Credits: REUTERS/JAIME E. CONNOLLY
Figures from the 2011 census released Wednesday show the number of same-sex couples in this country jumped 42.4% between 2006 and 2011, and the number of married same-sex couples has almost tripled over five years.
There are now 64,575 same-sex families living in Canada - 43,560 of those common-law couples and 21,015 married couples.
Same-sex couples are walking down the aisle at a much higher rate than their opposite-sex counterparts, with the number of couples made up of a man and a woman increasing a modest 2.9% since 2006.
Jane Badets, Statistics Canada's director general of social and demographic statistics, said it's the first real snapshot StatsCan has since same-sex marriage became legal in Canada in 2005.
"What was interesting was the increase (in same-sex married couples)," she said, but noted it would take much longer to spot any specific trends.
Same-sex couples tend to be younger, with 25.3% under 34, compared to 17.5% of their opposite-sex counterparts.
But same-sex couples are much less likely than opposite-sex couples to have children: less than 10%, compared to almost 50%, respectively.
Lesbian couples make up the large majority (80%) of same-sex couples with children.
Still, same-sex couples are a tiny portion of couples tallied by StatsCan in 2011, accounting for just 0.8% of all partnerships in Canada.
Canada was the third country in the world to legalize same-sex marriage, after the Netherlands and Belgium. Other countries have since jumped on the bandwagon, including South Africa, Denmark and Spain.