Development of a protocol to validate fish habitat models and test their transferability
Fish habitat models support an ecosystem-based approach to management and are used to:
- determine habitat loss and the amount of off-setting required,
- monitor fish habitat at contaminated sites,
- evaluate habitat restoration projects or
- establish Instream Flow Needs (IFN) requirements.
Fish habitat models are based on habitat suitability index (HSI) curves, but Canada-specific HSI curves and Biological Significant Periods (BSP) for key fish species are lacking. The project goal is to develop a standardized protocol for validating fish habitat models that use HSI curves. This tool will advance the decision-making process for the impacts of future projects and will guide remediation and monitoring projects for contaminated sites. Research will focus on the Arctic grayling (Thymallus arcticus) a species of interest for recreational fisheries, which is sensitive to contaminants, turbidity, temperature, and flow changes and requires non-fragmented habitat to move between various habitat types.
Central Canada: Great Lakes, St. Lawrence Freshwater Drainage Basin
- Date modified: