As related in another post, our son and his family live far to the north, on the side of a large mountain with many different habitats – the valley at its base, on its slopes and up on the peak. For several years I’ve had camera traps on their property to capture photos of the wildlife that inhabits the area. The predators are my primary interest, but there are other species of interest there as well.
Eastern coyotes, also called coywolves because they’re a hybrid between coyotes and Algonquin wolves, are frequent visitors both winter and summer –
They sometimes come in a family group of parents and offspring that hunt together –
The eastern coyotes are attracted by a small twig dipped in beaver castoreum and placed upright in a hummock of moss in front of the camera trap. The castoreum also attracts fishers year ‘round –
Some people call these animals “fisher cats” but they’re not cats, they’re actually species of weasel. And many of those same people seem to think that fishers are a threat to man and beast. Yes they’re predators, but they’re only a threat to porcupines, squirrels, grouse and similar sized prey –
As in most places, raccoons are frequent visitors –
A species I’ve never gotten on camera in northcentral Pennsylvania is the red fox. So I’ve been glad to get quite a few photos of red fox on these camera traps even though this extensive woodland would not usually be considered red fox habitat -
Large wooded areas are more to the liking of gray fox; which, surprisingly, have only appeared a few times -
A barred owl, that certainly hadn't smelled the beaver castoreum, landed in front of the camera –
Those cameras have also gotten photos of white-tailed deer –
And wild turkeys –
The camera traps on our son and daughter-in-law’s property have produced a lot of good photos, we’ll see what the future holds.