Past members of the ACS Lab

Ishana Shukla

MSc 2023

Ishana focused on how human disturbance can alter behavior and community interactions in wildlife and fisheries systems. Her research examined the potential impacts of human exploitation on keystone species, identifying which species characteristics or processes might make a species more vulnerable. Part of this included confronting the Hyperkeystone Species hypothesis with data.

Current Position: PhD Student at UC Davis 

Lauren Eckert

Lauren Eckert

PhD 2023

Lauren spent her time at the ACS lab researching the intersections of Indigenous and western sciences, Canadian environmental policy and the role human values play in our relationships with wildlife and, ultimately, conservation conflicts and collaborative ways to transform them.

Current Position: Postdoctoral Fellow at UBC 


Melanie Clapham

Melanie Clapam

Postdoctoral Fellow 2023

Melanie’s academic work focused on developing our understanding of bear behavior, particularly through research into olfactory communication. She was especially interested in the application of conservation technology to advance field and analytical techniques for large carnivores.

Current Position: Conservation Biologist with Nanwakolas member-Nations. 

Chenoah Shine

Chenoah Shine

MSc 2023

Chenoa’s MSc included research on cetacean vulnerability and behavioral responses to vessel traffic as part of the Ships Whales and Acoustics in Gitga’at Territory (SWAG) project.

Current Position: Consultant with Rewilding Water & Earth Inc. 

Monica Short

MSc 2022

Monica’s Master’s work was in collaboration with the Kitasoo/Xai’xais Nation to assess the potential influences of ecotourism on grizzly bear behavior.

Current Position: Research Associate with the Kitasoo/Xai’xais Stewardship Authority

Kyle Artelle

Post-doctoral Fellow & Adjunct Assistant Professor

Kyle’s research focuses on conservation in support of people and places, including dimensions of human-wildlife coexistence, ecology, wildlife management and conservation, and biodiversity-supporting food production systems. 

Current Position: Assistant Professor at State University of New York 

Andrew Bateman

Post-doctoral Fellow & Adjunct Assistant Professor

Andrew is a quantitative population ecologist who works on a variety of systems. He was mainly focused on the demography of social carnivores. As a member of the ACS lab, he collaborated with Fisheries and Oceans Canada to explore social impacts on population dynamics in northern resident killer whales.


Current Position: Pacific Salmon Foundation Scientist

Lauren Henson, PhD student in the Raincoast Applied Conservation Science lab standing in the forest with students near the hair snag. She is holding forceps and an envelope to demonstrate hair collection methods to the students surrounding her.

Lauren Henson

PhD 2021

Lauren used her background in molecular biology to answer questions about large-scale carnivore conservation along the interior to coastal ecotone of British Columbia. Lauren’s work is in partnership with Kitasoo, Xai’Xais and Gitga’at nations, with fieldwork conducted in their territories.

Current Position: Collaborative Management and Tribal Support Specialist with the Bears Ears Inter-Tribal Coalition

Erin Foster

Erin Foster

PhD 2021

Erin’s PhD work focused on sea otter foraging behaviour and range expansion on BC’s Central Coast, in partnership with the Hakai Institute. Working with researchers from Hakai Changing Seascapes and 100 Islands Programs, Erin investigated the effects of sea otter predation on nearshore ecosystems, and the potential of these effects to influence terrestrial communities via marine subsidies.

Current Position: Post-Doctoral Fellow with the Department of Fisheries and Oceans Canada. 

Molly Fraser

MSc 2020

Molly has a lifelong dedication to improving our understanding of anthropogenic threats to marine ecosystems and species, having grown up on Northern Vancouver Island and spending much of her life on the ocean. She conducted her MSc research on assessing compliance levels of small vessels to marine mammal regulations in the Salish Sea.

Current Position: Marine Shipping and Response Coordinator at the Central Coast Indigenous Resource Alliance (CCIRA)

Heather Bryan

Heather Bryan

Post-doctoral Fellow 2020

Heather collaborated with partners from academia and the provincial government to investigate the environmental conditions that influence grizzly bear size and growth across the province of British Columbia. As part of the Central Coast Bear Working Group’s long-term bear research program, Heather worked with Indigenous and academic partners to apply new methods of monitoring bear population health using environmental DNA.

Current Position: Assistant Professor at the University of Northern British Columbia

Bryant DeRoy

MSc 2019

Bryant worked closely with the Kitasoo/Xai’xais Stewardship Authority based in Klemtu, British Columbia to implement ecosystem-based management in Kitasoo/Xai’xais Territory. Bryant is specifically interested in exploring the role of cultural values in current and future forest management scenarios.

Current Position: Sea Gardens Science Officer at Gulf Islands National Park Reserve

Head shot of Megan Adams. She is smiling and wearing a wool toque in front of an gray sky and ocean background.

