Great Smoky Mountains National Park contains some of the largest tracts of wilderness in the East and is a critical sanctuary for a wide variety of animals. Protected in the park are some 65 species of mammals, over 200 varieties of birds, 67 native fish species, and more than 80 types of reptiles and amphibians.

Every Spring, the park hosts a complementary event called Wilderness Wildlife Week where nature lovers, hikers and outdoors enthusiasts unite to take part in a variety of programs for all ages and interests. From educational programs designed specifically for the youngsters to guided hikes into the Great Smoky Mountains for the more adventurous folks, Wilderness Wildlife Week offers a variety of programs for all ages and interests.

Feeding wildlife is prohibited in the national park. (Title 36, Chapter 1, Section 2.2 (2) Code of Regulations, Wildlife protection).