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Airdate: May 09, 2012
Scientist: Tom Brown

Tracker - Subtleties of Tracking

Tracker - Subtleties of Tracking
In nature, even the slightest sound can tell a tracker many things.

Transcript:
Tracker Subtleties of Tracking

Music; Ambience: birds sounds, walking

TB: If you're tracking a person or an animal in the woods, you won't be only using your eyes.
I'm Jim Metzner and this is the Pulse of the Planet.

TB: You know, people think tracking is just looking at tracks on the ground. It's the whole biosphere.

JM: Tom Brown, Jr. has authored many books on tracking and survival. He's been teaching and honing his skills as a master tracker for over 40 years.

TB: You picture a quiet pond and you throw that rock in, there's that splash and then a ring or a wave comes off it followed by another and another, that's how things move in nature. There's a normal ebb and flow, and what happens, is when anything comes along to disturb it, it sends this crescendo of sound and motion that carries for huge distances. So if a fox or a coyote were to move a mile from here, you'd hear the initial splash. The jays would go off, the gray squirrels, the groundhogs would scream or squeal and dive down their holes. Now, animals outside of that area hear this commotion, they're not gonna go about their daily activity. They're gonna stop their gonna listen, their gonna react and then it keeps going and going and going until finally it falls on trained ears. And you say, "Ah, a fox is moving, or a coyote, a mile away.". When you track a sniper, you're here looking at the tracks, but you're also listening to the symphony of where that man is moving, where the deer are moving, because, everything in nature has a different voice, a different sound. A man, his concentric rings will be different from that of a mountain lion, different from that of a fox, different from that of a weasel. You know, so nature reacts differently to each predator or even non-predator animals.

JM: More on tracking with Tom Brown, Jr. in future programs. I'm Jim Metzner and this is the Pulse of the Planet.