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NY DEC Watchable Wildlife

Outdoor Discovery

Allegany State Park
Description: At more than 60,000 acres, Allegany is one of the largest state parks in the nation. Visit any pond or wetland in this park on a warm, sunny day, and you’ll find yourself enchanted by dipping, diving and hovering dragonflies and damselflies in glittering metallic colors. Quiet evenings on the grounds around Red House Lake reveal deer, while black bears roam the woodlands, although they are usually secretive and rarely offer more than a glimpse.

Wilderness habitats include old-growth hardwood and second-growth pine forests covering mountains and rolling hills, as well as meadows, wetlands, lakes and beaver ponds. From spring through winter, you’ll discover dozens of species of birds, mammals, amphibians and insects throughout the park.

Wildlife to Watch: You may spot a bald eagle or osprey perched in a dead tree at the edge of a lake or circling the sky above, looking to swoop down and snag fish. Turkey vultures, great horned owls and barred owls are other raptors you may encounter.

Along lakeshores or wading in ponds and wetlands, great blue herons may be seen stabbing for fish and frogs. Tundra swans and dabbling ducks patrol the shallows, while swallows swoop and flit during the day as they pursue their favorite meal of mosquitoes.

Overhead, the raucous calls of ravens alert you to their presence. Wild turkeys scratch the forest floor looking for acorns, beechnuts and insects. Shrubs, meadows and forest margins host eastern bluebirds and many species of warblers.

The forests are home to a host of smaller mammals, including ever-present raccoons, eastern gray and red squirrels, skunks, red foxes, fishers, porcupines, bobcats, coyotes, black squirrels, weasels and minks. Beavers can be found maintaining their dams or swimming in the ponds they create.

Wetlands are where you may also see painted or snapping turtles sunning themselves. Other interesting reptiles include smooth green, ringneck and red-bellied snakes. Amphibian species include Allegany dusky and spotted salamanders, as well as red efts, red-spotted newts, wood and green frogs, and bullfrogs.

In the warmer months, you may see several species of dragonflies and damselflies, as well as swallowtail, mourning cloak and monarch butterflies.

Special Tips: The park is open year-round, 24 hours a day. There is a vehicle-use fee. Hunting and fishing are allowed in season.

This site has some accessible features, including the visitors centers and museums.

716-354-9121, 2373 Allegany State Park, Rte. 1, Salamanca, NY 14779,


Other Activities: The Quaker area’s many trails are available for hiking, horseback riding and snowshoeing. In summer, naturalist-guided hikes are offered.

The Red House area offers 5 miles of paved bike paths, as well as mountain bike and cross-country ski trails. The National North Country Trail also traverses the park.

Ownership: NYS Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation 
Size: 64,800 acres 
Closest Town: Salamanca

RestroomsParkingTent CampingFishingCross Country SkiingHikingPicnic tablesVisitor CenterHuntingHorse TrailsHandicap AccessibleLarge BoatsDrinking WaterSwimmingShowersBicycling

Best Seasons for Wildlife Viewing:

Please see map link below

Driving Directions:
Take I-86 to either exit 18 for the Quaker area or exit 19 for the Red House area and follow signs into the park.

Map Link

Allegany State Park : Wildlife Viewing Area