Despite the small size, Maine has a population of wild animals that includes rodents and other mammals, as well as marine species like fish, with many species also found in neighboring Canada. There are no less than 58 native mammal species and 202 bird species, at least 34 reptile and amphibian species, and over 16,000 invertebrate species, many of which are relatively rare.
The Official Animal of Maine
Being the popular hotspot for wildlife that it is, Maine boasts six state animals from different animal categories:
Official state animal of Maine: Moose
The moose (Alces alces) population of Maine is the largest in the eastern United States, and moose are relatively rare in most parts of the continental United States. These mammals are the largest of the deer species. Moose stands about six feet tall, has brown coats and a set of flat, broad antlers. The moose population in Maine is an ICN Least Concern group as a common species.
Official state bird of Maine: Chickadee
Maine’s official bird, the chickadee (Parus atricapillus) is one of the state’s most popular feeder birds. This bird species is easy to find at feeding because of the distinctive song that its name comes from. One of the things that makes this bird stand out is the combination of black and white markings. The species is also regarded as having a friendly personality.
Official state cat of Maine: Maine Coon
The Maine Coon cat (Felis catus) is the state’s official cat, a breed descended from cats owned by early Maine seafarers. This cat has a thick coat that helps it to withstand Maine’s rough winters. Maine Coons are a very large cat breed, often weighing as much as 18 pounds. Another unique trait that this cat has is the strange chirping noise that it makes to get attention.
Official state crustacean of Maine: Lobster
One of the most iconic native animals in Maine is the American lobster (Homarus americanus). Most of these lobsters have brownish-green shells, which serve as a type of camouflage. Lobster fishing accounts for much of Maine’s economy.
Where To Find The Top Wild Animals in Maine
Tours are some of the best ways to see local wildlife, including what are usually nocturnal animals. Whale-watching and other marine-based tours may allow you to see basking sharks, the Atlantic puffin, harbor porpoises, humpback, and pilot whales.
If you spend enough time on one of Maine’s beaches, you’re likely to spot a colony of Harbor Seals, drawn to the rocks that dot most of the state’s coastal areas.
Some of the best places for seeing both unusual, strange wildlife and popular species in Maine include:
- The Kennebec Valley
- Rangeley Lake State Park
- Mt. Desert Island
- Machias Seal Island
- Rachel Carson National Wildlife Refuge
Although you have a chance of seeing nocturnal species in these locations as well as diurnal, you will not encounter poisonous species in these locations.
The Most Dangerous Animals In Maine Today
Although the most common species in Maine do not include poisonous animals, there are a few species that people do need to be aware of and use caution around. Understanding what dangerous wildlife you need to be aware of will make your exploration of both common and weird species that much safer.
Predators are abundant in Maine, and the North American Black Bear (Ursus americanus) is no exception. Although these bears are not as likely to attack as their relatives in the western U.S. are, they are relentless about raiding gardens and bird feeders, sometimes leading to strange incidents in their quest.
Maine also has coyotes, and even though coyote attacks on humans are rare, they have a strong bite capable of inflicting serious damage.
Snapping turtles (Chelydridie), although not poisonous, have a strong bite because of their inability to retreat into their shells when threatened. You will also want to be on the watch for porcupines (Erethizon dorsaum), rodents will quills that are thrown when threatened, leading to weird but painful injury.
Endangered Animals In Maine
The endangered animals in Maine include:
- Golden Eagle – A well-known bird of prey
- Redfin Pickereral – A native fish with its numbers substantially depleted
- Katahdin Arctic – A butterfly species impacted by habitat loss
- Black Racer – A snakes which has experienced habitat loss in recent years
Zoos in Maine
Maine has four animal parks for visitors to enjoy. These parks include:
- DEW Haven – A 42-acre farm for over 200 abused, orphaned or sick animals to receive care
- Kisma Preserve – This preserve hosts African and North American species from rainforest and tropical locations
- Maine Wildlife Park – The park is host to nocturnal and diurnal species that include coyotes, white-tail deer, and other native species
- York’s Wild Kingdom – Host to emus, black swans, eagle owls, and alligators
Mainer Animals List
Animals in Maine FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions)
What kind of animals live in Maine?
Maine has 58 species of mammals that include rodents, over 200 bird species, hundreds of types of fish, and thousands of insect species, from commonplace to rare and weird.
What is the most dangerous animal in Maine?
The most dangerous animal in Maine is the North American Black Bear, which has a large range and frequently wanders into inhabited areas in search of food.
What are the predators of Maine?
Predators in Maine, besides Black Bears, also include coyotes.
Do grizzly bears live in Maine?
No, Maine does not have a Grizzly Bear population. The Grizzly Bear is a species that does not live in any of the New England states.