Seasons of Wildlife
Spring is a perfect time to go on a hike and look for wildflowers.
Summer is a great time to take a canoeing adventure through the wetland. As you paddle through the swamp, you will see bald cypress and water tupelo trees. These ancient giants that have stood here for centuries. Summer is also a great time to go birdwatching. Visitors may see songbirds and warblers on the refuge, including prothonotary, yellow-throated, hooded and prairie warblers just to name a few.
Fall is a great time to look for white-tailed deer on the refuge. Large numbers can often be seen in the evening feeding in the farm fields. Other resident wildlife that visitors may see during fall season include squirrels, foxes, mink, bobcats and river otters.
Winter is a great time for spotting waterfowl. Mallard ducks, Canada geese and green-winged teal are a few species you may see.
Cypress Creek National Wildlife Refuge provides habitat for Indiana bats, an endangered species. Indiana bats hibernate during the winter in caves or, occasionally, in abandoned mines. For hibernation, they require cool, humid caves with stable temperatures, less than 50° F but above freezing. Very few caves within the range of the species have these conditions. After hibernation, Indiana bats migrate to their summer habitat in wooded areas where they usually roost under loose tree bark on dead or dying trees. During the summer, males roost alone or in small groups, while females roost in maternity colonies of up to 100 bats or more. Indiana bats forage in or along the edges of forested areas. Refuge staff have documented three maternity colonies of Indiana bats on the refuge.
Prothonotary warblers are migratory birds that nest in tree cavities over water and can be seen and heard throughout the flooded forests of the refuge. Prothonotary warblers are a good indicator of healthy bottomland forests and the success of restoration efforts on the refuge and the surrounding Cache River wetlands.
Like the swamps of the south, the swamps of Cypress Creek National Wildlife Refuge and the surrounding wetlands are rife with bald-cypress and water tupelo trees, ancient giants that have stood here for centuries. One of the best ways to view the swamps is by canoe. Navigate through Eagle Pond where you will view 800-year-old bald cypress trees, including one with more than 200 knees!