Washington Wildlife

Washington has a tremendous diversity of ecosystems, including prairies, wetlands, estuaries, rainforests, shrubsteppe, marine waters, and grasslands.

Washington has nine district ecoregions, but the most densely populated is the Puget Trough. Only comprising 8% of Washington, it is rich in natural resources and home to nearly 3/4s of the population. The opportunity for human-wildlife conflict is high in this region.

Washington is home to two ecosystems found nowhere else in the world: the Olympic rainforest and the channeled scablands of the Columbia Plateau.

The varied ecosystems provide habitats for a wide range of animal species. 140 mammals, 470 freshwater and marine fishes, 341 birds, 25 amphibians, 21 reptiles (source)

Nuisance Wildlife by Season

Different times of years will impact potential nuisance wildlife. Hibernation, migration, and maternity seasons all impact animal behavior.

Year-Round Nuisance Wildlife in Washington

Some animals never take a break. These wild animals could enter your Washington home at any time of year:

  • Raccoons
  • Squirrels
  • Rats & Mice
  • Flying Squirrels
  • Beavers
  • Crows
  • Weasels

 

Winter

  • Crows
  • Mice
  • Douglas Squirrels
  • Eastern Grey Squirrel
  • Long Tail Weasel
  • Mountain Beavers
  • Norway Rats
  • Opossums
  • Pigeons
  • Raccoons
  • Rabbits
  • Otters
  • Roof Rats
  • Voles

Spring

  • Beavers
  • Crows
  • Mice
  • Douglas Squirrels
  • Eastern Gray Squirrel
  • Gulls
  • Long Tailed Weasel
  • Mountain Beavers
  • Muskrats
  • Northern Flicker Woodpecker
  • Northern Flying Squirrel
  • Norway Rats
  • Nutria
  • Opossums,
  • Pigeons
  • Raccoons
  • Rabbits
  • River Otter
  • Roof Rat
  • Skunks
  • Sparrow
  • Starling
  • Swallows
  • Townsend Chipmunks
  • Voles

Summer

  • Beavers
  • Crows
  • Mice
  • Douglas Squirrel
  • Bats
  • Eastern Gray Squirrel
  • Gulls
  • Long Tailed Weasel
  • Mountain Beavers
  • Muskrats
  • Northern Flicker Woodpecker
  • Northern Flying Squirrel
  • Norway Rats
  • Nutria
  • Opossums
  • Pigeons
  • Raccoons
  • Rabbits
  • River Otter
  • Roof Rat
  • Skunks
  • Snakes
  • Sparrow
  • Starlings
  • Swallows
  • Townsend Chipmunks
  • Voles

Autumn

  • Crows
  • Mice
  • Douglas Squirrels
  • Eastern Gray Squirrel
  • Long Tailed Weasel
  • Mountain Beavers
  • Northern Flicker Woodpecker
  • Northern Flying Squirrel
  • Norway Rats
  • Opossum
  • Pigeons
  • Raccoons
  • River Otter
  • Norwary
  • Roof rats

Washington Wildlife Regulations

Before attempting to remove wildlife from your home become familiar with state and local regulations. Different animals have different legal classifications which determine lawful wildlife control methods.

Generally, if an animal poses a direct threat to people or property, the animal can be removed. You must also consider what to do with a trapped wild animal. In the State of Washington, it is unlawful to possess or transport live wildlife or wild birds (except starlings and house sparrows by falconers) without a permit (WAC 220-450-030). This includes Eastern gray squirrels, Eastern cottontail rabbits, raccoons, and opossums. They are considered wildlife because they occur in Washington in a wild state—which includes neighborhood parks and backyards.

According to the state of Washington, the appropriate times to trap an animal in or around a home or property include emergency situations, the removal of a targeted problem animal, or when trapping is the only practical solution.

At Trutech Wildlife Service, we’re aware of all the regulations and permits required to lawfully remove any wildlife.

Not only that, but we humanely and ethically trap and remove wild animal. We never trap an adult animal that is caring for dependent offspring. Look and listen for young—even outside the animal's known birthing season.

Some Pertinent Wildlife Regulations:

Trapping activity by an individual in a nuisance wildlife situation must comply, where applicable, with the requirements under WAC 220-417-030 and adhere to RCW 77.36.030 & 77.15.190.

In the State of Washington, it is unlawful to possess or transport live wildlife or wild birds (except starlings and house sparrows by falconers) without a permit (WAC 220-450-030). This includes Eastern gray squirrels, Eastern cottontail rabbits, raccoons, and opossums. They are considered wildlife because they occur in Washington in a wild state—which includes neighborhood parks and backyards.

A special trapping permit is required for the use of all traps other than live traps (RCW 77.15.19277.15.194WAC 232-12-142).

All species of bats are classified as protected wildlife and cannot be hunted, trapped, or killed (WAC 220-200-100). The Department of Fish and Wildlife makes exceptions for bats found in or immediately adjacent to a dwelling or other occupied building. In such cases, these animals may legally be removed and no permit is necessary (WAC 220-200-100).

Washington CITIES SERVED

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