• dogwood across creek

    Prince William Forest

    Park Virginia

Animals

The park provides a needed refuge for wildlife populations in the area. The park covers two physiographic provinces and lies in a transition zone between northern and southern climates, resulting in diverse habitats that can support healthy breeding populations of numerous animal species. Current inventory data includes 38 species of mammals, 24 species of amphibians, 27 species of reptiles, 100+ species of birds, 23 species of fish, and an unknown number of invertebrates. Several studies have uncovered a few state rare or threatened species, as well as species of special concern. Threats to wildlife in the park include poaching, development, and direct habitat loss and alteration.

 

Amphibians
Simply put - amphibians are born in water and grow to breathe air. Frogs, toads, salamanders, newts and other colorful noisemakers fall into this class of animals. In Greek, Amphibios means both kinds of life - amphi, meaning both, and bios, meaning life. Today, Amphibians are known as 'ecological indicators' or the 'canary in the coal mine' of the animal kingdom. Their decline in population over recent years is a bellweather for the stress on our environment.

 
a woodpecker holds on

Paula Sullivan

Birds
Prince William Forest Park was designated an Audubon Important Birding Area in 2009 and is known as one of the best birding habitats in northern Virgnia. Every year, the public helps participate in the Christmas Backyard Bird Count and shares their exciting sightings with park staff. Learn more about the flights of fancy that you can find here!

Mammals
Our closest cousins in the animal kingdom, the characteristics of mammals sound so familiar. They have hair, three inner-ear bones, are born live (not in eggs), and nurse from their mothers. From the smallest bat to the great blue whale, mammals are amazing. Check out those mammals that you might find on your next hike here in Prince Wiliam Forest Park.

 

Reptiles
They slink, they slither, and invoke love in some, and fear in most. Reptiles include snakes, turtles, crocodiles, alligators, and lizards. They are covered in scales, bear young in eggs (except some vipers which give live birth), and breathe air.

 
striders150

Invertebrates
They may have no backbone, but invertebrates ARE the backbone of the natural world! Birds, snakes, amphibians and other animal species feed on invetebrates. They also pollinate our flowers and food plants and wow us with the beautiful color displays of moths, butterflies, and dragonflies.

Did You Know?