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Title: Mammals of Mount Rainier National Park
Author: Grater, Russell K., Potts, Merlin K.
Language: English
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                                MAMMALS
                                   of
                      MOUNT RAINIER NATIONAL PARK


                            MERLIN K. POTTS
                      _Assistant Park Naturalist_
                                  and
                           RUSSELL K. GRATER
                           _Park Naturalist_

                           Copyright 1949 by
                             Mount Rainier
                      Natural History Association

                              Published by
                           THE MOUNT RAINIER
                      NATURAL HISTORY ASSOCIATION
                          Longmire, Washington
                                  1949



                                FOREWORD


There are few places remaining in this country today where one may
observe wild animals in a natural setting, free to move about,
unrestricted by bars or enclosures, and exhibiting little of the
instinctive fear of man instilled through many wildlife generations by
the advance and expansion of settlement and civilization.

The national parks are among the greatest wildlife sanctuaries of the
world. Most wild creatures are quick to recognize the protection
afforded by such a refuge, and thus become less shy and elusive than
they are elsewhere. As a result of protection, it is not difficult to
attain an acquaintance with these wilderness folk.

To know Nature in her various forms is to increase appreciation of the
natural scene. It is for this purpose that _Mammals of Mount Rainier
National Park_ has been written, the third of a series published by the
Mount Rainier Natural History Association.

                            JOHN C. PRESTON
                             Superintendent
                      Mount Rainier National Park
                United States Department of the Interior



                            ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS


The writers of Mammals of Mount Rainier National Park are indebted to
the following individuals for their critical assistance and
encouragement in the preparation of the manuscript:

Dr. A. Svihla, _Zoology Department, University of Washington_,

Mr. Herbert Evison, _Chief of Information, National Park Service_,

Mr. Victor H. Cahalane, _Biologist, National Park Service_,

Mr. E. Lowell Sumner, _Regional Biologist, Region Four, National Park
Service_.

Through their constructive suggestions the finished publication has been
materially strengthened.

Photographs were obtained through the courtesy of Mount Rainier,
Yellowstone, Rocky Mountain, and Glacier National Parks; and Mr. Joseph
M. Dixon, Mr. E. Lowell Sumner, and Mr. F. J. McGrail.

                                                       _Merlin K. Potts_
                                                     _Russell K. Grater_



                                CONTENTS


                                                                   _Page_
  Foreword                                                            iii
  Acknowledgements                                                     iv
  Introduction                                                          1
  Wildlife Trends                                                       2
  Wildlife Problems                                                     3
  Life Zones of Mount Rainier                                           7
  The Mammals                                                          13
  Hypothetical List                                                    82
  Bibliography                                                         83
  Index of Common Names                                                85
  Index of Scientific Names                                            86



                             ILLUSTRATIONS


  _Page_
  Cascade mantled ground squirrel                                 _cover_
  Bench Lake, Hudsonian life zone                          _frontispiece_
  Black bear                                                            5
  Forest scene, Humid Transition life zone                              9
  Forest scene, Canadian life zone                                     10
  Paradise Valley, Hudsonian life zone                                 12
  Colonnade, Arctic-alpine life zone                                   14
  Black-tailed deer and fawns                                          15
  New-born fawn of black-tailed deer                                   16
  Mountain goat                                                        22
  Black bear and cubs                                                  24
  Cascade hoary marmot                                                 28
  Hollister chipmunk                                                   31
  Cascade mantled ground squirrel                                      33
  Douglas pine squirrel                                                35
  Cascade flying squirrel                                              37
  Beaver                                                               39
  Yellow-haired porcupine                                              45
  White-footed mouse                                                   51
  Coyote                                                               64
  Cascade red fox, “silver” phase                                      67
  Marten                                                               69
  Washington weasel                                                    72

    [Illustration: Bench Lake, Hudsonian life zone lakeshore-fireburn
    habitat. This type of cover is extensively utilized in summer by the
    coyote and black-tailed deer, and on the southern exposures by the
    Hollister chipmunk and mantled ground squirrel. The lake shore is
    favored by the water-loving shrews.]



                             THE MAMMALS OF
                      MOUNT RAINIER NATIONAL PARK



                              INTRODUCTION


In looking back through the years during which mammal studies have been
carried on at Mount Rainier, three periods stand out in which
considerable field research was accomplished. The first of these was in
July and August, 1897, when a party headed by Dr. C. Hart Merriam,
Vernon Bailey, Dr. A. K. Fisher and Walter K. Fisher made the first
field studies of the mammals of the park. Following this very important
piece of work there was a lull in field activities until the summer of
1919 when a party working under the auspices of the National Park
Service and the Bureau of Biological Survey conducted studies on the
local bird and mammal populations. In this party were such well known
scientists as Dr. Walter P. Taylor, in charge, George G. Cantwell,
Stanley G. Jewett, Professor J. B. Flett, Professor William T. Shaw,
Professor J. W. Hungate and Mr. and Mrs. William L. Finley. Upon the
completion of this study there was again a long period in which little
of a systematic nature was accomplished. The last period of note came
during the years 1934-1936 when Mr. E. A. Kitchin, a member of the
Wildlife Division of the National Park Service, supervised field studies
in various portions of the park. Many of these studies were concerned
with observational data rather than extensive collecting. For the next
few years only brief observations from members of the park staff were
added to the park records. Then, during the summer of 1947, special
studies were begun by the Naturalist Staff on the status of the mountain
goat and the problems arising from a foot disease that occurred in the
deer population. It is planned that other special studies shall be
carried on in future years, designed to clarify the status of other
important mammalian species in the park.

Because of the extensive data that have slowly accumulated through the
years since the 1919 survey, the need for a publication to bring all
information up to date has become increasingly apparent. This booklet is
designed to answer that need.

The sequence of species used brings many of the larger animals ahead of
the smaller and more obscure kinds, and thus does not in many cases
follow in systematic order. However, it is felt that the order used best
meets the needs in a publication of this type. Common names selected are
those most generally accepted for the animals in question.



                            WILDLIFE TRENDS


When the first wildlife survey was made in 1897 it is likely that the
conditions of that year came nearest to representing the original status
of the various species—a status that has changed drastically in many
instances in the years that have followed. At that time the park was
little known and the faunal relationships were relatively undisturbed.
In the years since 1900, however, the region has experienced radical
changes. Trappers have reduced the fur bearers in large numbers, logging
activities in the valleys and on the mountain slopes near the park have
entirely changed the ecology of the region. Many important predators,
such as the wolf and wolverine, either became extinct or virtually so,
while the changing forest scene due to fires and logging brought new
species into prominence, such as the porcupine and coyote. Recently elk,
released in the nearby valleys, have entered the park and are now firmly
established, promising still new changes in the mammal picture as time
goes on. In many respects Mount Rainier has become a biotic island in a
region where the original conditions no longer exist except in the park.
The smallness of this biotic island makes it impossible for even an
undeveloped area of this type to represent really primitive conditions.
Thus the park today cannot be considered as representing the original
wilderness as seen by the first white men to enter the region. It is
merely as near the original wilderness as it has been possible to keep
it in the midst of all the changes brought about by man.

However, by the preservation of the natural environment, the National
Park Service does much to conserve the wildlife as well. In many
instances the national parks are among the last remaining refuges for
rare and vanishing species of wildlife. The wolverine, the grizzly bear,
and the wolf, now extinct over much of their range in North America, may
still be found in these sanctuaries, and, along with other species,
these creatures of the remote wilderness are fighting their battle of
survival in the only areas left to them.

Extirpated species, those native forms which are known to have existed
in some areas, but which have since disappeared, are being restored
where possible. The muskrat, formerly present in Mount Rainier National
Park, now not known to occur, is an example of an extirpated species
which should be restored.



                           WILDLIFE PROBLEMS


Since the establishment of the National Park Service in 1916, it has
become increasingly obvious that the occupation of the national parks by
man and wildlife must inevitably result in wildlife problems. The act
creating the National Park Service is specific in its language; it says
that the Service thus established shall promote and regulate the use of
the areas by such means and measures necessary “to conserve the scenery
and the natural and historic objects and the wildlife therein and to
provide for the enjoyment of the same in such manner and by such means
as will leave them unimpaired for the enjoyment of future generations.”

The apparent inconsistency presents itself immediately. Natural features
must be conserved and protected, they must not be impaired, yet
provision must be made for their enjoyment by the millions of visitors
who come to the national parks each year. The course that must be
followed, then, is one of permitting modification of the natural scene
only to the degree required to provide for perpetual enjoyment of “the
scenery, the natural and historic objects and the wildlife.”

The relations between man and the wildlife of the national parks are
complex. Both occupy the parks, with equal rights to that occupancy. It
can scarcely be argued that man is not a part of the natural scene;
certainly there is nothing essentially unnatural in the progress of our
civilization from the dawn of history to the present. In the national
parks, however, the _unimpaired_ values to be preserved are those of the
_primitive natural scene_. Man can strive to maintain these values,
unimpaired, because he has the power of reason. Through that power he
can recognize the effect of his conflict with nature, and so prevent the
destruction of the primitive natural scene by a proper regulation of his
acts.

Specifically, the wildlife problems now readily recognized in Mount
Rainier National Park are those which have developed because of
relations between man and mammals. The deer, bear, and raccoon are
outstanding examples. In the developed areas of the park many of these
animals have become so accustomed to the proximity of man that they no
longer exhibit timidity in his presence. They are essentially “wild”
animals, yet because of close association with man for several wildlife
generations, they may be practically considered as “semi-domestic”
animals.

This “semi-domesticity” is a problem in itself. First, it is not in
keeping with the primitive natural scene. The true wildlife picture is
not one of a deer eating from a visitor’s hand; that is scarcely more
natural than seeing the animal within the fenced enclosure of a zoo. The
artificial feeding of any form of wildlife is objectionable for several
other reasons. Such feeding encourages an unnatural concentration of the
animals in restricted localities, thus increasing the danger of the
spread of any contagious disease or infection. In the case of deer,
feeding affects, often disastrously, the normal habit of migration to
lower elevations in winter. Deer encouraged by feeding to remain at
Longmire, for example, encounter difficult times during the winter
months. Natural forage is buried beneath the snow, migratory routes to
the lowlands are blocked, and starvation is not unusual.

In every instance, experience has shown that when animals are hand-fed,
petted, and tamed, the results have been detrimental to both the animals
and to man. The “tamed” animals are often dangerous, or may become so.
Even the harmless appearing deer may, and do, inflict severe injuries by
striking with the fore feet or hooking with the antlers, and bears often
strike or bite, once they have lost their instinctive fear of man. When
any animal becomes dangerous, the only solutions are to eliminate the
danger by killing the animal, or to live-trap and remove it to a more
isolated section of the park. The latter is often a temporary expedient
because the animal is likely to return almost at once to its original
home.

    [Illustration: “Semi-domestic” bears may become unruly. Such animals
    must be live-trapped and removed to isolated sections of the park. A
    wary bruin is often suspicious of the trap.]

That many park visitors are entirely unaware of the concept of
presenting wildlife in its natural setting is exemplified by the man who
dashed excitedly into the Chief Ranger’s office and breathlessly
exclaimed, “Hey, one of your bears is loose!” Park animals are not “zoo
animals.” They have simply adapted themselves to man’s presence, and
although their habits have been materially changed in many instances,
they retain the wild instinct to fight when cornered, to strike back
against a real or fancied danger, to quarrel with anything which seeks
to rob them of food. It seems hardly necessary to emphasize the futility
of attempting to argue the right to possession of a choice morsel with a
three-hundred-pound bear.

Bears are often condemned as nuisances because they rob the camper’s
food cache, even to the extent of forcing open locked cupboards or
entering automobiles. Raccoons may make a shambles of food stores, if
the larder is left unprotected. That these things are nuisances is true,
but had the animals not been encouraged to expect food, it is unlikely
that they would go to such lengths to obtain it. The original approach
was undoubtedly made by man, not by the animal, and man has little
reason to condemn, under the circumstances. The sad sequence, however,
is that it is all too often the unsuspecting innocent who suffers. One
party entices a bear into camp today, feeds the animal, and moves on.
Tomorrow another camper receives a rude shock when bruin moves in and
appropriates his food supply.

It appears then, that these wildlife problems, which have developed
through man’s influence upon the animals, have been brought about by
man’s failure to employ his power of reason, his failure to recognize
the effect he may have upon the natural scene. Indeed, it would seem, in
many instances, that man is the problem, not the animals. They have
adapted themselves to a condition at variance with their nature; man has
failed to do so.

These problems, and others which are similar, are not impossible of
solution. Of the many phases of wildlife management that are a part of
the adjustments to be made in our relations with the animals of the
parks, these of living together must be approached by our recognition of
the need for such adjustment. The late George M. Wright has well
expressed the goal to be attained:

  “These problems are of such magnitude that some observers have
  concluded that only the childish idealist, pathetically blind to the
  practical obstacles, would attempt to accomplish the thing. There are
  others who believe the effort is warranted. Much of man’s genuine
  progress is dependent upon the degree to which he is capable of this
  sort of control. If we destroy nature blindly, it is a boomerang which
  will be our undoing.

  “Consecration to the task of adjusting ourselves to natural
  environment so that we secure the best values from nature without
  destroying it is not useless idealism; it is good hygiene for
  civilization.

  “In this lies the true portent of this national parks effort. Fifty
  years from now we shall still be wrestling with the problems of joint
  occupation of national parks by men and mammals, but it is reasonable
  to predict that we shall have mastered some of the simplest
  maladjustments. It is far better to pursue such a course though
  success be but partial than to relax in despair and allow the
  destructive forces to operate unchecked.”



                      LIFE ZONES OF MOUNT RAINIER


Life zones, as defined in relation to plant and animal life, are areas
inhabited by more or less definite groups of plants and animals. The
classification of these zones which is accepted by many biologists was
devised by Dr. C. Hart Merriam, who named six zones; the Arctic-alpine,
Hudsonian, Canadian, Transition, Upper Sonoran and Lower Sonoran. If one
travels from the Southwestern United States into the high country of the
Rockies or the Pacific Northwest, he will pass through all six of these
zones, beginning with the Lower Sonoran, or low desert zone, through the
Upper Sonoran, or high desert, and so on through the others until the
highest, or Arctic-alpine Zone is reached. The area immediately adjacent
to Puget Sound, for example, falls within the Transition Zone. Moving
inland toward Mount Rainier, one passes from the Transition into the
Canadian Zone, usually a short distance inside the park boundaries, and
the major portion of Mount Rainier National Park is within the upper
three zones.

Temperature is the basis for the separation of these zones, and
temperature, as we know, is affected by both altitude and latitude. In
general a difference of 1,000 feet in altitude is equivalent to a
difference of 300 miles in latitude. Variation in latitude explains the
high elevation of tree line in the southern Sierra Nevada of California
in relation to the comparatively low limit of tree growth in northern
British Columbia or Alaska. Variation in temperature explains the
tremendous difference in size and variety of tree species at 2,000 feet
and at forest line, 6,500 feet, on Mount Rainier. On a very high
mountain we might find all six of the life zones represented. The
mountain presenting such a condition, however, would necessarily be
located in a more southern latitude than Mount Rainier.

Four life zones are represented in Mount Rainier National Park: the
Transition Zone, which occupies the lower elevations of the park up to
3,000 feet; the Canadian Zone, which, with the exception of the
Transition area, extends from park boundaries to about 5,000 feet; the
Hudsonian Zone, with an altitudinal range of from approximately 5,000 to
6,500 feet; and the Arctic-alpine Zone, from 6,500 feet to the summit of
the Mountain.

As stated previously, the zones are inhabited by more or less definite
groups of plants and animals, but there is no distinct line of
demarcation between the various zones, and there is often considerable
variation in the altitudinal distribution of plants. If temperature and
moisture were uniform at a given altitude, the zones would probably be
quite distinct. However, these conditions are obviously not uniform. On
northern exposures, for example, there is less evaporation, consequently
soil moisture is increased, and lack of sunshine results in lower
temperatures. Plants which normally occur at 5,000 feet on a sunny
southern exposure may be found at a lower elevation on northern slopes,
and the reverse is true, of course, with a reversal of exposures.

Such variation is even more marked in the distribution of mammals and
birds. Many species are characteristic of one or more life zones,
depending upon the season of the year, the scarcity or abundance of
food, and other factors.

For example, deer occupy the Transition or the extreme lower limits of
the Canadian Zone in winter, but in summer range up to and occasionally
beyond the limits of the Hudsonian Zone. Goats normally range within the
upper limits of the Hudsonian and upward into the Arctic-alpine Zone in
summer, but are most commonly found in the lower Hudsonian Zone in
winter.

