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Birds of Nova Scotia

The osprey is the provincial bird of Nova Scotia. These large birds of prey are found near water on all continents except Antarctica. They are smaller than eagles, but larger than hawks, with bodies 53 cm to 62 cm long and wingspans of 135 cm to 183 cm.

Nova Scotia adopted the osprey (Pandion haliaetus) as its official bird by an Act of the House of Assembly in 1994. This bird of prey is larger than a hawk and smaller than an eagle. Its main source of food is fish, and it can often be seen flying over oceans, rivers and lakes. Ospreys migrate south in the winter.


Nova Scotia is a birder’s paradise. We have wonderful bird habitats – forests and fens, mudflats and meadows, street corners and shorelines.

Due to our location on the Atlantic Flyway, Nova Scotia provides vital feeding, resting, and breeding sites for many migratory birds.

Nova Scotia Nature Trust (

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