News release

Province To Protect More Land and Parks

NOTE: A list of proposed protected areas follows the release.

The Rankin government intends to designate 61 more wilderness areas, nature reserves and provincial parks across the province to protect Nova Scotia’s unique biodiversity and habitats for mainland moose, Atlantic salmon, migratory birds and other species.

In celebration of Earth Day – today, April 22 – Premier Iain Rankin and Environment and Climate Change Minister Keith Irving joined Brendan Maguire, MLA for Halifax Atlantic, and Rafah DiCostanzo, MLA for Clayton Park West, for a walk at two of the proposed sites: Blue Mountain-Birch Cove Lakes Wilderness Area and Herring Cove Provincial Park.

“I promised to put more emphasis on conservation and this announcement is another step in fulfilling that promise,” said Premier Iain Rankin. “Nova Scotia has protected more provincial Crown land than other jurisdictions in Canada, and I am committed to continuing this practice. I know how important our parks and protected areas are for enjoyment, quality of life and the wellbeing of Nova Scotians.”

The province will be consulting with Nova Scotians on these proposed sites. A 60-day, online consultation will launch soon, and Nova Scotians will be notified.

“In this list of 61 new protected areas there is an important mix of natural environments that Nova Scotians want protected: coastline, mature forests, waterways, corridors for wildlife, and parks that are accessible," said Environment and Climate Change Minister Keith Irving. "The diversity of these parks and protected areas is an impressive representation of the extraordinary beauty of our province.”


We have seen record visitors to our provincial parks year over year. These new areas will be welcome additions to our provincial park network for the public to enjoy for generations to come. Lands and Forestry Minister Chuck Porter

With the intended creation of 61 new protected areas in Nova Scotia, this is an important milestone for the protection of nature. The proposed expansion to Blue Mountain-Birch Cove Lakes Wilderness Area is particularly exciting, as it provides a key public access point to enjoy this near-urban wilderness. Chris Miller, executive director, Canadian Parks and Wilderness Society – Nova Scotia Chapter

Quick Facts:

  • in February, the government announced it will achieve its 13 per cent land protection goal. The consultation has now ended on sites announced earlier, and government will release more information about formal designations soon
  • these additional 61 sites will support government’s new 14 per cent land protection goal
  • since 2013, more than 150 sites have been protected
  • these areas will protect habitat for mainland moose, migratory birds and Atlantic salmon, and help efforts to conserve species at risk, old and mature forests and coastal ecosystems

Additional Resources:

Descriptions and locations of protected areas are available at:

Information on provincial parks is available at:


The following proposed sites will go through consultation:

  • Blue Mountain Birch Cove Lakes Wilderness Area (expansion), Halifax Regional Municipality
  • Devil’s Jaw Wilderness Area (expansion), Hants County
  • Fourchu Coast Wilderness Area (expansion), Richmond County
  • Trout Brook Wilderness Area (expansion), Inverness County
  • Upper Tantallon Provincial Park, Halifax Regional Municipality
  • Port La Tour Provincial Park, Shelburne County
  • Carters Beach Provincial Park, Queens County
  • Black Duck Cove Provincial Park, Guysborough County
  • Cape Jack Provincial Park, Antigonish County
  • Cookville Provincial Park, Lunenburg County
  • Marble Mountain Provincial Park, Inverness County
  • Ross Ferry Provincial Park, Victoria County

The following sites are also intended for protection:

  • Douglas Meadow Brook Wilderness Area, Colchester County
  • Eighteen Mile Brook Wilderness Area, Queens County
  • East River St. Marys Nature Reserve, Guysborough County
  • Minard Brook Nature Reserve, Queens County
  • Ponhook Lake Nature Reserve, Queens and Lunenburg Counties
  • South Branch Meadows Nature Reserve, Colchester County
  • Sugar Harbour Islands Nature Reserve, Guysborough County
  • Tobacco Island Nature Reserve, Guysborough County
  • Andrews Island Provincial Park, Guysborough County
  • Belfry Beach Provincial Park, Cape Breton
  • Big Pond Beach Provincial Park, Cape Breton
  • Blind Bay Provincial Park, Halifax Regional Municipality
  • Brule Shore Provincial Park, Colchester County
  • False Bay Provincial Park, Richmond County
  • Hay Cove Provincial Park, Richmond County
  • Herring Cove Provincial Park, Halifax Regional Municipality
  • Mackenzie Beach Provincial Park, Pictou County
  • Mahoney Beach Provincial Park, Antigonish County
  • Merigomish Provincial Park, Pictou County
  • Mickey Hill Provincial Park, Annapolis County
  • Lower East Chezzetcook Provincial Park, Halifax Regional Municipality
  • Paces Lake Provincial Park, Halifax Regional Municipality
  • Petit-de-Gras Provincial Park, Richmond County
  • Port L’Hebert Provincial Park, Queens County
  • Point Michaud Beach Provincial Park, Richmond County
  • Port Shoreham Beach Provincial Park, Guysborough County
  • Tor Bay Provincial Park, Guysborough County
  • Uisge Bàn Falls Provincial Park, Victoria County
  • Ainslie Point Provincial Park, Inverness County
  • Baker Inlet Provincial Park, Shelburne County
  • Blanche Provincial Park, Shelburne County
  • Blomidon Lookoff Provincial Park, Kings County
  • Bulls Head Provincial Park, Shelburne County
  • Cape George Provincial Park, Antigonish County
  • Cockscomb Lake Provincial Park, Hants County
  • Fundy Provincial Park, Annapolis County
  • Gaspereau River Provincial Park, Cape Breton
  • Irish Cove Provincial Park, Richmond County
  • Kingsburg Beach Provincial Park, Lunenburg County
  • MacCormack Provincial Park, Victoria County
  • MacCormacks Beach Provincial Park, Halifax Regional Municipality
  • MacElmon’s Pond Provincial Park, Colchester County
  • New Harbour Provincial Park, Guysborough County
  • North Mountain Provincial Park, Annapolis County
  • Orangedale Provincial Park, Inverness County
  • Pearts Cove Provincial Park, Guysborough County
  • Pinehurst Provincial Park, Lunenburg County
  • Roseway Beach Provincial Park, Shelburne County
  • Trout Brook Provincial Park, Inverness County