COSEWIC Assessment and Status Report on the Northern Sunfish Lepomis peltastes
Saskatchewan - Nelson River populations
Great Lakes - Upper St. Lawrence populations in Canada - 2016

Photo of Northern Sunfish
Photo: Northern Sunfish © Konrad Schmidt, 2016

Northern Sunfish - Saskatchewan - Nelson River populations
Not at Risk
2016

Northern Sunfish - Great Lakes - Upper St. Lawrence populations
Special Concern
2016

Table of Contents

List of Figures

  • Figure 1. Northern Sunfish, Lepomis peltastes
  • Figure 2. Approximate global distribution of Northern Sunfish Lepomis peltastes
  • Figure 3. Canadian distribution of Northern Sunfish. Symbols indicate locations and dates of records.
  • Figure 4. Distribution of Northern Sunfish in northwestern Ontario (Saskatchewan-Nelson DU). Symbols indicate locations and dates of records.
  • Figure 5. Distribution of Northern Sunfish in southern Ontario and Québec (Great Lakes-Upper St. Lawrence DU). Symbols indicate locations and dates of records.

List of Appendices

  • Appendix 1: Northern Sunfish records from Ontario and Québec.
  • Appendix 2: Threats Calculator for Saskatchewan-Nelson DU.
  • Appendix 3: Threats Calculator for Great Lakes-Upper St. Lawrence DU.

Document Information

COSEWIC
Committee on the Status
of Endangered Wildlife
in Canada

COSEWIC logo

COSEPAC
Comité sur la situation
des espèces en péril
au Canada

COSEWIC status reports are working documents used in assigning the status of wildlife species suspected of being at risk. This report may be cited as follows:

COSEWIC. 2016. COSEWIC assessment and status report on the Northern Sunfish Lepomis peltastes, Saskatchewan - Nelson River populations and the Great Lakes - Upper St. Lawrence populations, in Canada. Committee on the Status of Endangered Wildlife in Canada. Ottawa. xv + 51 pp. (Species at Risk Public Registry website).

Previous report(s):

Meredith, G.N. and Houston, J.J. P. 1987. COSEWIC status report on the Longear Sunfish Lepomis megalotis in Canada. Committee on the Status of Endangered Wildlife in Canada. Ottawa. 17 pp

Production note:

COSEWIC would like to acknowledge Tim Birt for writing the status report on the Northern Sunfish (Lepomis peltastes) in Canada, prepared under contract with Environment Canada. This report was overseen and edited by John Post, Co-chair of the COSEWIC Freshwater Fishes Subcommittee.

Please note that the Northern Sunfish was assessed in 1987 under the name Longear Sunfish Lepomis megalotis.

For additional copies contact:

COSEWIC Secretariat
c/o Canadian Wildlife Service
Environment and Climate Change Canada
Ottawa, ON
K1A 0H3

Tel.: 819-938-4125
Fax: 819-938-3984
E-mail: COSEWIC E-mail
Website: COSEWIC

Également disponible en français sous le titre Ếvaluation et Rapport de situation du COSEPAC sur le Crapet du Nord (Lepomis peltastes), populations de la rivière Saskatchewan et du fleuve Nelson et populations des Grands Lacs et du haut Saint-Laurent, au Canada.

Cover illustration/photo:

Northern Sunfish -- Cover photo courtesy of Konrad Schmidt.


COSEWIC Assessment Summary

Assessment Summary – May 2016

Common name
Northern Sunfish - Saskatchewan - Nelson River populations
Scientific name
Lepomis peltastes
Status
Not at Risk
Reason for designation
This is a small-bodied member of the sunfish family that inhabits shallow vegetated areas of warm lakes, ponds, and slow-flowing rivers. Though relatively rare, it is broadly distributed, and is subject to low threats.
Occurrence
Ontario
Status history
The species was considered a single unit and designated Not at Risk in April 1987. When the species was split into two separate units in April 2016, the "Saskatchewan - Nelson River populations" unit was designated Not at Risk.

COSEWIC Assessment Summary

Assessment Summary – May 2016

Common name
Northern Sunfish - Great Lakes - Upper St. Lawrence populations
Scientific name
Lepomis peltastes
Status
Special Concern
Reason for designation
This is a small-bodied member of the sunfish family that inhabits shallow vegetated areas of warm lakes, ponds, and slow-flowing rivers. Its spatial distribution is relatively small and likely patchy. It is suspected that the index of area of occupancy and abundance of the species has declined. Threats are variable across its range with some areas of declining habitat quality and other areas with improving habitat quality. Overall, the threats of siltation, contaminants, and invasive species were assessed as high. The species is likely to become Threatened unless these threats are effectively ameliorated.
Occurrence
Ontario, Quebec
Status history
The species was considered a single unit and designated Not at Risk in April 1987. When the species was split into two separate units in April 2016, the "Great Lakes - Upper St. Lawrence populations " unit was designated Special Concern.

COSEWIC Executive Summary

Northern Sunfish - Lepomis peltastes

Saskatchewan - Nelson River populations
Great Lakes - Upper St. Lawrence populations

Wildlife Species Description and Significance

Northern Sunfish is a small (length usually less than 13 cm), but otherwise typical, sunfish (Centrarchidae) with a deep, laterally compressed body. It has an upwardly angled opercular flap with a red/orange posterior margin. Breeding males are very colourful, having a reddish breast and bright blue wavy lines radiating posteriorly from the eye and opercle, often into the breast. Adult males retain juvenile characteristics including dark vertical bands and spotting on the dorsal and anal fins. A Northern Sunfish produces grunting sounds when courting. This can be an indicator of habitat quality because of its low tolerance of siltation and turbidity.

Distribution

In Canada, Northern Sunfish range includes northwestern Ontario, south and central Ontario, and southern Québec. In the United States, the Northern Sunfish occurs in Minnesota, eastern Wisconsin, northeastern Illinois, northern Indiana, northern Ohio, northwestern Pennsylvania, northwestern New York, and the lower peninsula of Michigan. Because Northern Sunfish is found in Canada in two National Freshwater Biogeographic Zones it is assessed as two designatable units.

Habitat

The species prefers shallow, vegetated areas of warm lakes, ponds, and slowly flowing watercourses. Northern Sunfish usually occurs in clear waters and is considered intolerant of siltation. Substrate usually consists of sand and gravel, as in the Thames River.

Biology

Northern Sunfish spawns during June and July. Eggs are deposited in a saucer-shaped depression in the substrate excavated by the male. Parental care lasts for a period of approximately 1 week and terminates when fry achieve the free swimming stage. Nesting is often colonial. The species is a generalist feeder, consuming mostly insects taken throughout the water column. It also eats small fishes and fish eggs. Northern Sunfish appears to disperse little and is considered a poor colonizer.

Population Size and Trends

Available data do not support quantitative estimates of abundance and population trends, although the species has never been considered common in Canada. Canadian occurrence records extend from 1924, but sampling has been sporadic and effort is often not known, particularly prior to 1995. Population declines are suspected in Québec and parts of southern Ontario because of habitat degradation. Very few Northern Sunfish have been collected in Québec since the early 1980s.

Threats and Limiting Factors

The most important threats, particularly for the Great Lakes – Upper St. Lawrence DU, include siltation and elevated levels of turbidity and contaminants emanating from agricultural and other forms of development. Less important and potential threats include invasive non-native species (particularly Round Goby), collection for the ornamental fish trade, and bycatch in the bait and recreational fisheries. The Saskatchewan-Nelson DU is threatened by invasive largemouth and smallmouth basses and Green Sunfish, whose ranges are expanding in northwestern Ontario. The most important limiting factor is probably the species’ low dispersal capacity, which slows recovery following depopulation and diminishes potential for population rescue. Northern Sunfish is also limited by low tolerance of turbidity.

Protection, Status, and Ranks

Northern Sunfish is not listed under the Canadian Species at Risk Act (SARA) or the Ontario Endangered Species Act. In Québec, the species is included on the Liste des espèces susceptibles d’être désignées menacées ou vulnérables (list of wildlife species likely to be designated threatened or vulnerable) as mandated by the “Loi sur les espèces menacées ou vulnérables” (RLRQ, c E-12.01) (LEMV) (Act respecting threatened or vulnerable species) (CQLR, c E-12.01). Because sunfishes are considered sport fish, Northern Sunfish and its habitat are protected under the federal Fisheries Act. Northern Sunfish is not protected by federal legislation in the United States. Global NatureServe rank is Apparently Secure (G4). National rank in Canada is Vulnerable (N3) and in the United States the rank is Apparently Secure (N4). Subnational ranks in Canada are Imperilled (S2) in Québec and Vulnerable (S3) in Ontario. Northern Sunfish is not ranked in Illinois, Indiana, Ohio, Pennsylvania, and Minnesota.



Technical Summary - DU1

Scientific Name:
Lepomis peltastes
English Name:
Northern Sunfish Saskatchewan-Nelson River populations
French Name:
Crapet du Nord Populations de la rivière Saskatchewan et du fleuve Nelson
Range of occurrence in Canada (province/territory/ocean):
Northwest Ontario and Saskatchewan-Nelson Basin in Ontario.

Demographic Information

Demographic Information of the species
Summary ItemsInformation
Generation time (usually average age of spawners)4 yrs
Is there an [observed, inferred, or projected] continuing decline in number of mature individuals?No
Estimated percent of continuing decline in total number of mature individuals within [5 years or 2 generations]Unknown
[Observed, estimated, inferred, or suspected] percent [reduction or increase] in total number of mature individuals over the last [10 years, or 3 generations].Unknown
Projected or suspected] percent [reduction or increase] in total number of mature individuals over the next [10 years, or 3 generations].Unknown
[Observed, estimated, inferred, or suspected] percent [reduction or increase] in total number of mature individuals over any [10 years, or 3 generations] period, over a time period including both the past and the future.Unknown
Are the causes of the decline a. clearly reversible and b. understood and c. ceased?N/A
Are there extreme fluctuations in number of mature individuals?Unknown

Extent and Occupancy Information

Extent and Occupancy Information of the species
Summary ItemsInformation
Estimated extent of occurrence22,100 km²
Index of area of occupancy (IAO) (Always report 2x2 grid value).
208 km² (discrete)
>>2000 km2 (continuous)
208 km²
Is the population "severely fragmented" ie. is >50% of its total area of occupancy in habitat patches that are (a) smaller than would be required to support a viable population, and (b) separated from other habitat patches by a distance larger than the species can be expected to disperse?
  1. No
  2. No
Number of locations (use plausible range to reflect uncertainty if appropriate)
(Note: See Definitions and Abbreviations on COSEWIC website and IUCN (Feb 2014) for more information on this term.)

Many

>>10 using siltation and contaminants as principal threat

Is there an [observed, inferred, or projected] decline in extent of occurrence?No
Is there an [observed, inferred, or projected] decline in index of area of occupancy?No
Is there an [observed, inferred, or projected] decline in number of subpopulations?No
Is there an [observed, inferred, or projected] decline in number of "locations"?
(Note: See Definitions and Abbreviations on COSEWIC website and IUCN (Feb 2014) for more information on this term.)
No
Is there an [observed, inferred, or projected] decline in [area, extent and/or quality] of habitat?

Uncertain

Ranges of potential predators/competitors expanding.

Are there extreme fluctuations in number of subpopulations?No
Are there extreme fluctuations in number of "locations"?
(Note: See Definitions and Abbreviations on COSEWIC website and IUCN (Feb 2014) for more information on this term.)
No
Are there extreme fluctuations in extent of occurrence?No
Are there extreme fluctuations in index of area of occupancy?No

Number of Mature Individuals (in each subpopulation)

Number of Mature Individuals of the species
PopulationN Clones (index of Mature Individuals)
Subpopulations (give plausible ranges)N Mature Individuals
Northwestern OntarioUnknown
TotalUnknown

Quantitative Analysis

Quantitative Analysis of the species
Summary ItemsInformation
Probability of extinction in the wild is at least.Not Done

Threats (actual or imminent, to populations or habitats, from highest impact to least)

i. Invasive species (Green Sunfish and black basses are expanding ranges; severity of threat unknown)

Was a threats calculator completed for this species and if so, by whom? Yes, by John Post, Tim Birt, Nick Mandrak, Jim Grant, Scott Reid, Marc-Antoine Couillard
Moderator: Dwayne Lepitzki

Rescue Effect (immigration from outside Canada)

Rescue Effect of the species
Summary ItemsInformation
Status of outside population(s) most likely to provide immigrants to Canada.

Possibly Declining

Erratic distribution in Minnesota and Wisconsin. Some recent extirpations in Wisconsin. Secure in Michigan.

Is immigration known or possible?Possible, but very unlikely
Would immigrants be adapted to survive in Canada?Probably
Is there sufficient habitat for immigrants in Canada?Yes
Are conditions deteriorating in Canada?

Possibly

Invasive native species are expanding ranges

Are conditions for the source population deteriorating?Yes
Is the Canadian population considered to be a sink?No
Is rescue from outside populations likely?No

Data-Sensitive Species

Data-Sensitive information of the species
Summary ItemsInformation
Is this a data sensitive species?No

Status History

COSEWIC: The species was considered a single unit and designated Not at Risk in April 1987. When the species was split into two separate units in April 2016, the "Saskatchewan – Nelson River populations" unit was designated Not at Risk.

Status and Reasons for Designation:

Status:
Not at Risk
Alpha-numeric codes:
Not applicable
Reasons for designation:
This is a small-bodied member of the sunfish family that inhabits shallow vegetated areas of warm lakes, ponds, and slow-flowing rivers. Though relatively rare, it is broadly distributed, and is subject to low threats.

Applicability of Criteria

Criterion A (Decline in Total Number of Mature Individuals):
Not applicable. Population trends are unknown.
Criterion B (Small Distribution Range and Decline or Fluctuation):
Not applicable. Although the IAO is below the threshold for Endangered, the number of locations greatly exceeds the threshold and the population is not severely fragmented.
Criterion C (Small and Declining Number of Mature Individuals):
Not applicable. The number of mature individuals is unknown.
Criterion D (Very Small or Restricted Population):
Not applicable. The number of mature individuals is unknown.
Criterion E (Quantitative Analysis):
Not done.