The general characteristics of the zones are as follows:

_Transition Zone_: This zone occupies that portion of the park which
lies below 3,000 feet. For the most part it may be more adequately
designated the Humid Transition Zone, although a limited area (roughly 4
to 6 square miles) on Stevens Creek and the Muddy Fork of Cowlitz River
is characterized by a modified plant and animal population due to
repeated fires in old Indian days. This burning favored the upward
advance of low zone elements, the destruction of the original forest
cover by fire opened the forest stand, accomplished a marked change in
conditions of temperature and moisture, thus creating a drier, warmer
site.

The Humid Transition Zone proper is one of dense, sombre forest;
magnificent trees rising from a mass of shade-loving plants with a great
number of fallen trees of huge size. Even on bright, mid-summer days the
evergreen canopy of interlaced branches permits only a little sunlight
to penetrate to the forest floor, and semi-twilight conditions exist in
the peaceful solitude of this cathedral-like serenity.

    [Illustration: The Humid Transition life zone is one of magnificent
    trees.]

    [Illustration: The forests of the Canadian life zone afford
    excellent cover for many mammals throughout the year. In summer such
    retreats are favored habitats for bear families.]

Characteristic plants of this zone, though not confined to such
association, include the Douglas fir, western red cedar, western
hemlock, salal, Oregon grape, black cottonwood, bigleaf maple, and
swordfern.

Here are found the raccoon, little spotted skunk, Oregon and Olympic
meadow mice, and the mink. In this zone are seen in late spring the
new-born fawns of the black-tailed deer.

_Canadian Zone:_ This zone does not become well defined until above the
3,000-foot level. There is a considerable mixture of both Transition and
Canadian elements at the approximate area of separation. While still
heavily forested, the trees of the Canadian Zone are noticeably smaller
than those at lower elevations and the forest is more open in character.
Although common tree species include the Douglas fir and western hemlock
of the Transition Zone, the most typical trees are the silver fir,
Alaska yellow cedar, noble fir, and western white pine. Other typical
plants are the Canadian dogwood, pipsissewa, and Cascades azalea.

There are no mammals which may be considered as characteristic
exclusively of the Canadian Zone, since those occupying this zone also
range into the Hudsonian.

_Hudsonian Zone:_ At an elevation of from 4,500 to 5,000 feet the
character of the forest cover begins to change. The trees are smaller,
and the alpine fir and mountain hemlock become dominant tree species.
Ascending to higher levels the forest becomes broken, with the number
and extent of grassy parks and subalpine meadows increasing until
finally all tree growth vanishes at an elevation of about 6,500 feet.
This is the zone of beautiful summer wildflower gardens, a region of
extensive panoramas and rugged mountain scenes. The avalanche lily,
glacier lily, the heathers, paintbrushes, and the mountain phlox are
common, as well as the white-barked pine.

    [Illustration: Snow blankets the Hudsonian life zone throughout most
    of the year. Paradise Valley lies within this zone, the towering
    bulk of the Mountain above 6,500 feet is in the Arctic-alpine zone.]

Snow blankets these highlands throughout most of the year, and the
larger mammals are usually at the lower elevations during the winter
months. Many of the permanent wildlife inhabitants are those which
hibernate or are active beneath the snow, as the Hollister chipmunk,
marmot, pika, Rainier meadow mouse, and Rainier pocket gopher.

_Arctic-alpine Zone:_ Above the forest line all plant life diminishes
rapidly in extent. This is a region of barren, rocky soils; perpetual
snow fields; and glacial ice; a bleak and forbidding expanse of
awe-inspiring grandeur where the storm king yields supremacy for only a
few brief weeks in mid-summer.

Characteristic plants, found in the lower portions of this zone, include
the Lyall’s lupine, Tolmie’s saxifrage, mountain buckwheat, and golden
aster.

Only one mammal, the mountain goat, may be considered as characteristic
of this zone.



                              THE MAMMALS


             COLUMBIAN BLACK-TAILED DEER, BLACK-TAILED DEER
             _Odocoileus hemionus columbianus_ (Richardson)

The Columbian black-tailed deer is a typical member of the deer family,
about the size of its eastern relative, the white-tailed deer. The
antlers of the males are forked, rather than having the tines rise from
a single main beam as do those of the white-tail. The upper surface of
the tail is conspicuously dark brown or black over its entire length.
The color of the pelage varies with the season, but is the same in both
sexes. In summer the back and flanks are reddish to reddish yellow; in
winter gray, intermixed with black, with a dark line along the back,
black on the top of the head, and conspicuous white on the chin and
upper throat. The underparts are sooty, with white on the inner sides of
the legs. The young, at birth, are a dark, rich brown, profusely spotted
with creamy yellow. The dark coloration very shortly fades to a lighter
brown, or reddish, similar to the summer coat of the adult, and the
spots disappear in the early fall when the change to winter pelage
begins.

_Specimens in park collection:_ RNP-14 and RNP-113; Longmire Museum,
Park Headquarters.

The range of the Columbian black-tailed deer is the Pacific Northwest
from northern California to British Columbia and from the Sierra Nevada
and Cascade Mountains to the Pacific Coast.

    [Illustration: The bleak and awe-inspiring grandeur of the
    Arctic-alpine life zone is the summer habitat of the mountain goat.]

It is the most common large animal in the park, distributed in summer
throughout the forested areas and occasionally wandering above tree
line, the males generally ranging higher than the females and young,
preferring the sub-alpine parks and meadows. Deer in general exhibit a
preference for burned-over brush lands and other less densely forested
areas.

In winter they are found at lower elevations, usually below snow line,
generally outside park boundaries, although common along the Nisqually
River from Longmire Meadows downstream, along lower Tahoma Creek, and in
the vicinity of the Ohanapecosh Hot Springs and lower Carbon River.

Nearly all visitors to Mount Rainier National Park soon become familiar
with this graceful animal so commonly seen along the trails and
roadsides. Indeed, it is a rare occasion when one or more deer are not
seen in a short drive or hike in any section of the park. It is only
with the arrival of the snows that they are less frequently observed,
and even during the winter months they are quite abundant at the lower
elevations.

    [Illustration: Columbian black-tailed deer and fawns. The young were
    less than an hour old when this photograph was made.]

The seasonal migration is a noteworthy characteristic. With the coming
of spring, deer move upward from the lowlands, closely following the
retreating snow. The young are born in late May or June, usually after
the does have reached their summer range, although they may move higher
to find relief from flies. There is practically no banding together of
the deer at this time. Each mother and her offspring, usually twins,
sometimes one and rarely three, comprise a family group, and tend to
keep to themselves. The fawns are hidden at birth, and remain in some
secluded spot until they are several days old. The mother visits them at
intervals during the day so that they may be fed, and stays near their
place of concealment. Almost every season “abandoned” fawns are
discovered and brought in to one or another of the park’s ranger
stations by well-meaning but ill-informed park visitors. In
exceptionally rare instances the mother may have been killed by some
predator or a passing automobile, but under no known circumstances has a
fawn ever been deliberately abandoned. _Fawns, if found, should be left
unmolested._

At the time of the spring migration to the uplands, the older bucks
habitually move to higher levels than do the young bucks and does. They
prefer the subalpine parks and meadows, and often range in pairs or in
groups of from three to five or six individuals.

    [Illustration: New-born fawns, if found, should be left unmolested.]

The first heavy snow starts the deer on their annual trek to the
lowlands, and the journey is ordinarily a consistent one, once begun it
is completed over a period of from several hours to a day or two,
depending upon the distance to be covered. Study has revealed that deer
follow regularly established routes during migration, returning year
after year to the same general winter and summer ranges. Well-worn game
trails along prominent ridges and watercourses are testimony to this
concentrated movement, the intersecting minor paths are but tributaries
to the major current of travel.

It is prior to the fall migration that the deer herds assemble, the
does, fawns, and yearling bucks banding together, the older bucks
breaking away from their summer associations and joining the does for
the mating season, which occurs in November and December.

Vicious battles are frequent at this season. Determined to assert
supremacy, the bucks are merciless antagonists, and at times the
struggle is fatal to the loser. In rare instances both may perish, with
antlers so tightly locked that escape for either is impossible,
exhaustion and starvation the inevitable result. At the conclusion of
the mating season the two sexes go their separate ways again, the bucks
often assuming again the easy companionship of the summer months.

The abundance or lack of forage is an important factor, perhaps the most
important, in determining local abundance of deer. Densely forested
sections are not capable of supporting large deer populations because of
the lack of sufficient brush, shrubbery, and succulent plants which make
up the bulk of the deer’s diet. Primarily a browser, only in spring does
this animal show a preference for grass, and then only for a short
period.

Deer have many natural enemies. It is fortunate that nature has provided
for an abundant reproduction in this species. Snow is perhaps most
serious of all, since a heavy snowfall may cover the food supply, and
certainly hampers the movement of the animals when they must escape
predatory coyotes or cougars. Late spring snows, in particular, come at
a critical time. At best forage diminishes steadily during the winter
months, and when this period is followed by even a short space when food
is unavailable, starvation and death strikes the weaker and aged
animals.

Of the predatory animals, the coyote and cougar are most effective. The
fox, wildcat, and bear undoubtedly take an occasional fawn, but cannot
be considered dangerous to an adult deer. In view of the powers of rapid
reproduction shown by deer, it is well that they have numerous natural
enemies; otherwise wholesale destruction of brush lands and forest
reproduction would occur as the animals reached a peak of
overpopulation, followed by mass starvation. This frequently happens in
many parts of the West where the natural enemies of the deer have been
exterminated. Predators follow, in most instances, the line of least
resistance. As a consequence, it is the weaker, the diseased, or the
otherwise unfit animals that tend to be struck down first, and so the
fittest survive.

A reasonable balance seems to have been attained in the numbers of deer
in the park. For the past several years there has been no apparent
change, an estimated 600 range within park boundaries during the summer
months.


                  ROCKY MOUNTAIN MULE DEER, MULE DEER
              _Odocoileus hemionus hemionus_ (Rafinesque)

The mule deer is similar to the preceding subspecies in general
character. Perhaps the most noticeable field difference is the tail,
which in the mule deer is narrow and black-tipped, above _and below_,
rather than wider and dark brown or black over the entire upper surface
and entirely white below as in the black-tailed. The large ears, from
which this species derives its common name, are distinctive, the
black-tailed deer is the smaller and darker of the two subspecies.

_Specimens in park collection:_ None.

The mule deer ranges over most of the Rocky Mountain region and the
western United States, from the Dakotas, Nebraska, Kansas and Oklahoma
westward to eastern British Columbia, Washington, Oregon and California.

The range of this species in the park is at present restricted to the
extreme northeastern section, where it is observed on rare occasions
during the summer months.

The mule deer is very similar to the black-tailed deer in habits as well
as in appearance. Seasonal migrations, food preferences, natural
enemies, and other characteristics are much alike in both species,
although the mule deer habitually favors a more sparsely timbered, less
rugged terrain.

The typical habitat is an open forest, with many parks, meadows, and
brush-covered hillsides. As a general rule the mule deer prefers the
Ponderosa pine and sagebrush region, and avoids densely wooded areas.
The occasional records of this species in the park are of those rare
stragglers which drift in from east of the Cascade crest.

Taylor and Shaw (_Mammals and Birds of Mount Rainier National Park_,
1927) state that mule deer “May occur in small numbers in the White
River region, on the east side of the park.” Although their parties did
not observe mule deer while in the field in 1919, they believed that
observations made by others familiar with the region were reliable.

A report submitted by the chief ranger of the park in 1932 states:
“While mule deer are rarely seen they do range along the east side.” It
was not until 1941, however, that this species was included in the
park’s annual wildlife census, when it was listed as, “Uncommon, only a
few have been seen. Tipsoo Lake, Deadwood Lake, and Yakima Park.”

The 1948 wildlife census estimates 10 to 20 mule deer observed
occasionally on the east side during the summer months in previous
years. While no reports were recorded in 1948, it is believed that the
status of the species is unchanged.


                          AMERICAN ELK, WAPITI
                   _Cervus canadensis nelsoni_ Bailey

The elk is the largest animal found in the park, and the largest member
of the deer family found in North America, except the moose. The adult
males have tremendous, wide-branching antlers, which are shed annually.
The sexes are slightly different in coloration, with females lighter
than the males. The head and neck are dark brown, flanks and back a
tawny to brownish gray, large yellowish rump patch, legs dark brown. The
young are light brown, spotted with white. An adult male in good
condition will weigh from 800 to 1,000 pounds; females are somewhat
smaller.

_Specimens in park collection:_ None.

Elk are found in western North America, mostly in the Rocky Mountain
area and the far west. They formerly ranged over most of the United
States and southern Canada.

During summer elk occur in the park along the eastern boundary, north
and west to the Deadwood Lakes and Goat Island Mountain, up the Cowlitz
River and Stevens drainages to The Bench on the north side of the
Tatoosh Range. They are reported very rarely from the northern and
western slopes of the Mountain. In winter a few elk range along the
Ohanapecosh drainage in the southeastern part of the park.

The early settlers of this country gave the name “elk” to this
magnificent member of the deer family. This is an unfortunate
designation, since the animal in no way resembles the Old World elk,
which is actually a moose. However, elk it has been since early American
history, and elk it is likely to remain, although the Indian name
“wapiti” seems preferable and more appropriate.

The history of the elk in Mount Rainier National Park is an interesting
study. There can be little doubt that the Roosevelt or Olympic elk,
_Cervus canadensis roosevelti_, formerly ranged over much of the Cascade
Range in the State of Washington, and so must be considered the native
species of Mount Rainier, although no longer found in this region.

An attempt was made to reestablish the Roosevelt elk in the park in
June, 1934, when two young animals, obtained from the Washington State
Department of Game, were liberated at Longmire Springs. Two more were
released in October, 1934; all had been captured on the Olympic
Peninsula, and the four were to form a nucleus for the park herd.

However, to the keen disappointment of park officials, the transplanted
elk were unfavorably affected by their proximity to civilization, as is
often the case with wild creatures. So unafraid did they become that
soon they were regarded as a nuisance, a dangerous nuisance because of
their size, pugnacity, and their total lack of timidity, and recapture
and deportation to a nearby zoo was the final step in this attempted
repatriation.

The elk now ranging into the park have been introduced on lands outside
park boundaries by the Washington State Department of Game and the
Pierce County Game Commission. These animals belong to the species
called American elk, _Cervus canadensis nelsoni_, and were imported from
the Yellowstone region. They do not differ greatly from the native
species, though somewhat smaller and lighter in general coloration.

The seasonal migration of elk is well defined. Early in spring, with the
retreat of the snow from the uplands, they move to higher pastures,
where they remain until driven down by the approach of winter. During
recent years a gradual increase in numbers and an extension of range
within the park has been observed. The wildlife census for 1948
estimated the summer herd to number some 40 to 50 individuals, with
several animals wintering along the Ohanapecosh drainage in the
southeastern section of the park.

Bull elk are the most polygamous of all deer. During the mating season,
which occurs late in the fall, a single bull will gather together a
“harem” of from three or four to as many as two dozen cows with the
current year’s calves, and defiantly assert his mastery over the group,
driving away younger bulls of lesser strength. Should another bull
challenge his dominance, the ensuing battle is rarely fatal, although it
may result in a new master. It is not unusual to see the loser, reduced
to the status of a “bachelor bull,” ranging alone.

The “bugling” of the bulls, a shrill, high-pitched invitation to combat,
is a thrilling call, an unusual record of the music of nature.

The young are born in late May or June, usually one to a mother,
sometimes two, and rarely three. Like all deer, they are spotted,
somewhat lighter in color than the fawns of the black-tailed deer. The
spots are retained until replaced by the winter coat.


            CASCADE MOUNTAIN GOAT, WHITE GOAT, MOUNTAIN GOAT
             _Oreamnos americanus americanus_ (Blainville)

The goat is completely unlike any other park animal, and is easily
identified by its resemblance to a large white or yellowish-white
domestic goat. Both sexes have short, black, sharp-pointed horns, and
are otherwise alike, except that the males are generally somewhat
larger, and have a distinct beard.

_Specimens in park collection:_ None.

The Cascade mountain goat is found in the Cascade Mountains of
Washington. Records indicate that it probably ranged into the Oregon
Cascades some decades ago, but there are no recent authentic reports
from that area. Sub-species similar to the Cascades goat are found in
the northern Rocky Mountains, northward through Canada and into Alaska,
as well as on the Olympic Peninsula.

    [Illustration: The mountain goat is an indomitable mountaineer.]

In the park in summer this denizen of the rocky crags is rather
frequently seen in the high country on all slopes of the Mountain. The
principal bands may be found in the region of Van Trump Park, Cowlitz
Rocks, Cowlitz Chimneys, Steamboat Prow, Burroughs Mountain, the
Colonnade, the Puyallup Cleaver, and Emerald Ridge, where they normally
range at elevations of from 6,000 to 10,000 feet.

