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From Wild Cats to Domestic Felines, Wildlife In West Virginia Is Fun And Accessible

Wild and wonderful West Virginia is full of wildlife ranging from African exotics to native fauna. Hovatter’s Wildlife Zoo in Kingwood has more than 30 species of native and exotic animals – you can see white tigers, a spotted leopard, and a grizzly bear.

The West Virginia State Wildlife Center, south of Buckhannon, is a modern facility perfect for families wanting an introduction to the state’s wildlife. An accessible 1.25-mile trail winds through a mature hardwood forest and past enclosures where visitors can see black bears, a boar, coyotes, elk, bison, wild turkeys, foxes, a ring-necked pheasant, bobcats, a golden eagle and a fisher, and even a skunk and a raccoon.

The Oglebay Park Good Zoo has 50 species, including 20 which are rare or endangered. You can see a bald eagle, domestic animals like llamas and donkeys, and even a lorikeet, red pandas, a lemur, and a cheetah. Want to learn about the state’s aquatic wildlife? Check out the White Sulphur Springs National Fish Hatchery, where visitors can take hatchery tours and see rainbow trout being raised.

Ready for something totally different? Check out Give Purrs A Chance, A Berkeley Springs cat adoption and play facility with a cat café.

Summersville Lake State Wildlife Area

During your next trip into West Virginia, make plans to visit Summersville, where you'll be just minutes from Summersville Lake State Wildlife Area. A sterling destination for hunters and anglers, the Summersville Lake State Wildlife Area is nearly 6,000 acres of pristine West Virginia landscape, perfect for a day-trip during any season of the year.

With picnic areas, public restrooms, and plenty of open, fresh air, the Summersville Lake State Wildlife Area is one of the more popular destinations for hunters and anglers – some traveling from as far west as Charleston, or Barboursville.

The actual Summersville Lake is a mammoth all it's own – stretching for miles, the lake is nearly 2,800 acres in overall size. For a uniquely West Virginian outdoor experience, make your way this next trip, to Summersville Lake State Wildlife Area.