Community Fishers Program
Our accessible ocean data collection tools are designed for citizen scientists and Indigenous communities.

ONC’s Community Fishers mobile app makes it possible for vessel operators, mariners, and fishers to collect important oceanographic data. Using a conductivity, temperature, depth (CTD) instrument connected to a mobile device, the app simplifies the collection and transfer of water column data to the Oceans 3.0 portal.

Pacheedaht First Nations Community Fishers team members Leon Jones and Guy Louie sample water column data in the Strait of Georgia during a training session with ONC’s Tanner Owca (right) in January 2020.

Data gathered by community fishers can be accessed via this dashboard and Oceans 3.0, providing insight into ocean conditions and marine habitat, and establishing baseline data for our changing ocean.

Our geospatial mapping tool, launched in 2020, further enhances community fishers’ experience. This interactive interface displays data that have been quality assured and quality controlled (QAQC) by our data specialists in high-resolution water column profiles. The QAQC data are normally available in the geospatial map within 24-48 hours of it being sent by our partners to Oceans 3.0. The tool enables easy data access and download, with all data products documenting ownership of the data, following FAIR (Findable, Accessible, Interoperable and Reusable) and OCAP (Ownership, Control, Accessible and Possession) data principles. Community Fishers and the geospatial map tools are live projects and they continue to evolve for further user functionality based on feedback from our partners.

The Community Fishers program was launched in partnership with the Pacific Salmon Foundation in 2015, with a goal to understand the causes of decline in coho and Chinook salmon in the Salish Sea. Additional partners include the Iqaluit Community, Kitsumkalum First Nation, Maritime Aboriginal Peoples Council, Nunatsiavut Government, Pacheedaht First Nation, Tsleil-Waututh Nation, T’Sou-ke First Nation and Department of Fisheries and Oceans Canada. Read more about this project here.

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