Research

Researchers walking through marshlandResearch areas

  • Response of wetland communities to disturbances including agricultural and urban land use and invasive species,
  • Optimization of environmental monitoring programs,
  • Ecological assessments,
  • Design criteria and indicators for wetlands constructed as part of reclamation or compensation,
  • The influence of landscape context on ecological integrity – culminating in the need to treat aquatic habitats as components of an ecohydrologic network. 

Ongoing research

  • Impacts of invasion by Phragmites australis ssp. australis on plant and bird communities in Great Lakes coastal marshes
  • Study of the marshes in the Columbia River Floodplain and the influence of the annual flood pulse on diversity and plant community composition
  • Reclamation and monitoring of wetlands on and adjacent to oil sands mine leases in Alberta
  • The relationship between various bioindicator groups and the extent of human disturbance acting on an ecosystem
  • The influence of landscape context on ecological integrity and ecosystem service provision
  • How restoration priorities should be identified
  • How restoration incentive schemes should be assessed
  • How to undertake policy responsive research
  • How biomonitoring programs should be designed to achieve differing monitoring objectives

Sorting submersed vegetation

Current projects

  • Creating and validating field-based assessment tools for non-permanent marshes and riparian wetlands in Prairie and Parkland Alberta
  • Connecting climate projections and hydrologic models to ecological habitat classifications to identify potentially self-sustaining reclamation targets in Alberta’s oil sands region
  • Quantifying candidate indicators of wetland health from plant, bird, invertebrate, and microbial communities
  • Investigating competition using the model of invasive and resident plant species
  • The assessment of aggregate landscape properties as a means to characterize naturally occurring landscape properties within watersheds

Drying sediment samples