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Observation sites

Both in spring and every autumn, the North Shore of the St. Lawrence River transforms into an immense migration corridor, one of the most important in Northeastern North America.

Thousands of raptors and passerines use this corridor every year. Moreover, the presence of the St. Lawrence estuary combined with the rich coastal sites (tidal flats, bays, etc.) make this sector an important migratory stopover for shorebirds and seabirds.  


This site is considered the best place in Quebec to observe diurnal raptors during migration.

  • Over 7,000 raptors of 13 different species in the autumn.
  • 255 documented species, including the extremely rare Small-billed Elenia (2021).
  • For more details, visit the eBird website.


This site is part of Saguenay Fjord National Park, located in the heart of the village of Tadoussac. Access starts from a trail that goes around this rocky point and extends into the Saguenay River.

  • A magnificent view of the fjord.
  • 198 documented species, including the extremely rare Black-tailed Gull (2019).
  • For more details, visit the eBird website.


Pointe-à-John and Bergeronnes Wharf are located together at the end of Rue de la Mer (follow Archéo-Topo). This site, with diverse habitats, offers an unobstructed view of the mudflat and the estuary, making it certainly one of the most beautiful places to admire the sunset.

  • A must-visit for gulls and diving and dabbling ducks.
  • Former migration monitoring site conducted by OOT, with over 220 observed species.
  • For more details, visit the eBird website.


A land-based observation site for marine mammals under the jurisdiction of Parks Canada. This rocky point extends into the St. Lawrence River and offers a beautiful view of the estuary. Access to the site requires payment.

  • An exceptional viewpoint for pelagic birds (and whales).
  • For more details, visit the eBird website.


Located in the heart of the village of Les Escoumins, this bay is one of the best places in Quebec to observe gulls. Black-headed Gulls and Little Gulls are regularly spotted in autumn among groups of thousands of Bonaparte’s Gulls. Small groups of shorebirds can also be seen along the shores of the bay.

  • 17 species of gulls have been recorded, including the rare Ivory Gull, Common Gull, and Ross’s Gull.
  • For more details, visit the eBird website.


Located 65 km east of Tadoussac, this vast salt marsh is accessible via Chemin du Barrage. This marsh is of great interest for observing shorebirds and waterfowl, from mid-rising tide to mid-falling tide. The shore on the other side of the point is also an excellent spot to observe shorebirds at high tide.

  • 3 important sites for shorebirds and waterfowl.
  • Salt Marsh Interpretation Center, eBird site.
  • La Pointe à Émile, eBird site.
  • La Pointe à Boisvert, eBird site.


This 4km-long sandbar is certainly one of the best sites to observe shorebirds, which are present in very large numbers (from mid-rising tide to mid-falling tide). This site has been identified as one of the most important sites in Eastern North America for the Grey Plover, the Short-billed Dowitcher, and the White-rumped Sandpiper.

  • Plan for a half-day to fully appreciate the birdlife but beware of the tides.
  • For more details, visit the eBird website.


A shorter walking option is the Pointe des Fortin, located on the east bank of the Portneuf River, across from the sandbank. Shorebirds can gather at the tip of the point during high tide, while sea ducks congregate along the beach. Access to the site is through the municipal campground, and you can enjoy the view from a promontory facing the river.

  • Shorebirds and sea ducks.
  • For more details, visit the eBird website.


The Forestville dock is popular among sea ducks and seabirds, including large groups of scoters. Behind the dock, you can discover a protected small marsh and a trail to observe uncommon species in Haute-Côte-Nord, such as the Virginia Rail.

  • Sea ducks, seabirds (including scoters).
  • For more details, visit the eBird website.


Havre Colombier is a rocky bay with a few islands that can be observed from a roadside rest area halfway between Forestville and Betsiamites. The site offers breathtaking views of the St. Lawrence River, as well as a beautiful short hike, with the possibility of seeing the Black-backed Woodpecker.

  • Diving ducks and pelagic birds.
  • For more details, visit the eBird website.