Our research in the area of Ecology and Evolution aims to address several important questions and uses a host of approaches and techniques to achieve this.  Most labs use multidisciplinary approaches spanning several areas such as molecular techniques, quantitative methods, GIS, laboratory experimentation on organism development and physiology, population dynamics, genetic analyses as well as satellite imagery.

Faculty & Areas of Interest

Ben Bolker – interactions among natural enemies and their victims: viruses, bacteria, and macroparasites

Patricia Chow-Fraser – human impacts on the ecological health of wetland and tributaries of Great Lakes

Susan Dudley – carbon acquisition in plants: kin recognition in plants; phenotypic plasticity and stress

Jonathan Dushoff – quantitative examination of the evolution and spread of infectious diseases

Ian Dworkin – genetic, genomic and developmental approaches to the study of phenotypic evolution

Ben Evans – evolutions of vertebrates from biogeographical and molecular perspectives

Brian Golding – molecular phylogenetics, population genetics, and bioinformatics

Chad Harvey – impact of invading species on resident foodwebs and ecosystems

Jurek Kolasa – biodiversity, stability, and variability of communities and ecosystems

James Quinn – effect of relatedness on behavioural ecology of colonial and cooperative-breeding birds

David Rollo – ecological design of organisms:  combining behaviour, morphology and physiology

Rama Singh – evolutionary genomics of speciation in Drosophila; sex- and reproduction related genes

Graham Scott – evolutionary physiology; physiological adaptation to challenging environments

Jianping (JP) Xu – microbial mutations in natural environments and human populations

Relevant Graduate Courses

BIOL 6DD3 / Molecular Evolution

BIOL 708 / Quantitative Methods in Ecology and Evolution

BIOL 709 / Ecological Statistics

BIOL 715 / Topics in Evolutionary Genetics

BIOL 720 / Bioinformatics

BIOL 721 / Topics in Molecular Evolution

BIOL 724 / Molecular Ecology

For more information on these courses, please click here

Research Highlights

· Recently, the Evans lab has uncovered variation in genetic mechanisms for sex determination in frogs, and explored how different social systems affect genome evolution in primates.

· The Dudley lab has discovered that plants recognize their kin and respond to them modifying their growth patterns (as featured on CBC)

· The Rollo lab has identified a complex mixture of nutrients that appears capable of dramatically extending mammalian life spans

· Research in the Scott lab has uncovered connections between temperature and adaptability, which have unexpected implications for climate change effects (PNAS, 2012)

· The Quinn lab has made remarkable discoveries, connecting air pollution with heritable genetic change (as published in Science)

· Using mathematical modelling, the Bolker and Dushoff groups are revealing important insights into the spread of infectious disease