Corossol Island Migratory Bird Sanctuary

Photo Part of Corossol Island's shoreline
Photo: Jean-François Rail © Environment and Climate Change Canada. Corossol Island's shoreline.

The Corossol Island Migratory Bird Sanctuary (MBS) is located on the North Shore in the Gulf of St. Lawrence, 10 km south of Sept-Îles, in the archipelago of the same name. The site includes Corossol Island along with all islets, rocks and waters within a 500 metre radius surrounding the island, except in the waters between Corossol and Manowin Islands, where its limit is half way between the two islands.

The MBS was established in 1937 to protect colonies of Common Eider and other seabirds during nesting season. This 364 hectare protected area consists mainly of a rocky island with an elevation of 59 metres. As with all the islands of the Sept-Îles archipelago, the rock that forms Corossol Island is composed of granite and gneiss. The island's vegetation, as is typical for the North Shore, is essentially Balsam Fir forest with mixed stands of White Birch and White Spruce, and covers up to 80% of the area. Depressions on the island allow for other wetter types of habitats where plants such as Service Berry and Balsam Fir grow. The island is bordered by a strip of rocks.

Importance of the Migratory Bird Sanctuary

The MBS provides important nesting grounds for large numbers of Common Eiders. A 2010 survey of this protected area recorded 1500 of these birds. Many other seabirds, such as Razorbills, Black Guillemots and Common Murres share the site with the Eiders. Substantial numbers of Black-legged Kittiwakes, totalling more than 1300 in 2010, flock to Corossol Island during breeding season. Other familiar species, including Double-crested Cormorants, Great Black-backed Gulls and Herring Gulls nest in large numbers on the island. The area also supports a heron colony comprising several pairs of Great Blue Heron and one of Quebec's rare colonies of Leach's Storm-petrel. The presence of numerous pairs of colonial birds reflects the importance of the MBS in this part of the North Shore.

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 Corossol Island 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

  • Map of Carillon Island Migratory Bird Sanctuary
Long description of the map

Map showing the location of Corossol Island Migratory Bird Sanctuary relative to Quebec, Pointe à la Chasse, Île Manowin, Île du Corossol, La Petite Basque, Îlets De Quen, Chenal du Milieu, Chenal de l'Ouest and the Gulf of St. Lawrence. The map shows the boundaries of the sanctuary, which covers Île du Corossal and a portion of the surrounding water. 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. Corossol Island 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 Corossol Island Migratory Bird Sanctuary
Category Information
Protected Area designation Migratory Bird Sanctuary
Province or territory Quebec
Latitude/longitude 50° 5' 24" N 66° 23' 8" W
Size in hectares (ha) 364 ha
Date created (Gazetted) 1937
International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) management category Ia - Strict Nature Reserve
Additional designations Corossol Island Important Bird Area
Main habitat type Balsam Fir forest with stands of White Birch and White Spruce, shrubland and peatland
Key bird species Common Eider, Black-legged Kittiwake, Razorbill, Common Murre.
Other species Birds: Double-crested Cormorant, Great Black-backed Gull, Herring Gull, Black Guillemot, Leach's Storm-Petrel. Plants: Balsam Fir, White Birch, White Spruce, Service Berry
Listed species under the Species at Risk Act (SARA) None
Management agency Canadian 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)
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