Science Capability

Overview: The FECPL is equipped with the tools necessary to study the ecology, behaviour, and physiology of wild fish in freshwater and marine waters. We have the ability to conduct such studies locally, across Canada, or abroad (we have worked in 15+ countries). We have particular expertise related to fish telemetry, fish passage, fish-hydropower interactions, and recreational fisheries. See for examples of projects conducted in partnership with government, industry, and NGO collaborators.

FECPL Capacity:

  • Telemetry: We have a variety of telemetry infrastructure for tracking wild fish and other aquatic animals. For example, we have ten Lotek Wireless radio telemetry receivers and associated infrastructure (e.g., solar panels, antennas) for setting up fixed monitoring stations. We also have five Oregon RFID passive integrated transponder receivers, each of which can be equipped with up to four antennas. Our acoustic telemetry equipment includes some sixty+ Vemco VR2W hydrophones, seven Lotek Wireless MAP hydrophones, and 35 Lotek Wireless JSATS hydrophones.
  • Biologgers: Our lab maintains an inventory of various re-usable biologging devices including Star-Oddi heart rate loggers and GCDC accelerometers.
  • Field physiology: We have a suite of field physiology tools including point-of-care devices (for blood chemistry), respirometers, and dewars (for sample storage and transport), as well as access to laboratory facilities for a suite of energetic and stress indicators.
  • Boats: We maintain a fleet of six boats including a 23 foot custom-made Connor Industries research vessel, a 19 foot Lowe Roughneck utility boat, an 18 foot Ranger bass boat, a 17 foot electrofishing boat, a 14 foot utility boat, and a 12 foot inflatable boat.


  • Facility managers: Jessica Taylor and Lisa Donaldson
  • Director: Professor Steven Cooke
  • Team: 7 post docs and 25+ graduate students


Focus: Fisheries, Environmental Monitoring, Aquatic Conservation, Environmental Protection, Sustainable/Renewable Energy, Conservation Science.

Project Examples: Tracking fish in and around hydropower infrastructure to identify entrainment risk; Quantifying bycatch and release mortality rates and development of best handling practices for recreational and commercial fisheries; Assessing the effectiveness of fish passage facilities; Evaluating the success of ecological restoration activities. 

Engagement types and co-funding

  • R&D partnerships with leveraging potential
  • contract research and consulting
  • for-fee equipment use
  • Industrial-partnered student and post-doctoral internships

Point of Contact: Steven Cooke, FECPL Director; 613-867-6711;

Contact Information

Steven Cooke, FECPL Director; 613-867-6711;

Facility Details