Seasons of Wildlife

Wildlife includes many species typically found in bottomland hardwood forests. White-tailed deer and small mammals such as squirrels and raccoons can be seen throughout the refuge. Turkey are often spotted feeding in agricultural fields adjacent to the refuge.

Waterfowl such as mallards, shovelers, pintail, and teal use the refuge as a migratory stop during the winter months. Wood ducks call the refuge woodlands home throughout the year, nesting in both natural cavity trees and wood duck boxes. One of the reasons the refuge was established is to manage and provide habitat for wood ducks.

In addition to mammals and waterfowl, Bayou Cocodrie provides a place for woodstorks, herons and egrets to live. These long-legged waders can be seen stalking small fish and large insects along the water's edge. Ospreys and swallow-tailed kites can occasionally be seen swooping down on prey in open waters and fields.

The refuge also plays a role in providing much needed habitat for declining species of migratory songbirds such as Kentucky, Swainson's, hooded and prothonotary warblers. Three protected species use the refuge from time to time. Bald eagles and peregrine falcons can be observed usually during the winter months perched in high trees.

Because of its large contiguous stand of bottomland hardwood forest, Bayou Cocodrie National Wildlife Refuge serves as a corridor for the Louisiana black bear between Tensas River National Wildlife Refuge and Red River Wildlife Management Area. Bears may be spotted at any time of year.