The Northeast Coast and the Yilan Coastline National Scenic Area receives abundant rainfall. With the ecology generally undisturbed, in addition to rich flora, this area is also well-suited for animal inhabitation and breeding. The hillstream loach, the leopard cat, the hydrothermal vent crab Xenograpsus testudinatus, and other various rare species are all commonly seen here.
Commonly seen mammals and reptiles include the wild boar, wild rabbit and Formosan gem-faced civet.
The Idea leuconoe clara, Talbotia naganum karumii, antlion and Brachytrupes portentosus (Taiwan giant cricket) are distinguishing species commonly seen here.
There is also abundance in both the numbers and species of wild birds, including 149 bird species and 39 bird families. Besides land birds, there are also waders of the Scolopacidae family, terns, seagulls and other sea birds. Eagles, common kestrels, crested goshawks, crested serpent eagles, ospreys, and other birds of prey are also features of this area.
The Northeast coast and Yilan coastline also offers a rich underwater ecosystem. Between Bitou Cape and Longdong Cape, visitors will find a stretch of colorful and diverse corals. There are also surfperches (family Embiotocidae), the Bombay duck (family Harpodontidae), species of the families Chaetodontidae, Acanthurus, and Apogonidae, barrier reef fishes, sea urchins, sea cucumbers, shellfishes, sea snails, and sea stars.
Influenced by the tide, animals that live at the intersection of land and ocean usually develop unique characteristics that add to the richness of the ecological scenery. According to investigation, there are more than 60 species of large algae, around 290 species of shellfish, 70 or more species of crustaceans, almost 40 species of Echinodermata, and almost 100 species of sponges, sea anemones, organisms of the class Polychaeta, sea squirts, and other shore animals.
During summer and autumn, many cetaceans, such as the bottle nose dolphin, Risso’s dolphin, and the spinner dolphin can be seen within the waters surrounding Turtle Island and Nanfangao. This is a great area to take a ride on a cruiser or hop onto a fishing boat and go whale-watching or dolphin-watching. Together with the unique geology of Turtle Island and the underwater volcanic scenery, the combination of whale-watching, geological features and underwater volcanoes has allowed this area to become Taiwan’s distinguished recreational and intellectual tourism area.
The Northeast Coast National Scenic Area is surrounded by the waters of the East China Sea Continental Shelf in the north and the Kuroshio Current in the west. Besides coastal dwelling fish such as members of the families Sparidae (breams), Percidae (perches), Sciaenidae (croaches) , etc., migratory fish such as the mackerel, bonito, Spanish mackerel, swordfish and tuna also appear annually. The rich variety of fish has transformed this area into a crucial fishing ground of Taiwan’s northeast. The fishing economy and fishing village culture of this area are extremely active, presenting a multi-dimensional tourism resource consisting of fishing village life, fish ecology and fish products.
The Northeast Coast and Yilan coastline are distinctly influenced by the Northeast Monsoon. Fortunately, rain carried ashore by air currents from the ocean assists the vegetation growing within the area to evade the aridity of winter, allowing a rich vegetation to thrive.
Beginning from the coastline and moving inland, the land is divide into a coastal vegetative zone and a hillside vegetative zone. Each zone then expresses different species and numbers of plants according to local ecological conditions.