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Fish found in Kingston area waters

Here's an image of a poster you can order:

See also Fishing

General overview

Some 85 fish species have been recorded in Lake Ontario.

A number of once common species are now no longer found in the lake, including the deepwater sculpin (once so numerous they were considered a nuisance), blue walleye, bridle shiner, kiyi and blackfin cisco.

Though still present, lake trout and lake whitefish are no longer very common. At present the most abundant native species include yellow and brown bullhead, American eel, northern pike, yellow perch, walleye, sauger, smallmouth and largemouth bass.

Various species of amphibians and reptiles are common in wetland areas. Although ring-billed gulls dominate the water bird fauna of this region by a wide margin, there are also small colonies of herring gulls, double-crested cormorants, Caspian and and common terns, great blue herons and black-crowned night herons. Significant numbers of waterfowl -- Canada geese, black ducks, mallards, canvasbacks, redheads and scaups -- stage in the region both in spring and fall. Numerous birds winter where open water permits, mainly gulls and various ducks.

Source: http://www.pc.gc.ca/progs/amnc-nmca/plan/gla6_E.asp

Stop the Invasion! -- Harmful Exotic Species: Ontario's waters are threatened by exotic species that can be spread unknowingly by anglers and boaters.

See the Trout and Salmon Identification Guide.

Fresh Water Fish Species

From The Lake Ontario Management Unit

Lake Ontario Pelagic Fish 1: Prey Fish
Lake Ontario Pelagic Fish 2: Salmon and Trout
Lake Ontario Offshore Benthic Fish
Lake Ontario Nearshore Fish
St. Lawrence River Fish
Lake Ontario Commercial Fishery
Bay of Quinte Recreational Fishery
Two Decades of Commercial Fishery Management on Lake Ontario, 1981-2001
Atlantic Salmon Restoration in Lake Ontario


A good fish website for kids (Guelph University)

More scholarly sources of regional fish information

Lake Ontario Fish Communities and Fisheries: 2001 ANNUAL REPORT OF THE LAKE ONTARIO MANAGEMENT UNIT



Recent related news

April 7 2011

Fenced dock along Kingston Waterfront.

ACCESS DENIED in the Wednesday Whig about the fenced-off dock behind KPH.

Here's a growing list of Kingston waterfront's currently fenced-off locations linking to photos.

Missing any?


Posted April 7 2011
Category: Accessibility

December 21 2010

2011 FISHING REGULATIONS are online.

Of local interest are Zone 18 covering the inland lakes of Eastern Ontario, and Zone 20 covering all of Lake Ontario and the St-Lawrence River including the Great Cataraqui River south of Kingston Mills.

There's a great fish identification chart as well.

Posted December 21 2010
Category: Fishing

October 8 2010

COAST GUARD STATION RELOCATION is still a threat, according to the Fall 2010 Portsmouth Community Newsletter

There's a whiff of arrogance from the feds here. Anne Milina Park, on the water, is definitely threatened.

PDCA has been disappointed that the Coast Guard (Department of Fisheries and Oceans-DFO) has shown no interest in discussing the matter with municipal representatives.

As citizens, we might want to consider working to kaibosh the whole relocation plan.

Posted October 8 2010
Category: Parks

July 22 2010

PRO-AM BASS DERBY IN TOWN through Saturday, from CKWS-TV News.

It's the Kingston Canadian Open of Fishing, also on Facebook.

Posted July 22 2010
Category: Fishing

June 8 2010

NEARLY A THOUSAND LIGHTHOUSES declared surplus by the Department of Fisheries and Oceans.

Kingston-area lights at Nine-mile Point on Simcoe Island, Quebec Head on Wolfe Island, False Duck Island, Main Duck Island, Nicholson's Point, and Pigeon Island are all on the list..

The surplus lighthouses are those that Canadian Coast Guard officials determined "could be replaced with simpler structures whose operation and maintenance would be more cost-effective..."

Posted June 8 2010
Category: Working waterfront

October 19 2009

Charity Shoal

FISHING FOR ANSWERS OFF KINGSTON'S SHORES in today's Whig, about an ongoing geophysical survey of Charity Shoal, thought to be a meteor impact crater.

