Community Aquatic Monitoring Program– CAMP is a project where communities monitor the health and marine productivity of their local aquatic ecosystem.
From May–September, we monitored six sites around the Bras d’ Or Lakes using protocols developed by Fisheries and Oceans Canada. Long-term monitoring of fish and crustacean species, water temperature, salinity and dissolved oxygen profiles, vegetation and quality of sediment samples will help us determine if changes in the aquatic community structure are taking place, identify the cause, and take action to mitigate any negative impacts.
Classroom and field training took place in early May with coordinator Jim Weldon. Participants included Keith Christmas (Membertou), Rodney Alex, Shauna Gould and John T. Johnson (Eskasoni Fish & Wildlife), Robert Livingston (Stewards of River Denys Basin), Shelley Porter (CEPI), Shelley Denny, Dean Denny, Angela Morris and Allison McIsaac (UINR). Also in attendance were Lorne Penny and Stephanie Rose from DFO in Sydney. Eskasoni’s Grade 6 class was recruited to help and topics discussed ranged from respecting species to species behaviour.
UINR hopes that this program will lead to other community-based monitoring activities on the Bras d’Or Lakes. CAMP is funded by UINR and the in-kind contributions of human resources from the Mi’kmaq communities of Unama’ki.