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Fiona Schmiegelow

Professor and Director, Northern ENCS Program (Wildlife and landscape ecology, conservation science)

Agricultural Life and Environmental Sciences

Renewable Resources

About Me

Job/Research Area: Professor, Northern Environmental and Conservation Science.

I began as a professor at the University of Alberta in 1997, and since 2009, have had the great privilege of developing and directing our partnered Bachelors of Science in Environmental and Conservation Science, Northern Systems Major, with Yukon College (soon to become Yukon University – May 2020). My primary location is Whitehorse, Yukon, where this program is delivered. I have recently accepted a 3-year appointment as Director of UAlberta North, established in 2015 to bring institutional priority and fresh energy to the University’s work across the boreal, Arctic and circumpolar regions ( 


• Faculty of Agricultural, Life & Environmental Sciences - Teacher of the Year (2015, 2009, 2001)

• Royal Canadian Geographic Society: Inducted as a Fellow of the Society (2014)

• Ed and Peggy Tyrchniewicz Award for Innovation in Teaching (2013)

• Boreal Trailblazers Award: for leadership in boreal conservation through teaching, research and outreach (2009)

• Alberta Centennial Medal: for contributions to wildlife conservation and land management in Alberta (2005)


Major Responsibilities/Research Interests: My general interests are in the areas of wildlife and landscape ecology and conservation, with a focus on the effects of land-use policies and practices on northern ecosystems. An overarching objective is to advance novel approaches to sustaining adaptive, socio-ecological systems in northern regions, in the context of changing climates and governance structures. To this end, I am involved in many partnerships, and committed to helping bridge science-policy interfaces, particularly as they pertain to land-use and biodiversity conservation.  


Lamothe, K.A., R. Dong, O. Senar, S. Teichert, I.F. Creed, D.P. Kreutzweiser, F.K.A. SCHMIEGELOW, and L. Venier. 2019. Demand for non-provisioning ecosystem services as a driver of change in the boreal zone, Canada. Environmental Reviews. 

Finnegan, L, Pigeon, KE, Cranston, J, Hebblewhite, M, Musiani, M, Neufeld, L, SCHMIEGELOW, F, Duval, J, Stenhouse, GB. 2018. Natural regeneration on seismic lines influences movement behaviour of wolves and grizzly bears. Plos One , 13, doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0195480. 

Jung, TS, Czetwertynski, SM, SCHMIEGELOW, FKA. 2018. Boreal forest titans do not clash: low overlap in winter habitat selection by moose (Alces americanus) and reintroduced bison (Bison bison). European Journal Of Wildlife Research , 64, doi:10.1007/s10344-018-1184-z. 

Leston, L, Bayne, E, SCHMIEGELOW, F. 2018. Long-term changes in boreal forest occupancy within regenerating harvest units. Forest Ecology and Management, 421: 40-53. 

Odsen, S.G, J. H. Acorn, F.K.A. SCHMIEGELOW and J. R. Spence. 2018. Boreal songbird communities and variable retention management : a fifteen-year perspective on conservation in forestry. Forest Ecology & Management. 

Sólymos, P., Matsuoka, S.M., Cumming, S.G., Stralberg, D., Fontaine, P., SCHMIEGELOW, F.K.A., Song, S.J., Bayne, E.M. 2018. Evaluating time-removal models for estimating availability of boreal birds during point count surveys: Sample size requirements and model complexity. Condor. 

Stralberg, D., A. Camfield, M. Carlson, C. Lauzon, A. Westwood, N.K.S. Barker, S.J. Song, and F.K.A. SCHMIEGELOW. 2018. Strategies for identifying priority areas for passerine conservation in Canada's boreal forest. Avian Conservation and Ecology. 

Kukka, P.M., Jung, T.S, Robitaille, J-F, and F. K. A. SCHMIEGELOW. 2017. Temporal variation in the population characteristics of harvested wolverine (Gulo gulo) in northwestern Canada. Wildlife Research 44(6):497-503. 

