Paul Smelter's Diary
Mammals of Nova Scotia

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June 29, 2009: Signs of life

We started the day with an introduction to the Mammals of Nova Scotia from Dr. Cristina Buesching before heading off on a walk to the local beach and coastal area to get all the team used to the terrain. On this 10 km "stroll," we learned about the various types of animal droppings we will have to keep track of and what type of mammals they are from. We'll use this information while we do our field observations and set traps for the smaller mammals tomorrow. We will have to know the difference between scat from porcupine, beaver, skunks and otters. They are all similar in size, so they have similar size waste. Being able to identify droppings will help us locate and hopefully sight one of the many mammals in this beautiful unspoiled region, and add our population data to the climate change study. The team came across coyote droppings as well some whitetail deer. We spotted one of the deer on the way back to our base.
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Paul Smelter, maintenance technician Pt Henry smelter, Victoria, Australia