Home Field and Swamp: Animals and Their Habitats

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Archived-by-Date Pages

(Mostly) Wild Mammals (class Mammalia, subphylum Vertebrata, phylum Chordata, kingdom Animalia, domain Eukaryota)

California Sea Lions (Zalophus californianus, family Otariidae, suborder Caniformia, order Carnivora, infraclass Eutheria, subclass Theria)

Sea lions (definitely not two males) taking it easy, San Francisco, CA, 8/6/07 Male sea lions jostling for position, San Francisco, CA, 8/6/07 The same male sea lions after all was settled and decided, San Francisco, CA, 8/6/07

Mule Deer (Odocoileus hemionus, subfamily Capreolinae, family Cervidae, order Artiodactyla, Eutheria infraclass, Theria subclass)

Mule Deer doe and fawns, Angel Island, Marin County, CA, 10/4/12 Mule Deer stag, Angel Island, Marin County, CA, 10/4/12          

White-tailed Deer (Odocoileus virginianus, subfamily Capreolinae, family Cervidae, order Artiodactyla, Eutheria infraclass, Theria subclass)

White-tailed Deer, in a Durham, NC front yard, 9/20/11. White-tailed Deer, Third Fork Trail, Durham, NC, 7/25/11.  This doe was not afraid of people and came close to the trail. White-tailed Deer fawn peeking at me from under its mother, Durham, NC, 10/7/11 White-tailed Deer family, Johnston Mill Nature Preserve, 4/13/06.  Nice camouflage! White-tailed Deer, Eno River SP, Old Cole Mill Road access, 6/15/06.  This was apparently a doe; a fawn ran through the woods farther away. White-tailed Deer, Great Dismal Swamp State Park, Camden County, NC, 12/19/08

White-tailed Deer doe and fawn, Zebulon, NC, 8/08.  Photo by Cindy Privette. Deer, Goose Creek State Park, Beaufort County, NC, 3/12/12.  It was hiding behind a bush.  

Coyote (Canis latrans)

Coyote, one of two that ran across the road between two wooded areas in Diamondhead, MS, 10/17/10.          

Southern Short-tailed Shrew (Blarina carolinensis, Blarinellini tribe, Soricinae subfamily, Soricidae family)

Southern Short-tailed Shrew, showing vestigial eye Same Southern Short-tailed Shrew, showing foot Same Southern Short-tailed Shrew, showing everything but its furry tail Same Southern Short-tailed Shrew          

Raccoons (Procyon Iotor)

The right birdfeeder can help you get great raccoon photos if you can't get to a wild place like South Lido Park in Florida.

Young raccoon, Durham, NC, 7/6/09, attempting to get at a bird feeder. Young raccoon that came to visit the birdfeeders late at night, Durham, NC, 12/1/12 Young raccooms leaving the birdfeeder area, Durham, NC, 12/1/12 Raccoon, South Lido Park, Sarasota area, FL, 2/10/03.  Raccoons here are abundant and often wander down the street to local hotels, generally at night. Raccoon, Durham, 5/24/05 (12:04 am).  This one was caught not only red-handed but in an awkward position for escape.  Note the hand-like left hind paw.

Virginia Opossum (Didelphis virginiana)

Virginia Opossum (Didelphis virginiana), seen at 10 pm, Durham, NC, 9/2/12 Virginia Opossum (Didelphis virginiana), looking in the direction of bird feeders.  Durham, NC, 12/20/10 Virginiana Opossum (Didelphis virginiana) turning around when being observed          

Eastern Cottontail Rabbit (Sylvilagus floridanus)

Rabbit, Durham, 7/4/05 Marsh Rabbit, Pine Knoll Shores, Carteret County, NC, 7/23/08, was eating leaves

Eastern Chipmunks (Tamias striatus)

We in the Piedmont are at the edge of the Eastern Chipmunk range according to the 2005 report North Carolina Gap Analysis Project: Species Report: Eastern Chipmunk (Tamias striatus).  The link to this site was furnished by Jean Bohs of Durham County, NC, who has also provided one of the photos below.

Many people in Piedmont NC have reported seeing them in residential neighborhoods.  However, Harry LeGrand says that he has seen very few in natural areas around here.

