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Aquaculture Monitoring Standard - 2018

Aquaculture Monitoring Standard
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This Aquaculture Monitoring Standard (monitoring standard) will support the monitoring and sampling requirements of the Aquaculture Activities Regulations (AAR) under the Fisheries Act. This document provides the necessary level of detail to enable the owner or operator of an aquacul-ture facility to produce to the greatest extent possible, consistent and high quality data to support the implementation of the AAR.

This monitoring standard will be amended (in consultation with provinces) from time to time.


Containment array
means an assembly of interconnected cages used to cultivate fish.
Marine worms
mean aggregates of opportunistic polychaetes that colonize organically enriched substrates
Reference station
means a sampling station chosen to represent a background or natural state. Reference stations may be chosen as discrete sampling locations or contained along a transect representing a traditional “gradient” to “background” approach.
Sampling station
means the location where recording is carried out and any samples are collected.
Soft bottom
site means, further to definition in AAR, a site where acceptable samples can be taken from the benthic substrate based on the grab acceptability criteria and sampler options re-lated to oceanographic conditions and substrate type or classified as soft bottom based on pro-vincial criteria.
means a directional line, along which sampling stations are established or visual observations are made.

I. Survey for baseline information for new sites and expansion of existing sites [AAR section 8 and 9]

Predicted contours [AAR paragraph 8(1)(a)]

Survey of fish and fish habitat [AAR paragraph 8(1)(b)]

Bathymetry survey [AAR paragraph 8(1)(c)]

Benthic substrate monitoring [AAR paragraph 8(1)(d)]

Visual monitoring procedures [AAR paragraph 11(2)(a), (b), and (c)]

Visual monitoring locations [AAR paragraph 11(2)(a)(b) and (c)]

Timing of sampling [AAR paragraph 8]

Recording of baseline survey information [AAR subsections 8(1) and (3), and 9(1)]

II. Procedures for operational monitoring [AAR section 10(1)]

Timing of sampling [AAR paragraphs 10(1)(a) and (b)]

Benthic substrate monitoring [AAR paragraphs 10(1)(a) and (b)]

Visual monitoring [AAR paragraph 11(2) (a)(b) and (c)]

Reference stations [AAR subsections 10and 11]

Recording of operational survey information [AAR subsection 16]

Table 1: Number of sampling stations required for sediment and visual sampling (Nova Scotia and New Brunswick)
Column I Column II Column III Column IV
Maximum number of fish within cage site array during production cycle Number of transects Number of sampling stations (not including reference stations) Number of samples (3 samples/station for soft bottom sites at 0 m from containment array)
1-200,000 2 2 6
200,001-300,000 3 3 9
300,001-400,000 4 4 12
400,001-500,000 4 5 15
500,001-600,000 4 6 18
600,001-700,000 4 7 21
700,001-800,000 4 8 24
800,001-900,000 4 9 27
900,000-1,000,000 4 10 30
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