Hundreds of different animals are native to Nova Scotia including mammals, birds, reptiles, amphibians and fish. If you wish to manage for wildlife on your woodlot, you can choose to manage for many animals, specific animals or both. Whatever you decide, you will require a basic knowledge of the animals' needs including:

  • habitat requirements
  • food
  • sensitivity to change

When planning for wildlife habitat and food requirements, you may want to consider:

  • modifying harvest activities to minimize impact on wildlife
  • creating edges through forestry practices - uneven borders produce more edge, which provide many animals with food and shelter, than regular shapes such as circles or squares
  • providing for current and future snags and cavity trees- about 25% of all species use dead and old trees for shelter, roosting, feeding, hibernating or nesting (includes owls, chickadees, woodpeckers, kestrels, squirrels, raccoons and porcupines)
  • managing alder thickets, favoured by grouse, woodcock and songbirds
  • locating and identifying large nest trees and avoid activities around nests during breeding season
  • planting and improving apple trees and trees that produce seeds and nuts
  • maintaining stands of aspen (poplar) trees
  • constructing nest boxes
  • special attention to land along waterways

For more information, contact the NS Department of Natural Resources Wildlife Division (902-679-6091) or a nature organization.


Wildlife of Nova Scotia - Online
- Julie Towers
Also available in bookstores

Birds of Nova Scotia - Online
-Robie Tufts
Also available in bookstores

Nova Scotia Museum Books

  • Animal Signatures
    Edward Claridge & Betty Ann Milligan
    Field guide teaches how to recognize and interpret animal signs: tracks, droppings, nibbled twigs. $6.95
  • The Natural History of Nova Scotia
    Volume 1 – Topics & Habitats
    Habitats include major ecological environments that provide homes for many species of plants and animals. $35.00

Significant species and habitats database NS
- Online

Butterflies North & South
- Online
Virtual Museum Canada

Nature of Nova Scotia
- Online
Nova Scotia Museum of Natural History

Guide to identification and information about poisonous plants in Nova Scotia
- Online

"Thousand Eyes" - Watching Nova Scotia Nature Project
- Online
Environment Canada

Bird Monitoring in North America

Contractors & Operators
Best Management Practices Manuals
Nova Forest Alliance

Nest Box Construction
- Online
Canadian Wildlife Federation

Cavity Trees are Refuges for Wildlife

Project FeederWatch
Bird Studies Canada

Ecology of the Ruffed Grouse

Ducks at a Distance Identification Guide - Online

Options for Controlling Beaver

NS Department of Natural Resources Wildlife Habitat and Watercourses Protection Regulations
- Online

NS Department of Natural Resources - Wildlife Division

NSDNR 'Conservation Magazine' Articles

NSDNR Woodlot Management Home Study Program
- Online or Mail
Module – Principles of Forest Stewardship
Module 4 - Wildlife & Forestry