Technical Training

Toronto and Region Conservation Authority (TRCA) provides Ontario Stream Assessment Protocol (OSAP) courses and other technical training opportunities to help transfer knowledge to partners and peers, and to help improve the accuracy and standardization of ecological data collected in regional watersheds.

Ontario Fish Identification Workshop
2021 Course Cancelled

monitoring professional takes part in fish identification technical training workshop

The Fish ID workshop involves a series of lectures and hands-on experiences (including working through preserved specimens with dichotomous keys such as those in Freshwater Fishes of Canada) designed to highlight the key identification features of Ontario’s fish families and selected species.

Two levels of training are integrated into the workshop:

  • Level 1 focuses on the identification of fish families, sport fishes and other common species (for example, differentiating Smallmouth Bass from Largemouth Bass or Brook Trout from Brown Trout), and is designed for individuals with some prior experience identifying fishes.
  • Level 2 focuses on juvenile sportfish and adult “common” minnows and darters, among others (for example, differentiating Emerald Shiner from Rosyface Shiner or Greenside Darter from Rainbow Darter), and is structured for participants with a bit more experience in fish identification.

At the end of the workshop, students will be given the option of taking a test to assess their proficiency at Level 1, Level 2 or Level 3 (Advanced). Please note: Training for Level 3 is not provided at this workshop.

The test is not mandatory. However, if students pass the test, their certification level will be entered into the OSAP database.

This course is recommended for anyone conducting aquatic sampling in Ontario where fish identifications are required.

The Ontario Fish Identification workshop for 2021 has been cancelled. If you would like to be added to the waiting list for 2022, please fill out the form below:

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Benthos Identification Workshop
2022 Course Cancelled

monitoring professionals take part in benthos identification technical training

The Ontario Benthos Biomonitoring Network (OBBN) is a multi-sector biomonitoring collaboration, in which bottom-dwelling aquatic invertebrates are used to monitor the ecological condition of lakes, streams, and wetlands.

OBBN is led by Ontario’s Ministry of the Environment, Conservation and Parks (MECP), but certified participants represent all sectors. OBBN features standard sampling protocols, technical training, and a database (which allows data to be shared among members, and with other Ontarians).

Toronto and Region Conservation Authority (TRCA), in partnership with the MECP and the Ministry of Northern Development, Mines, Natural Resources and Forestry, offers a benthic macroinvertebrate identification workshop in association with the Ontario Stream Assessment Protocol (OSAP) training course.

The Ontario Benthos Identification workshop for 2022 has been cancelled. If you would like to be added to the waiting list for 2023, please fill out the form below:

Name*
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Stream Monitoring/Research Study Design Workshop
2021 Course Cancelled

TRCA staff conduct stream monitoring research in the field

This course is recommended for biologists, ecologists, technicians, resource managers, and data managers who are involved in stream surveys, as well as those involved in making management decisions regarding streams and headwater systems.

The workshop will provide participants with an understanding of:

  • The pros and cons of using rapid-standard and detailed methods in study design
  • Limitations to common modules and how these influence study design
  • Ways to routinely summarize data and interpret results
  • Experience in accessing and extracting both raw and summarized data from within the Flowing Waters Information System and the Ontario Benthic Biomonitoring Network Database
  • The study design process applied to various projects to answer pertinent questions about trends, states, and differences between sites
  • How temporal and spatial scale and resource limitations influence study designs
  • Information about how well indicators perform at differentiating states and what analysis is available to help with determining sample size for various studies (e.g., coefficients of variation)
  • An introduction to an original approach to data/information management that offers an opportunity for discovering and utilizing large datasets that traditionally have not been readily accessible. For example, OSAP, OBBN, groundwater, weather, flow, and benthic data
  • How to determine what datasets are available, how to extract them, and how to synchronize external datasets that are both OSAP and non-OSAP compatible

Completion of an OSAP and OBBN field course is desirable, but not essential.

The Stream Monitoring/Research Study Design course for 2021 has been cancelled. If you would like to be added to the waiting list for 2022, please fill out the form below:

  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.

Assessing Headwater Drainage Features Workshop
2022 Course Cancelled

Students learn how to assess headwater features

The assessment of headwater drainage features (HDFs) is quickly becoming an integral component of natural heritage evaluation reports and ecological impact studies.

The Evaluation, Classification and Management of Headwater Drainage Features Guidelines (TRCA and CVC, 2013) outline the key pieces of information needed in order to properly assess a HDF.

This course explains the guidelines and shows how modules 10 (Constrained Headwater Sampling) and 11 (Unconstrained Headwater Sampling) of the Ontario Stream Assessment Protocol (OSAP) can be applied to collect the information needed to evaluate and classify HDFs.

These modules are provincially recognized as a standard by the Ontario Ministry of Northern Development, Mines, Natural Resources and Forestry. They provide a standardized approach for collecting data regarding the flow, form, riparian conditions, and sediment transport and deposition characteristics of HDFs.

Participants in this technical training course will learn about and have a chance to apply the techniques used in the two OSAP modules. The course also provides guidance on how to use these modules in relation to the HDF guidelines.

The 2022 Assessing Headwater Drainage Features Workshop has been cancelled. If you would like to be added to the waiting list for 2023, please fill out the form below:

Name*
This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.

Class 2 Backpack Electrofishing Certification
2022 Course Cancelled

students learn how to backpack electrofish

The main emphasis of this technical training course is the safe use of backpack electroshocking units.

The topics covered will include protective equipment, safe procedures and backups or failsafes. The course will also include the fundamentals of electrical theory.

There is also a practical component to the course for which participants will be required to demonstrate safe electrofishing practices in the field.

Instruction will be provided by a Class 1 Ontario Ministry of Northern Development, Mines, Natural Resources and Forestry certified instructor and meets ministry policy standards.

This course is intended for field crews and resource managers involved in stream surveys and management. Registration preference is given to professionals in the field who will be electrofishing in the calendar year the course is offered.

The 2022 Class 2 Backpack Electrofishing Certification course has been cancelled. If you would like to be added to the waiting list for 2023, please fill out the form below:

  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.