Thursday, December 18, 2008

Midnight visitor

What made these tracks?


Tuesday night, around midnight, I looked out and saw these in the new snow. They are bigger than a cat's feet, smaller than some dogs. They came out from under a fence with about 6 inches clearance.

Clearly marked toes, a tendency to drag. No tail dragging.

Closer view.


There was no poking around; the tracks went straight across the patio, down the path and across the lawn towards the street.

What animal made them? My guess is a raccoon or a skunk.* What do you think?

*A while later: I think it's a raccoon, because of the gait pattern; one big, one small, side by side. Next step, the sides alternate. I found some good photos and diagrams at Bear Tracker.
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9 comments:

JeanMac said...

Badger? Beautiful pictures. Thank you for your touching/wise words on our blog. Have been wondering how your days are going???
Best wishes to you this Christmas season, also. Jean

Pam Croom said...

I think you nailed it-raccoon. Bear tracker is neat site.

Powell River Books said...

My first guess was raccoon. They come in big and small, so getting under the fence should have been no problem. We went up to our cabin today after the snow storm on Wednesday. It was so beautiful with the snow on the trees and the brilliant blue sky. - Margy

NW Nature Nut said...

My first guess was raccoon too. I had some tracks in the snow next to my house too....I think rat. Oh no! I have been throwing out birdseed on the patio and they found it. Darn rodents!

lisa said...

Possum? I had one eating cast-offs under my birdfeeder the other day.

Wanderin' Weeta said...

Hi, Jean,
Taking things one day at a time. some good, some difficult. Thanks for the good wishes.

I don't think we have badgers around here. I could be wrong.

Lisa,

Nor do we have possums. I think in Southeast BC, but not the Lower Mainland.

So that's 3 votes for raccoon. (Pam, PRB, and NN.) Raccoon it is.

NN; I read that you can use red pepper (cayenne, chili, Tabasco) to discourage rats, without it bothering the birds. Try it. I haven't seen a rat or rat tracks since I sprinkled some all over. (Only 3 days now, so we'll see.)

Wren said...

My first thought was raccoon also. After looking at beartracker, I'm even more confident in that.

Shane said...

could be Fisher or Pine Martin

Wanderin' Weeta said...

Interesting, Shane. I don't think we have them around here, though, not in the urban area, anyhow.