Saturday, February 02, 2008

Chicken sign



Before we got the game camera, we had to rely on our own skills to determine what animals passed through our property. We bought a couple of tracking books, but found that animals rarely leave crisp, pristine tracks that resemble the drawings. (Unless it snows, which apparently is never, ever going happen here again.)

The animal sign that we encounter the most is actually scat. I should have been more careful, though. In-laws will think you even stranger than they already do, if you stop in mid-hike to carefully examine animal poop.

Other signs we see a lot are scrapes, or disturbed areas similar to this picture. What a huge scrape, I thought. I wonder how in the world that was made!

I hate to admit how long it took me to realize that this "wildlife sign" was actually made by... chickens.

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The best tracking web site is Beartracker's Animal Tracks Den.

7 comments:

swamp4me said...

Those crazy chickens...
Around here that sign could be attributed to wild turkey. They can stir up huge areas while they are out feeding.

pablo said...

I see smaller scale scrapes like that in my woods that I'm going to attribute to turkeys. A naturalist once told me to look deeply at these scrapes, especially in winter. If I find any short tan hairs, then it was probably the bed for a deer the night before.

I've tried photographing them, but I just can't make the contrast work enuf to have a decent shot.

Pamela said...

Did you see that Big Foot picture that someone got with their game camera?

hee hee...

threecollie said...

Ha, that is pretty funny. I wouldn't have known. I will never get tired of game cam photos. They are simply wonderful!

nina said...

Yes, examining scat usually elicits a response like, "oh, Mom!"

But one of those magnetic actions for those of us who must know who's been here!

City Girl said...

"I'm Marty Stouffer. Watch now as the elusive and wacky Gallus Gallagher plays a trick on unsuspecting naturalists...."

Rurality said...

Swampy, yeah I thought that's what it was at first, although when I've seen turkey sign it's usually smaller than this. Around here, anyway!

Pablo, yep, ours are smaller too. If you look closely you can usually find the turkey scat around too -- it's fairly distinctive. Actually I have a duplicate tracking book that I've been meaning to send you! Unfortunately I have put it away somewhere "good".

Pamela, no, but there was an Alabama Bigfoot site that was very interested in one of my pics once. I sent them the full version though and they decided it wasn't a bigfoot, just a shadow. Oh well so much for fame and fortune.

3C, thanks, yeah it was a bit close to the house so I really should have known right off!

Nina, I'm so glad to know I'm not the only one! :)

CG, yeah! My husband was probably in on it too...