birdandhike logo
Home | Postcards
Unidentified Scat in a Shallow Desert Cave

If anybody has a clue about the creature responsible for depositing these scats, please let me know. It appears to be the deposit of a flying animal, but the scats do not resemble those of birds or bats. My guess is that they were deposited in the spring of 2009. I first saw them in mid-May, and there was nothing new a month later. I also found one more of these scats in a small cave a few miles from this one.

If you know or just have ideas, send me an email.

Unidentified Scat Just inside the mouth of a small cave near a spring in the Mojave Desert northeast of Las Vegas, Nevada, there is a small dark hole in the ceiling. The hole is oval (about 2 inches wide by 6 inches long) and who knows how deep. It appears that something has been flying up into the hole and pooping along the way. It is hard to see in this first photo, but there are several scats on the wall just below the hole.
Unidentified Scat Numerous scats scattered on the walls below the dark hole.
Unidentified Scat Scat on the walls
Unidentified Scat These scats were below a small overhang, so they could not have fallen from above. It appears that they were flung onto the wall while the creature was flying inside the cave.
Unidentified Scat

Scat on the floor. All of the scats are about 3-6 cm long.

Unidentified Scat The scat seems to be covered in a mucoidal material that dries to a papery thin, translucent film.
Unidentified Scat Inside the scat, the material is small, fragmentary particles.
Unidentified Scat Scat on rocks on the floor.
Unidentified Scat Scat dripping down wall near the floor.
Unidentified Scat Scat near the floor. Note how the dried mucoidal material is peeling away.
Unidentified Scat Unidentified scat adjacent to bird scat. It appears that Rock Wrens use a small ledge inside the cave.
Unidentified Scat Unidentified scat and bird scat.
Unidentified Scat In this close-up, the prey items can be seen, but it is difficult to tell if they are insect parts.
Unidentified Scat For comparison, this is a typical pile of bat scat (guano) on the floor of an old building.
Unidentified Scat Close-up of typical guano. These are small, elongate pellets that are not covered in mucous.

Note: All distances, elevations, and other facts are approximate.
copyright; Last updated 091204

      Copyright, Conditions, Disclaimer Jim Boone's Home Page