Welcome to Animals in Newfoundland and Labrador.
Newfoundland and Labrador is found in the easterly state in Canada. It is in North America, the north-eastern corner. The two are divided by the Belle Isle Strait. Newfoundland is an island in the Atlantic Ocean, and Labrador is a larger area in mainland Canada. The two are roughly triangular. Due to geography, Newfoundland and Labrador have diverse climate and weather conditions.
The best home for the native and non-native wildlife species in Newfoundland and Labrador. You are most welcome and fortunate to experience diverse animals in their natural habitat. Exploring the diverse animals in these regions is interesting and cultivates the urge to visit the sites to experience the province’s beauty.
Climate: winter and summer
Generally, the climatic conditions in North America are not extremely cold, nor are they extremely hot. Different times of the year brings in different climatic conditions. Although these two areas are in the eastern part of Canada, they are divided into two where Newfoundland is an island in the Atlantic Ocean, and Labrador is on the mainland of Canada. The weather in these two is different. They have cold climates that are not extreme and have hot and warm summers.
The island’s temperature is about 15 degrees Celsius during the summer months, while the summer months on the mainland are between 5 to 10 degrees Celsius. During winter, the climate turns to be cold and snowy. In Newfoundland, the temperatures do not go below zero, while in Labrador, it goes far below zero to a range of -7 to -40 degrees Celsius depending on the side of the mainland in Labrador. During these times in Labrador, precipitation is formed in snow.
Although the climate in Newfoundland areas is not snowy, the high precipitation in the parts of Labrador leads to some parts of the island being snowy. This is caused by the low temperatures in these neighbouring areas.
With the unique character of the ecosystem in Labrador regions, much of the province is forested. Therefore, even though the climate can be cold during winter, different animals can survive in this area. Newfoundland is an island near the Atlantic Ocean, and aquatic animals can survive here since the area is favourable. Based on the diverse tundra in the areas, many faunae can survive in these areas.
Animals found in Newfoundland and Labrador
The province’s geographical location in Canada provides a great and favourable environment for many animals. The dry and forestry Labrador and the aquatic and warm Newfoundland in the province allow crawling, flying, aquatic, and land animals to survive, making the area attractive. The animals found in these areas can be native, naturally upcoming or introduced species.
Click below to jump to any section to learn more about the animals found in Newfoundland and Labrador:
It belongs to the bear family, although it is not a bear. Being in the dear subfamily, the moose is the largest and heaviest family. It was introduced to the island in the 20th century. It has a broad palm-like skull, while other dear families have a twig-like skull configuration. The moose are hunted by humankind for food, which endangers the lives of these families, leading to their extinction. The moose are herbivores; they feed on both aquatic and terrestrial vegetations. They do not move in herds like the dear family.
Predators such as bears, humankind, wolves and other carnivores are great threats to these families. Moose are solitary animals. Only the calves remain with the mother for not more than 18 months after the birth, after which the mother chases them away. The moose have their mating season and become aggressive; the males compete for the female moose.
Moose has different names according to different nations. Moose is used in North American English, while known as an elk in British English. In North American English, an elk is a very different family of a dear from the moose family. Consequently, the word moose was developed in English in 1606 and was borrowed from the American subfamily.
Places to find Moose
The best areas to encounter the moose are the Northern peninsula, a drive along St. Johns driveway. And in the Yukon territories alongside other animals found in Newfoundland and Labrador.
American Red Squirrel
American red squirrels can be distinguished from the other north American squirrels by their size. Their size is slightly smaller; their overall length from head to the tail is approximately 27-35 cm long. Their behaviour is also different, and their red fur with a white underbelly. They are known as red squirrels in the areas where they are native.
Since their introduction in Newfoundland and Labrador, they have been widely distributed in the province. They are abundant and mostly not of concern throughout their range. They have survived in the area for decades and multiplied with time.
American red squirrels are granivores. They feed on seeds of different fruits such as strawberries but can opportunistically incorporate other types of food into their diet. White spruce seeds comprise 60% of red squirrels’ diet, but they can also feed on spruce needles, buds and mushrooms. When the spruce matures, the red squirrels harvest them, keep storage for the winter, and reproduce next spring.
American red squirrels ovulate spontaneously, whereas females only enter the estrus cycle for one day. The female leaves its territory to announce its ovulation state. During this period, the males in mating chase the female squirrel. The male mates with the female in turns, and eventually, gestation starts. These animals live in nests commonly constructed in tree branches using grass.
The red squirrels mark their territories; they can only be seen in a group during mating periods and between the mother and the offspring before dispersal when they are chased away to live independently. The juvenile red squirrels must acquire a vacant territory during their first winter for survival. They experience a severe mortality rate at early ages. However, their survival mechanism develops after attaining about three years.
Places to find American Red Squirrels
American red squirrel can be found in places like the Terra Nova National Park together with other animals found in Newfoundland and Labrador.
A Labrador Wolf looks like a mare dog; it’s a wolf; it is a subspecies of the grey wolf. Its colour range from dark grey to white. It is a naturally upcoming species. The increased population of caribou highly accelerated their settlement in this area. Nevertheless, the increase in the population of these predators did not suppress the caribou population. These species were confirmed to exist in Newfoundland in the year 2012.
The Labrador wolf is a carnivorous animal that resembles a coyote, although it has large canines, which are unique and different from a coyote. Due to its very recent existence in the areas.
Places to find Labrador Wolves
Despite little information known about the Labrador wolf, it can be found in places like the Terra Nova National Park.
