Christie Islet migratory bird sanctuary

Christie Islet Migratory Bird Sanctuary: landscape
Photo: © R. Butler. Christie Islet Migratory Bird Sanctuary: landscape.


Christie Islet Migratory Bird Sanctuary (MBS) is situated in Howe Sound, 1 km south of Anvil Island, approximately 30 km north of Vancouver, British Columbia. Christie Islet is a small mass of solid rock rising steeply from the sea to a height of about 20 m. The rock is weathered on the surface, forming numerous crevices and gullies where grasses and serviceberry have taken foothold. The islet is devoid of trees.

Importance of the Migratory Bird Sanctuary

Christie Islet MBS is the only site in the Vancouver area and in all of Howe Sound where substantial numbers of seabirds nest. Pelagic Cormorants, Glaucous-winged Gulls and Double-crested Cormorants are known to nest on the islet. Birds usually observed on or in the vicinity of the islet include Black Oystercatchers, Pigeon Guillemot, Northwestern Crow, Surf Scoters, Harlequin Ducks, Canada Geese and Bald Eagles. Harbour Seals also frequent the surrounding waters.

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 Regulations apply to Christie Islet 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 authorized by the Regulations. Possession of firearms or other hunting appliances is prohibited. Dogs and cats must not be allowed to run at large.

Access prohibitions or restrictions by the MBS landowner (private) 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 Environment and Climate Change Canada's protected areas, 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

  • Map of Christie Islet Migratory Bird Sanctuary
Long description for the Map

Map showing the location of Christie Islet Migratory Bird Sanctuary relative to British Columbia, the Strait of Georgia, Anvil Island, Christie Islet and Gambier Island. The map shows the boundaries of the sanctuary, which covers Christie Islet. The scale of the map is in hundreds of meters.

This map is for illustrative purposes only and should not be used to define legal boundaries. Christie Islet MBS 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 Christie Islet Migratory Bird Sanctuary
Category Information
Protected Area designation Migratory Bird Sanctuary
Province or territory British Columbia
Latitude/longitude 49°30' N, 123°18' W
Size in hectares (ha) 1 ha
Date created (Gazetted) 1962
International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) Management Category N/A
Additional designations None
Main habitat type Barren rock (75%), shrub (25%)
Key bird species Pelagic Cormorant, Glaucous-winged Gull, Double-crested Cormorant, Pigeon Guillemot, Northwestern Crow, Black Oystercatcher, Surf Scoter, Harlequin Duck, Canada Goose and Bald Eagle
Other species Mammals: Harbour Seal
Listed species under the Species at Risk Act (SARA) None
Management agency Canadian Wildlife Service, Pacific and Yukon Region
Landowner Private

Contact Information

Environment and Climate Change Canada - Pacific and Yukon Region
Canadian Wildlife Service
Ecosystem Conservation
5421 Robertson Road
Delta BC V4K 3N2
Toll Free: 1-800-668-6767 (in Canada only)
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