Migratory Bird Sanctuaries

Western Sandpipers
Photo: Tom Middleton © Environment Canada
Western Sandpipers
Sandhill Crane

Photo: Lise Pirie © Environment Canada
Sandhill Crane

The first Migratory Bird Sanctuaries designated under the Migratory Birds Convention Act were the Bird Rocks and Bonaventure Island & Percé Rock sanctuaries, established in 1919, in Quebec. However, the first protected area established for the conservation of migratory birds in Canada was Last Mountain Lake in 1887, in southern Saskatchewan, a refuge for birds that later became a Migratory Bird Sanctuary (in 1921) as well as a National Wildlife Area (in 1994).

Burrowing Owl

Photo: Christian Artuso © Environment Canada
Burrowing Owl

At present, there are 92 Migratory Bird Sanctuaries across Canada, comprising almost 11.5 million hectares of migratory bird habitat that provides safe refuge for migratory birds in the terrestrial and marine environment. The Canadian Wildlife Service of Environment Canada is the agency responsible for Migratory Bird Sanctuaries, although the sanctuaries can be located on federal, provincial or private land.

Migratory Bird Sanctuaries are listed under the Schedule in the Migratory Bird Sanctuary Regulations, which prescribe rules and prohibitions regarding the taking, injuring, destruction or molestation of migratory birds or their nests or eggs in the sanctuaries. Hunting of listed species under the Act is not permitted in any Migratory Bird Sanctuary.

For more information on the designation and management of Migratory Bird Sanctuaries, consult the Selection Criteria and Management and Activities sections. For legislation and policies, consult the Reference Documents section.

Migratory Bird Sanctuaries by province

Migratory Bird Sanctuaries

Richardson Lake MBS

Photo: © Environment Cananda
Richardson Lake MBS

Alberta
NameYear establishedSize in hectares
Inglewood MBS1968111
Red Deer MBS1924129
Richardson Lake MBS194910,798
Saskatoon Lake MBS19481,150

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Vaseux Lake MBS

Photo: Steve Cannings © Environment Cananda
Vaseux Lake MBS

British Columbia
NameYear establishedSize in hectares
Christie Islet MBS19621
Victoria Harbour MBS19311,841
George C. Reifel MBS1967376
Nechako River MBS1944183
Shoal Harbour MBS1931143
Vaseux Lake MBS1923353
Esquimalt Lagoon MBS1923134

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Machias Seal Island MBS

Photo: © Environment Canada
Machias Seal Island MBS

New Brunswick
NameYear establishedSize in hectares
Grand Manan MBS1931433
Inkerman MBS199816
Machias Seal Island MBS19441,046

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Common Goldeneye

Photo: © Thinkstock - iStockphoto
Common Goldeneye

Newfoundland and Labrador
NameYear establishedSize in hectares
Shepherd Island MBS1991162
Île aux Canes MBS199118
Terra Nova MBS19671,178

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Anderson River Delta MBS

Photo: Bob Bromley © Enviornment Canada
Anderson River Delta MBS

Northwest Territories
NameYear establishedSize in hectares
Anderson River Delta MBS1961118,417
Banks Island No. 1 MBS19612,019,997
Banks Island No. 2 MBS196114,302
Cape Parry MBS1961227
Kendall Island MBS196161,241

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Amherst Point MBS

Photo: Julie Paquet © Environment Canada
Amherst Point MBS

Nova Scotia
NameYear establishedSize in hectares
Amherst Point MBS1947432
Big Glace Bay Lake MBS1939393
Port Hebert MBS198095
Kentville MBS1939506
Port Joli MBS1941346
Sable River MBS1941397
Sable Island MBS19773,100
Haley Lake MBS1941313

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Bylot Island MBS

Photo: Josée Lefebvre © Enviornment Canada
Bylot Island MBS

Nunavut
NameYear establishedSize in hectares
Akimiski Island MBS1941353,421
Bylot Island MBS19651,282,731
Boatswain Bay MBS19416,736
Dewey Soper MBS1957816,599
East Bay MBS1959112,811
Hannah Bay MBS19396,099
Harry Gibbons MBS1959143,811
McConnell River MBS196036,803
Prince Leopold Island MBS199230,399
Queen Maud Gulf MBS19616,292,818
Seymour Island MBS19755,302

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Beckett Creek MBS

Photo: © Environment Cananda
Beckett Creek MBS

Ontario
NameYear establishedSize in hectares
Beckett Creek MBS1969179
Chantry Island MBS195764
Eleanor Island MBS19710.78
Hannah Bay MBS193919,119
Mississippi Lake MBS1959300
Moose River MBS19582,690
Rideau MBS1957754
St. Joseph's Island MBS1951891
Upper Canada MBS19612,572

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Black Pond MBS

Photo: Colin MacKinnon © Environment Canada
Black Pond MBS

Prince Edward Island
NameYear establishedSize in hectares
Black Pond MBS1936130

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Botswain Bay MBS

Photo: © Environment Cananda
Botswain Bay MBS

Quebec
NameYear establishedSize in hectares
Brador Bay MBS1925561
Baie des Loups MBS19253,873
Betchouane MBS1925435
Boatswain Bay MBS19419,616
Cap-Saint-Ignace MBS1972130
Gros Mécatina MBS19962,189
Île à la Brume MBS19253,779
Île aux Basques MBS1927855
Île aux Hérons MBS1937623
Bonaventure Island and Percé Rock MBS19191,299
Carillon Island MBS1937465
Couvée Islands MBS198615
Corossol Island MBS1937367
Philipsburg MBS1972757
Îles Sainte-Marie MBS19254,004
L'Islet MBS198659
L'Isle-Verte MBS1986258
Montmagny MBS1986122
Mont Saint-Hilaire MBS19601,006
Nicolet MBS19823,009
Îles de la Paix MBS1955543
Bird Rocks MBS1919649
Saint-Augustin MBS19254,933
Saint-Omer MBS198665
Saint-Vallier MBS1986363
Senneville MBS1936570
Trois-Saumons MBS1986224
Watshishou MBS192511,778

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Last Mountain Lake MBS

Photo: Kemper © Environment Cananda
Last Mountain Lake MBS

Saskatchewan
NameYear establishedSize in hectares
Basin and Middle Lakes MBS19254,638
Duncairn Reservoir MBS19481,615
Indian Head MBS192432
Last Mountain Lake MBS18874,843
Lenore Lake MBS19257,481
Murray Lake MBS19481,589
Neely Lake MBS1952346
Old Wives Lake MBS192532,391
Opuntia Lake MBS19521,391
Redberry Lake MBS19255,271
Scent Grass Lake MBS1948647
Sutherland MBS1924130
Upper Rousay Lake MBS1948364
Val Marie Reservoir MBS1948431
Wascana Lake MBS1956117

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