This guide initially displays common tracks of all shapes. Use the selectors below to view particular shapes, include rare species, or search by name.
Anything that moves over the ground leaves some sort of marking of its passage. In particular, footprints left behind in soil, snow, mud, or other ground surfaces provide a means of recognizing different species. The illustrations and characteristics listed below highlight key features that can be used to identify the tracks of many of the animals in the area.
Alderness Wilderness College
Animal Track ID [PDF]
Elbroch, Mark, 2003 Mammal Tracks and Signs: A Guide to North American Species
Lowery, James, 2013 Tracker’s Field Guide. Falcon Guides
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Drawn based upon Beartracker image
Photo: William N. Norton
Photo: NC Wetlands
Family: Castoridae (Beavers)
Gait: bound, walk
Form: small claws; long toes
Front Foot: 5 toes; 1.7 in (4.3 cm) - 3.5 in (8.9 cm)
Hind Foot: 5 toes; 4.1 in (10.4 cm) - 7.9 in (20.1 cm)
The hind foot has very long webbed toes; the inner toes do not always register. The track may appear bird-like.
Beaver scat is primarily made up of clumps of woody material. It is often deposited directly in water, washing up on shore.
Mammal Guide - Beaver