5. Feb 2023 | Nature

Hokkaido Trivia – Winter Animals That You Can See in Hokkaido

In Hokkaido you’ll come across quite a number of wild animals and birds throughout the island.  In eastern Hokkaido where I am, we see many foxes, deer, squirrels and many more even in winter time.  Here are just some that I see often in Abashiri.

Red Fox: I also see them quite often walking along the railway tracks from my kitchen window. Once in a while we see a fox on drift ice.  He must have come up on the ice at the shore looking for fish that birds left behind.  Even if you don’t catch him wandering around, you’ll find his foot steps on snow covered fields!

Eurasian Red Squirrels: Unlike the Siberian chipmunks, the red squirrels don’t hibernate and so they can be seen running around, especially in parks with lots of trees.

Sika Deer: Another animal that you can see at nearby fields and roads, even in your garden (if you live near a woody place).  Sika deer used to be one of the critically endangered species, but the protection that was taken towards them increased their number drastically.

And of course,

Steller’s Sea Eagle and the White Tail Eagle: These 2 birds, the largest birds of prey in Japan, are winter birds that are only seen in Hokkaido.  I see them very often at nearby lakes, oceans and woods.  They’re pretty easy to find if you have the patience.

I hope you have the chance to see these wild animals during your stay in Hokkaido!