One-mile diameter Charity Shoal is 11-miles due South of Portsmouth Olympic Harbour. Most of the crater is in Canadian waters.

Posted October 19 2009
Category: Lake Ontario

January 19 2009

Kingston Official Plan 2008 Documents

THE LATEST OFFICIAL PLAN for the City of Kingston contains much related to waterfront in its 35 PDF documents and hundreds of pages.

We're fast approaching the plan's "consultation" period, for what that's worth.

Looking through all the documents for its waterfront-related aspects, there are numerous general mentions of the recreational uses of our waterfront. Considering the vast majority of kingstonians have no meaningful relationship with the waterfront beyond the occasional glimpse, it all rings hollow.

The plan goes nowhere beyond cliches and platitudes as far as recreational waterfront is concerned.

For example, in the hundreds of pages of the plan, the words Swim, Sail, Row or Rowing, SCUBA, or Diving never appear. The word Wreck appears several times, always in reference to wrecking yards.

The word Beach appears just once in reference to Richardson Beach Bathouse but not in the context of swimming, its renovation, or any recreational aspect you might hope-for.

Don't look to the plan for mention of Ramps unless those ramps are for sidewalk accessibility.

The word Fishing appears once, in the context of some policy that would control fish farming -- probably text copied wholesale from some other municipality's plan.

The word Boating is used once, in a non-specific way, in one document titled "Downtown and Harbour Area Special Policy Area".

In that PDF you'll find doozies like this:

Public Access to the Water
10A.4.14. Access to the waterfront will be enhanced wherever possible, particularly at the ends of public rights of way. Publicly accessible docks also form character-defining elements of the Harbour Area and provide informal open space that will be preserved.


Oh, there are good things in the plan. Lots of words about linking waterfront pathways, and acquiring waterfront properties. But everybody knows there will never be much money for that.

You can have a multi-faceted plan that makes everybody, especially its authors and the politicians, feel-good. But in the end, when it comes to implementation, there is only one group in Kingston that ALWAYS hoovers most of the money: Downtown Kingston. This plan ensures that this will continue.

The plan is crystal clear on this: the systematic and grotesque annual subsidies of Downtown Kingston, the land owners there, and those who run the related tourist-trappings, will continue unabated.

Looking for quality of life initiatives for the residents of the rest of amalgamated Kingston, especially addressing our waterfront-related recreational infrastructure deficit? Not in the plan.

Posted January 19 2009
Category: City Council

October 2 2008

Black Angus haul-out

THE BLACK ANGUS was hauled-out for the winter on Tuesday at Kingston Marina. Click the photo to see more.

The Black Angus is the 100-year-old 28-foot wood double-ended clinker fishing boat restored by volunteers at the Marine Museum of the Great Lakes and re-launched this August after 7,000 hours of restauration.

Thanks to John Duerkop for the photos.

Posted October 2 2008
Category: History

September 24 2008

THE BIG JIM SHOWDOWN, this weekend at POH, rises from the ashes of the WFN Canadian Open debacle.

This pro/am fishing event will run in support of well-known fisherman, Jim McLaughlin, and his battle with cancer, while also honouring our Canadian Forces.

It starts Friday at the Junior Officer's Mess at CFB Kingston, Saturday and Sunday at POH.

Posted September 24 2008
Category: Fishing

September 14 2008

THE FINAL OF THE WFN 2008 BASS TOUR, THE CANADIAN OPEN, which was supposedly coming to Kingston September 19-21, isn't going to happen.

Apparently word of the cancellation has been known in fishing circles since late May.

By the looks of this, the folks at WFN are adept at self-congratulating press-releases announcing the event (November 2007), then later announcing sponsors (Lakeport Beer in March 2008).

But when things derail, mum's the word.

The event is still listed on the KEDCO website.

Related: K7's news item from last November.

Posted September 14 2008
Category: Fishing

September 2 2008

Council Motion to grab waterfront

AT COUNCIL TONIGHT is a motion to...

"....prevent any development within 120 m of the high water mark of the Rideau waterway from the Lasalle Causeway to the northern boundary of the city without the permission of Council."

