Tracks and Signs of the Animals and Birds of Britain and Europe

Tracks and Signs of the Animals and Birds of Britain and Europe

Lars-Henrik Olsen
translated by Mark Epstein
Copyright Date: 2013
Pages: 272
https://www.jstor.org/stable/j.ctt32bbd4
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    Tracks and Signs of the Animals and Birds of Britain and Europe
    Book Description:

    This beautifully illustrated field guide enables you to easily identify the tracks and signs left by a wide variety of mammal and bird species found in Britain and Europe, covering behaviors ranging from hunting, foraging, and feeding to courtship, breeding, and nesting. Introductory chapters offer detailed drawings of footprints and tracks of large and small mammals, which are followed by sections on mammal scat, bird droppings, and the feeding signs of animals on food sources such as nuts, cones, and rose hips. The book then describes specific mammal species, providing information on size, distribution, behavior, habitat, and similar species, as well as more specific detail on tracks and scat. Distribution maps are also included.

    This indispensable field guide covers 175 species of mammals and birds, and features a wealth of stunning color photos and artwork throughout.

    Helps you easily identify the tracks and signs of a variety of mammals and birds Covers 175 species Illustrated throughout with photos, drawings, and artwork ncludes informative descriptions of mammal species along with distribution maps

    eISBN: 978-1-4008-4792-1
    Subjects: Zoology

Table of Contents

  1. Front Matter
    (pp. 1-2)
  2. Table of Contents
    (pp. 3-3)
  3. [Illustration]
    (pp. 4-4)
  4. Preface
    (pp. 5-5)
  5. Mammal tracks
    (pp. 6-17)

    Most wild animals are very shy. Many mammals are nocturnal and rarely seen, but you can find their footprints. To determine the identity of the animal that left these tracks, size and shape are of course important, but also understanding the series of tracks in its entirety, the type of movement, length of stride, and the ‘splay’ of the feet, as well as the distance between the prints of the hind and forelegs. All of these will provide additional information about the kind of animal we are dealing with.

    If you know something about the animal’s distribution and behaviour, the...

  6. Antlers
    (pp. 18-21)

    Each species of deer has a specific antler shape which is easily recognisable. Female Reindeer also have antlers, but they are significantly smaller than those of males.

    An antler consists of large bone material. It grows each year from the forehead in an area referred to as the pedicle. While growing it is covered by a loose skin containing its own blood vessels, the velvet. An antler grows very fast, about 1 cm a day. Once the antler is fully developed, the velvet dies off.

    Deer shed velvet by rubbing their antlers against bushes and small trees—antler-rubbing, or ‘rubbing...

  7. Bird tracks
    (pp. 22-34)

    Bird footprints can be difficult to identify, but different families do leave distinctive prints. We can see five birdfoot shapes here, which in addition to their characteristic marks also reveal behavioural and ecological relationships.

    The footprints of herons, bitterns, storks, and cranes are very similar—and all are large.

    You can see the tracks of Grey Herons on soft ground at the shores of lakes and on the banks of slow-flowing streams or around fishponds. The prints are 15–17 cm long, and the imprint of the middle toe is about 9 cm. In contrast to other wading birds, Grey...

  8. Scat
    (pp. 35-45)

    Scat is normally clear and easily seen as the sign of the presence of a mammal, and it is widespread in the wild. Compared with other more subtle signs, scat is often distinctive and easy to attribute to a particular species. You will discover a great deal about an animal’s diet by analysing scat, as well as information about its behaviour and the habitats in which it lives.

    Meat is protein rich and can be digested pretty efficiently by carnivores. This is why carnivores leave behind less copious amounts of scat than do herbivores, and why the scat is usually...

  9. Feeding signs on trees
    (pp. 46-56)

    The bark, branches, and especially shoots of mostly young trees and bushes play an important role as food for many animals in winter. This is true for deer, goats, hares, as well as many small rodents and squirrels.

    In most cases, tooth marks will be clearly recognisable in the bark; depending on the size and appearance of the individual tooth marks, you may be able to identify the animal responsible....

  10. Fray marks on trees
    (pp. 57-58)

    With deer, fraying of bark is caused by deer rubbing their antlers to remove the velvet. It is most frequently found only on one side of a tree and leaves strips of bark hanging from the trunk. A more aggressive type of rubbing occurs during rutting. At this time males often simulate combat to relieve aggression, using trees as substitutes for real opponents. When they do this, damage to a tree is significantly more extensive and may include completely stripping the bark around the trunk, breaking branches, and making some deeper gashes on the trunk. These various marks also serve...

  11. Holes in trees, ant heaps, etc.
    (pp. 59-61)

    Woodpeckers excavate holes for their nests. The entrance hole is round and often high up on a trunk. Woodpeckers make a new nest hole every year; the old one is used by many other creatures, including small mammals.

    Woodpeckers are equipped with two hind and two foretoes, allowing them to maintain a firm grip on the bark of trunks and branches, and they can then move up and down looking for insects, larvae, and pupae. You find these holes especially in weakened, old, or dead trees, where the bark is falling off—so-called woodpecker trees. You can also see traces...

  12. Gnawed branches
    (pp. 62-63)
  13. Feeding signs on mushrooms
    (pp. 64-64)

    Many animals happily eat mushrooms, especially large boletus. You can often find tooth marks in the flesh of the mushroom.

    Red Squirrels, smaller mammals, Rabbits, and deer also eat mushrooms. The bite marks may be difficult to identify because of the softness of the mushrooms....

  14. Feeding signs on turnips
    (pp. 65-65)

    Red Deer pull young turnips from the ground. The animals bite off a piece and leave the rest. When the turnips are ripe, the deer chew on the parts above ground, taking only a little piece from each turnip. The marks of the large lower front teeth show as a wide groove. Small mammals, especially voles, feed on turnips, and their teeth marks are very small compared with those of other animals. Wild Boar also eat turnips; their teeth marks are clearly visible....

  15. Feeding signs on spruce cones
    (pp. 66-67)

    Cones on which squirrels have fed look considerably frayed; the base is long and very frayed; moreover, the tip is not as extensively damaged as when mice feed.

    Most of the chewed cones found on the ground in woodland have been eaten by squirrels. When a squirrel bites off the cones in a tree, they fall to the ground, where the squirrel then gathers them. It eats them on a stone or a stump from which it can monitor the surroundings, and this is where you will find cones lying in heaps.

    Spruce cones on which mice have fed lack...

