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Jackfish Lake


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Parkland County AB
Canada

Jackfish Lake


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Location

Athabasca County No. 12 AB
Canada

Jackfish Lake


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SK
Canada

As long as the rivers flow: Athabasca River knowledge, use and change


Author(s): Candler, C., Olson R., & Deroy S.

Year: 2010

Abstract:
"The Study confirms that, for members of both ACFN and MCFN, the Athabasca River continues to be central to their lives, their ability to access their territories, and their conception of themselves as aboriginal peoples, despite historical change. Use of the river by the participants is still strong and diverse, and while use has generally declined, it has declined in some areas more than others. Use for drinking water, trapping and teaching have declined more than use for hunting, transportation, and cultural/spiritual and wellness practices. The Study suggests that reduced quantity and quality of water in the Athabasca is having adverse effects on the ability of ACFN and MCFN members to access territories, and to practice their aboriginal and Treaty rights, including hunting, trapping, fishing and related activities.

Athabasca Tribal Council, possible contaminants in fish species of the Wood Buffalo Region, Alberta, Canada: First Nations environmental contaminants program. Final report


Year: 2003

Abstract:
First Nation people traditionally obtain their food by hunting and fishing. In highly developed areas, these traditional activities may put First Nations at risk due to potential exposure to industrial pollution. The Athabasca Tribal Council (ATC) First Nation communities in the Wood Buffalo Region are at particular risk due to the scale of industrial development in the region. First Nations are very concerned about pollution in the region and the effects it may be having on fish and wildlife, and their health as they continue to consume these traditional foods. The contamination of local fish and fishing lakes is of particular concern, as fishing continues to be an important cultural practice and food source in the region. Community consultations with the Mikisew Cree First Nation and the Athabasca Chipewyan First Nation indicated concerns and reluctance to consume traditional fish species. This will be a preliminary study to determine if there are potential contaminates in local fish populations. The study will focus on levels of trace metals as these are of particular concern to the community. The Mikisew Cree First Nation and Athabasca Chipewyan First Nation indicated fish species of concern including pickerel (walleye), lake trout, whitefish (Lake Whitefish) and jackfish (northern pike). As community members consume these fish, it was important to determine if any potential contaminates were present in the fish. It was proposed to collect fish from First Nation fishermen and analyze these fish for specific parameters, including heavy metals, PCB's and organo-chlorines. Mercury was of particular concern because its tendency to bio-accumulate in fish. There are also current fish consumption advisories for fish from the Athabasca River (Alberta Sustainable Resource Development, 2003). Organo-chlorines were of concern due to their persistent and bio-accumulative nature, and toxicity to aquatic species. Although there were no anticipated local sources of organo-chlorines, they were of concern due to long transport and subsequent deposition in northern ecosystems. This was designed as a preliminary study to determine if there were potential contaminates in local fish populations. Specific study objectives include: to address ongoing community concerns concerning contamination of local fish and consumption safety; to involve local community members in the sampling program and promote capacity building; to compare metal residues in fish flesh against safety guidelines; and to provide baseline information for future monitoring programs.

Segmentation analysis and bathymetric surveys of the Athabasca River - Segment 1


Year: 2008

Abstract:
This report provides a review available literature and data sources to determine segment boundaries within the Peace-Athabasca Delta (PAD) for the Athabasca River Delta channels. To support the segmentation analysis, and to determine the overwintering habitat potential within the major Delta channels, mapping grade bathymetric data were collected for several critical sites identified by the Instream Flow Needs Technical Task Group including: the Embarras River; Embarras River breakthrough channel to Mamawi Creek ( may also be known as Cree Creek); Mamawi Creek; Jackfish Creek (conveys Athabasca River water into Richardson Lake during flow reversals); Richardson River (conveys Athabasca River water during flow reversals); Fletcher Channel; Goose Island Channel; Big Point Channel; and, the area known as Big Eddy. The report contains a description of the field survey as well as its results.

Traditional resource use and traditional ecological knowledge: Application for the approval of the Devon Jackfish Project


Year: 2003

Abstract:
The traditional resource use and traditional ecological knowledge section of the Devon Jackfish Environmental Impact Assessment aimed to outline data pertaining to actual and potential issues for traditional resources in the local study area, note other relevant traditional ecological knowledge for the project locality and regional study area, and outline potential issues and recommended approaches for further evaluation or mitigation. This was accomplished through a variety of means, including a literature review (incorporating past environmental impact assessments and traditional land use and occupancy studies), interviews with Elders and community members, a review of topographic maps and air photo mosaic maps, and a valued ecosystem component workshop with key stakeholders and Elders. Seventeen interviews were video-recorded and conducted in the participant's language of choice (Chipewyan, Cree, or English), with the interview format following that outlined in Kituskeenow Cultural Land-Use and Occupancy Study. Devon and Nakewin Aboriginal Authority representatives were present at some interviews. Chipewyan Prairie First Nation representatives accompanied Elders to other interviews. Following a discussion of the study area and study methodology, this section of the report outlines existing conditions of the study area. This discussion includes traditional use sites as provided by NATA, summaries of the interviews, traditional plant use, traditional animal use, and residency and trapping. An impact assessment and review of possible mitigation measures, and a brief cumulative effects assessment is provided. According to this section, Devon planned to avoid certain traditional resource use sites, but for those sites that could not be avoided, compensation would be offered through revegetation methods, low-impact or reduced impact approaches to development, ongoing monitoring and discussion with community members. The report found that there would be no cumulative effects and impacts to traditional resource use and TEK resources from the project would be low.

