Plants, Animals & Ecosystems
British Columbia is home to tens of thousands of plant and animal species living in a rich diversity of habitats and ecosystems. Responsible decision making and positive action on our part will help protect B.C. wildlife and their home.
Healthy ecosystems provide important “services,” like clean air and water, healthy forests and farms, and habitat for our plants and animals. British Columbia contains a diverse range of ecosystems that support thousands of individual plant and animal species.
Plants provide humans and other animals with food and shelter, cool the environment and help provide clean air and water. Fungi break down dead material, make nutrients available to other living things, and form connections with trees that help keep forests healthy.
A huge variety of fish and other aquatic animals live in B.C.’s freshwater habitats. They provide food for humans and other animals, support the economy, and are an important part of B.C.’s healthy ecosystems. Learn about fish and other aquatic animals and the habitats in which they live.
When we take care of B.C.’s wildlife and the habitats in which they live, our own health and our economy benefit, too. Learn about collecting, sharing and accessing scientific data and information about wildlife in B.C below.
Invasive species are plants or animals that are not native to the province, or are outside of their natural distribution. Invasive species negatively impact British Columbia’s environment, people and/or economy.
Exotic animals, such as alligators, monkeys and pythons, are known as controlled alien species in British Columbia. Controlled alien species are animal species that are not native to our province and are therefore not considered wildlife. The B.C. government regulates all interactions with controlled alien species to ensure public safety.
British Columbia is world-renowned for its spectacular natural heritage. The variety of plants and animals that live here provide important environmental, social, cultural, and economic benefits to the Province and its residents.