  16. Feeding signs on pine cones
    (pp. 68-68)
  17. Feeding signs on hazelnuts
    (pp. 68-70)

    In all mammals only the lower jaw is mobile, and rodents can gnaw only with the teeth in their lower jaw. Mice work on hazelnuts in two ways....

  18. Feeding signs on walnuts
    (pp. 71-71)
  19. Feeding signs on rose hips
    (pp. 72-72)

    Red Squirrels readily eat rose hips. Since they cannot sit on the flimsy branches of rose bushes, they eat the rose hips on the ground, biting them lengthwise to reach the core. Mice gnaw sideways into the rose hip and pull the core out, leaving the remains lying under the bushes at feeding sites. Mice are secretive when feeding, so the remains of a meal are usually hidden.

    Numerous birds, like Fieldfare and other thrushes, eat the red flesh of the fruit and leave the core behind. Finches—Greenfinch, for instance—peck into the flesh of the fruit just to...

  20. Feeding signs on cherry stones
    (pp. 73-73)
  21. Feeding signs on apples
    (pp. 74-75)

    Many mammals love apples. Roe Deer and Wild Boar will actually break into gardens to eat fallen fruit, whereas Red Deer and Elk pluck the fruit directly from trees. Normally they don’t leave a morsel behind, but they do leave tracks.

    Some small animals, like Bank Voles and dormice, can gnaw apples hanging on the tree, but most rodents only eat and gnaw at fallen or ripe fruit. It can be difficult to determine which species has fed on the fruit. The size of the tooth marks gives only a hint as to whether it was an animal the size...

  22. Nests and dens
    (pp. 76-81)

    In constructing their dens, all animals try to camouflage or obscure them as best they can. Nests and dens are often hard to see, but they can sometimes be found if you follow an animal’s tracks....

  23. Pellets
    (pp. 82-88)

    Owls, raptors, crows and jays, storks, herons, gulls, nightjars, bee-eaters, kingfishers, and many small birds expel indigestible parts of their food. The pellets are often found at the birds’ favoured perches and lookouts, and close to their nests. Most species produce a single pellet twice a day.

    Pellets are normally drier than the scat of mammals, often rounded at both ends, and contain hair, feathers, insect remains, and parts of skulls and skeletons. If you’re lucky, you can also find undigested rings from ringed birds in them as well.

    Sometimes it is difficult to determine whether something is a bird’s...

  24. Skulls in pellets
    (pp. 89-90)

    Occasionally you come across one or more skulls in a pellet. It is not that easy to identify skulls of particular species, but examination with a magnifying glass can help. If a skull has canines and numerous incisor-like teeth with red tips, and no gap between the front teeth and those behind them, it belongs to an insect eater, so it’s likely to be a mole or a shrew. If the skull has no canines, and the front teeth are chisel-shaped and yellowish, and there are gaps between the front teeth and those behind, then it belongs to a rodent....

  25. Other skulls and bones
    (pp. 91-91)

    Larger mammal skulls are easier to identify because of their size and other distinctive characteristics. Both the skull and the bones are heavy. Skulls with powerful canines and sharp, pointed molars are most often those of predators, while the skulls of many plant eaters lack both canines and front teeth in the upper jaw.

    The skulls and bones of birds are very light and can almost float in water; birds also have a relatively large, strong breast bone (clavicle). The size of the skull and the general shape and structure of the beak can help identify the species or family...

  26. Round nests
    (pp. 92-95)
  27. Feathers
    (pp. 96-99)

    Instead of having fur, birds have feathers. They contribute to a bird’s appearance and protect its body from cold, sun, rain, and wind. The feathers grow from a kind of pouch (an umbrella-like sheath) and come in two forms, contour and down feathers. Contour feathers are body feathers and the stiffer wing and tail feathers. The wing feathers allow the bird to move, while the tail feathers allow it to brake and steer. The contour feathers often have characteristic colours and patterns, and underneath they can be like down. Down is often dappled, whitish, grey, or brownish.

    The feather consists...

  28. Raptor feeding signs
    (pp. 100-104)

    Many mammalian predators bite off and then eat the head of a bird after killing it. The feathers are then torn off in clumps, with some feathers stuck together by the predator’s saliva. You can recognise the bite marks on larger feathers, and often the whole area where the feather attaches to the bird’s body is torn or damaged. The outer sections of the wings may be bitten off; if this is the case, primary feathers will almost separate from the rest of the wing and be connected only by small strips of skin, and the same goes for the...

  29. Trails
    (pp. 104-105)

    In the wild, most animals follow specific paths where they can move with the least effort, their favoured trails. The animals know these trails intimately, and they will use them to evade predators. When trails are used frequently, they become conspicuous; and different species may share the same trails....

  30. Brown Bear
    (pp. 106-108)

    Apart from Polar Bear, which can be found only in Spitsbergen, in the Svalbard Islands of Norway, Brown Bear is the largest terrestrial carnivore in Europe. Standing upright, it can reach a height at the shoulder of 90–125 cm. The female can be up to 2 m long, the male up to 2.35 m; females weigh between 60 and 200 kg, males between 100 and 200 kg. The short tail measures 5–15 cm.

    In Scandinavia, Brown Bear lives in conifer forest at higher elevations, preferring old fir forest with clearings and rocks. In central and southern Europe, you...

  31. Wolverine
    (pp. 109-110)

    The Wolverine, the largest European marten, is a powerfully built animal with short legs and a wide, flat head. It stands about 40–45 cm at the shoulder and is about 70–85 cm long. The tail is about 15–25 cm long. The female weighs about 10 kg; the male averages about 15 kg but may weigh up to, and sometimes more than, 25 kg. The Wolverine is not considerably larger than a Eurasian Badger.

    With its thick dark fur, the Wolverine appears larger than it actually is. In the area around the eyes there is often a light,...

  32. Wolf and domestic dog
    (pp. 111-114)

    The Wolf’s body is 100–145 cm long, the tail about 50 cm. The female weighs about 30–35 kg, the male normally 35–45 kg, but may reach 75 kg. The height at the shoulder is approximately 70–80 cm. The fur is yellow-grey, darker on the back, with black areas on shoulders, haunches, and tail. The legs are light, the belly yellowish or grey-white. The winter coat is lighter. On the upper side of the tail, just below the base, there is a black spot.

    In its appearance the Wolf resembles a German Shepherd or a large German...

