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 US Geological Society image
Photo: Jeff Camilleri
Family: Erethizontinae (New World Porcupines)
Form: small claws; round toes
Front Foot: 4 toes; 1.0 in (2.5 cm) - 2.1 in (5.3 cm)
Hind Foot: 5 toes; 1.4 in (3.6 cm) - 3.0 in (7.6 cm)
The soles of feet have small nubs giving prints a rough texture. Toes often do not register.
Winter scat is red from conifers; summer scat is brown to black from a diet that includes more herbs and scrubs. Either form may be composed of individual pellets or strings of pellets joined by fibers. Another sign of porcupine activity is bark chewed off of trees.
Mammal Guide -Porcupine