San Francisco Bay is situated along the Pacific Flyway and is the largest estuary on the west coast. More than 280 species of birds have been sighted on the Don Edwards San Francisco Bay National Wildlife refuge and millions of individuals fly through the area during peak migrations. In addition to birds, the refuge provides habitat for mammals, reptiles, amphibians, and invertebrates.
Several federally-listed threatened and endangered species occur on the refuge including the salt marsh harvest mouse, Ridgway's Rail (formerly California Clapper Rail), and Western Snowy Plover. Go to our Endangered Species photo gallery (coming soon) to view some of these species.
Waterfowl, shorebirds, wading birds, and raptors are just some of the types of birds you will see on the refuge. Peak times for birds on the refuge is during the spring and fall migrations. Millions of birds also choose to winter at the refuge. Go to our photo gallery (coming soon) to view images of birds.
Though established for migratory birds and endangered species, the refuge provides home for several small mammals including the California gray fox, ground squirrel, and voles. Harbor seals, the largest mammal on the refuge, can be found hauled out in the salt marshes or swimming in the sloughs.
Reptiles, amphibians, fish, and invertebrates round out the rest of the wildlife that occur on the refuge. Gopher snake, fairy shrimp, and sturgeon are just some of the species that benefit from the refuge's protection.
Page Photo Credits Red-winged Blackbird/Bill Purcell, Salt Marsh Harvest Mouse/Larry Wade, Eared Grebe/Jeffrey Yung, Gray Fox/Pelican Media, Gopher Snake/Peter Cervantes
Last Updated: Oct 30, 2014