Thursday 7 January 2016

A snowshoe outing

Took lots of photos in the open hardwood  on the Medonte Moraine above/west of Orillia today.
Saw lot of tracks like these;

They reminded me of some tracks alledgedly from deer mice that I saw on a guided tour from the Visitors' Centre, Algonquin Park, Feb 2013:

(My old Pentax)

Then I was told that deer mice hibernate in winter. So I did what anyone might do today: I consulted some references:

Deer mice are active year round and do not hibernate during the winter.

The deer mouse is nocturnal, and is most active at twilight. Winter activity takes place mainly under snow rather than on its surface, and sever cold may limit travel to the vicinity of the nest, or restrict activity to the nest for a few days.

The deer mouse is a nocturnal feeder on a wide range of nuts and seeds, and when this sort of food is abundant it is stored for leaner times, because deer mice are active all winter.

"Deer Mouse." The Gale Encyclopedia of Science. 2008. 7 Jan. 2016

I conclude that deer mice do not hibernate.

And maybe owls would confirm this but this bird had headed south, maybe?

I could not believe this either so I continued to search

This is from Audubon

 Thanks to Sharon and especiall my guide, Ron for a delightful outing.



  1. Hi Bill,
    I've seen wing "tracks" but nothing as spectacular as you found- lovely. Thanks for sharing. Norrie

  2. Have to thank Ron for finding me in the woods and taking me past this spot - and pointing it out to me. It took me several glances before I realized what I was seeing. I have since wonder how many km have I travelled in woods on skiis and snowshoes - literally 100s of km - and this is my first? Norrie, how many have you seen? And after how many km? You have ideal woodlands too. My regular outings were in the Eifel/Ardenne, Germany, and Grants Woods and the Ganaraska trail west of Rugby. Since maybe 1975. I think I must be blind as an observer!