Technical Summary - DU2

Scientific Name:
Lepomis peltastes
English Name:
Northern Sunfish Great Lakes - Upper St. Lawrence populations
French Name:
Crapet du Nord Populations des Grands Lacs et du haut Saint-Laurent
Range of occurrence in Canada (province/territory/ocean):
Southern Ontario and Southern Québec; Great Lakes-Upper St. Lawrence Basin

Demographic Information

Demographic Information of the species
Summary ItemsInformation
Generation time (usually average age of spawners)4 yrs
Is there an [observed, inferred, or projected] continuing decline in number of mature individuals?Probably, inferred in Québec
Estimated percent of continuing decline in total number of mature individuals within [5 years or 2 generations]Unknown
[Observed, estimated, inferred, or suspected] percent [reduction or increase] in total number of mature individuals over the last [10 years, or 3 generations].Unknown
Projected or suspected] percent [reduction or increase] in total number of mature individuals over the next [10 years, or 3 generations].Unknown
[Observed, estimated, inferred, or suspected] percent [reduction or increase] in total number of mature individuals over any [10 years, or 3 generations] period, over a time period including both the past and the future.Unknown
Are the causes of the decline a. clearly reversible and b. understood and c. ceased?
  1. No
  2. Probably
  3. No
Are there extreme fluctuations in number of mature individuals?Unknown

Extent and Occupancy Information

Extent and Occupancy Information of the species
Summary ItemsInformation
Estimated extent of occurrence136,700 km²
Index of area of occupancy (IAO) (Always report 2x2 grid value).
764 km² (discrete)
>2000 km2 (continuous)
764 km²
Is the population "severely fragmented" ie. is >50% of its total area of occupancy in habitat patches that are (a) smaller than would be required to support a viable population, and (b) separated from other habitat patches by a distance larger than the species can be expected to disperse?
  1. No
  2. No
Number of locations (use plausible range to reflect uncertainty if appropriate)
(Note: See Definitions and Abbreviations on COSEWIC website and IUCN (Feb 2014) for more information on this term.)

Many

>>10 using siltation and contaminants as principal threat

Is there an [observed, inferred, or projected] decline in extent of occurrence?

Probably

Inferred in Québec

Is there an [observed, inferred, or projected] decline in index of area of occupancy?

Probably

Inferred in Québec

Is there an [observed, inferred, or projected] decline in number of subpopulations?Possibly in Québec
Is there an [observed, inferred, or projected] decline in number of "locations"?
(Note: See Definitions and Abbreviations on COSEWIC website and IUCN (Feb 2014) for more information on this term.)
Possibly in Québec
Is there an [observed, inferred, or projected] decline in [area, extent and/or quality] of habitat?Water quality deteriorating in some subwatersheds, improving in others.
Are there extreme fluctuations in number of subpopulations?No
Are there extreme fluctuations in number of "locations"?
(Note: See Definitions and Abbreviations on COSEWIC website and IUCN (Feb 2014) for more information on this term.)
No
Are there extreme fluctuations in extent of occurrence?No
Are there extreme fluctuations in index of area of occupancy?No

Number of Mature Individuals (in each subpopulation)

Number of Mature Individuals of the species
PopulationN Clones (index of Mature Individuals)
Subpopulations (give plausible ranges)N Mature Individuals
Southern/Eastern Ontario, Southern QuebecUnknown
TotalUnknown

Quantitative Analysis

Quantitative Analysis of the species
Summary ItemsInformation
Probability of extinction in the wild is at least.Not Done

Threats (actual or imminent, to populations or habitats, from highest impact to least)

  1. Siltation
  2. Contaminants
  3. Invasive species (Round Goby)

Was a threats calculator completed for this species and if so, by whom? Yes, by John Post, Tim Birt, Nick Mandrak, Jim Grant, Scott Reid, Marc-Antoine Couillard
Moderator: Dwayne Lepitzki

Rescue Effect (immigration from outside Canada)

Rescue Effect of the species
Summary ItemsInformation
Status of outside population(s) most likely to provide immigrants to Canada.

Possibly Declining

Secure in Michigan.

Is immigration known or possible?Possible, but very unlikely
Would immigrants be adapted to survive in Canada?Probably
Is there sufficient habitat for immigrants in Canada?Yes
Are conditions deteriorating in Canada?Yes, in some subwatersheds; No, in others
Are conditions for the source population deteriorating?Yes
Is the Canadian population considered to be a sink?No
Is rescue from outside populations likely?No

Data-Sensitive Species

Data-Sensitive information of the species
Summary ItemsInformation
Is this a data sensitive species?No

Status History

COSEWIC: The species was considered a single unit and designated Not at Risk in April 1987. When the species was split into two separate units in April 2016, the "Great Lakes – Upper St. Lawrence populations" unit was designated Special Concern.

Status and Reasons for Designation:

Status:
Special Concern
Alpha-numeric codes:
Not applicable
Reasons for designation:
This is a small-bodied member of the sunfish family that inhabits shallow vegetated areas of warm lakes, ponds and slow flowing rivers. Its spatial distribution is relatively small, and likely patchy. It is suspected that the index of area of occupancy and abundance of the species has declined. Threats are variable across its range with some areas of declining habitat quality and other areas with improving habitat quality. Overall, the threats of siltation, contaminants, and invasive species were assessed as high. The species is likely to become Threatened unless these threats are effectively ameliorated.

Applicability of Criteria

Criterion A (Decline in Total Number of Mature Individuals):
Not applicable. Population trends are unknown.
Criterion B (Small Distribution Range and Decline or Fluctuation):
Not applicable. Although the IAO is below the threshold for Endangered, the number of locations greatly exceeds the threshold and the population is not severely fragmented.
Criterion C (Small and Declining Number of Mature Individuals):
Not applicable. The number of mature individuals is unknown.
Criterion D (Very Small or Restricted Population):
Not applicable. The number of mature individuals is unknown.
Criterion E (Quantitative Analysis):
Not done.

Preface

The status of Northern Sunfish was assessed in 1987 (Meredith and Houston 1987). At that time, the taxon was considered to be a subspecies of Longear Sunfish, Lepomis megalotis; it has since been elevated to a full species (Page et al. 2013) which is assessed in this report.Northern Sunfish was designated Not at Risk due to its occurrence in numerous waterbodies in Ontario and Québec, although it was not considered to be abundant outside Quetico Park. Surveys conducted since 1987 indicate a larger Canadian range than was previously known; however, some concern exists regarding the status of populations in Québec. Sporadic and limited search effort prevents quantitative estimation of abundance trends, particularly in Québec, where the species is certainly rare.

COSEWIC History

The Committee on the Status of Endangered Wildlife in Canada (COSEWIC) was created in 1977 as a result of a recommendation at the Federal-Provincial Wildlife Conference held in 1976. It arose from the need for a single, official, scientifically sound, national listing of wildlife species at risk. In 1978, COSEWIC designated its first species and produced its first list of Canadian species at risk. Species designated at meetings of the full committee are added to the list. On June 5, 2003, the Species at Risk Act (SARA) was proclaimed. SARA establishes COSEWIC as an advisory body ensuring that species will continue to be assessed under a rigorous and independent scientific process.

COSEWIC Mandate

The Committee on the Status of Endangered Wildlife in Canada (COSEWIC) assesses the national status of wild species, subspecies, varieties, or other designatable units that are considered to be at risk in Canada. Designations are made on native species for the following taxonomic groups: mammals, birds, reptiles, amphibians, fishes, arthropods, molluscs, vascular plants, mosses, and lichens.

COSEWIC Membership

COSEWIC comprises members from each provincial and territorial government wildlife agency, four federal entities (Canadian Wildlife Service, Parks Canada Agency, Department of Fisheries and Oceans, and the Federal Biodiversity Information Partnership, chaired by the Canadian Museum of Nature), three non-government science members and the co-chairs of the species specialist subcommittees and the Aboriginal Traditional Knowledge subcommittee. The Committee meets to consider status reports on candidate species.

Definitions (2015)

Wildlife Species
A species, subspecies, variety, or geographically or genetically distinct population of animal, plant or other organism, other than a bacterium or virus, that is wild by nature and is either native to Canada or has extended its range into Canada without human intervention and has been present in Canada for at least 50 years.
Extinct (X)
A wildlife species that no longer exists.
Extirpated (XT)
A wildlife species no longer existing in the wild in Canada, but occurring elsewhere.
Endangered (E)
A wildlife species facing imminent extirpation or extinction.
Threatened (T)
A wildlife species likely to become endangered if limiting factors are not reversed.
Special Concern (SC)
(Note: Formerly described as "Vulnerable" from 1990 to 1999, or "Rare" prior to 1990.)
A wildlife species that may become a threatened or an endangered species because of a combination of biological characteristics and identified threats.
Not at Risk (NAR)
(Note: Formerly described as "Not In Any Category", or "No Designation Required.")
A wildlife species that has been evaluated and found to be not at risk of extinction given the current circumstances.
Data Deficient (DD)
(Note: Formerly described as "Indeterminate" from 1994 to 1999 or "ISIBD" [insufficient scientific information on which to base a designation] prior to 1994. Definition of the [DD] category revised in 2006.)
A category that applies when the available information is insufficient (a) to resolve a species' eligibility for assessment or (b) to permit an assessment of the species' risk of extinction.

The Canadian Wildlife Service, Environment and Climate Change Canada, provides full administrative and financial support to the COSEWIC Secretariat.


Wildlife Species Description and Significance

Name and Classification

Class:
Actinopterygii
Order:
Perciformes
Family:
Centrarchidae
English Name:
Northern Sunfish Saskatchewan-Nelson River populations
Scientific Name:
Lepomis peltastes
English Common Name:
Northern Sunfish
French Common Name:
Crapet du Nord

Historically, the taxonomic treatment of Northern Sunfish has been inconsistent. Some taxonomists (e.g. Gruchy and Scott 1966; Scott and Crossman 1973; Jennings 2013) considered the taxon to be a subspecies of Longear Sunfish (i.e. Lepomis megalotis peltastes;) while others (e.g. Trautman 1981; Bailey et al. 2004; Hubbs et al. 2004; Page and Burr 2011) ascribed it full species status (L. peltastes). Holm et al. (2010) treated populations in Ontario simply as L. megalotis. Northern Sunfish is presently considered to be a full species, distinct from Longear Sunfish (Page et al. 2013), which does not occur in Canada. In the northern U.S., the ranges of the two species do not overlap except in eastern Illinois, where Smith (1979) was unable to find intergrades and, perhaps, in northeast Ohio, where Trautman (1981) also found no intergrades. The two forms differ considerably in morphology (see following section). The Canadian range of Northern Sunfish lies within two major drainages: the Great Lakes-Upper St. Lawrence basin and the Saskatchewan-Nelson basin.

Morphological Description

A rather typical member of the genus Lepomis, Northern Sunfish has a deep, laterally compressed body (Figure 1). It can be distinguished from the similar Longear Sunfish, L. megalotis, by its smaller size (up to 17 cm in L. peltastes; 23.6 cm in L. megalotis) and shorter opercular flap, which angles upward and has a red/orange posterior margin (Bailey et al. 2004; Holm et al. 2010). Trautman (1981) noted differences in meristic characters, specifically, lateral line scales (35-37 in L. peltastes; 39-44 in L. megalotis) and pectoral fin rays (usually 13 in L. peltastes; 14 in L. megalotis). Adult male Northern Sunfish retain juvenile characteristics including dark vertical bands and spotting on the dorsal and anal fins (Trautman 1981). Breeding males are very colourful, having a reddish breast and bright blue wavy lines radiating posteriorly from the eye and opercle, often extending into the breast. Morphological differences between Northern Sunfish and Pumpkinseed (L. gibbosus), a superficially similar species native to Canadian waters, include more prominent red pigmentation on the opercular flap and dark spots on the dorsal and anal fins in the latter species (Holm et al. 2010).

Figure 1. Northern Sunfish, Lepomis peltastes
Photo of Northern Sunfish (see long description below)
Photo courtesy of Konrad Schmidt.
Long description for Figure 1

Photo of a Northern Sunfish (lateral view). This rather typical member of the genus Lepomis has a deep, laterally compressed body. It can be distinguished from the similar Longear Sunfish by its smaller size (up to 17 centimetres versus 23.6 centimetres) and shorter opercular flap, which angles upward and has a red to orange posterior margin. Adult male Northern Sunfish retain juvenile characteristics including dark vertical bands and spotting on the dorsal and anal fins. Males in breeding condition are among the most brilliantly coloured of North American fishes. 

Population Spatial Structure and Variability

No information is available regarding variation in Northern Sunfish across the Canadian portion of its range. A survey of allozyme variation in populations from Michigan, Wisconsin, and Illinois revealed low heterozygosity relative to Longear Sunfish populations sampled widely in the eastern U.S. Principal components analysis was not able to differentiate Northern and Longear Sunfishes based on allozyme variation (Jennings and Philipp 1992a). Scott and Crossman (1973) indicated there is little morphological variation across the Canadian range.

Special Significance

This species is too small to be commonly targeted by sport fishers. Males in breeding condition are among the most brilliantly coloured of North American fishes. Both sexes produce sound during the breeding season, presumably to attract mates (Gerald 1971; Hubbs et al. 2004). Due to its low tolerance of poor water conditions, Northern Sunfish is considered to be an indicator species of habitat quality (Jennings 2013).


Distribution

Global Range

The Canadian portion of the range of Northern Sunfish includes northwestern Ontario, southern and eastern Ontario, and southern Québec (Page and Burr 2011; Figure 2). In the United States, Northern Sunfish is distributed across northern Ohio, Indiana, northeastern Illinois, lower peninsula of Michigan, and eastern Wisconsin. A disjunct portion of the range occurs in north-central Minnesota; several additional disjunct, and likely relict, populations are present in southern Minnesota, central/western Wisconsin, southern Illinois and Iowa (extirpated in Iowa).

