Monday, February 13, 2012

Who walks there?

We observed these tracks on a sunny afternoon near Winthrop, passing through some open fields.  We followed the tracks for a ways on our skis, watching where the animal turned, stopped for a moment registering all four feet, and excavated a rodent hole in the snow. 

A few details about these tracks which were easily noted with the snow conditions:  i) direct register of hind and front feet in a walking pattern across the snow, ii) tracks are pigeon-toed, iii) 5 toes on the front feet and rear feet with 1 inch long claws, iv) front foot size of 2 1/2 inches both vertically and horizontally, v) walking stride about 12 inches.  This foot morphology reflects a digging lifestyle of the animal (nails& pigeon toes).  Finding two excavations through three feet of snow down to the dirt was another clue.  Who was it?

It's A Badger!

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