The Scat Lady showed us the real poop
The Scat Lady, Lynn Levine joined us June 18th for a fascinating look at one kind of animal sign – it starts with “S” and ends with “T” – Scat! From looking at scat, we can tell a lot about what animal left it behind, and often we can learn what that animal was eating.
Lynn Levine, co-author of Mammal Tracks and Scat, recently dubbed “The Scat Lady” by a group of fourth graders, gave a fascinating presentation on scat and tracks and how to interpret them. We sat in a circle and passed carefully preserved scat around for all to examine. Lynn has a collection of scat from 27 different species – from mouse to mountain lion. We looked at spherical scat – both round like rabbits and hares leave behind, as well as elongated that animals from chipmunks to deer and moose leave. Not to mention cylindrical poop which comes in pointed, broken, twisted, blunt, and miscellaneous categories. We compared scat of animals including bear, fox, mountain lion, grouse, and turkey – among others.
Lynn also demonstrated the way different animals leave characteristic track patterns – for example, many animals when walking only leave clear prints of the hind foot because they step with the hind foot exactly on top of where the front foot had been.
This program was presented by Berkshire Wildlife Trackers, Berkshire Environmental Action Team, and Berkshire Natural Resources Council.
Berkshire Environmental Action Team (BEAT) is partnering with Berkshire Natural Resources Council to continue to host Berkshire Wildlife Trackers whose volunteer wildlife monitors are trained by Susan Morse, founder and director of Keeping Track® in Jericho, Vermont. We are currently looking for volunteers who may be interested in taking the intensive Keeping Track® training of 6 very full days scattered from October 2010 to April 2011.