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Research Partners

Fisheries and Oceans Canada

Fisheries and Oceans Canada (DFO) commits themselves to provide programs and services that reinforce sustainable use and growth of Canadian waters. Maintaining sustainable fisheries and aquaculture, while encouraging healthy and productive aquatic ecosystems is a part of DFO’s mission.

The Experimental Lakes Area (ELA) is a world-recognized facility that studies the lakes and steams, their watersheds and the effects of pollutants or stressors in these environments. The ELA was created on a mutual agreement of the federal and provincial governments and is operated by the Central and Arctic Region of Fisheries and Oceans Canada. ELA’s results from their experimental studies can be used to plan ecologically sustainable management schemes for large bodies of fresh water.

Great Lakes Laboratory for Fisheries and Aquatic Sciences (GLLFAS) is a research division of the Central Arctic Region of Fisheries and Oceans Canada. The GLLFAS conducts research on the effects of nutrients on the productive capacity of the Great Lakes, accumulation and effects of toxic chemicals on Great Lake organisms, the rehabilitation of rare and endangered fish species, etc. The staff can be categorized into four groups: Fish Habitat Studies, Trophic Dynamics, Fisheries Production, and Ecotoxicology. Species that have been facing endangerment because of the conditions of Lake Winnipeg include: the Lake Winnipeg Physa and the Lake Sturgeon. The Physa is a freshwater snail that can be identified by its small bluish grey shell. It is currently being considered for listing under the federal Species at Risk Act (SARA) . Agricultural, municipal and industrial sources are aiding as a major threat to this species by contributing to the water pollution levels. The Lake Sturgeon is found in the Red-Assiniboine River, Lake Winnipeg designatable unit. The Lake Sturgeon can be identified by its shark-like caudal fin and dark to light brown body and light belly. A threat this species faces is habitat degradation which results from poor land use and agricultural practices.