Find out more about our Species at Risk

Cortes Island has a wealth of wildlife including a large number of species at risk – these include everything from the great blue heron to the western toad.  We want to find out more about them so we can help protect them.

If you see any of these species please contact us at the FOCI office and let us know:

  • Location, date, time
  • Name of species and # of the species observed
  • Your name and contact information
  • A photo is a bonus!

Your record will be added to our Species at Risk database. We are building up a picture of their distribution and monitoring changes over time. We also share these observations with the B.C. Conservation Data Centre. Scroll down to learn about the species at risk on Cortes!

Species at Risk

A species at risk is any naturally occurring animal and/or plant that is in danger of disappearing in the wild. Learn more about how Species at Risk are classified federally and provincially.​  …Read more…

Northern Goshawk

The Northern Goshawk is a very secretive bird. They’re hard to spot and prefer to be far from human activity. You may hear them though if you stay close to their nest while hiking … Read more…

Steller Sea Lion

Steller sea lions, also known as northern sea lions and seawolves, are the largest member of the marine mammal family called Otariidae (which means “eared seals”)...Read more…

Blue Dasher Dragonfly

These vibrant dragonflies are one of a kind – the only member of its genus and the largest member of the “skimmer” family. Found living in and around still water, ..Read more…

Western Toad

The Western Toad is frequently encountered on roads (in wet weather during spring and fall migrations), near water in breeding season (spring), and in meadows or forests  … Read more…

Northern Red-legged Frog

The Northern Red-legged Frog can be found in well-shaded, cool coastal forests. If you’re searching for one in the late winter or early spring, they’ll most likely be in forested wetlands. . .Read more…

Northern Pygmy Owl

This fearless little hunter is certainly unique to the Owl family. About the size of a fist, the Pygmy-Owl is a tiny predator that is also prey to larger predators.The Northern Pygmy-Owl’s preferred … Read more…

Big-eared Bat

The Townsend’s big-eared bat is also commonly known as the Lump-nosed bat. Their ears and their nose are two defining features that can help to identify this species. With ears half … Read more…

Threaded Vertigo

This tiny little snail can be found in moist mixed forest stands, particularly on bigleaf maple trees in the crevices of the bark. The threaded vertigo does hibernate in winter . . .Read more…

Western Screech Owl

The Western Screech Owl is nocturnal. It leaves its roost just before sunset to begin a long night of hunting, only returning home just minutes before sunrise. … Read more…

Pacific Sideband Snail

This medium-sized land snail is unique to other snails in size and features. Pacific sideband snails have evolved their mantle cavity into a lung and breathe through … Read more…

Sooty Grouse

The Sooty Grouse was thought to be the coastal subspecies of the Blue Grouse until it was discovered through DNA testing that they could be split into two subspecies, …Read more…

Barn Swallow

The Barn Swallow can usually be spotted flying and foraging over bodies of water, meadows, grasslands and farmland. They often build their nests in man-made structures such as barns..Read more…

Great Blue Heron

The species of Great Blue Heron found around Cortes is the Pacific Great Blue Heron subspecies (Ardea herodias fannini). It is one subspecies out of five that are found in North America. .Read more…

Common Nighthawk

The Common Nighthawk can be spotted at dawn or dusk as it’s quickly flying in the sky, foraging for insects. During the day they’re harder to spot due to their efficient camouflage..Read more…

Coastal Cutthrout Trout

Coastal cutthroat trout are a subspecies of the cutthroat trout. All cutthroat trout are the same genus as Pacific Salmon. They too are salmonids although … Read more…

Silver Spotted Skipper

These butterflies have been extirpated from the B.C coast for over 50 years, but one was spotted fluttering by a patch of Giant Vetch on Cortes Island. This observation changed   …Read more…

Join Friends of Cortes Island

Become a member and support the work we are doing in the community to help look after our beautiful island

Friends of Cortes Island Society (FOCI) is a charitable organization that has been active for over 25 years. Our organization exists to monitor and preserve the health of local ecosystems, and to provide educational programs that foster a greater understanding of the natural environment. Through all of our projects, we work to promote environmental integrity through community responsibility.

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