String of successful defenses

We’ve had a series of very successful defenses in the past few months. Chloe, Rory and Camille (pictured above) all completed their MSc degrees in fine fashion. Volunteering their time to act as external examiners were Dr. Jackie Litzgus (Laurentian U.), Dr. Cole Burton (UBC) and Dr. Lisa Shipley Washington State U.), respectively – a big thanks to them. Congratulations to all three of our lab mates who have now moved on to new things.

Number 27.

Number 27

In September we conducted our 27th consecutive year of small mammal live-trapping at our three long-term study blocks. This work largely is powered by the senior undergraduate students in the Natural Resource Science program. This year, however, Kara from our lab played a leader role in coordination, and used the opportunity to put out radio-collars as part of her research on deer mice and voles. Afterwards there was a combination pancake breakfast – trap bleaching session at Karl’s house.
Lot’sa fun.

A couple big accomplishments in the lab.

Two big accomplishments in the lab to report: On September 27, 2023, Chloe defended her thesis on “Western Rattlesnake Migration and Habitat Use in British Columbia, Canada”. One of her chapters already appears in print (see Can. J. Zool. Also on the rattlesnake front, Veronica took top prize for student presentations (15-minute category) at the 2023 Canadian Herpetological Society annual meeting in Ottawa. Her talk was entitled “Intra- and interspecific hibernation site selection of three sympatric snake species”. Congrats to both of them for helping keep rattlesnakes at the forefront ūüôā

World Snake Day 2023 a successsssssssssssss…..






The World Snake Day celebration at our Osoyoos rattlesnake study site (in partnership with the Osoyoos Indian Band) was a great success, thanks to the work of Lindsay and the other snakers on the team (Calen, Erin, and Caroline).  Good turnout and a lot of people learnt a lot about snakes.

Way behind on posting!

Wow, I fell way behind on updating the postings to this site.¬† So here’s a few highlights:

Back in March Lily won Best Poster at the Master of Science Showcase at TRU.  Good going. That just might be two years in a row that our lab has won the competition (Camille won the previous year!).   Lily also won a prestigious BC Graduate Scholarship!

The first paper from Chloe’s thesis has been published!¬† See¬†Western Rattlesnake spring migration in British Columbia: a comparative study of juveniles and adults.¬†¬†Canadian Journal of Zoology 2023:¬†

At the end of March, no less than 7 members of our lab (Jade, Chloe, Camille, Rory, Alexis, Julien and Kyla) made it to the combined meeting in Victoria of the BC Chapter and Canadian Chapter of the Wildlife Society.  Marcus (a lab alumni) also appeared! Everyone presented!  The 2024 meeting of the BC Chapter will be right here in Kamloops!

Karl and Veronica appeared in an episode of CBC’s Planet Wonder¬†with host Joanna Wagstaff.¬† The episode was entitled “Do we need to be cold-blooded for our warm future” and it covered, among a number of things, how animals may adapt (or be adapted) to deal with a changing climate.¬† You can watch the 25-minute show by clicking right here.

In May, Karl ticked off #1 on his bucket list by taking a trip to Indonesia to see the magnificent Komodo Dragons.

That’s all for now.¬† I’ll try to stay on top of this better from now on. Pip pip, tally ho.







December Social

Our lab’s December Holiday Social was well attended in 2022:¬† A couple recent alumni dropped in, and even the Honours Students managed to find time amongst their end-of-semester exams!¬† A superb¬†potluck dinner was created.

Lily presents in Montréal

In mid-August, Lily presented a poster on her thesis work at¬† the 2022 Annual Meeting of the Ecological Society of America.¬† She entitled it¬† “How does translocation affect the movement and survival of a population of gophersnakes at their northern range limit?”.