MURRAY HARBOUR, P.E.I. -- An island in eastern Prince Edward Island is now protected after being acquired by the Nature Conservancy of Canada.

Thomas Island, a 12 hectare site in Murray Harbour, is the last of five islands in the area to be protected.

The conservation project is a partial purchase and land donation under the federal ecological gifts program, which provides enhanced tax incentives to individuals and corporations who donate ecologically significant land.

The purchase price wasn't disclosed.

Thomas Island is home to colonial nesting birds and helps maintain P.E.I.s breeding population of great blue herons.

The area also contains mature white spruce forest along with red maple, yellow birch, balsam fir and black spruce trees.