Northeast Ungava Bay

Country/territory: Canada

IBA criteria met: -
For more information about IBA criteria, please click here

Area: 225 ha

Birds Canada / Nature Canada

Site description (baseline)
The Northeast Ungava Bay IBA encompasses three small archipelagos, containing about 589 islands. These archipelagos are located 80 km south of the abandoned community of Port Burwell, and are located to the south and north of Alluviaq Fiord. The islands are comprised primarily of granite-gneiss bedrock with a thin layer of soil covering sheltered areas. Where soil is present, tundra plant communities have developed with typical species such as crowberry, arctic willow, sedges, mosses, and lichens. Extensive ice scouring occurs around the perimeter of these islands as a result of the strong tides that occur within Ungava Bay (up to 14 to 16 m).

Key biodiversity
Northern Common Eiders (ssp. borealis) migrate to this area in late May as soon as the ice around the nesting islands has broken up. In early June they settle into colonies and begin nesting. An estimated 6,700 pairs were recorded on the three archipelagos of northeastern Ungava Bay in 1980. This results in an average of about 12.4 nests per island, and in total represents over 7% of the borealis subspecies' population. There is little recent information on breeding eiders breeding in the eastern Arctic, and no more recent population estimates exist for this colony.

Recommended citation
BirdLife International (2023) Important Bird Area factsheet: Northeast Ungava Bay. Downloaded from on 02/06/2023.