Animal tracks in the snow
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Animal Tracks in the Snow. By: Michelle Tufano & Derrick Pfister. How can you identify tracks when you come across them in the snow?. Most might think the only way to identify tracks are by the footprint but, there are a few other things that will help. They are to:.

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Animal Tracks in the Snow.

By: Michelle Tufano &

Derrick Pfister


How can you identify tracks when you come across them in the snow?

  • Most might think the only way to identify tracks are by the footprint but, there are a few other things that will help.


They are to:

  • Know what animals are native to your region.

  • Know what animals are true hibernators.

  • Understand that animals walk different and be able to identify their different strides.

  • Factor in the size of the track.

  • Be aware of what habits animals live in.

  • And of course use their footprints.


Opossum

3 – Moles

6 – Shrews

9 – Bats

2 - Cottontail Rabbit

Snowshoe Hare

Chipmunk

Woodchuck AKA Groundhog

Coyote

Red/Gray Fox

Black Bear

Mink

Skunk

Bobcat

??? Mountain Lion ???

2 – Squirrels

2 – Flying Squirrels

Beaver

5 – Mice

2 – Rats

3 – Voles

Bog Lemming

Muskrat

Porcupine

White tailed Deer

Raccoon

2 – Weasel

River Otter

Fisher

The Mammals of Northeastern Pennsylvania


In our region there are only Three True Hibernators.

  • Little Brown Bat

  • Woodchuck AKA Groundhog

  • Jumping Mouse


Animals Strides

  • Bounders – Back feet land in front of the front tracks.

    • Weasels, Otters, Badger.

  • Pacers – Left front next to the right rear track.

    • Porcupines, Raccoons, Opossums, Skunks, Bear.

  • Diagonal Walker – Left front and right rear

    • Cats, Dogs, Hoofed Animals.

  • Hoppers – Jump ahead with their rear feet landing in front of their front feet.

    • Rodents-squirrel, Rabbits.


Pacer

Front 5 in. L X 5 in. W

Hind 7 in L X 5 in. W

Black Bear Tracks


Notice you don’t see any claws.

Diagonal Walker

Bobcat


Also a Diagonal Walker

Front 2” L

Notice this time you can see the claws.

Hind 2” L

Coyote


Pacer

Raccoon


Gray Squirrel

  • Gray Squirrel are Hoppers.


Strides can be 8 to 14” depending on their speed

Size: 3.5 to 4.5 inches long3.75 to 4.25 inches wide

Diagonal Walker

Wild Turkey


Turtles

  • Don’t forget reptiles leave tracks too.


Beaver

  • Pacer


Opossum

Pacer


Don’t forget about the little guys the make tracks too.


Beetles


Over Time…

  • Tracks change

    • This is due to the snow packing.

    • Additional snow falls.

    • Interference from another animals tracks.

    • Wind and other weather affects.

      This can make it vary difficult to properly identify which animal made the track.


The End


Works Cited

  • http://www.bear-tracker.com/

  • “Toe Know How”, Camping Magazine. Nov/Dec 2000.

  • Life in the Cold.

  • The Mammals of NE. PA. By John Serrao

  • 4-H Wildlife Is All Around Us, Book #3


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