Seabirds and the Marine Ecosystem on the NE Newfoundland Coast
Seabird research in the Funk Island Ecological Reserve began in the 1950's by Les Tulk, the last Dominion and first Canadian Wildlife Service official in Newfoundland and Labrador and later, J.L. Paton Chair at Memorial University of Newfoundland (Tulk 1961). Since 1977, that research has been carried out continuously by MUN scientists and students working with fishers from Valleyfield to Carmanville. Research has focused on seabirds as responders and indicators to change in fish and ocean conditions on the northeast coast. A large collaborative research program funded the NSERC (National Science and Engineering Research Council) and DFO is ongoing in the area. This research is focused on the importance of capelin to marine predators (cod, marine mammals, and birds). The research is documenting associations between predators and capelin as well as demersal (off beach) spawning sites for capelin all the Straight Shore of Bonavista Bay. Besides generating basic information about changes in the marine ecosystem, this long term research program brings MUN (Memorial University of Newfoundland) and DFO scientists and students into the area each summer and also hires local students, rents accommodations and charters fishing vessels. We also work with local schools and town councils to bring our information back to local communities and to seek their advice and feedback.
01 Jan 1950
31 Dec 2005
Strategic Research Theme
Oceans, Fisheries and Aquaculture