Figure 2. Approximate global distribution of Northern Sunfish Lepomis peltastes (dark blue). Range of the closely related Longear Sunfish L. megalotis is also shown (light blue). Adapted from Page and Burr (2011).
Map showing global distribution of Northern Sunfish. (see long description below)
Long description for Figure 2

. Map of the global distribution of the Northern Sunfish. The Canadian portion of the range includes northwestern Ontario, southern and eastern Ontario, and southern Quebec. In the United States, the Northern Sunfish is distributed across northern Ohio, Indiana, northeastern Illinois, the lower peninsula of Michigan, and eastern Wisconsin. A disjunct portion of the range occurs in north-central Minnesota; several additional disjunct populations are present in southern Minnesota, central/western Wisconsin, southern Illinois and Iowa (extirpated). 

Canadian Range and Designatable Units

Canadian populations of Northern Sunfish are concentrated in two geographic areas (Figure 3). In northwestern Ontario, Northern Sunfish is present in waters of the Nelson River watershed from Quetico Provincial Park westward through the Rainy River area to Lake of the Woods (Gruchy and Scott 1966; Scott and Crossman 1973). Records also exist from several sites in the vicinity of Lake of the Woods (Figure 4). A gap of approximately 800 km separates populations in northwestern Ontario from those in southern Ontario, where the species is present in waters flowing into Lake Huron, Georgian Bay, Lake St. Clair, Lake Erie, and Lake Ontario (Figure 5). In southern Ontario, the species is known from major watersheds including the Detroit, Thames, Sydenham, Ausable, Saugeen, Grand, Maitland, Trent, Moira, Ottawa, and St. Lawrence rivers. Recent records from the Trent River near Trenton, the Moira River, and lakes north of Kingston have narrowed the gap between populations in southern Ontario and eastern Ontario/Québec.

Figure 3. Canadian distribution of Northern Sunfish. Symbols indicate locations and dates of records.
Map showing Canadian distribution of Northern Sunfish. Symbols indicate locations and dates of records. (see long description below)
Long description for Figure 3

Map of the Canadian distribution of the Northern Sunfish in Ontario and Quebec, with symbols indicating localities and dates of records. 

Figure 4. Distribution of Northern Sunfish in northwestern Ontario (Saskatchewan-Nelson DU). Symbols indicate locations and dates of records.
Map showing Distribution of Northern Sunfish in northwestern Ontario (Saskatchewan-Nelson DU). Symbols indicate locations and dates of records.. (see long description below)
Long description for Figure 4

Map of the distribution of the Northern Sunfish in northwestern Ontario (Saskatchewan - Nelson River designatable unit), with symbols indicating localities and dates of records. 

Figure 5. Distribution of Northern Sunfish in southern Ontario and Québec (Great Lakes-Upper St. Lawrence DU). Symbols indicate locations and dates of records.
Map showing Distribution of Northern Sunfish in southern Ontario and Québec (Great Lakes-Upper St. Lawrence DU). (see long description below)
Long description for Figure 5

Map of the distribution of the Northern Sunfish in Ontario and Quebec (Great Lakes - Upper St. Lawrence designatable unit), with symbols indicating localities and dates of records.

In Québec, records are limited to tributaries of the St. Lawrence River from Delisle River to Lac St-Pierre (Figure 5). The majority of records from Québec are from the Châteauguay River and lower Outaouais River, with fewer records from the St. Lawrence River around Montréal and Lac St-Pierre. A single record from 1970 exists from Lac Brome (Yamaska River).

Previously, Northern Sunfish was not known from tributaries of Lake Ontario, hence, a gap separating southern Ontario populations from Québec populations was thought to exist (Meredith and Houston 1987). Sampling conducted since the last COSEWIC status update (Meredith and Houston 1987) has revealed populations in this area, particularly in the Moira River and nearby waters. The range is, therefore, more continuous between Québec and southern Ontario than was previously thought.

Designatable units (DUs) must satisfy criteria of discreteness and significance. An argument for discreteness of northwestern Ontario populations and those in southern Ontario and Québec can be made based on two factors. Firstly, northwestern Ontario populations occupy the Saskatchewan-Nelson River Freshwater Biogeographic Zone while populations in southern Ontario/Québec occupy the Great Lakes-Upper St. Lawrence Zone. Fish in the two areas likely have different postglacial dispersal histories (Meredith and Houston 1987; Mandrak and Crossman 1992). Habitat differences, and hence selective pressures, are more likely to be significant between rather than within biogeographic zones. Local adaptations may differentiate populations in the two biogeographic zones (although none is known). Secondly, the unoccupied 800 km gap separating these population clusters likely constitutes a barrier to gene flow.

The significance of the population clusters is less evident. Research on these populations is very limited, hence there is no evidence indicating genetic or ecologic differentiation, i.e. local adaptation has not been demonstrated. The wide disjunction between populations in northwestern Ontario and those in southern Ontario and Québec suggests different recolonization routes from refugial areas following the Wisconsinan glaciation. Canadian populations of Northern Sunfish are likely derived from the Mississippian Refugium; populations in northwestern Ontario likely dispersed through the Warren Route while those in southern Ontario and Quebec likely dispersed through the Chicago and Lower Peninsula of Michigan routes (Mandrak and Crossman 1992). Two DUs are recognized and named according to the biogeographic regions they now occupy, i.e. the Saskatchewan-Nelson DU (populations from northwestern Ontario) and the Great Lakes-Upper St. Lawrence DU (populations from southern Ontario and Québec). Although the significance of separate DUs is equivocal, recognizing them is consistent with treatment by COSEWIC of other freshwater organisms occupying this area (e.g. COSEWIC 2014).

Extent of Occurrence and Area of Occupancy

Using the minimum convex polygon method, the Canadian extent of occurrence (EOO) was determined to be 536,200 km2. The index of area of occupancy (IAO), calculated using the 2X2 km grid method, is 972 km2 (discrete measurement) or >>2000 km2 (continuous measurement). The discrete estimate of IAO includes the summed areas of grid squares containing Northern Sunfish records while the continuous estimate is based on summed areas of continuous stretches of watercourses between the grid squares containing records. For the Saskatchewan-Nelson DU, EOO is 22,100 km2 and IAO is 208 km2 (discrete) and >>2000 km2 (continuous). For the Great Lakes-Upper St. Lawrence DU, EOO is 136,700 km2 and IAO estimates are 764 km2 (discrete) and >>2000 km2 (continuous).

Discrete and continuous estimates of IAO are included as only rough approximations of minimum and maximum values, respectively. But both are likely overestimates of the area required for the most limiting life stage for this colonial nest-spawning fish species. Discrete values are clearly underestimates because Northern Sunfish almost certainly are present in grid squares within the range that were not sampled and therefore not counted. On the other hand, continuous estimates probably overestimate actual IAO values, because some fraction (potentially a large fraction) of grid squares representing watercourse areas in between squares that contain records do not support Northern Sunfish.

Continuous IAO estimates for both DUs are much greater than 2000 km2. Precise estimates were not made. Instead, grid squares within each DU were counted until the threshold value for quantitative criteria (i.e. 2000 km2) was reached. For the Saskatchewan-Nelson DU, continuous grid squares were counted for all watercourses except for Shoal Lake and Lake of the Woods. Because of the large sizes of these waterbodies, a complete count of grid squares would yield a continuous estimate of IAO much greater than 2000 km2. For the Great Lakes-Upper St. Lawrence DU, the 2000 km2 threshold was reached by summing grid squares from the Ausable, Maitland, Sydenham, and Thames rivers. Inclusion of the remaining areas within the range of the DU would have yielded an estimate far greater than 2000 km2.

Due to inconsistent sampling, quantitative comparisons of EOO and IAO through time are not possible. However, the small number of records from Québec combined with the intensity of sampling effort since the last COSEWIC Status Update (Meredith and Houston 1987) suggests that both measures of distribution may have declined. Despite considerable sampling effort throughout the Québec range (see Search Effort), recent records of Northern Sunfish exist only from the Châteauguay and Outaouais watersheds. IAO may also be declining in southern Ontario, especially in the upstream portions of the Thames, Grand, and Maitland rivers where most records date from before 1984 (Appendix 1).

Search Effort

Most, or all, records are derived from general fish surveys rather than targeted searches for Northern Sunfish. Since the previous COSEWIC Status Report, considerable search effort has been expended in Ontario by Fisheries and Oceans Canada (DFO) and Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry (MNRF) personnel (see COSEWIC 2013a). Similarly, in Québec, widespread sampling effort (mostly seining and electrofishing) has been undertaken, largely by the Réseau de Suivi Ichtyologique (RSI). The RSI network began in 1995 and has sampled much of the range of Northern Sunfish in Québec including Lac St-Pierre, Lac St-Louis, and Lac St-François over multiple years (outlined in COSEWIC 2013b and references therein). In recent years considerable effort over multiple years has also been expended in watersheds that are not known to support Northern Sunfish such as the St-François River (electrofishing surveys by Ministère de l’Environnement et de la Faune in 1993 and 2006) and the Richelieu River (see COSEWIC 2013b). Only 7 Northern Sunfish specimens have been reported from Québec since the previous COSEWIC Status Report: 5 from the Outaouais River and 2 from the Châteauguay River. Appendix 1 contains available Canadian records of Northern Sunfish from 1924 - 2014.


Habitat

Habitat Requirements

Northern Sunfish is most often found in shallow areas of warm lakes, ponds, and watercourses with little current. Vegetation is frequently present. Northern Sunfish is usually found in clear waters and is intolerant of turbidity and siltation (Smith 1979; Trautman 1981; Hubbs et al. 2004). Substrate usually consists of sand and gravel, as in the Thames River (Keenleyside 1978; Hall-Armstrong et al. 1996), although larger substrate material is typical in the Moira and Trent watersheds (Scott Reid, pers. comm.). Spawning occurs in shallow areas with sandy or gravel substrate (Holm et al 2010) and nursery areas consist of shallow areas with mixed vegetation and mineral substrate (Hall-Armstrong et al. 1996).

Habitat Trends

Habitat in northwestern Ontario is in remote and generally undeveloped areas including Quetico Provincial Park and is, therefore, generally stable. This contrasts with the situation in southern Ontario and Québec where habitat degradation has been widespread. In both areas, large-scale forest clearing (systematic clearing in southern Ontario began in the nineteenth century, Elliot 1998), development, and agricultural practices have resulted in serious water quality issues, notably siltation and elevated levels of turbidity and contaminants (e.g. Staton et al. 2003; Simoneau 2007; Berryman 2008). In recent years, habitat stewardship projects have been undertaken, mostly in southwestern Ontario, to encourage best management practices with the objective of reducing sediment and nutrient inputs from agricultural municipal sources (Erin Carrol, pers. comm. 2015). In Québec, some improvement in habitat quality has been achieved, including reduction of PCB concentrations in the Yamaska River (Berryman 2008). Regulations governing nutrient management and agricultural intensity may mitigate damage related to agriculture (BAPE 2003).

In Ontario, a network of 36 conservation authorities monitors watershed health and some disseminate results via report cards issued at 5-year intervals. Water quality criteria evaluated in report cards include levels of phosphorus and E. coli, and the diversity of benthic invertebrate communities. For example, the St. Clair Region Conservation Authority, which monitors 14 watersheds including the Sydenham River, reported in 2013 that total phosphorus in all watersheds exceeded provincial guidelines in all cases. Similarly, E. coli levels were higher than provincial guidelines in all but one monitored watershed. Overall water quality has improved over the last 5 years in three watersheds, held steady in seven watersheds, and deteriorated in two watersheds (SCRCA 2013). Over the same time interval, surface water quality reported by the Ausable Bayfield Conservation Authority remained stable (i.e. fair to poor) in most watersheds but improved in the Bannockburn and Main Bayfield watersheds (Brock and Veliz 2013). Between 2007 and 2012, the Upper Thames River Conservation Authority reported improving water quality in 12 watersheds, unchanged water quality in 16 watersheds, and no watershed with declining water quality (UTRCA 2012). Time-series data reflecting change in water quality in the Grand River watershed are not available as a report card; however, a water management plan documents familiar problems of elevated phosphate, nitrate, and turbidity, accompanied by low dissolved oxygen levels, particularly in central and lower regions of the watershed (Grand River Watershed Water Management Plan 2014). These inputs arise from point and nonpoint sources. While the number of watersheds that are experiencing improvement or deterioration in water quality is unavailable, the water management plan indicates that phosphate levels below wastewater treatment plants are substantially reduced relative to those recorded in the 1970s. Overall, it appears that Northern Sunfish habitat quality in southwestern Ontario, as indicated by total phosphorus, E. coli, and benthic invertebrate communities, is generally rated as fair or poor with some watersheds improving or holding stable and others deteriorating.


Biology

Life Cycle and Reproduction

Northern Sunfish spawns in June and July in Canada in typical sunfish fashion. Territorial males excavate roughly circular nests, often in colonies, in gravel or cobble substrate at a minimum water depth of 12 cm (Jennings and Philipp 1994). Spawning in Michigan occurs at temperatures above 23.3°C (Hubbs and Cooper 1935). Some females release all of their eggs in single nests while others divide their eggs across nests of several males (Jennings and Philipp 1992b). Adhesive eggs, approximately 1 mm in diameter are deposited in the nest and guarded by the male until hatching (3-5 days; Keenleyside 1978). Young are attended to for a few additional days until the yolk sac is absorbed and free swimming is achieved (Jennings 2013). Mature females produce 1,417 - 4,213 eggs (Carlander 1977).

Alternative reproductive tactics are employed by Northern Sunfish; territorial and small cryptically coloured sneaker males have been observed in the Thames River (Keenleyside 1972). Sneaker males gain fertilizations by entering the nests of larger territorial males and releasing sperm when females shed their eggs. In colonial breeding situations, territorial males may also “steal” fertilizations from neighbouring males. Goddard and Mathis (1997a) reported that prospecting females prefer males with larger opercular flaps.

