Year of compilation: 2001
A colony of Great Blue Herons is also present during the breeding season. The colony has existed since 1883, with 60 nests in 1970, a peak of 70 nests in 1975, and declining numbers since then to 5 nests in recent years. This decline in nesting success was believed to be caused by marauding racoons. The predation has been counteracted successfully by the placement of sheet metal around the trunks of trees containing heron nests. The only confirmed breeding record for Saskatchewan of Cinnamon Teal took place here, and the adjacent ravines support breeding populations of Willow Flycatchers and Yellow-breasted Chats.
Present during the summer, but not breeding, are concentrations of American White Pelicans (over 50), Black-crowned Night-Herons (over 11) and Franklins Gulls (over 1000).
During migration, the area can be regionally important for staging ducks. Over 5,000 ducks can be seen here in one day during fall migration. A peak of 7,112 Mallards alone has been recorded here in fall, while in spring there is a high count of 660 Redheads.
The flats are within Buffalo Pound Provincial Park and have been identified as a candidate wildlife area under the International Biological Programme. Ducks Unlimited has constructed dykes in the area to regulate flooding, and has also constructed several nesting islands with the co-operation of the provincial government. The area has been developed as an eco-tourist attraction with about 11 kilometres of nature trails, wildlife viewing blinds and a marsh boardwalk.
BirdLife International (2021) Important Bird Areas factsheet: Nicolle Flats. Downloaded from http://www.birdlife.org on 22/01/2021.