Numerous species of wildlife and vegetation are found in the watershed of Lake Te Anau. Vegetative understory includes numerous fern species including the Crown Fern, Blechnum discolor. Several species of endangered birds live around the shores of Lake Te Anau, notably the Takahē (Notornis hochstetteri). An area between the Middle and South Fiords called the Murchison Mountains (seen on the left) is a sanctuary set aside for these birds. The western shore of the lake also features the Te Ana-au Caves, from which the lake derives its name.