Beautiful Codroy Valley, NL (Photo by Mike Dembeck)

Beautiful Codroy Valley, NL (Photo by Mike Dembeck)

NCC expands nature reserve in Codroy Valley

June 3, 2020
Channel-Port aux Basques


Further protection for wildlife in internationally-recognized area

The Nature Conservancy of Canada (NCC) has conserved 19 hectares (47 acres) of boreal forest along the Grand Codroy River, upstream of one of the province’s most valuable wetlands for wildlife. The Codroy Valley is an internationally recognized habitat and supports more than half of the bird species found in Newfoundland and Labrador. The addition expands NCC’s nature reserve in the Codroy Valley to 262 hectares (647 acres).

Located 40 kilometres north of Channel-Port aux Basques, the Codroy Valley contains two of Canada’s Important Bird Areas and provides habitat for 243 species of birds, a diversity found nowhere else in the province. The Grand Codroy Estuary, where the Codroy River meets the Atlantic Ocean, was designated a Wetland of International Importance under the Ramsar Convention in 1987.  

The new addition to NCC’s nature reserve is located near the community of O’Regans and includes more than half a kilometre of river frontage. Mainly forested, the reserve features mature yellow birch, one of only a few types of trees known to host blue felt lichen, a federal species at risk of special concern.

The Codroy Valley is popular destination for birders and outdoor enthusiasts, and parts of NCC’s nature reserve are accessible along a trail maintained by the Codroy Valley Area Development Association.

This conservation project was made possible through the financial contributions of the Government of Canada through the Natural Heritage Conservation Program, part of Canada’s Nature Fund. This project was also funded by the North American Wetlands Conservation Act of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. The estates of David and Phyllis Pike provided critical private funding needed to secure matched contributions. The late David and Phyllis Pike were a couple from St. John’s who loved nature and their home province. 


“We are thrilled to be able to protect this forested area and add it to our Codroy Valley Nature Reserve. We are very grateful to the Government of Canada and U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service for their financial support for this project. We would also like to thank the family of Phyllis and David Pike of St John’s for their gift, which was critical to the success of this project.” - Megan Lafferty, NCC Program Director, Newfoundland and Labrador

“My parents, Phyllis and David Pike, were avid naturalists who loved Newfoundland. They were supporters of the Nature Conservancy of Canada for many years. Our family is so proud that their legacy includes helping to protect this important wildlife habitat in the Codroy Valley.”  -Christopher Pike

“This week marks Canadian Environment Week, and the theme this year is “Nature.” The expansion of the Grand Codroy Estuary Nature Reserve will protect important boreal forest habitat for wildlife in Newfoundland and Labrador. With help from partners like the Nature Conservancy of Canada, we are making progress toward conserving a quarter of Canada’s land and a quarter of its oceans by 2025. Congratulations to everyone who made this project happen and happy Environment Week!” - The Honourable Jonathan Wilkinson, Minister of Environment and Climate Change

“I would like to congratulate the Nature Conservancy of Canada on the conservation of 19 hectares of additional boreal forest habitat in the Codroy Valley. By working with partners like NCC on conservation projects like this one, we are protecting our natural heritage for now and for generations to come.” - Gudie Hutchings, Member of Parliament for Long Range Mountains


  • More than 19 species of waterfowl have been identified in the Grand Codroy Estuary, including the rare wood duck. The estuary is considered the provincial stronghold for breeding blue-winged teal and American widgeon.
  • NCC has been working in Newfoundland and Labrador since 1996, and has helped conserve 5,200 hectares (13,000 acres) of the province’s most significant landscapes from the Codroy Valley to the Avalon Peninsula coastline.


The Nature Conservancy of Canada (NCC) is the nation's leading not-for-profit, private land conservation organization, working to protect our most important natural areas and the species they sustain. Since 1962, NCC and its partners have helped to protect 14 million hectares (35 million acres), coast to coast to coast, with more than 31,500 hectares (78,000 acres) of ecologically significant land in Atlantic Canada.

The Government of Canada’s Natural Heritage Conservation Program (NHCP) is a unique public-private partnership to support new protected and conserved areas by securing private lands and private interests in lands. The program is managed by the Nature Conservancy of Canada (NCC). Federal funds invested in the program are matched with contributions raised by NCC and its partners, Ducks Unlimited Canada and the country’s land trust community.

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Media Contact:

Kathryn Morse
Director of Communications - Atlantic Provinces

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