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Ecological Framework of Canada
Ecoregions of Canada


The ecoregion covers the Ottawa Islands and other smaller islands (Farmer, Hopewell, Sleeper, and King George islands) that occur off the eastern coast of Hudson Bay between 57° N and 60° N latitude. The mean annual temperature is approximately -9°C with a summer mean of 3°C and a winter mean of -20°C. The mean annual precipitation is about 300 mm. Both temperature and precipitation increase to the south. Drizzle and fog persist for long periods in the summer when sea ice is absent. This ecoregion is classified as having a low arctic ecoclimate. The vegetation of the islands is characterized by shrub tundra communities. Dwarf birch, willow, and alder occur on warm, dry sites; poorly drained sites are dominated by willow and sedge. The region is associated with areas of extensive discontinuous permafrost. The islands are composed of resistant Proterozoic sedimentary and volcanic rocks elaborately folded into long, curved, hairpin-shaped structures. Higher summits reach about 122 m asl in elevation and are truncated by an old erosion surface. Bedrock outcrops are common, and Turbic and Static Cryosols developed on level to undulating morainal and marine deposits are the dominant soils in the ecoregion. Characteristic wildlife includes seal, walrus, whale, polar bear, arctic hare, fox, wolf, weasel, raptors, rock ptarmigan, gulls, seabirds, and waterfowl.

This ecoregion is part of the Southern Arctic ecozone.