Management Plans

Management Plan for the Grass Pickerel (Esox americanus vermiculatus) in Canada

In 2005, the Grass Pickerel was designated a species of Special Concern in Canada by the Committee on the Status of Endangered Wildlife in Canada (COSEWIC) and was listed on Schedule 1 of the Species at Risk Act (SARA) in 2006. The COSEWIC designation was based on the species’ restricted distribution and declining population estimates in three of 10 known locations.

The Grass Pickerel is a sub-species of the Redfin Pickerel from the pike family Esocidae. It has the usual pike-like body (i.e., long, relatively shallow and cylindrical to sub-cylindrical body, large mouth with many teeth, forked tail and posterior dorsal and anal fins) and is generally less than 300 mm in total length with a maximum recorded total length of 381 mm.  The global range of the Grass Pickerel is restricted to North America and in Canada, its range is restricted to a small number of populations in Ontario and Quebec. However, in Quebec, the species’ presence has not been confirmed for 20 years. This species is most commonly found in warm, slow-moving, heavily vegetated wetland-associated streams, ponds and shallow bays of larger lakes. They are typically ambush predators that feed predominately on fishes and, to a lesser extent, aquatic insects and crustaceans.

Consultation period: 2011-12-13 to 2012-02-11


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Contact Person(s)

SARA Directorate
Department of Fisheries and Oceans
200 Kent St.
Ottawa, ON
K1A 0E6
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