Predators in the Park

Over the summer, we have found traces of a large number of predators in our park.  Although it may seem strange to have so many predators in such a developed area, our trail cameras have captured shots of raccoons, foxes, possums, coyotes, and even bobcats!

Back in April, we had a trail camera set up near the chicken coop, and we managed to catch a shot of a coyote walking in the direction of the cabin we are stationed in!  We have since found additional evidence of the coyote’s presence when the wing of a heron was found over by the sewer line.

The bobcat was spotted on our camera in late April between our Inner and Outer loop trails.  Although we had found tracks before, that we thought could potentially be a bobcat, we were never sure due to the small size of the paws.  However, the trail camera cleared our doubts, showing us that there is indeed a bobcat that at times roams the area around here.  Bobcats can have territories that range anywhere between 6 and 60 square miles depending on gender, population density, and prey species density, so we are not yet sure if it is frequent to this area or not.

Multiple possums and raccoons were captured on the trail camera in the swamp as well as one grey fox. As some of you may know, we sadly lost three of our young chickens in the past few weeks, and as a result, we decided to put a trail camera near the chicken run once again to try to catch the culprit.  So far we have spotted a raccoon and an unknown (likely grey) fox lurking around the outside of the run.   Luckily for the chickens, they were safe in their coop at the time, but one of our turtles, Shelly, can be seen looking out the fence at the fox!  She’s a very daring turtle.

-Lauren Norris, summer intern 2012