Site description (2001 baseline):
In the Shepody Bay west section of the bay, over the six week fall migratory period, a total of 269,445 Semipalmated Sandpipers have been estimated to stopover in the area prior to completing the final leg of migration over the Atlantic Ocean to reach wintering areas in South America. This figure accounts for at least 7.7% of the total population, and is based on data from 1974 to 1983 using an improved estimation method that was reported in Canadian Field Naturalist (1993).
Numerous other species of shorebirds migrate through the Bay of Fundy, foraging on the flats. Some of the most significant species are Semipalmated Plover, Short-billed Dowitcher, Red Knot, Sanderling, and Least Sandpiper. Possibly 2% of the North American population of Semipalmated Plovers are seen in the Shepody Bay West section. Many White-rumped Sandpipers and Dunlin are also present. A count of 1,208 Black-bellied Plovers approaches global significance.
On Grindstone Island, there are colonies of breeding Great Blue Heron, Double-crested Cormorant, Herring Gull, Great Black-backed Gull and a few Common Eiders. Cape Enrage is becoming known as an excellent site to view migrating raptors and seabirds. A pair of Peregrine Falcons (most likely of the nationally threatened ssp. anatum) were recorded breeding on the coastal cliffs in the 1990s.
Approximately 107 ha of Marys Point has been designated part of the Shepody National Wildlife Area, This part is under a management plan, which includes a no-hunting regulation. Interpretation focussed on the staging shorebirds at Marys Point has been ongoing since 1980. However, if the growing number of visitors viewing the roosting flocks are left uncontrolled, significant disturbance to the staging shorebirds could occur.
BirdLife International (2023) Important Bird Area factsheet: Shepody Bay West. Downloaded from http://datazone.birdlife.org/site/factsheet/shepody-bay-west-iba-canada on 02/10/2023.