Traditional resource use and traditional ecological knowledge: Jackfish 2 environmental impact assessment


Year: 2006

Abstract:
The traditional resource use and traditional ecological knowledge section of the Devon Jackfish 2 Environmental Impact Assessment is very similar to the same section of the environmental impact assessment for Devon's Jackfish Project in 2003. Like the previous study, this one aimed to outline data pertaining to actual and potential issues for traditional resources in the local study area, note other relevant traditional ecological knowledge for the project locality and regional study area, and outline potential issues and recommended approaches for further evaluation or mitigation. Because this section was based on a previous study, the majority of sources cited are identical with the previous study. This new traditional resource use and traditional ecological knowledge study incorporates the results from consultation that took place in 2004, 16 new traditional ecological knowledge interviews, including this time members of Fort McMurray First Nation, a meeting with Heart Lake First Nation, and information gathered during the new environmental impact assessment. As with the previous study, interviews were video-recorded and conducted in the participant's language of choice (Chipewyan, Cree, English, or a combination). Previous traditional ecological knowledge and traditional resource use research and baseline materials were reviewed, and interviewees were asked to sketch trails, camp areas, burials, and key landmarks on maps of the project area. This section follows the same format as the previous Jackfish report: first a discussion of the study area and study methodology, an outline of existing conditions of the study area (including traditional use sites as provided by NATA, summaries of the interviews, traditional plant use, traditional animal use, and residency and trapping). The traditional resource use and traditional ecological knowledge for the Jackfish 2 project, however, contain much more detailed information on traditional plants, including assessments of plant species capability (mean species richness and frequency). An impact assessment and review of possible mitigation measures, and a brief cumulative effects assessment are also provided. The report found that there would be no cumulative effects and impacts to traditional resource use and traditional ecological knowledge resources from the project would be low. Nonetheless, Devon's mitigation strategies include supporting traditional ways and values through potential sponsorship of traditional resource use and traditional ecological knowledge camps, training on traditional values and respect for the land, participating in the Cumulative Environmental Management Association, and maintaining ongoing communication with communities.

Understanding traditional use studies: Aboriginal traditions and knowledge. People of the boreal forest photo gallery.


Year: 2009

Abstract:
This gallery of photographs taken by Terry Garvin over a period of 50 years is a dynamic part of the People of the Boreal Forest Website, which is part of the Alberta Online Encyclopedia. The site was developed as an Aboriginal Centennial project by the Heritage Community Foundation in partnership with Terry Garvin and the Aseniwuche Winewak First Nation. Funding support was provided by Alberta Aboriginal Affairs and Northern Development (now Alberta Aboriginal Relations).