In winter it is not uncommon to observe small bands on Cougar Rock, the
southern slopes of Tum-Tum Peak, Mount Wow, lower Emerald Ridge, Mother
Mountain, and the western slope of Chenuis Mountain.

Here we have another example of an animal that has been misnamed.
Although it is called a mountain goat it is not a true goat, but is more
of a rock antelope. Its nearest living relatives are the Alpine chamois
of south central Europe and the Himalayan serow of Asia. At one time
near relatives of our present goats were spread over much of the western
part of North America and fossils have been found in caves in lower
Grand Canyon and as far south as Nuevo Leon, Mexico. While it is not
known what happened to cause their extinction over much of their
original range, it appears likely that early man had an important part
in it. It is known that the Indians of the Mount Rainier country hunted
the goats extensively at one time, and undoubtedly this awkward
appearing dweller of the remote and inaccessible sections is an animal
most park visitors hope to encounter.

Chief feeding grounds during the summer are on the heavily vegetated
slopes near forest line. In the early morning hours the goats move out
of their nighttime resting places and begin feeding as they climb to
higher elevations. They travel in a very leisurely fashion, seldom
running, and they select their course with considerable care. An old
billy usually takes the lead, the other following along behind in single
file. Young goats are “sandwiched” between the adults. In moving across
any slope area where the footing is treacherous or where rocks might
roll, it is customary for only one goat to cross at a time, the others
staying back until it is safe to cross.

Without doubt the characteristic of the mountain goats that excites the
most interest and admiration is their ability to travel across steep
cliffs and narrow ledges with no apparent difficulty or hesitation. Nor
does this trail lead only over perilous rock ridges. The goats may
venture out upon the ice fields of some of the glaciers. Even glare ice
does not present an impasse, it only serves to slow the progress of
these indomitable mountaineers.

The female usually has one or two kids born in late spring. By September
they are about half grown, and quite capable of keeping up with their
parents in even the most difficult going. They remain with their mother
through the first winter. Like most young animals, kids are quite
playful.

Apparently the goat population of this area is fairly stable, perhaps
increasing slightly under the complete sanctuary afforded by the park.
As long ago as 1894, John Muir reckoned that there were over 200 goats
on Mount Rainier. Ernest Thompson Seton, in his _Lives of Game Animals_
states that “There are certainly 300 now (1929).” The wildlife census
for the park lists from 250-300 goats in 1931, and census reports in
recent years indicate from 350-400.

    [Illustration: Bears are a feature attraction of the park.]


                           OLYMPIC BLACK BEAR
                _Ursus americanus altifrontalis_ Elliot

There are two color forms of the black bear in the park—the black and
the brown. The all black or mostly black is the phase most commonly
observed, but brown individuals may often be seen. The black phase
sometimes has a brown patch covering the muzzle and a white spot on the
chest. The color ratio is usually about five black to one brown.

_Specimens in park collection:_ None.

The black bear was formerly found over most of wooded North America, but
has now become extinct over much of the original range. The Olympic
black bear occurs in western Washington, western Oregon, and
northwestern California.

In the park it is likely to be encountered anywhere in the timbered
regions, with an occasional record coming from above forest line. One
record of an unusual nature was obtained several years ago by Mr. Harry
Meyers of the Mountaineers Club and Major E. S. Ingraham of Seattle.
They reported that while blizzard bound in the crater on the summit of
Mount Rainier they saw a black bear walk up to the rocks on the rim of
the crater and then disappear in the storm. They suggested that the bear
possibly was lost in the storm while on a glacier and instinctively
climbed higher and higher until it reached the top of the peak. In
October, 1948, a record was obtained of a bear well up on the Paradise
Glacier, 6,500 feet. This animal was climbing steadily higher, and
disappeared over the crest west of Cowlitz Rocks.

There can be no doubt that the bear is one of the feature attractions of
the park. The appearance of one of these animals is a signal for
visitors of all ages to come running to get a look. Unfortunately the
attention paid to the bear doesn’t always stop at this point, and
someone is almost sure to pull out a piece of candy or some other tidbit
to see if bruin will eat it. Thus a bear problem is soon in the making.
Loving sweets, bacon and grease as he does, the bear cannot be blamed
too much if he eats quantities of these items offered him and then makes
a shambles of tents and food stores looking for more.

Contrary to popular belief the black bear is not a vicious animal, and
in the normal wild state is timid and takes to his heels whenever
anything of an unusual nature happens. Sudden loud noises will send him
off in a wild stampede. This can certainly be attested to by one visitor
whose car was invaded by a bear. Unwittingly the bear sat heavily upon
the car’s horn—and simply took out glass, door and all in his mad
scramble to get out!

The bear is an expert climber and handles himself with great skill. When
frightened the cub will almost always shinny up the nearest tree before
looking to see what caused the alarm. The mother bear will often send
her youngsters up a tree when she is afraid they may be in danger or
when she wants them to “stay put” for a time. Bear cubs in a tree are a
fair warning to stay away because the mother is bound to be somewhere
close by.

The baby bears are usually two in number and are born in January or
February while the mother is in her winter quarters. They are small and
helpless at birth, weighing only a few ounces. By the middle of June,
when most folks see them, they are about the size of raccoons, and by
the time fall comes around they are large enough to take pretty good
care of themselves, although they still remain with their mother. There
is nothing more humorous and clown-like in the forests than a young bear
cub. Filled with an endless desire to learn something new, he is forever
getting into difficulties. The cub loves to wrestle and box, and a play
session with a husky brother or sister is usually somewhat of a rough
and tumble affair.

Falltime is the time of year to see bears, because the abundance of
huckleberries on the many slopes and ridges above 5,000 feet brings them
out in large numbers. It is nothing uncommon to see as many as six of
these animals at one time in a berry patch, industriously stripping the
bushes of the luscious fruit. The bear is also in his best physical
condition at this time, as he prepares to go into hibernation and his
coat is rich-toned and glossy. The hibernation period varies with the
individual, some animals going into their winter sleep rather early
while others may prowl around for some time after the first snows have
fallen. Bears have been observed out of hibernation as early as February
26, near Longmire.

The kind of food available is really no great problem for a bear; his
main worry is getting enough of it. He seems to like almost anything,
with the list including such varied items as bumblebees, clover,
skunk-cabbage roots and many other succulent plants, frogs, toads, field
mice, ants, berries of all types and a wide assortment of meats.


                            PACIFIC RACCOON
                       _Procyon lotor psora_ Gray

The raccoon has a stocky body about the size of a small dog, with
relatively short legs and a sharp-pointed muzzle. The coloration is
grizzled gray-brown with black-tipped hairs sometimes giving a dark
appearance. The top of the head is blackish, and a broad, “mask-like”
black band extends across the face and eyes, bordered above and below
with white. The tail is brownish, encircled by six or seven blackish
rings. The underparts are light brown, silvered here and there with
whitish hairs. The soles of the feet are black.

_Specimens in park collection:_ Mounted specimen, Longmire Museum, Park
Headquarters.

Raccoons are widely distributed through the forested regions of North
America. The Pacific raccoon is found from southern British Columbia
south to northern California, in and west of the Cascade Mountains. In
the park it normally ranges up to around 3,000 feet, although some
individuals have taken up residence in the buildings around Paradise
Valley, 5,500 feet.

Cunning, clever, and inquisitive, with a truly remarkable ability for
adaptation to human influences, the raccoon has firmly established
residence in a few locations of the park during recent years. Formerly
uncommon, these animals are now abundant at Longmire, and are frequently
seen in other developed areas as well.

A comparison of the habits of the ’coons thus subjected to close contact
with man, and the traits of the true wilderness animals is amazing. The
semi-domestic raccoons are no longer strictly nocturnal in their
wanderings, but are often abroad at all times of the day. A whole family
may parade leisurely across the lawn or parking plaza at mid-day,
pausing to peer curiously through slitted eyes at an assemblage of
camera-laden visitors. Competition for food is keen, and so avid in
their pursuit of forage do the animals become that no time is wasted in
“washing” any morsel, it is bolted immediately.

Quarrels, squabbles, and vicious battles are waged vociferously. The
raccoon is a surly, short-tempered creature at best, and when two or
more get together, especially members of different families, a “gang
fight” may be expected to develop, with half a dozen clawing, biting,
snarling ’coons entangled in one furry mass. For some reason the ringed
tail appears to be a particularly vulnerable point of attack, as several
“bob-tailed” animals at Longmire attest.

In some regions this animal is reported as hibernating during the winter
months, but the local raccoons do not do so. They remain as active with
three feet of snow on the ground as during the summer, although not seen
in their normal abundance during periods of extremely inclement weather.

    [Illustration: The marmot is abundant in rock slides above 5,000
    feet.]

The raccoon seems to eat practically anything, with meat of any type
freely accepted. Under normal conditions the diet is largely made up of
frogs, fish, small animals, birds, eggs, insects, and fruits.


            CASCADE HOARY MARMOT, WHISTLING MARMOT, WHISTLER
                 _Marmota caligata cascadensis_ Howell

The Cascade hoary marmot is one of the largest North American rodents, a
close relative of the woodchuck of the East, with the head and body
about twenty inches in length, tail about nine inches. The body is stout
and clumsy in appearance; the legs are short and stout; the head is
short and broad with a blunt nose, small, broad, rounded ears, and small
eyes. Adults have a black face; the nape, shoulders, and upper back
gray; the remaining portion of the back and rump is black grizzled with
gray; the tail is brown. The young are darker in color than the adults.
In midsummer the pelage is in poor condition, with the darker portions
more brown than black. The large size, gray shoulders, and shrill,
whistling call are distinguishing characters which permit easy
identification of this animal.

_Specimens in park collection:_ RNP-40, RNP-41, RNP-112; Longmire
Museum, Park Headquarters.

The woodchucks (genus Marmota) are found over most of the United States,
well into Canada, and in the west north into Alaska. The Cascade hoary
marmot occurs in the northern Cascade Mountains from Mount Rainier
northward into southern British Columbia.

On Mount Rainier the whistler is abundant in the rock slides from about
5,000 feet to forest line and above. Occasionally the alpine parks and
meadows are chosen habitats; the animals are common in the Paradise
Valley and on the open slopes above Alta Vista.

A piercing, far-carrying whistle is often the park visitor’s
introduction to the marmot or rockchuck of Mount Rainier. A careful
scrutiny of the nearby terrain will often be rewarded by the sight of
one or several of these animals, old and young, perched on a rock above
the entrance to the burrow, or galloping clumsily but swiftly toward
home and safety.

It is usually possible to continue the acquaintance at closer range,
particularly if the observer approaches slowly and the animals are in
areas where they have become accustomed to having human visitors in
their neighborhood.

The whistler is almost strictly vegetarian in his food habits, feeding
upon green succulent vegetation in the near vicinity of the burrow. It
is common to find well-beaten paths from the animal’s “front door” to
the forage areas. Moving about on a grassy slope the fat, lazy rodent
seems anything but alert, as he crawls from one spot to another. But the
observer soon becomes aware that the chuck’s pauses to survey the
landscape are frequent; his head is raised, if no danger threatens his
tail flips and feeding is resumed. If frightened, swift retreat is
generally preceded by the shrill whistle, and the sluggish, crawling fat
one becomes a scurrying bundle of fur following a well-worn and familiar
route to the sanctuary of his den.

The marmot is a sun-worshiper. After an early morning feeding period, it
is his custom to sprawl, rug-like, on a favorite rock slab, sometimes
for hours, resting and obviously enjoying his sun-bath. Chucks are
rarely abroad for any extended length of time on cloudy, drizzly days.
They may appear if driven out by hunger, but seem to prefer the warmth
and comfort of the den during inclement weather.

The hibernating period of the marmot begins in September and lasts well
into spring, the time of emergence is usually late in April. There is no
evidence that any food is stored, and for some time after coming out of
hibernation the animals may travel a considerable distance over the
snowfields in search of open ground and green vegetation.

The famous naturalist, Ernest Thompson Seton, has well expressed the
marmot’s way of life:

  “Convincing evidence there is that, during lethargy—the little death
  of the winter sleep—the vital functions are suspended—the sleeper
  neither grows, suffers, wastes, nor ages. He did not lay up stores of
  food; yet, in the spring, he comes out just as fat as he went in the
  fall before.

  “If then, the Powers-that-Be have allotted to the Marmot five full
  years of life, and he elects to live that life in ten bright summer
  times, then must he spend the six dark months each year in deathlike
  sleep. And this he does, in calm, deliberate choice.

  “Oh, happy Whistler of the Peaks! How many of us would do the very
  same, were we but given choice.”

Not many natural enemies threaten the marmot. Perhaps the most to be
feared is the golden eagle, which may drop from the blue to seize him in
the midst of his luxurious sun-bath. Because of his size the smaller
predators are harmless to him, but the coyotes and foxes are relentless
hunters and ever-present dangers.


                             THE CHIPMUNKS

Two kinds of chipmunks, the Cooper and Hollister, are known to occur
within the park. Although their altitudinal ranges overlap, the two
species may be quite readily distinguished by their variation in size
and other characteristics. A brief discussion of each follows:

    [Illustration: The Hollister chipmunk is a lively and audacious
    little animal.]

The Cooper chipmunk, _Tamias townsendii cooperi_ Baird, is the larger of
the two species mentioned above. It is predominantly dark brown in
color; the light colored stripes above and below the eye are indistinct;
the black head stripes are not conspicuous; the nine alternating black
and grayish white lengthwise stripes on the back are somewhat obscured
by the dark color; the tail is black above, grizzled with white, silvery
margined, reddish brown below. The total length of a typical specimen is
ten inches; head and body, five and one-half inches, tail four and
one-half inches.

This chipmunk is found in the higher eastern Cascade Mountains and
Olympic Mountains of Washington. In Mount Rainier National Park it
occurs from park boundaries to 6,000 feet, almost to forest line.

The Hollister chipmunk, _Tamias amoenus ludibundus_ (Hollister), also
called the little chipmunk or Alpine chipmunk, is about a third smaller
in size than the Cooper chipmunk. It is predominantly gray brown in
color. The light colored stripes above and below the eye are distinct;
the black head stripes are more conspicuous than those of the Cooper,
the back stripes are sharply defined; the tail is brown mixed with black
above, margined with yellowish brown, yellowish brown below. The total
length is about eight and three-fourths inches; head and body four and
three-fourths inches, tail four inches.

The Hollister chipmunk is found in the higher Cascade Mountains of
Washington. In Mount Rainier National Park it occurs generally in the
Hudsonian Zone between 4,500 and 6,500 feet, rarely lower or above
forest line, but it is one of the few park animals recorded on the
summit of Mount Rainier.

_Specimens in park collection:_ Cooper chipmunk, RNP-7, RNP-8, RNP-9,
RNP-16, RNP-18, RNP-74, RNP-110; Hollister chipmunk, RNP-28, RNP-29,
RNP-30, RNP-95; Longmire Museum, Park Headquarters.

The lively, audacious, and beautifully marked chipmunks are the most
popular of all the animals of the park. Locally abundant as they are in
the neighborhood of the campgrounds and lodges, easily observed because
of their diurnal habits and lack of fear, they are a source of
entertainment and amusement to many park visitors.

Like the mantled ground squirrels, the chipmunks adapt themselves
rapidly to man’s presence, forage about camps and lodges in search of
various delicacies, invade camp stores without hesitation, but are such
engaging company that it is difficult to regard them as anything other
than friendly guests.

Many varieties of seeds and berries furnish the food supply of this
animal, and quantities are stored in their burrows for use during the
spring and early summer. Although the chipmunks hibernate during most of
the winter, they sometimes venture out on warm, spring-like days,
returning to their winter nests when the weather again becomes
inclement.

Predaceous birds and mammals active during the daylight hours are all
enemies of the chipmunks. These natural enemies work to keep the
chipmunk populations free of contagious diseases such as relapsing
fever, which is transmissible to human beings, by removing sick and
sluggish chipmunks before they can infect their companions.

    [Illustration: Mantled ground squirrels are popular with park
    visitors.]


             CASCADE MANTLED GROUND SQUIRREL, BIG CHIPMUNK
                     _Citellus saturatus_ (Rhoads)

As the name implies, the mantled ground squirrels are ground dwellers.
In general external appearance they resemble the eastern chipmunks, but
are considerably larger, and much bigger than their environmental
associates, the western chipmunks. They may be further distinguished
from the latter species by the more robust body, the conspicuous white
eye-ring, and the absence of stripes on the head. The Cascade species of
mantled ground squirrel is about twelve inches in length overall, with a
flattened, somewhat bushy, narrow tail some four inches long. The sexes
are colored alike, the mantle over the head, sides of the neck,
shoulders, and forearms is reddish-brown, mixed with black, which is in
distinct contrast to the rest of the upper parts. The back is grizzled
black, merging into grizzled red-brown over the rump, with a narrow
yellowish-white stripe, edged with black, on each flank from shoulder to
thigh. The underparts and the upper surfaces of the feet are
yellowish-white. The tail is well-clothed with dark, yellow-tipped hair
above, yellowish-brown below.

