It’s not uncommon to hear of different types of animals becoming friends, like dogs and cats. Sometimes, we even hear about rarer types of friendships developing, like between a cat and a horse!
Usually, these cross-species friendships blossom between pets of the same family. When living together, it makes sense that two animals are more likely to develop a relationship of some kind.
One wildlife photographer, Toogee Sielsch, managed to capture a particularly unusual friendship between the unlikeliest of pals: a coyote and a badger.
He positioned a wildlife camera on an animal trail in the forest of South Lake Tahoe, California, but he didn’t expect to see what he captured!
In the footage, you can see a badger waddling along the trail, and right behind it is a coyote! The two seem unphased by the other and even seem to be sticking together on purpose!
The photographer shared the footage on Instagram, saying, “A very unusual friendship between a badger and a coyote.”
He added, “I feel like a little boy that found hidden treasure! Wildlife behavior known, but RARELY captured. Lucky I live South Lake Tahoe!”
Check out the footage below:
While it’s rare and unusual to capture these two unlikely friends on camera, they’re actually known to hunt together! A study published in the Journal of Mammalogy documents the “hunting associations” between badgers and coyotes.
In the study, they explain that coyotes hunting alongside badgers seemed to hunt ground squirrels more effectively than lone coyotes. They also noted that coyotes with badgers “consumed prey at higher rates” and “prey vulnerability appeared to increase when both carnivores hunted in partnership.”
Given that information, it’s less surprising to see the two friends out and about together, but it’s still an incredible moment rarely captured on film!
To see more from Sielsch, you can check him out on Instagram, @tahoetoogee.Whizzco