Hydraulic fracturing has revolutionized the natural gas industry and has become a prominent process in Western Canada. Since its introduction to Canada in 2005 no work regarding the associated microbial communities has been conducted. Microbes are introduced with the fracturing fluid during fracturing. Early flowback water has increased microbial biomass relative to the fracturing fluid. As flowback proceeds physicochemical conditions become increasingly saline and there is a rapid decrease in biomass. The microbial community changes reflect the changing conditions with a decrease in diversity and abundance. Community composition shifts accordingly from one resembling the source water to a halophilic community that is more adapted to the flowback water conditions. The lack of thermophiles indicates that temperature is the limiting factor that accounts for low amounts of biomass. This indicates that microbial activity will not negatively impact hydraulic fracturing operations.