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Robson Bight Ecological Reserve

Date Established: 1982
Size: 1,715 hectares (467 ha of upland and 1248 ha of foreshore)
Robson Bight (Michael Bigg) Ecological Reserve


Ecological Reserves are areas in British Columbia selected to preserve representative and special natural ecosystems, plant and animal species, features, and phenomena. Ecological Reserves provide the highest level of protection for the maintenance of physical and biological diversity while allowing for research and educational activities. More information on Ecological Reserves »

This ecological reserve is subject to special restrictions.

Robson Bight (Michael Bigg) Ecological Reserve is legally designated (under the Species at Risk Act) as Critical Habitat for Northern Resident Killer Whales. As such, this area is a sanctuary for killer whales and all boaters (motorized and non-motorized) are expected to refrain from entering the reserve to reduce disturbance to these whales while they feed, socialize and use rubbing beaches. To support its role as a sanctuary, the upland portion of Robson Bight (Michael Bigg) Ecological Reserve is closed to all uses or entry. Here are some Guidelines for Watching Marine Wildlife and information on Robson Bight (Michael Bigg) Ecological Reserve:

Detailed Ecological Reserve Description

BC Parks has created a detailed description of each Ecological Reserve to support current or potential education and research. Each account includes physical, biological, and cultural information as well as management concerns regarding the Ecological Reserve, with references to supporting documents where available. Additional documents may also be made available, upon request.

Detailed Description


Ecological reserves are not created for outdoor recreation. Most ecological reserves, however, are open to the public for non-destructive pursuits like hiking, nature observation and photography. Consumptive activities like hunting, freshwater fishing, camping, livestock grazing, removal of materials, plants or animals are prohibited by regulation in ecological reserves. Motorized vehicles are not allowed. Research and educational activities may be carried out but only under permit.

Special Restrictions:

Robson Bight (Michael Bigg) Ecological Reserve was established to provide a sanctuary for killer whales. The reserve protects key habitats for killer whales and prevents their harassment while at the same time provides unique opportunities for killer whale research. Robson Bight (Michael Bigg) Ecological Reserve also protects a pristine estuary and forested shorelines.
Robson Bight (Michael Bigg) Ecological Reserve brochure, including detailed map.


Location and Maps

Any maps listed are for information only - they may not represent legal boundaries and should not be used for navigation.

Johnstone Strait coastline, 10 km SE of Telegraph Cove, Vancouver Island

Ecological Zones

Management Planning