Animals

Two juvenile barred owls play together on a branch
Barred owls (Strix varia) are the most common owl in Acadia - look up into the canopy at dawn or dusk for your best chance to glimpse them.

Ashley L. Conti / Friends of Acadia

Acadia may be famous for its sunrises, sweeping coastal vistas, pink granite mountains, and diverse forests, it’s also home to a plethora of wildlife species. Ranging from the smallest microorganisms living in tide pools to the occasional moose and even to humpback whales, there’s plenty to see for everybody.


What kinds of wildlife can I see?

Use the pages in the grid below to learn more about the different types of animals present in the park. We have around 40 species of mammals, all the way from bats to black bears, more than 330 species of birds, around 30 species of fish, 7 reptiles, and 11 amphibians. Invertebrates live in the air, on and under the ground, and in the intertidal zone, and aren't as well documented, so we're not sure just how many species live here. Check out our species list to see detailed information from NPSpecies about each taxa of wildlife.

 

Where can I see wildlife?

Animals of all kinds can be seen throughout the park, but different habitats support different species. To see songbirds, try diverse forested areas like Sieur de Monts Spring or the Wonderland Trail. See shorebirds along Ocean Drive, at Seawall, or at Schoodic Point. Check the skies along the shores of Acadia’s ponds or ocean to look for bald eagles, and look up from The Precipice parking lot to spot peregrine falcons defending the cliff. Look for otters and mink at the Tarn, or check out Great Meadow in the morning or evening to see white-tailed deer. Moose and bear are present on the Schoodic Peninsula, but are only infrequent visitors to Mount Desert Island. Other, more elusive species like bobcats and fishers live in the park, but are rarely seen. In general, learn the habitats and habits of the critters you’re looking for before you try to find them.

For a more hands-on experience, try heading over to College of the Atlantic’s Dorr Museum of Natural History, named after Acadia’s founder, George B. Dorr, and containing exhibits of Acadia’s fauna. Ranger-led touch tank programs introduce kids and adults alike to the wonders of the intertidal zone. Other ranger-led programs include Acadia's Birds or In Search of Beavers, where you'll get a chance to see and learn about some of the wildlife present in the park.

 
A red fox carries a snowshoe hare in its mouth

Mammals

Foxes, deer, and beavers, oh my!

A bald eagle flying

Birds

Acadia's most famous creatures, with more than 300 species reported!

A green frog perches on a lily pad

Amphibians and Reptiles

Frogs, snakes, turtles, and salamanders

a dragonfly perches on a rock

Insects

Dragonflies, bees, butterflies, moths, dreaded mosquitos and black flies, and more!

Mussels and barnacles in a tide pool

Marine Invertebrates

Creatures without a backbone that live mainly in the tide pools of Acadia's rocky shoreline.

Alewives swim upstream.

Fish

Inhabitants of Acadia's lakes, ponds, and streams.

A photographer sits on a rock

Viewing Wildlife

When it comes to wildlife, the best relationship is a long-distance relationship.

 
 

Wildlife Stories

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    Last updated: August 16, 2019

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    Bar Harbor, ME 04609

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