Wildlife Viewing is Nature at it's best in Dahlonega, and observing and Identifying local wildlife can seem a world away. Dahlonega and Northeast Georgia are a playground for both wildlife watchers and our fauna friends! An abundance of Deer, Turkey, Bear, small furbearers can be seen as well as picnicking and watching birds. Come slow down to watch our animals cross your path in Dahlonega's great outdoors, National Forest, or visit our Wildlife Preserves and Zoos Attractions with both local and exotic experiences.
If you spend enough time hiking or picnicking in the North Georgia mountains, odds are it's only a matter of time before your next bear encounter. Fortunately, the black bear tends to be friendly and will not attack humans unless provoked.
Of course, the best way to avoid run-ins with Georgia's largest mammal is taking measures to prevent a bear encounter.
For starters, you need to know that bear attacks in the wild are extremely rare. But there are some bear safety tips you can take away that will make you feel more relaxed and minimize your risk when you are traveling in areas that are home to bears.
If you see a bear remain watchful. Do not approach it. If your presence causes the bear to change its behavior (stops feeding, changes its travel direction, watches you, etc.) - you're too close. Being too close may promote aggressive behavior from the bear such as running toward you, making loud noises, or swatting the ground. The bear is demanding more space. Don't run, but slowly back away, watching the bear. Try to increase the distance between you and the bear. The bear will probably do the same.
If a bear persistently follows or approaches you, without vocalizing, or paw swatting, change your direction. If the bear continues to follow you, stand your ground. If the bear gets closer, talk loudly or shout at it. Act aggressively to intimidate the bear. Act together as a group if you have companions. Make yourselves look as large as possible (for example, move to higher ground). Throw non-food objects such as rocks at the bear. Use a deterrent such as a stout stick. Don't run and don't turn away from the bear. Don't leave food for the bear; this encourages further problems.
Most injuries from black bear attacks are minor and result from a bear attempting to get at people's food. If the bear's behavior indicates that it is after your food and you're physically attacked, separate yourself from the food and slowly back away.
If the bear shows no interest in your food and you're physically attacked, fight back aggressively with any available object - the bear may consider you as prey!
The black bear's keen sense of smell leads it to insects, nuts and berries, but the animal is also enticed by the tantalizing smells of human food and garbage such as hot dogs, apple cores, chips, and watermelon rinds left on the ground in picnic areas, campgrounds, and along trails. Feeding bears or allowing them access to human food and garbage causes a number of problems:
Visitors are urged to view all wildlife at a safe distance and to never throw food or garbage on the ground or leave it unattended. Garbage Kills Bears!Read More
Then Georgia's Wildlife Resources Division Areas (WRDs) are perfect for you! There are 106 WRD areas listed for bird watching below that are located in 7 Regions. Enjoy!
Dahlonega is near two great WRDs in Region 2 with such wonderful wildlife as Deer and Bear, Turkey, Small Game, Raccoon, Opossum, Fox, Bobcat, Raccoon, Opossum, Waterfowl, Feral Hogs. Located in Lumpkin and Union counties.
Chestatee WMA - 25,000 acres
Blue Ridge WMA - 38,900 acres. Located 10 miles north of Dahlonega
Directions From Dahlonega: To the Jones Creek check station: Travel 9 miles west on Hwy. 52 to Nimblewill Rd.; turn right and go 2.4 miles; turn right on USFS Rd. #28 and go 2.4 miles to USFS Road #77; take left fork to check station. To the Rock Creek check station: Take GA 60 north for 28 miles to jct. with USFS Road #69; turn left and go 1 mile to the check station.
Wildlife Game Management - (770) 535-5700
Non-Game Wildlife & Natural Heritage - (770) 918-6411
Law Enforcement - (770) 535-5499
The golden-winged warbler, a diminutive bird splashed with bright-yellow highlights, had it good in the Southern Appalachians 100 years ago. The golden-winged warbler is a federal species of concern - only about 12 pairs of golden-wings still nest here.
Animal lovers, families, and groups can tour, touch, and feed at two unique wildlife attractions in Dahlonega. From exotic and endangered species to a variety of rare and unique farm animals, visitors enjoy hundreds of animals and can experience special walks and behind the scenes tours that are always favorites with adults and the kids!
The Chestatee Wildlife Preserve features over 100 animals, with many different species and sits on over 20 acres of gently rolling farmland. The Preserve is a magical place to walk around or feed some of the animals. The pace of the Preserve is meant to be slow as guests meander among the exhibits. They can’t help but see and hear new things. This is when the questions usually start and volunteers circulating throughout the property are quick to help with answers that hopefully lead to more questions.
Chestatee Wildlife Preserve is a non-profit corporation and fully licensed rescue, exotic animal and wildlife preserve. The Preserve is funded through guest admission fees, corporate, and personal donations.
North Georgia Zoo is home to over 80 different species of exotic animals. From alligators, monkeys, kangaroos, wildcats, zebras and more! Get up close and personal with some of their amazing animal ambassadors. Enjoy visiting with hundreds of animals! Visit with the new babies and meet some famous animals! Have fun feeding a variety or rare, mini, and unique farm animals. Join North Georgia Zoo for their new, improved Wildlife Walks - a hands on experience you won't forget!!
Take a ride through the zoo to view animals such as camels, zebras, water buffalo and more. Pony rides and bottle feeding are always a favorite with the kids! Visit us this year for your family adventure!Read More
Dahlonega-Lumpkin County Chamber & Visitors Bureau | 13 South Park Street | Dahlonega, GA 30533 | (706) 864-3711 or (800) 231-5543.