Local Wildlife Near Wakeeney, KS | WaKeeney KOA

Local Wildlife Near Wakeeney, KS | WaKeeney KOA

The early settlers of Wakeeney, Kansas, wanted to escape the pressures of city-dwelling and enjoy a simpler way of life. Today, travelers flock to Wakeeney from far and wide to enjoy a quiet, relaxing camping experience and explore wildlife native to Kansas.

Wakeeney KOA Journey sits halfway between Kansas City and Denver in the nation's heartland, making it the perfect place to learn about Kansas' local wildlife. Find out more about the types of wildlife you can expect to see on your next Wakeeney camping adventure.


From birds of prey to burrowing owls, here are the types of birds who make themselves at home in Kansas' prairie grass:

  • Prairie chickens: The prairie chicken is a large, colorful grouse native to Kansas. These beautiful birds thrive on a diet of grains, leaves, seeds and insects.
  • Burrowing owls: The burrowing owl is a petite, long-legged owl that roosts in vacant burrows made by other animals, including prairie dogs. This curious-looking, big-eyed bird prefers Kansas' dry, open grasslands over forested areas, and you can typically spot them hunting during sunrise and sunset.
  • Bald eagles: The American bald eagle is America's most prolific bird of prey. You can find these stunning birds preying on the small mammals in Kansas' tall grass and lakes, including fish, mice, snakes, squirrels and muskrats.


Many mammals call the Kansas grasslands home, including the official state animal — the bison. Kansas has one of the nation's largest bison populations. You can catch these majestic creatures grazing across the state, including in the Historic Lake Scott State Park and Smoky Valley Ranch near Wakeeney. 

While buffalo are beautiful, keeping your distance is important — as these animals are wild and unpredictable. If you want a closer look, bring a pair of binoculars and remain at least 25 yards away from these large, agile creatures. If you can, stay in your vehicle while buffalo watching.

Other smaller mammals that reside in the prairies of Kansas include: 

  • Black-tailed prairie dogs
  • Black-footed ferrets
  • Pocket gophers
  • Cottontail rabbits
  • Muskrats
  • Raccoons
  • Opossums
  • Moles
  • Chipmunks
  • Beavers
  • Coyotes
  • Foxes
  • Bobcats
  • White-tailed deer


Fancy a freshwater fishing trip near Wakeeney, Kansas? Anglers can expect to catch the following fish species in the waters surrounding Wakeeney:

  • Channel catfish: The channel catfish — or channel cat — is considered the official fish of Kansas. Anglers can wrangle catfish in the Cedar Bluff Reservoir using several kinds of bait, including crickets and minnows.
  • Crappie: Crappie is another abundant freshwater fish in the many lakes and rivers surrounding Wakeeney, Kansas, including the Cedar Bluff Reservoir, Sheridan County State Lake and Wilson Lake.
  • White bass: Anglers often catch sizable white bass — a beautiful, silver-white sport fish — in the reservoirs, lakes, rivers and creeks surrounding Wakeeney, including the Smoky Hill River.

Explore Wildlife Local to Kansas at Wakeeney KOA Journey

Whether you want to see burrowing owls nesting within the Smoky Valley Scenic Byway's grasslands or catch a channel cat in the Cedar Bluff Reservoir, you are never too far from your next outdoor adventure when you camp at Wakeeney KOA Journey. Book your campsite online today! 

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