Fisheries and Oceans Canada

Fisheries and Oceans Canada

March 26, 2007 14:31 ET

Canada's New Government and Conservation Groups Join Forces for Habitat Management

OTTAWA, ONTARIO--(CCNMatthews - March 26, 2007) - The Honourable Loyola Hearn, Minister of Fisheries and Oceans Canada (DFO), today announced the signing of an important and unique agreement with a coalition of nine major conservation non-governmental organizations to achieve better conservation and protection of fish and fish habitat.

"This agreement is an excellent opportunity for our government to work collaboratively with conservation organizations for a more effective and efficient habitat management program," said Minister Hearn. "Together we can share information and create strong policies to best conserve fish and protect their habitat."

The agreement was signed this morning by Minister Hearn and representatives of nine regional/national conservation non-governmental organizations at the Canadian Museum of Nature. The organizations include the Ducks Unlimited Canada, Atlantic Salmon Federation, Canadian Wildlife Federation, Nature Canada, Nature Conservancy of Canada, Pacific Salmon Foundation, Trout Unlimited Canada, National Watershed Stewardship Coalition, and Wildlife Habitat Canada.

"The partnership established by Fisheries and Oceans Canada and nine conservation organizations is an important step forward in advancing the conservation of habitat in watersheds across the country," said Gord Edwards, executive vice-president of Ducks Unlimited Canada. "By sharing information and working collaboratively on habitat restoration and management, we will ensure healthy watersheds for generations to come."

Under the agreement, each organization has appointed a representative to a steering committee that will work to promote the responsible management of fish habitat. The conservation organizations will have the opportunity to provide important advice to the government on issues and policies impacting on the stewardship of fish habitat. The agreement will also allow for better use of collective resources to deliver results for the conservation and protection of fish and fish habitat.

"We welcome the opportunity to work with Fisheries and Oceans Canada and the eight other non-governmental organizations to promote the stewardship of Canada's watersheds. The NGO community represented in this cooperative agreement will continue to be a powerful and vocal proponent of healthy fish and their habitat," said Bill Taylor, president of the Atlantic Salmon Federation.

"Trout Unlimited Canada is pleased to be joining Fisheries and Oceans Canada and our other national and regional partners in conservation in this coalition," stated Douglas Cressman, CEO of Trout Unlimited Canada. "Protection and restoration of aquatic environments and fish habitat are complicated undertakings, requiring many good hands and minds and a richness of perspectives. Working together on key initiatives we can make significant gains in conserving and protecting, clean cold water for fish and people."

The agreement is part of this government's ongoing commitment to work with a variety of organizations across the country to raise awareness, provide support and to actively involve Canadians in habitat management.

The nine conservation non-governmental organizations will work with DFO to promote integrated watershed plans that address habitat management protection and restoration priorities, to share information on research and monitoring, and to strengthen an adaptive management approach to the conservation and protection of fish and fish habitat.

Contact Information

  • Fisheries and Oceans Canada, Ottawa
    Sophie Galarneau
    Manager, Media Relations
    Ducks Unlimited Canada
    Leigh Patterson
    Corporate Media Relations Specialist