Upper Humber River Wetlands- one of Newfoundland and Labrador’s Special Places


This survey is now closed. We thank all of our respondents for taking the time to answer our survey.

Why Am I Here?


You have been contacted because you have been identified as a person or organization with a significant interest in or knowledge of the Upper Humber River Wetlands area.


Please spare 5 minutes to review the below information and then provide feedback by clicking on our survey link at the bottom of this page. The survey is anonymous and is composed of just six quick questions which will only take 2 minutes to complete. This is not intended to be a comprehensive public consultation, but we wanted to get an initial sense of use for the area, as well as public support for the conservation of this important wildlife habitat - that is where you come in.

We value and thank you for your feedback. 


SAM staff enjoying a day on the water in the Upper Humber River wetlands complex. SAM staff photo.

What makes the Upper Humber River wetlands area important?

The area in question is located at the base of the Northern Peninsula, approximately ten kilometres southwest of White Bay and thirty kilometres northeast of Deer Lake. The proposed conservation area encompassed approximately 21,215 hectares in the original drafts of the historic proposed Wildlife Reserve boundaries. It is located along the western bank of the Upper Humber River, encompassing the majority of the wetland habitat (including Adies Pond) that stretches between the Town of Cormack to the southwest and the Town of Hampden at the northeast border. The Sir Richard Squires Provincial Park and campground is located directly along the southern border. 


There are a variety of local names that you may be familiar with, so for the sake of clarity: the Birchy Basin is known formally as Birchy Lake, Gales Bottom is also known as Alder Pond, and Ned’s Steady is found on a section of Adies River (located halfway between Adies Pond and Birchy Lake.) All of these features are found within the boundaries shown below. 


Upper Humber River Wetlands Complex- Area of Interest

2021-03_Upper Humber_propsed boundaries.

The Upper Humber River Wetlands area has long been understood by local residents and users to be an ecologically diverse wetland that offers important habitat to a large number of wildlife species. Initially identified for it's importance for breeding waterfowl such as Canada goose and American black duck, further wildlife surveys have shown that the area is also significant habitat for caribou, salmon, bats and the NF marten, not to mention more than a dozen provincially rare plants.


The area is also a highly prized recreational, and commercial, hunting and fishing area. Many local residents and visitors also value the area for its recreational values, such as for cabins, camping, hiking, canoeing, snowmobiling, bird watching and berry picking. There has been historical mineral exploration and commercial forestry, primarily in northeastern parts of the area. 

Upper Humber.JPG

View of the Birchy Basin. Image courtesy of Ducks Unlimited Canada.

What are we proposing?


Given the significant ecological and cultural value of the Upper Humber River Wetlands area to the province and to local residents, we believe that additional conservation measures should be put in place to ensure its long-term sustainability. Importantly, our goal would be to formally protect the current sustainable uses of the area as we view these as consistent with maintaining the ecological values of the area. There are several land conservation actions which could contribute to this goal, but one option might be to designate the area as a Wildlife Reserve under the Wildlife Act (1990). However, we first wanted to hear from you, whether you agree that this area is significant habitat and specifically whether you support additional habitat conservation measures being pursued.  


It is our intention to propose to government that a Wildlife Reserve be established with boundaries of a proposed Reserve as shown on the above map. Before we take that step, we first wanted to hear from you, whether you agree that this area is significant habitat and specifically whether you support the establishment of a Wildlife Reserve in the area.


What is a Wildlife Reserve?

A Wildlife Reserve is a geographically defined area that is legally protected for the purposes conserving important wildlife or habitat areas. Reserves are established following a government run public assessment and consultation process. Though regulations for each reserve are generally tailored to the specifics of the site, they typically seek to restrict activities that would be considered detrimental to maintaining the natural integrity of the area. There are three existing Wildlife Reserves in the province; to find out more about each of them click here. To see the legislation associated with each Reserve click here: