Stock Delineation of Fish Species in the Mackenzie River

Regions: Inuvialuit Settlement Region, Gwich'in Settlement Area, Sahtu Settlement Area

Tags: biology, fisheries assessment, resource management, taxonomy, fish population, Mackenzie River, molecular genetics, fish distribution

Principal Investigator: Millar, Nathan P (7)
Licence Number: 13958
Organization: Gwich'in Renewable Resource Board
Licenced Year(s): 2006
Issued: Apr 10, 2006
Project Team: Dr. Paul Bentzen (Project development and genetics analysis, Dalhousie University)

Project Description: This study involves the determination of the population structure of fish in the Mackenzie River. Specific objectives include the delineation of stocks of three fish species: loche (Lota lota), crookedback (Coregonus clupeaformis) and coney (Stenodus leucicthys), and the identification of downstream fisheries as mixed-stock or single-stock fisheries. A population genetics approach will be employed to determine the population structure of these species of fish. Fin clips of harvested fish will be collected from local fishermen operating in locations spanning the Sahtu Settlement Area, Gwich’in Settlement Area and the Inuvialuit Settlement Region. No fish will be harvested directly for this study. The fin samples will be taken to Dalhousie University for genetic analysis, where the genetic information of each fin will be analyzed to determine the stock structure of the fish species.

Upon completion of the study, reports (technical and plain language) will be prepared, and distributed to all stakeholder organizations. These reports will also be freely available from the Gwich’in Renewable Resource Board website.
The study will be conducted from April 10 to December 31, 2006.

N.B. Sampling locations are not fixed. Collection of fish samples will be carried out by local fishermen at their habitual fishing sites, which include the following Mackenzie River and related watercourse areas: Peel River, Arctic Red River, Mackenzie River (near Fort Good Hope), Mackenzie River (near Norman Wells), Travaillant Lake, Tsiigehtchic (confluence of the Arctic Red and Mackenzie Rivers), Aklavik, East Channel / Inuvik, Shingle Point (ISR), and the Tuktoyaktuk Peninsula.