Animal Sign, Sights and Sounds
How do hunters find game even when it seems like there are no animals around? Like detectives putting together clues to find burglars, hunters use clues or "animal sign" to find places to hunt. With some homework, like the information in this course, and books about wildlife, you can start practicing reading animal sign anywhere animals live. This is the kind of skill that will make you an expert hunter! What kinds of sign would you look for?
Knowing how to read sign and confirming whether or not you have properly identified an animal takes more skill and knowledge. For example, you might hear a howling sound. Later you see a group of dog-like animals running in a pack. Because you know that you are in wolf range and that wolves are pack animals, while coyotes are more solitary, you identify the animals you have just seen as wolves.
Or, you find fresh droppings, filled with berry seeds. The dropping piles are about 4 inches in diameter. These droppings might be from a black bear, but they are a little small. Later you find a footprint that resembles a human hand. You identify this animal as a raccoon.