_Specimens in park collection:_ RNP-33, RNP-34, RNP-36; Longmire Museum,
Park Headquarters.

The mantled ground squirrels are found only in western North America, on
the forested mountain slopes from California, Arizona, and New Mexico
north into British Columbia.

The species common to Mount Rainier National Park is found in the
Cascade Mountains of Washington, and on the Mountain it is confined
principally to the Hudsonian zone, between 4,500 and 6,500 feet. It is
most abundant on the east side, but is very common locally in the
Paradise Valley vicinity.

This animal inhabits by preference the rather open, rocky hillsides, and
is seldom seen in the heavily forested sections. Burned over brush lands
are favored localities, particularly on those slopes exposed to the sun.

The big chipmunks are less graceful than their livelier, smaller
cousins; they are unsuspicious and easily observed, and are very popular
with park visitors because of their obvious lack of timidity. They are
quick to adapt themselves to the proximity of humans, and sometimes
become nuisances about campsites and dwellings because of their
audacious thefts of various foodstuffs.

The capacious cheek pouches are used in collecting seeds, nuts, roots,
berries, and the bulbs of various plants, which are stored in
underground caches. Although these ground squirrels hibernate from early
fall until late spring, forage is meager during the first few weeks
after emergence from their long winter nap, and without provision for
these lean times, the animals would surely starve. They often appear
when the snow is still deep over their burrows, digging several feet
upward through this white blanket to emerge on the surface.

The most dreaded enemy is the weasel, but the ground squirrels are
preyed upon by coyotes, foxes, and hawks as well, since they are a
staple item in the diet of most predators.


                    DOUGLAS PINE SQUIRREL, CHICKAREE
              _Tamiasciurus douglasii douglasii_ (Bachman)

A dark grayish brown squirrel about twelve inches in length overall;
with prominent ears; moderately slender in form; tail almost as long as
the body, somewhat flattened, well clothed with hair but not bushy, more
gray than the body. The underparts vary from a pale yellow brown to
reddish brown. The sexes are colored alike; the pelage is fairly long,
soft, but not silky. The characteristic appearance is one of extreme
alertness.

    [Illustration: Common throughout forested sections, the Douglas pine
    squirrel is a vociferous bundle of energy.]

_Specimens in park collection:_ RNP-10, RNP-11, RNP-15, RNP-47, RNP-100,
RNP-107; Longmire Museum, Park Headquarters.

The Douglas squirrel is classified as one of the red squirrels, or
chickarees, which are distributed over most of forested North America.

In Mount Rainier National Park these squirrels are common, and are found
throughout the area from the park boundaries to forest line, and
occasionally even higher.

This vociferous, restless bundle of energy is seen and heard by almost
every park visitor, bounding across the highway or trail, or scampering
madly up a nearby tree, to peer around the trunk or perch upon limb just
out of reach where it scolds and chatters vehemently at all intruders.

Unlike the flying squirrel, the chickaree is abroad throughout the
daylight hours, busy, inquisitive, obviously and usually noisily,
resentful of interference with what it considers its own affairs. Only
in the spring is this squirrel somewhat subdued, probably because of the
youngsters tucked away in a nearby nest in some tree hollow. The young
do not venture into the world until more than half grown, when they take
their places in the regular routine of family activities.

Because the Douglas squirrel does not hibernate, it gathers the cones of
most of the coniferous trees, as well as the winged seeds of the vine
maple and even mushrooms to furnish food over the lean winter months.
The late summer and early fall is a busy time for this industrious
fellow. The swish and thump of falling cones is a common sound through
the woods when the harvest is in progress. A number of cones are neatly
clipped from the tree tops, then the worker descends the tree to gather
and store them in a hollow stump, beneath a log or the roots of a tree,
or even in a hastily excavated hole in the forest floor. Interrupt this
activity by secreting a few of the fallen cones, and the imprecations
called down upon your head would scorch the printed page if they could
be translated into human speech.

Although preyed upon by winged and four-footed predators alike, the
chickaree holds its own very well, probably because this fellow is
seldom caught napping, certainly not because of shy and retiring habits,
since the “chatterer” is one of the most conspicuous and interesting of
our woodland creatures.


                        CASCADE FLYING SQUIRREL
               _Glaucomys sabrinus fuliginosus_ (Rhoads)

A medium-sized, arboreal squirrel; dark-brown above, light brown on the
under parts, light gray or sometimes light brown on the sides of the
face, the sexes colored alike, the young darker than the adults. The
eyes are large and dark, the pelage is soft and silky. The flat, furry
tail and the fold of loose skin between the fore and hind legs on either
side distinguish this animal from any other.

_Specimens in park collection:_ None.

Flying squirrels inhabit a large part of forested North America. The
Cascade sub-species is found from southern British Columbia southward
along the Cascade Range to the Siskiyou Mountains of Northern
California.

    [Illustration: Park visitors rarely see the beautiful little flying
    squirrel.]

Although seldom seen because of its nocturnal habits, the flying
squirrel is locally abundant in some sections of the park, particularly
at Ohanapecosh Hot Springs.

The most interesting characteristic of this little tree-dweller is its
unique habit of gliding from tree to tree through the air. In launching
its “flight” the squirrel leaps into space from its perch on a dead snag
or tree, extends the fore and hind legs, spreading the loose fold of
skin along its sides, and with the flat tail fluttering behind, sails
obliquely downward, alighting on the ground or the lower trunk of
another tree. This aerial maneuver cannot truly be called flight, but
has resulted in the name “flying squirrel.”

Little is known of the life history of this beautiful little animal,
because of the difficulty of observation. Old woodpecker holes or
natural cavities in trees are favorite nesting places, and the flying
squirrel is almost never found away from the nest except at night or
when disturbed. It is a shy and retiring creature, preyed upon by owls,
martens, weasels, and other small carnivorous animals on the rare
occasions when it comes to the ground. Flying squirrels are omnivorous,
nuts and other vegetable foods are apparently preferred, although meat
is sometimes taken when available.


                           CASCADE PIKA, CONY
                 _Ochotona princeps brunnescens_ Howell

This small, rodent-like animal is robust, short-legged, with a tail so
short that it is not noticeable in field observation. The sexes are
colored alike; gray-brown above, whitish below, ears darker, feet light.
The pelage is soft and quite dense. In general appearance the pikas
closely resemble the rabbits, except for their small size, short legs,
and short, rounded ears. The peculiar “bleating” call is unmistakable.

_Specimens in park collection:_ RNP-12, RNP-13, and one mounted
specimen; Headquarters Museum, Longmire.

The many sub-species of the pika are widely distributed at the higher
elevations throughout the Rocky Mountains and the Coast Ranges. The
typical habitat is the rock-slides and talus slopes near forest line.

In the park one may expect to find the pika on any rocky slope from
3,000 (rarely lower) to 8,000 feet. They are infrequently seen in
winter, due to the depth of snow over most sites which they inhabit, but
during clear, sunny days they occasionally venture out in exposed
locations.

The common name “hay-maker” has often been applied to the pika, because
it is one of those provident creatures which literally “makes hay”
during the summer months, curing and drying a wide variety of grasses
and other plants which are stored for winter food. The hay-barn of the
pika is in a sheltered crevice or beneath an overhanging boulder in the
masses of rock where it makes its home. These hay-piles are much in
evidence where pikas are abundant.

The protective coloring of the animal makes it difficult to distinguish
among the rocks, and it is commonly heard before it is seen. The sharp,
short bleat, almost a chirp or squeak, often repeated at rapid intervals
when the pika is alarmed, is distinctive. If the observer remains
motionless, and carefully searches nearby with his eyes, he is almost
certain to see a tiny “rock-rabbit” scamper quickly and with silent,
sure feet across the rocks, to disappear in a crevice or to perch on an
exposed boulder. Should the watcher remain quiet, the pika will resume
its interrupted activities until again disturbed.

    [Illustration: The busy beaver is an industrious engineer.]

The well-chosen shelter of the pika, deep down beneath the rocks,
affords adequate protection from most predators. Only the weasels, and
their relatives, the martens, are capable of following these elusive
creatures through the talus. Undoubtedly the hawks and eagles may strike
suddenly from the air and be successful in capturing a pika less alert
than his fellows, but such occasions must be rare.


                             PACIFIC BEAVER
                  _Castor canadensis leucodonta_ Gray

The beaver is the largest North American rodent, and the species found
in Mount Rainier National Park is the largest of any of the recognized
geographical range. An adult will weigh thirty pounds or more, up to a
maximum of sixty pounds. The form is robust; the tail is broad, flat,
and scaly; the ears are short; the hind feet webbed. The pelage is
composed of short, soft underfur, with long guard hairs. The sexes are
alike in size and color, a dark, glossy, reddish brown above, lighter
brown below. The beaver is aquatic in habit.

_Specimens in park collection:_ Mounted specimen, Longmire Museum, Park
Headquarters.

The geographical range of the beaver extends over most of North America
from the Rio Grande northward.

Beaver are not now abundant in the park, and it is doubtful that they
were ever numerous. Observations have been made in many sections,
notably Fish Creek, Tahoma Creek, along the Nisqually River from the
park entrance to the mouth of the Paradise River, Longmire Meadows, the
Ohanapecosh River, and Reflection and Tipsoo Lakes. Records indicate
that Fish Creek and Tahoma Creek are the sites most extensively used by
beavers during recent years, although intermittent activities have been
noted in the vicinity of Longmire Meadows. A colony on Kautz Creek was
undoubtedly destroyed by the flood of October, 1947.

No other animal played as important a role in the early history and
exploration of this country as did the beaver. This is particularly true
of the Rocky Mountain west, and to a lesser extent of the Northwest. The
fur trade made the beaver pelt a standard of exchange, and to get beaver
the trappers moved westward, seeking out this valuable animal in the
most inaccessible and remote regions. These early explorations, which
had as their incentive fur rather than the expansion of territory, paved
the way for later settlement by those seeking new lands and a better
livelihood in the West. So great was the demand for fur that the
beavers, in the beginning abundant, were reduced in numbers to a point
where returns did not compensate trappers for the risk and hardship
involved.

The first mention of beaver in the park is found in _Mammals and Birds
of Mount Rainier_, Taylor and Shaw, which states:

  “Dr. A. K. Fisher records that several beavers lived at Longmire
  Springs until 1896, when a trapper killed them all.”

By 1905, according to the _Annual Report of the Secretary of the
Interior_, beaver had been exterminated within the boundaries of the
park.

However, by 1919, beaver were again active on Fish Creek, along the
eastern base of Mount Wow, and in December, Mr. Roger W. Toll, park
superintendent, reported two dams, each 100 to 200 feet in length. Mr.
Toll’s observations were set forth thus in a letter:

  “The beavers are now living in these lakes, and fresh signs are
  abundant. There are numerous tracks in the snow leading from the lakes
  to the thickets of alder, elder, and willow which they are eating.
  There is no typical beaver house in the lakes, but the under-water
  entrance to their house can be seen leading under the roots of a fir
  tree about four feet in diameter that stands on the edge of the upper
  lake.”

It is in this immediate vicinity that fairly extensive beaver workings
were observed in November, 1947, including newly repaired small dams and
fresh cuttings.

The house or burrow in the stream bank studied by Mr. Toll appears
typical of the beaver in this area. In other sections, notably Rocky
Mountain National Park, Colorado, where beavers are abundant, an
extensive system of dams and canals is frequently developed on the
smaller streams, with a large house completely surrounded by the
impounded water a central feature of the colony. No such elaborate
workings have been found here. Since the beavers habitually reside in
burrows along the margins of streams they are referred to as
“bank-beavers.” A plausible explanation for this habit is the constant
and ample flow of water, which eliminates the necessity for large dams,
and is adequate to cover at all times the underwater entrances to the
burrows.

A small stream, bordered by cottonwood, alder, and willow, tracing its
course through swampy places or meadow lands at intervals, is the
preferred habitat of the beaver. The bulk of its food is made up of the
bark of the tree species mentioned above, although coniferous trees are
sometimes used, perhaps as an appetizer. The roots of aquatic plants are
eaten also, as well as the smaller roots of tree species. In an active
beaver colony, freshly peeled twigs and branches will be found lodged
against the upstream side of the dam, as well as along the stream and
pond margins.

Much has been written concerning the sagacity, engineering ability, and
industry of the beaver. Certainly “busy as a beaver” is an apt
comparison for the industrious. The amount of tree-felling, food
harvesting, and construction and repair which a colony of beavers will
accomplish overnight is remarkable.

Other characteristics, while impressive, are not the unerring instincts
that were often attributed to the animal by early writers. While the
dams are in most instances sturdily constructed of brush, small stones,
mud, and, at times, sizeable short lengths of trees, a sudden spring
freshet may completely destroy a poorly located structure. That the
beaver exhibits what might be considered good judgment in taking
advantage of natural stream barriers in dam construction is commonly
demonstrated, however. It is not unusual to find trees that have fallen
across water courses, or boulders in or on the margins of streams, used
to provide a portion of a dam, apparently by design rather than by
accident.

The felling of trees is approached in a haphazard fashion, without
regard to the direction of fall. It appears that the beaver, or beavers,
set to work to gnaw the trunk through at a comfortable working height
above the ground, a point they can reach from a sitting position. Where
the tree falls is left entirely to chance. There may be a half circle of
open space in one direction, yet it is quite possible that the tree will
topple in the opposite direction and so lodge before it reaches the
ground. Under such circumstances the beavers may cut another section or
several sections from the butt of the tree, without eventually
accomplishing their purpose.

Nevertheless, to give credit where credit is due, it must be admitted
that the beaver is unique in the animal kingdom by virtue of its feats,
even though these are largely the result of instinct.

Among the natural enemies of the beaver clan are listed most of the
predators; fox, coyote, cougar, bear, wildcat, and where their habitats
coincide, the otter. It seems that all of these exhibit a liking for the
flesh of this largest of rodents, although a painstaking stalk,
consummated by a swift rush or leap is necessary for success, lest the
beaver escape to his natural refuge, the water. The otter, of course,
may enter the burrow or house and kill the young, but it is not likely
that it has the strength required to deal with a full grown animal.


        MOUNT RAINIER APLODONTIA, MOUNT RAINIER MOUNTAIN BEAVER
                   _Aplodontia rufa rainieri_ Merriam

A stout-bodied rodent, about the size of a muskrat, with a tail so short
that it is concealed in the fur. Sexes are alike in size and color;
upper parts light brown with a darker overcast, under parts a dull
brown, sometimes showing white patches. Eyes and ears small.

_Specimens in park collection:_ RNP-80, RNP-104, and a mounted specimen,
Longmire Museum, Park Headquarters.

The various subspecies of aplodontia are found only along the western
coast of North America, from the mountain ranges westward to the
Pacific. It is not known to occur elsewhere in the world.

The Mount Rainier mountain beaver is found only on and in the immediate
vicinity of Mount Rainier, where it is abundant in some localities from
park boundaries to 6,000 feet. It has been reported from the Paradise
River (5,200 feet), Longmire, Reflection Lake, Ohanapecosh, Comet Falls,
the Rampart Ridge Trail, the Nisqually Entrance, in the Nickel Creek
burn, and on the Wonderland Trail on the north side of Stevens Canyon
(3,000 feet).

The common name of this animal is not particularly appropriate, since it
resembles the muskrat and pocket gophers in appearance and habits more
closely than it does the beaver to which it is not closely related. It
prefers a wet habitat, but is not aquatic. It occasionally gnaws through
the small stems of willow, alder, and other shrubs, felling them to the
ground, but it makes no attempt to construct dams or canals. Tiny
rivulets are often diverted to flow through the mountain beaver’s
burrows, perhaps by accident, possibly because the animal intended such
diversion.

The food of the aplodontia includes almost every succulent plant found
in the park, as well as many shrubs and the bark of some trees. Bracken
appears to be on the preferred list. During the summer months the
presence of the animal in a locality is often indicated by bundles of
plants cut and piled in exposed places to cure. The mountain beaver is
more particular in this respect than the pika, the bundles are often
rather neatly arranged on a log or stump, the base of the stems at one
end of the pile, nicely evened up, and the entire bundle intact. After
curing, the bundles are stored in the burrows, to serve as food and
nesting material.

A rather extensive system of burrows from a few inches to a foot or two
beneath the surface, and piles of freshly excavated earth are also
evidence of the workings of this animal. The typical site chosen for
development is ordinarily moist, probably not because the aplodontia is
a lover of water, but because it is in such locations that suitable food
plants abound. The burrows are constructed as exploratory routes in
foraging, with what appears to be a main gallery intersected by a number
of branches. These burrows emerge in thick cover or under logs, with the
openings often connected by well-beaten runways where the overhanging
plants and shrubs afford concealment.

