Most of the animals in this biome are mammals, such as moose, snowshoe hares, arctic fox, arctic wolves, squirrels, ermines, elk, deer, wolverines, moles, lynxes, and grizzly bears. There are birds, such as eagles, owls, peregrine falcons, snowy owls, and snow geese, and insects, such as mosquitoes, and ants.
Animals need to survive in the Taiga. Their adaptations help them stay warm, hide, and defend themselves. In the harsh winter months, many animals have thick coats to keep them warm. For example, the Siberian Tiger has a thick coat, long legs, and large paws. Its long legs help the tiger to walk through deep snow. Its large paws act like snowshoes. To escape the cold weather, some species of birds migrate to warmer areas during the winter months. The grizzly bear eats lots of food to gain fat that helps to keep it warm. Then it sleeps through the winter. It isn't actually hibernation, it is just a deep sleep.
Some animals in the Taiga have adaptations for defense. The porcupine has quills that it uses to keep predators at bay. If a predator tries to kill the porcupine anyway, it will get the quills stuck in its body. Some animals have adaptations that camouflage them. Animals like the snowshoe hare turn brown in the summer and turn white in the winter.
A Food Web
The trees in the Taiga are mainly spruce, pine, and fir. The plants adapt to harsh weather in this environment, like icy and snowy winters. For example, the needles of the pine are very smooth to help keep water inside the dark casing. The spruce's cone like shape allows them to shed ice and sleet more efficiently. Berry bushes that thrive in this biome are blueberry, bilberry, and cowberry. Berry bushes are a vital food source for mammals, birds and some types of insects. Not very common trees that grow in the Taiga are birch, oak, willow, and alder. They live in particularly wet or disturbed areas.