Seasons of Wildlife


No matter the season, Alaska is a rugged and awe inspiring place. Wildlife abounds across the landscape in every season on the refuge.

  • Spring

    Goldeneyes and merganser

    Spring is heralded by massive flocks of migrating birds, descending on any open water. As ice recedes from rivers, beluga whales press upstream to devour smelt. Daylight hours are long and bright.

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  • Summer


    Summer on the refuge is our busiest season.  All birds, fish, and mammals are out and about. Close behind them are scientists studying their habits, anglers trying to catch a couple of fish, and lone adventurers with cameras in hand. 

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  • Fall

    Brown Bear (3)

    A telltale sign of fall are bears loading up on fish, preparing for a long winter's sleep. Frost shifts leaf colors and turns the tundra radiant.

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  • Winter


    The frozen landscape may seem forbidding, but wildlife continues to thrive. Wolves track game in the snow. Ptarmigan and snowshoe hare blend into the background. Our biologists fly afield to continue their research.

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