Such extensive workings were found along the Wonderland Trail in Stevens
Canyon in 1947 and 1948. The first indication of the activity of
mountain beavers was the undermined condition of the trail in several
places, where burrows crossed under the path and caved beneath the feet.
Upon investigation many freshly cut stems of bracken were discovered,
and several piles of recently excavated earth, in some instances
sufficient to fill a bushel basket. This site was typical: excellent
cover; several small streams; and deep, very moist soil with few rocks
and an abundance of food plants.

Natural enemies of aplodontia undoubtedly include nearly all of the
predatory animals, particularly the skunks and weasels, which can invade
the dens without difficulty.


                        YELLOW-HAIRED PORCUPINE
                 _Erethizon dorsatum epixanthum_ Brandt

The porcupine is a large, short-legged rodent (total length about 30
inches), clumsy and awkward appearing, slow-moving, bearing long, sharp
quills or spines over most of the body and on the short, club-like tail.
The pelage is composed of soft, brownish-black or black hair. Intermixed
with the pelage, and extending beyond it are the quills and long, stiff,
shiny, yellowish-tipped hairs, which give a yellow tinge to the
underlying dark color. It is impossible to confuse this unique animal
with any other found in the park.

    [Illustration: The almost impregnable armor of the porcupine is
    adequate protection against most predators.]

_Specimens in park collection:_ RNP-42, RNP-47, and a mounted specimen,
Longmire Museum, Park Headquarters.

The several species of porcupine are widely distributed, ranging in the
timbered regions of the northeastern states, the Rocky Mountains from
near the Mexican boundary northward, and from northern California into
Canada and Alaska.

Formerly rare, the first actual record was of a single individual in
Paradise Valley in 1933, porcupines are increasing throughout the
forested areas of the park, although the animal is still considered
uncommon.

An apparent lack of interest or concern in events is probably the
outstanding characteristic of the porcupine. Protected as it is with an
almost impregnable defense of quills, it has no need for speed and shows
little fear of any other creature, even man. If pursued when
encountered, it will waddle away at top speed, which is about equal to a
man’s brisk walk. If crowded closely, the animal will take to the
nearest tree if given the opportunity, or may thrust its head beneath a
convenient root, log, or rock, then thrash the muscular tail about
vigorously in an effort to discourage attack. The tail is indeed a
formidable weapon. The quills are loosely attached to the skin, and are
readily detached when they strike any object. They may even be loosened
by the swinging of the tail, and fly through the air for a short
distance. It is conceivable that quills thus detached might actually
penetrate the skin at short range, but a porcupine can not “shoot” its
quills.

During the winter months “Porky” feeds upon the bark of various trees,
with an apparent preference for the conifers and coniferous foliage. At
times a single tree may furnish food for several days. The porcupine is
not a traveler, and rarely moves far, since food is ordinarily readily
available. In summer bark is eaten at times, but the diet is
predominantly the leaves and new twigs of shrubs, grasses, and succulent
plants.

The inordinate liking for salt exhibited by the porcupine is well known.
Tool handles which bear a trace of dried perspiration are eagerly
devoured; it is common to find table-tops and other articles of
furniture in abandoned camps almost destroyed if they retain any
evidence of bacon, salt pork, or other salty foods. This habit has
created a hearty dislike among campers and woodsmen for the
“quill-pigs,” and they are notorious as camp nuisances.

Because of its nocturnal habits, the porcupine is not often seen. It
prefers to remain concealed in the uppermost branches of a
thick-foliaged tree, or perhaps in a hollow stump or log during the day,
venturing out at dusk to forage.

Natural enemies of this animal include many of the predators, although
the protection afforded by the quills is sufficient to discourage attack
in most instances. Perhaps extremities of hunger result in desperate
attempts upon occasion, but it is difficult to imagine any flesh-eater
coming out better than second-best in an encounter, with one exception.
Observations and records of naturalists, trappers, and other competent
observers throughout the north woods country indicate that the fisher is
an implacable and deadly enemy of the porcupine, which is the fisher’s
favorite prey and which it kills by tearing open the unprotected belly.
Observers have found trapped fishers to contain porcupine quills in the
intestines and in other parts of the body, with no apparent harmful
effects. Since the fisher has been almost exterminated over most of its
range within the United States, however, it cannot be regarded as an
effective check upon the increase in the porcupine population. In rare
instances, coyotes and cougars have been recorded as preying upon the
porcupine, and forest fires have been important in reducing their
numbers in the past.


                           THE VARYING HARES

Two kinds of varying hares, or snowshoe rabbits, are known to occur
within the park. A brief discussion of each follows:

The Washington varying hare, _Lepus americanus washingtonii_ Baird, is a
medium-sized hare, larger than the common cottontail rabbit.
Mammalogists differ in their discussions of the coloration of this
species. The variations of opinion are of interest. H. E. Anthony, in
his _Field Book of North American Mammals_, thus describes the
Washington Varying Hare:

  “Summer and winter pelages both dull, dark reddish brown (no white
  winter pelage); tops of feet more intense reddish; soles of hind feet
  sooty.”

Taylor and Shaw, in _Mammals and Birds of Mount Rainier National Park_,
are in general agreement with Anthony’s description of summer pelage,
but describe the winter coat as follows:

  “In winter in the lowlands the pelage merely puts on a slightly paler
  or more vinaceous cinnamon tinge; but in Mount Rainier National Park a
  white coat is assumed.”

Still another observation was made by Mr. Walter W. Dalquest of the
Department of Zoology, University of Washington. After examining study
skins of the varying hares collected in the park, Mr. Dalquest made the
following comments in a letter addressed to the park naturalist (April,
1939).

  “The snowshoe hares of the entire Western Cascade region are a very
  interesting but mixed up group. I should refer all three of your
  specimens to _Lepus americanus washingtonii_ plus _cascadensis_.

  “The summer specimen from Longmire seems to be typical _washingtonii_
  in color and skull. The white winter specimen seems to be typical
  _cascadensis_ while the very dark specimen (still in winter coat)
  represents an interesting condition found only in the Western
  Cascades, in which the specimens are darker than any other forms of
  _Lepus americanus_ I have ever seen. This character is well
  represented in a large series from Skykomish, Washington, in which the
  winter coat varies from pure white to almost black.”

From these observations it would appear that there is a marked variation
in the winter coloration of _Lepus americanus washingtonii_, and further
that another subspecies of varying hare, _Lepus americanus cascadensis_,
is found in the park.

The Washington varying hare is not abundant in the park, having been
recorded only from the southwestern section, from the park boundary to
an elevation of about 3,000 feet, rarely higher.

It occurs on the western slope of the Cascades to the coast in
Washington, and northward into British Columbia.

The Cascade varying hare, _Lepus americanus cascadensis_ Nelson, is
about the same size as the Washington varying hare. In summer it is a
dark, rusty brown, reddish along the back, darker on the rump; white in
winter.

This hare apparently occurs most frequently in the southwestern part of
the park also, although tracks observed in winter at Yakima Park may
have been those of this species. Its range undoubtedly overlaps that of
the Washington varying hare, but it seems probable that in general it is
found at the higher elevations, 3,000 to 5,000 feet.

The distribution of this species, within its altitudinal range, is about
the same as that of the Washington varying hare.

_Specimens in park collection:_ Washington varying hare, RNP-57, RNP-99,
and a mounted specimen; Cascade varying hare, RNP-98; Longmire Museum,
Park Headquarters.

From the foregoing data, it is apparent that positive field
identification of either species is impossible in most instances. If a
brown hare is observed in winter (mid-October to mid-April) it may be
identified with reasonable accuracy as the Washington varying hare.
However, if the hare is white, it may be either species, particularly if
its habitat is near the elevation of overlapping distribution, 3,000
feet. Since the summer pelage of both species is similar, it is not
possible to differentiate during that season. In general the observer
may expect to find the Washington varying hare at 3,000 feet or lower,
the Cascade varying hare at 3,000 feet or higher. That such
identification can not be considered infallible, however, is
demonstrated by a brown specimen collected near Reflection Lake,
elevation 4,800 feet, in February, and identified as the Washington
varying hare.

The aptness of the common name, varying hare, is easily understood,
since it applies to the seasonal change of color, brought about by the
shedding of the coat during the moult. The term “snowshoe rabbit” is
derived from the long, broad hind feet of the animal, Nature’s wise
provision which permits rapid and efficient progress over deep, soft
snow.

The food preferences and habitats of the snowshoe rabbits are similar.
Both species prefer the dense cover of swamps and thickets, which
provide excellent protection from hawks and owls above as well as
avenues of escape from coyotes, foxes, and other predators on the
ground. Every large predator is the enemy of the snowshoe.

Green plants, grasses, and clover make up the bulk of the food in
summer. The winter diet consists chiefly of the bark, buds and twigs of
various trees and shrubs. Coniferous foliage is often eaten.


                     WESTERN BUSHY-TAILED WOOD RAT
                  _Neotoma cinerea occidentalis_ Baird

This large, gray-brown rat (head and body nine inches, tail eight
inches), can not be mistaken for any other park animal. It closely
resembles a several times magnified white-footed mouse, except that the
tail is so well-haired as to be almost like that of a squirrel. The ears
are conspicuous, the eyes large and lustrous, the feet, underparts, and
underside of the tail are dull white.

_Specimens in park collection:_ RNP-19 and RNP-20, Longmire Museum, Park
Headquarters.

The wood rats are found over the western United States, northward into
western Canada, and in some of the southeastern and mid-western states.

The Mount Rainier species inhabits southern British Columbia, all of
Washington and Oregon, northern California and Nevada, and most of
Idaho. In the park it is found from park boundaries to forest line,
rarely higher, and is not common, although Taylor and Shaw (1919) found
it “unusually abundant in the timber along Tahoma Creek,” and recorded
one individual at Camp Muir (10,000 feet).

Every woodsman has a fund of “pack rat” stories, nearly all of them
emphasizing the thieving propensities of the animal, and every story has
a basis, at least, in fact, because the wood rat will usually pick up
and carry away anything about the camp that strikes his fancy, if such
articles are not beyond his physical powers. At times these treasures
may be found cached away in a bulky pile of dead twigs, leaves and other
debris in some rock crevice, but the wood rats seem to place little
dependence upon these “nests” as a place of refuge, preferring to
retreat into a more adequately protected spot in the rock mass itself.

These animals are ordinarily nocturnal in habit, but may occasionally be
seen by day. They are not excessively shy, and oftentimes create quite a
disturbance with their nightly prowlings when they are found about
campsites or dwellings. Their presence is frequently made known by a
soft “thump-thump-thump” made at regular intervals of about one second
by tapping a hind foot on the ground, rock, or some object.

The wood rat has a distinct musky odor, and a cave, crevice, or cabin in
which they have established residence can be recognized at once, even by
man’s inferior sense of smell, by the atmosphere.

It is readily apparent from the preceding discussion that the reputation
the wood rat has made among woodsmen and campers as a nuisance is not
ill-founded. They are interesting and active creatures, however, not
nearly so unsavory as the name “rat” implies, and in many instances the
entertainment they provide outweighs their less engaging habits.

    [Illustration: The inquisitive and abundant white-footed mice are
    immaculately clean animals.]


               WASHINGTON WHITE-FOOTED MOUSE, DEER MOUSE
                  _Peromyscus maniculatus oreas_ Bangs

The white-footed mouse is about the size of a house mouse, with the head
and body about three and one-half inches in length, the tail about four
and one-half inches. The ears and eyes are large; the tail is
comparatively long, blackish-brown above, white below. The general
coloration over the head and back is a rather dark tawny-brown,
intermixed with black hairs, with a preponderance of black toward the
base of the tail. The underparts are white, with the lead-gray hair
bases showing through; the feet are white. In examining this mouse, the
impression is one of an immaculately clean little animal, definitely at
variance with the usual conception of mice.

_Specimens in park collection:_ RNP-3, RNP-4, RNP-22, RNP-23, RNP-35,
RNP-36, RNP-37, RNP-38, RNP-39, RNP-77, RNP-84, and RNP-91, together
with a mounted specimen; Longmire Museum, Park Headquarters.

The white-footed mice are distributed over nearly all of North America
south of the Arctic Circle.

The Washington species is found in the western part of the state and
northward into southern British Columbia. On Mount Rainier it occurs
throughout the park to elevations well above forest line, and has been
recorded on the summit of the Mountain.

The inquisitive, active, and abundant white-footed mice are attractive
and familiar inhabitants of the woods about the Mountain. They are
readily adaptable to a variety of conditions, and are quick to invade
camps and dwellings in search of shelter and food. They are particularly
fond of cereal grains, and will often damage clothing left within their
reach, since these materials are evidently highly prized for the nest.
Campers will do well to protect food-stuffs and garments from their
foraging instincts.

These animals are nocturnal in habit, it is rare to see them abroad by
day. They feed upon a wide variety of plant seeds and vegetable
material, and are preyed upon by all of the four-footed carnivores, as
well as the owls.


                         RAINIER POCKET GOPHER
                   _Thomomys talpoides shawi_ Taylor

The sturdily built pocket gopher, with its long, sharp, fore claws, tiny
eyes and ears, external cheek pouches, robust body, and short legs, can
hardly be confused with any of the other rodents. The head and body are
about six inches in length, the thinly haired, whitish tail about two
and one-half inches. The color is light brown above, with the
lead-colored hair bases showing through in places; paler brown on the
sides; gray-white below, with white on the throat and a small, irregular
white patch on the nose.

_Specimens in park collection:_ RNP-101, Longmire Museum, Park
Headquarters.

The pocket gophers are widely distributed over western North America,
and are abundant in many regions.

In Mount Rainier National Park the local species is found on the east
side of the park in the Hudsonian Zone above 4,500 feet, usually on the
grassy hillsides and in the open meadows.

These animals are burrowers in the true sense of the word, rarely
venturing above ground, but constructing elaborate systems of connecting
tunnels a few inches beneath the surface. Because of this subterranean
habit they are seldom seen, although the evidences of their presence may
be conspicuous. Mounds of freshly turned earth scattered about over a
meadow indicate that active excavations by pocket gophers are in
progress.

The fore claws are well adapted for the purpose of digging, and as the
burrow progresses, the earth is disposed of by thrusting it out through
a surface opening. Careful observation may be rewarded by a glimpse of
the head, shoulders and forelegs as the gopher accomplishes this
disposal, thus forming the mound of earth, which eventually closes the
emergence-hole. When not in use, these openings are closed by earthen
plugs.

Pocket gophers feed almost exclusively upon the roots and bulbs exposed
by their burrowing activities, although at rare intervals they may move
a short distance from the burrow to gather surface food.

Earth excavated during the winter months is firmly packed in tunnels
which the gopher makes on the surface of the ground beneath the snow.
These winding ridges of earth are revealed by the melting snow as
further evidences of pocket gopher activity.


                            THE MEADOW MICE

Three species of meadow mice are known to inhabit the park, and of
these, two are so similar that the positive field identification of each
is difficult in most instances. Only the Cascade meadow mouse, or water
vole, shows sufficiently distinctive characteristics to permit easy
recognition. Of the two similar species, the Oregon meadow mouse is
probably most likely to be encountered.

The Oregon meadow mouse, _Microtus oregoni oregoni_ (Bachman), is
similar in general coloration to the Olympic meadow mouse, but has
conspicuous ears, is distinctly smaller, and has been found from park
boundaries to 5,000 feet and higher.

The Olympic meadow mouse, _Microtus longicaudus macrurus_ Merriam, is
dark brown above, with slightly paler sides, and with under parts a dull
buff or whitish. The tail is distinctly bicolor, black or brown above,
white below. The ears are inconspicuous. The head and body measure about
five and one-quarter inches, the tail about three and one-half inches.
This mouse is rarely found above the 3,000 foot elevation.

The Cascade meadow mouse, _Microtus richardsonii arvicoloides_ (Rhoads),
is much larger than any of the other species found in the park. The head
and body measure about six inches, the tail a little over three inches
in a typical specimen. In general this species prefers a moister habitat
than the other meadow mice, and is usually found from 4,000 feet to
forest line (6,500 feet). It is the most abundant of the park mammals
found at high elevations, and has been recorded at Camp Muir, 10,000
feet.

_Specimens in park collection:_ Oregon meadow mouse, RNP-27, RNP-32,
RNP-51, RNP-71; Olympic meadow mouse, RNP-31; Cascade meadow mouse,
RNP-5, RNP-26, RNP-48, RNP-49, RNP-50, RNP-59, RNP-60, RNP-75, RNP-81,
RNP-109; Longmire Museum, Park Headquarters.

