18 - 21 June 2018 - Duluth Entertainment Convention Center

Duluth, Minnesota, USA

Great Lakes Fishery Commission logo Great Lakes Fishery Trust logo Vemco logo


The genus Salvelinus (charrs) contains the northernmost freshwater fish species on earth that also exhibits the most remarkable polymorphism of all vertebrates. Our knowledge and understanding of the evolution, ecology, and biology of charrs has increased greatly in recent decades, aided by growing research and development of new technologies. Climate change, impacts of non-native fishes, and restoration/conservation of charr species have become an international focus and sustainable management of all charr remains a major challenge, especially at the southern limits of their range.

This 9th International Charr Symposium will gather scientists with an interest in charr biology from the whole distribution of the genus, and will disseminate the latest research findings within a broad range of topics. The symposium will also provide a unique forum for networking and developing research collaborations. Our aim is to publish the proceedings of the symposium in a special issue of Hydrobiologia (impact factor 2.051). Additionally, selected sessions from the symposium will be used in a forthcoming book on the lake charr (S. namaycush).

The charr symposium series has a long history from its origins in Winnipeg, Canada in 1981 to locations around the northern hemisphere: Sapporo, Japan (1988), Trondheim, Norway (1994), Trois-Rivières, Canada (2000), Reykjavik, Iceland (2006), Stirling, Scotland (2009), Yuzhno-Sakhalinsk, Russia (2012), and Tromsø, Norway (2015). In 2018, the symposium will take place for the first time in the United States, in Duluth, Minnesota, on the shores of Lake Superior, where the lake charr and brook charr (S. fontinalis) thrive and have supported prosperous fisheries for centuries.

North America is home to more charr species than any other continent on earth, with three indigenous species, the lake charr, brook charr, and bull charr (S. confluentus), and two holarctic species, the Arctic char (S. alpinus) and Dolly Varden (S. malma). The only charr species not represented in North America are the white-spotted charr (S. leucomaenis) and the stone char of Kamchatka (scientific name unresolved). The 9th International Charr Symposium hopes to see research on all charr species!

Abstracts & Posters

Thank you for your interest but abstract submittal is closed.


Confirmed keynote speakers:

  • Louis Bernatchez - Université Laval
  • Thomas Binder - Michigan State University
  • Dan Schill - Idaho Department of Fish and Game
  • Skúli Skúlason - Hólar University College
  • Ian Winfield - Centre for Ecology & Hydrology

Sessions will include:

  • Aquaculture
  • Charr Management/Charrs as Exotic Invaders
  • Cultural anthropology
  • Distribution, Paleoecology & Glacial Ecology
  • Genetics and Evolution
  • Movement, Behavior, & Habitat
  • The Other Charrs
  • Parasites and Predators
  • Population Ecology & Dynamics & Life History
  • Reproductive Ecology & Developmental Ontogeny & Physiology
  • Taxonomy and Systematics
  • Toxicology & Pollution
  • Trophic Ecology


A 3-4 day post-symposium excursion is planned to various Lake Superior sights, including the Split Rock Lighthouse, North Shore Commercial Fishing Museum, Grand Portage National Monument and a boat trip either to Isle Royale National Park or along the scenic Lake Superior shoreline near Grand Portage, MN. Minnesota's North Shore is renowned for its incredible natural beauty, charming small towns, and fascinating history.

Participation will be limited to 40-60 attendees on a first-come, first-served basis. If you’re interested in attending the excursion, please fill out the Google Form on the Registration page to indicate your interest.


Please fill out the form below to be notified of future announcements.

Traveling to Duluth

Getting in

Duluth International Airport (DLH) offers daily service to Minneapolis/Saint Paul, Detroit, and Chicago. Additionally, service is offered occasionally and sometimes seasonally to Las Vegas, Phoenix, and Orlando.

Airlines serving Duluth International Airport include Allegiant Air, Delta Airlines, and United Airlines.

The Inn on Lake Superior offers a complimentary shuttle from the airport for hotel guests (see Accommodations). For other transportation options from the airport, see http://duluthairport.com/before-you-arrive/transportation-directions/taxi-service/.

Travelers may also choose to fly to Minneapolis-Saint Paul International Airport (MSP) and rent a car. Duluth is about a 2.5 hour drive from MSP. There is also a shuttle from MSP that stops directly at the Duluth Entertainment Convention Center (two blocks from symposium hotels) for $42/one way (2017 rate).

Duluth is served by both Greyhound and Jefferson Lines buses. The main bus terminal for both bus lines is located at 4426 Grand Ave.

Getting around

All conference venues and hotels, and many downtown attractions and restaurants, are easily accessed on foot.

Recommended taxi companies:

Allied Taxi - (218) 481-8204

Custom Cab Company - (218) 341-9711

Duluth is also served by app-based ride services Uber and Lyft.

General information on visas

Visitors from many countries are permitted to travel to the United States for business or tourism for stays of up to 90 days without a visa through the Visa Waiver Program. See https://travel.state.gov/content/visas/en/visit.html for more information.


Group room blocks have been reserved at three hotels in Canal Park, directly across from the main symposium venue:

Canal Park Lodge - $129/night. Limited rooms available at government rate. To make reservations, call 218-279-6000 or 800-777-8560 and mention group name "2018 Intl CHARR Symposium." Rooms must be booked by May 18, 2018.

Inn on Lake Superior - $129-169/night. Limited rooms available at government rate. To make reservations, call 888-668-4352 and mention group name "Great Lakes Fishery Commission." Rooms must be booked by May 18, 2018.

Comfort Suites Canal Park - $159-179/night. Limited rooms available at government rate. To make reservations, call (218) 727-1378 and mention group name "2018 International CHARR Symposium." Rooms must be booked by May 17, 2018.

Free on-site parking is available for guests at all three hotels.

Symposium venues

Things to do in Duluth

Duluth is a vibrant city full of things to do, from hiking to exploring museums and galleries to enjoying fine dining and local breweries. See http://www.visitduluth.com and https://www.lonelyplanet.com/usa/great-lakes/duluth for more information.

Area Fishing Opportunities

Explore the region

The North Shore region of Minnesota boasts spectacular natural beauty and quaint towns full of shops, galleries, and restaurants. Visit http://www.northshorevisitor.com for ideas.

The Apostle Islands National Lakeshore is located in Wisconsin less than a two-hour drive from Duluth.

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