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Established in 2020, the Christopher Farm and Gardens Nature Studies Center houses a taxidermy collection that includes native Wisconsin animals and animals found throughout other regions of the United States. In line with the Christopher Farm and Garden’s dedication to education, the Nature Studies Center offers a wonderful opportunity for children of all ages to learn and get an up-close view into the lives of Wisconsin wildlife. Below you will find information for several animals found within our collection that will include the animal’s population statistics, habits, diet, and a few fun facts.

Animals Found in the Nature Studies Center:

Fish: Arctic Grayling, Black Crappie, Bluegill, Brook Trout, Brown Trout, Catfish, Chinook Salmon, Coho Salmon, Lake Sturgeon, lake Trout, Largemouth Bass, Musky, Northern Pike, Pumpkin Seed, Rainbow Trout, Rock Bass, Smallmouth Bass, Walleye, and Yellow Perch

Mammals: Badger, Beaver, Black Bear, Blonde Bear, Bobcat, Caribou, Chipmunk, Cottontail Rabbit, Coyote, Cross Fox, Fisher, Fox, Horned Goat, Horned Sheep, Javelina, Mink, Muskrat, Otter, Painted Bat, Porcupine, Red Squirrel, Skunk, Squirrel, Weasel, White Weasel, White-tailed Deer, Wolf, and Woodchuck

Birds: Canadian Goose, Drake Mallard, Pheasant, Pintail Duck and Teal Duck

Insects: Giant Silk Moth, Cicada, Common Green Darner Dragonfly, Giant Centipede, Paper Wasp nests, Scorpion, Jewel Beetle, Golden Leg Beetle, Ocytes Rhino Beetle, Green Sagra Beetle, Dalman Stag Beetle, Canal Stag Beetle, Longhorn Beetle, Praying Mantis

Butterflies: Leopard Lacewing, Lemon Emigrant, Common Jay, Lime Butterfly, Common Bluebottle, Tawny Rajah, Striped Blue Crow, Common Archduke

WI State Animals


Coyote (Canis latrans): The coyote is a medium-sized member of the canine family. Average coyote weight is between 20-30 lbs., though they can weigh up to 50 lbs. Coyote fur can be a variety of colors including gray, tawny, red, blond and black. They are opportunistic omnivores (meaning they will eat anything), but primarily consume deer (especially fawns and roadkills), rabbits, small mammals and fruit. They give birth in late spring to two to eight young. Coyotes will form packs; generally, these packs are family groups, including a breeding male and female, young from the current year and young from the previous year.  Learn how to tell a coyote from a wolf. Coyotes may be hunted year-round with the appropriate license, though the trapping season is restricted.

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Gray Fox

Gray fox (Urocyon cinereoargenteus): The gray fox is the smallest canine found in Wisconsin. Gray foxes, as their name suggests, have gray fur with white on the chins and throats and brown undersides. They have a black stipe down the top of their tail and do not have the white tip like red foxes do. They are unique because they have semi-retractable claws which allow them to climb trees, and they are one of only two canine species in the world that can do so. They are more common in southern Wisconsin. There is a limited trapping season on the gray fox that requires the appropriate license.

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