Walleye and goldeye fisheries investigations in the Peace-Athabasca Delta - 1975


Year: 1976

Abstract:
The following report presents the results of- investigations on walleye and goldeye in the Peace-Athabasca Delta in 1975. The report is divided into four main sections that concern the following topics: (1) walleye in the Richardson Lake – Lake Athabasca system; (2) goldeye in the Lake Claire – Mamawi Lake system; (3) field observations of the completed Little Rapids weir on Riviere des Rochers; (4) assessment of field trials of the feasibility of marking fish with acrylic dye. Spawning success, movement, distribution, age structure, and several other biological characteristics of walleye and goldeye in the Peace-Athabasca Delta are discussed. The results of fisheries investigations in 1975 were generally incomplete because of the late initiation (mid-July) of the field work, and must therefore be interpreted carefully. BACKGROUND AND PERSPECTIVE The study on walleye and goldeye in the Peace-Athabasca Delta was sponsored by the Aquatic Fauna Technical Research Committee of AOSERP, in cooperation with the Peace Athabasca Delta Monitoring Group. This group is a multidisciplinary committee composed of representatives from governments of Alberta. Saskatchewan and Canada, and charged with the responsibility of monitoring the effects of remedial measures taken to restore water levels in the delta region. AOSERP funded the investigation in order to gain insight into baseline conditions with respect to walleye and goldeye in the Peace-Athabasca Delta. Walleye Investigations The primary objectives of this study were to delimit fry production in Richardson Lake during 1975 and to obtain the current age structure of the Lake Athabasca walleye population. A secondary objective was to obtain length-weight, age-length relationships and to determine sex ratios for the Lake Athabasca walleye. Studies on walleye fry numbers in the Delta region, surveys of some Saskatchewan streams along the south shore of Lake Athabasca and studies on life history and population dynamics of walleye in the delta have provided evidence that Richardson Lake is a major spawning ground for walleye arid that spawning in Richardson Lake provides most of the annual recruitment to the Lake Athabasca walleye population. Although all areas in the delta have not been surveyed, no other region in the delta has been identified as a major walleye spawning area. Much of Richardson Lake, and its outlet stream, Jackfish Creek, freeze to the bottom during winter. Walleye migrate from Lake Athabasca to the Athabasca River by Big Point Channel during March. Due to ice thickness and the lack of flowing water, walleye cannot enter Richardson Lake until flood waters from the Athabasca River flow into Richardson Lake via Jackfish Creek. These flood waters normally lift the ice in late April, or soon thereafter, and the spawning migration proceeds into Richardson Lake. It is possible that unusually low waters in the spring could cause conditions which would prevent or delay walleye from spawning in Richardson Lake. In view of the present situation, it appears that Richardson Lake is critical to the recruitment of walleye in Lake Athabasca and that the spawning success of this species could be seriously disrupted by unusually low water, during the spring. Goldeye Investigations The major objectives of this study were to determine the age structure of the goldeye population in the Claire-Mamawi Lakes system; and to estimate spawning success of goldeye in the system. A secondary objective was to collect information concerning seasonal movements of goldeye. Results from past studies indicate that goldeye migrate into waters of the Peace-Athabasca Delta in the spring to spawn and move back into the Peace River during summer and autumn. These studies suggest that the Chenal des Quatre Fourches is a major spring migration route for adult and juvenile goldeye as well as a major summer and autumn migration route for goldeye adults, juveniles and fry. Concern has arisen that water level control structures may block) this migration route. It was not possible to absolutely assess the spawning success of goldeye in 1975 because the number of spawners was unknown. In relative terms spawning in 1975 appeared to be less successful than in previous years. Little Rapids Weir On the basis of data gathered during ground and aerial inspections, several sites close to and on both sides of the weir and fishway have been identified as being suitable for setting gillnets. Nets cannot be set close to the weir or fishway due to strong turbulence. The dam constructed across the Flett bypass channel of Riviere des Rochers was also inspected. Water in this channel can flow through the rockfill dam, but fish cannot pass through this structure. Acrylic Dye Marking of Fish A total of 38 walleye were marked during September 1975, in Lake Athabasca near Fort Chipewyan. Most walleye were injected in the operculum (gill cover) and several were injected in the lower jaw. Injection was accomplished more easily in the operculum than in the lower jaw but because pigmentation in the lower jaw is lighter, the dye was more visible. During October 1975, 47 goldeye were marked above the weir at Little Rapids. They were injected at the origin of the anal fin. Between 30 and 40 northern pike and lake whitefish respectively were also marked. The most suitable injection site of a northern pike was at the base of either pelvic fin. Blue dye was easily visible anywhere on the ventral surface of lake whitefish, but was most visible at the base of the adipose fin. ASSESSMENT In depth investigations of spawning success, movement, distribution, age structure and other biological characteristics of walleye and goldeye populations in Peace-Athabasca Delta were conducted for the Aquatic Fauna Technical Research Committee of AOSERP. The study provides baseline information on walleye and goldeye populations with respect to the “before conditions” faced by the Athabasca Delta fisheries in view of the prospect of present and increased levels of oil sands development. This “before condition” is in the context of the “after condition” produced by remedial measures implemented after the Peace-Athabasca Delta Project Investigations into the effects of the Bennett Dam constructed on the Peace River in 1968. The report has been reviewed extensively by Research Secretariat of Alberta Environment and the Aquatic Fauna Research Committee and has been approved for publication. The content of this report does not necessarily reflect the views of Alberta Environment, Environment Canada or the Oil Sands Environmental Study Group. The mention of trade names for commercial products does not constitute an endorsement or recommendation for use. The Aquatic Fauna Committee acknowledges the importance of this report with respect to future fisheries studies in the Peace-Athabasca Delta. It will serve as the basis for studies into the effects of other manmade, structures in, the Athabasca River basin. Such basic investigations: are important since the Peace-Athabasca Delta is one of the most productive regions in Alberta. It is recognized by the Oil Sands Environmental Study Group that although innovative research methodology was not employed in the study, changes in methodology are difficult to accommodate during or after completion of a field project. The OSESG does acknowledge that the research objectives have been met and compliments the researchers on addressing themselves directly to the research subjects. The Aquatic Fauna Technical Research Committee of the Alberta Oil Sands Environmental Research Program accepts \"Walleye and Goldeye Investigations in the Peace-Athabasca Delta - 1975\" as an important and valid research document, and thanks the researchers for their scientific contributions.