Announcements & News

Special Trout Management Zone closing Monday, August 8th🎣

The Indian Bay – Bonavista North Watershed Special Trout Management Area (map below) will close to Trout angling as of one hour after sunset, on Monday, August 8th. It will re-open one hour before sunrise, on Friday, September 2nd (Labour Day Weekend).

The August 8th closure does not apply to Southwest Pond, Otter Pond, and Coaker’s Steady area out towards Greenspond. This area will close on Wednesday, September 7th, as per the Angler’s Guide.

For more information on Special Trout Management Zones, Trout regulations, and more, please consult the 2022-23 Angler’s Guide at

2022 Atlantic Salmon Recreational Fishery

Insular Newfoundland – June 1 to September 7, 2022

Labrador – June 15 to September 15, 2022

Details on the regulations pertaining to bag limits, river classification, closed areas, and special management areas are contained in the 2022 – 2023 Angler’s Guide which is available online at

With the salmon season approaching, we encourage you to check out our short video on best practices for catch and release angling:

Summer Trout Season Opening Sunday, May 15th

May 11th, 2022 – Trout Season will opening within the Special Trout Management Zone (map below for reference) one hour before sunrise on Sunday, May 15th. This does not include Southwest Pond, Otter Pond, and Coaker’s Steady, which will open one hour before sunrise on Wednesday, June 1st.

Please respect related regulations for the Zone and other fisheries. Please use caution if fishing from shore or on the water🎣

For more information on angling in Newfoundland & Labrador, please check out the 2022-23 Angler’s Guide:

Cause of Death of Turrs Determined

April 11th, 2022 – Over the weekend, the Province of Newfoundland and Labrador Animal Health Unit provided results to multiple testing samples sent to it over the past couple of weeks regarding the large Turr die-off that has occurred within the province. Results show it was not Avian Flu, but starvation, most likely from natural causes.

Sabina Wilhelm, Wildlife Biologist with the Canadian Wildlife Service (CWS), a division of Environment & Climate Change Canada (ECCC), states “at this point, we can only presume that sustained unfavourable weather (e.g., strong NE winds) played a role in pushing large numbers of Thick-billed Murres inshore, away from the offshore foraging areas, preventing them from successfully feeding and causing them to become weakened and unable to fly back to their foraging grounds. While these events on their own are not unprecedented (two similar situations back in 2007 and 2009), this one is a bit different due to its much larger geographic extent.”

Additional information will be released in the coming days through various media. IBEC would like to thank the entire CWS team (Sabina, Chris, Josh) for allowing us to assist them in this important research, and Dr. Bill Montevecchi for his guidance and input into our questions


IBEC continues to assist ECCC officials with Turr research🧐

April 7th, 2022 – This afternoon, we met up with biologists from the Canadian Wildlife Service, a division of Environment and Climate Change Canada, to assist them with collecting all of the dead turrs along half of Deadman’s Bay Beach. Approximately 60 Turrs, in various stages of decomposition, were collected. All Turrs will be used for research purposes, with some going to universities and other researchers across Canada. Additional samples will be sent to Winnipeg at the national lab for continued analysis to determine the cause of death.

We thank the public for their assistance in reporting additional locations of Turrs (in this case those in Deadman’s Bay), the team from St. John’s coming out to do on site research, and the chance to work with them on this file and others.


Indian Bay – Bonavista North Watershed Special Trout Management Zone – Angling Closing Friday, April 1st

March 31st, 2022 – The Winter Trout Angling Season will close tomorrow (Friday), April 1st. The Summer Trout Angling Season will open on Sunday, May 15th.

Please consult the Angler’s Guide for information related to Trout, Salmon, Smelt, and all related regulations.

Gander & Area Chamber of Commerce Environmental Award

March 30th, 2022 – IBEC won the Environmental Award sponsored by Newfoundland Power last evening at the Gander and Area Chamber of Commerce Business Awards Gala!

We would like to thank the Chamber, those that nominated us, all of our funders, volunteers, management, employees, business partners, and the Board, for their hard work over the last two years (didn’t have an award ceremony last year due to the pandemic). This award represents the commitment and effort the organization puts into the Indian Bay Watershed and surrounding project areas, and shows the importance of having a healthy ecosystem for everyone to enjoy.


Winter Trout Season Opens Tuesday, February 1st!

