Footprints in the sand

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8 years 2 months ago #37361 by spoook
Taking a walk along a beach between Okura and Stillwater I came across these prints around a rock.

No prints leading up to them or away from tells me it is a bird.
The prints seem to have 4 claws and pads on the feet.
There were holes in the sand maybe from a beak searching for feed.

Anyone any idea what they are?

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There are no bad questions only those that are not asked.
"You are responsible, forever, for what you have tamed"

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8 years 2 months ago #484864 by Ruth
Replied by Ruth on topic Footprints in the sand
Flying possum. Definitely not a bird!

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8 years 2 months ago #484869 by muri
Replied by muri on topic Footprints in the sand
stoats

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8 years 2 months ago #484870 by tonic
Replied by tonic on topic Footprints in the sand
a little dog? put down for a brief explore then picked up again? def not a bird...

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8 years 2 months ago #484871 by muri
Replied by muri on topic Footprints in the sand
not a stoat either, their paws are more compact
i would say probably a small dog too, as it has quite definite long claws

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8 years 2 months ago #484875 by stephclark
Replied by stephclark on topic Footprints in the sand
I agree on the small dog theory.. its claws are very long and seem to have splayed and twisted the toes, making the foot print wider..

it was probably carried over the rocks and put down when on sand..

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8 years 2 months ago #484876 by stephclark
Replied by stephclark on topic Footprints in the sand
of course you did say there were not prints.. does that include people foot prints..
if only the ones in your photos.. very odd

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8 years 2 months ago #484880 by stumac
Replied by stumac on topic Footprints in the sand
Too many toes for a dog and the claws look too sharp. Possum maybe?

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8 years 2 months ago #484887 by Stikkibeek
Replied by Stikkibeek on topic Footprints in the sand
Dogs only have four toes all pointing forward. Possums have 5 toes, one of which is a "thumb" which is a little wider than the other toes. Other possibility is a hedgehog which also has 5 toes, but I think prints may be too big for hedgehog (hard to tell size) I'd say definitely a possum.
Given that there seems to be a wider claw mark on the inner side of each print, my money's on possum

Did you know, that what you thought I said, was not what I meant :S

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8 years 2 months ago #484889 by WillEyre
Replied by WillEyre on topic Footprints in the sand
It's definitely not a Koala.

I liked Occam's Razor so much, I bought the company.

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8 years 2 months ago #484890 by igor
Replied by igor on topic Footprints in the sand
and it's not an elephant either.

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8 years 2 months ago #484892 by Hawkspur
Replied by Hawkspur on topic Footprints in the sand
In searching for possum paw prints, I came across an amusing account of dealing with possums. It is Australian, so doesn't recommend the usual NZ methods:
whyology.blogspot.co.nz/2012/01/in-urban...s-of-south-east.html

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8 years 2 months ago #484897 by igor
Replied by igor on topic Footprints in the sand
Brilliant, Hawkspur.
We had possums in the roof in our previous house but most of the time they caused no trouble. I did trap a few when we first moved there but more would move in pretty much straight away so I stopped. They usually only made a noise going out and coming back in. There was one living in the roof of my library at our current house but I haven't seen it for a while so I think it's gone.

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8 years 2 months ago #484898 by spoook
Replied by spoook on topic Footprints in the sand
Definitely not dogs. Apart from the fact there were no other prints, human or otherwise, this is a marine reserve area and also in the middle of a large area where dogs are not allowed. The walk is 8km and this is just over half way. The day I walked this there were hardly any other people around, maybe 4 on the while walk. Heavenly [:I]
The NZ dotterel is nesting a small distance from these prints and there are signs everywhere forbidding dogs for a long distance well before you get to these prints. No, I do not think anyone was disobeying the rules. [;)]

I too ruled out elephants and koala, along with a long list of other likely footed creature, some were excluded purely by geographical location. [}:)]

I would not think possum as it was in an area where the only herbage would be way up the cliff. Plus, how did it get there?? Maybe I have found the first prints of a flying possum,that loves shellfish. They just did not seem deep enough for the crash landing I would gave expected for such an arboreal marsupial.

Common birds in this area would be pied stilt, oystercatcher, NZ dotterel, heron, seagull and spur winged plover. None of which do I believe to have padded feet with what appears to be claws.

The rock would only be uncovered when tide is out so could be a home to all sorts of tasty food for a long beaked feeder.

There are no bad questions only those that are not asked.
"You are responsible, forever, for what you have tamed"

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8 years 2 months ago #484900 by muri
Replied by muri on topic Footprints in the sand
How many legs do crabs have

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