An eastern mountain avens, only found on Brier Island and one other place in the world. (Photo by NCC)
This remote and rugged island in the Bay of Fundy is Nova Scotia’s most western point, and one of the province’s most popular destinations for birders and whale watchers. The Nature Conservancy of Canada (NCC) has protected 485 hectares (1,200 acres) along the western side of Brier Island, which includes the Big Meadow Bog, a rich habitat for many birds and several rare plants, such as the eastern mountain avens. A globally rare plant, the eastern mountain avens is found in only two regions of the world: on Brier Island and nearby islands, and in New Hampshire. To help conserve the avens, NCC and other conservation partners are undertaking a bog restoration project to reverse impacts caused by attempts to turn the bog into farmland many years ago.
NCC established the Brier Island Nature Reserve in 1988. Brier Island is located on the Atlantic Flyway and more than 300 species of birds have been recorded here. NCC and local groups hold regular beach cleanups to keep the reserve clean of marine debris that might harm shorebirds. Enjoy the sights and sounds from NCC’s 3.5-kilometre coastal trail, starting at either West Lighthouse or Pond Cove.