The East Kootenay Region has the unique distinction of being one of the highest capability areas to support wildlife in North America. Ten big game species are found within its 26,000 square kilometer area. The total big game population exceeds 100,000 animals yielding densities of approximately four animals per square kilometer. Big game found in the Region include white tail and mule deer, elk, moose, mountain goat, big horn sheep, black and grizzly bear and cougar.
The abundance of streams and lakes in the East Kootenay support sport fisheries and serve as important spawning and rearing areas for a variety of species. Bull, Rainbow, Cut-throat, Eastern Brook trout, Bass Mountain Whitefish and Kokanee make up the majority of catches in the Kootenay River and its tributaries. In addition, many lakes are stocked with fish from the Provincial hatchery near Wardner.