Eastern Chipmunk, Moses Cone Memorial Park, Watauga County, NC, 6/6/17 Eastern Chipmunk, Peaks of Otter, Bedford County, VA,  8/22/18 Eastern Chipmunk, Johnston Mill Nature Preserve, Orange County, NC, 2/7/09. This was my first sighting of an Eastern Chipmunk in the Piedmont.  Hilton Pond has some perspectives from far northwestern South Carolina. Eastern Chipmunk, northern Durham County, NC, 3/11/06.  Photo taken by Jean Bohs of Chippy, who has showed up regularly for 5 years. 

Fox Squirrel (Sciurus niger, subfamily Sciurinae, family Sciuridae, suborder Sciuromorpha, order Rodentia, infraclass Eutheria, subclass Theria)

This Southern Fox Squirrel (S. n. niger) was larger than Gray Squirrels, and climbed a tree rather laboriously.  Note the very long tail.  This squirrel appeared in Pinehurst, Moore County, NC on 3/23/09.  


Texas Fox Squirrel (S. n. limitis), Quinta Mazatlan, McAllen, Hidalgo County, TX, 12/2/17          


Red Squirrel (Tamiasciurus hudsonicus, subfamily Sciurinae, family Sciuridae, suborder Sciuromorpha, order Rodentia, infraclass Eutheria, subclass Theria)

Red Squirrel (Tamiasciurus hudsonicus), Craggy Gardens, NC, 7/8/05.  Note the human-like ears on this squirrel.  See more information at The Great Smoky Mountains National Park's Discover Life in America page.

Eastern Gray Squirrel (Spermophilus carolinensis, subfamily Sciurinae, family Sciuridae, suborder Sciuromorpha, order Rodentia, infraclass Eutheria, subclass Theria)

The species name is based on the Animal Diversity Sciurinae page.

Eastern Gray Squirrels starting a mating ritual, Durham, NC, 12/11/12 Eastern Gray Squirrel, with a nut, Durham, NC, 10/23/11 Eastern Gray Squirrel, Durham, 1/10/06.  This squirrel was apparently building a nest. Eastern Gray Squirrel, Durham, 2/28/07, also building a nest, apparently.  Don't ask me what that mud-colored ball is for! Eastern Gray Squirrel, where squirrels should be! Durham, NC, 12/12/08 Eastern Gray Squirrel, Durham, NC, 11/7/09

Doing the sensible thing and putting a birdfeeder on a pole in the yard can deprive you of hours of free Gray Squirrel entertainment.

2/6/05.  After birdfeeder dismantling and shortly after birdfeeder repair and relocation.  A pose easily mistaken for remorse, but actually a curious searching for the source of the flashing light. Close to the door investigating potential predator.  (You've got to blink sometime!)  Return to the attack!  Stage One:  crossing over to the bird feeder. Stage Two:  Hanging by your toes, reaching the top of the bird feeder. Stage Three: reaching the bottom of the bird feeder.  Shaking it causes seeds to fall out. Upon mission completion, scrambling back to safety.

Groundhog (Marmota monax, family Sciuridae, order Rodentia)

Groundhog, Museum of Life & Science, Durham, NC, 6/18/17          

Coypu or Nutria (Myocaster coypus, tribe Myocastorini, subfamily Echimyinae, family Echimyidae, superfamily Octodontoidea, order Rodentia)

Coypu (better known as Nutria in the US), Turnbull Center, Port Aransas, Nueces County, TX, 2/20/14  

North American Beaver (Castor canadensis, family Castoridae, order Rodentia)

Beaver, Goose Creek State Park, Beaufort County, NC, 7/13/18          

Bobcat (Lynx rufus)

Bobcat, Abbott's Lagoon, Point Reyes National Seashore, Marin County, CA, 5/8/16 Same Bobcat          

Other Mammals

Cat, Ocracoke, 5/15/03.  This picture wasn't posed (and, OK, the cat probably wasn't wild.) Pony, Ocracoke Island, 5/12/04.  This sleek pony could have come out of a movie. This pony, same time and place, looks somewhat skinny.

© Copyright 2005-2019 Dorothy E. Pugh


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