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Native Californian, biologist, wildlife conservation consultant, retired Smithsonian scientist, father of two daughters, grandfather of 4 small primates. INTJ. Believes nature is infinitely more interesting than shopping malls. Born 100 years too late.

Saturday, March 22, 2008

Camera Trapping Workshop : mammal species list

Here's a list of some mammals for enrollees and prospective takers of my camera trapping workshop at SF State University's Sierra Nevada Field Campus. These species, from rare to common, are known to occur in the area. I didn't include the moles for obvious reasons (and gophers are almost as hard to photograph). Jim Steele, the station director says he is almost certain he saw a wolverine up there a few years ago.

We'll try to camera trap as many species as possible using two approaches. First, 3-4 weeks before the workshop I'll set 4 cams. That will give us about 100 camera-trap-days of effort, and we'll collect one cam per day during the workshop. Second, we'll use the other cameras to target specific species or groups of species. We'll make camera sets in specific habitats and microhabitats and check those daily too. I'll post a preliminary workshop schedule in a few days.

If you are interested in the topographic maps for the area the quads are: Gold Lake, Clio, Sierra City, and Haypress Valley. I have them on my laptop, but I'll also buy a set of hard copies.

Here are some references if you want to start researching any species of particular interest.

Mammalian Species" These excellent technical summaries published by the American Society of Mammalogists are downloadable as pdf files.

Verts, B.J. and L. Carraway. 1998. Land mammals of Oregon. University of California Press. Another excellent reference that also covers most of the California species.

Wilson, D.E. ad S Ruff. 1999. The Smithsonian Book of North American Mammals. Smithsonian Insititution Press, Washington DC. A comprehensive and outstanding treatment of all mammals in North America.

Ingles, L.G. 1965. Mammals of the Pacific States: California, Oregon, and Washington. Stanford University Press, Palo Alto. A bit out of date, but still a very useful reference.


Virginia opossum (Didelphis virginiana)


Coyote (Canis latrans)
Red fox (Vulpes fulva)
Bobcat (Lynx rufus)
Mountain lion (Felis concolor)
Black bear (Ursus americanus)
Marten (Martes americana)
Fisher (Martes pennanti)
Wolverine (Gulo luscus)
Badger (Taxidea taxus)
Long-tailed weasel (Mustela frenata)
Short-tailed weasel (Mustela erminea)
River otter (Lutra canadensis)
Striped skunk (Mephitus mephitus)
Spotted skunk (Spilogale gracilis)


Water shrew (Sorex palustris)
Marsh shrew (Sorex bendirei)
Vagrant shrew (Sorex vagrans)
Dusky shrew (Sorex obscurus)


Porcupine (Erethizon dorsatum)
Mountain beaver (Aplodontia rufa)
Beaver (Castor canadensis)
Douglas squirrel (Tamiasciurus douglasi)
Northern flying squirrel (Glaucomys sabrinus)
Golden-mantled ground squirrel (Spermophilus lateralus)
Yellow-bellied marmot (Marmota flaviventris)
Long-tailed meadow mouse (Microtus longicaudus)
Montane meadow mouse (Microtus montanus)
Deer mouse (Peromyscus maniculatus)
Brush mouse (Peromyscus boylei)
Pinyon mouse (Peromyscus truei)
Pacific jumping mouse (Zapus pacificus)
Red-bellied harvest mouse (Reithrodontomys raviventris)
Bushy-tailed woodrat (Neotoma cinerea)
Townsend's chipmunk (Tamias townsendi)
Long-eared chipmunk (Tamias quadrimaculatus)
Lodgepole chipmunk (Tamias speciosus)
Yellow pine chipmunk (Tamias amoenus)
Botta pocket gopher (Thomomys bottae)
Montane pocket gopher (Thomomys monticola)
Beechey ground squirrel (Spermophilus beecheyi sierrae)
Belding ground squirrel (Spermophilus beldingi)


Pika (Ochotona princeps)
Brsh rabbit (Sylvilagis bachmanni)
Snowshoe hare (Lepus americanus)


Black-tailed deer (Odocoileus hemionus columbianus)


Anonymous said...


Your workshop participants might want to have a look at http://www.mnh.si.edu/mna/
which is the Smithsonian North American Mammal website. It draws heavily on the Smithsonian Book of North American Mammals you reference, but also from the Field Guide to North American Mammals published by Princeton (Kays and Wilson).

The website has a nifty gis feature which allows you to click on a site on the map (your workshop site), and it will return a list of mammals that occur there. Then, with another click, it will prepare a field guide to just those species, which you can print out, complete with color photos, etc.

Seems like your workshop is the exact kind of operation that the site was designed for.

Good luck,


Camera Trap Codger said...


Wonderful, and thanks a lot for that suggestion. That was mighty thoughtful of you guys to come up with, and I hope the participants zero in on a few species to focus on.

Owlman said...

WOW, what a species list - wish I was part of the class! Have you had any success with nesting owls yet?

Camera Trap Codger said...

Owlman, Must you ask such embarrassing questions? LOL . . . I was out all day yesterday checking cams. The second prospective owl cavity proved a dud, and I moved the cam to a new cavity, but I think it's a nuthatch hole. I haven't seen any screechers around last year's nest cavity, but I haven't set up a camera there this year. I thought I would give them a rest if they dared to return.

Camera Trap Codger said...

PS to Owlman: no sign of activity at the two new owl boxes, but I have a cam set at each and will check them in two weeks.