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Chairholder Profile

Gary Anderson

Gary Anderson

Department of Biological Sciences
University of Manitoba

Chair Title

NSERC/Manitoba Hydro Industrial Research Chair in Conservation Aquaculture of Lake Sturgeon, Acipenser fulvescens

Chair Program

Industrial Research Chairs Program

Role

Associate Chairholder since 2015

Summary

The NSERC/Manitoba Hydro Associate Industrial Research Chair in Conservation Aquaculture of Lake Sturgeon focuses on developing best practices in Lake Sturgeon aquaculture and monitoring that will lead to the conservation of this culturally iconic but at-risk species. Lake Sturgeon is considered threatened or endangered across its Canadian range. Hydroelectricity is one of the cleanest and most sustainable energy sources available today, and Manitoba Hydro is an industry leader. However, while there is a clear need for sustainable energy production, it comes at an environmental cost, with disruption to fish habitat and corridors for fish migration. Therefore, legislation requires mitigation strategies for the protection of fish and fisheries as new and existing hydroelectric facilities are developed. With the support of provincial, First Nations and federal bodies, Manitoba Hydro has used conservation aquaculture and stock enhancement to protect and sustain threatened or endangered populations of Lake Sturgeon throughout Manitoba. However, present rearing methods for Lake Sturgeon are artificial and may lead to the production of fish that are ill-equipped to survive and contribute to the next generation.

Dr. Anderson has been working with Manitoba Hydro for over a decade on Lake Sturgeon physiology and ecology. Research conducted by students in his research program has determined the impact of rearing environment on stress response and growth; examined ecology of early life-history stages; and described gene flow in Lake Sturgeon populations affected by fragmentation due to hydroelectric generating stations. The research supported by this Chair will determine the impact of rearing environment during early life on key physiological and behavioural traits. It will also examine interactions between the environment, genotype and phenotype of developing Lake Sturgeon to determine whether the lessons learned from one population are applicable to another. Finally, the research will develop tools to improve monitoring and management of existing stocks of wild Lake Sturgeon using novel marking techniques and knowledge of operational sex ratios.

The research will facilitate environmental licensing of Manitoba Hydro generating stations by contributing to the knowledge needed to assess environmental impacts and develop mitigation measures for Lake Sturgeon. The research will enhance Manitoba Hydro’s position as a global leader in the responsible use of water as a much-needed sustainable resource and will lead to conservation aquaculture strategies for the protection of all species of sturgeon.

Partner

  • Manitoba Hydro/Hydro-Manitoba

Contact Information

Department of Biological Sciences
University of Manitoba
Winnipeg, Manitoba
R3T 2N2

Tel.: 204-474-7496
Fax: 204-474-7604
Email: gary.anderson@umanitoba.ca

Website:
This link will take you to another Web site http://umanitoba.ca/science/biological_sciences/people/ganderson/