous mammals, the more space is left for their chewing muscles, making their bites stronger. Therefore, some scientists have suggested that carnivorous mammals with smaller brains have greater bite capabilities. Scientists have found that the average brain size of viviparous carnivorous mammals is 2.5 times that of marsupials.

living habits

Honey badgers are commonly found in southern and western Africa and Asia. Guinness World Records named it the "boldest animal". It is also one of the few animals that uses tools, such as logs as ladders. Honey badgers love honey and will rush directly into a beehive without regard for their own safety - often unfortunately leading to their death. Honey badgers can kill crocodiles and are very effective snake killers. It only takes 15 minutes to eat a 5-foot snake. The ferocity of these animals is well known in nature and not even a leopard or lion can kill them.

The honey badger is highly resistant to snake venom and is one of the few animals in the world that is resistant to snake venom. They are fierce and aggressive when dealing with aliens. Character is brave, persevering and tenacious. The hunting efficiency is very high. The difference from other predators is that honey badgers always hunt continuously to satisfy the energy consumed by their constant movement. Other predators often rest after hunting once.

A male honey badger can easily run 9.6 kilometers per hour, and its range exceeds 200 square miles or more.

The honey badger, which lives in the Sahara Desert in Africa, also forages during the day and is good at digging holes. The honey badger's most powerful weapon is not its claws and teeth, but its ferocity. It is not afraid of almost anything. It takes an African leopard an hour to catch it. It is uniform because its fur is smooth and tough, making it difficult to injure its body. Honey badgers are prone to self-mutilation, especially for their cubs, as only half of the cubs can grow to adulthood. Honey badgers prey on about 60 species, ranging from small insects to small rabbits. The most incredible thing is that a large honey badger can swallow a 2-meter-long python in half an hour. Even the poisonous South African cobras and vipers can be swallowed by the honey badger without much effort. The honey badger seems to be very resistant to the most venomous snakes. Even if the venomous snake can bite the honey badger, it will be of no use. It will still be eaten by the honey badger. Until now, scientists have not cracked the secret of why honey badgers are not afraid of venomous snakes. However, honey badgers are not invincible. They often die at the hands of lions and cheetahs. Honey badgers mainly live in the jungles on the edge of the Arctic and sub-Arctic regions, and their footprints can sometimes be seen in the northeast of my country. Probably because they have the cruelty of wolves and the body shape of badgers, they got their name. In fact, the honey badger belongs to the weasel family and is the largest animal in the family. It can be up to 1 meter in length and weigh 25 kilograms. It is mainly brown and looks like a small brown bear from a distance. Honey badgers are solitary animals that only come together when they are in heat. They have a large range of activities. The territory of a female badger can reach 50 to 300 square kilometers, and the territory of a male badger is even larger, even up to more than 1,000 square kilometers, often covering the territories of several female badgers. Mother badgers defend their territory very strictly, especially during the estrus period and when feeding their cubs. They will resolutely fight back any badger who dares to intrude to prevent third parties from intervening. But it's a different matter for the male badger who comes to propose marriage, because this is exactly what he wants. The gestation period of honey badgers is very long, about 120 days, and then they give birth to a litter of cubs, usually 1 to 3, sometimes as many as 4, which mature and start breeding after two years. Honey badgers eat a variety of food, including bird eggs, small birds, lemmings and even autumn berries, but their main food is reindeer, especially in winter, when the reindeer herds return from the Arctic grasslands to the edge jungle. Start killing and follow your prey in hot pursuit. Because of its short legs and large feet, it can run much easier on deep snow than a reindeer with long legs and small hooves. According to calculations, the pressure they exert on the snow is only 1/10 of that of reindeer, so they are very handy and can easily catch prey. Once a reindeer is caught, it is quickly dismembered, part of it eaten on the spot, and the rest buried in several places to be eaten again when food cannot be found during the long winter. Sometimes when it is particularly difficult to find food, they will be very hungry and rely on leftover soup from bears or wolves or even carrion to satisfy their hunger, hence their nickname "Gluttonous Guys". In fact, they just need to eat enough to survive. The Eskimos regard the honey badger's fur as a treasure because the fur does not freeze when encountering the steam coming out of its mouth and remains soft and dry even when the temperature is very low. This is very important for people who are active outdoors, because if the fur around the face freezes, it will easily cause frostbite on the face. The honey badger is only found in the forests of the Greater Khingan Mountains in China. It is a carnivore that wanders around tirelessly. It can run 30 to 40 kilometers day and night. It is also known for its gluttony. Although it often eats the leftover carcasses of other wild animals, it will also attack animals much larger than itself.

