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Grand Teton Wildlife

At Grand Teton, kids will see a variety of wildlife, some quite large (you can't miss a herd of bison), others shy and small, such as the endearing pika. Watch Travel for Kids video "Grand Teton Dinnertime," to see bison, moose and pronghorn at dusk, munching away on grasses, willows and sagebrush. The birds are also getting dinner - they eat the insects in the bison's fur.
Below you'll find photos and animals we spotted on our last trip to Grand Teton in summer.
Grand Teton Wildlife Photo Album

Pronghorn Everyone has a favorite animal, and the pronghorn is ours. They look like an antelope, with spiffy horns (both males and females), and beautiful white and tan markings. They are the fastest animals in North America, and it's delightful to see the pronghorn bounding over the sage flats.

Pika Pika (also called rock rabbit) have rounded ears, no tail and are found at high elevations in rock-filled areas. They are amazingly adapted to snow and cold, gathering grasses and twigs, and storing them for food during the winter months. We saw several pika on the trail in Cascade Canyon, but they are shy, and quickly run for shelter in the boulders.

Marmot Marmots always remind us a of a furry slipper and are often happy to come up check out what you're eating for lunch (don't feed them). We saw marmots in Cascade Canyon among the rocks, and near the National Museum of Wildlife Art (where there's a sign "Marmot Crossing").

Bison Bison easily weigh a ton, and spend hours each day eating grasses (they eat only plants). We saw a whole herd of bison on Antelope Flats Rd. around 7pm in the summer. Slowly chewing away, bison don't look very speedy, but they move fast when they choose. Part of the herd decided to cross the road, and they ran very fast (bison can go up to 35 mph).

Moose Typically moose are most visible in early morning or late evening, but when we hiked Cascade Canyon, here was a moose with velvety antlers, munching away on the bushes next to Cascade Creek. Gros Ventre Rd. is also a place to see moose (just look for the spot in the road where all the cars are parked.)

Golden mantled ground squirrel You're sure to see these squirrels at Inspiration Point. And how to tell a golden mantled ground squirrel from a chipmunk? The chipmunk has stripes on both back and cheeks; the golden mantled ground squirrel has stripes only the back.

Pine marten On our Phelps Lake hike, we caught a glimpse of a pine marten disappearing into the forest bushes. Coming back down the trail from the lake, we spotted a pine marten nibbling on red berries. A shy, speedy creature, as soon as we showed up, the marten took off through the trees.
Beavers No photos of beavers this trip, but we saw lots lots of beaver dams and ponds. It's hard to spot beavers during the daytime, as they're hard at work from dusk to dawn. Check out beaver ponds at Heron Pond or Schwabacher Landing, and if you're lucky, you might see a beaver too.

American white pelican We stopped at Oxbow Bend for a picnic, and there were there white pelicans bobbing on the water. Watching a single pelican land in the water, glide down the river, and then take off into the air was magical.

Birds Schwabacher Landing is bird central. Just sitting there eating our picnic lunch, many different birds were flying in and out of a dead tree trunk. The Yellow Warbler really caught our eye.
Butterflies With so many lovely wildflowers in summer, the butterflies have a great time drinking the nectar in the flowers. On both the Phelps Lake Trail and in Cascade Canyon, if you just stand still by a clump of flowers, look for butterflies flying around.
Tips: Be sure to bring binoculars for wildlife spotting. Don't feed the animals, and keep your distance from big animals such as bison and moose.
grand teton guidebooks wildlife
     
 

This is our favorite field guide for Grand Teton - it includes mammals (bison, elk, pronghorn), birds, fish, reptiles, insects, plants, tracks & scat. Illustrations for each entry, and clearly organized. (Guidebook)

 

     
Watching Yellowstone & Grand Teton Wildlife
Todd Wilkinson, Michael H. Francis

We had a general idea where to find different animals, but this guidebook is very helpful. Each entry has a big photo, detailed information about the animal, and specifically where to locate bison, moose, pronghorn, white pelicans, bald eagles, mule deer, pika, pine marten, and more. (Guidebook)

 

 
watching yellowstone grand teton wildlife
     
grand teton national park wildlife  
Grand Teton National Park Wildlife
Jamese Kavanaugh, Raymond Leung

Looking for something small and light to tuck into a daypack? Here's a folding laminated pocket guide with mammals, reptiles birds, butterflies, wildflowers, trees and plants. (Guide)

 

More children's books on other Wyoming pages
 

 

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