As the name implies, the general habitats of these rodents are the open
parks and meadows, from park boundaries to above the forest line. They
are locally abundant in many places, and are active throughout the year,
feeding upon the various green and succulent plants, burrowing along the
surface of the ground beneath the snow to find food in winter. Only the
Cascade meadow mouse shows any marked deviation in its habits, being
semi-aquatic, at least in summer, with a marked preference for marshy or
boggy meadows, taking to the water readily to escape danger, and
burrowing along the banks of small streams. In winter this mouse often
seeks the hillsides and normally dryer sites, probably in search of a
more abundant food supply, the change in habitat being encouraged by
abundant winter moisture. These hillside habitats often reveal earthen
tunnels on the ground surface as the snow melts, similar to those made
by the pocket gopher. Mounds of earth thrown up around the burrows of
the Cascade meadow mouse are also similar to the gopher mounds, but may
be distinguished from the latter by the open burrows, often left so,
rather than being closed by earthen plugs.

It is well that the meadow mice are so abundant and prolific, since they
constitute a large portion of the food supply of coyotes, foxes, and
other predators.


        MOUNTAIN LEMMING MOUSE, OLYMPIC PHENACOMYS, HEATHER VOLE
               _Phenacomys intermedius oramontis_ Rhoads

The lemming mouse is similar in appearance and habits to the meadow
mice; the head and body are four and one-half inches to five inches
long; the tail from one to one and one-half inches. The back is a
grizzled gray-brown, showing a yellowish tinge; the belly is gray-white;
the fur is sprinkled with black hairs. The dull color and short tail
distinguish this mouse from all others except the Oregon meadow mouse.
The latter is slightly smaller, the hair is less woolly, but field
distinction is difficult or impossible.

_Specimens in park collection:_ None.

The genus _Phenacomys_ is found in the western United States and most of
Canada, inhabiting the mountain summits and colder zones.

The Olympic phenacomys of Mount Rainier occurs only at the higher
elevations, 4,500 to 8,500 feet in the park, and its range extends into
the Olympic Mountains, as well as southward along the Cascade crest into
central Oregon.

The alpine parks and windswept slopes well above forest line are the
home of the hardy little lemming mice. One of the common names for the
animal, heather vole, is suggestive of the locality where they may be
found, finding shelter in the protection afforded by the low-growing
masses of the heather. Their range is not entirely confined to the
alpine country, however, since records have been established in the
upper forested areas, down to a low elevation of 4,000 feet.

The only conspicuous evidences of the presence of the heather vole are
the tidy, compact winter nests of dried grass, lichen, and other plant
fibers. These nests, constructed on the ground under the snow, are
apparently abandoned when the snow melts, and it is difficult to
discover other signs of the animal’s activities.

Like the meadow mice, the mountain lemming mouse is a staple item in the
diet of the predators.


                        CASCADE RED-BACKED MOUSE
               _Clethrionomys gapperi cascadensis_ Booth

The red-backed mouse is slightly larger than a house mouse; in a typical
specimen the head and body are about four inches long, the tail slightly
less than two inches. The distinguishing characters which separate this
animal from the other mice are the broad, reddish-brown stripe over the
back from the forehead to the base of the tail (this stripe
distinguishes it from the held mice), and the inconspicuous ears and
short tail which are so different from the large ears and long tail of
the white-footed mouse.

_Specimens in park collection:_ RNP-17, RNP-62, RNP-63, RNP-65, RNP-66,
RNP-67, RNP-68, RNP-69; Longmire Museum, Park Headquarters.

The many species of red-backed mice occur generally over the wooded
sections of North America.

The Cascade red-backed mouse is found in the Cascade Mountains from
British Columbia southward into Washington, east into northern Idaho and
northeastern Oregon. In Mount Rainier National Park it occurs generally
from park boundaries to forest line.

The heavily wooded areas of the park are the preferred habitats of the
red-backs. They are usually common in such localities, but are not
locally abundant in colonies, as are the field mice.

The activities of these mice are not confined to nocturnal excursions.
They may be seen at any time of day, and the quiet observer in the deep
woods is almost certain to glimpse them if he is patient enough to watch
for a few moments.


                       NORTHWESTERN JUMPING MOUSE
                   _Zapus princeps trinotatus_ Rhoads

The Northwestern jumping mouse is a little larger than a house mouse,
head and body about four inches, tail about six inches. The back is
dark, sprinkled with buff; a broad band of buff, sprinkled with blackish
hairs, extends along the sides; the underparts are pure white. The long
tail is dull gray above, white below, and almost naked except for a tiny
tuft of dark hair at the tip. This mouse may be easily distinguished
from any other park animal by the long hind legs and tail.

_Specimens in park collection:_ RNP-6, RNP-24, RNP-25, RNP-52, RNP-53,
RNP-54, RNP-58, RNP-73, RNP-76, RNP-92; Longmire Museum, Park
Headquarters.

The jumping mice are found throughout most of the United States from
northern California and North Carolina, northward into Canada to the
Arctic Circle. The Northwestern jumping mouse occurs from northern
California through the Cascades to the coastal region of southern
British Columbia.

In Mount Rainier National Park this animal is found irregularly from
park boundaries to 6,000 feet. It is not common and is rarely seen.

The usual habitats of the jumping mice are the subalpine parks and
meadows, where they may sometimes be abundant in a restricted locality.
They hibernate from early fall until late spring, and during their
period of summer activity they rarely leave the nest during daylight
hours. The nests are on the ground, small and dome-shaped, made of dried
grasses.


                               THE MOLES

Within the park are found three different kinds of moles, two of which
are very closely related and similar in general appearance. The third is
distinct in size and coloration.

The Townsend mole, _Scapanus townsendii_ (Bachman), is considered to be
the largest of its kind on the continent, with a total length of about
eight inches. The body is stout, with tiny eyes, short legs and tail.
The fur is dense and velvety, blackish-brown in color, usually with a
purplish tone.

It is found in “extreme northwestern California, Oregon and Washington
west of the Cascade Mountains” (Jackson). Little is known about its
status within the park. Workings were observed and a specimen collected
at Spray Park (5,500 feet) in 1919.

The coast mole, _Scapanus orarius orarius_ True, is smaller than the
Townsend mole, attaining a length of about six and one-half inches. Its
coloration is black or blackish-brown above, with the underparts more
grayish in tone.

This species is found in the humid coast region of northern California,
Oregon and Washington. It is apparently not common in any part of the
park, but has been collected at Longmire and the Owyhigh Lakes.

The Gibbs shrew-mole, _Neurotrichus gibbsii gibbsii_ (Baird), is a very
small mole, about the size of a house mouse, around four inches in total
length. The entire coloration is dark grey, with the longer hairs
frequently tipped with whitish.

This mole is found in extreme southwestern British Columbia, western
Washington and Oregon west of the Cascade Mountains, and south into
California in the coast region and interior west of the Sierra Nevada
Mountains. It occurs rather commonly throughout the park below 4,000
feet, although an occasional record has been obtained at elevations in
excess of 5,000 feet. Its habitat is around grassy swamps and near
streams.

_Specimens in park collection:_ Townsend mole, none; coast mole,
RNP-105; Gibbs shrew-mole, RNP-21, RNP-106, RNP-112, RNP-114; Longmire
Museum, Park Headquarters.

The mole is often confused with other small mammals, especially the
rodents. However, it does not belong with the rodent group and can
readily be distinguished by its short, very stout front legs which end
in broad, handlike feet with the palms turned outward; and by its
pointed nose; short tail; elongated body with fine, plush-like fur; and
the apparent absence of external eyes and ears.

The mole is one of Nature’s strangest creations. From birth it is
destined to live underground, working diligently in total darkness to
obtain the food necessary for its existence. Its appetite seems never to
be satisfied and captive specimens have been known to eat more than
their own weight in a single day. Earthworms and grubs make up the major
portion of the food eaten, although beetles, spiders, various insects
and occasionally plants are of importance. The mole has the dubious
distinction of being of great value to the farmer because of the worm
pests he destroys, yet is regarded in return as one of the farmer’s
worst pests. A large part of this bad reputation arises from the damage
done growing plants by rodents that use the mole burrow to reach the
tender flower bulbs and growing roots found underground.

While hawks, owls and small mammal predators take a limited number of
moles as food, high water in areas containing their homes constitutes an
important factor in controlling their abundance. The heavy rains and
snow runoff in the park probably has much to do with the local mole
population.


                               THE SHREWS

The smallest of our North American mammals, the shrew, is represented in
the park by six different forms, all closely related and similar in
general appearance.

The wandering shrew, _Sorex vagrans vagrans_ Baird, is a small shrew
with dark brown upperparts and ashy gray underparts. The tail tends to
be bicolor with a dusky color above and paler below.

This species is found from southern British Columbia through western
Washington and Oregon into northern California. Only two records have
been obtained from the park. These came from a specimen trapped at Bear
Prairie (2,000 feet) about three miles south of Longmire and from one
taken in Stevens Canyon (no elevation given). The wandering shrew lives
in areas where there is considerable moisture and a damp, heavy forest
cover.

The Olympic dusky shrew, _Sorex obscurus setosus_ Elliot, is a fairly
large shrew with upperparts brown with a few light-tipped hairs, the
lower parts ashy washed with buff. The tail is brown above and
yellowish-white below.

This shrew is found from the Cascades westward and south as far as the
Columbia River. In the park it has been recorded in a number of
localities ranging from 2,000 to 6,800 feet in elevation. It is normally
found in moist situations where the undergrowth is heavy and is one of
our common shrews.

The cinereous shrew, _Sorex cinereus cinereus_ Kerr, is of medium size
and difficult to separate from the dusky and wandering shrews. It is
distinguished by its small size and pale color.

This species “ranges over most of Alaska, Canada and the northern half
of the United States” (Dalquest). Within the park it has been recorded
only along the Paradise River, and data are lacking regarding its range.

The Trowbridge shrew, _Sorex trowbridgii trowbridgii_ Baird, is a large
shrew, about three-fourths the size of a common house mouse. In
coloration it is black or grayish above, lighter below. The tail is
sharply contrasting blackish above and whitish below.

This shrew is found west of the crest of the Cascade Range in Washington
and Oregon, and has been collected in the park at Ohanapecosh (2,000
feet), Tahoma Creek (2,500 feet), and Longmire (2,700 feet). It prefers
dark woods and moist situations.

The navigator water shrew, _Sorex palustris navigator_ (Baird), is a
large shrew about the size of a house mouse, with small fore feet and
broad hind feet. Its coloration above is dark brown or blackish with
some of the hairs whitish tipped, the underparts are whitish-gray. The
tail is brown above and pale gray below.

This species is found from the Rocky Mountains and the outlying ranges
of British Columbia to southern Colorado, and in California as far south
as Sequoia-Kings Canyon National Park. It is commonly encountered from
the lowest elevations in the park up to around 8,000 feet, and is
usually found along stream banks and at lake outlets.

The Bendire water shrew, _Sorex bendirii bendirii_ (Merriam) is about
the size of a house mouse, a sooty-gray color above and slightly paler
below.

It is found in the Klamath section of Oregon, a narrow strip along the
coast of California, and in the Cascades from Washington to British
Columbia. It has been recorded at elevations ranging from 2,000 to 4,000
feet on the west and south sides of the park. Like all water shrews it
prefers moist areas and is usually found around wet meadows or in the
forest cover near lowland creeks.

_Specimens in park collection:_ Wandering shrew, RNP-89; Olympic dusky
shrew, RNP-55, RNP-88; cinereous shrew, none; Trowbridge shrew, RNP-61;
navigator water shrew, RNP-64, RNP-83, RNP-90; Bendire water shrew,
RNP-1, RNP-56, RNP-72; Longmire Museum, Park Headquarters.

Because of their secretiveness and tiny size the shrews are seldom
observed, although they are relatively abundant in the park. By
stationing oneself in an elevated spot near a grassy stream bank or in a
damp, shady, forested area it is sometimes possible to observe the
actions of these small creatures. While their diet is largely composed
of insects, they do eat such things as worms, as well as small birds and
mammals that they can kill. They are very nervous animals and extremely
courageous hunters, and will attack and kill other mammals much larger
in size. They require an abundance of food to live and will die if
deprived of food for even a few hours. This might lead one to suppose
that they are somewhat weak, but such is not the case. They are active
throughout the year, being seen abroad under even the most rigorous
climatic conditions.


                                THE BATS

Of the four types of bats known to occur in the park, only two are
closely related. These two are very small as compared to their larger
cousins.

The Miller bat, _Myotis yumanensis saturatus_ Miller, is a small bat
with the upperparts dark glossy yellowish brown and the underparts
golden. The sides, chin and throat are somewhat darker than the
underparts. The fur over the entire body is slaty black at the base. The
membranes of the wings are blackish.

This bat is found in the transition zone of British Columbia,
Washington, Oregon and northern California, along the coast.

It has been taken at Longmire, Paradise Valley and Sunset Park. It stays
in the forests of the park, only occasionally being seen above the open
meadows.

The coloration of the Northwestern long-legged bat, _Myotis volans
longicrus_ (True), above is dark brownish, sometimes blackish; the
underparts are dusky brown. The ears and wings are blackish. This bat
cannot be distinguished in flight from the Miller bat.

It is found in the humid coast and mountain region from Admiralty
Island, Alaska, to Monterey County, California.

While it is apparently fairly common at the lower elevations, very few
collections have been made. It has been taken at St. Andrews Park (5,500
feet) and at Longmire.

The silver-haired bat, _Lasconycteris noctivagans_ (Le Conte), is a
medium sized bat with dark brown or blackish coloration above and below.
Many hairs on the back and underparts are tipped with white, with the
white tips most numerous on the middle of the back. The wings are dark
brown.

This bat occurs on the North American Continent north of Mexico, ranging
from the Pacific to the Atlantic.

There is as yet no evidence that this bat actually stays within the park
for any length of time. It is believed that it only moves through during
migration. Records thus far obtained are during September, at elevations
around 5,000 feet.

The Townsend lump-nosed bat, _Corynorhinus rafinesque townsendii_
(Cooper), is of medium size, with long thin ears and two prominent lumps
on either side of the nose. The coloration is dark brown above, somewhat
lighter below, the base of the fur is dark slaty. The ears, feet and
wings are dark brown.

The Townsend lump-nosed bat occurs from southern British Columbia
southward through most of Washington and Oregon, and along the coast
into California as far south as San Francisco.

Only one record has been obtained from the park, a specimen collected at
Longmire in September, 1937.

_Specimens in park collection:_ Miller bat, RNP-85; Northwestern
long-legged bat, none; silver-haired bat, none; Townsend lump-nosed bat,
RNP-93; Longmire Museum, Park Headquarters.

The bats are among the most feared and least known of any of our
mammals. Many people are afraid to have anything to do with them, and
everyone is familiar with the old belief that, given the opportunity, a
bat will fly into one’s hair. Yet the bats that are so common in North
America are weak and entirely harmless. Far from being harmful to man,
they serve a most useful function in destroying various insects. The
worst problem the bat presents is the habit some species have of using
buildings as a place to sleep.

Although possessing a wing-like structure, the bat does not have a wing
in the sense that a bird has. The “wing” consists of a much modified
hand with very long fingers. This is covered with a thin, but very tough
membrane, that enables the animal to fly. The bat’s flight is seemingly
aimless, but is actually purposeful. It is during these “drunken
flights” that it catches the insects upon which it lives.

By far the most astonishing and marvelous feature about the bat’s
anatomy is the delicate mechanism that guides it in flight. This animal
has operated on the principle used by radar thousands of years before
man discovered the device. The hearing is extremely acute and bats are
able to receive sound impulses at a vibration frequency too high for the
human ear. During flight it sends out shrill cries of high vibration
frequency. As these sounds travel out through space they are reflected
back by any object, large or small, that they strike. Through sensitive
ears the bat receives these rebounding sounds and thus is aware at all
times of the nearness of any object. This explains the bat’s uncanny
ability to fly through a room in total darkness without striking even
such small objects as wire or lamp cords. This ingenious device fails
around water, however. Experiments have shown that a small wire
stretched just above the surface of a pond is not “seen” by the bat when
it swoops down to get a drink.

Some bats rest in leafy treetops where they cling to small branches.
Most species stay in hollow trees or caves during the daytime, and “bat
caves” are common in many parts of the country, the most famous one is
at Carlsbad Caverns National Park. While resting or sleeping the bat
hangs head downward, always in a position to drop and fly at any moment.
It is helpless on the ground, and must obtain sufficient elevation to
allow for a few inches of drop before it can fly.

    [Illustration: One of the most elusive animals in the park is the
    coyote.]


                            MOUNTAIN COYOTE
                     _Canis latrans lestes_ Merriam

The mountain coyote resembles a small collie dog in size, with a slender
body, erect, pointed ears, and bushy tail. The upper parts of its body
are light brownish gray, with numerous long, coarse, black hairs. The
under parts are whitish, with the long hairs of the throat tipped with
black. The tail is heavily tipped with black above and light beneath.
The muzzle and crown of the head is a bright yellowish brown.

