H. Liu, J. Li

Department of Geography, University of Waterloo, Waterloo, Ontario, Canada N2L 3G1


This paper presents a study on the design and implementation of a Web-based Geographic Information Systems (GIS) application to support effective management of fish species at risk (FSAR) in Ontario, Canada. By using Internet and GIS technologies, a fish distribution management application was created and implemented for the Department of Fishery and Ocean Canada (DFO) in the Ontario Great Lake Area (OGLA). The study goal is to implement an Intranet based fish species viewing and querying system that would allow users to obtain information about fish species at risk. WebGIS provides an easy and inexpensive way for the biologists and environmental scientists to access fish species at risk information with web browsers.


The proposed WebGIS system not only includes common GIS mapping tools to navigate the map and geospatial data, such as Zoom In, Zoom Out and Pan, it also provides specific geospatial search engine tools and fish species reporting tools. The geospatial search engine tools make the user easy to find the geospatial features with simple steps of operations. The geospatial search engine tools include Gazetteer Search Tool, Topographic Search Tool, and Quick Zoom Search. The fish species reporting tools can display the species list including species at risk by tertiary watershed or by stream segment while the user navigates to the area of interest on the map. The reporting tools also provide species at risk info, species drawing (image), and species at risk distribution maps. With the implementation of the proposed system, the web-based GIS application, Ontario Aquatic Maps Explorer, is now running on DFO Intranet and has more than one hundred users.