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There and Back Again...

Migratory Species across Air, Land, and Water in National Park Service Sites

Bat Bighorn Sheep Humpback Whale Pronghorn
Many species including bats, bighorn sheep, humpback whales, and pronghorn depend on national parks during their migration.

The National Park Service manages more than 84 million acres, many of which provide vital habitat to migratory wildlife. Examples of such habitat include:

  • breeding beaches for sea turtles
  • migration corridors for pronghorn and caribou
  • spawning areas for salmon
  • hibernation, breeding, and foraging sites for bats
  • breeding, calving (whales), pupping (seals), and haul out areas for seals and whales
  • habitats that support migratory birds and insects

Migratory movements take many species across park boundaries where they may encounter different land use practices. Therefore, threats that migratory species face hundreds or thousands of miles from a national park may impact the park's wildlife or ecosystems.

Preserving migratory species in our national parks requires collaboration with other federal agencies, private landowners, non-government organizations, and even other countries.

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Last Updated: February 26, 2016