Summer Student Gaining Valuable Work Experience

Lashawnee Myo joined the Gespe’gewa’gi Institute of Natural Understanding (GINU) this summer to gain experience working in the science field. Lashawnee has worked closely with our research department. She has shared with us all about her experiences being part of our team.

During my time working at GINU, I had the opportunity to work with many different people and learn new things while being on the field. Despite there being some language barriers, I’ve learnt how to do substrate analysis and fill in data sheets. I’ve learned how to use the flow tracker and to check flow, depth, temperatures, and coordinates. I’ve gotten to help electro fish and caught some good size trout in the process.

During my summer employment, I collected and sorted samples of microinvertebrates and learned their different names. I had the opportunity to do a dissection on a trout and collect a stomach and tissue sample and learn how eDNA works. I had the chance to filter a sample that will be sent to a lab. They can see what type of fish have been in those waters through the traces of cells in the sample. I got to see how they create maps and thermal maps using the drone.

I also learned how to get water samples for water quality and how to change thermographs. Overall, I learnt a lot while working at GINU and this line of work is something that I am interested in pursuing. I had a lot of fun working here this summer.


The Gespe’gewa’gi Institute of Natural Understanding (GINU) annually deploys thermographs in several rivers in Quebec and New Brunswick. These small temperature loggers are anchored to the riverbed in 20 to 30 different locations throughout the Restigouche River Watershed.

Our team replaces the thermographs twice a year, to change their batteries and download their information. As climate change concerns increase, the importance of this research grows in importance.

“It is important to know what is going on with our river system. The water is warming up. Climate change has an impact on everything in the river and monitoring changes over time will  help us make well informed decisions,” explained GINU biologist Billie Chiasson.

The data collected is shared with a network group comprised of universities, federal and provincial agencies, and watershed groups. This information is shared in a centralized database called Rivtemp. GINU has been conducting water temperature research since 2014 and will continue to monitor the river temperatures on our territory.


Have You Seen Me?

GINU is asking for your knowledge on Wood Turtle on our territory.  Please contact us with any information you have. Participants will have their name entered into a draw for a gift card.


Launch of Smolt Wheel on the Matapedia River

The Gespe’gewa’gi Institute of Natural Understanding (GINU) field season has officially kicked off with the launch of a smolt wheel on the Matapedia River. The smolt wheel is a rotary screw trap floating in the river, and it collects juvenile Atlantic salmon out migrating to the ocean.

The captured smolts are measured, tagged and then released. The smolt wheel was placed in the river on May 15th and will be removed around June 10th.

Message from GINU Executive Director John Murvin Vicaire

With great pleasure and excitement, we announce that the Gespe’gewag Mi’gmaq Resource Council (GMRC) is now known as the Gespe’gewa’gi Institute of Natural Understanding (GINU). We chose a name that better reflects who we are today and a name that reflects the people who allow us to work on their behalf.

Since 2006, GMRC has worked diligently in the areas of research, Mi gmaw knowledge, as well as outreach and education. Since then, the organization has evolved into what it is today; a leading research organization that also happens to be Indigenous.

We wouldn’t be where we are today without the hard work and dedication of those who formed the GMRC. Without the leadership of our member communities (Ugpi’ganjig, Pabineau, Listuguj) and Mark Sark, we would likely not be here today.

I would also like to highlight the strong leadership of my predecessors. We still feel the effects of their commitment, professionalism, and integrity. And to all previous employees, you have left your imprint on this organization and will forever be a part of our legacy.

While this may signal the end of an era, I assure you that the best is yet to come. Our member communities, our people, and the natural world drive us to be better and more effective in ensuring that the ecosystems in which we live continue to thrive for the next seven generations.

John Murvin Vicaire
Executive Director

The Gespe’gewaq Mi’gmaq Resource Council (GMRC) Announces Rebrand

After 16 years of continuous growth, the GMRC will now be known as the Gespe’gewa’gi Institute of Natural Understanding (GINU).

(Listuguj, April 21, 2023)—The Gespe’gewaq Mi’gmaq Resource Council has completed its rebranding with the launch of the Gespe’gewa’gi Institute of Natural Understanding (GINU). As we have continued to grow throughout the years, our organization has gone through many changes.  We will continue to work for our membership communities of Listuguj, Ugpi’ganjig and Pabineau, being guided by our mission and vision statements. Ginu’s mission is “to ensure the ecosystems in which we live continue to thrive for the next seven generations”. Our vision states we are “an evolving organization that is a trusted partner to the Mi’gmaq communities it is serving.”

Ginu has grown from five full-time staff members to currently employing 11 staff. We are governed by a Board of Directors who are comprised of Chiefs from our membership communities.  Our core activities include habitat management and stewardship, research and collection of Mi’gmaq Ecological Knowledge. Our work is also guided by using a two-eyed seeing approach developed by Dr. Albert Marshall. Two-eyed seeing is using Mi’gmaq Knowledge and Western Science when conducting research. Ginu will also continue with our research endeavours as we move forward with the rebranding. We also look forward to continuing to build partnerships with First Nations governments, organizations, public and private stakeholders.


Media Contact:

Charlene LaBillois
Communications Officers
Gespe’gewa’gi Institute of Natural Understanding (GINU)

(418) 788-3017

GMRC Reconnecting Rivers

Happy Halloween From GMRC

The staff at GMRC want to wish everyone a happy and safe halloween.