Silver Shiner

Aquatic species at risk

Species at Risk Act

Consultation Workbook on the proposed listing of the...

Silver Shiner
Proposed Risk Status: Threatened
January 2013

Silver Shiner

Common Name: Silver Shiner
Scientific name: Notropis photogenis
SARA Status: Under consideration
COSEWIC Status: Threatened * (April, 2011)
Region: Southern Ontario

* Notes: The Committee on the Status of Endangered Wildlife in Canada (COSEWIC) previously assessed the species to be of Special Concern (April, 1987).

Silver Shiner
Figure 1. A mature Silver Shiner (illustration © Joseph R. Tomelleri)

General Description

The Silver Shiner (Notropis photogenis) is a relatively large minnow that belongs to the carp and minnow family, Cyprinidae. It has the following characteristics:

  • Long, slender body;
  • Large eyes;
  • Snout is long and pointed, often with two black crescents between the nostrils;
  • Silver in colour with some blue or green iridescence;
  • Dark, narrow stripe along the middle of the back;
  • Anal fin has more than eight rays;
  • Dorsal fin is nearly directly above the base of the pelvic fins;
  • Spawning males develop tubercles; and
  • Maximum length is about 14 cm.

Distribution

The Silver Shiner occurs only in North America. It is found predominantly in the Ohio and Tennessee river drainages, which include 12 states in the east central United States. In Canada, the Silver Shiner is found only in southwestern Ontario, the northern limit of its distribution. This very limited area includes the Thames River, Grand River, Bronte Creek and possibly the Saugeen River and Sixteen Mile Creek, although additional surveys are required to confirm this.

distribution of Silver Shiner in Canada
Figure 2: Map of the distribution of the Silver Shiner populations, in Canada.

Habitat & Life History

The Silver Shiner is found in deep riffles or pools in medium-to-large streams with moderate to high gradients. Their preferred substrates are variable ranging from coarse boulders, gravel and pebbles, to finer sand, mud and clay. Silver Shiner are generally mature by 6 cm and spawn by age two. Spawning occurs in deep riffle areas in the late spring when water temperatures reach between 18 and 24°C. The known lifespan is at least three years, but is believed to be nearer to five years.

Diet

The Silver Shiner feeds at the surface and in mid-water, and have even been observed leaping out of the water to catch flying insects. It is considered an opportunistic feeder, consuming algae and a variety of aquatic invertebrates, including adult and larval insects, worms and crustaceans.

Threats

Threats to the Silver Shiner in Canada are poorly understood, but likely include both natural and anthropogenic factors. Water temperature is an important limiting factor, since it is at the northern limit of its distribution. In addition, agricultural and urban activities that contribute to habitat and water quality degradation, such as increased turbidity and sedimentation, contaminants, and excess nutrients, may also pose a threat to this fish. Additional threats may include dams, bait harvesting and introduced species.

Socio-Economic Considerations

Why Consider Socio-Economics in Listing?

When the Government of Canada considers protecting a species by listing it under the Species at Risk Act (SARA), it must also analyze the costs, benefits and impacts to Canadians that would result from listing the species.

Summary of the Cost-Benefit Analysis

When assessing the cost, benefits and impacts of listing a species under SARA, the role that other applicable federal, provincial and municipal legislation plays in protecting a species is also considered. In the case of Silver Shiner, the species is already listed as Threatened in Ontario under a similar piece of provincial legislation, Ontario’s Endangered Species Act, 2007 (ESA 2007). Both Acts result in species protection, habitat protection and the development of a recovery strategy. Consequently, listing Silver Shiner under SARA is expected to complement existing protection but not result in significant additional costs or benefits to Canadians.

For more details, or to get a copy of the full report, please contact the SARA Regional Manager by email at fwisar@dfo-mpo.gc.ca, or toll-free at 1-866-538-1609.

Let us know what you think

This workbook is part of a public consultation process to get your feedback on whether to add the Silver Shiner to the Species at Risk Act (SARA) List. Your answers to the following questions will help determine the federal Government’s decision.

