Wildlife

sea lion
Park E-Ventures Article
The Marine Mammal Center, based at Fort Cronkhite, rescued 1,800 animals in 2015—three times the average. Learn about one culprit, domoic acid, and how it’s produced, how seals and sea lions are affected, and why El Niño exacerbates its effects.
Park E-Ventures Article
Media have been buzzing about recent great white shark sightings in the area. But we went to find out the truth about these mysterious (and unfairly maligned) fish, by asking noted biologists such as Parks Conservancy Trustee Dr. John McCosker.
Small butterfly with open, bronze-colored wings, becoming blue towards her abdomen
Park E-Ventures Article
It’s mission blue butterfly season in the Golden Gate National Parks, and you can catch a glimpse of this endangered species at Milagra Ridge. Learn about this diminutive butterfly—and the plant upon which its survival depends.
Hawk watch
Park E-Ventures Article
Bay Area residents are mighty lucky to be surrounded by parklands and encounter wildlife in our own backyards. But, instead of spotting the occasional raptor, what if you could see all sorts of birds of prey? Here’s your rare chance to identify, count, and band raptors in the Marin Headlands.
Mission blue butterfly (Icaricia icariodes missionensis)
Park E-Ventures Article
This winter the Golden Gate National Parks will be planting over a thousand lupines, the host plant of the endangered mission blue butterfly. As we prepare for this restoration work, a Park Stewardship manager reflects on the big lessons he’s learned from this little butterfly.
salamander
Park E-Ventures Article
Learn how populations of the Ensatina split in the Central Valley and discover how this little salamander—the textbook definition of a “ring species”—vividly illustrates how nature frustrates the human compulsion to classify and categorize species.
Downy Woodpecker
Park E-Ventures Article
We often think about members of a species gathered together, such as “a gaggle of geese,” or a “pack of wolves.” But there are also examples of different species coming together, often to hunt or avoid being hunted. Read on to learn about one animal alliance.
bats
Park E-Ventures Article
Have you ever looked up at the twilight sky to see an erratic flutter of wings? Maybe you tried to convince yourself that it was just a sparrow, but chances are what you actually saw was a little brown bat. Although bats carry a loathsome reputation, humans derive a great...
Park E-Ventures Article
Early last month, dog walker Debra Wood came across an extremely rare sight at Calera Creek in Pacifica: coast garter snakes (Thamnophis elegans terrestris) massing near the creek! Read on to learn more about this amazing natural phenomenon.
Mission blue butterfly (Icaricia icariodes missionensis)
Park E-Ventures Article
A bright flash passes by, triggering someone to yell “BLUE!” Team members nimbly make their way through a mosaic of summer lupines at Oakwood Valley. Quickly but carefully, one person follows the butterfly until it lands. “It’s a mission blue, male, resting on a lupine.” Read on to learn more.