_Specimens in park collection:_ RNP-98, Longmire Museum, Park
Headquarters.

The geographical distribution of the coyote includes all of western
North America. The mountain coyote is found from British Columbia
southward through Washington, Oregon, and the highlands of the Great
Basin, Sierra Nevada and Rocky Mountains to the plateau region of
northern Arizona and down the Continental Divide in New Mexico to the
Mexican border.

It is found locally throughout the park, at all elevations from the
extreme lower portions to forest line, although usually more abundant in
the vicinity of the old fire burns near the south and west boundaries.

The shrill, wild, evening song of the coyote rising from an open slope
or brushy burn never fails to bring the listener to a rapt and keen
attention. There is a spine-tingling, eerie quality in the call that
seems symbolic of a wilderness land. It is descriptive also, in that it
may sound like one animal or a pack. Usually it is heard at sunset or on
moonlight nights in the fall or winter, as the pack gathers for the
night’s foraging.

The park is not especially well suited to the coyote, as it lacks the
open sagebrush flats and rolling hills that are such important parts of
the animal’s natural environment. Coyotes are highly adaptable animals,
however, and seem to fit themselves into almost any habitat. Having
respect but little fear of man, they are often found even in the farming
districts and near the smaller towns. Wherever there is sufficient food
there seem to be coyotes, even though they are mercilessly hunted in
many such localities.

Food consists mainly of small animals, such as ground squirrels, mice,
chipmunks and marmots, although an occasional deer falls prey to this
wily hunter. Fruits and berries are eaten in large quantities when
available. During the late summer it has been observed catching
grasshoppers in the open meadows, such insects are staple articles of
diet. The wild antics of a coyote as it dives and twists trying to
capture an agile grasshopper, sometimes apparently as a game rather than
in a serious quest for food, afford an amusing picture. As a mouser the
coyote is hard to equal, and it may frequently be seen in the early
evening catching meadow mice. Destruction of deer is not overly
extensive, with the old animals and an occasional unwary fawn being the
principal victims. Once in a while a deer is found that refuses to
become an easy prey and a merry chase often follows—this time with the
coyote beating a hasty retreat with the enraged, wouldbe victim close
behind. There are numerous instances of such chases on record, and
authentic observations of coyotes being knocked down and trampled by
deer.

Coyote pups, normally about five to seven in a litter, are usually born
in April or May and have all the playful characteristics of a puppy dog.
Just as soon as they are able to walk, they may be seen around the
entrance to the den where they tug and pull at each other in mock
ferocity. As they grow older their interest in the outside world keeps
pace with their growth, and by fall they are out learning the serious
business of obtaining food under the direction of the father or mother,
or both. It is during this time that they range in family groups of five
or six animals.


                              TIMBER WOLF
                    _Canis lupus fuscus_ Richardson

The wolf is a large, dog-like animal, with dull yellowish-brown fur,
heavily clouded over the back and tail with black-tipped hairs.
Occasionally it is almost entirely black or grayish. The young are black
at birth, changing later to the adult coloration.

_Specimens in park collection:_ None.

These animals were formerly found over most of the United States,
Canada, and Alaska, but they have been exterminated over much of the
original range. A few wolves are still found in the timbered regions
west of the Cascades from Oregon northward through Washington, British
Columbia and into Alaska.

At one time they were reported from several localities in the park, but
gradually they were killed off throughout central Washington until they
were apparently exterminated in the park prior to 1930. Since that time
single animals have been reported in 1933, 1937, 1941, 1943 and 1947.
These records appear to be those of stragglers that wander into and out
of the park. The wolf can thus be considered as rare in the area today.

The heavily forested ridges and slopes near old fire burns appear to be
the type of habitat preferred, and most of the local records are from
such areas. The wolf seems to prefer the heavy timber for its home, but
uses the more open areas for hunting, as it is in these old burns that
deer, elk, rabbits and other important food sources are found. Being
extremely shy and silent, the animal is seldom seen even when known to
be present.

    [Illustration: The “silver” color phase of the red fox transforms an
    alert and attractive animal into a creature of rare beauty.]

Little is known regarding the family life of the wolf, although the
adults are devoted parents. Apparently the pups number from five to ten,
and are born in March or April. They usually stay pretty close to the
den, which is a large hole in a bank, or a protected nook in a log jam,
rock slide, or similar situation. Here they spend their puppyhood, an
always hungry family even though their parents may bring in large
quantities of food. In the late summer and early fall they are taken out
in a group or pack and taught the essentials of successful hunting.

Powerful and intelligent, the wolf stands out as one of Nature’s finest
predator creations. It is unfortunate that man’s economic interests and
the food habits of the wolf clash, and the continuous campaign of
extermination being waged can have but one inevitable result unless
public appreciation of this now rare wilderness animal increases. Like
other magnificent predators before him, the wolf appears doomed over
most, if not eventually all, of the United States.


                            CASCADE RED FOX
                   _Vulpes fulva cascadensis_ Merriam

The Cascade red fox is about the size of a small dog, with a very
slender body, bushy tail, erect ears and pointed muzzle. It may have
several color “phases” of which the red is the one most often seen. In
the “red” phase the head and upper parts are a straw yellow; ears
blackish and underparts white. The tail is yellowish mixed with black,
with a prominent white tip. The “cross” phase is of the same general
coloration as the red, but has a dark band running across the shoulders
and a dark band down the back, another dark band runs from the chin down
the throat onto the belly. The “black” or “silver” fox is all black with
silver-tipped hairs, excepting the white tip of the tail. A litter of
pups may contain all of the various color phases.

_Specimens in park collection:_ None.

The red foxes occur over most of the United States and Canada. The
Cascade red fox ranges from the northern Sierra Nevadas through the
Cascades of Oregon and Washington.

It is found in the park at all elevations up to forest line.

Shy and cunning, this beautiful animal is seldom seen, yet is relatively
common, especially around the alpine meadows, where its short, sharp
bark is sometimes heard in the late evening. One pair of foxes has
raised families for several seasons within a short distance of the busy
highway to Paradise Valley near Marmot Point, while residents of
Longmire have had the thrill of seeing more than one of the shimmering
“silver” foxes around their yards.

Few animals are so graceful and agile, and to watch a fox stalking a
mouse is to see a gifted expert in the art of hunting. Soundless, alert,
poised, it is a wary mouse that successfully escapes the lightning-like
pounce. Food is largely made up of such things as mice, ground
squirrels, chipmunks, rabbits, wood rats, and other small game such as
birds and insects. Berries and fruit are eaten in season.

    [Illustration: A resident of the dense forest, the marten is a
    member of the weasel family.]


                        NORTHWESTERN PINE MARTEN
                   _Martes caurina caurina_ (Merriam)

This animal is slightly smaller than a house cat, with soft, heavy fur
and a bushy tail. The coloration above is rich, dark brown, darker along
the back and tail; face grayish; a large patch of buff or orange on the
throat and breast.

_Specimens in park collection:_ RNP-44, RNP-108; Longmire Museum, Park
Headquarters.

Martens inhabit the forested regions of northern North America. The
Northwestern pine marten is found from southern British Columbia south
to northern California, in and west of the Cascade Mountains.

It is fairly common from the park boundaries to forest line, especially
around the Paradise and White River valleys.

This beautiful and graceful member of the weasel family is chiefly seen
after nightfall, but is also occasionally encountered along the trails
during the day. At Paradise Valley a pair lived in the old Community
House for several years, and were the source of a keen thrill to the
visitors who saw them playing around the building. For the most part the
marten is a resident of the dense forest. It is an expert climber,
travels through the trees almost as well as a squirrel, and is equally
at home among the talus slopes where it searches for conies.

The marten eats a wide variety of foods, with small game such as mice
most commonly taken. Chipmunks, wood rats, squirrels, rabbits, pikas,
birds and occasionally insects and berries are other important food
items. Young martens are usually born from April to June and normally
number around four to six in a family. The home is located in hollow
trees or logs, or among the rocks.


                                 FISHER
                      _Martes pennanti_ (Erxleben)

The fisher is considerably larger than the marten, although resembling
this near relative in general characteristics. The coloration above
ranges from buffy gray to brownish black, with the under parts black or
blackish. The hair over the head, neck and shoulders has a grayish
appearance. Spots of white may occur on the throat and breast.

_Specimens in park collection:_ None.

The fishers are now confined almost entirely to the northeastern United
States and Canada, west to British Columbia, although rather common in
the Sequoia-Kings Canyon National Park.

Its occurrence within the park is open to question as no records have
been obtained for several years. Investigation in the more remote
sectors may disclose its presence. It was once known to range from the
park boundaries to forest line.

The name “fisher” is somewhat of a misnomer, as the animal is not known
to catch fish or even to live close to streams. It will eat fish if the
opportunity arises, however. It has a wide variety of common names,
including that of pennant marten, pekan, and black cat.

Like the marten, the fisher is a lover of the deep woods and is
reportedly very agile in the trees. It feeds principally upon rabbits,
squirrels, mice, small birds, and frogs. It is not adverse to killing
and eating the marten. One of its most interesting sources of food is
the porcupine, which the fisher manages to kill without serious injury
from the sharp quills. A litter of from two to four young, which are
born in a nest in a hollow log or tree, are raised annually.


                                  MINK
                  _Mustela vison energumenos_ (Bangs)

The body of the mink is somewhat like that of a weasel, but heavier and
considerably larger. The legs and ears are short; the tail is bushy. The
coloration is brown, darkening along the back and becoming almost black
on the tail. Sometimes irregular white streaks or spots occur on the
throat, chest or belly.

_Specimens in park collection:_ None.

The mink occurs over nearly all of North America, from the Gulf of
Mexico north to the Arctic Circle.

Records from the park are few in number and show that it ranges mostly
at the lower elevations, although it has been seen at lakes around 5,000
feet. Most records have been obtained along the Nisqually and
Ohanapecosh Rivers and around Lake Louise.

    [Illustration: The weasel is a tireless and efficient hunter.]

The mink seems to be equally at home in the forests or in the open
meadows—all it requires is a watercourse or lake that will supply food
of some type. Minks are great travelers, often following a stream for a
considerable distance as they hunt. The hunting pattern is erratic and
every little thing that attracts attention apparently bears
investigating. This animal is an expert swimmer and can go long
distances under the water in pursuit of fish. Other foods include almost
any type of small mammal, birds, eggs, frogs and crustaceans.

There seems to be no sense of fear in a mink and in a fight it is an
extremely dangerous adversary. Woe be unto the dog that attempts to
corner it, as even the largest dogs usually are sent home with badly
slashed faces. Like several other members of the weasel family, a mink
gives off a strong odor if disturbed.


                 WASHINGTON WEASEL, LONG-TAILED WEASEL
                _Mustela frenata washingtoni_ (Merriam)

The Washington weasel is the largest weasel known to occur in the park,
measuring around fifteen inches in total length. During the summer it is
dark brown above, darker on the head, with the under parts a dull
yellow, lighter on the chin and throat. About two inches of the tip of
the tail is black. In the winter its coloration may range from a dull
brown, with white underparts, to almost pure white except for a
yellowish tinge on the belly, rump and tail. The black tip of the tail
remains unchanged.

_Specimens in park collection:_ RNP-45, RNP-79, RNP-82, and RNP-94;
Longmire Museum, Park Headquarters.

Weasels inhabit practically all of North America. The Washington weasel
is found in the Cascade Mountains of Washington and Oregon, at least as
far south as Fort Klamath, Oregon. One specimen is reported from the
Chicago Field Museum as having been taken from Happy Lake in the Olympic
Mountains.

In the park it is found from the lower elevations to forest line and
above, being especially common around the open valleys between 4,000 and
5,000 feet.

Around Paradise Valley this weasel has found excellent hunting near the
Lodge and Inn. Here visitors spend considerable time feeding chipmunks
and ground squirrels, and attract large numbers with the quantities of
food offered. With the slopes literally swarming with choice tid-bits,
weasels have taken over each summer and created havoc among the
chipmunks and ground squirrels, not to mention arousing the ire of all
visitors concerned. Yet some check is necessary on these rodents, which
might otherwise multiply beyond the ability of the habitat to support
them. In spite of the efforts of the angry onlookers, mother weasel will
dodge her way out among the fleeing animals and capture one to take home
for her young. Records show that families of weasels have lived beneath
the Lodge and Guide House for several years, reaping a rich harvest of
food each summer from the rodent population.


                          LEAST WEASEL, ERMINE
                      _Mustela ermina gulosa_ Hall

The least weasel is small, with a total length of around ten inches. In
the summer it is dark brown above, darkest on the head, with the
underparts whitish, usually tinged with pale yellow. The tip of the tail
is black. In the winter the coat may range in color from a light brown
among animals at lower elevations to a pure white at higher altitudes.
The tip of the tail remains black, however.

_Specimens in park collection:_ RNP-70, RNP-87, and RNP-111; Longmire
Museum Park Headquarters.

This weasel ranges through the Cascade Mountains from southwestern
British Columbia to Southern Oregon.

It is found in the park throughout the forested regions, and up as high
as forest line, but is most abundant in the lower elevations.

The weasel never fails to impress one with its utter fearlessness and
bewildering agility. It is very inquisitive and will probe around
buildings as readily as the rocky slopes in its seemingly never-ending
search for food. Its victims are limited only by their size, as the
weasel shows no hesitation in attacking anything that it can possibly
kill. For the most part its food consists of small rodents, such as
chipmunks, ground squirrels and mice. Its lust for killing, and the
occasional damage it does around poultry, combine to give it an
exceedingly bad reputation which completely overshadows the economic
good it does. As a natural control of rodent pests in agricultural and
grazing regions it has no equal.


                               WOLVERINE
                      _Gulo luscus luteus_ Elliot

The wolverine has a stocky body, with a powerful head, neck and legs.
The legs and tail are short, the coloration is blackish or dark brown, a
broad, yellowish band beginning at the shoulders runs along either side
and reunites on the animal’s rump. The lower parts are generally
blackish, except for the throat and chest, which are usually mottled
with white or salmon color. Large males may measure as much as three
feet in length, including the tail, which is about ten inches long, and
weigh up to fifty pounds.

_Specimens in park collection:_ None.

The wolverine formerly ranged from the Atlantic to the Pacific Ocean,
through the extreme northeastern states, Wisconsin, Michigan, Minnesota,
North Dakota, Colorado, Utah, and Oregon northward to the Arctic Ocean.
It is believed to be extinct or nearly so over much of its original
range in the United States, although it is reported to occur in fair
numbers in Sequoia-Kings Canyon National Park.

From 1897 to 1918 wolverines were occasionally reported from the park
area, but there have been none recorded since 1933, when one was
observed near the White River Ranger Station.

Known by a variety of common names ranging from glutton, carcajou,
mountain devil, skunk bear, to maneater, the wolverine lives up to any
or all of them. A member of the weasel family, it has somewhat the
general build and habits of a small bear. Fierce and ready to fight
anything that walks, it is a terrifying animal to face. Even such a huge
animal as an elk is attacked without hesitation. Its cunning and
boldness is greatly respected by the Indians, who believe it to be
inhabited by an evil spirit. For the most part it hunts by night and
wanders great distances in search of food.

It will eat any kind of game it can kill, a list which is extensive. Not
being able to entirely satisfy an enormous appetite by killing, the
wolverine also consumes all the dead carcasses that can be located. It
is famous for destruction along trap lines, methodically following the
line and eating anything that has been caught. Suspicious and canny, it
is difficult to lure into a trap, and often if caught will gain its
freedom by smashing even a heavy trap to pieces.


                             PACIFIC OTTER
                   _Lutra canadensis pacifica_ Rhoads

The otter is one of the largest members of the weasel family, somewhat
minklike in general appearance, with a small head and rather short legs.
The feet are webbed and the tail is thick and tapering toward the tip.
The general coloration above is dark chestnut-brown, becoming somewhat
paler on the underparts, throat and cheeks.

_Specimens in park collection:_ Mounted specimen, Longmire Museum, Park
Headquarters.

Otters are geographically distributed over most of North America. The
Pacific Otter is found from Oregon, Washington and British Columbia
northward as far as the coast of Alaska.

Recent years have failed to produce any records from the park, and there
is some doubt that the otter still exists in the area. However, it was
reported by Dr. C. Hart Merriam as fairly common along the Nisqually
Valley in 1897, while there were reports from the park in later years.
Thus it may be that this animal is still present in some more remote
sectors.

Although adapted for living either on land or in the water, the otter
seems to prefer the water. It is a graceful, powerful swimmer, and
delights in frolicking in pools deep enough to allow lots of freedom of
action. Playful by nature, it often amuses itself by sliding down banks
into the water, repeating the performance time and again until a well
defined slide is made. Its food is made up of a wide variety of animal
life, ranging from fish, crayfish, frogs, snakes and birds to small
mammals.