Newfoundland Pine Marten
Newfoundland pine marten is a subspecies of the American marten, a distinct subspecies. It is only on the island in the province of Newfoundland and Labrador that this species is found. The COSMIC has protected these species for a long time since it was identified as the most endangered species and subject to extinction. It has been geographically and reproductively isolated from mainland marten for over 6000 years. Its physical features resemble mainland martens, although it is a bit large with dark-brown fur.
Newfoundland marten is highly populated in the west region of the island. It inhabits the most forestry area. They require a wide range of home ranges due to their large sizes more so than other marten species in the geographical area. Their behaviour pattern of habitat differs with changes in ecological mass. They are intersexually territorial; they show fidelity within the home range. They forestry habitat is due to the security they require a canopy to avoid predation.
The Newfoundland marten is a carnivore; they feed on small mammals such as meadow voles. During winter, the Newfoundland marten feeds on snowshoe hare. Hares occurs in high densities, while meadow voles occur in low densities in forests.
Newfoundland martens are entirely different from mainland martens, and their population have gradually decreased since 1800 due to over trapping. Since then, the population of the martens have gradually decreased by almost 70% to date. The species is considered endangered and protected by the species at risk act and other animal protection bodies.
Places to find Newfoundland Pine Martens
Although its endangered nature, the species can be found in the Terra Nova National Park alongside other animals found in Newfoundland and Labrador.
The red fox is the most recognised fox species; it is the largest and the most distributed species. It has increased in range with an increase with human extension. It was introduced to be harmful to the population of birds and native mammals. They exist in a group of families or pairs. The species have long been hunted as pets, thus having a very close relationship with humankind. The red fox is highly used in the fur trade industries due to its large population and widespread distribution. Due to its minimal harmful nature and less threat to humankind, it has been able to inhabit urban areas and metropolitan. In several countries, domestication of the species is underway.
Different genders have different names; the males are known as tod’s or dogs, females are referred to as vixens, and the young are known as kids. These species are known to be a more specialised form of Vulpes than other species of foxes in terms of adaptation to carnivorous nature and sizes. It is, however, not fully adapted to the predatory nature. The species is believed to have originated from Eurasians.
The red fox has a large body and short limbs, its tail is relatively halfway longer than its body size, and it is fluffy. Their pupils are morphologically oval in and vertical. They have eyelids but move only when the eyes are closed. The red fox can jump over 2.5 meters high and swim excellently. The female has four mammary glands in 4 pairs, although others with more pairs are also common.
In the genius vulpes, the red foxes are the largest species. However, based on the weight, the red foxes are much lighter compared with other species of much smaller sizes. Their skull size varies with gender and age. During normal pace, the strides are above 25 to 35 cm. they have eyesight as a sense which only acts on movements. They can locate sounds up to a certain degree.
Red foxes can occupy any geographical area and settle and move from one place to another. They also mark their territories using their urine. While urinating, the male fox raises its leg, and the urine splashes in front of him while the female squats to ensure the urine splashes at the back. They have different urinating postures to control the marking of their territories. The red fox families live in groups to identify a territory. Vixens guard, groom, and protect their kids; they can live with them until adulthood.
Red foxes reproduce once yearly; by the time the vixens reach their estrous period, the shape of their reproductive organ changes in shape. This period lasts for three weeks where the dog fox mates with the vixen severally. The foxes are known to be polygamous. Most red foxes like to live in the open, although they might find shelter during bad weather in the caves. They dig these burrows mostly in the mountains. They can also dig dens in the tree roots, which can last for decades. In the occurrence of any skin disease, the red foxes can abandon their dens permanently.
Red foxes’ language is mostly through body language. It can use the eyes, ears, body postures and the tail. The body posture could be submissive and calm, aggressive and violent and can also be fearful. Submissive foxes will approach a dominant fox in a low body posture. When fighting, two equal foxes will approach each other with aggression and fierceness.
Red foxes are omnivores; they feed both on plants and flesh; they prefer to hunt during the early morning hours and late in the evening. They are very possessive of the food they hunt; they can protect their harvest even from dominant animals. Red foxes are believed to dislike the smell of moles; they, however, hunt the alive for their kits to play with them.
These red fox species are very dominant over other fox species. They compete with corsac foxes for food. They harvest the same prey throughout the year. This species is also stronger and can dig deep in the snow for food. The corsac can only outshine them in dry areas. The red fox will kill species for dens and food. Despite the strong red foxes, they are hunted and killed by the wolves for food.
Places to find Red Foxes
Red fox can be located in places such as the Salmonier National Park.
Little Brown Bat
The little brown bat is one of the native animals found in the Newfoundland and Labrador province. Bats are challenging to study since they are always on the move and are mostly found at night. The brown bat can be located with the help of an electronic instrument referred to as a bat detector. This instrument helps humans to detect the sounds made by the flying bat.
In the Newfoundland’s, the little brown bat is found in places where there are houses, caves or trees. At different times, bats have different shelters. During the summer, they will rest in trees and buildings, while during winter, due to the cols and frost, they will look for places where they can hibernate, such as caves, tunnels and vacant buildings.
The little brown bat feeds on insects; it can catch so many insects in very little time. They hunt before sunrise and after sunset. They eat insects and acquire a lot of fats in their bodies to help them survive the winter seasons. They have habitat threats since only a few trees and caves are available.
The little brown bats can live up to a period of 10 years. Their appearance can vary from pale to reddish-brown. They have an approximate length of about 9cm from head to tail.
Summary in Animals in Newfoundland and Labrador
Animals in Newfoundland and Labrador are abundant. This list sought to investigate only a few animals found in Newfoundland and Labrador. The habitats and feeding habits of the Moose, American Red Squirrel, Labrador Wolf, Newfoundland Pine Marten, Red Fox and Little Brown Bat have been discussed in detail above.