Nisutlin River Delta National Wildlife Area pamphlet

Nisutlin River Delta NWA
Photo: © Environment and Climate Change Canada, 2015. Nisutlin River Delta National Wildlife Area

What makes the Nisutlin River Delta NWA so special?

A delicate and intricate ecosystem, the Nisutlin River Delta National Wildlife Area (NWA) is one of the most important fall staging sites for migratory waterfowl in the southern Yukon. The extensive mud flats and shallow aquatic habitats attract impressive numbers of Trumpeter and Tundra Swans, geese, dabbling and diving ducks, and a variety of shorebirds as they travel south along the Pacific Flyway.

Spreading out over an impressive 5480 hectares, the Nisutlin River Delta NWA:

  • includes the most extensive inland freshwater delta in the Yukon;
  • is designated an Important Bird Area in both Canada and North America;
  • is used by more than 10 species at risk, includingthe Peregrine Falcon, Common Nighthawk, Olive-sided Flycatcher and Little Brown Myotis;
  • provides important Chinook Salmon rearing habitats in the Nisutlin River and its tributaries;
  • provides excellent Moose habitat, particularly for cows and calves in late winter and early spring;
  • is of great significance to the Teslin Tlingit people and is an important source of traditional foods.

Established in 1995 under provisions in the Teslin Tlingit Council final land claim agreement, the NWA stands as an example of how a shared vision for conservation can be achieved with First Nations.

What are Environment and Climate Change Canada Protected Areas?

Environment and Climate Change Canada establishes marine and terrestrial NWAs for the purposes of conservation, research and interpretation. NWAs are established to protect migratory birds, species at risk, and other wildlife and their habitats. NWAs are established under the authority of the Canada Wildlife Act and are, first and foremost, places for wildlife.

Migratory Bird Sanctuaries (MBSs) are established under the authority of the Migratory Birds Convention Act, 1994, and provide a refuge for migratory birds in the marine and terrestrial environment. The current Protected Areas Network consists of 54 NWAs and 92 MBSs comprising close to 12 million hectares across Canada.

What can I do at Nisutlin River Delta NWA?

Access to Nisutlin River Delta NWA is not restricted; however, there are no roads to the area and no visitor facilities. Despite this, certain activities are authorized, including camping, swimming, picnicking and wildlife observation. Other activities, such as hunting and fishing, may occur subject to certain restrictions. To protect wildlife from disturbance, the use of all-terrain vehicles, motorized personal watercraft, air boats and hovercrafts are prohibited. For more information on authorized activities, contact the Canadian Wildlife Service.

Canada Map
Long description of the map

Location of the NWA on an illustrated map of Canada. The NWA location is indicated by a general annotation in the province of Yukon.

Who can I contact?

Environment and Climate Change Canada - Pacific and Yukon Region
Canadian Wildlife Service
91780 Alaska Highway
Whitehorse, Yukon
Y1A 5X7
Protected Area web site
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