Wildlife

dragonfly 512x219

Wildlife on the Refuge ranges from aquatic to terrestrial, resident to migratory, warm blooded to cold blooded, and 1000 lbs to less than an ounce.  With a wide range of habitat, the refuge attracts a large variety of life in the high desert plains of southwest Wyoming.

  • Trumpeter Swan

    trumpeter swans 150x118

    Reintroduced to the refuge in 1993, the refuge trumpeter swan population has expanded and flourished.  The refuge in 2012 hosted 6 pairs of nesting trumpeter swans that produced a total of 18 cygnets (nearly 50% of Wyoming's total cygnets produced in 2012) and over 200 wintering swans in February 2013.

    Learn More
  • Bald and Golden Eagles

    bald eagle wading - 150x118

    Large birds of prey, bald and golden eagles are a fairly common sight on the refuge.  Golden eagles can usually be found on the main entrance road, near Hwy 372 or on a nesting platform near the Hay Farm boat ramp or on the southern end of the refuge just north of the County Road 4 bridge.  Current bald eagle numbers are between five and seven nesting pairs right along the Green River.

    Learn More
  • Moose

    bull moose - greg wilson - 150x118

    The shiras moose, smallest of all the moose subspecies, is a fairly common sight during the spring, summer, and fall on the refuge.  A solitary animal, moose usually are seen alone or with young in the riparian area or wetlands along the Green River.  Coat dark brown to black; large overhanging snout; pendant "bell" under throat; antlers massive and flat; tail short; bulls (largest antlered animals in the world) weigh 800 to 1,200 lbs. cows 600 to 800 lbs. Usually solitary but may congregate during rut or on excellent winter range; at home in water, may submerge for 3 to 4 minutes, or swim for miles; cows very protective of calves.    

  • Pronghorn Antelope

    antelope 150x118

    A frequently seen resident of Seedskadee, the locally known "antelope" are usually seen in the refuge's uplands/ sagebrush steppe.  With a coat rich russet-tan with white underside; large white rump patch; two white bands across throat; black markings on head; eyes large, dark; dew claws absent; horns of adult bucks 13 to 16 inches long with prongs and curved tips; horn sheaths shed annually; about 70% of adult does have horns (averaging 1 1/2 inches long); adult bucks weigh 125 lbs., does 110 lbs. Adult bucks territorial from March through September; does and fawns in small herds drift on and off buck's territories in spring and summer; herds of bachelor bucks excluded from territories; all ages and both sexes congregate in winter herds; during severe winters, herds drift for long distances seeking food; barriers to such movements limit populations; excited animals emit explosive snorts, erect white rump patches, and emit musky odor from glands in rump patches. Upperparts are reddish brown to tan; underparts, lower sides, rump, and two bands on the neck are white; neck has a short black mane; male has a black band along each side of the snout, a black patch on each cheek, and sometimes black bands on the neck; males and most females have horns (larger and usually forked in males; sheaths are shed annually); two toes on each hoofed foot; head and body length 100 to 150 cm, tail 8 to 18 cm, mass 36 to 70 kg (Nowak 1991). (Description taken from fieldguide.mt.gov)

  • Mule and White-tailed Deer

    Mule deer bucks 150x118

    Mule Deer: Coat gray in winter, brownish in summer; forehead and brisket dark; chin, throat, and rump patch white. Tail short and round with black tip. Ears large (reason for name). Antlers fork and fork again; typical adult buck has four tines on each side (or five if brow tines are present); forward-tipping brow tines are shorter than those of White-tailed Deer or may be absent. Outside of hind foot has a slit-like scent gland up to seven inches long. Mature bucks weigh 250 to 275 lbs. on good range, does 160 to 180. More gregarious and migratory (mostly elevational movements) than White-tailed Deer. Feed early and late in the day. Run with tail down in bounding leaps, keeping all feet together.

    White-tailed Deer: Coat grayish-brown in winter, reddish-brown in summer; underside of foot-long tail white; antlers consist of main beams, generally with three to five tines projecting upward; brow tines long; outside of lower hind foot has a small, teardrop-shaped scent gland; mature bucks weigh 250 to 275 lbs. on good range, does 160 to 180. Occupy small home ranges, do not migrate far; mostly nocturnal and secretive; solitary much of the time but form small groups in favored feeding areas; when alarmed or running, erect and wag their tails, causing white underside to flash. (Descriptions taken from fieldguide.mt.gov)

  • Elk

    Elk in winter, south of Hwy 28 - 150x118

    At Seedskadee, elk are usually only seen south of Highway 28 on the east side of the Green River and on Big Island.  Elk are much larger than deer, bulls can weigh more than 1,000 lbs. before the rut but seldom exceed 900 lbs. during the late fall; cows weigh 500 to 600 lbs. Strong herding instinct; old cows usually lead summer herds of cows, calves, and yearling (spike) bulls.  Elk usually summer at higher elevations and move down to grass and/or shrub winter ranges (with nearby trees for thermal cover); habitat use strongly influenced by human activities.  (Descriptions taken from fieldguide.mt.gov)

  • Trout

    Rainbow trout in Green River - 150x118

    The Green River is filled with a variety of fish, the most sought-after being the trout species rainbow, brown, bonneville and Snake River cutthroat.  Among the local anglers, Kokanee salmon are a popular fish as well.  

  • River Otter

    River Otter, Linda Bucklin - 150x118

    Northern river otter are often spotted on the refuge, but very elusive creatures.  The Hawley wetland, just downstream of the Hay Farm boat ramp, and the outlet of the Cottonwood Wetland Unit south of Hwy 28 offer the best chances for an otter sighting.

  • Sage Grouse

    Sage grouse hen at headquarters - 150x118

    Greater sage-grouse mate and nest near the refuge.  The birds are most often seen from late spring to late fall on the refuge, especially in the early mornings or late evenings.  

  • Neotropical Migrant Birds

    Seedskadee National Wildlife Refuge and the Green River drainage are an important migration route for Neotropical migrant species.  The arid sagebrush steppe which surrounds the river is less than hospitable for many species that require insects and green vegetation to fuel their lengthy migration.  The river acts like a superhighway with well stocked rest stops for numerous migrational bird species, for example: night hawks, warblers, waterfowl, shorebirds, and hummingbirds to name a few.

  • Sagebrush Obligate Birds

    Description and photo coming soon.

  • Aquatic Invertebrates

    Description and photo coming soon.

  • Other Fish Species

    Description and photo coming soon.