Fisheries Ecology and Management The primary goal of my research program is to understand the suite of processes that control growth and survival of juvenile fishes and lead to variability in recruitment into adult stocks. This "recruitment problem" is at the core of many issues in both basic and applied fisheries population biology and underlies most research that my students and I are involved in. We use a combination of whole lake experiments, observations in nature, laboratory experiments and simulation models to explore these processes at a range of spatial and temporal scales.
Current foci include experimental studies aimed at understanding the importance of exploitative and interference competition and predation in size-structured fish populations. We are examining habitat choice and profitability, diet, growth rates, vulnerability to predation and survival rates of juveniles and adults in populations that vary in density and size-structure. We are also examining ontogenetic patterns in trade-offs of energy allocation to somatic growth, storage for overwinter survival and reproduction. A key basic issue in this research is how we scale from individual behaviour and energetics to population level phenomena.
Applied studies include assessments of impacts of climate change on thermal behaviour, energetics and population dynamics of mountain, prairie, and northern fishes. We are also developing bioenergetic models to assess instream flow needs for riverine fishes. We also examine the demography of collapse and recovery of several species of harvested fishes including Brook Trout in Canadian Mountain Parks, Rainbow and Lake Trout in British Columbia and anadromous stocks of Arctic Char in Nunavut. Large scale adaptive management experiments and simulation models are used to optimize the management of Canadian freshwater fisheries.
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