You are Here - 80 years of Canadian Geographic maps


Animal Migration
Loss of Wildlife
Diminishing Habitat

Canada’s Wetlands

Image of a map showing Canada's wetland coverage

This map from 1987 shows Canada's geographical distribution of wetlands. There are 127 million hectares of wetlands, or 14 percent of the world’s share, within our country’s borders. While the eastern tip of Canada has prominent wetland space, Victoria and Queen Charlotte Island in British Columbia contain virtually none due to the mountainous landscapes. The largest areas of wetlands in Canada are located in Ontario, Manitoba, Alberta and the Northwest Territories visible on this map by the dark green shading. The Northwest Territories and Ontario combined hold half of all wetlands in Canada. In the Tantramar Marches, a national wildlife area that joins New Brunswick to Nova Scotia, 80 percent of wetland area was lost by the mid-1800s due to agricultural drainage. Around the time this map was made, the process of reverting the land back to marshland had started. As wetlands are a vital ecosystem to many species of Canadian plants and animals and an intricate part of our environment, special care must be taken not to lose these important areas. 

"Canada's Wetlands" from "Our vanishing wetlands", Canadian Geographic, August/September 1987