Alaksen National Wildlife Area - Restoration of old fields to estuarine habitat

Ducks Unlimited Canada is proposing to undertake habitat restoration to convert Fields 8 and 9 (old field habitat) of the Alaksen National Wildlife Area (NWA) to estuarine marsh. The proposed scope of work includes breaching approximately 50m2 of exterior dike along Fields 8 and 9, and the construction of approximately 780m of new dike along the southeastern edge of the fields. This would require over 14,000 m³ of fill, some of which may be able to be obtained through other restoration efforts on site. The purpose of the project is to restore important estuarine fish and fish habitat and maintain high quality wildlife habitat within the NWA while adapting to climate change impacts in the Fraser Delta.

This breach will allow the inundation of brackish water, which will gradually convert the old field habitat to 22 hectares of estuarine marsh to increase the amount of accessible brackish marsh habitat available for waterfowl and other wildlife. This conversion will restore the historic salinity gradients, circulation, and nutrient and sediment cycling to the area. The project will also increase the resilience of the NWA to sea level rise, which is consistent with ECCC's management of the area as set out in the NWA's Management Plan.

Project works will remove invasive plants and restore native vegetation to improve the overall habitat quality of the estuaries and salt marshes. Target species that will benefit from this project include native fish species such as juvenile Chinook salmon (Species at Risk) and waterfowl.

The proposed project will include reinforcing the inner dike in the fall or winter of 2021 into 22 and breaching the exterior dike in the fall or winter of 2022, during a period when the disturbance to migratory birds and other wildlife will be minimal.


Latest update

The assessment is in progress.



Environment and Climate Change Canada
Courtney Albert, Protected Areas Coordinator
5421 Robertson Rd Delta BC V4K 3N2
Delta, British Columbia V4K 3N2
Telephone: 604-350-1961

  • Location

    • Alaksen National Wildlife Area (British Columbia)
  • Nature of Activity

    • Remediation and conservation
  • Assessment Status

    In progress
  • Start Date

  • Proponent

    Environment and Climate Change Canada
  • Authorities

    • Environment and Climate Change Canada
  • Assessment Type

    Project on federal lands
  • Reference Number


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