9 Animals Lincoln National Forest Showed Us While Hiking

Hiking is a great way to get some exercise while also enjoying the great outdoors. And, if you’re lucky, you might even catch a glimpse of some amazing wildlife. Lincoln National Forest is home to a variety of animals, including some that are quite rare. 

In this blog post, we will explore some of the animals that we have been lucky enough to see while hiking in the forest. From deer and elk to eagles and owls, read on to learn more about the wildlife that call Lincoln National Forest home.

Rocky Mountain Elk

Lincoln National Forest is home to many different types of animals, including the Rocky Mountain elk. We were lucky enough to see a few of these majestic creatures while we were hiking through the forest.

The Rocky Mountain elk is the largest member of the deer family in North America. They can weigh up to 1,000 pounds and stand six feet tall at the shoulder. These animals are perfectly adapted to life in the mountains, with large hooves that help them navigate through snow and rough terrain. Their coat is thick and shaggy, providing insulation against the cold weather.

Elk are herbivores, and their diet consists mostly of grasses and other plants. They will also eat bark, leaves, and twigs if necessary. During the winter months, when food is scarce, they will often dig through the snow to find something to eat.

Rocky Mountain elk are social animals, living in herds of up to several hundred individuals. The herds are usually made up of females and their young, with only a few males. The males generally live alone or in small groups until mating season, when they join forces with a herd in order to compete for mates.

During our hike, we came across a small herd of Rocky Mountain elk grazing in a meadow near a stream. They didn’t seem bothered by our presence, and we were able to watch them for several minutes before they moved on. It was an incredible experience to

Mule Deer

Lincoln National Forest is home to a wide variety of animals, including mule deer. We were lucky enough to spot a few while we were hiking through the forest.

Mule deer are a common sight in Lincoln National Forest. They are often seen grazing on the grasses and shrubs that grow in the forest. Mule deer are not afraid of humans, and will often approach hikers in search of food.

Mule deer are an important part of the ecosystem in Lincoln National Forest. They help to keep the vegetation in check by eating plants. Mule deer also provide food for predators such as coyotes and bobcats.

If you’re lucky enough to see a mule deer while you’re hiking in Lincoln National Forest, be sure to enjoy the experience!

Aoudad (Barbary Sheep)

Lincoln National Forest is home to a variety of wildlife, including the aoudad, or Barbary sheep. These sheep are not native to the United States, but were introduced to the Lincoln National Forest in the early 1900s.

Aoudads are large animals, with males weighing up to 350 pounds and females up to 250 pounds. They have long, curved horns and shaggy coats that can be either red or brown in color. Aoudads are very good climbers and can often be seen perched atop rocky outcroppings.

Although they are not native to the area, aoudads have thrived in the Lincoln National Forest. They are an important part of the ecosystem and provide food for predators such as mountain lions and bobcats. If you’re lucky enough to spot an aoudad while hiking in the Lincoln National Forest, be sure to give them plenty of space and admire them from afar.

American Black Bear 

The American black bear is the smallest of the three bears species found in North America, and are predominantly black in color. Black bears can be found across the United States and Canada, with a small population also inhabiting northern Mexico.

Black bears are very adaptable and can be found in a variety of habitats including forests, swamps, and mountains. They are mostly active at night, but can also be seen during the day.

Lincoln National forest is home to a variety of wildlife, and we were lucky enough to see a black bear while we were hiking! The bear was walking along the trail, and stopped to look at us for a few seconds before continuing on its way. It was an amazing experience to see such a magnificent animal in its natural habitat.

In Lincoln National Forest, American black bears are most commonly found in areas with dense vegetation and lots of fruit trees or berry bushes. They typically avoid human contact, but may be seen raiding campsites or garbage cans in search of food. 

If you encounter a black bear while hiking in Lincoln National Forest, be sure to stay calm and make yourself as small as possible. Slowly back away from the bear while making sure not to startle it, as this could provoke an attack.

Wild Turkey

Lincoln National Forest is home to many different animals, including the wild turkey. These magnificent birds are a sight to behold, and they are often seen strutting around in the forest.