Winter Trout Season opens for the entire Indian Bay – Bonavista North Watershed Special Trout Management Area one hour before sunrise on Tuesday, February 1st.

This does not include Southwest Pond, Otter Pond, and Coaker’s Steady, where Winter Angling is prohibited (only smelt).

For more information on angling regulations please consult the Angler’s Guide at

Please use extreme caution when on the ice this Winter.

Cape Freels Leach’s Storm-Petrel Stranding Project

IBEC is proud to announce that it has obtained a 14-month contract with Environment and Climate Change Canada to develop and implement a feasible approach to monitor Leach’s Storm-Petrel strandings and mortality at Cape Freels.

This study will improve the understanding of the temporal and spatial scope of the issue, as well as identify the potential cause(s) of strandings and predator(s) involved. This study will fill important data gaps and, importantly, be crucial for informing potential future conservation efforts in Cape Freels and the entire Bonavista North region.

IBEC officials will seek out stranded Petrels and release them back into the wild, working with local volunteers and other interested parties. More information will be released in the coming months as the project moves forward.


Indian Bay Ecosystem Corporation Nominated for Environmental Award through Gander & Area Chamber of Commerce

IBEC is proud to announce that it has been nominated for the Environmental Award at the February 3rd Awards Gala at the Gander and Area Chamber of Commerce Joe & Clarice Goodyear Business Achievement Awards!

The Environmental Award covers several categories: level of environmental compliance, commitment to improved environmental performance, contributions to local environmental awareness, and partnerships to promote environmental stewardship.

The support we have gotten from our partners during the nomination process has been incredible! We thank those who nominated us, took the time to provide support letters, and who provide us with assistance each year on various projects.

Gander Chamber

Smelt angling opens on Southwest Pond (Greenspond Road)

Smelting season is upon us! The 2022 Smelt season will open for Southwest Pond only on Saturday, January 15th. All other inland waters will open to smelt angling on Tuesday, February 1st.

Only smelt may be retained when Southwest Pond is open for smelt angling. For more information on smelt or other angling, please check out the Angler’s Guide

Please use extreme caution when out on the ice this smelt season!

ice fishing

Inuit and local knowledge join together to assist IBEC in its Davis Strait Polar Bear Project

IBEC has obtained the services of Inuit Derrick Pottle, a Inuk elder from Rigolet, Nunatsiavut. He has lived amongst Polar Bears and Black Bears all his life. As an Inuit Polar Bear and Black Bear hunter, trapper, and guide, he teaches youth the traditional Inuit ways to carry on those skills. He became a certified Bear Guard 14 years ago and is now owner/operator of BearSafe Planning Inc. He instructs and certifies other Bear Guards throughout Canada’s Inuit regions and other regions of Canada.

Duane Collins is co-owner/operator of Hare Bay Adventures. He has worked 12 years with Parks Canada in Churchill, Manitoba. While there, he received extensive training and experience working with Polar Bears, including being a Bear Guard. He is trained in the usage of equipment and procedures of Polar Bear hazing, lethal and non-lethal deterrence, and Polar Bear biology and behaviour. He has developed and delivered public Polar Bear safety programs and trains others for Polar Bear safety and deterrence. He is certified under the Bear Wise program and Parks Canada as a Polar Bear Monitor/Guard.

Part of our Habitat Stewardship Program (HSP) project involves obtaining Aboriginal knowledge regarding their traditional ways when dealing with Polar Bears. Derrick has agreed to assist us on that angle, including assisting us with creation of our own safety program. IBEC is also lucky to have local knowledge through Duane regarding his experience and training while in Manitoba, where he still does contract work as a Bear Guard, most recently as this Fall. We look forward to working with both Derrick and Duane as we prepare our safety program, school presentations, and related work plans for 2022.

This project was undertaken with the financial support of the Government of Canada through the federal Department of Environment and Climate Change.

Ce projet a été réalisé avec l’appui financier du gouvernement du Canada agissant par l’entremise du ministère fédéral de l’Environnement et du Changement climatique.

New Habitat Stewardship Program for Species at Risk (HSP) awarded to IBEC

IBEC has been awarded funding through the HSP, a part of the federal Department of Environment and Climate Change Canada (ECCC), for a one-year Project entitled “Understanding the movement and behaviour of the sub-population of the Davis Strait Polar Bear”. This Project will continue until the end of March 2022.

