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Location Canada, Ontario
Central coordinates 79o 19.48' West  43o 38.51' North
IBA criteria A4i, A4iii
Area 700 ha
Year of IBA assessment 2008

Bird Studies Canada/Nature Canada

Site description The Leslie Street Spit extends from the Toronto shoreline about 5 km southwest into Lake Ontario. It is located immediately to the east of the Toronto Islands and Harbour. It is a human-made feature that includes both Tommy Thompson Park and the Endikement Area. Tommy Thompson Park consists of a main road and four peninsulas that were constructed from dredge spoil between 1972 and 1975. Construction of the Endikement Area began in 1980 and is continuing. The three cells, which are closed to the public, store contaminated dredge from the Toronto Inner Harbour. Much of Tommy Thompson is now covered with dense thickets of cottonwoods and willows that support an impressive number of Black-crowned Night Heron nests.

Populations of IBA trigger species

Species Season Period Population estimate Quality of estimate IBA Criteria IUCN Category
Ring-billed Gull Larus delawarensis breeding  1986  55,000 breeding pairs  A4i  Least Concern 
A4iii Species group - waterbirds breeding  1984  50,000-99,999 breeding pairs  unknown  A4iii   


IUCN habitat Habitat detail Extent (% of site)
Forest Temperate deciduous woods  5%
Shrubland Scrub  8%
Wetlands (inland) Freshwater lakes and pools; Freshwater marshes/swamps; Intertidal mud, sand or salt flats  32%
Coastline Rocky flats & barrens  16%
Artificial - terrestrial Urban parks and gardens  19%
Other   20%

Land use

Land-use Extent (% of site)
nature conservation and research major
tourism/recreation major
urban/industrial/transport major

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Recommended citation  BirdLife International (2014) Important Bird Areas factsheet: Leslie Street Spit. Downloaded from on 24/10/2014

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