What Types of Animals Live in the State of California?

What Types of Animals Live in the State of California?
••• Jupiterimages/Photos.com/Getty Images

Because of California’s vast size and the fact that it’s a coastal state, it offers a bounteous array of animals. A number of different climates -- from the temperate mountains in the north to California’s desert, and from coastal mountains to arid chaparral -- contribute to this bounty of animal creatures. And in addition to all the animals that inhabit California’s land, there is another world beneath the waves of the Pacific Ocean.


The Pacific Northwest mountain lion is one of California's largest predators.
••• Jupiterimages/Photos.com/Getty Images

California’s largest land animals live in the mountains. The Cascades in the northern part of the state and the Sierra Nevada Mountains provide excellent habitats for animals. The grizzly bear was a common animal in the Santa Cruz Mountains until the 1880’s when the last one was killed. The remaining large land animals are nocturnal. Bobcats and mountain lions are among the largest creatures now. Coyotes, foxes, raccoons, skunks, weasels, rabbits and deer are additional land mammals that live in California.


The nation's own bald eagle calls the state of California home.
••• Jupiterimages/Photos.com/Getty Images

Some of California’s most breathtaking birds are its birds of prey. Bald eagles and their larger cousin, the golden eagle are common California birds. Spotted owls, great horned owls and common barn owls are found throughout the state, particularly in the north. The coastlines and wet areas of California are home to loons, herons, ibis, gulls, pelicans, geese and ducks. The mountains provide habitat for pheasants, woodpeckers, hummingbirds, jays, magpies and swallows.

Reptiles, Arthropods and Insects

The California desert provides a very different picture than that of the state's mountains. Snakes and scorpions make their homes in the dry deserts of California. Five different types of rattlesnake can be found here including the sidewinder and Mojave rattlesnake. As if that dynamic duo isn’t enough, another poisonous resident of California is the black widow spider. They can be found in homes, woodpiles and old buildings. Centipedes and non-poisonous tarantulas are abundant in California. Common insects include velvet ants and the cone-nose kissing bug.

Sea Creatures

Sea lions frequent the California coasts every year.
••• Jupiterimages/Photos.com/Getty Images

Some larger animals that make the Pacific California coast their home include the California sea lion, blue whale, Pacific bottlenose dolphin and the California sea otter. Beneath the surf of the Pacific Ocean floor, you’ll find even more life, including bat sea stars, moray eels, fiddler crabs, the California brown sea hair and California mussels. Giant sea kelp provide habitat for the bluebanded goby, giant sea bass, leopard shark, Pacific mackerel and two-spotted octopus.

Related Articles

What Kind of Animals Are in Texas' North Central Plains...
Types of Animals in the Temperate Woodland & Shrubland
The Mozambique Ecosystem
Wild Animals Found in Virginia
In Which States Are Dinosaur Fossils Found?
Animals Native to the State of North Carolina
Animals in the Tropical Desert
Plants & Animals in Alaska
Fossil Hunting in Oklahoma
Animals That Are Found in Tennessee Ecosystems
List of Mammals in Tennessee
Ecosystem Diversity in Louisiana
Native Birds That Live in Florida
What Predatory Wild Animals Are Local in Pennsylvania?
Aggressive Snakes in Texas
Animals & Plants That Live on Mountains
Animals & Plants in Spain
What Kind of Wildlife Live in the Deserts?
Animals in a Temperate Climate
Important Landforms in the U.S.

Dont Go!

We Have More Great Sciencing Articles!