Thursday, May 26, 2016


Ocracoke has historically not had an abundance of non-human mammals. However, during the last several decades squirrels, deer, raccoons, and mink have either been introduced deliberately, have swum to the island, or otherwise found their way here. They seem to be thriving. There might even be possums on the island, and bears have been known to occasionally swim over here from the mainland. Of course, we have mice and rats (what area of the country doesn't?)

One of the cutest critters is the rabbit. They are seen most frequently in the early morning hours nibbling in the mowed grass beside NC 12. I believe this is a marsh rabbit. I took the photo a few days ago. He/she didn't seem frightened until I approached within a couple of feet.

This month's Ocracoke Newsletter is the dramatic story of life-saver Rasmus Midgett and his rescue of the crew of the barkentine Priscilla in August, 1899. You can read it here:


  1. Anonymous8:24 AM

    Gee, a coastal re$ort area I visit calls their critters Beach Mice. If you preface anything with Beach it seems better. Beach opossum, beach rats, beach bunnies, beach deer, beach bare, beach mink etc,etc. Forrest G.

    1. Anonymous9:24 AM

      Beach bare is a species sometimes seen on Ocracoke.

  2. Anonymous2:20 PM

    we already have coyote's around the Bodie Island lighthouse. Their feces is all around the path leading to the bird observation platform. Just look over the side. There are piles all over, they are not deer but coyote droppings. It looks like dog's just a matter of time before they come trotting across the bridge, if they haven't already. The rabbits and small rodents are there as a source of food for coyotes. You don't want them on the ocracoke. your dogs,cats,rabbits will disappear in the night. I think I read where foxes were reported there a while back. Kinda makes a carefree walk in the early morning in the woods a thing of the past.

  3. Anonymous9:57 AM

    I am glad to read that responsible dog owners on your island remove their pet's waste from public areas. It is comforting to know that the foul piles of poo have nothing to do with a large dog set free to purge on public park land. If it is true that the droppings are from coyote and the piles are all over and serve as evidence of the presence of coyote, the previous poster makes a case for keeping one's pet inside " dogs cats rabbits will disappear in the night." Now ,if the pets are not put into harms way and kept sheltered then I suppose that would increase the chance that a "carefree walk in the early morning in the woods," would be less so. If one extraplotates that hungry coyote will be moved to prey upon carefree woods walkers but wait care free in the woods really, you could trip over a tree root, get stung by a bee, shot at by deer hunters, bit by a snarling unleashed dog, one should always maintain situational awareness be alert at all times.DD