Fish & Fish Habitat

See also items listed under Water Quality.

Information on Fish and Fish Habitat
in the Woodens River system

Asterisked documents (***) contain Water Quality data.

    • Focus on fish & fish habitat*** (PDF)
      The January 2011 issue of WRWEO’s newsletter, WRWEO WATCH, offers an overview of issues relating to fish and fish habitat in the Woodens River system. In an essay entitled “Where have all the mayflies gone”? Bob Chambers examines possible explanations for the precipitous decline of the spring mayfly in 1989/90 and the near simultaneous decline of the brook trout populations.
    • N.S. 2018 Angler’s Handbook
      The Woodens River system is a Catch & Release Special Trout Management Area:
      The following lakes in Halifax County will be catch and release only:
      Birch Hill Lake, Blueberry Lake, East Duck Lake, Five Island Lake Five Island Lake Run, Frederick Lake, Holland Marsh Lake, Hubley Big Lake, Jacket Lake, Lizard Lake and Sheldrake Lake and Woodens River (downstream from the outflow of Hubley Big Lake, including all lakes and tributaries). Single hook lure or artificial fly, natural bait is prohibited.
    • Nova Scotia Fly-fishing, Tying and Tall Tales
      Two pages on Pat Donoghue’s website describe some of the history of trout in the Woodens River system and the challenges they face: Fishing on the Woodens River,  Requiem for the Mill Pond. There’s lots else on this website related to fly-fishing, as well as some good fishing stories.
Lower Woodens in July
A section of the lower Woodens River in July
    • An integrative approach to prioritizing aquatic habitat restoration sites in the Wooden’s River watershed, Nova Scotia***

      2007 SMU Honours Geography thesis by Oliver C. Woods. This thesis deals with brook trout habitat in the Woodens River watershed. Posted with permission of the author.

    • Woodens River Watershed Resource Analysis (PDF)
      1993 report for the Three Brooks Homeowners Association by Elizabeth Tough (Nova Scotia College of Art and Design, Environmental Planning Studio 1).
      A resource analysis used the overlay technique, which involves overlaying the various resources, in map form, to define sensitive areas and opportunities and constraints for maintenance of brook trout
      habitat quality in the watershed. The resources considered were Vegetation and Land Use, Soils, Slope Aspect, Surficial Hydrology. Surficial geology, Structural Geology, Slope, Elevation.
      An original version with coloured Maps is available at the DAL Sexton Library (TC 426.5 W6 T6 1993). This PDF was scanned from B&W copy.
    • Woodens River Compensation/ Restoration Project Site Identification Report ***
      (WRWEO hardcopy files) Document prepared by Thaumas Environmental Consultants Ltd, 1 Sep. 2004. It reports on potential for restoration of trout habitat in Woodens River Watershed. Includes photographs, water quality data, discussion of Sheldrake Lake.
    • Report on Perch in Long Lake (Woodens River) (PDF)
      2010 report by Cathy Munro & John MacMillan of Nova Scotia Fisheries and Aquaculture.
    • Brook trout population parameters from angling catch from Big Five Bridge and Moores Lake, 2004. Summary of Initial Results***
      Report by Tara Crandlemere (Nova Scotia Fisheries and Aquaculture)

Provincial Documents

These documents address fish and fish habitat issues for Nova Scotia at large, but do not address the Woodens specifically.

Selected Papers from the Scientific Literature

    • Bartholomew, A & Bohnsack, J.A. 2005. A review of catch-and-release angling mortality with implications
      for no-take reserves
      . Reviews in Fish Biology and Fisheries (2005) 15: 129 -154. Available at
    • Catling, PM et al. 1986. Aquatic plants of acid lakes in Kejimkujik National Park, Nova Scotia; floristic composition and relation to water chemistry. Canadian Journal of Botany 64(4): p 724-729. Abstract
    • Dale, JM et al. 1985.
      Acidity and associated water chemistry of amphibian habitats in Nova Scotia.
      Canadian Journal of Zoology63(1): 97-105. Abstract
    • DuBois, R.B. & Dubielzig, R.R. 2004. Effect of Hook Type on Mortality, Trauma, and Capture
      Efficiency of Wild Stream Trout Caught by Angling with Spinners
      . North American Journal of Fisheries Management, 24:2, 609-616. Abstract
    • Halfyard, E.A., J.L. MacMillan and R.J. Madden. 2008. Fecundity and Sexual Maturity
      in Select Nova Scotia Trout Populations.
      Unpublished report. Inland Fisheries Division,
      Nova Scotia Department of Fisheries and Aquaculture. Pictou, Nova Scotia.
    • Hurley, G.V., Foyle, T.P. & White, W.J. 1989. Differences in acid tolerance during the early life stages of three strains of brook trout, Salvelinus fontinalis.
      Water, Air & Soil Pollution 46 (1-4): 387-398. Abstract
    • Kerekes, J. et al. 1994. Fish-eating bird abundance in oligotrophic lakes in Kejimkujik National Park, Nova Scotia, Canada. Hydrobiologia 279-280(1):57-61. Abstract
    • Jones, M.W. et al., 2001. Low genetic variability in lake populations of brook trout (Salvelinus fontinalis): A consequence of exploitation? Conservation Genetics 2: 245-256. Abstract
    • Roy, A.H. et al. 2003. Habitat-specific responses of stream insects to land cover disturbance: biologicalconsequences and monitoring Implications.Journal of the North American Benthological Society 22: 292-307. PDF
    • Smokorowski, K.E. & and Pratt, T.C. 2007. Effect of a change in physical structure and cover on fish and fish habitat in freshwater ecosystems – a review and meta-analysis
      Environmental reviews 15: 15-41. Abstract
    • Stewart, C.C. and Freedman, B. 1989. Comparison of the macrophyte communities of a clearwater and a brownwater oligotrophic lake in Kejimkujik National Park, Nova Scotia. Water, Air, & Soil Pollution 46(1-4): 335-341 Abstract
    • Standardized measurements of mercury in fish

      • Saint Mary’s University: Release of Fish Mercury Datalayer for Canada (FIMDAC): Information for potential researchers.
      • M Little, DC Depew NM Burgess & LM Campbell. 2014. Metadata: Fish Mercury Datalayer for Canada (FIDMAC).
      • Depew, D.C., Burgess, N.M., Anderson, M.R., Baker, R., Bhavsar, S.P., Bodaly, R.A., Eckley, C.S., Evans, M.S., Gantner, N., Graydon, J.A., Jacobs, K., LeBlanc, J.E., St. Louis, V.L., and Campbell, L.M. 2013a. An overview of mercury concentrations in freshwater fish species: A national fish mercury dataset for Canada. Canadian Journal of Fisheries and Aquatic Sciences. 70: 436-451.
      • Depew, D.C., Burgess, N.M., and Campbell, L.M. 2013b. Modeling mercury concentrations in prey fish: Derivation of a national-scale common indicator of dietary mercury exposure for piscivorous fish and wildlife. Environmental Pollution 176: 234-243.
      • David Depew, Neil M Burgess & Linda M Campbell. Spatial patterns of methylmercury risks to common loons and piscivorous fish in Canada. Environmental Science & Technology. Environ. Sci. Technol., 2013, 47 (22), pp 13093–13103 DOI: 10.1021/es403534q