Sanctuary Species

The following species live in Northern Virginia at various times of year and can be found in developed areas. Some are year-round residents while others stay for a season or pass through the area on their way to other destinations.  Some of these species need our help now, like eastern box turtles, while others may soon need help in light of continued development. Whether you live on a 10 acre property or have an apartment balcony, you can help many of these species to succeed in Northern Virginia. 

To find out more about each species and what you can do to help, click on their pictures to link to information on the species/species group including help with identification, habitat preferences, range, migration and, for frogs, toads and birds, recordings of their voices.

Download a list of sanctuary species.



Butterflies & Moths

Other Invertebrates



In developing this list of sanctuary species, ASNV considered the following species criteria.

Our selected sanctuary species:

  • breed in Northern Virginia;

  • have a reasonable chance of being found on and/or attracted to a suburban property;

  • are considered a beneficial and/or desirable species;

  • are a population in decline OR at risk of being in decline (in the Northern VA area) due to typical suburban land use issues, e.g. pesticides, habitat destruction, etc.

More Northern Virginia Wildlife

Of course Northern Virginia has many more species than those on our Sanctuary list.  See our Northern Virginia Wildlife Checklist and learn more about them through, Bird Walks and Field Trips,  Events and Classes and Wildlife Counts and Surveys