Jervis Inlet enters Malaspina Strait in the Strait of Georgia north of the Sechelt Peninsula in southwestern British Columbia. The site is about 26 kilometres southeast of the town of Powell River. At the mouth of the inlet, on the northern side of Hardy and Nelson islands, and particularly around Scotch Fir Point, the waters are characterized by swift currents and tiderips. McRae Islet, which lies off McRae Cove, is situated 1.5 kilometres west-northwest of Scotch Fir Point, on the northern side of the entrance to Jervis Inlet. The islet is a granitic island with grasses growing in rock crevices where soil collects. The boundaries of the site include McRae Islet and the marine area in a five-kilometre radius around Scotch Fir Point.
The Jervis Inlet McRae Islet site is of national significance for breeding Glaucous-winged Gulls. In 1986, surveys showed that McRae Islet supported 262 pairs of this species, which is just over 1% of the Canadian population. Pelagic Cormorants, Pigeon Guillemots and American Black Oystercatchers also nest on McRae Islets, but in smaller, less significant numbers.
The marine waters in the vicinity of Scotch Fir Point are important feeding areas for marine birds, and this area seasonally supports a variety of birds in substantial numbers. Surveys of the narrow portion of the inlet east of Nelson Island, conducted during 1986 and 1987, showed that marine bird populations were highest from October to March, just as they are in the entire Strait of Georgia. Surf Scoters and Barrows Goldeneyes were the two most numerous species. A one-day aerial survey in spring 1977 found concentrations of up to a thousand diving ducks, (primarily Surf Scoters), as well as at least 300 Western Grebes at the mouth of Jervis Islet around Scotch Fir Point.
Conservation responses/actions for key biodiversity
The proliferation of aquaculture (fish and shellfish farms) is a problem due to its alteration of habitat used by the birds, and the direct effect of accidental drownings in nets and shooting of birds by farm operators. The nesting seabirds on McRae Islet are also susceptible to disturbance from recreational boaters.
BirdLife International (2022) Important Bird Areas factsheet: Jervis Inlet/McRae Islet. Downloaded from
http://www.birdlife.org on 27/11/2022.