As the least populated state in the country, Wyoming is a haven of wide-open and unpopulated spaces. You could drive for hundreds of miles and see nothing but wildlife roaming the mountains and plains. Wyoming wildlife is as diverse as the landscapes, with over 100 mammal species and 400 species of birds. Our wild residents include bison, moose, grizzly bears, elk, mule deer, wolves, and pronghorn antelope.
One of the best destinations for wildlife watching can be found at our member ranches at Wyoming Dude Rancher’s Association. Our ranches offer authentic Western adventures like horseback riding, hiking, fly fishing, and National Park trips. As you are participating in activities at the ranch, keep an eye out for some of these local animals:
These herbivores are among the most frequent animal sightings in Wyoming. You will most likely hear elk before seeing them since they use various vocalizations to communicate. Yellowstone and Grand Teton National Park are vital migration areas for elk herds.
Moose are the largest members of the deer family and can weigh up to 1,000 pounds while standing over 7 feet tall! Moose are most heavily concentrated in Jackson Hole and Yellowstone, where there are plenty of marshy areas to feast on aquatic plants.
Wyoming is home to both black bears and grizzly bears. Contrary to popular belief, black bears are not always black and can often be red, cinnamon, brown, and blond. Black bears are far more abundant in Wyoming and can be found across the state, from dense forests to mountain habitats.
Bison are the largest land mammal in North America and the official state mammal of Wyoming. These herbivores are concentrated in the Grand Teton and Yellowstone regions, the only place these mammals have existed since prehistoric times. Since the 1800s, bison have come back from the brink of extinction, and there are thousands of these mammals roaming the state today.
Mule deer are found throughout the western US, but there are prominent populations in the Yellowstone and Jackson Hole areas. They are commonly found in brushy areas, forests, and grasslands since they primarily eat grasses and shrubs. They are named after their oversized ears that resemble a mule, which helps them detect predators.
Pronghorns are the fastest land animal in North America, reaching speeds of 60 miles per hour. They are also known for having incredible vision and detecting movement up to four miles away! They prefer open grasslands and primarily eat grasses and sagebrush.
Discover Wyoming Wildlife at a Dude Ranch
These are just a few Wyoming wildlife species you can see during your ranch vacation; find the complete wildlife guide here. Browse our member ranches at Wyoming Dude Ranchers Association and find the perfect western adventure for you! Learn how you can travel responsibly to our ranches by helping us protect the land and animals that make Wyoming so special. If you have any questions about ranching with us, please don’t hesitate to contact us at 888-996-9372.