Animals in Maine

Updated: January 21, 2023
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Despite the small size, Maine has a population of wild animals that includes rodents and other mammals, spiders, 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.

Some of the most well-known animals in Maine include wild turkeys, Canada lynx, garter snakes, mudpuppy salamanders, and endangered or threatened invertebrates like the Monarch Butterfly.

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.

When you do most of your exploring in Maine in woodland or mountain areas, some of the species that you might be able to spot include the white-tail deer, American marten, and flying squirrel.

Some of the best places for seeing both unusual, strange wildlife and popular species in Maine include:

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:

Snakes in Maine

Maine is the only continental state in the U.S. to not have venomous snakes! A total of nine different snakes live in Maine. Most of Maine’s snakes live in the southwest quadrant of the state, but if you’re looking for snakes in the state you may find:

  • Garter snakes
  • Ribbon snakes
  • Brown snakes
  • Northern water snakes
  • Red-bellied snakes
  • Milk snakes
  • Smooth green snakes
  • Ring-necked snakes
  • Northern black racers

Native Plants in Maine

Maine is the quintessential New England state. Step aside, lobster! With many miles of coastline and beautiful countryside, there are plenty of opportunities for plants and flowers to take center stage in this small but magical state. From blueberries and cherries to lupine and mountain laurel, there are stunning native plants in Maine.

Flag of Maine

The flag of Maine consists of the state coat of arms on a navy blue background. The state’s coat of arms features a moose and pine tree emblem on a shield flanked by a farmer and a sailor. Under the coat of arms, there is a light blue ribbon with the state’s name, and above the coat of arms is a small-scale version of the north star and the Latin motto “Dirigo,” meaning “I direct.”

Read about:

Mainer Animals

American Eel

Don't eat raw eel! Their blood is poisonous to humans when consumed raw.

Arctic Char

Arctic char is the northern-most fish; no other fish lives anywhere further north!

Armyworm

They are so named because they "march" in armies of worms from one crop to another in search of food

Bobolink

In spring, the male bobolink is the only North American bird who is dark below and light colored above. This makes identification easy.

Common Yellowthroat

The Common Yellowthroat stays close to the ground and uses stealth to survive!

De Kay’s Brown Snake

They have specialized jaws for removing snails from shells.

Eastern Chipmunk

The name chipmunk is derived from an Ojibwe word that means “one who descends the trees headfirst.”

Flea

Adult fleas can jump up to 7 inches in the air

Fox Squirrel

Although it is a tree squirrel, it spends most of its time on the ground.

Groundhog (Woodchuck)

They whistle to each other to warn of approaching danger!

Hooded Seal

Hooded seal pups are called bluebacks because the color of the fur on their back is blue-gray. This pretty color made people want to make fur coats out of them and made them a target for hunters.

Mealybug

They have a symbiotic relationship with ants.

Mockingbird

Mockingbirds are incredible mimics that can learn hundreds of songs!

Mourning Warbler

The Mourning Warbler was named for its gray head, which resembles a mourning veil!

Needlefish

no stomach to digest food

Orb Weaver

Females are about four times the size of males

Owl

The owl can rotate its head some 270 degrees

Polyphemus moth

The Polyphemus moth doesn’t eat.

Rat Snakes

Rat snakes are constrictors from the Colubridae family of snakes.

Red-Shouldered Hawk

Red-Shouldered Hawks reuse the same nesting area each year.

Rooster

Will mate with the entire flock!

Seagull

Some gulls are capable of using tools

Smallmouth Bass

A fierce fighter!

Smokybrown Cockroach

Has up to 45 eggs per egg case

Snowberry Clearwing Moth

They are pollinators, just like bees.

Southern Black Racer

These snakes live underground, beneath piles of leaf litter or in thickets, and they are expert swimmers.

Mainer Animals List

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About the Author

AZ Animals is a growing team of animals experts, researchers, farmers, conservationists, writers, editors, and -- of course -- pet owners who have come together to help you better understand the animal kingdom and how we interact.

Animals in Maine FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions) 

What types of ticks are in Maine

Maine is home to several species of ticks. The most common ticks are the American dog tick, woodchuck tick, and deer tick.

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.