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Woman holding binoculars Join today and get outside at one of our 60+ wildlife sanctuaries.
red squirrel climbing on tree
Red Squirrel © Ken Conway

Mammals in Massachusetts

Find information about a variety of mammals found in Massachusetts.

A bat flies through sky during the day.

Milbury, MA © Eric Windover


There are nine species of bats that have historically lived in Massachusetts, several of which are state listed as Endangered.  

black bear
© Matthew Beverly


The only bear species that makes its home in Massachusetts is the black bear.

A beaver swims through lily pads.

© Rajashree Kotejoshyer


Easily recognizable by its long, broad tail, and its noticeably big and sharp front incisor teeth, beavers are most active at night.

Bobcat in the snow by reeds, looking over its shoulder at photographer.
Groton, MA © Scott Eggimann


The bobcat is the only species of wild cat now found in Massachusetts.

Cottontail rabbit nibbles grass.

Wayland, MA © Harris Stein

Cottontail Rabbits

Massachusetts is home to two species of wild rabbit—the native New England Cottontail and the non-native Eastern Cottontail.

Chipmunk with paw raised sitting on a rock on a trail.

Broadmoor Wildlife Sanctuary, Natick, MA © Andi Blumenau


The Eastern Chipmunk is an industrious member of the squirrel family found in the United States, mainly east of the Great Plains.

Quincy, MA © Karen Walker


Coyotes are resourceful creatures who have successfully adapted to areas altered by people.

A deer stands amid ferns, grass, and trees on a sunny day.

© Evan Windover


The white-tailed deer is the most abundant of Massachusetts' large game animals.

A fisher looks over its shoulder by the edge of water.

Groton, MA © Scott Eggimann


Although many people call them “fisher cats,” fishers are neither members of the feline family, nor do they catch fish.

fox on sandy dune with grass
© Jim O'Driscoll


Learn about foxes in Massachusetts including their life cycle, habits, and how to identify them. 

A moose swims past a beaver lodge.

© Claudia Pommer


Moose can be found in central and western Massachusetts. Occasionally, a moose may even be spotted in the eastern part of the state.

Mole emerging from the ground
Mole @ Kentish Plumber/Flickr


While some landowners disdain moles, their benefits are numerous.

Three raccoons lounge in a tree.

© Kwan Cheung


Raccoons typically inhabit wooded areas adjacent to a water source; however, because they can find good food where people live.

North American River Otters
North American River Otters © Charlene Gaboriault

North American River Otters

The charismatic clowns of the weasel family, otters can be found near streams, rivers, lakes, and swamps.

An opossum sits on a tree branch amid red fruits in the middle of winter.

© Laurene Cogswell


The Virginia opossum is more closely related to kangaroos than to any other mammal in North America. 

Porcupine sitting in a leafy tree.

Hardwick, MA © Lisa Strout


Porcupines, well known for the quills, are the second largest rodent in North America.

A gray squirrel eats in a tree as snow falls.

© Oliver Lueger


An extremely adaptable species, squirrels are at home everywhere from midtown parks to oak forests.

Three skunks amble through the grass.

© Scott Eggimann


With their bold black and white patterning, bushy tails and wobbly gaits, skunks are easy to recognize.

A groundhog (woodchuck) huddles between rocks in a woodsy area.

Douglas, MA © Waddy Stryker

Woodchucks (Groundhogs)

The woodchuck belongs to the marmot family. It goes by many names, including groundhog and whistle pig.