The Importance of Fieldwork and Field Skills

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Great blog piece by Mark Elbroch!

Among my favorite activities is investigating mountain lion kill sites—meaning the work of actually going into the field and finding the remains of prey killed by mountain lions. We just published new research in the Journal of Mammalogy that shows that these expeditions in search of prey remains are not just enjoyable, they are also the best way to study carnivore foraging behaviors.

Every kill site is different, and some are tough to find. But over the years, I’ve begun to better predict where a cat might feel secure enough to feed and hide the remains of their prey. Flies are a great clue too—the sound and sight of them have often drawn me to a hidden carcass or a subtle area blood-flecked and sprinkled with tiny bits of tissue and bone easily overlooked. Magpies and eagles are even better, their vocalizations provide guidance from afar and if you can spot them on the ground, then you’ve found your kill.

Continue reading Mark Elbroch’s piece on his Blog

Author: keithbadger

Educator, naturalist, tracker, author, blogger, teaching primitive skills, survival skills, nature awareness, and long distance walker. Keith holds a Masters Degree (MST) from Antioch New England in Environmental Studies, and has taught at the Thayer High School in Winchester (with Dennis Littky) , NH, High Mowing School in Wilton, NH, and at Plymouth University, Plymouth, NH. Between 1992 and 2016 he created, developed, and taught the Naturalist Program at High Mowing School, before breaking with compulsory institutional education and taking a walk on the wild side.

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