You can learn more about these animals and more at the Big Trees State Park Visitor Center. The Visitor Center is open daily April through November with varying hours. Call or check their website for times: (209) 795–3840 or www.bigtrees.org.
Black Bears – are extremely adaptable and show a great variation in habitat types, though they are primarily found in forested areas with thick ground vegetation and an abundance of fruits, nuts, and vegetation. Most black bears hibernate depending on local weather conditions and availability of food during the winter months. In regions where there is a consistent food supply and warmer weather throughout the winter, bears may not hibernate at all or do so for a very brief time. Females give birth and usually remain denned throughout the winter, but males and females without young may leave their dens from time to time during winter months.
- Size: Males are much larger than females and can weigh up to 500 pounds, although average weight Is about 300 pounds.
- Color: They range in color from blonde to black, with cinnamon brown being the most common color.
Red Fox– Historic Range and Population Densities throughout high elevations of the Sierra Nevada from Tulare County northward to Sierra County, and from Mount Shasta and Lassen Peak westward to the Trinity Mountains (Trinity County). But now seen in Big Trees Village in Dorrington, elevation 5,000.
There has been several sighting in BTV. “My neighbors just saw one in my yard crossing the road on Yuroc Drive and one of our agents sons saw one on Shoshone.”
- Tail tip: WHITE Tail length:
- LONG (nearly body length),
- Back of ear: BLACK,
- Body color varies
Bob Cat-The Bobcat is a medium sized cat with a ruff of fur around the sides of the face. The bobcats in the North tend to be larger than those in the south. Their coat color varies and has been recorded in shades of light gray, yellowish-brown, buff-brown, and reddish-brown. They are always spotted to some extent, with some patterned only on the undersides, and others having spots on the sides and chest backs too. The southern Bobcats seem to have a more spotted coat, with the spots being much smaller than the northern cats.
- Weight: between 13-30 pounds,
- Height: 21 inches high and are 30-50 inches long.
“Our property backs up the Big Tees State Park I was privileged to see the cutest Bob Cat in our back yard. Her tummy was as round as a basketball either she had just eaten something very large or she was pregnant and just about ready to give birth.”
Mountain Lion-Mountain lions are not threatened nor endangered in California. In fact, the lion population is relatively high in California and their numbers appear to be stable. Mountain lions are legally classified as “specially protected species”. This has nothing to do with their relative abundance and does not imply that they are rare. https://www.wildlife.ca.gov/Conservation/Mammals/Mountain-https://www.wildlife.ca.gov/Conservation/Mammals/Mountain-Lion/FAQ#359951240-are-mountains-lions-listed-as-a-threat
- Height: 2-2.3 feet at shoulders.
- Length: 3.5-5.5 feet (2-2.5-foot tail length).
- Weight: 110-180 lbs for males; females weigh slightly less.
- Lifespan: About 12 years in the wild; up to 25 years in captivity.
Coyotes- The coyote has grayish-brown to yellowish-brown fur on top and whitish fur on its under parts. It has large triangular ears on the top of its head and a long, narrow muzzle. It has a black nose; yellow eyes; and a long, bushy tail. One way to tell the coyote apart from wolves and dogs is to watch its tail when it runs. They eat small game such as rodents, rabbits, fish and frogs, and larger game like deer. When they aren’t snacking on bigger prey, they will eat snakes, insects, fruit and grass. Coyotes are known for being pests because they will kill livestock and pets.In cities, coyotes will eat pet food or garbage.
- Height: 1.9 – 2.2 ft. (Adult, At Shoulder)
- Mass: 15 – 46 lbs (Adult)
- Length: 2.5 – 2.8 ft. (Adult, Without Tail)
- Tracks: 2 1/4” to 2 3/4” long, and about 1 3/4” to 2 3/8” wide.
Coywolf – Do you think we might have these here? Hybrids, they tend to be larger than coyotes, and show behaviors between coyotes and the other parent’s species. Recent research suggests that the coywolf may be genetically related to western coyotes and eastern wolves. Food habits: small to medium sized mammals such as mice/voles, rabbits, and woodchucks, all the way to deer including fawns of the year and adults (mostly in late winter/early spring). Their thick coats, long legs and bushy tails often give them a wolf-like appearance that causes them to be mistaken for much larger animals.
- Mass: 30-55 pounds, average 32-40 pounds
- Length: 4-5 feet long from nose to tail tip
- Tracks: (heel to claw tip): 3 – 3.5 inches (occasionally 3.75 inches)