Canada is a mosaic of natural regions, or ecozones, distinguished by their iconic features: the rain forest of the Pacific Coast, the flat-to-rolling horizon of the prairie, the evergreen wilderness of the Canadian Shield, and the polar barrens of the Arctic.
Resource-rich and breathtakingly beautiful, the Pacific and Western Mountains region is made up of four land ecozones: the Pacific Maritime coastal strip of mountain, rain forest, and fjord; and the three rugged Cordilleran zones: Montane Cordillera, Boreal Cordillera, and Taiga Cordillera. A fifth ecozone — the Pacific Marine — encompasses Canada’s waters of the Pacific Ocean. The land zones comprise British Columbia and the Yukon Territory, but also include parts of Alberta and the Northwest Territories. Blessed with a diverse wildlife and vegetation, parts of this natural region — particularly the Pacific Maritime ecozone — are under pressure from rapid population growth, urban development, and resource exploitation.
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