Photograph of Colorado Mountain Range
Mesa Autumn Wild Horses oil_rig_OG Boaters Photograph of Ruin
BLM>Colorado>Programs>Recreation>Recreation Activities>Wildlife Viewing
Print Page
Recreation Activities

Wildlife Viewing

Sage grouseThere are opportunities for wildlife viewing throughout Colorado's public lands. A wide array of species can be found on a variety of landscapes. These include elk, deer, bighorn sheep, mountain lions, bears, wild horses, sage-grouse, waterfowl, badgers, collared lizards and much more. Please respect and preserve wildlife by observing from a distance, refraining from harassing or feeding animals, and avoiding wildlife during sensitive times, such as mating, nesting, raising young or wintertime.

You can find more information about wildlife viewing at Colorado Parks and Wildlife.

 Featured Recreation Areas



Flock of pelicans with mountainous background

Blanca Wetlands Recreation Area

A variety of waterfowl are attracted to the hundreds of ponds, marshes and playas within Blanca Wetlands Recreation Area. Visitors can enjoy bird watching from a waterfowl-viewing boardwalk.

Rugged cliff face

Deep Creek Recreation Area

The trail following Deep Creek offers exciting wildlife viewing experiences. Deep Creek Recreation Area is habitat to mammals like deer, elk, bighorn sheep, mountain lions, bobcats and black bears. Raptors include bald eagles and peregrince falcons, and the creek is home to various trout species.

Dolores River

Dolores River Recreation Area

Extending through a stunning red river canyon, Dolores River Recreation Area features rugged cliffs where bighorn sheep can be spotted. In addition, the river itself provides habitat for river otters and various species of trout.

Scenic red mesas

Dominguez-Escalante National Conservation Area

Desert bighorn sheep can be seen bounding from boulder to boulder throughout the canyons of Dominguez-Escalante National Conservation Area. Birds, mammals and reptiles can be found amongst the riparian habitats surrounding Little Dominguez Creek and throughout the entire region.

Emerald Mountain

Emerald Mountain Recreation Area

Lushly vegetated landscapes provide opportunities for wildlife viewing at Emerald Mountain Recreation Area. A variety of animals can be found amongst the cottonwoods and along beautiful springs.

Gunnison River

Gunnison Gorge National Conservation Area

Roaming through Gunnison Gorge National Conservation Area are large numbers of Rocky Mountain bighorn sheep. This area is also home to the sage-grouse. Other wildlife include elk, deer, mountain lions, ringtail cats, coyotes, river otters and chukars.

Yampa River

Little Yampa Canyon Recreation Area

Little Yampa Canyon Recreation Area is home to a variety of wildlife. The Yampa River features many bass, pike and trout species; various raptors inhabit the riparian areas. Mammals include elk, mule deer, pronghorn antelope, and occasional badgers, coyotes, foxes and marmots.

Red-rock river canyon

McInnis Canyons National Conservation Area

A wide array of wildlife species inhabit McInnis Canyons National Conservation Area. Mountain lions and bighorn sheep roam through Black Ridge Canyons Wilderness, and boaters drifting down Ruby-Horsethief River Corridor may spot eagles nesting up inside the cottonwoods.

Whitewater rafting on the Colorado River

Upper Colorado River

Riparian habitats, scenic canyons and ranching landscapes support a diversity of wildlife along the Upper Colorado River. These beautiful areas provide outstanding wildlife viewing and bird watching opportunities.