The University of Victoria

  Department of Geography

Lab Overview

We explore two main foci: 1) biogeochemical exchanges across ecosystem boundaries from the perspective of spatial subsidies; and 2) wildlife-habitat interactions.  We match taxa with the questions/hypotheses of interest. 

From a species-perspective, our work has dealt with coyotes, caribou, deer, moose, grizzly bears, a number of avian species including waterfowl, grassland birds and woodpeckers, Geographically, our research has taken place in the Mackenzie Delta (NWT), the Rockies and adjacent Purcell Mountains, northern Manitoba, the US Great Plains and coastal British Columbia.

Current projects focus on 

•	endangered mountain caribou and predation risk in the South Purcell Mountains, 

•	habitat selection by woodpeckers in post-fire landscapes,

•	the Modifiable Areal Unit Problem (MAUP) and consequences for estimating wildlife home ranges,

•	use of harvest data to understand changes in the distribution and abundance of mule deer and white-tailed deer in BC during the last 25 years, and

•	impacts of salvage logging on patterns of moose habitat use and movement.

New Research Opportunities

In a collaboration between the lab and UVic climatologist Dr. Johan Feddema we seek a keen and hard-working MSc candidate to join in a study of the effects of climate change on moose including range contraction and habitat use at regional and biogeographic range scales.   Ideal qualifications include some background in ecology, strong quantitative skills and an interest in modelling.  Programming experience (e.g., in R, Python) would be an asset but not required.

There may also be opportunity for a MSc student interested changes in bird populations in the Okanagan Valley in relation to cattle grazing and other human disturbance.

I welcome inquires from prospective graduate students on other possible projects including ideas of their own.

South Purcells Mountains, Radio-collard caribou  - Dave Heagy

Bonaparte Plateau moose  - Chris Procter


. . . to the Landscape and Wildlife Ecology Lab at the University of Victoria

Our research is strongly rooted in ecology and biology, with an equal connection to geography, all grounded in questions concerning ecosystem processes, wildlife ecology, and conservation science.

caribou photo - Dave Heagy