  33. Lynx
    (pp. 115-116)

    The Lynx is a wary, shy animal and rarely seen. It is 60–75 cm tall at the shoulder and 80–130 cm long, with a tail measuring about 11–25 cm. It weighs 16–38 kg, the male being considerably larger than the female. The head is small, light brown or orange-brown, but with paler, whitish cheeks. The Lynx has white eye rings, while the ‘eyebrows’ are long and black. It has large ears with dark tufts, and there is a white spot on the back of each ear. In summer its back, sides, and legs are light brown...

  34. Iberian Lynx
    (pp. 117-117)

    The Iberian Lynx is smaller than the Lynx, slimmer and with longer legs. It is about 85–100 cm long and stands 60–70 cm tall at the shoulder; the tail measures about 60–70 cm,. The female weighs up to 10 kg, the male about 13 kg, but the latter may weigh up to 26 kg. The coat is light grey-brown with pronounced dark spots. The whiskers and ear tufts are longer than those of Lynx. The footprints are similar to those of Lynx, and the same is true of the scat.

    The Iberian Lynx lives in open woodland...

  35. Wildcat
    (pp. 118-119)

    The Wildcat is an extremely shy predator and seen only very rarely, and it cannot be domesticated. The coat is long, soft and thick, grey or yellowish grey with dark stripes. The Wildcat is about 48–80 cm long and the tail about 26–37 cm; the cat weighs about 5–10 kg. The male weighs a little more than the female, up to 15 kg. The tail is bushy and rather blunt, with dark rings and a black tip. The Wildcat resembles a very large domestic cat, but has longer legs; the height at the shoulder is about 35...

  36. Arctic Fox
    (pp. 120-121)

    The Arctic Fox is somewhat smaller than Red Fox, with shorter snout, tail, and ears, and sturdier legs. The height at the shoulder is about 30 cm and length is about 55–65 cm; the tail is about 30–55 cm long, Arctic Fox normally weighs about 3–5 kg but may weigh up to 8 kg.

    The Arctic Fox is also known as the Snow Fox, and has two colour morphs; in the summer, the blue morph is greybrown; in the winter, it is darker, greyblack to dark brown, and almost blue. The white morph is grey-black on the...

  37. Red Fox
    (pp. 122-126)

    The back and flanks of Red Fox are reddish or greyish brown, the throat and chest normally white or greyish white, or may be black. The tail ends in a light tip. Red Fox is about 70 cm long, and the tail, about 40 cm. The male weighs about 8 kg, but may reach 15 kg. The female is smaller and weighs about 6.5 kg, rarely reaching 9.5 kg. The height at the shoulder is 35–40 cm.

    The Red Fox is most comfortable in open landscapes without thick vegetation, including fields, moorland, and meadows, but it also lives in...

  38. Raccoon Dog
    (pp. 127-129)

    The Raccoon Dog is native to East Asia; it was brought to European Russia at the beginning of the nineteenth century and has since spread to other parts of Europe. Because of the white area around its snout, it strongly resembles a Raccoon, but the black band on its face is broken into two parts. The forehead is light, and an even lighter, almost white area stretches over the entire neck. The ears have dark borders, the back is mottled grey with dark stripes. The chest, belly, and legs are black, the tail is unstriped and dark on top, light...

  39. Raccoon
    (pp. 130-131)

    The Raccoon was introduced from North America to Europe for the fur trade at the beginning of the twentieth century. Escapes over time have multiplied and the naturalised population in Europe has increased steadily.

    Raccoons are often confused with the Eurasian Badger, though Raccoons have a black stripe diagonally crossing the area above the eyes, as well as a dark blaze from the snout to the forehead. On the side of the snout there are white areas, and the Raccoon also has white above the eyes. The ears have a light border, and the tail is striped diagonally with six...

  40. Eurasian Badger
    (pp. 132-135)

    The Eurasian Badger is a common but very shy predator. It is a compact animal with short legs and a long snout, about 30 cm high at the shoulder and 67–90 cm long, and has a tail measuring about 11–20 cm. The weight can vary greatly depending on age, sex, and season. The female weighs between 6 and 14 kg, the male from 9 to 17 kg, but in the autumn, when they are at their heaviest, the male can reach 20 kg.

    Eurasian Badgers have a white head with a pronounced black stripe from the snout over...

  41. European Beaver
    (pp. 136-141)

    European Beavers are the largest rodents in Europe. They have streamlined bodies and short legs. They normally weigh between 13 and 21 kg, but females are larger and may weigh up to 35 kg; they are 70–90 cm long, with a tail measuring 25–40 cm long and flat like the blade of an oar; the skin on the tail is scaly and furless.

    The beaver’s fur is a shiny greyish brown, with strong outer coat over a thicker, softer undercoat. Beavers live near lakes or moving water. They swim around quietly, only the head and a part of...

  42. North American Beaver
    (pp. 142-142)

    North American Beavers were first released in Finland. They become sexually mature earlier, have more offspring, and therefore live in larger family groups than European Beavers. In Finland they succeeded in displacing European Beavers, and the introduced species is now dominant in that country. From Finland, North American Beavers have spread to Russia, and they might move into Sweden and Norway. There are no differences in the tracks of the two beaver species....

  43. Coypu
    (pp. 143-143)

    Coypus, also known as river rats, are large rodents. They weigh up to 15 kg and reach 64 cm in length. The tail is round, 30–45 cm long and almost hairless. The fur is golden brown on the upper side and grey on the underside. The female has nipples towards the side of her body, so the young can be nursed while swimming.

    Coypus have long whiskers on the snout and large reddish brown front teeth. They usually live in fresh water (lakes and streams) but can also survive in brackish water.

    Coypus live in large family groups and...

  44. Muskrat
    (pp. 144-146)

    Muskrats are large rodents, about 24–40 cm long, with a powerful, compact and scaly tail 19–27.5 cm long. The Muskrat weighs 0.6–1.8 kg. Dry fur is golden brown above and greyish below.

    Muskrats live near water, especially fresh water ponds, pools, lakes, canals, and slow-flowing streams and rivers, but can also be found in brackish water with plentiful vegetation. Muskrats live in family groups, and a couple with offspring will hold a clearly established territory.

    Muskrats dig tunnels in embankments and build lodges that resemble those of beavers but are smaller and lack tree branches. The entrance...

