WOLVES & FOXES - Canidae

As with the red fox, the species has been subjected to rabies epidemics where 20 percent of a local population has died. It is also subjected to predation by other carnivores such as wolves, and has been widely hunted by man for its fur. Still the species survives in large numbers. It has adapted well to its harsh environment and in good years produces large litters.


BEARS - Ursidae

The brown bear (sometimes called a grizzly in North America) is a large animal, usually dark brown in color, though it can vary from a light creamy shade through to black. The brown bear for the most part leads a solitary life with the exception of females and young; sibling groups stay together for 1 - 2 years after leaving their mother. Brown bears occupy a wide range of habitats including dense forests, subalpine mountain areas, and tundra. Its range is the widest of any species of bear in the world.


BATS - Chiroptera

PLAIN-NOSED BATS - Vespertilionidae


DEER - Cervidae


SEALS & WALRUS - Pinnipedia
     RORQUALS - Balaenopteridae
     BELUGA & NARWHAL  - Monodontidae
     DOLPHINS - Delphinidae


RABBITS & HARES - Leporidae
PICAS - Ochotonidae

INSECTIVORES - Insectivora

HEDGEHOGS - Erinaceidae
SHREWS - Soricidae
MOLES - Talpidae

RODENTS - Rodentia

BEAVER - Castoridae
MICE, RATS & VOLES - Muridae
SQUIRRELS - Sciuridae
LEMMINGS - Cricetidae


RACOONS & PANDAS - Procyonidae
CATS - Felidae



World Boreal Species of Common Shrubs

SHRUBS OF THE WORLD BOREAL FORESTS - European Buckthorn (Rhamnus cathartica)

 An ornamental, spiny shrub or small tree, growing to a height of 6 m and a diameter of 10 cm.

Distinguishing Features - Leaves: opposite or clustered on short spurs 2 - 6 cm long; broadly elliptical, finely-toothed, nearly hairless, slender-stalked; colouration: green above, paler below. Bark: brown, smooth, reddish inner bark. Twigs: grayish; often in pairs and with short spurs; slender, nearlyhairless, ending in narrow pointed scaly buds or sharp spines. Flowers: 5 mm wide; bell-shaped with four spreading pointed greenish-yellow sepals; clustered on short stalks at leaf bases; male and female usually on separate plants; flowering late spring. Fruit: 8 mm in diameter; black, berrylike with bitter pulp; generally four seeds; maturing late summer and autumn. 

Habitat - Native to Europe and Asia; introduced to North America, found locally from southern Ontario east through Quebec to Nova Scotia; in dry soil conditions in sparse woods, clearings and along roadsides.

World Boreal Species of Common Herbs, Wildflowers, Grasses, Mosses, Aquatic Plants



BIRDS OF THE WORLD BOREAL FOREST Podicipediformes - Grebes Tachybaptus ruficollis - Little Grebe

The nest consists of a floating heap of water plants, either on open water or concealed in vegetation as in photo, usually anchored to vegetation such as the branch of a submerged bush, or stems of sedges, or dead tree trunk.

BIRDS OF THE WORLD BOREAL FOREST - Ardea cinerea - Grey Heron

A large grey and white heron with long legs; flies with neck pulled into s-shape and legs outstretched; forehead white; black eyebrow-stripe extends from bill to top of nape, ending in two or three long plumes; face, nape and sides of neck white; throat white with two black streaks ending at breast; back, tail and wings pale grey; shoulders, sides of breast and belly black, rest of undersides white; primaries and secondaries black underneath, inner secondaries blue-grey; bill, lores and eye dullish yellow, legs pale brown. Albino and brown/buff forms occur. Bill bright orange and legs bright pinky-red; mantle and breast with long plumes.

BIRDS OF THE WORLD BOREAL FOREST - Branta canadensis - Canada Goose  

The Canada Goose is a widely-recognized national symbol and is readily identified up close or flying swiftly in V-formation during migration. Its familiar call is a harsh, nasal Ka-ronk. The diet is varied, consisting of small aquatic life and insects to plant roots and grains.

BIRDS OF THE WORLD BOREAL FOREST - Perdix perdix - Gray Partridge

Throughout Europe into Russia and western Siberia. Introduced throughout the world and well established in the United States and parts of Canada. Prefers open areas, farmlands and brush. Also known as Gray Partridge, English Partridge, Bohemian Partridge and European Partridge.

BIRDS OF THE WORLD BOREAL FOREST - Archilochus colubris - Ruby-throated Hummingbird

The tiniest of boreal forest species, the Ruby-throated Hummingbird gets its name from the bright red throat patch and the characteristic hum of its rapidly beating wings. They sometimes feed on small insects but prefer the nectar of flowering plants or sugar water from backyard feeders.

