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Wildlife Highlights in Canada

Despite being a developed country, Canada has a huge focus on the outdoors and the natural environment in which we live, with some areas being brilliantly remote to give access to parts of ‘real’ Canada that offer the ideal wilderness wildlife holiday.

With numerous types of bears within the wild, along with deer, wolves, beavers and cougars, and the whale watching off the coast, Canadian wildlife really is a wonder. The Northern Lights or Aurora Borealis are also stunning here, casting a colourful light display over the clear winter nights.

Grizzly Bear

One of the strongest mammals in North America, the grizzly bear is a symbol of Canadian wilderness. More than half of Canada's 26,000 grizzlies reside in British Columbia, where they can be found amongst the soaring mountain ranges, deep rivers, and dense forests.

Black Bear

Blakc bears can be found in most non-urban areas of British Columbia and throughout Alberta with the exception of the southeast corner of the province. Black bears evolved in forest ecosystems; as a result, their current distribution is largely influenced by the amount of undisturbed forest cover available to them.

Polar Bear

Head to Arctic Canada, in the cold extreme land of Churchill; a forbidding and rugged land comprising icy tundra, mighty rivers and granite ridges where the King of the Arctic the polar bear roams in search of its preferred food source - seals. The season to view the white beasts is short, with just a 4-6 week window from mid-October to mid-November.

Spirit Bear

Kermode (spirit) bears can be black or white, and it is not uncommon to see black mums with white cubs, or vice versa. It is thought that spirit bears are actually better than their black counterparts at fishing as their coat makes them difficult for the fish to see. You can stay at Spirit Bear Lodge and search for these elusive bears, or cruise the coast on the Pacific Yellowfin. Almost exclusive to the Great Bear Rainforest of British Columbia, spirit bears feed on vegetation, abundant with bulbs, fruit, insects and rodents, as well as delicious salmon throughout the summer to fatten up for the long cold winters.

CAN St Canada Grizzly Bear Shutterstock Naturesmmentsuk


As Canada stretches from the Atlantic to the Pacific, many whale species can be seen depending on where you go.

Humpbacks can be seen in both and is probably the easiest to spot.

Blue whales can be seen on occasion and orcas are also see travelling in pods on both sides, with resident orcas inhabiting the waters of BC year round.

Minke and Belgua whales can also be seen.


Beavers are one of Canada's most iconic and emblematic animals, not only the largest rodent in North America but also an important symbol of Canadian wildlife and heritage. They inhabit various freshwater habitats, including rivers, streams, lakes, ponds, and marshes and are known as "ecosystem engineers" because of their ability to alter their habitats significantly. They build dams to create ponds, which provide them with protection from predators and easy access to food during the winter.


Bison, also known as buffalo, are iconic North American mammals known for their massive size and historic significance. In Canada, bison are a symbol of the country's heritage and a key part of its natural history. Bison populations were severely reduced in the 19th century, with some estimates suggesting a decline from millions to only a few hundred individuals. Conservation efforts have been made to restore their populations, and today, there are bison herds in various parts of Canada.

Bald Eagle

One of the most recognisable and majestic birds of prey in North America, primarily found in regions with access to water, including coastlines, rivers, lakes, and wetlands. Bald eagles are protected by various provincial and federal laws in Canada, making it illegal to harm or disturb them or their nests. Some bald eagles in Canada are migratory, traveling south for the winter, especially in more northern regions where water bodies freeze. Others remain in their breeding territories year-round.