West Ironbound Island

44°13'  60 N

64°16'  60 W

West Ironbound is a 120-acre island along the Atlantic coast of southern Nova Scotia, near the dune beaches of the Kingsburg peninsula and the mouth of the La Have River.


In the mid-eighteenth century, the island was settled as a fishing outport. A century later, a local family moved there as lighthouse keepers, and for several generations they also worked a small potato farm and kept sheep. The human community is long gone but sheep still roam the island, the current flock tended by farmers who commute from the mainland.


West Ironbound is a coastal wonderland that includes a thriving rookery for great Blue Herons and abundant space for other nesting birds.


In 2010 the Kingsburg Coastal Conservancy acquired half the island to safeguard it from development and preserve its ecological integrity. In 2013 the Nova Scotia government, the Sitka Foundation and individual donations made it possible to buy the other half of the island.

WEST IRONBOUND: Portrait of an Island by Mariëtte Roodenburg, Christine Higdon and Larry Gaudet is a wonderful blend of pictures and prose describing a magical place located off of the tip of Gaff Point on the Kingsburg Peninsula.


The book was published in support of the fund-raising campaign to both protect the ecology of West Ironbound Island and to keep it available to the public forever.


Hardcover and paperback editions of the book are available directly from the KCC either at the Lunenburg Farmers Market when the KCC is hosting a table there or may be ordered by emailing for current pricing and availability.

Maps of West Ironbound Island