Information on growth rates in Canadian populations is limited. A small study of fish sampled in 1995 from Mahon Lake in Quetico Provincial Park revealed a maximum age of 7 years and mean total length of 78 mm. Growth appears to slow considerably beyond age 2 years, at which time mean total length is 63 mm (Brian Jackson, pers. comm.). Hubbs and Cooper (1935) reported growth increments of 2.0-3.0 cm annually for the first 3 years in Michigan. Jennings (2013) reported similar findings in a small sample of 2- and 3-year-old fish from Beverly Lake in Wisconsin. Maturity is reached at 3-4 years of age and average length of 14 cm. The largest specimen reported by Scott and Crossman (1973) was 15 cm in length and maximum age is probably 8 years. Holm et al.(2010) reported a length of 17 cm for the largest specimen known from Ontario.

Female Northern Sunfish usually mature at 3 or 4 years of age (Jennings 2013). Mature males can be smaller (minimum 4.2 cm), especially individuals that adopt the sneaker life-history tactic. Very little information on longevity is available. The limited age distribution of the sample collected at Beverly Lake, Wisconsin, (n=26) suggests a short lifespan. Generation time (i.e. average age of spawners) is estimated to be 4 years.

Physiology and Adaptability

Little is known specifically about the physiology and adaptability of Northern Sunfish. It is active within a temperature range of 7-37.8°C and has little salinity tolerance (Carlander 1977). It is intolerant of siltation and has disappeared from many sites in Ohio, particularly from larger watercourses, as turbidity and siltation have increased (Trautman 1981).

Northern Sunfish is diurnal; it occupies clear waters and likely has good vision. The brilliant colouration in males indicates that visual communication is important during courtship. Similarly, visual displays are used to signal aggression. Production of sound during courtship and mating also suggests that Northern Sunfish, like many fishes, has auditory perception.

Dispersal and Migration

Movement appears to be limited. Spawning sites are thought to be in close proximity to habitat used at other times of year (Carlander 1977; Keenleyside 1978). Berra and Gunning (1972) suggested that the closely related Central Longear Sunfish (L. m. megalotis) in three Louisiana streams occupy small home ranges (average length of 42 m) during the warm months but that many individuals abandon these areas during the cold months. Patterns of seasonal dispersal of Northern Sunfish in Canada are not known.

Interspecific Interactions

Northern Sunfish hybridizes with Green Sunfish (L. cyanellus), Orangespotted Sunfish (L. humilis) (Trautman 1981), Bluegill (L. macrochirus) (Scott and Crossman 1973), and Pumpkinseed (Keenleyside 1978; Bolnick 2009). Keenleyside (1978) found evidence that Pumpkinseed and Northern Sunfish partition nesting habitat in the Thames River; Pumpkinseed nests were situated in backwater areas with silty substrate while most Northern Sunfish nests were located at sites with some flow and gravel substrate. Northern Sunfish is found in warmwater stream and lake habitats and is associated with somewhat different species assemblages in each situation. Common species in lake habitats include Bluegill, Pumpkinseed, and Yellow Perch (Perca flavescens) (Jennings 2013). Stream habitats containing Northern Sunfish frequently support diverse fish communities (Lyons 1984; Jennings 2013).

Northern Sunfish is an opportunistic feeder but is primarily an insectivore (Scott and Crossman 1973; Jennings 2013). It feeds on a variety of mature and immature insects captured throughout the water column as well as small fishes and fish eggs.

Numerous species include Northern Sunfish in their diets including wading birds and predatory fishes, especially basses (Micropterus spp.) (Goddard and Mathis 1997b; Bromilow 2014).


Population Sizes and Trends

Sampling and Abundance

Northern Sunfish has been recorded in Ontario in every decade since the 1920s with increasing frequency in recent decades due to more thorough sampling. In Québec, only 29 records exist; the first observations were in 1941. Most records date from the 1960s and 1970s and few observations exist since 1983 (Appendix 1). Although there is a long time series of Canadian records, the sampling employed does not support estimation of abundance.

Fluctuations and Trends

In the relatively remote areas of northwestern Ontario, the species appears to be widespread, although sampling has not been exhaustive. Populations in this DU are subject to less pressure from agricultural and other forms of development than populations in the Great Lakes-Upper St. Lawrence DU. Furthermore, some of the range in this area lies within Quetico Provincial Park where the species is largely protected from these influences. Populations of this DU are probably stable, although the spread of invasive species may be having negative impact on Northern Sunfish (see Invasive Species in Threats section).

Population trends for the Great Lakes-Upper St. Lawrence DU are unclear. Trends in water quality are variable, even within watersheds. Water quality has been stable in recent years in many subwatersheds such as the Lower North Sydenham and Bear Creek Headwaters (SCRCA 2013). Other subwatersheds (e.g. Middle East Sydenham and Bannockburn) have experienced improved water quality in recent years (SCRCA 2013; Brock and Veliz 2013 respectively), while others (e.g. Brown Creek) have experienced deteriorating water quality (SCRCA 2013). Unfortunately, the sampling data are not informative regarding population trends through time.

Populations in Québec appear to be at greatest risk. Habitat degradation is severe in the Châteauguay and Yamaska rivers due to siltation and contaminant inputs (Simoneau 2007; Berryman 2008) and the species is considered to be rare (Jean-Franҫois Desroches, pers.comm.; Louis Bernatchez, pers. comm.). Unfortunately, the data available are not sufficient to infer quantitative population trends. For example, more than 50 percent (20 of 39) of Northern Sunfish records from Québec are from the Châteauguay watershed (Appendix 1). Electrofishing surveys conducted in that watershed in 1993 to measure fish diversity produced two Northern Sunfish at a single station. In 2006, additional electrofishing was conducted in the Châteauguay targeting Channel Darter (Percina copelandi). Although many stations were sampled, Northern Sunfish was not found (Marc-Antoine Couillard, pers. comm.). The small number of Northern Sunfish collected in recent years suggests a decline in IAO and EOO. The RSI network collected no Northern Sunfish despite sampling extensively over multiple years at locations that yielded Northern Sunfish historically (e.g. Lac St-Pierre, Lac, St-Louis, Lac St-François). Similarly, extensive sampling in the Yamaska River between 1987 and 1997 failed to find Northern Sunfish (Holm et al. 2001; COSEWIC 2013b). Even in the Châteauguay River, the watershed that has yielded the largest proportion of Québec records, the number of fish reported is small considering the magnitude of sampling that has been done. The weight of evidence suggests the species is declining in Québec. This is consistent with results from the threats calculator (Appendix 3), which indicates ongoing declines driven mainly by agricultural pollution.

Rescue Effect

Northern Sunfish is present in states bordering Canadian populations including Minnesota, Michigan (lower peninsula), Ohio, Pennsylvania and New York. The species has declined across much of Ohio (Trautman 1981), Michigan (Hubbs et al. 2004), and Illinois (Smith 1979). There is a gap separating populations in Minnesota from those in northwestern Ontario. Considering the low dispersal propensity of the species (Carlander 1977; Keenleyside 1978), there is little opportunity for rescue from the U.S. or between Canadian subpopulations in western Ontario and southern Ontario/Québec.


Threats and Limiting Factors

Overall threats impacts were assessed as low in DU1 and high-medium in DU2. Discussion of specific threats follow.

Turbidity and Sediment Loading

The most important threat to Northern Sunfish, particularly in the Great Lakes – Upper St, Lawrence DU, is habitat degradation caused by siltation and contaminants such as chloride (Appendix 2; Appendix 3). The species is sensitive to these stressors (Scott and Crossman 1973; Carlander 1977) and Trautman (1981) has described its widespread decline and replacement by Green Sunfish in Ohio as a result of these factors. In Canada, this threat is most acute in watercourses in southern Ontario and southern Québec, where the intensity of agriculture and other forms of development such as urbanization is high. These problems are well documented in the Sydenham River where most forest cover has been removed and approximately 85% of the watershed has been converted to agricultural use including widespread use of tile drainage (Staton et al. 2003). Turbidity was monitored by the Ontario Ministry of Environment and Energy over a 30-year period (1967-1996) and was found to be high, particularly in the north branch. In addition, high levels of suspended solids were accompanied by nutrient loading, particularly phosphate and nitrogen (Staton et al. 2003). Success of recent efforts to mitigate silt loading in the Sydenham River and other watersheds remains to be determined (Erin Carroll, pers. comm.).

Rivers in southern Québec are also affected by intensive agricultural development and urbanization. Land use in the Châteauguay watershed is dominated by increasingly intensive agriculture (72% of the surface area; Simoneau 2007). Similarly, approximately 47% of the Yamaska River watershed is devoted to intensive agriculture (Berryman 2008) and contains significant urban areas. Consequently, water quality in much of both systems is poor with high levels of turbidity and contaminants.

Invasive Species

The most likely invasive species to threaten Northern Sunfish in the Great Lakes-Upper St. Lawrence DU is Round Goby (Neogobius melanostomus), which was first reported in Lake St. Clair in 1990. The species has spread throughout the Great Lakes (Kornis et al. 2012) and the St. Lawrence, and has invaded watersheds occupied by Northern Sunfish including the Trent, Moira (Scott Reid, pers. comm.), Sydenham, Ausable, Thames, and Grand rivers (Poos et al. 2010). Although Round Goby has had negative impact on benthic species (e.g. nest predation), its impact on Northern Sunfish remains to be determined.

Expansion of the ranges of predatory Largemouth Bass (Micropterus salmoides), and Smallmouth Bass (M. dolomieu) may threaten Northern Sunfish in the Saskatchewan-Nelson DU (Crossman and Buerschaper 1976; Brown et al. 2009a, b). Green Sunfish is also experiencing range expansion in northwestern Ontario. This species is more tolerant of elevated turbidity than Northern Sunfish and has replaced the latter in some Ohio watercourses where turbidity has increased (Trautman 1981). Green Sunfish is an aggressive competitor, and when introduced elsewhere, has frequently been implicated in significant disruption of native fish communities (e.g. Lemly 1985; Olden and Poff 2005). The ultimate impact of these range extensions is not known. Another invasive species that may negatively affect Northern Sunfish in northwest Ontario is Rusty Crayfish (Orconectes rusticus). This large, aggressive species originates from the Ohio Valley and may degrade habitat used by Northern Sunfish by consuming large amounts of aquatic vegetation (Brian Jackson, pers. comm.).

Angling and Bait Fishery

Angling for Northern Sunfish is not prohibited in Ontario. Although the species is small, and therefore not generally targeted by anglers, it is sometimes caught incidentally by anglers fishing for basses or larger sunfishes. It is easily captured and is potentially harmed or killed in the process. Overall, the impact of angling in not known.

Annual sales of baitfishes in Ontario of approximately $14 million reflect the large-scale use of live bait by anglers (some 100 million fishes harvested; OMNR and BAO 2006). In addition to commercial sales, many anglers catch their own baitfishes (Drake and Mandrak 2014). Although regulations prohibit collection of species at risk for the bait industry, a certain level of bycatch of non-target species occurs. In a survey of retail bait outlets, Drake and Mandrak (2014) did not record Northern Sunfish among non-target species caught as bycatch, although three centrarchid species were noted. Furthermore, Northern Sunfish frequently co-occurs with Redfin Shiner (Lythrurus umbratilis), a legal baitfish species, suggesting the potential for bycatch. However, since the latter is seldom targeted by baitfishers, the risk of capturing Northern Sunfish as bycatch is probably low, but not zero (Andrew Drake, pers. comm. 2015). Use of live bait poses the additional threat of potential for introduction of invasive non-native species including pathogens.

Ornamental Fish Trade

A potential threat to Northern Sunfish is the ornamental fish trade (Meredith and Houston 1987). Breeding males are brilliantly pigmented and, therefore, desirable aquarium fish for some hobbyists. The species’ small size and interesting behaviour add to its attraction. Longear Sunfish is offered for sale by at least one supplier of aquarium fishes in Taiwan. Although the origin of the stock is unknown, it could actually be Northern Sunfish. The scope and severity of this threat are unknown, but probably very low.

Limiting Factors

Perhaps the most important limiting factor for Northern Sunfish is its restricted movement within, and presumably, among watersheds. The species is considered to be a poor colonizer and is slow to repopulate habitat following its removal (Carlander 1977). Its low tolerance of poor water quality can also be considered a limiting factor.

Number of Locations

Siltation and pollution, the most important threats, emanate from numerous point and non-point sources. The number of locations can therefore be considered to be the number of watersheds occupied. This number is uncertain; however, there are clearly many more than ten (threshold for quantitative criteria).


Protection, Status and Ranks

Legal Protection and Status

Northern Sunfish was previously assessed by COSEWIC as Not at Risk (Meredith and Houston 1987). It is, therefore, not currently listed under the Canadian Species at Risk Act. Northern Sunfish can be legally taken as a sport fish and is subject to catch and possession limits. It is therefore protected under the federal Fisheries Act, particularly in waters supporting other game and/or commercial species.

In Ontario, Northern Sunfish is considered a “Sunfish” under provincial fishing regulations, so catch limits apply. Destruction or alteration of riparian areas and wetlands are regulated and protected under the following: Conservation Authorities Act, Provincial Planning Act, Canadian Environmental Assessment Act, and Water Resources Act. The Ontario Conservation Authorities Act is intended to protect aquatic habitat through the creation of conservation authorities, which promote integrated watershed management and conservation through projects such as tree planting, wetland creation, and erosion control (see Habitat Trends).

In Québec, it is included (as L. megalotis) on the Liste des espèces susceptibles d’être désignées menacées ou vulnérables (list of wildlife species likely to be designated threatened or vulnerable) in accordance with the Loi sur les espèces menacées ou vulnérables (RLRQ, c E-12.01) (LEMV) (Act respecting threatened or vulnerable species) (CQLR, c E-12.01).

In the United States, it is not on the List of Endangered and Threatened Wildlife and Plants.

Non-Legal Status and Ranks

Northern Sunfish is not listed on the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species and has no American Fisheries Society status. NatureServe (NatureServe 2014) rankings of Northern Sunfish in various jurisdictions are shown below.

