Wildlife & Birding
Bring your cameras and binoculars, the Ozarks are full of most mammals found in North America. With a few exceptions, like Moose (that would be cool) Polar Bears (not so cool) and Grizzly Bear (thank goodness), they all can and do make an appearance at Lake Lucerne.
Oh, don’t be worried about bears. We have black bear in the area, but have never seen one. Same with the very shy Mountain Lion.
Keep an eye open for the River Otter – he or she visits frequently, but has been very camera shy. If you get a picture, please we will add it to our flcker page.
We have recently been recognized by the National Wildlife Federation as a Certified Wildlife Habitat. We aspire to staying certified by practicing sustainable gardening and landscaping, providing cover and safe areas for raising young, and maintaining water and food sources in our natural environment.
Dear Guests: You are staying in the woods – there is wildlife out your door. Yes, there are bugs – ticks, chiggers, mosquitoes, spiders, hornets, etc. Use bug repellant as necessary – we try to keep some in the cottages, but sometimes it runs off. The cottages are treated to keep bugs out, but this is not fool proof when residing in the woods. We keep bug killer under the sinks – please use only when necessary, and sparingly.
There are also snakes – Arkansas has three of the four poisonous varieties found in the United States: cottonmouth (water moccasin), copperheads and various rattlesnakes. Rattlesnakes are shy and will try to stay away from humans. Copperheads and Cottonmouths are related, and are more territorial.
I have viewed an abundance of the good varieties of snakes – snakes that keep the poisonous ones away. Since I first began hiking on the Lake Lucerne property in 2004, I have only seen one copperhead and one pigmy rattlesnake while working on the acreage.
The large, brown snakes most visible during the early spring to early summer along the lakes edges are mostly Brown Water Snakes. Please be kind to our wildlife, including snakes, and call the office if you have questions or problems. Please be careful where you are walking. Snakes have no hearing – they sense vibration, and do not want to be around humans, so stomp the ground or bang a stick on the ground in front of you when going through tall grass or brush.
Most things are harmless, and more a nuisance to humans than a real threat. Please treat our wildlife with respect and call the office with any concerns. Any guest discovered or suspected of killing or poaching our wildlife will be asked to leave immediately, no refunds, and reported to Fish and Game Law Enforcement.
We encourage you to ask questions – the owner is happy to help identify or give information about our Ozark haven and its residents.
If you see an injured animal, including our geese, please be kind and notify us immediately, so we can respond appropriately. We have a small mammal rescue center nearby, as well as a vet on call.
Yes, there are bears and mountain lion in this part of Arkansas, but I have never seen one, nor have any of our Lake neighbors.
Here is a list of mammals, birds and reptiles you may encounter, if lucky:
- Bald Eagles
- Beaver (hopefully not –very destructive to our trees)
- Birds: all kinds of finch, blue bird, cardinal, blue jay, robin, catbird, titmouse, chickadee, gold thrush, lark, wren, sparrow, crow, warblers…
- Blue Herons
- Bobcat (if real lucky)
- Bull Frogs – and many other frogs
- Coyote* – yes you can hear them yipping and howling after dark
- Fox* – Gray and Red
- Lizards – all kinds
- Owls* – you can hear owls hooting daily in the late afternoon
- Pilated Woodpeckers (known as Woody the Woodpeckers)
- River Otter
- Turkey Vultures
- Turtles of all kinds, including snapping turtles
- Woodchucks or Groundhogs (same thing)
*Normally nocturnal (out at night)
About our Bats:
Because of the abundance of caves in the Ozarks, we have lots of bats. Bats are our friends – they keep the mosquito population down, and they are virtually harmless. They do not attack humans, and usually are very shy. They are normally out only at night, and work hard at catching their body weight in bugs to feed their young. If you find a bat out during the day, it is probably injured or ill. Please call the main office as soon as possible so we can assist. Keep kids and pets away from the injured bat.
About our Skunks:
They only spray when they feel threatened. If you encounter one, move slowly and back away. Tell your dog to do the same. Call us if your dog makes a bad decision, and we will try to help.