Kern National Wildlife Refuge
California and Nevada Region

Mammals of the Kern National Wildlife Refuge

Twenty-eight species of mammals have been found on the refuge. Most mammals are strictly nocturnal so daytime observation is limited. Ground squirrels and coyotes are the only frequently seen mammals during daylight. Visitors to the refuge will seen many species of birds and a few reptiles in their search for elusive resident mammals. The summer months can be extremely dusty, hot and dry. Refuge ponds are generally dry during the May through August period resulting in limited opportunities for wildlife observation.


Coyotes are occasionally encountered on the refuge during the day. Photo courtesy Steve Laymon.

Striped Skunks sometimes can be found hunting during daylight. Photo courtesy Steve Laymon.

California Ground Squirrels are the most frequently encountered mammals on the refuge. Photo courtesy Steve Laymon.


Virginia opossum Didelphis virginiana 
Buena Vista Lake shrew  Sorex ornatus relictus
Mexican free-tailed bat  Tadarida brasiliensis
Raccoon  Procyon lotor
Striped skunk        Mephitis mephitis
Western spotted skunk  Spilogale gracilis
Long-tailed weasel  Mustela frenata
Badger  Taxidea taxus
Coyote  Canis latrans
San Joaquin kit fox  Vulpes macrotis mutica
Bobcat  Felis rufus
Cattle Bos taurus
San Joaquin antelope squirrel  Ammospermophilus nelsoni
California ground squirrel   Spermophilus beecheyi
Botta's pocket gopher  Thomomys bottae
San Joaquin pocket mouse  Perognathus inornatus
Heermann's kangaroo rat  Dipodomys heermanni
Tipton kangaroo rat  Dipodomys nitratoides nitratoides
Beaver Castor canadensis
Southern grasshopper mouse Onychomys torridus
Deer mouse   Peromyscus maniculatus
Western harvest mouse  Reithrodontomys megalotis
California vole   Microtus californicus
Muskrat  Ondatra zibethicus
Beaver   Castor canadensis
Black rat Rattus rattus
House mouse Mus musculus
Desert cottontail   Sylvilagus audubonii
Black-tailed jackrabbit   Lepus californicus 


Last updated: March 24, 2008