Ocean tracking network Canada: A network approach to addressing critical issues in fisheries and resource management with implications for ocean governance
The Ocean Tracking Network (OTN) Canada is an integrative seven-year research program initiated in 2010 with academic, government, and industry partners. The team makes use of novel biotelemetry (primarily acoustic telemetry curtains), biologging, and oceanographic technologies to better understand changing ocean dynamics and their impact on ocean ecosystems, animal movements, and ecology and the dynamics of marine animal populations, many of which are commercially important. The network is organized around three ocean arenas (i.e., the Atlantic, Arctic, and Pacific) where specific research projects will occur. However, all projects will contribute toward addressing a single unifying national scale question-what are the movements of continental shelf marine animals, how do these movements affect species interactions, and what are the consequences of environmental variability/change and human activities on these species' distributions and abundance? Taxa that will be tracked include diadromous (e.g., salmon, eels, sturgeon) and marine (e.g., sharks, capelin, cod) fishes and a variety of marine mammals (e.g., grey seals, killer whales). Some of the common activities that occur in all arenas include measurements of oceanographic characteristics and variability at various spatial and temporal scales, movements of key species at several trophic levels, and use of key acoustic "bioprobes" (animals that carry tags that record locations visited, ocean conditions, and interactions with other tagged animals) and "roboprobes" (remotely controlled autonomous vehicles such as gliders that measure physical, biological, and chemical conditions) to complement measurements from fixed OTN acoustic telemetry curtains. Ultimately, scientific information generated will inform resource management, help formulate new socioeconomic policies, and provide some impetus to the reformulation of governance practices and legal standards.
Cooke, Steven J.; Iverson, Sara J.; Stokesbury, Michael J.W.; Hinch, Scott G.; Fisk, Aaron T.; VanderZwaag, David L.; Apostle, Richard; and Whoriskey, Fred. (2011). Ocean tracking network Canada: A network approach to addressing critical issues in fisheries and resource management with implications for ocean governance. Fisheries, 36 (12), 583-592.