Mammal community dynamics in altered ecosystems

Despite their important ecological roles and socioeconomic significance, many terrestrial mammal populations are threatened by a range of anthropogenic stressors, including hunting, habitat loss, and climate change. Other mammals successfully exploit anthropogenic environments due to changes in habitat suitability or predation pressure. Wildlife management has typically focused on single-species assessments and actions, yet a fuller accounting of wildlife “winners and losers” is needed for effective landscape-level conservation. Our research looks across species, scales, and stressors to seek general principles in wildlife population regulation and community structure within altered ecosystems. We use multispecies survey tools and coordinated distributed surveys to capitalize on large-scale management experiments, both planned and unplanned.

Current projects under this theme include:

  • Responses of larger-bodied mammals to the cumulative effects of anthropogenic land uses in northern Alberta and British Columbia.
  • The effects of woodland caribou recovery strategies on mammal community dynamics.
  • The impacts of human footprint on mammal functional diversity across local, regional and global scales.