Global
G5 (Secure
Canada
N3 (Vulnerable)
Ontario
S3 (vulnerable)
Québec
S2 (imperilled)
U.S. - N5
Illinois, Indiana, Minnesota, Ohio, Pennsylvania - SNR (Not Ranked)

Michigan ranks L. megalotis as S5 (widespread and common) while Wisconsin ranks the species as S2. These ranks presumably refer to L. peltastes as L. megalotis does not occur in either state.

Habitat Protection and Ownership

Recent changes to the federal Fisheries Act relating to habitat raise uncertainty about future protection of this species. Most of the land base in watersheds supporting Northern Sunfish in southern Ontario and Québec is privately owned, although some is publicly owned (e.g. Pinery Provincial Park, Point Pelee National Park). Much of northwestern Ontario is crown land, notably Quetico Provincial Park.


Acknowledgements and Authorities Contacted

Information provided by the following authorities/agencies is acknowledged: Fisheries and Oceans Canada (Burlington, Winnipeg, Sault Ste. Marie), Ministère des Forêts, de la Faune et des Parcs du Québec, Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry, Royal Ontario Museum, Canadian Museum of Nature, Parks Canada, Upper Thames Conservation Authority, St. Clair Region Conservation Authority, Ausable Bayfield Conservation Authority, Quinte Conservation Authority, and Quetico Provincial Park. Brian Jackson provided unpublished length/age data from Quetico Provincial Park. Dr. John Lyons (Wisconsin DNR) is acknowledged for permission to use the global distribution map (Figure 2). Several individuals provided thorough reviews of an earlier version of the report, including Nick Mandrak, James Grant, Mark Ridgway, and personnel from DFO, MFFP, and MNRF. Jenny Wu and Alain Filion prepared the maps and calculated EOO and IAO.

Authorities Contacted

Muriel Andraea, St. Clair Region Conservation Authority

Louis Bernatchez, Université Laval

Lynn Bouvier, Fisheries and Oceans Canada

Erin Carroll, St. Clair Region Conservation Authority

Brian Code, Canadian Museum of Nature

Marc Antoine Couillard, Ministère des Forêts de la Faune et des Parcs du Québec

Jean-Franҫois Desroches, CEGEP Sherbrooke

Andrew Drake, University of Toronto

Margaret Docker, University of Manitoba

Isabelle Gauthier, Ministère des Forêts, de la Faune et des Parcs du Québec

James Grant, Concordia University

Erling Holm, Royal Ontario Museum

John Jimmo, St. Clair Region Conservation Authority

Nick Mandrak, University of Toronto

Brad McNevin, Quinte Conservation Authority

Patrick Nantel, Parks Canada

Tom Pratt, Fisheries and Oceans Canada

Scott Reid, Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry

John Schwindt, Upper Thames River Conservation Authority

Doug Watkinson, Fisheries and Oceans Canada


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Hall-Armstrong, J., A.G. Harris, and R.F. Foster. 1996. Fish Use of Wetlands in Northwestern Ontario: A Literature Review and Bibliography. Northwest Sci. & Technol., Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources, Thunder Bay, Ontario. TR-90 54 pp + Appendices.

Holm, E., P. Dumont, J. Leclerc, G. Roy, and E.J. Crossman. 2001. COSEWIC status report on the bridle shiner Notropis bifrenatus in Canada. Committee on the Status of Endangered Wildlife in Canada. 19 pp.

Holm, E., N. Mandrak and M. Burridge. 2010. The ROM Field Guide to the Freshwater Fishes of Ontario. Royal Ontario Museum, Toronto, Ontario. 464 pp.

Hubbs, C.L. and G.P. Cooper. 1935. Age and growth of the long-eared and green sunfishes in Michigan. Papers of the Michigan Academy of Science, Arts, and Letters 20:669-696.

Hubbs, C.L., K.F. Lagler, and G.R. Smith. 2004. Fishes of the Great Lakes Region. University of Michigan Press. Ann Arbor. 276 pp.

Jackson, B. Personal communication. January 2016. Biologist, Quetico Provincial Park, Ontario.

Jennings, M.J. 2013. Longear Sunfish, Lepomis megalotis. Online account in: J. Lyons, editor. Fishes of Wisconsin E-Book. Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources, Madison, and U.S. Geological Survey, Middleton, WI. accessed on 1 January 2015.

Jennings, M.J. and D.P. Philipp. 1992a. Genetic variation in the longear sunfish (Lepomis megalotis). Canadian Journal of Zoology 70:1673-1680.

Jennings, M.J. and D.P. Philipp. 1992b. Female choice and male competition in longear sunfish Lepomis megalotis. Behavioral Ecology 3:84-94.

Jennings, M.J. and D.P. Philipp. 1994. Biotic and abiotic factors affecting early life history intervals of stream-dwelling sunfish. Environmental Biology of Fishes 39-153-159.

Keenleyside, M.H.A. 1972. Intraspecific intrusions into nests of spawning longear sunfish (Pisces: Centrarchidae). Copeia 1972:272-278.

Keenleyside, M.H.A. 1978. Reproductive isolation between Pumpkinseed (Lepomis gibbosus) and Longear Sunfish (L. megalotis)(Centrarchidae) in the Thames River, southwestern Ontario. Journal of the Fisheries Research Board of Canada 35:131-135.

Kornis, M.S., N. Mercado-Silva, and M.J. Vander Zanden. 2012. Twenty years of invasion: a review of round goby Neogobius melanostomus biology, spread and ecological implications. Journal of Fish Biology 80:235-285.

Lemly, A.D. 1985. Suppression of native fish populations by green sunfish in first-order streams of Piedmont North California. Transactions of the American Fisheries Society 114:705-712.

Lyons, J. 1984. Fishes of the upper Trout River, Vilas County, Wisconsin. Transactions of the Wisconsin Academy of Sciences, Arts and Letters. 72:201-211.

Mandrak, N.E. and E.J. Crossman. 1992. Postglacial dispersal of freshwater fishes into Ontario. Canadian Journal of Zoology 70:2247-2259.

Meredith, G.N. and J.J. Houston. 1987. COSEWIC status report on the Northern Sunfish Lepomis peltastes in Canada in Status Report on the Longear Sunfish Lepomis megalotis in Canada. Committee on the Status of Endangered Wildlife in Canada. 17 pp.

NatureServe. 2014. NatureServe Explorer: An online encyclopedia of life. Version 7.1. NatureServe, Arlington, Virginia. (Accessed January 6, 2015).

Olden, J.D. and N.L. Poff. 2005. Long-term trends of native and non-native fish faunas in the American Southwest. Animal Biodiversity and Conservation 28:75-89.

OMNR (Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources) and BAO (Bait Association of Ontario) 2006. The commercial bait industry in Ontario: statistical report, 2005. Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources, Peterborough, Ontario, Canada.

Page, L.M., H. Espinosa-Pérez, L.T. Findley, C.R. Gilbert, R.N Lea, N.E. Mandrak, R.L. Mayden, and J.S. Nelson. 2013. Common and Scientific Names of Fishes from the United States, Canada, and Mexico. 7th Edition, American Fisheries Society, Special Publication 34.

Page, L.M. and B.M Burr. 2011. Peterson Field Guide to Freshwater Fishes of North America North of Mexico. 2nd Edition, Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, Boston, New York. 663 pp.

Poos, M., A.J. Dextrase, A.N. Schwalb, and J.D. Ackerman. 2010. Secondary invasion of the round goby into high diversity Great Lakes tributaries and species at risk hotspots: potential new concerns for endangered freshwater species. Biological Invasions 12:1269-1284.

Reid, S. 2015. Email communication. January 2015. Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources & Forestry, Peterborough, Ontario.

Scott, W.B. and E.J Crossman. 1973. Freshwater Fishes of Canada. Journal of the Fisheries Research Board of Canada, Bulletin 181.

Simoneau, M. 2007. État de l’écosystème aquatique du basin versant de la rivière Châteauguay: faits saillant 2001-2004, Québec, ministère du Développement durable, de l’Environment et des Parcs, Direction du suivi de l’état de l’environment, ISBN 978-2-550-50193-0 (PDF), 16 pp.

Smith, P.W. 1979. The Fishes of Illinois. University of Illinois Press, Champaign.

SCRCA. 2013. St. Clair Region Conservation Authority Watershed Report card 2013. Available at http://www.scrca.on.ca/about-us/2013-watershed-report-cards/.

Staton, S.K., A. Dextrase, J.L. Metcalf-Smith, J. DiMaio, M. Nelson, J. Parish, B. Kilgour, and E. Holm. 2003. Status and trends of Ontario’s Sydenham River ecosystem in relation to aquatic species at risk. Environmental Monitoring and Assessment 88:283-310.

Trautman, M.B. 1981. The Fishes of Ohio. Ohio State University Press. Columbus. 966 pp.

UTRCA. 2012. Upper Thames River Conservation Watershed Report Cards.


Biographical Summary of Report Writers

Tim Birt is a Research Associate and Adjunct Assistant Professor at Queen’s University. His research activities are currently focused on population genetics and evolution of seabirds. He has also worked with fishes, especially Atlantic Salmon. Tim has authored or co-authored three COSEWIC status reports.


Collections Examined

None.


Appendix 1: Northern Sunfish records from Ontario and Québec.

Many entries represent more than one individual captured. Sources include: Canadian Museum of Nature (CMN), Royal Ontario Museum (ROM), Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry (MNRF), Fisheries and Oceans Canada (DFO), Ministère des Forêts, de la Faune et des Parcs du Québec (MFFP), and St. Clair Region Conservation Authority (SCRCA).

