Scott Islands marine National Wildlife Area
The Scott Islands marine National Wildlife Area (NWA) is the first protected marine area established under the Canada Wildlife Act. This marine NWA was established on June 27th, 2018. It conserves a vital marine area for millions of seabirds on the Pacific coast.
The 5 Scott Islands are off the northwestern tip of Vancouver Island, British Columbia (BC). These islands, and their surrounding marine waters, are one of the most diverse marine ecosystems on Canada’s Pacific coast.
The Scott Islands area:
- supports the highest concentration of breeding seabirds on Canada’s Pacific coast
- is the site of the most intensive seabird research in Canada
- is an international Important Bird Area
- hosts over one million nesting seabirds each year
- provides key ecological breeding and nesting habitat for 40 per cent of BC’s seabirds, including:
- 90% of Canada’s Tufted Puffins
- 95% of Pacific Canada’s Common Murre
- 50% of the world’s Cassin's Auklets
- 7% of the world’s Rhinoceros Auklet.
The marine area around the Scott Islands is also an Ecologically and Biologically Significant Area. Fisheries and Oceans Canada recognizes this area because of its:
- biologically rich environment
- diversity of marine mammals and fish species
- important habitat for several marine mammal species at risk
The Province of British Columbia already protects the 5 Scott Islands. The Scott Islands marine National Wildlife Area (NWA) protects the surrounding 11,546 square kilometers of marine environment.
This marine area is rich in seabirds’ favourite food sources, such as various small fish species and zooplankton.
The area attracts 5 to10 million migratory birds each year. Many travel vast distances across the Pacific to feed in the area. Some, such as the Sooty Shearwater, are at risk globally. Other birds are listed under Canada’s Species at Risk Act:
Environment and Climate Change Canada leads Scott Islands marine NWA planning and management activities. Other federal departments with responsibilities in the marine environment also help in the management of the marine NWA:
- Fisheries and Oceans Canada and Canadian Coast Guard
- Transport Canada
- Natural Resources Canada
The marine NWA will also be collaboratively managed with:
- Province of British Columbia
- Tlatlasikwala First Nation
- Quatsino First Nation
- stakeholders including industry and environmental organizations
Map of the area
Map showing an area off of the northwestern coast of Vancouver Island, British Columbia. The boundaries of Scott Islands marine National Wildlife Area are indicated. The marine National Wildlife Area follows a portion of the northwestern coast of Vancouver Island and extends out into the Pacific Ocean, covering the waters surrounding Triangle Island, Sartine Island, Beresford Island, Lanz Island and Cox Island. The scale on the map is in tens of kilometers and bathymetry is indicated in the legend in meters.
This map should not be used to define legal boundaries.
- Scott Islands marine National Wildlife Area: Google map. Please note that the Google map is a complementary source of information and does not represent the official map or site name.
- Scott Islands Protected Marine Area Regulations
- Scott Islands Protected Marine Area Establishment Order
- Scott Islands Protected Marine Area Regulations: frequently asked questions
Report a problem or mistake on this page
- Date modified: