Animals

Nature and Science
Northern Elephant Seals

Take time to explore Point Reyes National Seashore, and you will find that wildlife abounds. Animals at Point Reyes National Seashore range from large marine mammals such as the northern elephant seal to the relatively small endangered Myrtle's silverspot butterfly. Because Point Reyes National Seashore is part of the California Floristic Province (characterized by Mediterranean vegetation) and a zone of overlap of marine provinces (Californian and Oregonian), a wide variety of animals are found in the diversity of habitats.

Current inventories document approximately 80 species of mammals, 85 species of fish, 29 species of reptiles and amphibians, and thousands of aquatic and terrestrial invertebrate species. Nearly half the bird species of North America, 490 species, have been spotted here. Over fifty species of animals at Point Reyes are listed by the state or federal government as threatened, rare, or endangered. To help us better protect some of these species, the park uses remote wildlife monitoring cameras to gather information about the presence of species, the numbers of individuals, and their behaviors and habitat selection.

The animal life found at Point Reyes National Seashore is as varied as the landscape. Diverse crustaceans, echinoderms, mollusks, and other invertebrates may be found where water meets the land. Whether you choose to hike the mountains or stroll along the shores, keep your eyes and ears open for a chance to experience nature at its best.

Species Lists

Visit our Animal Species Lists page for lists to download.

Road Kill

Every day wildlife are killed on Marin County roads, including within the National Seashore. Please drive at or below posted speed limits to reduce the chance of colliding with wildlife. If you hit an animal while driving within the National Seashore and there is significant damage to your vehicle, or if you see a recently roadkilled animal that is creating a road hazard on a park roadway, please contact park dispatch at 415-464-5170. You can also help increase researchers' understanding of the extent of roadkill and help develop innovative ideas for reducing roadkill by reporting the roadkill to the California Roadkill Observation System.

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Last updated: June 30, 2020

Contact the Park

Mailing Address:

1 Bear Valley Road
Point Reyes Station, CA 94956

Phone:

415-464-5100
This number will initially be answered by an automated attendant, from which one can opt to access a name directory, listen to recorded information about the park (i.e., directions to the park; visitor center hours of operation; weather forecast; fire danger information; shuttle bus system status; wildlife updates; ranger-led programs; seasonal events; etc.), or speak with a ranger. Please note that if you are calling between 4:30 pm and 10 am, park staff may not be available to answer your call.

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