Tracking pit

In the middle school Ecojustice class this morning, one of the things we did was to make a tracking pit. Lorraine brought some mud that got dug up from her yard (if you want to be technical, it’s a clay-like soil composed of Quaternary alluvial deposits). Some of us worked on moistening the mud till it got to the right consistency, then spreading it out on a flat spot under some bushes:

Spreading the mud

We put a bait cup in the middle of the mud, then crumbled a granola bar into the bait cup. By this evening, the bait was gone, and there were plenty of squirrel tracks in the mud:

Squirrel tracks

The tracks were not as distinct as I would have liked. The mud was a little too wet, and the suqirrels slipped and slid just enough to blur the finer details of their tracks. Nevertheless, these are some pretty good tracks!