  45. Northern Water Vole
    (pp. 147-150)

    Northern Water Voles are also called Water Rats, but these rodents are placed in the extensive vole family. They are 12–26 cm long, but the tail, at 5.5–10.5 cm in length, accounts for more than two-thirds of the total length. They weigh 80–380 g. The Northern Water Vole may live near fresh water or in an entirely dry area, or even change seasonal locations—near water in summer, and in a dry habitat in winter; however, you normally find this vole near water. As its names suggests, Northern Water Vole is an excellent swimmer and will dive...

  46. Southern Water Vole
    (pp. 151-151)

    Southern Water Vole resembles Northern Water Vole but is a little larger. It has a somewhat longer tail and a more pointed snout. It can normally be found near running water, but like Northern Water Vole, it is also found inland. The tracks are similar to those of other voles, but are a little larger. Southern Water Voles feed on bark and roots; near water they prefer willows, rushes, and other marsh plants. They will also consume fresh water mussels....

  47. Water Shrew
    (pp. 151-153)

    The Water Shrew, one of Europe’s largest shrews, is an insectivore. The shrew is 7–9.5 cm long, with a tail of 4.5–7.5 cm; it weighs 9–23 g.

    The Water Shrew has a sharply pointed snout. The upper body is slate grey to shiny black, the dark colouring clearly contrasting with the silver grey to yellowish underbelly.

    The Water Shrew often has white hairs around its eyes and on the snout. The ears are hidden in the fur, which is thick and puffed out with air. When the shrew dives, the fur appears silver-white.

    The tail is dark...

  48. Otter
    (pp. 154-156)

    The Otter is a predator and always found near water, usually fresh water; hence, it can easily be confused with European Mink, which lives in the same habitats. The mink, however, is smaller and has a more pointed snout. The Otter’s body is streamlined, with a long, muscular tail. When an Otter is swimming, most of its body is beneath the water, but a mink swims considerably higher in the water. An Otter’s head is flat with a broad snout, long stiff whiskers, and small round ears.

    The fur is brown, lighter below, and the Otter has a light brown...

  49. American Mink
    (pp. 157-159)

    The American Mink was introduced into Europe from North America in the early 1900s for fur farming. Escapes from farms have now established widespread wild populations in Europe.

    The American Mink is approximately the size of a Western Polecat, about 30–47 cm long, with a tail measuring 13–23 cm. The male weighs 1–1.5 kg; the female is significantly smaller and rarely weighs more than 0.8 kg.

    American Mink from fur farms can be a variety of colours, ranging from white to bluish black, while wild animals are normally dark brown with white spots on the lower lip...

  50. European Mink
    (pp. 160-160)

    The European Mink resembles American Mink and Western Polecat. It is dark brown with narrow white patches around the snout, with variable white areas on the throat and chest and a dark undercoat. The European Mink is also smaller than American Mink and Western Polecat.

    European Mink is usually found near water, in reed beds and swampy areas near woodland. The behaviour and habits of European Mink are similar to those of its American cousin. European Mink swims and dives exceedingly well and lives primarily on fish, crabs, amphibians, small birds, and small mammals.

    It builds its nest between tree...

  51. Western Polecat
    (pp. 161-162)

    Western Polecat is a small marten. The female is 29–37 cm long, with a tail of about 11–17 cm. The male is larger, 35–46 cm long, with a tail of about 13–19 cm; the female weighs 0.5–0.8 kg, the male, 0.7–1.5 kg.

    The area around the snout is white, with black around the eyes; behind the eyes there is a variably sized white patch reaching from the face to under the ears. The ears are dark with white tips. The undercoat is light grey or yellowish; the coat is black. The belly and legs...

  52. Pine Marten
    (pp. 163-164)

    The Pine Marten closely resembles Beech Marten. It is reddish or chocolate brown, with a yellowish to orange area on its chest. This pale area is solid and does not continue to the front feet as it does on Beech Marten. The Pine Marten is slimmer and somewhat more long-legged than Beech Marten, at about 15 cm high at the shoulder, and has more pointed ears. The Pine Marten’s snout is dark.

    Pine Marten is 36–65 cm long, with a 20–25 cm tail; the female weighs 0.7–1.2 kg, the male 1.3–1.8 kg.

    Pine Martens live in...

  53. Beech Marten
    (pp. 165-166)

    Beech Marten has dark fur with a greyish white undercoat. It has a white patch on its throat that divides on the chest and reaches all the way to the inside of the front legs. The snout is light brown. The patch on the chest of a Pine Marten may be yellow or orange and is solid, and it does not extend to the front legs.

    Beech Marten is about 42–48 cm long; the tail measures 23–26 cm, and the height at the shoulder is about 12 cm; the female weighs 0.9–1.9 kg, the male 1.3–2.3...

  54. Stoat
    (pp. 167-168)

    The Stoat is sometimes called a Shorttailed Weasel. It is a very small, slender and nimble animal, about the size of a rat. The female is 16–22 cm long, the male 23–29 cm. The female’s tail measures 7–8 cm, the male’s 9–10 cm; the female weighs 80–150 g, and the male is about twice as heavy, 150–300 g.

    In summer the Stoat is yellowish brown above and white below. The colours are clearly separated; the tail is 4–5 cm long with a black tip. In northern Europe, the Stoat has a white coat...

  55. Weasel
    (pp. 169-170)

    The Weasel is the smallest predator in Europe. In northern and eastern Europe, Weasels are very small; the female is 11–15 cm long and weighs 20–40 g, and the male is 15–19.5 cm long, weighing 40–80 g. In the rest of Europe the female can reach lengths of 19 cm and weigh up to 75 g, the male up to 23 cm in length and up to 130 g in weight—in other words, about the size of a female Stoat. The tail is 3–5 cm long and uniformly brown, without the black tip of...

  56. Brown Hare
    (pp. 171-173)

    The Brown Hare is dark brown above, light yellow-brown on its sides, and white on the belly. The ears are black-tipped, and the iris is light yellow. Brown Hare is about 55–70 cm long, and the tail, which measures about 10 cm, is black above and white below. It weighs 3.5–7 kg, with the female slightly larger than the male. You can find hares in all habitats, except for extensive areas of woodland.

    Hares are common in open farmland near woods, hedges, and underbrush. They are mostly solitary and particularly active in the evening and at night, but...

  57. Mountain Hare
    (pp. 174-175)

    Mountain Hare is somewhat smaller than Brown Hare, 45–60 cm long with a tail measuring 5–7 cm; it weighs 2–4 kg, females being larger than males. The coat is greyish brown above, lighter on the sides, and white on the belly. The ears are blacktipped, like those of Brown Hare, but the tail is completely white. In northern Scandinavia and in montane environments, Mountain Hares have a white winter coat but retain the black tips to the ears. The iris is a dark reddish brown.

