pic08CURRENT GRADUATE STUDENTS (supervised and co-supervised)

Shannon Landovskis, M.Sc. student (Dalhousie University): Movement, seasonal use and distribution of American lobster (Homarus americanus) through the Bras d’Or Lakes, 2019- present

Montana McLean, Ph.D. student (Dalhousie University): Understanding the physiological and behavioural consequences of catch-and-release angling on white sturgeon, Acipenser transmontanus, 2013- present

Mili Sanchez, M.Sc. student (Dalhousie University): Maternal energy allocation and investment in grey seals, 2018 – present

Benia Nowak, M.Sc. (2019): Fine-meso scale habitat use and movements of grey seals in relation to seasonal oceanography


Jake Brownscomb (Ph.D. 2016, Carleton University)

Damian Lidgard (Ph.D. 2004, Université de LaRochelle, France)



Jamie Russell

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FORMER GRADUATE STUDENTS (supervised and co-supervised, all or portion of thesis work)

Katie Studholme, M.Sc. (2018). Nonbreeding distributions and potential carryover effects in a sentinel North Pacific seabird, the Cassin’s auklet

Laurie Baker, M.Sc. (2014). Free-ranging marine mammals: the next acoustic ships of opportunity?

Susan Heaslip, M.Sc. (2014). Using animal-borne cameras to study the foraging behaviour of large marine predators

John Maniscalco, Ph.D. (2014) University of Alaska Fairbanks. Diet, vital rates, and population trends of Steller sea lions in Kenai Fjords, Alaska

Alison Banks, M.Sc. (2012) University of Alaska Fairbanks. Variability in population trends, life history characteristics, and milk composition of northern fur seals in Alaska

Wade Blanchard, Ph.D. (2011) Dalhousie University. A Bayesian approach to predicting predator diets using quantitative fatty acid signature analysis

Jennifer Kelly, Ph.D. (2011) Dalhousie University. Trophic consequences of invasive species in subtidal communities in eastern Canada: application of fatty acid signatures to understanding the fate of competing primary production

Robert Kinley, Ph.D. (2011) Nova Scotia Agricultural College. Metabolism and transfer of n-3 fatty acids into bovine milk from algal-based diets

Jacinthe Piche, Ph.D. (2011) Dalhousie University, Quebec scholar. Ecology and trophic relationships among fishes and invertebrates in the Northwest Hawaiian Islands using fatty acid signatures

Shelley Lang, Ph.D. (2009) Dalhousie University. The influence of parity on milk composition, milk secretory capacity and other aspects of lactation performance in a capital breeding mammal, the grey seal (Halichoerus grypus)

Heather Smith, Ph.D. (2009) University of Washington. Fatty acid variation in beluga (Delphinapterus leucas) blubber and implications for estimating diet using fatty acids

Corey Williams, Ph.D. (2008) University of Alaska Fairbanks. Foraging ecology and nutritional stress of tufted puffins (fratercula cirrhata) inferred from stable isotopes, fatty acid signatures, and field endocrinology

Matthew Logan, M.Sc. (2007) Memorial University. Aspects of foraging in Leach’s storm petrel

Strahan Tucker, Ph.D. (2007) Dalhousie University, Quebec Scholar. Determining sources of variation in diets of northern phocids using stable isotopes and quantitative fatty acid signature analysis

Hector Douglas, Ph.D. (2006) University of Alaska Fairbanks. Odors, ornaments, and fatty acids in the crested auklet (Aethia cristatella): indices of mate quality and environmental change

Greg Thiemann, Ph.D. (2006) Dalhousie University, NSERC scholar, Killam Scholar. Continental scale variation in polar bear (Ursus maritimus) diets and the fatty acid signatures of their marine mammal prey

Margi Copper, Ph.D. (2005) Dalhousie University, NSERC scholar. Fatty acid metabolism in marine carnivores: implications for quantitative estimation of predator diets

Claude Nozères, M.Sc. (2005) Université Laval. Fatty acid signature classification patterns amongst beluga whales (Delphinapterus leucas), harbour seals (Phoca vitulina), and potential prey species in the St. Lawrence estuary, Canada

Shiway Wang, M.Sc. (2005) University of Alaska Fairbanks. Foraging patterns of northern fulmars in Alaska inferred from fatty acid signature analysis

