Wildlife Tracking

We may not always see lots of wild animals, but they’re all around. How do we know? We can look for signs of animals, or evidence, that they have been in our yards and parks. You might find:

Evidence of a Jackrabbit include low, chewed branches and small round pellets of poop all around.

Evidence of a Jackrabbit include low, chewed branches and small round pellets of poop all around.

  • Tracks – footprints left by an animal in dirt, mud or snow

  • Bark rubbing or chewing – some animals rub their antlers, sharpen their claws or eat bark

  • Browse – deer and moose bite off the tips of branches, which is most noticeable in fall or winter

  • Scat – everyone poops, including animals

Supplies

Instructions

  • Go outside! Look for signs of animals on the ground, underneath shrubs and on tree branches.

Ask Yourself

  • If you find animal footprints, can you tell where they’re headed? For example, you might see deer footprints leading into the forest, or squirrel prints leading up to a tree.

  • Can you find footprints from other animals, like dogs and cats?

  • How far apart are the tracks from one another? What does that tell you about how big the animal who made them is?

  • Can you see your own footprints? How are they different from other people or animals?

Snowshoe hare tracks feature large back feet and tiny front paws trailing behind as they hop forwards

Snowshoe hare tracks feature large back feet and tiny front paws trailing behind as they hop forwards