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National Wildlife Areas

National Wildlife Areas (NWA) are established and protected under the Canada Wildlife Act by the Canadian Wildlife Service of Environment Canada (an exception is CFB Suffield NWA which is managed by the Department of National Defence). National Wildlife Areas contain “nationally significant” habitat for migratory birds, support wildlife or ecosystems at risk, or represent rare or unusual wildlife habitat or a biogeographic region.

istock_000007897145xsmall.jpg The key functions of National Wildlife Areas are conservation, wildlife research and interpretation.  In most NWAs there are some opportunities for public use. In others, research and protection of sensitive natural resources take precedence.

There are currently 51 National Wildlife Areas in Canada, some of which have international importance.  For example, approximately 75 percent of the world’s population of Semipalmated Sandpipers stops in Shepody National Wildlife Area in the Bay of Fundy each year during their southward migratory period.


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