The Project involves the study of the Davis Strait Polar Bear, sea ice conditions and its movement along the northeast coast of the island of Newfoundland, movement of traditional food sources of the sub-population, interaction between humans and the Davis Strait Polar Bear along the northeast coast, and an educational portion through school presentations, social media campaign, and public engagement. The Project will also involve traditional knowledge obtain from the Inuit of Labrador regarding their experiences with Polar Bears. IBEC will assist Provincial Wildlife and officials from ECCC regarding their own studies involving the sub-population where possible during this time frame.

As the Project moves forward, additional information will be released regarding public engagement and the opportunity for volunteers of all ages to become involved in this rewarding research.

This project was undertaken with the financial support of the Government of Canada through the federal Department of Environment and Climate Change.

Ce projet a été réalisé avec l’appui financier du gouvernement du Canada agissant par l’entremise du ministère fédéral de l’Environnement et du Changement climatique.

Polar Bear & Cubs

Town of Indian Bay Representative Nominated for Stewardship Association of Municipalities Executive Committee

For the first time in over two years due to the pandemic, an in-person meeting was held, allowing members, and invited guest, to attend the Fall meeting of the Stewardship Association of Municipalities (SAM) in the lovely Town of Deer Lake. SAM works with its partners in NL to secure, enhance, & restore important wildlife habitat (wetlands, uplands, coastal areas, & species at risk habitat) within municipal planning boundaries. As a network of communities who practice environmental stewardship across NL, SAM contributes to maintaining & enhancing biodiversity in the province.

The Town of Indian Bay, along with several other communities along The Shore, have signed stewardshis agreements with SAM over the past twenty plus years. These agreements allow for important wildlife habitat to flourish within these communities, while allowing members to access environmental information, utilize SAM staff, and obtain guidance on environmental concerns. During this past weekend’s Fall meeting, IBEC Manager Darren Sheppard, who has represented the Town of Indian Bay at SAM meetings over the past three plus years, accepted the nomination to become Secretary of the Executive for SAM. He joins other representatives from the Town’s of Gander, Portugal Cove-St. Phillips, and Stephenville Crossing, who are also on the Executive.

Darren would like to thank the Town Council of Indian Bay for allowing him to represent them at SAM meetings and on the Executive.

Stewardship Association of Municipalities (SAM) Conservation Biologist visits “The Shore”

September 23rd, 2021 – Earlier this week IBEC had the opportunity to host SAM Conservation Biologist Zachary Burrows as he visited the area for the first time. Zachary met with IBEC officials, who gave him a tour of Queens Meade in Newtown, our CNPP Cape Freels Project area, and our office in Indian Bay. He also met with officials from the Town of New-Wes-Valley, Indian Bay, CWT, and Carmenville, regarding their stewardship plans and to introduce himself.

We thank Zachary and Stewardship Association of Municipalities Inc for being incredible partners on various projects currently in progress and for their guidance whenever required.


Trail Improvements Throughout Watershed Have Begun

Thanks to financial support from the Indian Bay ATV Association, and donation of culverts from the NL Snowmobile Association, the first round of Trail improvements has been completed within the Watershed. Culvert replacement has occurred at 37 Branch and Camp 22 locations, with other locations to be worked on in the coming weeks and months.

Images below are of the work being done, through the contractor Oldford’s Sand & Gravel, who installed and transported the culverts into the Watershed, and supplied all rock/gravel required for the work. IBEC assisted where possible, mostly with small rock placement around the culverts after installment and cutting of brush along streams allowing for easier movement of water flow through newly installed culverts, both requested by the contractor.

The ATV Association would like to thank Oldford’s Sand and Gravel, the NL Snowmobile Federation, volunteers of the Kittiwake Snowmobile Association, and IBEC for their assistance in achieving Phase One of these improvements. More culvert installation will occur moving forward, along with other Trail improvements, through these organizations and other financial support.

Beaver Baffler systems installed in Windmill Bight

The World Wildlife Fund (WWF), with assistance from IBEC, installed two Beaver Baffler systems within Windmill Bight. These systems allow for the passage of fish through beaver dams, especially where there is active beavers. The systems allow for a passage way for fish to move through the blockage, while tricking the beaver into believing the dam is still fully in place.