    Mountain Hares prefer coniferous forest with underbrush or a scattering of deciduous...

  58. Rabbit
    (pp. 176-178)

    Rabbits are smaller than hares. Males and females are the same size, each about 34–50 cm long, and the tail measures 5 cm and is black above with a distinct white underside. When the Rabbit runs, it raises its tail, and the white underside is clearly visible. The ears lack the black tip found on the ears of hares. Rabbits weigh about 1.5–2.5 kg. Compared with hares, Rabbits have more powerful front legs and shorter hind legs.

    Rabbits feed exclusively on plants. They are social animals and live in colonies. They can be active both day and night,...

  59. Red Squirrel
    (pp. 179-182)

    The Red Squirrel is a rodent about 19–25 cm long. Its bushy tail measures 15–20 cm, and it weighs 200–425 g; the female is larger than the male. The coat is reddish but in the winter turns slightly grey, but in northern Scandinavia it is completely grey in winter. Individuals with a completely black coat also occur. A Red Squirrel has prominent ear tufts that grow larger in the winter.

    Red Squirrels feed principally on plants, conifer buds, beechnuts, acorns, nuts, and mushrooms as well as fruit and berries but will also take insects and occasionally birds’...

  60. Grey Squirrel
    (pp. 183-183)

    The Grey Squirrel is a little larger than Red Squirrel, 23–30 cm long, with a tail length of 19–25 cm. It weighs 350–800 g. The ear tufts are much less pronounced than those of Red Squirrel. The fur is normally grey to grey-brown but may also be completely black, though the toes are always grey. Grey Squirrels much prefer deciduous woodland.

    While quite similar to Red Squirrels in behaviour, Greys are heavier and not as agile, and they spend more time foraging on the ground. The nest is usually found in a tree hole, but they may...

  61. Flying Squirrel
    (pp. 184-184)

    The Flying Squirrel is a small animal, 15–20 cm long, with a tail measuring 9–14 cm. It weighs 95–175 g. The eyes are large, the ears small and without tufts; the coat is silver-grey above and white beneath, the tail is grey. On the sides of the body, Flying Squirrels have a fold of skin; when extended between front and hind legs, it is used to glide from tree to tree. Flying Squirrels are not capable of powered flight but can glide up to 50 m. They are rarely seen on the ground.

    Flying Squirrels are nocturnal....

  62. Alpine Marmot
    (pp. 185-186)

    Alpine Marmots are large, powerfully built rodents and are members of the squirrel family. They have very short legs and a relatively long, thick tail. They reach 60 cm in length, weigh 2.5–6.5 kg, and have a tail that measures 15–20 cm. The fur is thick and long, with the ears barely visible under the fur. This marmot is greyish brown or greyish black from the head down the back, and a slightly lighter reddish brown on the undersides. The cheeks are slightly paler.

    Alpine Marmots are active during the day and feed on grass, herbs, roots, and...

  63. European Souslik
    (pp. 187-187)

    European Souslik is a large rodent with greyish brown upperparts and a lighter underside. It is 19–22 cm long; the tail measures 5.5–7.5 cm and the animal weighs 230–340 g. The prints are small; the front foot has four toes and the tracks are about 1.8 cm long and 1.2 cm wide; the hind foot has five toes, the tracks are about 2 cm long and 1.3 cm wide.

    European Sousliks live in large family groups in open grassland, where they are active during the day but spend the night in large underground tunnels. The entrance holes...

  64. Black Rat
    (pp. 188-188)

    The Black Rat, also known as the Ship Rat, is found close to humans, even more frequently than Brown Rat. Black Rat is often brought by ships to port cities, and then takes up residence in storage buildings, grain and food warehouses, silos, stables, etc. It can often be found in attics.

    Compared to Brown Rat, Black is better at climbing and jumping, and can move very quickly on roof beams and rafters and from house to house using cables and wires. Black Rats do not dig tunnels in the earth, and they don’t like to swim, which is why...

  65. Brown Rat
    (pp. 189-191)

    Brown Rats can be found wherever humans live, and many places nearby, including sewers, farms, dumps, and railroad facilities, as well as ports and along rivers and streams, near lakes, ponds, canals, and beaches, and in bird colonies. In autumn, rats living in more exposed areas look for a winter home. Brown Rats live in family groups that can become very large.

    Brown Rats are about 21–29 cm long; a female weighs about 200 g, males are somewhat heavier at 250–300 g, and in some cases more than 500 g. The coat is greyish brown above and greyish...

  66. House Mouse
    (pp. 192-194)

    House Mouse is a true mouse. It inhabits human settlements and can live and multiply in enclosed spaces, even under extreme conditions, for example, in cold-storage rooms with temperatures below freezing. It can survive for long periods without water.

    House Mouse has two morphs—dark and light. The light morph is light grey to greyish brown on its back and light grey to white on its belly, and is common in eastern Europe. The dark morph is dark grey to greyish black on the back, and is especially widespread in western Europe.

    In summer, the light morph is found near...

  67. Yellow-necked Mouse
    (pp. 195-198)

    Yellow-necked Mouse is a true mouse. It has an orange-brown back clearly distinct from its chalk-white belly. Distinguishing marks are its size and the yellowish brown patch on its lower throat that broadens to a wider patch between the front legs.

    Yellow-necked Mouse is almost twice the size of a House Mouse. It is frequently confused with Wood Mouse, which is greyish brown above and greyish white below. Wood Mouse has a restricted area of colour on the lower throat instead of the yellowish brown patch, and its snout is not as long.

    Yellow-necked Mouse has large eyes and ears,...

  68. Wood Mouse
    (pp. 199-200)

    The Wood Mouse is another true mouse and resembles a small Yellow-necked Mouse. It has large eyes and ears, is greyish brown above, and greyish white below. It can be distinguished from Yellow-necked Mouse by its somewhat shorter tail. It has an elongated yellowish brown spot between its front legs; Yellow-necked Mouse has a continuous yellowish brown band.

    Wood Mice are 7.5–10.5 cm long and weigh 8–28 g; the tail is 7–9.5 cm long, so a little shorter than the body.

    In spite of its name, in northern Europe you usually find Wood Mice in open landscapes,...

