Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore, is a wonderful assortment of habitat types scattered along the shores of Lake Michigan. Wildlife representative of Michigan in times past can be found during a drive, a hike, a camping trip, or a canoe trip around a small inland lake. Mammals such as white-tailed deer, red fox, porcupine, gray and fox squirrels, bats, and raccoons can be seen almost on a daily basis. Birds abound in the forests, open meadows, beaches, and waterways. North and South Manitou Islands are interesting for the wildlife present or absent. The islands have a wealth of birdlife, but there are no skunks, porcupines or red squirrels. There is only one species of mouse, the woodland deer mouse. Snowshoe hares occur on South Manitou Island but not on North Manitou. An assortment of snakes and turtles can be found throughout the Lakeshore and many campers go to sleep to the sound of frogs singing their evening chorus. Freshwater clams and fish abound in the waters. The sight of a swimming otter or beaver, a spawning salmon, or a hunting bald eagle can make the day for anyone walking along a lake or stream shore.
Download the Sleeping Bear Dunes Plants and Animals Checklist.
Did You Know?
The Piping Plover is an endangered species that makes its home on the wide open beaches of Lakes Michigan and Superior. Several nesting pairs have made the shores of Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore their home. Their nesting areas have been marked so they will not be disturbed.