Seasons of Wildlife


The woods swarm with songbirds of every color.  Scarlet tanagers, ruby-crowned kinglets, yellow warblers, goldfinches, green herons, blue jays, red-headed woodpeckers, and indigo buntings paint the woods with their vivid colors.  Broods of wood ducks can be seen feeding on insects along the shore.


As the days get longer and hotter, many of our cold blooded species are more active and easily viewed.  A variety of snakes and turtles can be spotted basking in the sun.  Frogs can also be heard for miles this time of year.  A few frogs you may recognize would be the bullfrog, which has a low baritone jug-a-rum, cricket frogs, which sound like two marbles clicking together, and chrous frogs, which sound like your thumb running along the edge of a comb.  


Waterfowl start arriving at the refuge.  The squirrels, beavers, and variety of other mammals are almost finished preparing for the cold winter.  While some animals may be getting ready to hide out for the winter, other can be spotted easily as the leaves start to fall from the tree.


Mallards, black ducks, blue-wing teal, and other waterfowl are attracted to the Refuge's extensive feeding and resting areas.  Thousands of ducks and geese call Hatchie National Wildlife Refuge their temporary home for the winter season.  Bald eagles are common winter visitors around Oneal Lake while ospreys are rare visitors to the Refuge during the winter months.