Cumberland House, Saskatchewan
Suggi Lake is a large boreal forest lake in east central Saskatchewan, 50 km northwest of the town of Cumberland House. A river connects nearby Windy Lake to Suggi Lake. Windy Lake subsequently drains into the Saskatchewan River at the Cumberland Delta. Two long, narrow islands lie in the middle of Suggi Lake, of which the western-most supports many colonial-nesting birds including pelicans and cormorants. (In the language of the aboriginal residents, the Cree, the name Suggi means pelican.) Except for the southwest shore where sandy loam soils predominate, most of the lake is surrounded by bogs.
Six surveys between 1976 and 1991 yielded an average of 4,039 American White Pelicans on the western island. This average represents about 2.4% of the estimated global and almost 3.7% of the estimated national population. In addition to large numbers of pelicans, the 1976 to 1991 surveys recorded large numbers of nesting Double-crested Cormorants. An average of 3,618 birds was recorded, which represents about 1.4% of the estimated interior North American population.
Other water birds that have nested at this site include Great Blue Herons, California Gulls, Ring-billed Gulls, Herring Gulls, and Common Terns. No recent survey information is available for these species.
Pelicans and cormorants have a long history of being persecuted by commercial fishermen, due to the notion that they compete for fish of economic importance. Although studies have shown that pelicans and cormorants feed largely on minnows and non-game fish, the colonies at Suggi Lake have been vandalized. It is thought that excessive noise from commercial fishing boats may also contribute to nest desertion.
In the early 1970s, a portion of this lake was identified as a candidate wildlife area under the International Biological Programme (IBP-CT 72-4; 20 ha). Although no special regulatory measures exist with the IBP designation, it does serve to emphasize the ecological importance of the area.IBA Criteria Habitats Land Uses Potential or Ongoing Threats Conservation Status
|American White Pelican|