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Proceedings 2014/004

Proceedings of the National Peer Review of Screening-Level Risk Assessment Protocols for Freshwater Non-indigenous Species

Co-Chairpersons: Gilles Olivier and Sophie Foster
Editor: Sherry Walker


A national peer review science advisory process was held to provide science advice on a screening-level risk assessment (SLRA) prioritization protocol(s) for aquatic non-indigenous species (NIS). This process consists of at least two peer-review meetings. Part 1 was held in Montreal, Quebec in November 22-24, 2011 and resulted in a background document which reviewed and evaluated various risk assessment protocols for screening and prioritization of aquatic invasive species (Snyder et al. 2013) and the proceedings (DFO 2012). For Part 1, participants examined the methodological review section of the protocol and developed a framework for an SLRA protocol for aquatic NIS. Part 2, which these proceedings address, was held in Burlington, Ontario on March 19-21, 2013, to evaluate and apply SLRA protocols for freshwater NIS currently in trade within Canada across multiple taxa (freshwater fishes, molluscs and aquatic plants). Additional meetings will be required in the future to evaluate SLRA protocols for marine NIS and to assess the ability to prioritize all NIS using the chosen SLRA protocols. Three working papers on SLRA Protocols for freshwater NIS were reviewed. Recommendations were made for protocols that are suitable for SLRA prioritization in Canada, and these protocols were applied to develop lists of priority species for regulatory consideration and other management actions. Existing protocols for aquatic plants (Gordon et al. 2012) and molluscs (Keller et al. 2007) were used to screen species. For freshwater fishes, five protocols were evaluated and compared with the aim of applying one or more to screen freshwater fish species in trade in Canada. Participants of this process included Fisheries and Ocean Canada biologists, provincial biologists, academics from Canada and the United States, and a biologist from Canadian Food Inspection Agency. The resulting publications from Part 2 of this process include a Science Advisory Report, three Research Documents, and these Proceedings.

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