  69. Striped Field Mouse
    (pp. 200-201)

    The Striped Field Mouse gets its name from the pronounced black stripe extending down its back from its ears to its tail. Northern Birch Mouse also has a black stripe on its back but this extends all the way to its eyes. The tail of the Striped Field Mouse is shorter than its body, whereas the tail of a Northern Birch Mouse is longer than its body.

    In summer, Striped Field Mice are a rich brown; in winter, somewhat lighter. They are 9.5–12 cm long; the tail is 6.5–9 cm long, about two-thirds the length of the body....

  70. Harvest Mouse
    (pp. 202-203)

    The Harvest Mouse is 5.5–7.5 cm long, the tail is 5–7 cm long, and the animal weighs 5–9 g. In summer it is yellowish brown above, white underneath. In winter it is a dark orange-brown and has a greyish belly; at the root of the tail and on the back of the legs it is ochre-coloured. The eyes and ears are relatively small.

    Harvest Mice usually live in cereal fields and areas with tall grass, as well as reed belts, the borders of fields, woodland edges, and hedgerows. Harvest Mice usually stay in vegetation, using the long...

  71. Northern Birch Mouse
    (pp. 204-204)

    Northern Birch Mouse is greyish brown with a narrow black stripe along its back, extending from the tail over the head to the eyes; the tail is also significantly longer than the body—up to 1.5 times as long. The Striped Field Mouse has a similar black stripe on its back, but this extends only to the forehead; moreover, the tail of the Striped Field Mouse is shorter than its body, and, overall, Striped Field is almost twice the size of Northern Birch.

    Northern Birch Mouse is as large as a Harvest Mouse, 5–7 cm long; the tail is...

  72. Common Dormouse
    (pp. 205-206)

    Common Dormouse, also known as Hazel Dormouse, is the same size as a House Mouse. It has a short snout and long whiskers, large, dark eyes, and hairy ears. Its body is compact, 6 cm long, and it weighs 15–40 g, a little more in autumn. It is reddish or orange-brown above and yellowish brown below with a white throat and chest. The tail is 5.5–7.5 cm long. The long hair gives the animals something of a bushy appearance.

    Common Dormouse lives in deciduous and mixed woodland with thick and varied underbrush but may also be found in...

  73. Garden Dormouse
    (pp. 207-208)

    Garden Dormouse is easy to identify. It is 10–17 cm long and weighs 50–100 g, somewhat more in autumn. It is greyish brown above, white below. The ears are very large, and it has an extensive dark spot around the eyes and under the ears.

    The tail is 9–15 cm long and covered with short, thick hairs, which end in a tuft at the tip. The front upperparts of the body are greyish brown, black further down its back. The tail is white underneath, with a white tip.

    Garden Dormice are usually found in conifer forest and...

  74. Edible Dormouse
    (pp. 209-210)

    Edible Dormouse gets its name from the days of ancient Rome, when they were fattened in special earthenware containers before being eaten. Edible Dormouse is a relatively large animal, about 12–20 cm long and weighing 70– 250 g. It is silver grey above and white or slightly yellow below. The area around the large and prominent eyes is dark. The tail is 11–16 cm long and very bushy. Except for the Edible Dormouse colour, this dormouse resembles a squirrel.

    As with other dormice, Edible Dormouse is largely nocturnal but may be seen at dusk. Edible Dormouse is very...

  75. Bank Vole
    (pp. 211-212)

    The Bank Vole has a greyish brown back; the undersides are greyish white. It is heavy for a vole and weighs 11–30 g and is 8–12.5 cm long; the tail measures 3.5–7 cm, so usually about half the body length. Despite its weight it is relatively slim, has large eyes and a tail that is longer than that of Common Vole, sometimes up to two-thirds of the body length.

    Bank Voles prefer deciduous or mixed woodland with thick ground cover and piles of brushwood, but they also live in conifer forest with clearings and damper areas. They...

  76. Field Vole
    (pp. 213-214)

    Field Voles look very similar to Common Voles. Like other voles, Field Vole has a short tail, short legs, a rounded head, and ears that are almost entirely covered by fur. This vole is about 9.5–13.5 cm long, the tail 3–4.5 cm, and it weighs 19–52 g. It is dark brown above, the belly is white, and the tail also has a light underside.

    Field Voles live in open areas with tall, thick grass. When Field Vole inhabits the same areas as Common, Field will prefer damper areas, while Common favours drier areas with shorter grass. Field...

  77. Common Vole
    (pp. 215-215)

    Common Vole resembles Field Vole so closely that it is almost impossible to tell them apart, but Common is somewhat smaller overall and a little more yellowish brown on the upperparts. Common Vole is about 9.5–12 cm long and the tail measures 3–4.5 cm; it weighs 14–46 g.

    Common Vole eats mainly grass and can be found in drier areas than those favoured by Field Vole. It lives where the plant cover is not too tall and thick and can therefore be found in grassy fields, gardens, and parks. Common Vole digs larger underground tunnel systems than...

  78. Norway Lemming
    (pp. 216-217)

    The Norway Lemming is also known simply as Lemming; it is easily identified by the black on top of its head and upper back, as well as by the two orange spots on its ears. The lower back is reddish brown with black stripes in the middle and on both sides of the body; the undersides are grey.

    It is 7–15.5 cm long and the tail is 1.5–2 cm long; it weighs up to 110 g.

    Norway Lemmings inhabit rocky heathland areas above the treeline, and in summer are found near water and in moorland. They dig large...

  79. Wood Lemming
    (pp. 218-218)

    Wood Lemmings are greyish black on the upperparts with a rust-brown area on the back; the undersides are somewhat lighter. Wood Lemmings are 6.5–11.5 cm long, the tail measures 0.9–1.8 cm, and the animal weighs 10–45 g.

    Wood Lemmings are found in moorland and damp conifer forest (particularly spruce) with thick moss. They feed mainly on moss and lichens, but also eat grass, reeds, and horsetails. Their tracks resemble those of other voles, especially those of Norway Lemming. The scat can be light green when really fresh, about 8 mm long; older scat is yellowish brown. Wood...

  80. Grey-sided Vole
    (pp. 219-219)

    Grey-sided Vole is a little larger than Bank Vole, but has a shorter tail and ears and stronger reddish colouration on the back. The sides of the body and the cheeks are grey, the belly light grey. It is 9–13.5 cm long, and the tail measures 2.5–4 cm, so about one-quarter of the body length. This vole weighs 20–50 g. Grey-sided is somewhat slow and clumsy, but compared with Common can climb relatively well.

    Grey-sided Voles occur in the higher mountain regions of Scandinavia, especially in conifer and birch forest. They are active throughout the day. They...