It is important that you understand how the proposed listing can help to protect and recover Silver Shiner, and how it may impact on your activities. As a legally threatened species, automatic prohibitions of SARA would apply.

These prohibitions make it illegal to kill, harm, harass, possess, collect, buy, sell or trade an Extirpated, Endangered or Threatened species. It is also generally illegal to damage or destroy the places these species live. These prohibitions do not apply to species of Special Concern.

If a wildlife species is added to the SARA List as an Extirpated, Endangered or Threatened species, the federal government must prepare a strategy for its recovery. The recovery strategy outlines known threats to the species, identifies the habitat it needs to survive, and highlights gaps in knowledge. It also sets a goal for the species’ recovery.

A recovery strategy must be completed within two years if it is listed as Threatened. Note that the recovery strategy process will also involve further consultation.

How to use this questionnaire:

Please provide your responses to the questions on the following pages. We welcome feedback from all individuals, regardless of whether you are involved in activities that may or may not be affected by this listing.

Please also use extra sheets to expand your answers as needed.

Please return your completed comments by April 2, 2013 to the following federal Species at Risk office:

SARA Regional Manager
Fisheries and Oceans Canada
501 University Crescent
Winnipeg, MB R3T 2N6
Email: fwisar@dfo-mpo.gc.ca
Toll-free: 1-866-538-1609

Or provide comments directly through the SARA Registry.

The information you provide is important.
We appreciate the time and effort you take to complete this questionnaire.

Proposed SARA Listing of Silver Shiner

1. Are you in favour of listing the Silver Shiner as a Threatened species?

checkbox Yes
checkbox No
checkbox Undecided

Please explain your decision.





2. The following questions provide us with information about how you value the Silver Shiner. Please choose the response that best describes your opinion.

a. I believe it is important to maintain the Silver Shiner so that future generations can enjoy them.

checkbox Strongly disagree   checkbox  Disagree   checkbox  Neutral   checkbox  Agree   checkbox  Strongly agree

b. I believe the Silver Shiner plays a significant role in maintaining a healthy ecosystem.

checkbox Strongly disagree   checkbox  Disagree   checkbox  Neutral   checkbox  Agree   checkbox  Strongly agree

c. I believe the Silver Shiner has social and/or cultural significance to my community.

checkbox Strongly disagree   checkbox  Disagree   checkbox  Neutral   checkbox  Agree   checkbox  Strongly agree

d. I believe the Silver Shiner is an important part of our national heritage.

checkbox Strongly disagree   checkbox  Disagree   checkbox  Neutral   checkbox  Agree   checkbox  Strongly agree

e. I believe the Silver Shiner is an important subsistence food source.

checkbox Strongly disagree   checkbox  Disagree   checkbox  Neutral   checkbox  Agree   checkbox  Strongly agree

f. I believe the Silver Shiner has economic value (recreational or commercial values).

checkbox Strongly disagree   checkbox  Disagree   checkbox  Neutral   checkbox  Agree   checkbox  Strongly agree

g. I believe the Silver Shiner provides job opportunities (e.g. tourism) to the local economy.

checkbox Strongly disagree   checkbox  Disagree   checkbox  Neutral   checkbox  Agree   checkbox  Strongly agree

h. Others? (please specify)





3. The following questions provides us with information about how you perceive the following threats to the Silver Shiner. Please choose the response that best describes your opinion.

a. Farming/ Agriculture: Threats to species includes the modification of habitat (e.g. pollution, sedimentation, salinization, increased logging in natural habitats, water turbidity, reduction in oxygen levels, drainage works, and changes in water levels due to irrigation).

checkbox Very low    checkbox Low    checkbox Moderate    checkbox High    checkbox Very high

b. Ecosystem modification (Urban development and land use practices): Damage to habitat and poor water quality resulting from urban development and land use practices.