Most people don't realize the northern extent of the City of Kingston.

FYI, this motion includes:

  • The Cataraqui River (both shores)
  • Colonel By Lake (both shores)
  • The South shore of River Styx
  • The South Shore of Cranberry Lake
  • The South Shore of Little Cranberry Lake
  • The South Shore of part of Whitefish Lake
  • And both shores, or just the South shore, of all the waterways interconnecting the above.

This is a job for a proper Conservation Authority, one that doesn't give a rats-ass if your name is Brit Smith or Byron Springer.

Details in The Whig, but there is no sense therein of the full extent of this.

Posted September 2 2008
Category: City Council

August 23 2008

Rideau Lakes Region

RIDEAU LAKES MISS THE BOAT, according to the Saturday Ottawa Citizen.

Area has everything except a visible attempt to promote itself

This area between Smiths Falls and Kingston has lakes of all sizes, the Rideau Canal, the Cataraqui Trail, fine fishing, decent golf courses, excellent scenery and some quaint towns. What it doesn't have is any visible effort to promote or package all that attractive stuff.

That's so true. The Township of Rideau Lakes is an independent entity and, if the author is correct, then tourism-wise Kingston has an evidently weak northern neighbor with tons of potential.

Just like Quebec City benefits from Mt. Ste-Anne, and Montreal benefits from the Eastern Townships, Kingston stands to gain from having stronger tourism players in the region.

Not that Kingston currently contributes much regionally. Currently, Kingston's tourism "region", its sole focus, covers barely a square-mile.

If Kingston can shake its myopia and break free from the cult of Downtown Kingston, then maybe it could eventually help strengthen, and center, a vast and dynamic region.

Posted August 23 2008
Category: The region

August 15 2008

THE BLACK ANGUS SAILS AGAIN in this weekend's edition of Kingston This Week.

It's about the successful 7,000-hour restoration of a 100-year-old 28-foot wood double-ended clinker fishing boat by volunteers at the Marine Museum of the Great Lakes.

Posted August 15 2008
Category: History

May 27 2008

Lake Ontario Waterkeeper

FISHING AT THE BARRICADES PART 1 and PART 2 are two interesting recent podcasts from Lake Ontario Waterkeeper on the state of fishing in Lake Ontario.

Lake Ontario covers 7,540 square miles. There is very little commercial fishery activity on the Canadian side, and no commercial fishery at all based on the the American side. Not so long ago, there was lots.

Subscribe to the Living At the Barricades Podcast via iTunes.

Posted May 27 2008
Category: The environment

May 9 2008

INSIDE LOOK AT THE LAFARGE TIRE-BURNING CASE is a very interesting podcast from Lake Ontario Waterkeeper. A good summary of where we stand, and don't stand.

Download the 12.5 Mb MP3 file which runs 27:19 minutes. You can also subscribe to Lake Ontario Waterkeeper podcasts with iTunes.

Posted May 9 2008
Category: The environment

May 7 2008

THE SPINY WATER FLEA is the subject of an interesting article in The Whig yesterday.

Anglers on local lakes are being asked to let their lines, nets and other gear dry completely between fishing expeditions to prevent the spread of a parasite that a Queen's University researcher (Dr. Shelley Arnott) fears is taking over Ontario's lakes.

The same proscription presumably applies to boats and trailers.

Posted May 7 2008
Category: The environment

April 17 2008

Well worth reading each spring: SHOCKING NEWS ABOUT COLD WATER.

  • Nine elite marines, water survival instructors, capsized in 36 degree water wearing sweatsuits and no PFDs. None of them survived the attempted 100 yard swim to shore.
  • Sixteen (16) Danish fishermen jumped into the icy waters of the North Sea when their trawler sank in a storm. They were in the water for a 2 - 3 hours before being rescued. They walked across the deck of the rescue vessel and went down into the galley to warm up. Each and every one collapsed and died in the galley.
  • An average adult person has a 50/50 chance of surviving a 50 yard swim in 50F water.
  • A 50 year-old person in 50F water has a 50/50 chance of surviving for 50 minutes.

The water temperature in Kingston Harbour is currently about 40F.

