Protecting the Restigouche

The Restigouche River is a Canadian Heritage River, and the watershed is one of Eastern Canada’s most spectacular wild watersheds, spreading over 1 million hectares of northern New Brunswick and Quebec’s Gaspé.

It is recognized by international Two Countries, One Forest network as one of 5 critical ecological linkages in the northern New England/southern Quebec/ Maritimes region. Yet, less than 1% of the watershed in New Brunswick is protected from development, leaving most areas open for mining, logging or new development proposals.  Forest management plans show that most uncut areas of the Restigouche will be logged within 10 years.

The Restigouche Watershed is important for wildlife

Moose, black bears, American marten, fisher, bald eagles, barred owls, scarlet tanagers and numerous interior forest birds thrive amidst forest-covered hills, deep gorges and some of the most pristine rivers and streams in Eastern Canada.
Atlantic salmon - The Restigouche River and its tributaries support one of the most productive wild Atlantic salmon populations, with some of the largest salmon, in eastern Canada.
Canada lynx – Restigouche natural areas are home to critical populations of Canada lynx - the area provides a natural corridor for lynx to disperse for feeding and breeding between the Gaspé and northern Maine.

The Restigouche Watershed is important for people

A world-class destination for ecotourism, outdoor adventures, and angling, with plenty of economic tourism potential yet untapped.
Part of the traditional territory of the Gespe’gewa’gi Mi’gmaw, who have an interest in conserving Restigouche’s resources and cultural heritage
Many Restigouche communities are supported by canoeing, hunting, trapping and angling, with a deep attachment to the land, sea and rivers - angling alone is worth at least $20 million and hundreds of jobs to the region.
Forestry on public land is an important part of the region’s economy - increased conservation and ecologically-responsible forest management will help us sell forest products to an increasingly environmentally conscious marketplace.

Our vision is that the Restigouche Watershed area conserves the diversity of natural habitats and wildlife across the Restigouche River watershed (in New Brunswick and Quebec) and supports vibrant human communities and sustainable forest and river-based economies.

Identifying Values with Communities

CPAWS NB and our partners have identified natural assets in the Restigouche that need to be conserved to ensure vibrant communities, including:

  •     protected wilderness areas that support the ecotourism and tourism sectors, including roadless areas, steep slopes and scenic rivers;
  •     forest areas managed to support sustainable production of non-timber forest products, including mushrooms, ginseng, ground hemlock and maple syrup;
  •     protected river systems where forest harvesting and road-building is strictly controlled to prevent damage to wild Atlantic salmon rivers and spawning grounds




Restigouche Watershed Information Sheet  (English pdf) (French pdf)