Digital Critter Challenge Checklist

chipmunk on a log

NPS photo, Shannon Welch


All contest entries in this digital art category must be created on a computer and MUST be inspired by a wildlife species from this checklist. If a background is included in the piece, it should represent the creature’s natural habitat (local forest, field, or river). The animal should be the focal point of the art, though plants from the same habitat may be included in the piece. It is inappropriate for contest entries to include humans interacting with or handling animals. Creatures should not be depicted in a classic human setting such as on a road, in a house or car, on a porch, or at a picnic table or tent. Please remember that a contest goal is to teach people about the region's diverse natural ecology and the wildlife that lives here through art.

This list highlights 52 wildlife species of the New River Gorge. Some live here year-round, some take up residence here only during certain seasons of the year, while others pass through in route to other seasonal homes. This species list is a small sample of the over 38 reptiles, 48 amphibians, 65 mammals, 90 fish, 250 birds, and hundreds of insect species that walk on the land, swim in the waters, and fly in the air in this area of the central Appalachian Mountains.

Twenty pieces of digital art in this category will be selected for this year's contest exhibit, five works from each grade group.



  • American beaver Castor canadensis
  • Black bear Ursus americanus
  • Eastern cottontail (rabbit) Sylvilagus floridanus
  • Eastern chipmunk Tamias striatus
  • North American river otter Lutra canadensis
  • Virginia opossum Dedelphis virginiana
  • Red Fox Vulpes vulpes
  • Striped skunk Mephitis mephitis
  • White-footed mouse Peromyscus leucopus
  • White-tailed deer Odocoileus virginianus


  • American crow Corvus brachyrhynchos
  • Bald eagle Haliaeetus leucocephalus
  • Belted kingfisher Megaceryle alcyon
  • Carolina wren Thryothorus ludovicianus
  • Eastern bluebird Sialia sialis
  • Eastern screech-owl Megascops asio
  • Great blue heron Ardea herodias
  • Hooded warbler Setophaga citrina
  • Northern cardinal Cardinalis cardinalis
  • Ovenbird Seiurus aurocapilla
  • Peregrine falcon Falco peregrinus
  • Pileated woodpecker Dryocopus pileatus
  • Ruby-throated hummingbird Archiloshus colubris

Amphibians and Reptiles

  • Eastern American toad Anaxyrus americanus
  • Eastern box turtle Terrapene carolina
  • Eastern milk snake Lampropeltis triangulum
  • Five-lined skink Plestiodon fasciatus
  • Northern copperhead Agkistrodon contortrix mokasen
  • Northern leopard frog Lithobates pipiens
  • Northern red salamander Pseudotriton ruber
  • Red-spotted newt Notophthalmus viridescens
  • Spring peeper Pseudacris crucifer
  • Wood frog Lithobates sylvaticus

Insects and Spiders

  • Black-and-gold bumble bee Bombus auricomus
  • Common buckeye (butterfly) Jumonia coenia
  • Common water strider Gerris lacustris
  • Common whitetail (dragonfly) Plathemis lydia
  • Eastern comma (butterfly) Polygonia comma
  • Eastern tiger swallowtail Papilio glaucus
  • Giant mayfly Hexagenia limbata
  • Golden jumping spider Paraphidippus aurantius
  • Large milkweed bug Oncopeltus fasciatus
  • Marbled orbweaver (spider) Araneus marmoreus
  • Monarch butterfly Danaus plexippus
  • Northern crab spider Mexaphesa asperata
  • Red admiral (butterfly) Vanessa atalanta

Fish and Crayfish

  • Bluegill Lepomis macrochirus
  • Brook trout Salvelinus fontinalis
  • Candy darter Etheostoma osburni
  • Common crayfish Cambarus bartonii
  • Flathead Catfish Pylodictis olivaris
  • Smallmouth bass Micropterus dolomieu

Last updated: December 13, 2023

Park footer

Contact Info

Mailing Address:

P.O. Box 246, 104 Main Street
Glen Jean, WV 25846



Contact Us