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Tracking Animals for Photography: Final Results - Mammals

Updated: Jul 6


It's been a year since I started this project last September of 2021 which included four seasons, well if you can call it four seasons in California. Even though it doesn't seem like four seasons, nature still follows a schedule. The natural schedule of things has an extra layer of complication added to my research area. This extra layer is the availability of water, and when spring the busiest time for nature comes around the water starts to disappear.


The limited water source made it easier to narrow down the game trails to the most active ones. In this area, all the game trails led to one main game highway which was used by Raccoons, Foxes, Bobcats, Deer, Coyotes, Cougars, Bears, and People. This was a hiking trail that led to a small rural community of homes a few miles south that in turn had water and food sources.


Having spent a fair amount of time hiking the game trails and learning what animals are in the area I was able to figure out their travel patterns and routine. With this knowledge, I was able to hang out in certain areas at certain times to see the animals, and for the elusive ones like the Mountain Lion and Bear, I was able to place game cameras on the trails I knew they traveled on. In some cases, I was able to even recognize some of the animals like a pair of Coyotes and a Doe. I was also lucky enough to see their offspring in late May. Both the Coyotes and Deer had two offspring each. As for the elusive ones like the Mountian Lion and Bear it took months of game camera footage before I was able to see results for the Mountain Lion in late July, but no luck for the Bear.



​Mammals in the area:

​Confirmed

​Black Bear

Bobcat

Brush Rabbit

Cotton Rat

Cotton Tail Rabbit

Coyote

Deer Mouse

Gopher

Gray Fox

Gray Squirrel

Ground Squirrel

Leafed-nosed Bat

Mountain Lion

Mule Deer

Opossum

Pocket Mouse

Racoon

Skunk

Vole


​Yes

Yes

Yes

No

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

No

No

Yes

Yes

No


​Tracks

Tracks, Scat, Visual, Photo, Game Camera

Tracks, Visual, Photo

-

Tracks, Visual, Photo

Tracks, Scat, Visual, Photo, Game Camera

Game Camera

Signs

Tracks, Scat, Game Camera

Visual

Visual, Photo

Visual

Tracks, Game Camera

Tracks, Scat, Visual, Photo, Game Camera

-

-

Tracks, Game Camera

Game Camera

-

Signs: Can refer to anything from Sounds, Bones, Fur, or something the animal creates.





Personal Progress:

Stats

Total Time Frame: 12 Months

Boots on the Ground Days: 21

Miles Covered: 105

Low Temp: 42

High Temp: 102

Flowers Photographed: 64

Insects Photographed: 26

Mammals Photographed: 11

Reptiles Photographed: 8

Birds Photographed: 17


Gear:
  • Vortex Recon Optix 8x32 Monocular

  • Nikon Z7 II

  • Nikon Z 70-200mm Lens

  • Nikon Z 105mm Macro Lens

  • Shimoda Designs Action X30 Pack

  • Peak Designs Travel Tripod

  • MountainSmith Trekker FX Lite Trekking Pole with Manfrotto RC2 Head

  • Helinox Chair One

  • Game Camera(s)

The photographs contained in this website may not be reproduced without the express consent of Shutter Bison.


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