Who Done It?

Sandy River, OR

In late November I encountered these tracks in one of the flood channels along the Sandy River.

Photo by Dennis Deck

Who made these tracks? [ View Answer ]


We see three sets of tracks with a diagonal stride. These were made by a moderate sized animal, with a large 5-toed hind foot obscuring the front feet. The gait is noticeably pigeon toed. This is about as clear as beaver tracks get. The webbing prevents their toes from sinking in too far and they usually obscure their own tracks when their tail drags or if they drag sticks to the water to feed. In fact the absence of drag marks on beaver tracks heading back to the water would be worthy of a closer look.

As for aging, the two tracks on the left were made prior to a light rain overnight while the one on the right was likely made that morning. The disturbed sand is drying quickly and shows up well in the right track.

I did not have time to verify how many individual beaver passed here but note that the stride of the left track is slightly shorter than the other two.

[ View Question ] - [ Return to Menu ]