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Evaluating the Ecological Benefits and Risks of an Experimental Eastern Sand Darter (Ammocrypta pellucida) Reintroduction in Ontario

Regional Peer Review - Ontario and Prairie Region

April 3-6, 2023
Virtual Meeting

Chairperson: Gilles Olivier


Reintroduction is commonly identified in species recovery strategies or management plans as a potential method for improving the survival or recovery of species listed under the Species at Risk Act (SARA). This includes Eastern Sand Darter (Ammocrypta pellucida), a small-bodied freshwater fish species that has experienced extirpations across its Canadian range. The recovery strategy for Eastern Sand Darter (Ontario populations) identified reintroduction as a potential action that can help achieve population and distribution objectives (Fisheries and Oceans Canada 2012; Lamothe et al. 2021); however, reintroduction has yet to occur (Lamothe et al. 2019). A national CSAS process recently provided guidance on how to evaluate the potential ecological benefits and risks of reintroduction to the survival or recovery of SARA-listed freshwater species and broader ecosystem components (Lamothe et al. 2022). For the current request, the recently developed national guidance document will be used to evaluate the potential change in survival or recovery of Eastern Sand Darter through an experimental reintroduction to a formerly occupied ecosystem in southwestern Ontario, including the uncertainty of factors that may influence the outcome of different reintroduction scenarios. Ultimately, this request will provide guidance for management regarding the use of reintroduction for Eastern Sand Darter recovery and will serve as a model for how to use the existing national guidance document to inform future decisions on the use of species reintroduction for improving the survival or recovery of other SARA-listed freshwater species.


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Participation to CSAS peer review meetings is by invitation only.

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