Such a beautiful place we live in, here in La Quinta, and we aren’t just blessed with gorgeous topography, we’ve got some amazing wildlife in the Coachella Valley too. Many of these animals have adapted to the harsh, hot, arid and desolate desert landscape and there are a number of species here that can’t be found anywhere else in the world. Many have low water requirements, are adapted to live in the sand or to reflect solar radiation. They will often live under the ground to seek shelter from the heat and many are nocturnal, taking advantage of the cooler times in the desert. You’ll also see many wildlife in the Coachella Valley that are cryptically colored or camouflaged to avoid predators.
Coyotes – while some see these animals as a nuisance, they are the most common large mammal in the wildlife in the Coachella Valley. While coyotes could live in the desert without having contact with humans, they are often found in the desert neighborhoods, which can cause worry for people with small animals.
Bats – there are at least 15 bat species in the valley, including the numerous western pipistrelle and the rare spotted bat. Bats are the valley’s most common animal.
Birds – there are at least 56 species of birds who live here and many are migrant landbirds. Bird density can be low in desert areas and many of the birds here are desert-dwelling birds like:
- Gambel’s quail
- Greater roadrunner
- Mourning dove
- Common raven
- Turkey vulture
- Red-tailed hawk
Reptiles and amphibians – these types of wildlife are abundant in our desert landscape. They include lizards, snakes and toads and all of these have adaptations to regulate their body temperature. They occupy a wide range of habitats in the desert, which include rock dwelling, digging, burrowing and more. Both diurnal and nocturnal species of reptiles and amphibians wildlife in the Coachella Valley, and the time of year will tell when they are most active. Spring and fall is when they are most active during early morning and late summer is when they are active in the afternoon.
Because of in-migration to the area, there are some threats to our desert landscape and its biodiversity. Habitat loss is of prime concern, which has led to the decline in some species. As well, illegal uses like unauthorized roads and trash dumping cause havoc to wildlife like swimming lizards and snakes.