In one way it is unfortunate that the otter has such a valuable pelt,
because it has been relentlessly trapped wherever found; so much so, in
fact, that only in areas protected against trapping is it likely to
continue to hold its own or multiply.


                          LITTLE SPOTTED SKUNK
                 _Spilogale gracilis latifrons_ Merriam

This animal has a slender body about a foot in length, with short legs
and a plumelike tail. The general coloration is black with a prominent
white spot on the forehead, four white stripes running from the head
onto the back, white patches and stripes along the sides, the rump
spotted white, and the tail broadly white-tipped.

_Specimens in park collection:_ None.

The spotted skunks, often erroneously called “civet cats,” are found
over most of the United States.

The little spotted skunk occurs on the west side of the Cascade
Mountains of Washington, and through the Olympic Peninsula to the
westward. The northern limits of range are not clearly defined.

In Mount Rainier National Park it has been reported from near Longmire,
Tahoma Creek and Carbon River. In 1897 records show that it was fairly
common in the Nisqually River Valley, but in recent years observations
have become extremely limited. Its present status must be considered as
uncommon to rare.

This is without doubt the most interesting as well as the handsomest
skunk in the Northwest. Unlike its larger cousin, the Puget Sound
striped skunk, this little animal is graceful and rather agile. Seldom
is it seen during the day time, preferring to roam about in search of
food during the night. Its travels take it over a wide area, and it
shows a fondness for man-made buildings. It has been known to occupy
attics in dwellings, and one disconcerted wife of a National Park
Service employee found one casually strolling through the hallway of her
house one night! It is rather playful and even tempered, and seldom
resorts to the strong perfume it carries.

Its food is varied, and may include almost anything from insects and
reptiles to small rodents. As a mouser it rivals a cat in effectiveness.
Sometimes referred to as the “hydrophobia skunk” or “phoby-cat” it has
had a bad reputation in the past as a carrier of hydrophobia. However,
the belief so prevalent among many people that its bite will always
produce this dread malady has no foundation in fact. Many animals may
carry hydrophobia, and there are few authentic records of the skunks as
carriers.


                       PUGET SOUND STRIPED SKUNK
                 _Mephitis mephitis spissigrada_ Bangs

Larger and stockier than the little spotted skunk, the Puget Sound
striped skunk is black, with a narrow white stripe through the forehead,
a broad white stripe starting on the head and dividing at the shoulders
into two broad stripes that run back along the sides of the body. There
are long white hairs on the tail; the tip of the tail is black.

_Specimens in park collection:_ RNP-43, Longmire Museum, Park
Headquarters.

The Puget Sound striped skunk is found from northwestern Oregon through
the lowlands of western Washington and into the Puget Sound section of
southern British Columbia.

In the park it has been recorded only once. This lone record was from
near the Nisqually Entrance where one was killed on the highway by an
automobile.

This type of skunk is well known throughout the United States. Its
cousins through the Middle West, East and South are familiar to every
farm boy. Its struggle for existence has been seriously threatened in
many localities because of the value of its fur. Because it prefers open
country to dense forests and mountains, it occupies the same regions as
man.

The skunk is by nature a timid and gentle animal, and by moving slowly
it is possible to approach one with no fear of disastrous results.
However, practically anyone will agree that it is a safer course to
simply let the skunk go its way unmolested. The powers of persuasion it
possesses are not to be taken lightly!


                          NORTHWESTERN COUGAR
                _Felis concolor oregonensis_ Rafinesque

The cougar is the largest of the cats found in the region, measuring up
to more than eight feet in total length and weighing 150 pounds or more.
The body is slender, with a small head and long tail. Its coloration
above may range from reddish brown to gray brown, darkest along the
back. The underparts are whitish with the light areas extending forward
as far as the chin. The tail is brown with a prominent black tip. Young
cougars are somewhat lighter in color, with large dark spots along the
back and sides.

_Specimens in park collection:_ Mounted specimen at the Forest House at
Ohanapecosh.

Cougars, or mountain lions, were formerly found over practically all of
the United States, but are now extinct over most of their original
range.

The Northwestern cougar ranges from northern California through Oregon
and Washington into British Columbia. It is fairly common in some parts
of its range.

In the park it may be found from the lower elevations up to forest line.
Most records have come from around the Nisqually River drainage and from
the west side of the park. However, it is apparently well distributed
throughout the region.

Probably no animal found within the park affects the visitor as does the
cougar. To many people it is regarded as a highly dangerous,
blood-thirsty creature awaiting only a chance to pounce upon some
unsuspecting hiker. On the contrary, there are few animals in the woods
that are as shy or that run faster from humans than does the cougar. The
chances of actually observing one in the wilds are very remote, as the
lion usually sees without being seen, and beats a hasty retreat.

Much has been said pro and con about the ability of the cougar to emit a
“scream.” Much depends upon the person’s conception of what makes up a
“scream.” For the most part the cougar is silent, but contrary to what
is often claimed, it does have the ability to express itself vocally. At
times it may utter a loud cry that reminds one somewhat of the caterwaul
of a domesticated tomcat. One female lion in a zoo gave a long series of
such squalls when her kitten was taken from her. The so-called “woman in
agony” scream, so often attributed to the cougar, is more likely that of
the grown young of the great horned owl.

The cougar is also well known because of its great liking for venison,
and without doubt it accounts for several deer a year. To say that a
lion kills large numbers of deer each year (some persons claim as high
as 100 per year) is something that needs clarification. There is little
doubt that when deer are abundant a lion will get a considerable number;
conversely when deer are not common the number taken will be low. Under
natural conditions the lion serves as an important “control” upon the
numbers of deer in any given region, for the most part killing old
animals that have passed their prime or young deer that aren’t
sufficiently alert, so offering no real threat to the deer population as
a whole, but definitely helping to preserve forest reproduction from
destruction by preventing an excessive multiplication of deer.


                      BOBCAT, NORTHWESTERN WILDCAT
                   _Lynx rufus fasciatus_ Rafinesque

The bobcat is a typical member of the cat tribe, and resembles the
common domestic cat in many respects. It differs in size, being perhaps
twice as large, has longer legs, a very short tail, and big feet. The
Northwestern Wildcat is a rich rufous brown over the back, grizzled with
black; paler on the sides; with white underparts splotched with black.
The legs are barred with dark brown and black. The tail is dark brown
above with black bars, the extreme tip and underside is white. The ears
are slightly tufted, the side whiskers or throat ruff are conspicuous.

_Specimens in park collection:_ Mounted specimen, Longmire Museum, Park
Headquarters.

Bobcats are found in all of the United States, and northward into
western Canada.

The Northwestern wildcat occurs in northwestern California, Oregon,
Washington, and southwestern British Columbia. The cats are uncommon in
Mount Rainier National Park, where their range is apparently confined
mostly to the lower elevations near the southern and western boundaries.

Of all the wild creatures of the woods, the bobcat is perhaps the
shyest. Many woodsmen of several years experience can count upon the
fingers of one hand the cats they have seen, with the exception of those
caught in traps or treed by dogs. Often it is only by observation of
their tracks or sign that their presence is revealed. This is all the
more remarkable when it is understood that like domestic cats, they hunt
by day as well as by night.

Their habits are typically cat-like. They prey upon rodents and birds,
and may occasionally kill deer, particularly fawns.


                              CANADA LYNX
                   _Lynx canadensis canadensis_ Kerr

The lynx is like the bobcat in size and build, but is lighter in color,
and may further be distinguished by the black tipped tail, longer ear
tufts, more conspicuous side whiskers, and broad spreading feet.

_Specimens in park collection:_ None.

The range of the lynx is principally in Canada, although it extends into
northern Oregon in the Northwest, southward in the Rocky Mountains into
Colorado, and as far south as Pennsylvania in the northeast.

Taylor and Shaw, in _Mammals and Birds of Mount Rainier National Park_,
1927, observe that, “The shy and secretive habits of the members of the
cat tribe make their study unusually difficult. At the outset one finds
himself practically restricted to an examination of tracks and sign.
These indicate the abundance of cats of the genus _Lynx_ (either lynx or
bobcat) in suitable locations throughout the park. The Canada lynx is
confined to higher portions of the park, the bobcat to lower altitudes.
J. B. Flett reports the capture of a Canada lynx some years ago by C. A.
Stoner in the Sawtooth Range just south of the park.

  “Tracks and sign ... were most in evidence on the backbone ridges at
  or just above timberline.”

For the past several years there have been no authentic records of the
Canada lynx in the park, and it is extremely doubtful that the animal
now occurs within park boundaries.



                           HYPOTHETICAL LIST


Although not known to occur in Mount Rainier National Park prior to the
date of this publication, the following mammals may be recorded:


  Alaska Brown Bat, _Myotis lucifugus alascensis_ Miller
  Longeared Bat, _Myotis evotis pacificus_ Dalquest
  Northwest Coast Bat, _Myotis californicus caurinus_ Miller
  Big Brown Bat, _Eptesicus fuscus bernardinus_ Rhoads
  Puget Sound Weasel, _Mustela ermina streatori_ (Merriam)
  Townsend Chipmunk, _Tamias townsendii townsendii_ Bachman
  Yellow Pine Chipmunk, _Tamias amoenus affinis_ Allen
  Oregon Flying Squirrel, _Glaucomys sabrinus oregonensis_ (Bachman)


The occurrence of the following mammals was listed by Taylor and Shaw,
_Mammals and Birds of Mount Rainier National Park_, 1927, as follows:


  Muskrat, _Ondatra zibethicus osoyoosensis_ (Lord). “In lower portions
          of the park; apparently now trapped out within its
          boundaries.”
  Norway Rat, _Rattus norvegicus norvegicus_ (Erxleben). “Here included
          on the authority of J. B. Flett, who has observed it at
          Longmire.”
  House Mouse, _Mus musculus_ Linnaeus subsp? “At Longmire; at present
          scarce, perhaps extirpated.”


It is believed that the three species above are not now found within the
park.



                              BIBLIOGRAPHY


  ANTHONY, H. E.
    1928 _Field Book of North American Mammals. G. P. Putnam’s Sons, New
          York._


  BAILEY, V.
    1936 _The Mammals and Life Zones of Oregon, North American Fauna,
          Number 55, U. S. Department of Agriculture,  Bureau of
          Biological Survey, Washington, D. C._


  BROCKMAN, C. FRANK
    1947 _Flora of Mount Rainier National Park. U. S. Department of
          Interior, National Park Service, U. S. Government Printing
          Office, Washington, D. C._


  DALQUEST, WALTER W.
    1948 _Mammals of Washington. University of Kansas Publications,
          Museum of Natural History, Volume 2._


  HAMILTON, W. J. JR.
    1939 _American Mammals. McGraw-Hill Book Company, Inc., New York._


  SETON, ERNEST THOMPSON
    1929 _Lives of Game Animals, Volumes 1-4. Doubleday, Doran and
          Company, Inc., Garden City, New York._


  TAYLOR, W. P., and SHAW, W. T.
    1927 _Mammals and Birds of Mount Rainier National Park. U. S.
          Department of Interior, National Park Service, U. S.
          Government Printing Office, Washington, D. C._
    1929 _Provisional List of the Land Mammals of the State of
          Washington. Occasional Papers of the Charles R. Conner Museum,
          Number 2._


  WRIGHT, GEORGE M., and THOMPSON, BEN H.
    1935 _Fauna of the National Parks of the United States, Fauna Series
          Number 2. U. S. Government Printing Office, Washington, D. C._


    1905 _Annual Report of the Secretary of the Interior, U. S.
          Government Printing Office, Washington, D. C._


    1923-1938 _Mount Rainier National Park Nature Notes, Volumes 1-13._


    1931-1948 _Annual Wildlife Census, Mount Rainier National Park._



                         INDEX OF COMMON NAMES


  BAT
      Alaska Brown, 82
      Big Brown, 82
      Long-Eared, 82
      Miller, 61
      Northwest Coast, 82
      Northwestern Long-Legged, 61
      Silver-Haired, 62
      Townsend Lump-Nosed, 62
  BEAVER
      Mount Rainier Mountain, 43
      Pacific, 39
  BEAR, Olympic Black, 24
  BOBCAT, 79
  CHIPMUNK
      Cooper, 31
      Hollister, 31
      Townsend, 82
      Yellow Pine, 82
  COUGAR, Northwestern, 78
  COYOTE, Mountain, 64
  DEER
      Columbian Black-tailed, 13
      Rocky Mountain Mule, 18
  ELK
      American, 19
      Roosevelt, 20
  FISHER, 70
  FOX, Cascade Red, 67
  GOAT, Cascade Mountain, 21
  GOPHER, Rainier Pocket, 52
  HARE
      Cascade Varying, 48
      Washington Varying, 47
  LYNX, Canada, 80
  MARMOT, Cascade Hoary, 28
  MARTEN, Northwestern Pine, 68
  MINK, 71
  MOLE
      Coast, 58
      Townsend, 57
      Gibbs Shrew-Mole, 58
  MOUSE
      Cascade Meadow, 54
      Cascade Red-Backed, 56
      House, 82
      Mountain Lemming, 55
      Northwestern Jumping, 56
      Olympic Meadow, 54
      Oregon Meadow, 53
      Washington White-Footed, 51
  MUSKRAT, 82
  OTTER, Pacific, 75
  PIKA, Cascade, 38
  PORCUPINE, Yellow-Haired, 44
  RACCOON, Pacific, 26
  RAT
      Norway, 82
      Western Bushy-Tailed Wood, 49
  SHREW
      Bendire Water, 60
      Cinereous, 60
      Navigator Water, 60
      Olympic Dusky, 59
      Trowbridge, 60
      Wandering, 59
  SKUNK
      Little Spotted, 76
      Puget Sound Striped, 77
  SQUIRREL
      Cascade Flying, 36
      Douglas Pine, 34
      Oregon Flying, 82
      Washington Mantled Ground, 33
  WEASEL
      Least, 73
      Puget Sound, 82
      Washington, 72
  WOLF, 66
  WOLVERINE, 74



                       INDEX OF SCIENTIFIC NAMES


  Aplodontia rufa rainieri, 43
  Canis latrans lestes, 64
      lupus fuscus, 66
  Castor canadensis leucodonta, 39
  Cervus canadensis nelsoni, 19
      canadensis roosevelti, 20
  Citellus saturatus, 33
  Clethrionomys gapperi cascadensis, 56
  Corynorhinus rafinesque townsendii, 62
  Eptesicus fuscus bernardinus, 82
  Erethizon dorsatum epixanthum, 44
  Felis concolor oregonensis, 78
  Glaucomys sabrinus fuliginosus, 36
      sabrinus oregonensis, 82
  Gulo luscus luteus, 74
  Lasconycteris noctivagans, 62
  Lepus americanus cascadensis, 48
      americanus washingtonii, 47
  Lutra canadensis pacifica, 75
  Lynx canadensis canadensis, 80
      rufus fasciatus, 79
  Marmota caligata cascadensis, 28
  Martes caurina caurina, 68
      pennanti, 70
  Mephitis mephitis spissigrada, 77
  Microtus longicaudus macrurus, 54
      oregoni oregoni, 53
      richardsonii arvicoloides, 54
  Mus musculus, 82
  Mustela ermina gulosa, 73
      ermina streatori, 82
      frenata washingtoni, 72
      vison energumenos, 71
  Myotis californicus caurinus, 82
      epotis pacificus, 82
      lucifugus alascensis, 82
      volans longicrus, 61
      yumanensis saturatus, 61
  Neotoma cinerea occidentalis, 49
  Neurotrichus gibbsii gibbsii, 58
  Ochotona princeps brunnescens, 38
  Odocoileus hemionus columbianus, 13
      hemionus hemionus, 18
  Ondatra zibethicus osoyoosensis, 82
  Oreamnos americanus americanus, 21
  Peromyscus maniculatus oreas, 51
  Phenacomys intermedius oramontis, 55
  Procyon lotor psora, 26
  Rattus norvegicus norvegicus, 82
  Scapanus orarius orarius, 58
      townsendii, 57
  Sorex bendirii bendirii, 60
      cinereus cinereus, 60
      obscurus setosus, 59
      palustris navigator, 60
      trowbridgii trowbridgii, 60
      vagrans vagrans, 59
  Spilogale gracilis latifrons, 76
  Tamias amoenus affinis, 82
      amoenus ludibundus, 31
      townsendii cooperi, 31
      townsendii townsendii, 82
  Tamiasciurus douglasii douglasii, 34
  Thomomys talpoides shawi, 52
  Ursus americanus altifrontalis, 24
  Vulpes fulva cascadensis, 67
  Zapus princeps trinotatus, 56



                                _Notes_



                          Transcriber’s Notes


—Retained publication information from the printed edition: this eBook
  is public-domain in the country of publication.

—Corrected a few palpable typographical errors.

—In the text versions only, text in italics is delimited by
  _underscores_.





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