The Wild Side - Your December Wildlife Update

Having trouble viewing this email? View it as a Web pageBookmark and Share


Dec. 20, 2018

Gray Treefrog_Dave Huth_Flickr


Tackling Oklahoma’s Freezing Temperatures

Explanations of wildlife surviving Oklahoma’s fickle winters often feature birds flying south and bears retreating to their hibernation den. But these stories rarely address how Oklahoma’s reptiles and amphibians endure our sometimes bitter cold temperatures. Unlike humans, salamanders, frogs, turtles, lizards and snakes do not generate enough metabolic heat or have enough insulation to maintain their body temperature. Instead, they must rely on the surrounding environment and face a life or death challenge when winter air temperatures drop below freezing.

Most reptiles and amphibians fight back with one of three strategies  

Bald Eagle_Jeremiah Zurenda


Bald Eagle Watches Scheduled Across State

Oklahoma’s bald eagle population soars each winter, offering prime eagle watching opportunities! Nearly two dozen public watches have been scheduled at conservation areas this winter. Take advantage of these tours to see our nation’s symbol at our lakes and rivers and learn more about bald eagle ecology and their recovery story.

Get watch details at

Take a Stand for Wildlife


Oklahoma's Wildlife to Benefit from 2018 Tax Return

Tax season is just around the corner and this year’s tax return can help our nongame wildlife! Oklahomans receiving a refund in tax year 2018 can contribute all or a part of the refund to the Wildlife Department’s Wildlife Diversity Fund. These donations can nearly triple in value when they are leveraged against federal wildlife funds, allowing biologists to spend more time in the field learning about our wildlife.

The Wildlife Department and it's Wildlife Diversity Program do not receive general state tax appropriates. We are funded by the sale of hunting and fishing license, federal Wildlife and Sportfish Restoration Program grants and private donations. 

Look for this donation opportunity on Schedule 511-H or make a year-end, tax-deductible donation at

Pinecone Feeder


Wildlife Friendly Holiday Crafts by the Dozen

Looking for a holiday craft that will reap wildlife rewards? The Habitat Network shared a dozen projects that are great for a nature-loving family … and provide habitat for backyard wildlife! From a simple water dish to wildlife woodworking designs, crafts come with easy to follow instructions and a downloadable tip sheet.  

Get crafting with these 12 wildlife-themed creations

Calendar of Events

Project Feeder Watch

Nov. 10 - April 5

Sutton Award Scholarship Program (Grades 10-12)

Submission period for artwork and essay:  Dec. 1 - Jan. 10

Christmas Bird Count

Dec. 14, 2018 - Jan. 5, 2019

Duck! Duck! Goose! & Hawks! Tour

Jan. 12, 2019
Hackberry Flat Center


The Wild Side e-newsletter is a project of the Oklahoma Department of Wildlife Conservation's Wildlife Diversity Program. The Wildlife Diversity Program monitors, manages and promotes rare, declining, and endangered wildlife, as well as common wildlife not fished or hunted. It is primarily funded by the sales of Wildlife Department license plates, publication sales and private donors. 

Get involved with the Wildlife Diversity Program and learn more about Oklahoma's nongame wildlife at: