Rocky Mountain National Park has not only stunning vistas and nearly unending hiking trails, but it is also home to a wide variety of wildlife from majestic elk to the iconic bighorn sheep. Over sixty species of mammals, eleven species of fish, hundreds of species of birds, over three hundred different types of insects, and a number of reptiles and amphibians inhabit the park. While we may visit Rocky Mountain National Park, it is important to remember that these animals live here. We are entering their home. Thanks to park protection, they are able to live with little disturbance from humankind.
A typical visitor to Rocky may only see a tiny fraction of the life that thrives within its borders. Mountain lions, bears, bobcats, pine martins, and many of the park’s other occupants are rarely seen by people, but that doesn't mean they haven't seen you. The forests, marshlands, and tundra all teem with life—from the microscopic to the mighty.
Our national parks are not zoos or museums, but places of refuge for many animals. These areas once covered vast portions of our nation. In one sense they are reminders of what has been lost, but in other ways they are places of hope, preserving the diversity of life for tomorrow's restoration. Within the scope of this website there is simply not enough space to look in-depth at the many inhabitants of the park, but let's take a closer look at a few of its more popular residents.