South Dakota March 06, 2019
These 5 Out-Of-Place Creatures Have Been Spotted In South Dakota And You’ll Want To Steer Clear
Deer. Snakes. Coyotes. When it comes to native wildlife, South Dakotans know what to expect, so when something abnormal shows up, you know we are going to take notice! What’s weird for SoDak? Take, for instance, these five out-of-place creatures that have been spotted in recent years:
1. Mountain lion
Once incredibly common to South Dakota, the population of mountain lions has greatly diminished due to unregulated hunting and poachers. Thanks to sanctions placed on these once-endangered (to South Dakota) animals, mountains lions are beginning to make a comeback, so be sure to keep your eyes peeled for them when you visit the mountains!
2. Brown bear
While bears may seem like something you would commonly see in woodsy spots like the Black Hills, they are super uncommon, with the nearest bear populations said to be in the Wyoming Big Horn Mountains. That being said, you can imagine one man's surprise
when he caught one wandering around his property last summer
, which was captured via a motion sensor camera.
3. Black bear
Much like their lighter counterparts, black bears have been
as making their way into the Mount Rushmore State, most likely because they got separated from their pack and are searching for food. (Seeing as though South Dakota is home to Bear Country USA, you would think that bears were more of a thing here than they actually are.)
"Moose on the loose in Black Hills" read the headline of one
in the 2016 Rapid City Journal, which talked about one cow moose who was spotted numerous times traveling from Hill City to Lead. While the reports and sightings are overall rare, the South Dakota Game, Fish & Parks Department said they were keeping an eye on these unexpected guests.
5. Gray wolf
Last but certainly not least in recent animal sightings is the gray wolf, which is known for living in states like Minnesota, Montana, and Wyoming, but never SoDak! Making this story and sighting all the more memorable is that the animal was shot by a hunter, who then posted the encounter online.
For other more common South Dakota wildlife sightings, click on
9 Photos Of Wildlife In South Dakota That Will Drop Your Jaw.