We are home to many endangered species including the red-legged frog, the western painted turtle, sharp-tailed snake (harmless and very small!) and more. The Salt Spring Island Conservancy is very active and manages 6 nature reserves on-island, and we have a Wildlife Rehabilitation Centre that rescues and rehabilitates all wildlife - anything from baby squirrels to owls to seals! And you will find deer everywhere on the island.

 

Salt Spring Amphibians

Amphibians (meaning frogs, toads and salamanders) are threatened worldwide - in large part due to habitat loss, disease and introduced species that prey on native species.

On Salt Spring we have the adorable Pacific Chorus Tree Frog, Rough Skinned Newts, the introduced Bullfrog, the Red-Legged Frog (a species at risk), various salamanders and more.  If you're near a wetland the Tree Frog population starts its chorus in March running throughout the summer - and it sounds like you're holidaying somewhere tropical!

 

Salt Spring Mammals

Deer-MP900262568SMWe have land, air, river and sea-based mammals in a wide variety of habitat.

Land and Air-Based mammals include mink, weasels, voles and bats and we even have Coypu (introduced)! Some mammals like deer, rabbit and raccoons are common and easily seen. And we have an occasional Black Bear and cougar that is believed to swim across from nearby Vancouver Island - although rarely seen.

Water-based mammals include beavers, river otters, seals, sea-lions, orcas and other whales and porpoise and dolphin pods are sometimes seen.

 

Alligator Lizard May 2012Salt Spring Reptiles

Salt Spring Island is believed to be home to at least 6 species of reptiles including The Northern Alligator Lizard (pictured right), Western Painted Turtle and both Garter and Sharp-Tailed Snakes. In case you were wondering - NONE of our reptiles are poisonous! The Western Painted Turtle and Sharp-Tailed Snake are endangered.

 

Salt Spring Birds

Downy Woodpecker at a local B&BSalt Spring is a bird-watcher's paradise with varied habitats that attract a wide range of birds - including Great Blue Herons, Bald Eagles, Belted Kingfishers, Crossbills, 5 species of Woodpecker, Quail, Owls including the Barred Owl, Screech Owl and Great Horned Owl, Crossbills, Seabirds galore. There is also a Mountain Bluebird reintroduction program. And that doesn't include our seasonal residents like the Turkey Vulture, Western Tanager and the bird that for me heralds the arrival of Summer - Swainson's Thrush.

 

00022Salt Spring Butterflies and Bugs

We have an amazing entymologist (insect expert!) living on Salt Spring Island - Linda Gilkeson. For the bug-lovers there is plenty to admire - including the Swallowtail Butterflies, moths (see the photo of a newly hatched bumblebee moth),  boring beetles (which are actually quite interesting!), native bees, slugs and snails, centipedes and so much more!

 

Fungi-on-Dunbabin-TrailSalt Spring Mushrooms & Fungi

We have many mushrooms and fungi on Salt Spring Island. And many residents who are passionate and knowledgeable about foraging for local fungi.

 

021Salt Spring Flowers, Trees & Plants

Salt Spring Island has many wildflowers (see the Trillium Lilies),  plants, trees (like the endangered Garry Oak) and beautiful Arbutus and even some oddities like Indian Pipe.

 

Wildlife Slideshow!