  81. Root Vole
    (pp. 220-220)

    Root Vole is the largest vole in Scandinavia. It resembles Common Vole, but is a little larger, darker on the upper side, and has a distinct bicoloured tail that is dark above and light below. Root Vole is about 10–15 cm long, with a 3–6 cm tail, and weighs 20–75 g.

    It lives in swampy or very damp areas with dense vegetation, as well as in meadows and near ponds up to coastal regions, but may also live in wet woodland, moorland, and near lakes and flowing water, but it looks for drier regions in autumn. It...

  82. Common Mole
    (pp. 221-222)

    The Common Mole eats mostly earthworms and a variety of insects. It has a cylindrical body, without a visible neck, and is optimised for life below ground. It is 12–17 cm long with a 2.1–3.2 cm tail; the female weighs 60–90 g, the male 90–115 g. Common Moles have a black, velvety soft, bear-like coat that grows at right angles to the body. This is why they can move just as well both backwards and forward in their tunnels.

    The mole has long feeler hairs on its pale red snout and the tip of its tail,...

  83. Western Hedgehog
    (pp. 223-225)

    You cannot mistake a hedgehog—the upperparts are covered with 5,000–7,000 quills about 2–3 cm long and 2 mm thick. On its underside, Western Hedgehog has stiff brown hairs. If the animal feels threatened, it can tightly curl itself into a round ball, in this way protecting the whole body with the quills.

    Western Hedgehog is 20–30 cm long, with a 3 cm tail, and weighs about 0.8–1.5 kg; it is heaviest in autumn, shortly before hibernation. Males are somewhat larger than females.

    Western Hedgehogs are active from dusk until dawn. They make a lot of...

  84. Algerian Hedgehog
    (pp. 226-226)

    Algerian Hedgehog has longer legs than Western Hedgehog, and the quills on its head are separated by an area of no spines. It has larger ears, and the coat and spines are lighter than those of Western Hedgehog. It is found in similar habitats but is restricted in distribution to small areas of France and Spain. It also leaves tracks similar to those of Western Hedgehog; however, it does not hibernate....

  85. Common Shrew
    (pp. 226-228)

    The Common Shrew is the most abundant shrew species in Europe. It feeds on insects and invertebrates, particularly earthworms. Common Shrew is a little smaller than Water Shrew; it is 5.5–8.5 cm long, with a 3–5.5 cm tail, and it weighs 4–16 g. As is the case with other shrew species, the head is elongated and narrow and has long feeler hairs.

    Common Shrews are tricoloured, with a reddish brown back, a greyish white belly, and a third, transitional colour between these two areas. The tail is covered with short hairs and dark on the upper side...

  86. Bats
    (pp. 229-230)

    About 30 species of bats are resident in Europe, and it is practically impossible to tell them apart from their tracks. They are all nocturnal and catch insects in flight; all species hibernate.

    During the day they roost in attics, cellars, holes in rocks, caves, hollow trees, woodpecker cavities, nest boxes, bat boxes, and other quiet places; they also hibernate at many of the same sites.

    If you are lucky you might find bat tracks on the ground, for example, on muddy shores or wet woodland paths. The hind foot of a bat has five toes with powerful claws that...

  87. Horses
    (pp. 231-231)

    The horse is a highly specialised mammal, adapted to living on grassland and plains where it can move at great speed. The second and fourth toes are completely missing; thus all four feet have only one toe, equivalent to the third toe of other mammal species. Horses step on the outermost part of the foot and have a distinctive hoof enclosing a small pad.

    The footprints are essentially circular and cannot be confused with other tracks when the animal is wearing horseshoes. Since horses are heavy animals, the prints are easily recognisable. Depending on the size of the horse and...

  88. Cattle
    (pp. 232-232)

    Cattle, like deer, have two toes. so their tracks can be confused with those of deer, especially Elk. But cattle normally graze together in meadows, so you will always find numerous tracks in one place; they also trample distinct rutted paths in fields and meadows.

    The size and shape of tracks vary greatly according to breed. Overall, they are broad and round, on average 10–12 cm long and 9–10 cm wide. The single hoof is concave at the front and convex at the back; you normally cannot see both toes in the footprints.

    Elk footprints are usually more...

  89. Wild Boar
    (pp. 233-236)

    The Wild Boar is a powerfully built animal with a compact body and large triangular head. It has strong legs and can run fast. The female, a sow, can weigh 55–100 kg; the male, the boar, is larger and normally weighs 65–150 kg, but an old male can weigh more than 200 kg. The height at the shoulder is 85–100 cm.

    Wild Boar prefer mixed deciduous woodland with swamps and water holes, often with a mix of fields, meadows, or moorland nearby. Sows and young live in herds; the males are solitary except during the mating season...

  90. Elk
    (pp. 237-240)

    Elk are the largest species of deer in Europe, and on account of their size alone cannot be confused with other animals. The coat is dark brown to almost completely black; the legs are lighter, especially in females. The ears are large and mobile.

    A full-grown female can reach a height at the shoulder of 170–180 cm, the male about 180–220 cm; Elk are 2–3 m in length, and the relatively short tail is about 10 cm long. There is a slight hump on the back. The large upper lip juts over the lower jaw, and a...

  91. Red Deer
    (pp. 241-245)

    Red Deer is the second largest deer species in Europe; only Elk is larger. The female, the doe, is smaller than the male. Female Red Deer are slightly less than 2 m in length, and weigh 60–120 kg. The stag is slightly more than 2 m long and weighs, on average, 140–150 kg, but can weigh up to 240 kg.

    Red Deer are 120–140 cm tall at the shoulder, with a tail about 15 cm long. The coat is yellowish brown, but in the area around the tail is a light reddish yellow.

    Red Deer have a...

  92. White-tailed Deer
    (pp. 246-246)

    White-tailed Deer have a reddish brown coat with a whitish throat and belly. The inside of the ears is white, and there is a white ring around the eyes and snout. White-tailed Deer are a little larger than Fallow Deer and somewhat smaller than Red Deer; they measure 90–105 cm at the shoulder, weigh 50–135 kg, and are about 115–170 cm long, with a relatively long tail of 15–28 cm, which is brownish above and white below. When running, the animal raises its tail, and the white area on the underside becomes visible.

    The stag is...

