08/11/2013 10:44 EDT

Animals In Alberta: Big, Bad And Beautiful Creatures Roam The Prairie Province


Travel down any given highway in Alberta on any weekend and you're sure to see tourists pressed up against the inside of their car windows, hoping to catch a glimpse of the province's wildlife.

Often, people are on the lookout for a lumbering grizzly bear, a mountain goat teetering precariously on the side of a cliff, or a elk with a massive rack grazing alongside the road.

But animal sightings in Alberta tend to be fickle. By fluke you may see five bears wandering in in one of the province's national parks or it might take you five years to spot one. Tiny creatures like the pika you may never see (or even know existed), and most hope they never come across one Alberta's prairie rattlesnakes or black widow spiders.

With four unique climatic regions - alpine, boreal forest, parkland, and prairie - and plenty of mountains, foothills, prairie and wetland to discover, Alberta is a great place for animal spotters, offering a northern safari for those with patience and a well-trained eye.

Check out some of the animals that make Alberta their home, and let us know your favourite animal sighting in the comments below.

Photo gallery These Are The Animals In Alberta See Gallery