bs239's picture

What animal made these tracks in the snow

Observed: 11th January 2010 By: bs239
100111 track b
100111 track c

The tracks are large, that is a adult man's foot beside them. From the snow I get the impression that there are three toes with long large claws. What animal made these?

    Likely ID
    Dog (Canis familiaris (domesticus?))
    Confidence: It's likely to be this, but I can't be certain.
    ID agreements (): 7 People
    • Sarah Hobbs
      OPAL Community Scientist
    • ExobasidiumExobasidium’s reputation in Mammals
    • rimo
      Bumblebee Conservation TrustUK Ladybird Survey
      rimo’s reputation in Mammalsrimo’s reputation in Mammals
    • andys_27
    • the naturalist man
      The Mammal SocietyYorkshire Naturalists' Union
      Mammals expert
    • KingPepper
    • ajsuggittajsuggitt’s reputation in Mammalsajsuggitt’s reputation in Mammals
Species interactions

No interactions present.


the naturalist man's picture

Alexander Park Monster

I'm afraid this is not a monster, though that depends on your definition of monster. The print was made by a very large dog, perhaps a St Bernard or wolfhound. It was made some days ago when the snow was deeper. As the snow melts so do the edges of the print, therefore, it gets larger.

The four toes show it could not be a badger (five toes) and the hind pad in some of the pictures has the distinctive triangular shape, though this is lost in some due to the snow melt.

More interesting is the small print above the large print in the first photo, it has the distinctive X pattern between the pads of a fox. So has the print below the large print in the first photo but that one is going in the opposite direction. However, they look too rounded for a fox, I'd expect them more a slender oval; it could just be due to snow melt. I must find out if any dogs can leave the X mark, any help in this much appreciated.

Graham Banwell

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Jonathan's picture

Fascinating. I did not know

Fascinating. I did not know that your middle name was Sherlock, Graham!

University of Edinburgh and Biodiversity Observatory (OU)