DU1 - Saskatchewan-Nelson
DateSpecimen IDWatercourseSource
08-Jul-60CMNFI 1965-0030.2Burditt LakeCMN
17-Jun-70CMNFI 1970-0141.3Rainy River DistrictCMN
08-Jul-6021643Burditt LakeROM
09-Jun-6926748Cirrus LakeROM
26-Jun-6726835Darky LakeROM
Aug-6726923Lake of The WoodsROM
22-Aug-6926951Caviar LakeROM
08-Sep-7027354Bart LakeROM
06-Jun-7127776Quetico LakeROM
18-Jul-7127855Melin LakeROM
23-Jul-7127857Mahon LakeROM
23-Jul-7127858Mahon LakeROM
25-Jun-7528659Little Roland LakeROM
15-Jul-7330216Lake No 190ROM
08-Jun-7430542Kakagi LakeROM
03-Jun-7632231Corn LakeROM
31-Jul-7033067Weld LakeROM
02-Aug-7033068Ryckman LakeROM
05-Jul-7835953Deacon LakeROM
19-Jul-7936408Unnamed LakeROM
20-Aug-7938015Shoal LakeROM
29-Jul-8041604Redhorse LakeROM
17-Jul-8352259Birch LakeROM
17-Jul-8352262Birch LakeROM
03-Aug-8352263Tourist Lake (Nl)ROM
03-Aug-8352264Tourist Lake (Nl)ROM
27-Aug-8557621Wawapus LakeROM
27-Aug-8557623Wawapus LakeROM
06-Jun-8789429ShingwakROM
07-Aug-80-Darby CreekROM
20-Jul-88-Osipasinni LakeROM
19-Jul-88-Osipasinni LakeROM
19-Jul-88-Osipasinni LakeROM
15-Jul-85-Kramer LakeROM
19-Jul-88-Osipasinni Lake (Nl)ROM
20-Jul-88-Osipasinni Lake (Nl)ROM
20-Jul-88-Osipasinni Lake (Nl)ROM
06-Aug-87-(NL) Lake VF 55-08ROM
28-Jul-86-Noonan LakeROM
27-Aug-85-Wawapus LakeROM
18-Jul-88-Osipasinni Lake (Nl)ROM
06-Aug-87-(NL) Lake VF 55-08ROM
05-Jul-84-Lowry LakeROM
02-Jul-88-Hectorine LakeROM
02-Aug-83-Sandhill LakeROM
09-Jul-87-Forrest LakeROM
20-Jun-83-Newman LakeROM
11-Jun-83-Backlawrence Lake (Nl)ROM
09-Jun-83-Little Moose Lake (Nl)ROM
05-Jul-84-Lowry LakeROM
16-Jul-85-Kramer LakeROM
30-Jun-87-BeggsROM
08-Jul-87-Forrest LakeROM
07-Jul-87-Forrest LakeROM
01-Jul-87-BeggsROM
19-Aug-87-MoosehornROM
10-Jul-86-Manitumeig LakeROM
19-May-85-Loonhaunt LakeROM
21-May-85-Loonhaunt LakeROM
2008-201415-4430-54221Burditt LakeMNRF
2008-201415-4632-54287Loonhaunt Lake>MNRF
2008-201415-6052-53411Sarah LakeMNRF
DU2 - Great Lakes - Upper St. Lawrence
DateSpecimen IDWatercourseSource
26-Jul-122012-CH-ESD-SYD260712-005ASydenham RiverDFO
21-Aug-122012-FMOS-SR210812-011ASydenham RiverDFO
01-Aug-122012-GPND010812-001ABeaver CreekDFO
01-Aug-122012-GPND010812-002ABeaver CreekDFO
02-Aug-122012-GPND020812-001ABeaver CreekDFO
02-Aug-122012-GPND020812-002ABeaver CreekDFO
03-Jul-122012-GPND030712-001ABeaver CreekDFO
03-Aug-122012-GPND030812-001ABeaver CreekDFO
03-Aug-122012-GPND030812-002ABeaver CreekDFO
04-Jul-122012-GPND040712-001ABeaver CreekDFO
05-Jul-122012-GPND050712-001ABeaver CreekDFO
11-Jul-122012-GPND110712-002ABeaver CreekDFO
13-Jun-122012-GPND130612-001ABeaver CreekDFO
13-Jul-122012-GPND130712-001ABeaver CreekDFO
13-Jul-122012-GPND130712-002ABeaver CreekDFO
15-Jun-122012-GPND150612-002ABeaver CreekDFO
18-Jun-122012-GPND180612-001ABeaver CreekDFO
18-Jun-122012-GPND180612-002ABeaver CreekDFO
18-Jul-122012-GPND180712-001ABeaver CreekDFO
19-Jul-122012-GPND190712-001ABeaver CreekDFO
19-Jul-122012-GPND190712-003ABeaver CreekDFO
20-Jun-122012-GPND200612-001ABeaver CreekDFO
23-Jul-122012-GPND230712-001ABeaver CreekDFO
24-Jul-122012-GPND240712-001ABeaver CreekDFO
25-Jun-122012-GPND250612-001ABeaver CreekDFO
30-Jul-122012-GPND300712-001ABeaver CreekDFO
31-Jul-122012-GPND310712-002ABeaver CreekDFO
23-Jul-122012-LCS-HURON230712-001AOld Ausable ChannelDFO
24-Jul-122012-LCS-HURON240712-002AOld Ausable ChannelDFO
24-Jul-122012-LCS-HURON240712-004AOld Ausable ChannelDFO
19-Sep-122012-SLCC190912-112AEast Sydenham RiverDFO
25-Jun-132013-AC-MON-CEDAR250613-001BCedar CreekDFO
07-Aug-132013-PNM-LSCD070813-006AEast Otter CreekDFO
09-Jul-132013-PNM-LSCD090713-001CWest Otter CreekDFO
09-Jul-132013-PNM-LSCD090713-002CWest Otter CreekDFO
19-Jun-132013-SLCC-DTR190613-121ADetroit RiverDFO
19-Jun-132013-SLCC-DTR190613-122ADetroit RiverDFO
23-Sep-02AUCR02-01-01-BSAusable ChannelDFO
23-Sep-02AUCR02-01-01-WT/MTAusable ChannelDFO
24-Sep-02AUCR02-01-02-BEFAusable ChannelDFO
23-Sep-02AUCR02-01-02-WT/MTAusable ChannelDFO
24-Sep-02AUCR02-01-03-BEFAusable ChannelDFO
23-Sep-02AUCR02-01-03-WT/MTAusable ChannelDFO
24-Sep-02AUCR02-01-04-BEFAusable ChannelDFO
23-Sep-02AUCR02-01-04-HNAusable ChannelDFO
23-Sep-02AUCR02-01-04-WT/MTAusable ChannelDFO
24-Sep-02AUCR02-02-01-BSAusable ChannelDFO
24-Sep-02AUCR02-02-01-HNAusable ChannelDFO
24-Sep-02AUCR02-02-01-WT/MTAusable ChannelDFO
24-Sep-02AUCR02-02-02-BEFAusable ChannelDFO
24-Sep-02AUCR02-02-02-WT/MTAusable ChannelDFO
24-Sep-02AUCR02-02-03-WT/MTAusable ChannelDFO
24-Sep-02AUCR02-02-04-HNAusable ChannelDFO
24-Sep-02AUCR02-02-04-WT/MTAusable ChannelDFO
25-Sep-02AUCR02-03-01-BSAusable ChannelDFO
25-Sep-02AUCR02-03-01-WT/MTAusable ChannelDFO
25-Sep-02AUCR02-03-02-BSAusable ChannelDFO
25-Sep-02AUCR02-03-02-HNAusable ChannelDFO
25-Sep-02AUCR02-03-02-WT/MTAusable ChannelDFO
25-Sep-02AUCR02-03-03-BEFAusable ChannelDFO
25-Sep-02AUCR02-03-03-HNAusable ChannelDFO
25-Sep-02AUCR02-03-03-WT/MTAusable ChannelDFO
25-Sep-02AUCR02-03-04-WT/MTAusable ChannelDFO
26-Sep-02AUCR02-04-01-WT/MTAusable ChannelDFO
26-Sep-02AUCR02-04-02-BEFAusable ChannelDFO
26-Sep-02AUCR02-04-02-BSAusable ChannelDFO
26-Sep-02AUCR02-04-02-WT/MTAusable ChannelDFO
26-Sep-02AUCR02-04-03-BEFAusable ChannelDFO
26-Sep-02AUCR02-04-03-HNAusable ChannelDFO
26-Sep-02AUCR02-04-03-WT/MTAusable ChannelDFO
26-Sep-02AUCR02-04-04-HNAusable ChannelDFO
26-Sep-02AUCR02-04-04-WT/MTAusable ChannelDFO
07-Jul-04AUCR04BP070704005Old Ausable ChannelDFO
14-Jul-04AUCR04BP140704009Little Ausable RiverDFO
21-Jul-04AUCR04BP210704016Ausable RiverDFO
23-Jul-04AUCR04BP230704019Ausable RiverDFO
12-Jul-04AUCR04BS120704006Ausable RiverDFO
15-Jul-04AUCR04BS150704011Ausable RiverDFO
15-Jul-04AUCR04BS150704012Ausable RiverDFO
09-Jul-04AUCR04SN090704017Old Ausable ChannelDFO
09-Jul-04AUCR04SN090704018Old Ausable ChannelDFO
12-Aug-04AUCR04SN120804001Old Ausable ChannelDFO
18-Aug-04AUCR04SN180804001Old Ausable ChannelDFO
18-Aug-04AUCR04SN180804002Old Ausable ChannelDFO
18-Aug-04AUCR04SN180804003Old Ausable ChannelDFO
18-Aug-04AUCR04SN180804004Old Ausable ChannelDFO
18-Aug-04AUCR04SN180804005Old Ausable ChannelDFO
18-Aug-04AUCR04SN180804006Old Ausable ChannelDFO
18-Aug-04AUCR04SN180804007Old Ausable ChannelDFO
18-Aug-04AUCR04SN180804008Old Ausable ChannelDFO
18-Aug-04AUCR04SN180804009Old Ausable ChannelDFO
18-Aug-04AUCR04SN180804010Old Ausable ChannelDFO
18-Aug-04AUCR04SN180804011Old Ausable ChannelDFO
18-Aug-04AUCR04SN180804012Old Ausable ChannelDFO
18-Aug-04AUCR04SN180804013Old Ausable ChannelDFO
19-Oct-04AUCR04SN191004002Old Ausable ChannelDFO
20-Oct-04AUCR04SN201004001Old Ausable ChannelDFO
09-Aug-07AUS07-090807-001Ausable RiverDFO
09-Aug-07AUS07-090807-003Ausable RiverDFO
14-Aug-07AUS07-140807-002Ausable RiverDFO
23-Jul-07AUS07-230707-001Ausable RiverDFO
25-Jul-07AUS07-250707-001Ausable RiverDFO
26-Jul-07AUS07-260707-003Ausable RiverDFO
29-Aug-07AUS07-290807-004Old Ausable ChannelDFO
28-Aug-02AUSR02-001Ausable RiverDFO
29-Aug-02AUSR02-002Ausable RiverDFO
29-Aug-02AUSR02-004Ausable RiverDFO
28-Aug-02AUSR02-005Ausable RiverDFO
28-Aug-02AUSR02-007Ausable RiverDFO
29-Aug-02AUSR02-008Ausable RiverDFO
29-Aug-02AUSR02-016Ausable RiverDFO
28-Aug-02AUSR02-018Ausable RiverDFO
28-Aug-02AUSR02-022Ausable RiverDFO
13-Sep-02BEF02-MCK-001Muddy CreekDFO
18-Jul-02BEF02-SYD-004Sydenham RiverDFO
20-Aug-02BEF02-SYD-005Sydenham RiverDFO
08-Aug-02BEF02-SYD-006Sydenham RiverDFO
21-Aug-02BEF02-SYD-007Sydenham RiverDFO
20-Aug-03DTR03038CDetroit RiverDFO
23-Aug-03DTR03039Detroit RiverDFO
25-Aug-03DTR03TC003Turkey CreekDFO
25-Aug-03DTR03TC004Turkey CreekDFO
23-Jun-09ESDPG-SYD09-230609-001Sydenham RiverDFO
23-Jun-09ESDPG-SYD09-230609-002Sydenham RiverDFO
23-Jun-09ESDPG-SYD09-230609-005Sydenham RiverDFO
24-Jun-09ESDPG-SYD09-240609-004Fansher CreekDFO
25-Jun-09ESDPG-SYD09-250609-006Sydenham RiverDFO
08-Jul-09GPND09-080709-001Beaver CreekDFO
09-Jul-08GRRGP08-090708-005BGrand RiverDFO
09-Jul-08GRRGP08-090708-006BGrand RiverDFO
20-Oct-04GSD04BP201004004Sydenham RiverDFO
22-Aug-02HMM02-001Hillman MarshDFO
06-Aug-02MOXD02-MTR-001Belgrave CreekDFO
07-Aug-02MOXD02-MTR-002Maitland RiverDFO
29-Jul-02MOXD02-THR-002Fish CreekDFO
30-Jul-02MOXD02-THR-003Medway CreekDFO
30-Jul-02MOXD02-THR-004Fish CreekDFO
31-May-05OAC05-053105-001Old Ausable ChannelDFO
31-May-05OAC05-053105-003Old Ausable ChannelDFO
28-Jun-05OAC05-062805-001Old Ausable ChannelDFO
28-Jun-05OAC05-062805-002Old Ausable ChannelDFO
28-Jun-05OAC05-062805-003Old Ausable ChannelDFO
02-Aug-05OAC05-080205-001Old Ausable ChannelDFO
03-Aug-05OAC05-080305-001Old Ausable ChannelDFO
03-Aug-05OAC05-080305-002Old Ausable ChannelDFO
03-Aug-05OAC05-080305-004Old Ausable ChannelDFO
04-Aug-05OAC05-080405-001Old Ausable ChannelDFO
27-Jul-10PDAH-PNM-2010-270710-004BSydenham RiverDFO
27-Jul-10PDAH-PNM-2010-270710-005BSydenham RiverDFO
29-Jul-10PDAH-PNM-2010-290710-001AOtter CreekDFO
01-Jun-10PDAH-PNS-2010-010610-001AOld Ausable ChannelDFO
18-Jul-05PFBK05-071805-002Pefferlaw BrookDFO
20-Jul-05PFBK05-072005-006Pefferlaw BrookDFO
11-Oct-05PFBK05-101105-001Pefferlaw BrookDFO
11-Oct-05PFBK05-101105-007Pefferlaw BrookDFO
12-Oct-05PFBK05-101205-001Pefferlaw BrookDFO
12-Oct-05PFBK05-101205-002Pefferlaw BrookDFO
12-Oct-05PFBK05-101205-004Pefferlaw BrookDFO
12-Oct-05PFBK05-101205-005Pefferlaw BrookDFO
13-Oct-05PFBK05-101305-003Pefferlaw BrookDFO
13-Oct-05PFBK05-101305-006Pefferlaw BrookDFO
15-Nov-05PFBK05-111505-001Pefferlaw BrookDFO
15-Nov-05PFBK05-111505-002Pefferlaw BrookDFO
15-Nov-05PFBK05-111505-003Pefferlaw BrookDFO
15-Nov-05PFBK05-111505-006Pefferlaw BrookDFO
15-Nov-05PFBK05-111505-007Pefferlaw BrookDFO
20-Jul-05PFBK05-200705-005bPefferlaw BrookDFO
16-Aug-10PG10-160810-001ASydenham RiverDFO
16-Aug-10PG10-160810-001BSydenham RiverDFO
17-Aug-10PG10-170810-001ASydenham RiverDFO
17-Aug-10PG10-170810-001BSydenham RiverDFO
18-Aug-10PG10-180810-001ASydenham RiverDFO
20-Aug-10PG10-200810-001AEast Sydenham RiverDFO
27-Aug-10PG10-270810-001AEast Sydenham RiverDFO
11-Jul-07RCR07-071107-002cSydenham River trib.DFO
14-Jul-07RCR07-071407-0a1cGrand RiverDFO
07-Aug-07RCR07-080707-003aMaitland RiverDFO
07-Aug-07RCR07-080707-003dMaitland RiverDFO
07-Aug-07RCR07-080707-003eMaitland RiverDFO
16-Sep-03SYD091603-1BPEFEast Sydenham RiverDFO