Debbie Austin, Ph.D. (2004) Dalhousie University, NSERC scholar. Movement, diving and foraging success in a large, sexually dimorphic marine predator: insights from telemetry

Charlotte Beck, Ph.D. (2002) NSERC scholar, Dalhousie University. Sex differences in the foraging ecology of a size-dimorphic marine carnivore

Mike Goebel, Ph.D. (2002) University of California Santa Cruz. Foraging energetics of northern fur seals: the influence of diving behavior on growth and condition of offspring from birth to weaning

Heather Koopman, Ph.D. (2001) NSERC scholar, Duke University. The structure and function of the blubber of odontocetes

Tyler Schultz, M.Sc. (2001) NSERC scholar, Dalhousie University. The evolution of lactation strategies in pinnipeds: a phylogenetic analysis

Tammy Adams, Ph.D. (1999) Texas A&M University. Indices of maternal investment and dietary differences in adult female Alaskan Steller sea lions (Eumpetopias jubatus)

Jo-Ann Mellish, Ph.D. (1999) Dalhousie University, New Brunswick Women’s Doctoral Fellow.  Physiology of milk fat secretion and neonatal fat deposition during lactation in phocid seals

Sara Ellis, Ph.D. (1998) NSERC scholar, Dalhousie University. Maternal effects on offspring traits from birth through weaning in the harbour seal, Phoca vitulina

Heather Layton, M.Sc. (1998) NSERC scholar and recipient of the Governor General’s Award, Nova Scotia Agricultural College. Development of digestive capabilities and improvement of diet utilization by mink pre-and post-weaning with emphasis on gastric lipase

Monica Muelbert, Ph.D. (1998) Dalhousie University. The influence of size at weaning on the transition to nutritional independence in the harbour seal: is bigger better?

Penny Kirsch, M.Sc. (1997) Dalhousie University. Dietary effects on fatty acid signatures in marine species:  five captive animal studies

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David Coltman, Ph.D.  (1996) NSERC scholar, Dalhousie University. Phenotype and mating success of male harbour seals, Phoca vitulina, at Sable Island, Nova Scotia

Heather Koopman, M.Sc. (1994) NSERC scholar, University of Guelph. Topographical distribution and fatty acid composition of blubber of the harbour porpoise

Former Postdoctoral Fellows and Research Associates:

Shelley Lang (Ph.D. 2009, Dalhousie University) 2010-2017.

Ian Jonsen (Ph.D. 2002, University of Alberta) 2010-2014.

Sophie Bestley (Ph.D. 2008, University of Tasmania) 2010-2011.

Melissa McKinney (Ph.D. 2010, Carleton University) 2011 – 2013.

Heather Smith (Ph.D. 2009, University of Washington) 2009 – 2011.

Shawn Noren (Ph.D. 2001, University of California Santa Cruz) 2002 – 2003.

Heather Koopman (Ph.D. 2001, Duke University) 2002 – 2003.

Suzanne Budge (Ph.D. 1999, Memorial University, Newfoundland) 1999 – 2004.

pic25Honours Students:

Kim Whoriskey. 2013-2014. Post-breeding foraging strategies of grey seal females from coastal-breeding vs offshore-breeding populations

Priyanka Varkey. 2012-2013. Acoustic tracking of Atlantic cod

Chelsea De Carufel, 2008-2009. Proximate milk composition of northern fur seals near birth and late lactation: individual and population variation

Jessica Didduch, 2006-2007.  Diet segregation and overlap of invertebrates in the Northwest Atlantic using fatty acid signatures

Robert Lewis, 2003-2004.  Metabolic costs vs. milk production: how fasting grey seal females allocate their fatty acid stores

Bernita Giffin. 2003-2004. (co-supervised with Alan Pinder). The effect of fatty acids on growth and survival of clownfish larvae

Denise Saulnier, 1999-2000. Captive validation of fatty acid signature analysis in seabirds

Matthew Logan, 1997-1998. Diet specialization and competition among three species of freshwater fish

Lindsay Smith, 1996-1997. Milk fatty acid composition of black bears reflects diet and physiological status

Jodi Lassner, 1995-1996. Fatty acid composition of harp seal blubber as an indicator of diet

Kelley Hatch, 1995-1996. Gastric lipid digestion in neonates of the grey and harbour seal