checkbox Very low    checkbox Low    checkbox Moderate    checkbox High    checkbox Very high

c. Infrastructure development: This threat refers to the loss and fragmentation of fish habitat from man-made barriers such as dams, that limit movement between feeding and spawning areas.

checkbox Very low    checkbox Low    checkbox Moderate    checkbox High    checkbox Very high

d. Invasive species: Threats to species include competition with native wild native populations for resources and shelter.

checkbox Very low    checkbox Low    checkbox Moderate    checkbox High    checkbox Very high

e. Climate change: Threats to species include the modification of habitats (e.g. water temperature, salinity, distribution of ice, breeding and feeding grounds); negative impacts on reproduction seasons; modification of food chain flows (e.g. plankton species). (*Silver Shiner in Ontario are believed to be at the northern extent of their range)

checkbox Very low    checkbox Low    checkbox Moderate    checkbox High    checkbox Very high

f. Fishing/Overfishing (legal, illegal, unreported catches): Threats to species include baitfish harvesting at higher rates than species survival or recovery capacity.

checkbox Very low    checkbox Low    checkbox Moderate    checkbox High    checkbox Very high

g. Other: Do you have any other comments about other possible threats to the Silver Shiner that may threaten their survival or recovery?





4. The following questions provide us with information about how the listing of the Silver Shiner could impact you or your activities.

a. Based on what you have learned about the Species at Risk Act, do you think adding the Silver Shiner to the SARA List would impact your activites?

checkbox Not at all    checkbox Not much    checkbox Don’t know    checkbox Yes, a bit    checkbox Yes, a lot

Why?





5. Do you feel that the listing of the Silver Shiner will have economic, social and/or ceremonial impacts to you?

checkbox Not at all    checkbox Not much    checkbox Don’t know    checkbox Yes, a bit    checkbox Yes, a lot

In what way?





6. If your activity is impacted by listing the Silver Shiner, would you be willing to change your activity?

checkbox Not at all    checkbox Not much    checkbox Don’t know    checkbox Yes, a bit    checkbox Yes, a lot

How?





7. All Canadian households, as well as industry, pay for the protection of all legally listed species under SARA. How much would you be willing to pay (in Canadian dollars) each year for the conservation, protection and recovery efforts for the Silver Shiner?

checkbox $0   checkbox $10   checkbox $20   checkbox $50   checkbox $100   checkbox more than $100

 

This last section is personal and confidential. We recognize that it is not insignificant to ask people to share personal information. To that end, we will adhere to strict ethical standards of privacy in doing further research with this information. Unless directed otherwise by the respondents, no information will be reported that can be attributed to any particular individual.

9. In what capacity are you completing this questionnaire?

checkbox  Individual    checkbox  Representative of a group

10. Where do you live?

checkbox British Columbia
checkbox Alberta
checkbox Saskatchewan
checkbox Manitoba
checkbox Quebec
checkbox Nova Scotia
checkbox New Brunswick
checkbox Prince Edward Island
checkbox Newfoundland & Labrador
checkbox Yukon
checkbox Northwest Territories
checkbox Nunavut
checkbox Ontario

 

 

  11. Which sector do you represent?

checkbox Aboriginal community
checkbox Aboriginal organization
checkbox Academic community
checkbox Agriculture/ Farming
checkbox Environmental organization
checkbox Fishing – aquaculture
checkbox Fishing – commercial
checkbox Fishing – recreational
checkbox Forestry
checkbox Government (specify level)
checkbox Hydro-electric
checkbox Manufacturing
checkbox Oil and gas
checkbox Professional services

checkbox Other ____________________


12. What is your age?

checkbox  Under 20
checkbox  20 - 29
checkbox  30 - 39
checkbox  40 - 49
checkbox  50 - 59
checkbox  60 or over

 

 

13. What is your gender?

checkbox  Female   checkbox  Male

Please add any other comments or concerns (add additional sheets if necessary) that you would like to have considered.









Thank you for taking the time to complete this survey.