WCS Canada

2011 Fellows

Ontario Northern  Boreal

John Benson, Trent University, (PhD Candidate) is examining hybridization between eastern wolves, gray wolves, and coyotes in the Algonquin Provincial Park and region. His work will help guide wolf conservation efforts in this region.
  John F. Benson, Karen M. Loveless, Linda Y. Rutledge, Brent R. Patterson. Ungulate predation and ecological roles of wolves and coyotes in eastern North America. Ecological Applications, 2017; 

Benson JF, Patterson BR, and Wheeldon TJ. 2012. Spatial genetic and morphologic structure of wolves and coyotes in relations to environmental heterogeneity in a Canis hybrid zone. Molecular Ecology 21: 5934-5954.

Benson JF, Patterson BR. 2013. Inter-specific territoriality in a Canis hybrid zone: spatial segregation between wolves, coyotes, and hybrids. Oecologia. DOI: 10.1007/s00442-013-2730-8. 

Benson JF, Patterson BR. 2013. Moose (Alces alces) predation by eastern coyotes (Canis latrans) and eastern coyote x eastern wolf (Canis latrans x Canis lycaon) hybrids. Canadian Journal of Zoology 91:837-841. DOI: 10.1139/cjz-2013-0160.

Benson JF, Mills KJ, Loveless KM, Patterson BR. 2013. Genetic and environmental influences on pup mortality risk for wolves and coyotes within a Canis hybrid zone. Biological Conservation 166:133-141. DOI: 10.1016/j.biocon.2013.06.018.

Benson JF, Patterson BR, Mahoney PJ. 2014. A protected area influences genotype-specific survival and the structure of a Canis hybrid zone. Ecology 95(2): 254-264. DOI: 10.1890/13-0698.1.
Kathryn E. Hargan, Queens’ University (PhD Candidate), is studying the ecological communities captured in fossil records in peatlands in the Hudson Bay Lowlands to understand how these communities have evolved and adapted over thousands of years of climate change to support adaption and mitigation strategies in northern Ontario. 

Hargan, K.E., Nelligan, C., Jeziorski, A. et al. Tracking the long-term responses of diatomsand cladocerans to climate warming and human influences across lakes of the Ring of Fire in the Far North of Ontario, Canada J Paleolimnol (2016) 56: 153. doi:10.1007/s10933-016-9901-7

Kathryn E. Hargan et al. 2015. The influence of water-table depth and pH on the spatial distribution of diatom species in peatlands of the Boreal Shield and Hudson Plains, Canada. Botany  93:57-74, 10.1139/cjb-2014-0138


Northern Boreal Mountains

Shirley Roburn, Concordia University (PhD Candidate), is examining a conservation campaign in support of the Porcupine caribou herd, whose range encompasses a large swath of boreal forest and arctic tundra in the Yukon and Northwest Territories.  Her goal is to identify those features of a conservation campaign (scientific data, story-telling, artistic involvement, political lobbying) that contribute most to the campaign’s success.
Krista Sittler, University of Northern British Columbia (MSc Candidate), is studying the influences of prescribed fire on habitat choice and risk of predation to elk and thinhorn sheep in the Muskwa-Kechika region of the northern Rocky Mountains in British Columbia.  Her goal is to gain knowledge of how often and where this management technique should be applied for conservation ends. 
Guilherme Verocai, University of Calgary (PhD Candidate), is conducting an inventory of parasites in woodland caribou across boreal Canada.  His work will increase our understanding of the distribution, prevalence and ultimately population effects of these parasites, whose effect on caribou may be changing as parasite ranges shift with climate changes.