THE ANIMAL TRACKERS 5 BASIC RULES
(1) One of the most important rules to go by, when you are tracking an animal, is to study each and EVERY track very carefully, even if you lose the trail, and see a track up ahead, don't yeild to your temptation. It is the track's that you don't see at the time, that will hold the key to your animal. I believe the best exercise to use for this rule, is to sit down and draw a detailed pictures of tracks you find. This will teach you to see the details that would have been missed. This will also give you a referance to use to identify the animal that you are tracking. Make sure that you include the measurments of the tracks also. These measurments will help you to estimate the size and, age of the animal your tracking.
When you have done this, try to accurately guess the age of the tracks you see. This is very simple to do. Just look for wind, rain, snow, etc. damage. If you know that it rained at 7:00 on that morning and, there is visible rain damage to the track, you can safely assume that the track was made before 7:00.
(2) The second rule to keep in mind is to look at the animals trail as a whole. When you do this you will begin to see that each track is like a "word in a sentence," if you put all of the "words" together you will come out with a story that will tell you of the animals habits, identity, and activities.
When ever you lose the trail mark the last track that you have seen and search outward in a circle from the track. Keep in mind that the animal had to go somewhere and, will continue to leave signs for you to read. Look for tracks, droppings, gnawed twigs, scrapes, fur, and feathers. If you know what type of animal your tracking you will want to keep in mind its habits also.
(3)Another important rule is to use the sun to your advantage. Remember to try to keep the track between you and the sun. In doing so the track will stand out far better. A familiar saying to almost all trackers is "The successful tracker rise's with the sun." This is because animals are more active during the early hours of dawn and, also because the sun makes long shadows early in the day and this makes the tracks stand out better.
(4) One of the best tips I can give you is to imagine that you are the animal that you are tracking. Think and move as the animal. When you lose the trail, ask yourself where you would go if you where the animal. Think of the habits that the animal your tracking has, what are the need's that must be fulfilled, for the him to survive?
(5) The last important rule is very simple. This rule is to never walk on, or destroy any tracks that you are following. If you do so you will be losing a referance that you could go back to if you lost the trail. Many times these destroyed tracks hold the key that could save you a lot of time picking up the next track.
Have any questions or tips? If so, write to me, and I will do my best to answer any questions that I can.
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