BIRDS OF THE WORLD BOREAL FOREST - Gaviformes - Loons - Gavia stellata - Red-throated Diver

As a species, loons and divers are usually extremely awkward on land. However, red-throated divers have been known to travel long distances on shore. When seriously disturbed, they may even move cross-country to a new pool with their chicks. It is the lightest and most agile species of the genus and it has the largest wing-beat amplitude, and only the red-throated diver can take off from the ground, or land directly on it.

BIRDS OF THE WORLD BOREAL FOREST - Larus argentatus- Herring Gull

Commonly called the "Seagull", the Herring Gull is best known as a scavanger. It is most often seen in large, noisy flocks congregating where food is available, around fishing boats, picnic grounds and garbage dumps. Many people consider it a nuisance, but the Herring Gull performs a valuable service. It scavanges up great numbers of dead or injured animals and organic litter which could pose a health threat to humans. In the fields it devours large amounts of destructive pests such as grasshoppers, and mice. However, its natural diet includes aquatic life - fish, crustaceans and, sometimes, the eggs and young of other species.

BIRDS OF THE WORLD BOREAL FOREST - Porzana porzana - Spotted Crake

Crakes are skulking birds living in thick cover and flying only short distances, except when on migration. Their capability for sustained flight is shown by the Carolina crake's trans-Atlantic flights; many have been recorded in the British Isles. The spotted crake has made trips in the opposite direction, turning up in Greenland and the West Indies.


Freshwater lakes, freshwater rivers; the mute swan is the common swan in the wild, in parks or on country estates in Europe. In winter, it is more common on marine waters. It resides on waters of well-sheltered bays, open marshes, and on many ponds built by damming creeks.

BIRDS OF THE WORLD BOREAL FOREST - Aegolius funereus - Boreal Owl

As its name indicates this owl is found in northern coniferous and mixed hardwood forests. It is most common in spruce or pine woods; in southern range can be found in stands of aspen. A nocturnal hunter, it usually sits motionless in the branches of trees and bushes during the day.

BIRDS OF THE WORLD BOREAL FOREST - Pelecanus erythrorhynchos - American White Pelican

These pelicans are very fond of company, and usually stay together in large colonies to rear their young. Most of the time they can be seen together in groups on feeding trips. Both parents help in feeding the young, they do this by regurgitating food and the young stick their heads into the parents beak to feed. Adults rarely make any noise, but when they do it is usually a low grunt. However, the young feel the need to squeal, and are very noisy.

BIRDS OF THE WORLD BOREAL FOREST - Otis tarda - Great Bustard

The Great Bustard is legally protected in some European countries. Future conservation targets for the species include conducting research into limiting factors, protecting and managing breeding areas, ensuring the availability of winter habitat, upgrading existing and establishing new protected areas in east Asia, implementing agri-environment measures for low intensity farming, preventing steppe fires, preventing illegal hunting, prevent collisions with power-lines and raising public awareness.

BIRDS OF THE WORLD BOREAL FOREST - Buteo lagopus - Rough-legged Buzzard

Breeds in the arctic tundra from Alaska through Canada and into northern Scandinavia, Russia and Siberia; is seen in the northern U.S. during the winter; hunts over agricultural fields, marshes and grasslands; typically hovers while searching for prey. Nests are built of sticks on cliff ledges and when available in the tops of trees.

BIRDS OF THE WORLD BOREAL FOREST - Corvus corax - Common Raven

Completely black with purplish or violet reflections, most pronounced on back wings and tail. Male and female indistinguishable but female is slightly smaller.

BIRDS OF THE WORLD BOREAL FOREST - Fratercula arctica - Atlantic Puffin

Palearctic, Nearctic: Greenland and Northern Canada, Gulf of St. Lawrence, Nova Scotia, Iceland, Northern Scandinavia, Northern Russia; also Ireland, and NW coast of France. In summer, common puffins reside on rocky cliffs of the North Atlantic and northern Europe; in winter far at sea on deep, icy water and are seldom seen within sight of land until March. They can carry as many as 30 fish at a time in their bill.


Add comment

Fields marked by '*' are required.
Comments are moderated. If you choose to make this comment public, it will not be visible to others until it is approved by the owner.
Help for "License"
The license for this content.

Help for "Licensor"
The original licensor for this content.
Help for "Original URL"
The original URL for this content.

Reply to:

Private: This reply will only be visible to you and the author of the preceeding comment.