16-Sep-03SYD091603-1SNEast Sydenham RiverDFO
16-Sep-03SYD091603-2SNEast Sydenham RiverDFO
23-Sep-10SYDTR10-230910-002ASydenham RiverDFO
04-Jul-05TWR05-070405-002Teeswater RiverDFO
04-Jul-05TWR05-070405-002silviaTeeswater RiverDFO
26-Oct-05TWR05-102605-001Teeswater RiverDFO
23-Aug-59CMNFI 1959-0334.9Lac St-PierreCMN
08-Oct-60CMNFI 1960-0508A.9Muskoka DistrictCMN
09-Aug-72CMNFI 1972-0179.17Bear CreekCMN
12-Aug-72CMNFI 1972-0197.14Sydenham RiverCMN
13-Aug-72CMNFI 1972-0201.17Bear CreekCMN
14-Aug-72CMNFI 1972-0207.12Fish CreekCMN
02-Aug-73CMNFI 1974-0046.12Fish CreekCMN
04-Aug-73CMNFI 1974-0056.9Thames RiverCMN
04-Aug-73CMNFI 1974-0058.3Thames RiverCMN
16-Aug-79CMNFI 1979-1009.1Maitland RiverCMN
13-Sep-79CMNFI 1979-1118.10Thames RiverCMN
22-Jul-82CMNFI 1982-0588.7East Sydenham RiverCMN
24-Jul-82CMNFI 1982-0604.6Gregory CreekCMN
16-Aug-79CMNFI 1986-0107.1Maitland RiverCMN
16-Aug-79CMNFI 1986-0108.1Maitland RiverCMN
16-Aug-79CMNFI 1986-0109.1Maitland RiverCMN
16-Aug-79CMNFI 1986-0110.1Maitland RiverCMN
16-Aug-79CMNFI 1986-0111.1Maitland RiverCMN
19-Jun-86CMNFI 1987-0223.8Cedar CreekCMN
02-Aug-13-Moira RiverMNRF
07-Aug-13-Trent RiverMNRF
08-Jul-13-Moira RiverMNRF
10-Sep-13-Moira RiverMNRF
10-Sep-13-Moira RiverMNRF
10-Sep-13-Moira RiverMNRF
15-Aug-13-Moira RiverMNRF
15-Aug-13-Moira RiverMNRF
19-Jul-13-Moira RiverMNRF
19-Aug-13-Moira RiverMNRF
19-Aug-13-Moira RiverMNRF
19-Aug-13-Moira RiverMNRF
20-Aug-13-Moira RiverMNRF
21-Aug-13-Moira RiverMNRF
23-Jul-13-Moira RiverMNRF
23-Jul-13-Moira RiverMNRF
23-Aug-13-Moira RiverMNRF
24-Jul-13-Moira RiverMNRF
24-Jul-13-Moira RiverMNRF
24-Jul-13-Moira RiverMNRF
24-Jul-13-Moira RiverMNRF
25-Jul-13-Moira RiverMNRF
25-Jul-13-Moira RiverMNRF
26-Jul-13-Moira RiverMNRF
27-Aug-13-Moira RiverMNRF
27-Aug-13-Moira RiverMNRF
27-Aug-13-Moira RiverMNRF
29-Aug-13-Moira RiverMNRF
29-Aug-13-Moira RiverMNRF
31-Jul-13-Moira RiverMNRF
31-Jul-13-Moira RiverMNRF
31-Jul-13-Moira RiverMNRF
31-Jul-13-Moira RiverMNRF
02-Sep-11-Trent RiverMNRF
21-Jun-414061Rivière Aux OutardesMFFP
21-Jun-4124210Ruisseau NortonMFFP
11-Jul-4119902Lac des Deux MontagnesMFFP
14-Sep-4613084Rivière DelisleMFFP
31-Jul-6326Rivière des AnglaisMFFP
08-Sep-64497Lac des Deux MontagnesMFFP
10-Sep-64457Lac des Deux MontagnesMFFP
10-Sep-64466Lac des Deux MontagnesMFFP
Jun-654033Rivière des OutaouaisMFFP
30-Jul-654656Rivière à la RaquetteMFFP
18-Aug-653970Rivière OuestMFFP
05-Aug-70399Lac BromeMFFP
03-Aug-7312294Lac St-LouisMFFP
30-Jul-7412226Lac St-LouisMFFP
07-May-7515435Ruisseau St-JeanMFFP
09-May-7515454Ruisseau St-JeanMFFP
22-Jul-75622Rivière ChâteauguayMFFP
24-Jul-75629Rivière ChâteauguayMFFP
20-Jul-76321Rivière ChâteauguayMFFP
26-Jul-76858Coulée Des PoissantMFFP
26-Jul-76867Ruisseau TurcotMFFP
26-Jul-76869La Grande DéchargeMFFP
27-Jul-76849Ruisseau PouliotMFFP
27-Jul-76855Le Grand MaraisMFFP
12-Aug-7645Ruisseau Howe-HolmesMFFP
12-Sep-8313098Rivière ChâteauguayMFFP
13-Sep-833898Rivière ChâteauguayMFFP
13-Sep-8313100Rivière ChâteauguayMFFP
16-Sep-833832Rivière ChâteauguayMFFP
13-Jun-88-Rivière des OutaouaisMFFP
01-Jan-89-Rivière des OutaouaisMFFP
01-Jan-90-Rivière des OutaouaisMFFP
01-Jan-92-Rivière des OutaouaisMFFP
16-Sep-92-Rivière des OutaouaisMFFP
01-Nov-92-Rivière des OutaouaisMFFP
01-Nov-92-Rivière des OutaouaisMFFP
Nov-92290Lac St. PaulMFFP
13-Sep-9312837Rivière ChâteauguayMFFP
19500422CSThames RiverROM
192408153Georgian BayROM
10-Aug-3609286Ausable RiverROM
15-Jul-3609319Sydenham RiverROM
15-Jul-3609352Sydenham RiverROM
15-Jul-3609353Sydenham RiverROM
13/08/193609413Medway CreekROM
04-Aug-5517566Fanshawe LakeROM
10-Aug-5117887Blacks CreekROM
10-Aug-3418183Bayfield RiverROM
195820121Sauble River;Tara Creek;Sauble River TributaryROM
195022582Thames RiverROM
17-Aug-5323869Avon RiverROM
26-Aug-5323870Avon RiverROM
Aug-5024693Thames RiverROM
194724764Ausable RiverROM
195624839Saugeen RiverROM
23-Jul-4924948Nith RiverROM
31-May-6325752Maitland River;South Maitland RiverROM
07-Jul-6926797Ausable RiverROM
29-Jun-6926799Lake HuronROM
23-Jul-7329885Delisle RiverROM
24-Jul-7329943Delisle RiverROM
20-Jul-7329945Delisle RiverROM
30-Jul-7329967Boyle DrainROM
24-Jul-7329970Middle Maitland RiverROM
22-Jul-7329975Middle Maitland RiverROM
08-Aug-7329977Little Maitland RiverROM
30-Jul-7329980Middle Maitland RiverROM
07-Jun-7330053Raisin RiverROM
07-Jun-7330030Raisin River TributaryROM
08-Aug-7330033Little Maitland RiverROM
11-Aug-7330035Little Maitland RiverROM
17-Jun-7330205Middle Maitland RiverROM
22-Aug-7330236Maitland RiverROM
28-Jul-7330253Maitland RiverROM
14-Aug-7330287Flat CreekROM
27-Jul-7330291Kenny CreekROM
22-Aug-7330316Maitland RiverROM
15-Aug-7330327Maitland RiverROM
16-Aug-7330407Horner CreekROM
17-Aug-7330409Maitland RiverROM
15-Aug-7430759Little Ausable RiverROM
04-Jun-7430807Stoney CreekROM
04-Jun-7430814Stoney CreekROM
11-Jul-7430864Unnamed CreekROM
21-Jul-7430904-ROM
18-Aug-7430924UnknownROM
20-Aug-7430937Waubuno CreekROM
05-Oct-7736528Severn RiverROM
02-Jun-8242077Old Ausable ChannelROM
30-Jun-8754904Detroit RiverROM
13-Aug-3655433Medway CreekROM
10-Aug-8956965Sydenham RiverROM
Aug-8060235Severn RiverROM
28-Sep-9771024Old Ausable ChannelROM
28-Sep-9771028Old Ausable ChannelROM
28-Sep-9771090Old Ausable ChannelROM
27-Nov-9771169Flat CreekROM
12-Nov-9871815Fish CreekROM
20-Aug-9871973Otonabee RiverROM
16-Jun-0072369Avon RiverROM
16-Jun-0072422Avon RiverROM
15-Jun-0072423Black Creek tributaryROM
19-Jun-0172609Sydenham RiverROM
198375813Thames RiverROM
198375814Thames RiverROM
198375815Thames RiverROM
198375816Thames RiverROM
198375817Thames RiverROM
198375818Thames RiverROM
198375819Thames RiverROM
198375820Thames RiverROM
198375821Thames RiverROM
198375822Thames RiverROM
198375823Thames RiverROM
198375824Thames RiverROM
198375825Thames RiverROM
198375826Thames RiverROM
198375827Thames RiverROM
198375828Thames RiverROM
198375829Thames RiverROM
198375830Thames RiverROM
Sep-8375831Middle Thames RiverROM
10-Jun-0375862Moira RiverROM
28-Aug-0276688Ausable RiverROM
29-Aug-0276947Ausable RiverROM
28-Aug-0276956Ausable RiverROM
29-Aug-0276980Ausable RiverROM
04-Jul-0577267Teeswater RiverROM
28-Aug-0277413Ausable RiverROM
28-Aug-0277432Ausable RiverROM
29-Aug-0277667Ausable RiverROM
10-Jun-9778730Big CreekROM
198378811Thames RiverROM
198378812Thames RiverROM
25-Aug-0379781Turkey CreekROM
01-Jul-0580239Rivière ChâteauguayROM
20-Aug-0380802Detroit RiverROM
02-Jun-0481484Belle RiverROM
20-Jul-0582612Pefferlaw BrookROM
27-Aug-0882973Gloucester PoolROM
26-Oct-0585023Teeswater RiverROM
18-Jul-0589222Pefferlaw BrookROM
20-Jul-0589225Pefferlaw BrookROM
27-Jul-1089332Sydenham RiverROM
11-Oct-0589416Pefferlaw BrookROM
02-Jul-0293089Fansher CreekROM
26-Sep-0296447Old Ausable ChannelROM
30-Jul-0299759Fish CreekROM
16-Sep-03-East Sydenham RiverROM
25-Sep-02-Old Ausable ChannelROM
29-Jul-02-Fish CreekROM
26-Sep-02-Old Ausable ChannelROM
30-Jul-02-Medway CreekROM
24-Sep-02-Old Ausable ChannelROM
25-Sep-02-Old Ausable ChannelROM
26-Sep-02-Old Ausable ChannelROM
10-Sep-03-North Sydenham RiverROM
23-Sep-02-Ausable ChannelROM
25-Sep-02-Old Ausable ChannelROM
15-Sep-03-East Sydenham RiverROM
24-Jul-80-North Thames RiverROM
28-Sep-97-Old Ausable ChannelROM
04-Nov-99-Spring CreekROM
15-Jun-04-Fansher CreekROM
28-Jul-04-Whirl CreekROM
25-Sep-02-Old Ausable ChannelROM
25-Sep-02-Old Ausable ChannelROM
25-Sep-02-Old Ausable ChannelROM
26-Sep-02-Old Ausable ChannelROM
23-Jul-80-Flat CreekROM
11-Sep-03-North Sydenham RiverROM
26-Apr-00-Government Drain 5/6ROM
11-Sep-03-North Sydenham RiverROM
24-Sep-02-Ausable ChannelROM
26-Sep-02-Old Ausable ChannelROM
15-Sep-03-East Sydenham RiverROM
28-Jul-04-Black CreekROM
02-Jun-75-Medway CreekROM
24-Sep-02-Old Ausable ChannelROM
17-Jun-75-Sydenham RiverROM
26-Sep-02-Old Ausable ChannelROM
16-Sep-03-East Sydenham RiverROM
26-Sep-02-Old Ausable ChannelROM
07-Jun-82-Old Ausable ChannelROM
24-Sep-02-Ausable ChannelROM
06-Jun-82-Little Bear CreekROM
31-May-82-Middle Thames RiverROM
23-Sep-02-Old Ausable ChannelROM
26-Sep-02-Old Ausable ChannelROM
26-Sep-02-Old Ausable ChannelROM
24-Sep-02-Old Ausable ChannelROM
24-Sep-02-Old Ausable ChannelROM
07-Jun-82-Old Ausable ChannelROM
24-Sep-02-Old Ausable ChannelROM
16-Sep-03-East Sydenham RiverROM
25-Sep-02-Old Ausable ChannelROM
23-Sep-02-Ausable ChannelROM
23-Sep-02-Ausable ChannelROM
16-Jun-01ReleasedSydenham RiverROM
16-Jun-01ReleasedSydenham RiverROM
16-Jun-01ReleasedBlack CreekROM
15-Jun-00ReleasedBlack CreekROM
28-Sep-97ReleasedOld Ausable ChannelROM
18-Jun-01ReleasedSydenham RiverROM
17-Jun-01ReleasedSydenham RiverROM
08-Jul-02-East Sydenham RiverROM
23-May-02-Black CreekROM
26-Jun-02-Bear CreekROM
11-Jul-02-Sydenham River East BranchROM
24-Sep-0296443Ausable ChannelROM
26-Sep-0296452Old Ausable ChannelROM
24-Sep-0299507Old Ausable ChannelROM
06-Aug-0299512Belgrave CreekROM
07-Aug-0299514Maitland RiverROM
21-Jul-142014-AC-MON-COLDWATER210714-002CColdwater CreekDFO
21-Jul-142014-AC-MON-COLDWATER210714-003CColdwater CreekDFO
21-Jul-142014-AC-MON-COLDWATER210714-005CColdwater CreekDFO
22-Jul-142014-AC-MON-COLDWATER220714-001AColdwater CreekDFO
22-Jul-142014-AC-MON-COLDWATER220714-002CColdwater CreekDFO
23-Jul-142014-AC-MON-COLDWATER230714-003CColdwater CreekDFO
23-Jul-142014-AC-MON-COLDWATER230714-004CColdwater CreekDFO
23-Jul-142014-AC-MON-COLDWATER230714-005CColdwater CreekDFO
23-Jul-142014-AC-MON-COLDWATER230714-006CColdwater CreekDFO
24-Jul-142014-AC-MON-COLDWATER240714-002BColdwater CreekDFO
07-Jul-142014-AC-MON-LPB070714-003CLong Point BayDFO
15-Jul-142014-AC-MON-NAN150714-003ANanticoke CreekDFO
25-Jun-142014-AC-MON-RONDEAU250614-002CRondeau BayDFO
2008-201418-3741-49489Bob's LakeMNRF
2008-201417-6026-49666Gloucester PoolMNRF
24-Jul-01-Hardy CreekSCRCA
26-Jul-01-Sydenham RiverSCRCA
4-Oct-02-Sydenham RiverSCRCA
4-Oct-02-Sydenham RiverSCRCA
12-Jul-04-Coldstream ReservoirSCRCA
13-Jul-04-Bridgeview ReservoirSCRCA
13-Jul-04-Reservoir #1SCRCA
15-Jul-04-Area ReservoirSCRCA
6-Aug-04-Strathroy ReservoirSCRCA
6-Aug-04-Sydenham RiverSCRCA
21-Sep-05-Sydenham East Br.SCRCA
20-Jul-09-Sydenham East Br.SCRCA
20-Jul-09-Sydenham RiverSCRCA
20-Jul-09-Sydenham RiverSCRCA
21-Jul-09-Spring CreekSCRCA

