Alaska is home to more than 1,100 known vertebrates, which includes a variety of birds, reptiles, amphibians, fish and mammals. Some Alaskan birds are the mallard duck, spruce grouse, northern three-toed woodpecker, Steller's jay and the common raven. Land animals include the red fox, Arctic fox, the polar bear, American black bear, brown bear, northern river otter, reindeer, moose, brown lemming and porcupine.Continue Reading
Alaskan waterways are home to fish, including the Alaska blackfish, Pacific ocean perch, sockeye, coho salmon, chinook salmon, rainbow trout, lake trout and Arctic grayling. A few cold-blooded animals live in Alaska. They include the Eskimo arctic butterfly, the treeline emerald dragonfly, the lugworm and the arrow worm. Reptiles and amphibians include the leatherback, loggerhead and green sea turtles, Columbia spotted frog, wood frog, roughskin newt, western toad, long-toed salamander and northwestern salamander.
Because of Alaska's harsh winters, both warm- and cold-blooded animals need to find ways to live through the low temperatures. The western toad spends as many as seven months hibernating in a burrow well below the frost line. Salamanders mostly live underground near streams that keep the temperature above freezing.
Black and brown bears are famous for hibernating during the Alaskan winter. They feed voraciously during the summer months to have enough fat to sustain them during their long sleep.Learn more about Alaska