What Are Some of the Easiest Animal Tracks to Identify?


Some animals with easily recognizable tracks include beavers, rabbits and black bears. Sea turtles and moose also leave distinctive tracks. Beavers leave footprints of different sizes because of their long hind feet and short front feet. The most distinctive feature of beaver tracks, though, is the drag mark their tail leaves between their footprints. Rabbits have very long hind feet and small front feet, which makes their tracks fairly easy to identify.

Rabbits also leave trails with the impressions of their four feet grouped closely together. Black bears leave distinct, curved paw prints, which stand out from other mammal tracks because of their large size. Sometimes claw prints at the tip of each toe will also be visible in bear tracks.

Sea turtles leave wave patterns made by their flippers on the beaches where they lay their eggs and where their babies hatch, often resulting in many tiny trails leading back into the ocean. Moose prints clearly show the animals' divided hooves, which can look almost like claws when captured in soft soil. Moose tracks are easy to tell apart from the tracks of other hoofed mammals, such as deer, because of their large size. Any animal tracks are easiest to spot and identify when left in mud, clay or soft soil.