Saint-Vallier Migratory Bird Sanctuary

Importance of the Migratory Bird Sanctuary | Access and Activities | Map of the Area | Summary Table | Contact Information

Photo of Greater Snow Geese
Photo: © Fabrice Kerleau. Greater Snow Geese.

The Saint-Vallier Migratory Bird Sanctuary (MBS) is located on the south shore of the St. Lawrence Estuary, near the municipality of Saint-Vallier. The sanctuary encompasses a small bay called Anse de Saint-Vallier and the entire site is covered by water at high tide.

This 356 hectare sanctuary was established in 1986 to protect an important staging area for migrating Greater Snow Geese, Canada Geese, and for a variety of dabbling and diving ducks, as well as a large number of shorebirds.

The majority of the sanctuary consists of mud and rocky outcrops. The rest of the sanctuary is covered by a herbaceous meadow of American Bulrush, accompanied by the following species: Wild Rice, Grassleaf Arrowhead, Erect Arrowhead, Northern Arrowhead, Water-parsnip, Common Boneset, Rice Cutgrass, Tufted Hairgrass and Spike Rush sp. Certain species, like Great Bulrush, Giant Bur-reed, Prairie Cordgrass, Joe-pye Weed, Purple Loosestrife, Northern Manna Grass, Common Reed and some species of sedge have been observed at the southern edge of the sanctuary.

Importance of the Migratory Bird Sanctuary

Large numbers of Greater Snow Geese visit the MBS; 60 000 of these birds have been recorded in the sanctuary.

During the fall season, over 5000 Canada Geese, several thousand dabbling ducks (including American Black Duck) and diving ducks (including certain species of mergansers and scaups) have been recorded.

The MBS is also home to a large number of shorebirds in the spring and fall. It is actually listed as one of the most important sites in Quebec for this group of birds. Semipalmated Sandpipers, Dunlins and Least Sandpipers are among the most common species in the site, with numbers ranging from several hundred to several thousand birds, depending on circumstances. The Killdeer, Herring Gull, Spotted Sandpiper, Lesser Yellowlegs, Greater Yellowlegs and White-rumped Sandpiper have also been observed in the sanctuary.

Access and Activities

MBSs are established for the protection and conservation of migratory birds. Activities that could harm migratory birds, their nests or their eggs are prohibited.

MBSs can be and have been established on private, provincial, territorial and federally owned lands. Access to each MBS varies by site and is at the discretion of the landowner and land manager.

Where MBSs are located on federal land, Environment and Climate Change Canada is responsible for the management and protection of migratory birds, nests, eggs and habitat. Where MBSs are located on provincial land, Environment and Climate Change Canada is responsible for the protection of migratory birds and their nests, while the chief game officer of the province is responsible for the management of habitat. Where MBSs are located on private or municipal land, Environment and Climate Change Canada is responsible for the protection of migratory birds and their nests. Habitat management is the responsibility of the landowner.

The standard prohibitions under the Migratory Bird Sanctuary Regulationsapply to Saint-Vallier MBS: hunting migratory birds is prohibited, and no person shall disturb, destroy or take the nest of a migratory bird or have in his or her possession a live migratory bird, or a carcass, skin, nest or egg of a migratory bird, except under the authority of a permit issued by Environment and Climate Change Canada or unless specifically authorized by the Regulations. Possession of firearms or other hunting appliances is prohibited, and dogs and cats must not be allowed to run at large.

Access denial or restrictions imposed by the owners of land within the MBS may also apply.

For more information on entry, activities and permits in MBSs, please visit the Management and Activities section of the Migratory Bird Sanctuaries website. For more information on protected areas managed by Environment and Climate Change Canada in Quebec, please contact the regional office.

For greater certainty, nothing in this document shall be construed so as to abrogate or derogate from the protection provided for existing Aboriginal or treaty rights of the Aboriginal peoples of Canada by the recognition and affirmation of those rights in section 35 of the Constitution Act, 1982.

Map of the Area

Long description for the Map

Map showing the location of Saint-Vallier Migratory Bird Sanctuary relative to Quebec, Saint-Vallier, Anse de Saint-Vallier and the St. Lawrence River. The map shows the boundaries of the sanctuary, which covers a large portion of Anse de Saint-Valllier. The scale of the map is in tenths of a kilometer.

This map is for illustrative purposes only and should not be used to define legal boundaries. Saint-Vallier Migratory Bird Sanctuary can also be viewed using Google Maps. Please note that the Google map is a complementary source of information and does not represent the official map or site name.

Summary table

Summary Table for Saint-Vallier Migratory Bird Sanctuary
CategoryInformation
Protected Area designationMigratory Bird Sanctuary
Province or territoryQuebec
Latitude/longitude46° 53' 30" N 70° 51' 00" W
Size in hectares356 ha
Date created (Gazetted)1986
International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) management categoryIII - Natural Monument or Feature
Additional designationsSaint-Vallier Important Bird Area
Main habitat typeMud and rocky outcrops, American Bulrush dominated herbaceous meadow
Key bird speciesGreater Snow Goose and Semipalmated Sandpiper
Other speciesBirds: Canada Goose, American Black Duck, Greater Scaup, Lesser Scaup, Least Sandpiper, White-rumped Sandpiper Killdeer, Black-bellied Plover, Spotted Sandpiper, Lesser Yellowlegs, Greater Yellowlegs. Plants: American Bulrush, Wild Rice, Grassleaf Arrowhead, Erect Arrowhead, Northern Arrowhead, Water-parsnip, Common Boneset, Rice Cutgrass, Tufted Hairgrass and Spike Rush sp., Great Bulrush, Giant Bur-reed, Prairie Cordgrass, Joe-pye Weed, Purple Loosestrife, Northern Manna Grass, Common Reed
Listed species under the Species at Risk Act (SARA)None
Management agencyCanadian Wildlife Service, Quebec Region

Contact Information

Environment and Climate Change Canada - Quebec Region
Canadian Wildlife Service
Protected Areas Unit
801-1550, avenue d'Estimauville
9250 - 49th Street
Québec, Quebec G1J 0C3
Toll Free: 1-800-668-6767 (in Canada only)
Email: ec.enviroinfo.ec@canada.ca
Date modified: