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February Scavenger Hunt: Hunting the Scavengers

posted Feb 11, 2020, 12:37 PM by Jonathan Poppele   [ updated Feb 11, 2020, 12:38 PM ]
Our January Scavenger Hunt turned up trails of Deer Mice, Meadow Voles, Sorex Shrews, even a House Mouse, and led to some good conversations about distinguishing these tiny trails.

This month's scavenger hunt will be a hunt for scavengers. In late winter, many prey animals succumb to months of sparse, low quality food. Their deaths bring respite to both predators and scavengers--from coyotes to mice and eagles to cardinals. The calls of ravens and the trails of coyotes may lead us to carcasses this time of year.

This month, I invite you to join me in a search for carcasses and the signs of scavengers. If you find a carcass, look specifically for sign of depredation or scavenging by:

1) A carnivore
2) A bird
3) A rodent

For an added challenge, try to reconstruct the cause of death and a complete list of animals that scavenged on a carcass. Trail camera images are welcome!

Share What You Find

Please share what you find to our iNaturalist project: Minnesota Wildlife Tracking Project: Scavenger Hunt. This is an open project, and anyone with an iNaturalist account can join and add observations.

You can set up an iNaturalist account here.
And join the project here.