Appendix 2: Threats Calculator for Saskatchewan-Nelson DU

Threats Assessment Worksheet

Species or Ecosystem Scientific Name:
Northern Sunfish, Lepomis peltastes-SK-Nelson DU
Element ID
-
Elcode
-
Date:
27/01/2015
Assessor(s):
John Post, Tim Birt, Nick Mandrak, Jim Grant, Scott Reid, Marc-Antoine Couillard Moderator: Dwayne Lepitzki
References:
Teleconference 12 Feb 2015
Overall Threat Impact Calculation Help:
Threat ImpactThreat Impact (descriptions)Level 1 Threat Impact Counts:
high range
Level 1 Threat Impact Counts:
low range
AVery High00
BHigh00
CMedium00
DLow11
-Calculated Overall Threat Impact:LowLow
Threats Assessment Worksheet Table.
#ThreatImpact
(calculated)
Scope
(next
10 Yrs)
Severity
(10 Yrs
or
3 Gen.)
TimingComments
1Residential and commercial development-----
1.1Housing and urban areas----not applicable
1.2Commercial and industrial areas----not applicabl
1.3Tourism and recreation areas----not applicable. No planned and KNOWN development in the next 10 yrs
2Agriculture and aquaculture-----
2.1Annual and perennial non-timber crops----not applicable. Considers physical impacts of agriculture on sunfish habitat (e.g. changes due to removal of riparian vegetation, channelization etc). Does not consider pollution/turbidity issues (see below).
2.2Wood and pulp plantations----not applicable
2.3Livestock farming and ranching----not applicable. No tramping known of.
2.4Marine and freshwater aquaculture----not applicable.
3Energy production and mining-----
3.1Oil and gas drilling----not applicable. No fracking
3.2Mining and quarrying----not applicable. Major mining out of range for this species.
3.3Renewable energy----not applicable.
4Transportation and service corridors-----
4.1Roads and railroads----not applicable.
4.2Utility and service lines----not applicable.
4.3Shipping lanes----not applicable.
4.4Flight paths----not applicable.
5Biological resource useNegligibleNegligible (<1%)Negligible (<1%)High (Continuing)-
5.1Hunting and collecting terrestrial animals----not applicable.
5.2Gathering terrestrial plants----not applicable.
5.3Logging and wood harvesting----not applicable.
5.4Fishing and harvesting aquatic resourcesNegligibleNegligible (<1%)Negligible (<1%)High (Continuing)Potential collection for aquarium trade and bait fishery bycatch but more likely a threat for other DU. Likely some angling mortality
6Human intrusions and disturbanceNegligibleSmall (1-10%)Negligible (<1%)High (Continuing)-
6.1Recreational activities----not applicable
6.2War, civil unrest and military exercises----not applicable
6.3Work and other activitiesNegligibleSmall (1-10%)Negligible (<1%)High (Continuing)Exposure to fisheries scientific collection in 1-2% of the lakes.
7Natural system modifications-----
7.1Fire and fire suppression----not applicable
7.2Dams and water management/use----Some hydroelectric development. Likely new dams will be constructed in the next 10 yrs. but only a small number. Existing dams alter water regimes but unlikely to negatively impact Northern Sunfish.
7.3Other ecosystem modifications----not applicable. siltation and elevated levels of turbidity accounted for under 9.
8Invasive and other problematic species and genes-----
8.1Invasive non-native/alien species----Impact of Round Goby invasion unknown but not applicable to this DU.
8.2Problematic native species----hybridization is not an issue for this species. Is possible but impact is unknown
8.3Introduced genetic material----not applicable.
9PollutionD-LowSmall (1-10%)Moderate - Slight (1-30%)High (Continuing)-
9.1Household sewage and urban waste waterNegligibleNegligible (<1%)Moderate - Slight (1-30%)High (Continuing)Chloride and pollutants are a major threat to this species. Urban development is generally highly correlated with increased concentrations of pollution but not high for this DU. Needs to be researched in terms of the actual level of impact of salt on this species.
9.2Industrial and military effluentsNegligibleNegligible (<1%)Moderate (11-30%)High (Continuing)-
9.3Agricultural and forestry effluentsNegligibleSmall (1-10%)Negligible (<1%)High (Continuing)Sedimentation is a big threat. Contaminants emanating from agricultural and other forms of development. Endocrine disruptors are present and problematic from pulp and paper mills. Present but unknown impact in this DU. Forestry effluents are negligible but remain a small threat more for this DU than the Eastern Ont DU. This threat is related more to forestry than agriculture. Negligible impact since forestry uses buffer zones to reduce impact.
9.4Garbage and solid waste----not applicable
9.5Air-borne pollutants----not applicable
9.6Excess energy----not applicable
10Geological events-----
10.1Volcanoes----not applicable
10.2Earthquakes/ tsunamis----not applicable
10.3Avalanches/landslides----not applicable
11Climate change and severe weather-----
11.1Habitat shifting and alteration----not applicable
11.2Droughts----not applicable
11.3Temperature extremes----not applicable. Warmer temperature likely positively affect this species. Centrarchids shifting northward - indication of warming of lakes.
11.4Storms and flooding----not applicable.

Classification of Threats adopted from IUCN-CMP, Salafsky et al. (2008).

Glossary

Impact
The degree to which a species is observed, inferred, or suspected to be directly or indirectly threatened in the area of interest. The impact of each threat is based on Severity and Scope rating and considers only present and future threats. Threat impact reflects a reduction of a species population or decline/degradation of the area of an ecosystem. The median rate of population reduction or area decline for each combination of scope and severity corresponds to the following classes of threat impact: Very High (75% declines), High (40%), Medium (15%), and Low (3%). Unknown: used when impact cannot be determined (e.g., if values for either scope or severity are unknown); Not Calculated: impact not calculated as threat is outside the assessment timeframe (e.g., timing is insignificant/negligible or low as threat is only considered to be in the past); Negligible: when scope or severity is negligible; Not a Threat: when severity is scored as neutral or potential benefit.
Scope
Proportion of the species that can reasonably be expected to be affected by the threat within 10 years. Usually measured as a proportion of the species' population in the area of interest. (Pervasive = 71–100%; Large = 31–70%; Restricted = 11–30%; Small = 1–10%; Negligible < 1%).
Severity
Within the scope, the level of damage to the species from the threat that can reasonably be expected to be affected by the threat within a 10-year or three-generation timeframe. Usually measured as the degree of reduction of the species' population. (Extreme = 71–100%; Serious = 31–70%; Moderate = 11–30%; Slight = 1–10%; Negligible < 1%; Neutral or Potential Benefit > 0%).
Timing
High = continuing; Moderate = only in the future (could happen in the short term [< 10 years or 3 generations]) or now suspended (could come back in the short term); Low = only in the future (could happen in the long term) or now suspended (could come back in the long term); Insignificant/Negligible = only in the past and unlikely to return, or no direct effect but limiting.

Appendix 3: Threats Calculator for Great Lakes-Upper St. Lawrence DU

Threats Assessment Worksheet

Species or Ecosystem Scientific Name:
Northern Sunfish, Lepomis peltastes_Great Lakes-St. Lawrence DU
Date:
27/01/2015
Assessor(s):
John Post, Tim Birt, Nick Mandrak, Jim Grant, Scott Reid, Marc-Antoine Couillard Moderator: Dwayne Lepitzki
References:
Teleconference 12 Feb 2015
Overall Threat Impact Calculation Help:
Threat ImpactThreat Impact (descriptions)Level 1 Threat Impact Counts:
high range
Level 1 Threat Impact Counts:
low range
AVery High00
BHigh10
CMedium01
DLow11
-Calculated Overall Threat Impact:HighMedium
Threats Assessment Worksheet Table.
#ThreatImpact
(calculated)
Scope
(next
10 Yrs)
Severity
(10 Yrs
or
3 Gen.)
TimingComments
1Residential and commercial development-----
1.1Housing and urban areas----not applicable
1.2Commercial and industrial areas----not applicable
1.3Tourism and recreation areas----not applicable. No planned and KNOWN development in the next 10 yrs.
2Agriculture and aquacultureD-LowRestricted - Small (1-30%)Moderate (11-30%)High (Continuing)-
2.1Annual and perennial non-timber cropsD-LowRestricted - Small (1-30%)Moderate (11-30%)High (Continuing)Considers physical impacts of agriculture on sunfish habitat (e.g. changes due to removal of riparian vegetation, channelization etc). Does not consider pollution/turbidity issues (see below). Intensification of row crops in Southern Ontario. Lessening in livestock farming. Intensification of pork production in Quebec but most of range has already been affected. Less in low intensity beef production replaced with hog farming. Remaining range of this DU is most likely to be impacted (Guelph to west of Lake St. Clair) for conversion to row crop to soy bean. Some of Quebec range may be historical given the lack of recent surveying in those areas to confirm presence. Regardless, threat is included based on precautionary principle. Farmers will likely try to cultivate up to water edge. Headwater transformation to tile drains as well as some drain maintenance (channelization of habitat). Threats impact is moderate. Decline in beef production has occurred in the past 10 yrs. Expert opinion is that beef cattle production is unlikely to increase in the Quebec area over the next 10 yrs. Hog farming likely to continue to intensify. Threat impact is pollution rather than habitat loss or modification.
2.2Wood and pulp plantations----not applicable
2.3Livestock farming and ranching----No trampling known of.
2.4Marine and freshwater aquaculture----not applicable.
3Energy production and mining-----
3.1Oil and gas drilling----not applicable. No fracking
3.2Mining and quarrying----not applicable. Major mining out of range for this species.
3.3Renewable energy----not applicable.
4Transportation and service corridorsNegligibleNegligible (<1%)Negligible (<1%)High (Continuing)-
4.1Roads and railroadsNegligibleNegligible (<1%)Negligible (<1%)High (Continuing)Some road development planned in the next 10 yrs. in and around the Montreal area.
4.2Utility and service lines----not applicable.
4.3Shipping lanes----not applicable.
4.4Flight paths----not applicable.
5Biological resource useNegligibleLarge (31-70%)Negligible (<1%)High (Continuing)-
5.1Hunting and collecting terrestrial animals----Not applicable.
5.2Gathering terrestrial plants----Not applicable.
5.3Logging and wood harvesting----Not applicable.
5.4Fishing and harvesting aquatic resourcesNegligibleLarge (31-70%)Negligible (<1%)High (Continuing)Active licensed bait fishery in southern Ontario. Collection for aquarium trade also a threat. Live bait more or less prohibited in Quebec with new restrictive regulations pending. Likely some level of angling mortality.
6Human intrusions and disturbanceNegligibleLarge (31-70%)Negligible (<1%)High (Continuing)-
6.1Recreational activitiesNegligibleSmall (1-10%)Negligible (<1%)High (Continuing)Boating is a threat in Ontario and Quebec.
6.2War, civil unrest and military exercises----not applicable
6.3Work and other activitiesNegligibleNegligible (<1%)Extreme (71-100%)High (Continuing)-
7Natural system modifications-----
7.1Fire and fire suppression----not applicable
7.2Dams and water management/use----Beauharnois dam planned for development but unknown impact. Trent River and Moira River populations fragmented but unaffected by flow regime. Likely a few new dams will be constructed in the next 10 yrs. Existing dams alter water regimes but unlikely to negatively impact Northern Sunfish. Dams stabilize flow patterns that benefit the species. No known effect of the Beauharnois dam.
7.3Other ecosystem modificationsNegligibleNegligible (<1%)Extreme (71-100%)High (Continuing)Phragmites present in Ontario as well as Quebec. Small range of this DU exposed to Phragmites. Impact is system modification from aquatic to terrestrial. Siltation and elevated turbidity accounted for under 9.
8Invasive and other problematic species and genesUnknownPervasive (71-100%)UnknownHigh (Continuing)-
8.1Invasive non-native/alien speciesUnknownRestricted (11-30%)UnknownHigh (Continuing)Impact of Round Goby invasion unknown but applicable to this DU. Some cases have shown RG to be beneficial. Threat impact is therefore unknown.
8.2Problematic native speciesUnknownPervasive (71-100%)UnknownHigh (Continuing)Hybridization in Southern Ontario but no documented trends of decline in population. Therefore threat severity is unknown. Sterilization has not been recorded. More research on impacts of hybridization for this species is necessary.
8.3Introduced genetic material----not applicable.
9PollutionBC High-MediumLarge (31-70%)Serious - Moderate (11-70%)High (Continuing)-
9.1Household sewage and urban waste waterC-MediumLarge (31-70%)Moderate (11-30%)High (Continuing)Chloride and pollutants are a major threat to this species. Urban development is generally highly correlated with increased concentrations of pollution but not high for this DU. Needs to be researched in terms of the actual level of impact of chloride on this species. Higher pollution impact for this DU due to proximity to urban centres. Nature of concentrations in effluent is different in this DU in comparison to the Sask-Nelson River DU. Turbidity influences severity of threat for pollutants
9.2Industrial and military effluentsNegligibleNegligible (<1%)Moderate (11-30%)High (Continuing)PCB' s in Yamaska but levels declining. Possibility of Oil Refinery development. London range impacted by industrial effluent (general manufacturing) in the range of 100's of spills
9.3Agricultural and forestry effluentsBC High-MediumLarge (31-70%)Serious - Moderate (11-70%)High (Continuing)Sedimentation is a big threat. Contaminants emanating from agricultural and other forms of development. Endocrine disruptors are present from pulp and paper mills. Present but unknown impact in this DU. Forestry effluents are negligible. Threat is related more to agriculture than forestry for this DU.
9.4Garbage and solid waste----not applicable
9.5Air-borne pollutants----not applicable
9.6Excess energy----not applicable
10Geological events-----
10.1Volcanoes----not applicable
10.2Earthquakes/ tsunamis----not applicable
10.3Avalanches/landslides----not applicable
11Climate change and severe weather-----
11.1Habitat shifting and alteration----not applicable
11.2Droughts----not applicable
11.3Temperature extremes----not applicable. Warmer temperature likely positive for this species. Centrarchids shifting northward- indication of climate warming.
11.4Storms and flooding----Changes to flow regimes. Northern Sunfish relies on low water flow. In one area, storm felled trees, resulted in additional woody debris, decreased flow, increased siltation, unknown impact.

Classification of Threats adopted from IUCN-CMP, Salafsky et al. (2008).