Read the whole thing. Stay safe.

Posted April 17 2008
Category: Boating

March 3 2008

Lake Ontario Waterkeeper

WE ALL NEED CERTAINTY...AND A SWIMABLE, DRINKABLE, FISHABLE KINGSTON is a wrap of recent Lake Ontario Waterkeeper activity in the area, including the Lafarge tire-burning issue.

Bet you didn't know that Lake Ontario Waterkeeper started in Kingston.

Posted March 3 2008
Category: The environment

February 20 2008

LAKE ONTARIO WATERKEEPER IN KINGSTON on Friday and Saturday. Live at the barricades
  • This Friday, February, 22, 2008, from 2:00-3:00pm, Waterkeeper brings its weekly radio show - Living at the Barricades - to The Grad Club in Kingston, ON. Very special guests and musicians will join hosts Mark Mattson and Krystyn Tully for an exciting and inspiring live broadcast entitled: "Beyond the Barricades: The promise of a swimable, drinkable, fishable Kingston."

    Free Admittance. Please join us!
    162 Barrie St. in Kingston, 2:00-3:00pm
    Contact: Avi Grand (Producer)

  • Saturday February 23, Waterkeeper will have a booth at the Kingston Regional Sports and Entertainment Centre where The Tragically Hip will play the venue's first live concert. Enter a draw for a signed Kingston Frontenacs jersey, pick up a copy of At the Barricades: Volume 1, chat with Waterkeeper staff, and enjoy the show!
Posted February 20 2008
Category: The environment

November 15 2007

THE FINAL OF THE WFN 2008 BASS TOUR, THE CANADIAN OPEN, IS COMING TO KINGSTON, September 19-21 2008. There is $1,000,000 in prize money up for grabs.

Here's a press release with the fishing tournament's prize structure.

The lead-up events are in Georgina (Jul 4-6), Sarnia (Jul 25-27), Port Colborne (Aug 22-24), and Gravenhurst in the Muskokas (Sep 5-7), before the final in Kingston September 19-21.

Unlike the Poker Run, which occurs on an August weekend that would be sold-out in any event, this event is in mid-fall, when our waterfront facilities and accommodations in town have lots of excess capacity. Smart!

WFN.TV is a slick operation, and entering the event is not cheap. A professional angler, competing only in Kingston, must pay a $3,500 entry fee, while amateur anglers are in for $850 apiece.

If you're in, register here.

Posted November 15 2007
Category: Fishing

August 13 2007

THE LACK OF SHORELINE FISHING SPOTS is the subject of an interesting front-page story in today's Whig. It highlights a big problem with the waterfront in the City of Kingston: accessibility.

We've got:

Posted August 13 2007
Category: Fishing

July 7 2007

UP TO THE GILLS -- POLLUTION IN GREAT LAKES FISH is a 15-page report by Environmental Defence released on July 5th, 2007.

In short:

  • Toxic chemicals in Great Lakes fish are alarmingly high and becoming more serious over time.
  • Lake Ontario is the worst of all the Great Lakes.
  • Toxins that once only surfaced in big fish are making their way down the food chain, to smaller fish.

Here's Recommendation 1 (of 8 in total) which is interesting:

RECOMMENDATION 1: In order to provide a more realistic representation of the state of fish contamination in the Great Lakes and improve fish advisories as an indicator of Great Lakes health, provincial, state and national partners in the U.S. and Canada must develop and maintain a publicly accessible record of information on the current status, evolution and historical levels of chemical contamination of fish in the Great Lakes, including information on the toxicity levels in and around the Great Lakes basin.

In other words: That's not happening now.

Posted July 7 2007
Category: The environment

April 15 2007

Well worth reading each spring: SHOCKING NEWS ABOUT COLD WATER.

- nine elite marines, water survival instructors, capsized in 36 degree water wearing sweatsuits and no PFDs. None of them survived the attempted 100 yard swim to shore.

- sixteen (16) Danish fishermen jumped into the icy waters of the North Sea when their trawler sank in a storm. They were in the water for a 2 - 3 hours before being rescued. They walked across the deck of the rescue vessel and went down into the galley to warm up. Each and every one collapsed and died in the galley.

