Nova Scotia Freshwater Fisheries Research Cooperative

Please submit completed and signed application forms to the following address:

Freshwater Fisheries Research Cooperative
Inland Fisheries Division
Nova Scotia Department of Fisheries and Aquaculture
Box 700, Pictou
Nova Scotia, B0K 1H0

What is the Nova Scotia Freshwater Fisheries Research Cooperative?

The purpose of the Nova Scotia Freshwater Fisheries Research Cooperative (FFRC) is to aid in determining the health and status of the freshwater sport fishery and to evaluate the strategies used to enhance and sustain the freshwater sport fishery.

The freshwater fishery in Nova Scotia has experienced a number of changes that are associated with habitat condition and exploitation. In response, government has introduced new recreational fishing regulations and supported numerous population enhancement and habitat restoration projects to benefit fisheries. These initiatives have been supported by anglers and their organizations through the Inland Fisheries Advisory Committee and the six regional Recreational Fishing Advisory Councils.

Along with the expansion of new initiatives to improve the sport fishery, a need has developed for additional fisheries assessment activity in the areas of management for trout species, smallmouth bass, chain pickerel, and Atlantic salmon. The impacts of initiatives to improve the freshwater fishery, although considered to be beneficial, have yet to be adequately assessed. The Nova Scotia Freshwater Fisheries Research Cooperative will augment current initiatives to further assess and improve the recreational fishery. Research topics that are related to inland fisheries management issues include habitat restoration, exploitation, fish population dynamics, migration, introduced species, fish health, and population enhancement. The Nova Scotia Department of Fisheries and Aquaculture will normally provide a maximum of $30k annually to support initiatives associated with Nova Scotia Freshwater Fisheries Research Cooperative projects.

Project Selection and Priorities

The main objective of the Freshwater Fisheries Research Cooperative is to address research questions that are directly relevant to sport fish management issues and incorporate results into strategies to maintain and improve freshwater sport fisheries.

The core membership comprises representatives from the Nova Scotia Department of Fisheries and Aquaculture (Chair), Fisheries and Oceans Canada and Nova Scotia academic institutions. Other individuals may be invited to join the NSFFRC for a limited term to provide particular expertise as needed. Research projects will be recommended for funding based on their relevance to scientific merit and priority activities to evaluate:

  • Population status of provincially managed sport fish
  • Special Management Areas regulations
  • Habitat factors that limit sport fish production
  • Habitat restoration initiatives
  • Population enhancement activities
  • Parasites and diseases of provincially managed sport fish
  • Impact of invasive/introduced species

Projects not eligible for funding

Please note that, in general, the FFRC does not support the following types of projects:

  • Research related to species other than sportfish
  • Projects that are not research orientated
  • Capital cost associated with the project such as purchase of electrofishers, vehicles, buildings, land, etc.
  • Projects which qualify for the Nova Scotia Sportfish Habitat Fund


Normally, FFRC funding for individual projects will not exceed $10,000. Successful applicants will receive 90% of total project cost after approval and upon project completion the 10% holdback will be sent to the applicant. Project reports are to be received prior to release of the 10% holdback. FFRC encourages applicants to match FFRC funding however this is not a requirement. In-kind contributions may be in the following context:

  • Non-professional volunteer time can be contributed at a rate of $10 / hr.
  • Milage associated with the project can be credited at a rate of $0.41 / km.
  • Donated professional materials, equipment services, or facilities will be valued at a fair market price.

Eligible Applicants

Organizations (academic institutions, community groups, etc) or anyone that has the ability and interest in undertaking research initiatives related to the sport fishery is invited to submit applications. Applicants are encouraged to discuss planned proposals with the chair or members of the Nova Scotia Freshwater Fisheries Research Cooperative. Depending on the proposed project, the Inland Fisheries Division could facilitate projects through logistical support or other means.

Project Length

Multi-year projects may be approved in principle; however projects can only be funded on an annual basis. For multi-year projects, applications will have to be submitted annually. Project reports are to be received prior to release of the 10% holdback funds.

Application Deadline

Proposal application deadline is March 1st. Proposals can be received by the deadline via email and a signed copy must be sent by mail to be included in our records.