These systems will be in place for a couple of months, will be monitored, data collected, and the WWF will use this information for future locations throughout the province. We thank the WWF for reaching out to IBEC for assistance with the installation and local knowledge.

Indian Bay Ecosystem Corporation (IBEC) Clothing Fundraiser!

Looking for a unique Christmas gift? Want to support an environmental non-profit? Do you just need a new t-shirt to replace that one with all the holes you still wear? Then we can take care of all your needs!

We have an assortment of IBEC t-shirts (Size S, M, L, XL, and a couple 2XL) and wool hats (one size fits all). Colours for the t-shirts are black, navy, pink, grey, and white; colours for the hats are black, navy, pink/white, and grey.

$15 each for a t-shirt (made of very good quality material) and $20 each for a wool hat (good quality, neither of us have froze yet wearing ours this past Winter). We do have a display set up at the office if folks wish to look at it and see how each piece looks. We’ll accept cash or cheque. Can consider mailing it out to folks from away, but shipping charges will be extra.

Most of the funds raised will go towards the many cleanups we have scheduled this Summer (we’ll announce our cleanups as dates approach).

Thank you to Star Creations Sewing & Supplies for the clothing and the donation of 30 of the t-shirts above and beyond our order.

Recycling Fundraiser for Trail Improvement in the Indian Bay Watershed

December 21, 2020 – IBEC has decided to try a pilot project for collecting recycling from Watershed users and the general public. Funds raised will go towards improving the trail system within the Indian Bay Watershed area. We ask those who wish to donate to place recycling, such as cans and beer bottles, inside the green bin outside of our office in Indian Bay. Special thank you to the Town of Indian Bay for donating the bin for this project.

Please, do not put garbage in the recycling bin! And do try to use blue, clear bags when placing recycling into the bin.

At the end of 2021 we’ll add up the total and announce on our social media platforms.


Trail work completed in 2020

December 9th, 2020 – IBEC, along with cabin groups, the Kittiwake Snowmobile Association, and Indian Bay ATV Association, continued to improve the trail system within the Watershed and beyond in some cases. With financial support from Minister Derrick Bragg’s office and the Department of Environment, Climate Change and Municipal Affairs, the Town of New-Wes-Valley, Corner Brook Pulp and Paper Limited, Newfoundland and Labrador Snowmobile Federation, and donations collected from cabin groups, we have been able to improve several sections of the trail system. We also received in-kind support from Cape Freels Development and the Town of Indian Bay.

Below are images taken throughout the year of the completed work. We also continued with adding more signage to various areas of the trail system, providing those not from the area a better idea of major cabin areas, directions to various communities and services.

All groups will continue to work to improve user experience of the trail system, with major funding proposals being prepared this Winter for the 2021 season and beyond. We ask everyone to support their local cabin groups if asked for donations for trail improvements, to buy their trail permits for this Winter season from the Newfoundland and Labrador Snowmobile Federation, and donate to any fundraising that promotes improvements to the trail system. Thank you.

August 5th, 2020 – A successful cleanup of the Town of Indian Bay

IBEC, along with students and employees of the Town of Indian Bay and Indian Bay Park, took the day to clean up along the highway and side roads within town limits. As you can see by the images, it was a beautiful day to do this cleanup, and we also had a lot of hands to make the job go quickly.

In the end, we took away a truckload of garbage, which included plastics, glass, siding, shingles, mats, and a bunch of other stuff. All was disposed of properly at the waste management facility on top of the hill.

Once again, thank you to all who took part to help make Indian Bay beautiful again!

July 27th, 2020 – Kittiwake Snowmobile Trail System – Signage Installation

IBEC is currently installing Phase One of signage along the Kittiwake Snowmobile Association Trail System throughout the Watershed. This signage will assist trail users in finding their way to specific communities, major bodies of water, services, and distances to each. Phase Two will occur late Summer or early Fall once we determine the best location for that round of signage.

IBEC, along with its partners, the Kittiwake Snowmobile Association and the Indian Bay ATV Association, would like to thank Minister Derrick Bragg and the Department of Municipal Affairs and Environment for its financial support, the Town of New-Wes-Valley and the Town of Indian Bay for their in-kind support, and Cape Freels Development Association for their donation of the cribbing for the signage.

Additional trail upgrades will occur over the next couple of months. Once those upgrades start, we will advise the public at that time.