Megan Adams

PhD 2019

Megan’s PhD combined her interests in the intersection of human governance systems and ecological systems, to pursue research that is applied and community driven. Working with the Wuikinuxv Nation, she focused on coupled bear-salmon-human systems, specifically habitat and resource connectivity for coastal grizzly bears.

Current Position: Salmon Programs Coordinator for the Central Coast Indigenous Resource Alliance (CCIRA)

Christina Service

PhD 2019

Christina’s research used non-invasive methodologies to monitor grizzly and black bear diet and movement in Kitasoo/Xai’xais territory. Her work addressed locally meaningful research questions, such as how bears impact each others salmon consumption within the region. 

Current Position: Wildlife Biologist & Science Coordinator with the Kitasoo/Xai’xais Integrated Resource Authority (KXIRA)

Martin Leclerc

Post-doctoral Fellow 2019

During his postdoc in ACS lab, Martin explored the impacts of human harvest by looking at how humans can shape entire animal communities, often by only harvesting a few species. Martin’s research helps bring new knowledge to theoretical ecological and evolutionary questions and better assess human impacts on fitness and the structure of animal communities. 

Current Position: Research Professor at Université du Québec à Chicoutimi. 

Mathieu Bourbonnais

PhD 2018

Mathieu was a PhD student with the Spatial Pattern Analysis & Research (SPAR) Lab and Applied Conservation Science Lab. His research examined how spatial patterns of grizzly bear movement, quantified using high resolution GPS telemetry data, are influenced by landscape disturbance, including roads, forest harvest, and forest fires, as well as resource and food availability.

Current Position: Assistant Professor at the University of British Columbia – Okanagan

Katie Davidson

MSc 2018

Katie’s research focused on the marine environment, particularly in understanding its importance for terrestrial ecosystems. Working with other members of the Hakai 100 Islands Team, she investigated how marine nutrient subsidies, in the form of beach wrack accumulation, influenced mammalian diversity, feeding behaviour, and population dynamics across island networks.

Current position: Stock Assessment Biologist with Fisheries and Oceans Canada

Caroline Fox

Post-doctoral Fellow 2018

Working closely with Dr. Paul Paquet, Caroline’s research related to the quantification of at-sea marine bird species distributions and abundances, species-habitat relationships, predictive marine bird modelling and the development of spatial risk assessments for marine birds and industrial activity.

Current position: Wildlife Biologist with the Canadian Wildlife Service

Aerin Jacob

Post-doctoral Fellow 2017

Aerin worked closely with managers and communities to conduct applied research directly relevant to conservation and landscape planning. Her postdoctoral research focused on the ecological consequences of human predation on wildlife.

Current Position: Director of Science and Research and Weston Family Senior Scientist at Nature Conservancy Canada. Aerin is also an Adjunct Professor at the University of Northern British Columbia. 

Eva Stredulinsky

MSc 2017

As an MSc student with the ACS lab, Eva’s research combined marine mammal population ecology and sociobiology, to explore the social structure of Northern Resident Killer Whales. Specifically, she examined the phenomenon of matriline splitting (the fragmenting of natal family groups), how it relates to group fitness, demographics, resource abundance, and competition for Chinook Salmon, and the potential implications on a population and evolutionary level.

Current position: Marine Mammal Biologist with Fisheries and Oceans Canada

Alena Ebling-Schuld

Honours 2016

Alena’s research was mainly qualitative and involved assessing the motivations of both meat and trophy hunters in North America by examining online hunting discussion forums and related websites. Broadly, this work related to her interests in the connections between ecosystems and their components, including humans.

Current Position: Coordinator with Coastal First Nations’ Central Coast Bear Working Group and Media Coordinator for Spirit Bear Research Foundation  

Travis Muir

Honours 2015

Travis’ work involved analyzing several years’ worth of remote camera and video data as an extension of Rosie Child’s work on patterns of sympatric and allopatric black and grizzly bears on the BC central coast. Broadly, this work is related to his interests in wildlife, ecology, and species interactions.

Current position: Conservation and Engagement Coordinator with the Nature Conservancy Canada

Jonaki Bhattacharyya

Post-doctoral Fellow 2015

Jonaki’s research focused on relationships among animals, humans, and plants on the Central Coast of British Columbia, with particular attention to coastal estuarine root gardens. Jonaki’s doctoral research was an extensive study of wild (free-roaming) horses in Chilcotin, BC. Working with Xeni Gwet’in First Nation colleagues and local advisors, she developed an in-depth analysis of the ecological and cultural relationships between wild horses, people, and the land. Her research in both regions examines how different cultural perceptions and ways of knowing contribute to management decisions.

Current position: Senior Researcher with Firelight Group