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FUN FACT: A tiny Lake Muskoka island is a designated National Wildlife Area

October 1, 2019

 

 

Muskoka Post Staff
 

The Eleanor Island Migratory Bird Sanctuary (MBS) is located north of Gravenhurst, Ontario. It allows colonial water birds to nest and rest.


The Eleanor Island Migratory Bird Sanctuary covers a small, rocky island located in the lower section of Lake Muskoka, about 1.6 kilometres from the mainland. The island is owned and also managed by Environment and Climate Change Canada as a National Wildlife Area. This bird sanctuary is known to support one of the few gull and heron colonies in the area.


In 1970, it was reported that the sanctuary contained between 20 to 30 nesting pairs of great blue herons and approximately 300 pairs of nesting gulls, mainly ring-billed gulls as well as some herring gulls.


In 1983, 23 great blue heron nests were observed along with 30 great blue herons.
 

Then in 2009, 238 double-crested cormorant nests and 30 great blue heron nests were found in the trees, while 266 herring gull nests were located on the ground. 


Eleanor Island was established to protect migratory birds during critical periods of their life cycle. Whether these areas are used for feeding, resting or nesting, they play an important role in the survival of many species. Public access to Eleanor Island Migratory Bird Sanctuary is prohibited. 


Eleanor Island is also a designated National Wildlife Area and according to the legislation, Environment and Climate Change Canada can prohibit all activities in such area that could interfere with the conservation of wildlife.


For more information on Eleanor Island Migratory Bird Sanctuary in particular, please contact ec.enviroinfo.ec@canada.ca.
With files from the Government of Canada 🇨🇦 

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