We will analyze long-term monitoring data that were sampled over ten years from nearshore regions of the Great Lakes to find out key factors that cause the proliferation of nuisance benthic algae and fouling of shorelines of Lake Ontario in the Toronto–Durham region and throughout the Great Lakes. Additionally, we will test whether environmental DNA in water and sediment samples can be used to track the dispersal of nuisance benthic algae. Our project will contribute directly to the ongoing monitoring programs in the Great Lakes and will be relevant for management of nuisance benthic algae.
Red Deer College, together with the Red Deer Local Immigration Partnership (RDLIP), received Mitacs Accelerate funding to research the settlement experiences of recent immigrant men to Central Alberta. There have been concerted efforts from the federal, provincial, and municipal governments to attract and retain newcomers in mid-size cities and rural communities in Canada; nevertheless, the overall settlement experiences and needs of newcomers in these communities have not received much empirical investigation; this is especially the case among immigrant men.
Porcupine Crab (Neolithodes grimaldii) inhabits the seabed off the Coast of Newfoundland and Labrador and in the eastern Arctic as a by-catch in the turbot gillnet fishery. This research project focuses on developing automatic robotic technology for the removal of Porcupine Crab spines to ease the crab processing for potential future development of a Porcupine Crab fishery.
Climate change, land development, invasive species, and other disturbances can alter the composition, structure, and functions of native vegetation across landscapes. These disturbances also impact insect parasitoids, which are a key, and often overlooked, component of biodiversity. By their ability to control other insect populations, they are integral for fostering resilient and functional forests.
Wetlands provide critical habitat and valuable ecosystem services. Land use conversion in Ontario, however, has led to substantial wetland loss. The restoration of wetlands on agricultural properties has the potential to offset wetland loss, yet these wetlands are also susceptible to contamination by pesticides.
In this Mitacs-funded project, a postdoctoral researcher will work with partners at Trent University and Bird Studies Canada to expand our understanding of how wind turbines affect birds and bats. We will leverage an extremely detailed database on wind-wildlife interactions that is managed by Bird Canada. Using these data, we will investigate whether bat and bird mortality are affected by turbine characteristics including height and the area swept by the turbine blades.
The salmon aquaculture industry is a highly profitable industry, known to contribute significantly to the Canadian economy. During this time an ectoparasite called the sea louse may infect the salmon leading to animal welfare concerns a significant economic loss. Lumpfish are a species of cleaner fish used as a biological control for sea lice and offer a more sustainable and ecologically friendly option for sea lice management than previous chemical controls. They are a recent addition to Canadian aquaculture, and their cleaning efficacy must be well understood under Canadian conditions.
The aquaculture industry is constantly growing worldwide. Vast arrays of fish species are farmed in freshwater, brackish, and marine systems. In farms, fish reach high-population densities, which facilitates the outbreaks of infectious diseases. This is a big challenge for the aquaculture industry, particularly in the case of viral pathogens because there are few, if any, efficacious treatments against emergent and re-emergent fish viruses. Piscine orthoreovirus (PRV) is an emerging viral pathogen that causes high economic losses in the salmon farming industry.
The proposed research project will assess the insect fauna present associated with prairie wetlands, as well as those found in adjacent fields of crop plants (canola, barley, wheat) and restored grasslands. Insects will be collected using various trapping methods to sample taxa exhibiting different lifestyles. Collected specimens will be identified as specifically as possible to determine taxa found in sampled habitats.
Invasive species represent a major threat to global biodiversity, and are projected to increase in impact as globalization promotes the continued introduction of novel species. Proactive research that investigates the ecological, social, and economic threat of novel species prior to or early in their establishment is therefore critical to effective conservation planning. For our research we will be investigating the threat of cattails (Typha spp.) in the Fraser River Estuary (FRE).