The wild turkey is an important part of the ecosystem in Lincoln National Forest. They help to control the population of insects and other small animals. In addition, their droppings provide nutrients that help to fertilize the soil.

If you’re lucky enough to see a wild turkey while you’re hiking in Lincoln National Forest, be sure to take some time to enjoy the experience. Watch them for a while and marvel at their beauty. Just be sure to give them plenty of space, as they can be quite shy around humans.

The wild turkey is a native bird of North America and is the heaviest member of the genus Meleagris. These birds can weigh up to 24 pounds and have a wingspan of up to six feet! The wild turkey is an omnivorous bird and will eat just about anything, including insects, small mammals, fruits, and seeds.

Mexican Spotted Owl

The Mexican Spotted Owl is a medium-sized owl with large, dark eyes. Its head is round and its body is long and slender. It has a light brown body with dark brown spots. The Mexican Spotted Owl lives in the mountains of Mexico and Central America.

The Mexican Spotted Owl is a medium-sized owl with large, rounded head and no ear tufts. It has dark brown eyes and a gray-brown facial disk with white spots. The upperparts are gray-brown with white spots, while the underparts are whitish with heavy brown spotting. The legs and feet are brown. 

This owl ranges in length from 16 to 20 inches and has a wingspan of 36 to 42 inches.The Mexican Spotted Owl is found in the southwestern United States, Mexico, and Central America. In the United States, it occurs in Arizona, Colorado, New Mexico, Oklahoma, Texas, and Utah. It is found in forests at elevations from 4,000 to 10,000 feet.

This owl nests in holes in trees or cliffs. It lays 2 to 5 eggs which hatch after about 28 days. The young owls fledge (leave the nest) at about 50 days of age.

The diet of the Mexican Spotted Owl consists primarily of small mammals such as mice, shrews, and voles. Birds are also occasionally taken as prey items.The Mexican Spotted Owl is listed as a threatened species under the Endangered Species Act due to habitat loss and fragmentation caused by logging activities within its range.

New Mexico Meadow Jumping Mouse

Lincoln National Forest is home to a variety of animals, including the New Mexico meadow jumping mouse. This small rodent is found in meadows and forests throughout the western United States. In Lincoln National Forest, the New Mexico meadow jumping mouse can be found in the vicinity of streams and other bodies of water.

The New Mexico meadow jumping mouse is a small, brown rodent with large hind legs. It gets its name from its habit of leaping up to three feet into the air when startled. The New Mexico meadow jumping mouse is nocturnal and feeds on insects, seeds, and fruits.

This small mammal is an important part of the forest ecosystem. As a consumer of plants and animals, the New Mexico meadow jumping mouse helps to keep populations in check and helps to recycle nutrients back into the soil.

Checkerspot butterfly 

Lincoln National Forest is home to a variety of wildlife, including the checkerspot butterfly. This brightly-colored butterfly is found in many different habitats across the United States, but it is particularly abundant in Lincoln National Forest.

The checkerspot butterfly gets its name from the black and white patterns on its wings. These patterns are unique to each individual butterfly, making it easy to tell one checkerspot apart from another.

This butterfly feeds on a variety of plants, including wildflowers and clover. You’re most likely to see them near open meadows or fields where these plants are common.

If you’re lucky enough to spot a checkerspot butterfly while hiking in Lincoln National Forest, take a moment to appreciate this beautiful creature!

Jackrabbits 

The Lincoln National Forest is home to many different animals, including jackrabbits. These hopping hares are a common sight in the forest and can be seen year-round. Jackrabbits are well-adapted to life in the desert and use their long ears to help regulate their body temperature. In the winter, they grow a thick coat of fur to keep them warm.

While they are generally shy around humans, jackrabbits will come close if you have food. They are mostly herbivorous, but will also eat insects and small mammals. If you’re lucky enough to spot one while hiking in the Lincoln National Forest, take a moment to enjoy the wildlife!

Conclusion

We had a great time hiking through Lincoln National Forest and seeing all the different animals that live there. We were especially excited to see the deer, squirrels, and birds up close. We even saw some snakes and lizards! If you’re ever in the area, we highly recommend taking a hike through Lincoln National Forest — you never know what wildlife you might encounter.

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