Great Canadian Parks / Québec

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The Parks / Québec / Mingan Archipelago National Park



 


 


 

The shorelines and cliffs are breeding grounds for terns, gulls and kittiwakes. Double- crested cormorants, razorbills and black guillemots also call the islands home. Of the 200 species of birds, the Atlantic Puffin with its exotic bobbing head and brightly coloured beak is certainly the most visible. The sea currents make for a nutrient rich aquatic habitat and the smallness of the island (150 square kilometres) reduces the number of their predators. The archipelago is an important wintering area for ducks. The Common Eider is the most familiar species found along the shores. The male has brilliant white, black and yellow plumage in contrast to its mateŽs duller coat that provides camouflage when she is nesting. Grey seals, harbour seals and harp seals can generally be seen from as early as May. Nine species of whales are attracted by the abundance of plankton and fish in the island waters. Minke whales travel in groups of two to five close to the shore where they can be observed, while farther out, common porpoise, the blue whale, humpback whale, an endangered species, and the fin whale feed at greater depths. The many species of land animals include beaver, river otter, muskrat, red squirrel, snowshoe hare, red fox, weasel, bats and rodents. Warblers, sparrows, sandpipers and yellowlegs are only a sampling of the woodland birds of the boreal forests and rocky shores.

 

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