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Fish Habitat Restoration – Instream Techniques


The Fish Habitat Restoration (FHR) – Instream Techniques course will provide skills and knowledge to successfully conduct and manage an instream restoration project specific to low-gradient stream environments. This two-day, classroom-based course will provide skills and knowledge to successfully conduct site selection, habitat assessment, construction techniques and other key considerations for a variety of in-stream restoration projects, including riffle and groyne design (Newbury Riffle design principles), aeration, bank stabilization, creation of spawning/rearing habitat , and opportunities for rehabilitation in salt lakes (unique to the Canadian prairies). Methodologies for evaluating the functionality of rehabilitation projects and the establishment of funding partnerships will also be reviewed. This course will include class-based presentations, case studies and group discussions. Participants are encouraged to bring their own FHR case studies and project specifications for discussion and group assignments.

FHR – Instream Techniques is one in a series of NRTG Fish Habitat Restoration training programs currently offered, including Fish Habitat Restoration – Off-Channel Techniques and Fish Habitat Restoration – Field Techniques. Each program focuses on a specific area of restoration and is designed to compliment our other FHR training program(s). These courses may be completed in any order.

Note: The FHR – Instream Techniques course is now offered in two versions; fully online (scheduled mid-October to end of March) and a blended option that includes two days of online training with a subsequent and scheduled one-day field practicum.

Each NRTG course includes free, lifetime admission. Enrol once – come back anytime.


Great course! Really liked the expertise of instructors and course practicality.

-Kristin Singer, DFO Biologist, Nanaimo, BC

The wealth of knowledge and experience of the instructors is really quite impressive! Very informative course!

-Tanya Katamay-Smith, Environmental Supervisor, Vancouver, BC

Real-world examples were great. I really liked the mix of class and field, and hearing what worked, and didn’t, and the theory behind the design followed by field trips to view examples firsthand.

-Suzanne Earle, DFO Biologist, Vancouver, B.C.

A great course for both regulators and practitioners!

-Tina Hoffart, Biologist, Revelstoke, BC

Great course! Two very knowledgeable instructors, with loads of excellent examples and lessons.

-Jennifer Johnson, Biologist, Vancouver, BC

Course was great, really liked the real life experiences, discussion of what worked and what didn’t work, and design features to incorporate.

– Jennifer Sarchuk, Biologist, Surrey, BC

Really liked the general knowledge of the instructors and their real-world knowledge and examples of what works and lessons learned. Great course!

-Lindsay Knezevich, DFO Biologist, Vancouver, BC

There was a lot of great and useful detail. Very interesting content to know how to design habitat for different fish species.

– Chelsea Nerpio, Biologist Vancouver, BC


Upon successful completion, participants will be able to:   

  • Identify types of instream fish habitat restoration options and methods
  • Identify and apply stream hydrology and river engineering principles
  • Conduct a preliminary reconnaissance for a potential instream FHR project
  • Identify key biological factors to consider and incorporate into FHR planning
  • Identify and contrast physical design considerations and project selection criteria for in-channel restoration techniques, and in-stream habitat offset and compensation/mitigation projects
  • Evaluate the functionality of rehabilitation projects
  • Identify sources of funding
  • Identify key scheduling considerations for a Fish Habitat Restoration project

Who enrolls in the FHR – Instream Techniques course?

Course participants may include technicians, biologists and other professionals required to conduct, design and manage fish habitat restoration projects. 


There are no formal prerequisites. However, a basic knowledge of statistics would be an asset. Previous experience with Fish Habitat Assessment or completion of NRTG’s Fish Habitat Assessment – Level One course is recommended.

What should I bring?

This course is 100% classroom-based. Participants should bring/supply writing pad, pen/pencils and a laptop (coffee/tea is provided, while lunch is not provided). Also, bring your case studies or projects! We’ll do our best to incorporate your projects into the course content. For further information, please contact NRTG.

How do I Attend? 

This course is available via our website Schedule Page, or on contract to organizations/community groups. The FHR – Instream Techniques course is regularly scheduled for community-based deliveries throughout the year. Interested groups or organizations can also arrange for an ‘in-house’ or contract delivery of this course. In either scenario, contact NRTG for further information.

If you would like to have this course delivered to your group or community, please consider the following:

  1. Contact us well in advance of your preferred course start date
  2. If applicable, secure program funding
  3. Recruit course participants (most NRTG courses have minimum enrollments of 10 participants)
  4. Coordinate course participant equipment, classroom facility, and contractual agreement with NRTG.

Check our course Schedule page for upcoming course deliveries. 


Jeff Sereda, PhD.

Senior Fisheries Ecologist, Adjunct Professor University of Saskatchewan

Jeff holds a PhD. in Limnology and an Aquaculture Technician Diploma. He served a manager of a
commercial salmonid hatchery for 4 years, lectured at the University of Saskatchewan on topics of on fish physiology, taxonomy, ecology, conservation, and aquaculture. Currently, Jeff is a Senior Habitat and Population Ecologist with the Saskatchewan Government and an Adjunct Professor at the University of Saskatchewan. Jeff research has encompassed topics such as assessing the risk of lakes to anthropogenic eutrophication, macrophyte management, fish habitat restoration, and the impacts of water management on species as risk (Bigmouth Buffalo, Chestnut Lamprey, Mountain Sucker, and Lake Sturgeon). Jeff’s research has been presented at over 60 national and international conferences and resulted in 15 peer reviewed publications.

Frequently Asked Questions

We offer this fully online course year-round. 

This course includes a two-day online presentation, case study examinations and group discussions. Presentations.

Participants should bring/supply writing pad, pen/pencils and a laptop (coffee/tea is provided, while lunch is not provided). Also, bring your case studies or projects! We will do our best to incorporate your projects into the course content.

The online FHR Instream course includes planning and design-level training and are appropriate for anyone responsible for planning, designing, constructing, and monitoring instream restoration projects and programs. The classroom and field-based Fish Habitat Restoration course classroom and field-based course is designed for anyone conducting fish habitat restoration off-channel projects.  The online and field-based Fish Habitat Restoration-Field Techniques course is designed for field personnel conducting fish habitat restoration field activities associated with instream and off-channel restoration projects.

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