Flora and Fauna

Ketchikan is full of diverse flora and fauna that surrounds your every step! Black bears go fishing by moonlight at Herring Cove, Sitka deer graze at the cemetery, eagles and ravens fly overhead and perch in trees, and during the summer months, only a block away at the Ketchikan Creek bridge, salmon run upstream in such numbers that people joke that they can walk across their backs from one side of the creek to the other!

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Eagles flock to creeks and rivers during the summer salmon upstream runs. Crows, ravens, herons, hummingbirds, robins, thrushes, sparrows and many more birds are common year-round.

Salmon, herring and other schooling fish fill the waters around Revillagigedo Island, particularly in the summer. Though not as commonly seen, other marine mammals like seals, otters, killer whales and humpback whales have all been sighted around the area.

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Black bear, Sitka deer, mountain goats, wolf, marten, mink and river otters are all quite shy around humans but can be seen at less populated areas (click here for a list of floatplanes that can fly you to areas where bears may be more common) or even, once in a great while, in a local grocery store like Tatsuda’s IGA in the below video!

Red and yellow cedars, western hemlock and Sitka spruce comprise the bulk of the evergreen trees that played such rich historical roles for the Native people and Ketchikan’s timber industry. The lush temperate climate provides for a variety of other flora including edible and nonedible berries, beautiful flowers and plants with intriguing names like skunk cabbage and Devil’s Club.

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