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Commercial Fishing on Lake Winnipeg



Lake and Waterhsed Facts

Lake Winnipeg is the 10th largest body of freshwater in the world, covering 24,000 square kilometers, and the second largest watershed in Canada. It serves a variety of recreation and commercial uses including fishing, angling and boating as well as providing a unique habitat for fish and organisms. The watershed (953,000 square kilometres) includes four provinces (Manitoba, Ontario, Saskatchewan, Alberta) and four U.S. States (North Dakota, South Dakota, Minnesota and Montana). The Lake Winnipeg watershed is home to 5.5 million people, 80% live in eight urban centers. Approximately 20 million livestock live in the watershed.

Who Uses Lake Winnipeg?
* FISHERIES with an annual landed value approaching $25 million. Loss of the fisheries would cause social disruption of fisheries based communities.

* MANITOBA HYDRO uses Lake Winnipeg as the third largest reservoir in the world. Manitoba Hydro generates $350 - 580 million per year in export power sales.

* RECREATION and TOURISM, which generates more than $100 million per year.

* DOWNSTREAM COMMUNITIES on the Nelson River rely on the water quality of the lake for drinking water and indigenous fisheries. Lake Winnipeg water quality influences the productivity and biota found in the Nelson delta of Hudson Bay.

Check back soon for new Lake Facts about Lake Winnipeg!

Other General Water Facts:?

Because 70% of the Earth is covered by water, it is called the ‘Blue Planet’. Yet only 2.5% of the world’s water is freshwater, while 97.5% is oceans.

Only 0.3% of the world’s freshwater is available from rivers, lakes and reservoirs; 30% is groundwater, while the rest is stored in distant glaciers, ice sheets, and mountainous areas – all places that we can hardly access.

About two thirds of the human body is water. Some parts of the body contain more water than others. For example, 70% of your skin is water.

You can survive about a month without food, but only 5 to 7 days without water.

Most of our food is made up of water: tomatoes (95%), spinach (91%), milk (90%), apples (85%), potatoes (80%), beef (61%), hot dogs (56%).

More than half of the world's animal and plant species live in an aquatic environment.

Lake Baikal, situated in south-east Siberia, is the oldest (25 million years) and deepest (1,700 m) lake in the world. It contains 20% of the world's total unfrozen freshwater reserve. Known as the 'Galapagos of Russia', its age

Within 25 years, half the world’s population could have trouble finding enough freshwater for drinking and irrigation.

Currently, over 80 countries, representing 40% of the world’s people, are subject to serious water shortages. Conditions may get worse in the next 50 years as populations grow and as global warming disrupts rainfall patterns.

A third of the world lives in water stressed areas where consumption outstrips supply.

South West Asia faces the greatest threat. Over 90% of the region’s population is experiencing severe water stress, with water consumption exceeding 10% of renewable freshwater resources.

These and other Water Facts can be found on the Environment Canada website:

Lake Winnipeg Watershed Map/Fact Sheet (PDF)
Lake Winnipeg Stewarship Board Brochure (2003):





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