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Location Canada, Nova Scotia
Central coordinates 66o 22.17' West  44o 13.86' North
IBA criteria A4iii
Area 96,000 ha
Altitude 0 - 30m
Year of IBA assessment 2008

Bird Studies Canada/Nature Canada

Site description Brier Island is located at the extreme western end of Nova Scotia, and is about 50 km southwest of the town of Digby. The site includes Brier Island plus tiny Peter Island and the surrounding marine waters for at least 15 km offshore. Brier Island is 7 km by 3 km in size, and is separated from the neighbouring Long Island by the 1 km-wide Grand Passage. Most of the island is forested except for the village of Westport and the fields surrounding it. Two parallel ridges run across the island, with lowlands such as bogs and ponds, in-between. The waters of the Bay of Fundy surrounding Brier Island are rich and diverse in marine life. Right, Humpback, Fin and Minke whales, and White-sided Dolphin occur here.

Populations of IBA trigger species

Species Season Period Population estimate Quality of estimate IBA Criteria IUCN Category
A4iii Species group - waterbirds passage  20,000-49,999 individuals  unknown  A4iii   

Protected areas

Protected area Designation Area (ha) Relationship with IBA Overlap with IBA (ha)  
Briar Island Nature Conservancy Nature Conservancy of Canada Lands 377 protected area contained by site 380  
Central Grove Provincial Park 12 protected area contained by site 13  
Gull Rock Road Brier Island Nature Conservancy of Canada Lands 9 protected area contained by site 10  
Peajack Road Brier Island Nature Conservancy of Canada Lands 392 protected area contained by site 410  
Ventral Bog Sites of Ecological Interest 24 protected area contained by site 25  


IUCN habitat Habitat detail Extent (% of site)
Forest Temperate mixed woods  30%
Shrubland Scrub  10%
Sea Open sea; Sea inlets  50%
Coastline Sea cliffs and rocky shores  10%

Land use

Land-use Extent (% of site)
nature conservation and research minor
fisheries/aquaculture major
tourism/recreation minor

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Recommended citation  BirdLife International (2014) Important Bird Areas factsheet: Brier Island and Offshore Waters. Downloaded from on 02/10/2014

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