About the Study Guide

You are looking at a preview of what’s in the Today's Hunter in South Carolina Course. Feel free to look around, but you’ll need to register to begin progress toward getting your Hunter Education Certificate.

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Whatever you’re hunting, a basic understanding of an animal’s characteristics will help you develop an effective strategy for identifying and tracking it.

Birds over marshland

Animals can be identified by four basic characteristics.

Distinctive Markings
The black cheek patch on male pronghorns; the “flags” of the white-tailed deer; the face pattern on a gray fox; the green head on a mallard drake; the red, white, and blue on the head of a male turkey
Sounds
The wild call of the sandhill crane; the familiar honk of the goose; the gobble of a strutting “tom”; the grunt of the deer; the howl of the coyote
Movement
The bounce of mule deer; the fast or slow wing beats of some waterfowl; the zigzag in-flight pattern of the common snipe when flushed
Group Behavior
Flock patterns, such as the familiar “V” shape of certain migratory birds; various types of herd behavior

Further study will help you learn other ways to identify and understand your quarry, including signs the animal leaves, camouflage capability, and behavior.