Backyard Almanac: A lack of heavy snow provides greater access to "aut-win" activity in nature.

Nov 22, 2019

Muskrat tracks in shallow snow
Credit © USFWS Midwest Region

Grey November is upon us.  After the cold spell earlier this month ten degrees lower than normal, temps in the Northland have now risen back to typical November levels. 

The last thirty days have yielded less than one inch of snow.  

This may be not so good for wild critters looking for safe ground cover, but it does provide a great opportunity to witness evidence of their movements.  Naturalist and author Larry Weber has noticed the usual footprints of deer, squirrels and rabbits.  But he has also found tracks left by mink, weasels, porcupines, raccoons, and muskrats! 

Many birds are on the move, but Larry says he is still waiting for evidence of winter finches, such as redpolls and pine grosbeaks.