  93. Fallow Deer
    (pp. 247-249)

    Fallow Deer prefer open deciduous and mixed forest with clearings and luxuriant underbrush, often near fields and grassland. Fallow Deer are 130–160 cm long, with a 20 cm tail, which is longer than that of other deer species. The area around the tail is white and demarcated above and on the sides by a clear black border. Fallow Deer measure 85–110 cm at the shoulder; the doe is smaller than the stag. The doe weighs 30–50 kg, the stag, 60–110 kg. At the start of the summer, adult deer have large, shovel-shaped antlers, which are ultimately...

  94. Sika Deer
    (pp. 250-250)

    Sika Deer were introduced to Europe from eastern Asia in the mid-nineteenth century. They are medium-sized, smaller and more slender than Fallow Deer, but larger than Roe Deer. They are 120–140 cm long, with a 10–15 cm tail. At the shoulder they measure 80–85 cm. The female weighs 28–40 kg, the stag 40–55 kg. Sika Deer have small and minimally branched antlers with a maximum of 4 points (ends) on each branch. The antlers are shed each year in April/May; the velvet on new antlers is rubbed off in August/September.

    In summer a Sika Deer’s...

  95. Reeve’s Muntjac
    (pp. 251-252)

    Reeve’s Muntjac is a relatively small and compact species, introduced to some European countries from Southeast Asia. The deer vocalize quite loudly and for this reason are also known as Barking Deer.

    Muntjac are light brown on the back and sides and light coloured on the inside of the legs, and they have a light-coloured spot in the area around the tail, visible only when the tail is raised. They have a black V-shaped marking on the face, from the rear of the nose to the pedicles of the antlers. The buck has small, forkshaped antlers that rise from long...

  96. Roe Deer
    (pp. 253-257)

    Roe Deer is one of the smallest deer in Europe, 95–135 cm long, with a 2–4 cm tail, mostly obscured by the coat. It is 65–75 cm at the shoulder, and males are larger than females. In much of Europe, Roe Deer weigh 20–25 kg; in northern Scandinavia, they can weigh up to 35 kg.

    The summer coat is reddish brown on the sides and back, the belly somewhat lighter. The winter coat is greyish brown and significantly thicker; the coat of some Roe Deer can be dark brown, almost black. The buck has small antlers,...

  97. Reindeer
    (pp. 258-260)

    Truly wild Reindeer are now very rare, with only one significant population in the Hardangervidda of the Dovrefjell-Rondane region in Norway, some small populations in Finland, as well as a population of ‘wood’ Reindeer, a long-legged race, in eastern Finland; the remaining wild populations have interbred almost completely with domesticated animals.

    Reindeer have a dark, greyish brown coat in summer, which becomes lighter in winter. The belly is white, and the tail and surrounding area are also white. The front part of the body including the neck beard is whitish.

    Reindeer are 185–220 cm long, 90–110 cm high...

  98. Musk Ox
    (pp. 261-262)

    Musk Ox is a polar animal, introduced from northeastern Greenland to the Dovrefjell-Rondane region of Norway, from which it has expanded into the Härje valley in Sweden.

    It is related to sheep and goats and has a compact body with a small hump above the shoulders, a large, wide head, large dark eyes, and small pointed ears, almost completely covered by fur. The tail is very small and covered by fur.

    The animal is covered with coarse hair, up to 50 cm long, that reaches its feet; beneath this it has a lighter, softer undercoat that can be spun into...

  99. Mouflon
    (pp. 263-264)

    The Mouflon comes from Corsica and Sardinia. It has been introduced into nature parks and other captive environments in many places in Europe and has spread in the wild as individuals have escaped. The male, the ram, is larger than the female and has large spiral-shaped horns with deep diagonal grooves.

    It is difficult to separate the tracks of deer and Mouflon. Mouflon have long, slender hooves; the front pair is markedly splayed even when moving normally. The hoof is pointed at the front. The hooves are kept close together on the hind legs, and the hind prints are more...

  100. Chamois
    (pp. 265-265)

    Chamois are dark brown in winter, and lighter in summer. A Chamois can reach up to 130 cm long and 80 cm at the shoulder; the tail is 10–15 cm long. The face is light with a dark stripe from the mouth to the eyes, as well as a longer and broader stripe on the throat. The small, thick tail is black, the area around the tail light. Both males and females have short horns that kink backwards towards their tips.

    The footprints are about 4.5 cm wide and 6.5 cm long; the points of the hooves splay significantly....

  101. Domestic sheep
    (pp. 266-266)

    Domestic sheep are normally kept fenced in, but on the Faroe Islands, Iceland, and in the Scottish Highlands, northern Scandinavia, and many small islands, you also find that sheep are more or less free-living animals. Sheep always live in flocks, no matter their size, and you will almost always find hair wherever they have been.

    The tracks of sheep resemble those of Roe Deer, but are wider and more rectangular, the front part of the print often significantly rounded; they are 5–6 cm long, 4–5 cm wide, and the prints of the dew claws are never visible....

  102. Goats
    (pp. 267-267)

    Goats are usually tethered or fenced in. The hoof prints are larger than those of sheep, rounded at the ends, and narrower in the front than in back. The front part of the hoof is significantly splayed, 4.5–6 cm wide and up to 3–4.5 cm long. The dew claw leaves no print.

    Goats are very agile and can climb into trees and bushes. They can feed extensively on branches and tree trunks.

    Goat scat is smaller than that of sheep, cylindrical, about 1 cm in diameter, and flat at the ends....

  103. Seals
    (pp. 268-268)

    You can find eight species of seals on European coastlines. Their tracks are almost identical, and it is practically impossible to tell which species has left them; only their size gives a clue.

    Seals move forward with their front flippers; the hind flippers are not used when moving on land, so you see only the tracks of the front flippers and the body as it is dragged across the ground. You find seal tracks on muddy beaches, on sandy soil, and on snow-covered ice.

    The front flipper has five toes each with a powerful claw; the prints are very large,...

  104. Sea turtles
    (pp. 269-269)

    Two different species of sea turtles breed on the coasts of the Mediterranean: Loggerhead Turtle, Caretta caretta, and Green Sea Turtle, Chelonia mydas. Occasionally you can find their tracks on a beach if they have crawled there to lay eggs, normally at night. Sea turtles use only their front flippers when moving on land, and the prints appear as deep holes in the sand but with no claw marks, lying to the side of the broad drag marks left by the shell.

    If the turtle is undisturbed, you will find a mound of sand at the end of the tracks...

  105. Photo credits
    (pp. 270-270)
  106. Index of species
    (pp. 271-275)