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Arctic Wildlife

Birding Tours

Inns North

The Amaulik Hotel

Amaulik Hotel

in Sanikiluaq, Nunavut

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Birding Tours

Most of the small islands in the Belcher Island archipelago provide breeding grounds for several species of ducks and geese. Rock crevices, lakes and ponds are summer home to many other migrating birds. Most of the species that nest in the Belcher Islands or visit here are waterbirds including:

  • King Eiders (Somateria spectabilis)
  • Common Eider (Somateria mollissima)
  • Long Tailed Duck (Clangula hyemalis)
  • Surf Scoter (Melanitta perspicillata)
  • White-winged Scoter (Melanitta fusca)
  • Common Goldeneye (Bucephala clangula)
  • Common Merganser (Mergus merganser americanus)
  • Red-throated Loon (Gavia stellata)
  • Common Loon (Gavia immer)
  • Arctic Loon (Gavia arctica)
  • Canada Goose (Branta canadensis)
  • Brant (Branta bernicla)
  • Black Guillemot (Cepphus Grylle)
  • Arctic Tern (Sterna paradisaea)
  • Glaucous Gulls (Larus hyperboreus)
  • Herring Gulls (Larus argentatus)
  • Rock Ptarmigan (Lagopus mutus)
  • Rough-legged Hawk (Buteo
  • Peregrine Falcon (Falco peregrinus)
  • Snowy Owl (Nyctea scandica)
  • Horned Lark (Eremophila alpestris)
  • Lapland Longspur (Calcarius lapponicus)
  • Snow Bunting (Plectrophenax nivalis)

In late April and early May, the Canada Geese return from their wintering area along the coasts of Delaware and Maryland to their breeding grounds on the Belcher Islands.

A population of almost 3000 pairs of Hudson Bay Common Eiders nest on the North Belcher Islands. The South Flaherty Islands observations count more than 15,000 birds wintering in the ice floe edges and polynyas.
South Flaherty Islands also sees the Surf and White-winged Scoter by the thousands.

King Eider

A King Eider (Somateria spectabilis)

Common Eider

Common Eider (Somateria mollissima)

Surf Scoter

Surf Scoter (Melanitta perspicillata)

Ducks at Polyana

Ducks at a polyana in the Belcher Islands

Snowy Owl

Snowy Owl (Nyctea scandica) on Belcher Island

Snow Bunting

Snow Bunting (Plectrophenax nivalis)


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