- an average adult person has a 50/50 chance of surviving a 50 yard swim in 50F water.

- a 50 year old person in 50F water has a 50/50 chance of surviving for 50 minutes.

Read the whole thing.

The water temperature in Kingston Harbour is currently about 37F.

Posted April 15 2007
Category: Safety

December 29 2006

WATERKEEPER ROUNDUP: Canada slow to respond to fish virus from The Whig, and Issue burns in Bath, also from The Whig, about last week's stunning approval by the Ministry of the Environment that allows Lafarge to import and burn up to 100 tonnes of municipal waste per day, including tires, meat, bone meal and pelletized garbage for two years whilst, at the same time, banning it everywhere else.

Posted December 29 2006
Category: The environment

December 21 2006


The kicker: The Ministry of the Environment proposed a ban on tire incineration at the same time. This ban would prevent other facilities from applying for permits to burn tires and is based on the Ministry’s, "lack of experience monitoring the environmental performance of facilities that incinerate tires."

Posted December 21 2006
Category: The environment

November 8 2006

THE HERITAGE NEWSPAPER, via Lake Ontario Waterkeeper, reports Pollution-to-housing waterfront deal hits a snag about the Davis Tannery site development.

Posted November 8 2006
Category: The environment

October 17 2006

LAKE ONTARIO SAFETY ZONES, as proposed by the United States Coast Guard for occasional shooting practice, will have negligible impact on Kingston's boating, diving, fishing, and tourism trade. Zilch.

American boaters, on the other hand, are rightfully pissed at the idea since it affects them far more than it will ever affect Kingston.

If this goes through, it's just one more reason why the northern shore of Lake Ontario is a nicer place for boating, and for quality of life. On this so-called "issue" Kingston's current mayor, Harvey Rosen, would be well advised to zip it.

Click the chart below for a larger view or, better yet, see the US Homeland Security page. The box outlined with "blue" dots is the five-mile distance from the U.S. shores and/or U.S.-Canada maritime border. The boxes outlined with "yellow" dots, here shaded pinkish, are the proposed safety zones on Lake Ontario .


Posted October 17 2006
Category: The environment

October 12 2006

THE LAKE ONTARIO WATERKEEPER/ WOLFE ISLAND WILDLIFE ASSOCIATION WETLAND CORRIDOR PROPOSAL has been released. This is all about cleaning up and renewing the Wolfe Island Canal.

See the very interesting 40-page, 19 Mb PDF document , which includes some fascinating appendices including an inventory of fish, plant, and wildlife on Wolfe Island.

Posted October 12 2006
Category: The region

September 14 2006

THE WHIG REPORTS on the three options presented by the International Joint Commission for regulating Lake Ontario water levels. See the commission's 162 page report, including some fascinating annexes.

Lake Ontario Waterkeeper endorses Plan B+:

Plan B+ represents a favorable compromise between pre-dam ideal environmental conditions and human uses of the Lake and River waterways. LOW notes that this is the only candidate plan that is directed towards the goals of the study, that is improving the Lake and River ecosystem. By permitting a greater range of fluctuations, meadow marsh habitat in Lake Ontario will be significantly improved. Plan B+ does more than any other plan to address species at risk, with notable improvements to populations of least bittern, black tern, yellow rail, and king rail.
Posted September 14 2006

August 28 2006

CORMORANTS TAKE A BITE OUT OF FISH STOCKS, which confirms what local fishermen have been observing for a long while.

Posted August 28 2006

August 27 2006

FUNDRAISING CONCERT: GORD DOWNIE will be performing a "Heart of a Lake" tour in three cities between September 18 to 21, 2006. All proceeds from the tour will be used to help communities win back their rights to safely swim, drink, and fish in Lake Ontario.

He'll be performing in Kingston on Thursday, September 21st, 8pm at Sydenham Street United Church, 82 Sydenham Street, Kingston. Tickets $18, fees extra. Available online at www.maplemusic.com and www.grandtheatre-kingston.com, at the Grand Theatre Box office, the John Deutsch University Centre and The Grad Club, and by phone at 613.530.2050

Posted August 27 2006

August 13 2006

CORMORANTS: The Syracuse Post Standard today ran a story titled Give cormorants credit for goby diet. Cormorants have become a huge problem on some islands near Kingston. Gobies (see also here) are an invasive species currently threatening many native fish populations.

