Donald S. Clark

Ecosystem Survey Biologist

Current research and/or projects

  • Led collaborative study on cod migration which included participation of the Centre for community Based Management, the Shelburne Co. Hook and Line Fishermen’s Association and the Inshore Dragger (ITQ) fleet. 
  • Has contributed to assessment methodology by challenging the assumptions that survey catchability and natural mortality are unvarying parameters.
  • Has been a leader in including information from the commercial fishery on distribution and species composition in stock assessments and species at risk reviews.
  • Pioneered the use of telemetry in fish behaviour studies in Atlantic Canada.

Research and/or project statements

Mr. Clark is an experienced and innovative biologist who has fostered close ties with many in the fishing industry.  He has been able to collaborate with a range of fishing industry associations and non-government organizations to study the biology and bevaviour of marine fish and has been successful in soliciting funding to support biological investigations.  He has a broad range of experience in marine biology ranging from aquaculture to fish behaviour and taxonomy to assessment methodology.

Professional activities / interests

  • Biologist – Ecology and Assessment, Acoustic studies 1991-2006
  • Research Associate Ocean Science Centre, Memorial University of Newfoundland 1989-1991.

Education and awards

  • B.Sc. Hon. (Biology), 1983 –  University of Saskatchewan
  • M.Sc. (Biology), 1989 – Memorial University of Newfoundland

Key publications

  • Annual cod stock assessments, CSAS Research Documents; 1995-present.
  • Clark, D. S. and J. M. Green, 1990. Activity and movement patterns of juvenile Atlantic cod, Gadus morhua, in Conception Bay, Newfoundland, as determined by sonic telemetry. Can. J. Zool. 68: 1434-1442.
  • Harold, A. S., and D. S. Clark, 1990. First record of the subtropical lightfish Ichthyococus ovatus (Photichthyidae) from the Canadian Atlantic region and its biogeographic significance. Naturaliste Can. 117: 123-126.
  • Clark, D. S., and J. M. Green, 1991. Seasonal variation in temperature preference of juvenile Atlantic cod (Gadus morhua), with evidence supporting an energetic basis for their diel vertical migration. CAN. J. ZOOL. 69, pp. 1302-1307.
  • Clark, D. S. 1993. The influence of depth and bottom type on area swept by groundtrawl, and consequences for survey indices and population estimates. CSAS Res. Doc. 93/40.
  • Clark, D. S. 1995 Use of a reduced time-series for the assessment of 4X cod. SSSC WP 95/40.
  • Clark, DS, J.A. Brown, S. J. Goddard and J.  Moir, 1995. Activity and feeding behaviour of Atlantic cod (Gadus morhua) in sea pens. Aquaculture, pp. 49-57.
  • Clark, D. S., J. Neilson, P. Hurley, P. Perley and M. Fowler, 1998.  Shifts in fishing effort, commercial landings and resource distribution for cod, haddock, pollock, and white hake in NAFO division 4X. CSAS Res. Doc. 98/58.
  • Clark, D. S. and S. Cadrin, 2001. Groundfish distribution and stock structure. In Clark, S.; O’Boyle, R, convenors. 2001. Proceedings of the 14th Canada-USA scientific discussions, January 22-25, 2001. MBL Conference Center, Woods Hole, Massachusetts. NEFSC Ref. Doc. 01-07; 52p.
  • Neilson, J. D., D. S. Clark, G. D. Melvin P. Perley and C. Stevens, 2003. The diel vertical distribution and characteristics of pre-spawning aggregations of pollock (Pollachius virens) as inferred from hydroacoustic observations: the implications for survey design. ICES journal of marine science, 60: 860-871
  • Clark, D. S. 2005 Western Scotian Shelf Cod. In  Spawning and life history information for North Atlantic cod stocks. ICES Cooperative Research Report, No 274. 152 pp.

Research facility

125 Marine Science Drive
St. Andrews, NB E5B 0E4



Mr. Clark was the successful candidate in the recent competition to lead the Regional Ecosystem Survey program. He has begun expanding the role of the Ecosystem Surveys to include monitoring of a wider range of biotia,  to cover a broader vertical range in the water column and to improve coordination with survey programs in adjacent jurisdictions.