Breeding method

The artificial breeding method of honey badger is simple, with low investment, low cost and high efficiency. It is a breeding industry with broad development prospects. To this end, the artificial breeding technology of honey badgers is now introduced as follows:

pen construction

In a relatively secluded place, build a garden of 15 to 20 square meters, surrounded by a wall of about 2 meters high built with stones or bricks. A rockery is made of stones inside, and some caves are built around the rockery. The top of the cave must be tight to prevent rainwater from leaking. Put some soft hay or dry leaves in the hole. The size of the garden area, the size of the rockery and the number of caves will depend on the number of honey badgers raised.


In captivity, female honey badgers reach sexual maturity at about 1 year old, and male honey badgers at about 1.5 years old. Sexual impulses begin between male and female. Honey badgers only breed once a year, usually from early August to the end of September. After sexual intercourse between a male and a female, the blastocyst has a longer diapause period. The fertilized egg does not implant within 2 to 3 months and is in a free state in the uterus. The fertilized egg begins to develop after implantation. Generally, the litter will be born in April to May of the second year. Its gestation period is about 230 days, and each litter gives birth to 3 to 4 litters. Honey badger cubs open their eyes around 35 days old. After 5 to 6 months of growth and development, by late autumn and early winter, the honey badger has basically grown up.

Feeding and management

Honey badgers are omnivores and feed on a wide variety of sources. Plant-based feeds include: peanuts, soybeans, corn, sorghum, millet, dried melons, various potatoes, fruits, vegetables, etc. Animal feed includes: various livestock and poultry meat, livestock and poultry offal, frogs, rats, insects, etc. When used, plant feed and animal feed are best fed together. During the non-breeding period of the honey badger, carbohydrate feed should be the main food, and some protein feed can be appropriately mixed. However, before winter, the amount of protein feed should be increased so that the honey badger can reach a good level of fatness to help it survive the winter safely. When honey badgers enter the mating period, due to the sexual impulses of female honey badgers and male honey badgers, they have more sexual intercourse and consume more physical energy. At this time, the quality of their feed should also be appropriately improved. Protein feed should account for about 40% of the diet, carbohydrate feed should account for about 50%, and vegetables should account for about 10%. You should also add some malt, yeast, vitamins, etc. After the female honey badger enters the pregnancy period, the nutritional quality should be improved, and the protein feed should be increased to about 50%, and it should be fresh and diverse to ensure the growth and development of the fetus in the body and the physical health of the female honey badger. Raising of baby honey badgers: When the baby honey badgers reach 80 days of age, they can be weaned and raised in separate litters. 4. Daily management of honey badgers: First, the feed should be fresh and free of dirt; second, the breeding area should be cleaned frequently to keep it dry and hygienic; third, the breeding area should be kept quiet to prevent visitors and strangers from entering. At the same time, it is necessary to prevent the invasion of domestic dogs and wild cats.

symbiotic relationship

The honey badger's favorite food is honey. It has formed a very interesting "partnership" with the black-throated honeybee (Indicator indicator). As soon as the honey badger sees the honey badger, the honey badger will keep whining to attract the honey badger's attention. The honey badger will follow the honey badger's calls and make a series of response sounds. The honey badger uses its powerful claws to break open the honeycomb to eat honey, and the honey grebe can also share a meal, because the honey grebe cannot break open the honeycomb on its own. The honey badger is famous for being a nectar guide through its symbiotic partner, the clever honeybee. The honeybee calls the honey badger to follow him and takes the honey badger to the bee's home. The honeybee relies on the mammal's strong claws to break through the hive it previously discovered. This strange partnership has yet to be scientifically proven. Because the honey collectors witnessed this cooperation firsthand, they also regularly followed the lead of the honey-ringing bird. At the call of the flying bird, people were guided to the hive several kilometers away. Research shows that honeybees know the location of every hive within a 250-square-kilometer radius. Honey collectors rely on honeybees to sustain their lives and always leave some hives in return.