The Nastapoka River is located in Québec’s Hudson Bay region, north of Lac Guillaume-Delisle and the village of Umiujaq. The river runs north from its source at Saindon and Amichinatwayach lakes for 400 km, before flowing west into Hudson Bay near the Nastapoka Islands.
The river runs through several large lakes, and between the lakes there are slow rapids and small waterfalls. The rapids become faster downstream, and in the last 53 km, the riverbed becomes very steep. Here the river runs through a deep valley with steep rocky slopes. The entire Nastapoka River basin is scattered with lakes and small rivers.
The Nastakopa River basin is an important breeding area for the eastern population of the Harlequin Duck. In 1992, there were 142 Harlequin Ducks in the area, which is about 10% of the eastern continental population. It is possibly the most important breeding area for eastern Harlequin Duck in the east and it certainly is the best area in the province. In 1991, 47 individuals were counted – this lower number may have resulted from a partial count.
Two pairs of Golden Eagles nest on cliffs of the Nastapoka River.
BirdLife International (2020) Important Bird Areas factsheet: Rivière Nastapoka. Downloaded from http://www.birdlife.org on 03/12/2020.