San Diego Specialist Certification 4/3/2016
Dan Hansche and Kersey Lawrence organized a Track and Sign Specialist Certification in the deserts near San Diego, California on April 2-3, 2016. Specialist Certifications are arduous. Participants have to answer 50 very difficult questions over 2 days. Two evaluators (1 standard and 1 external) are present at Specialist Certifications to ensure reliability and consistency. Casey McFarland served as external evaluator.
We saw the tracks of 27 species, including 15 mammals, 5 birds, 3 herps, and 4 invertebrates. We spent the first day near Lake Morena where we saw harvest mouse tracks, tiny baby cottontail tracks, a place where a bobcat took a drink of water, beautiful and impossibly small lizard track in perfect mud, and cicada eggs under a branch.
We spent the second day at Scissor Crossing in the Anza-Borrego Desert where we saw some tough gray fox and deer tracks, rabbit urine stains, lizard claw marks, woodrat scat, and quail dust baths.
Congratulations to all who attended, we learned a lot and every participant earned a level 3 or higher. I especially want to recognize Dan Hansche and Jerry Maserjian who earned their Track and Sign Specialist Certificates! A big thanks to Dan and Kersey for organizing this certification. I also want to thank Ray Nicholson for assisting. This was a truly dedicated group of some amazing trackers and I’m thrilled to see them all achieve their Specialist Certificates!