Posted August 13 2006

August 8 2006

Here's another recent article about the deadly virus killing fish in Lake Ontario.

Posted August 8 2006

August 2 2006

Here's a Utilities Kingston Tender posted August first, closing August 16th, for work that must be done before December 15th 2006. Therein:

  • Landscaping of the on-shore areas of the east and west shores of the Great Cataraqui River - the naturalization of 5,800m2 on the west shore, the restoration of the east shore and landscaping in the vicinity of the River Street Sewage Pumping Station, including Douglas L. Fluhrer Park.

  • In-water fish compensation works in the Great Cataraqui River - construction of an artificial reef on the east shore of the Great Cataraqui River and the installation of ten (10) root wads on shoreline areas.
  • All this seems ridiculously short-notice and cross-diciplinary. The City of Kingston stumbles on without sense or vision for the Cataraqui River.
    Posted August 2 2006

    July 27 2006

    Two recent posts from Lake Ontario Waterkeeper:

  • The virus affecting Lake Ontario fish is spreading from one species to another.
  • Winners and losers in Lake Ontario water-level control proposals.
  • Posted July 27 2006

    July 17 2006

    CKWS-TV has filed a transcript of a report on a recent fish die-off in Lake Ontario and the St Lawrence river. It's apparentlly caused by the VHS virus. Here's the report byThe New York State Department of Environmental Conservation on the matter. See also here and here.

    Posted July 17 2006

    June 6 2006

    Waterkeeper is right: Lafarge's application for a landfill in Bath and it's recent application for burning waste in its kilns should be examined in context together.

    Posted June 6 2006

    April 19 2006

    Cold water and its effects are involved in virtually all kayaking and recreational boating deaths. An article posted on the Yachting World website explains what makes cold water exposure so potentially risky, reviews some strategies to minimize that risk, and raise a few hairs with some stories of tragic, and mostly preventable, cold water deaths. For example:

    • Nine elite marines, water survival instructors, capsized in 36F water wearing sweatsuits and no PFDs. None of them survived the attempted 100 yard swim to shore.
    • Sixteen (16) Danish fishermen jumped into the icy waters of the North Sea when their trawler sank in a storm. They were in the water for a 2 - 3 hours before being rescued. They walked across the deck of the rescue vessel and went down into the galley to warm up. Each and every one collapsed and died in the galley.
    • An average adult person has a 50/50 chance of surviving a 50 yard swim in 50F. water.
    The current water temperature in these parts is 40F. The article is titled Shocking news about cold water. Read the whole thing.
    Posted April 19 2006

    March 19 2006

    Lake Ontario Waterkeeper has serious concerns about Lafarge’s plan to burn tires and other garbage in its cement kiln near Bath.

    The Bath cement plant is already one of the largest polluters in the region (see also here).

    Posted March 19 2006

    March 14 2006

    From the United States Army Corps of Engineers:

    All of the Great Lakes are 3 to 8 inches below the levels of a year ago. Lake Superior is below chart datum and is expected to be at the same level a month from now. Lake Michigan-Huron is below chart datum and should rise 4 inches within the next 30 days . Lake St. Clair and Lake Erie are expected to rise 4 inches over the next month and Lake Ontario is expected to rise two inches over the next month. Due to a warmer than average January and February some of the Great Lakes seem to have begun their seasonal rise earlier than normal, but levels over the next few months on all the Great Lakes are expected to remain lower than 2005.

    Posted March 14 2006

    January 27 2006

    The Ministry of Natural Resources is rethinking a controversial plan to close bass sanctuaries in the Rideau Lakes area after angry opposition from tourism and fishing operators.

    Posted January 27 2006
    This is an important topic for the Kingston , Ontario waterfront. Currently, this article is incomplete, and it would be cool to expand it. If you know anything about Fish, please consider editing the topic and sharing your knowledge.
    ( Topic last updated: 2009.06.02 09:11:52 AM )