Friday, February 15, 2008

Who Am I?

I have picked up two skulls of this type while out here on survey and am not sure what species this is. Faunal identification isn't my strong suit and I have no references with me. It's not canid, but not sure where to go - ringtail? badger?

More expert opinions than mine requested.

13 comments:

Teddy said...

Skull looks like raccoon to me. Do the canine teeth had sharp edges? Raccoon teeth do. Skull looks too small to be a ringtail and not big enough to be badger, although I don't know the local fauna.

Teddy Moritz

Neutrino said...

What about a pine marten?


Comparison:

http://www.skullsunlimited.com/graphics/sm-275-lg.jpg

-R. A. Wilderson

Steve Bodio said...

Strong vote for badger, perhaps not mature-- how long is it? (Should have looked more carefully :-)-- general shape and stoutness, sagittal crest, habitat (which is wrong for marten, which is also smaller and more delicate.)

Ringtail has slender nasal bones and a less "triangular" skull.

Mike Spies said...

Where Reid is working there have been no pine martens since the Pleistocene era. The skull doesn't look that old.

John Carlson said...

I have to agree with Steve and vote for a badger too. It looks very stout and broad.

Anonymous said...

Yahoo image search suggests racoon

matt

batwrangler said...

I like Steve's badger id. Although it's a bit hard to tell from the angle, the back of that skull looks too long for a raccoon.

Reid Farmer said...

I think badger might be it. The area is awfully dry for raccoon. Also I looked at a California Natural Diversity Data Base (CNDDB) map that our biology staff prepared for the project and we got two hits for badger within 5 miles of the project area.

I'll try to put up a clearer picture with a scale.

Thanks guys!

batwrangler said...

Really good look at a raccoon skull here: http://www.d91.k12.id.us/skyline/teachers/robertsd/raccoon.htm

And an American Badger here: http://www.digimorph.org/specimens/Taxidea_taxus/

Anonymous said...

My immediate reaction before seeing the whole picture with pen for scale was some kind of Mustelid. When I was preparing study skins a zillion years ago I was always struck at how much *smaller* the skulls ended up being than I would have expected. Take away the meat, skin, and fur and there isn't that much underneath!

My vote is for badger.

Annie Fitt

Chas S. Clifton said...

Based on the robust nature of the skull, I too will jump on the Badger Bandwagon.

PBurns said...

Teddy is right that badger and coon look about the same from the side, but not from the top. See >>

http://www.terrierman.com/skullery.htm

A top shot will tell you, but I suspect badger

Patrick

Chas S. Clifton said...

Nude web cam photos of British badgers.