Ball, J. R., P. Sólymos, F. K. A. SCHMIEGELOW, S. Hache, J. Schieck and E. Bayne. 2016. Regional habitat needs of a nationally listed species, Canada Warbler (Cardellina canadensis), in Alberta, Canada. Avian Conservation and Ecology 11 (2):10. [online] URL: 

Bayne, E., Leston, L., Mahon, L.C., Sólymos, P., Machtans, C., Lankau, H., Ball, J.R., Van Wilgenburg, S.L., Cumming, S.G., Fontaine, T., SCHMIEGELOW, F.K.A., and S. J. Song. 2016. Boreal bird abundance estimates within different energy sector disturbances vary with point count radius. The Condor 118:376-390. 

Mayer, A.L., Buma, B., Davis, A., Gagné, S.A., Loudermilk, E.L., Scheller, R.M., SCHMIEGELOW, F.K.A. , Wiersma, Y.F. and Franklin, J. 2016. How landscape ecology informs global land-change science and policy. BioScience 66:458-469. 

Stralberg, D., Matsuoka, S. M., Handel, C. M., SCHMIEGELOW, F. K. A., Hamann, A. and Bayne, E. M. 2016. Biogeography of boreal passerine range dynamics in western North America: past, present, and future. Ecography 39:1-17. 

Barker, N.K.S., P.C. Fontaine, S.G. Cumming, D. Stralberg, A. Westwood, E.M. Bayne, P. Sólymos, F.K.A. SCHMIEGELOW, S. Song and D. Rugg. 2015. Ecological monitoring through harmonizing existing data: lessons from the Boreal Avian Modelling Project. Wildlife Society Bulletin DOI: 10.1002/wsb.567 

Mahon, C.L., G. Holloway, P. Sólymos, S. Cumming, E.M. Bayne, F.K.A. SCHMIEGELOW, and S. J. Song. 2016. Community structure and niche characteristics of upland and lowland western boreal birds at multiple spatial scales. Forest Ecology & Management 361:99-116. 

Stralberg, D., Bayne, E.M., Cumming, S.G., Sólymos, P., Song, S.J. & SCHMIEGELOW, F.K.A. 2015. Conservation of future boreal forest bird communities considering lags in vegetation response to climate change: a modified refugia approach. Diversity and Distributions. DOI: 10.1111/ddi.12356 

Wiersma YF, Duinker PN, Haider W, Hvenegaard GT, SCHMIEGELOW FKA. 2015. Relationships between Protected Areas and Sustainable Forest Management: where are we heading? Conservation and Society 13(1): 1-12. 

Cumming S.G., C.R. Drever, M. Houle, J. Cosco, P. Racine, E. Bayne and F.K.A. SCHMIEGELOW. 2014. A gap analysis of tree species representation in the protected areas of the Canadian boreal forest: applying a new assemblage of digital Forest Resource Inventory data. Canadian Journal of Forest Research. 

Stralberg, D., S.M. Matsuoka, A. Hamann, E. M. Bayne, P. Sólymos, F. K. A. SCHMIEGELOW, X. Wang, S. G. Cumming, and S. J. Song. 2014. Projecting boreal bird responses to climate change: the signal exceeds the noise. Ecological Applications. DOI: 10.1890/13-2289.1. 

SCHMIEGELOW, F.K.A., S.G. Cumming, K.A. Lisgo, S.J. Leroux, and M.A. Krawchuk. 2014. Catalyzing Large Landscape Conservation in Canada’s Boreal Systems: The BEACONs Project Experience. Pages 97-122 in James N. Levitt, editor, Conservation Catalysts. Lincoln Institute of Land Policy, Harvard Press. 350 pp. 

Cumming, S. G., D. Stralberg, K. Lefevre, E. Bayne, S. Fang, P. Fontaine, D. Mazerolle, F. K. A. SCHMIEGELOW, P. Sólymos, and S. Song. 2013. Climate and vegetation hierarchically structure patterns of songbird distribution in the Canadian boreal region. Ecography. doi: 10.1111/j.1600-0587.2013.00299.x. 

Mahon, C.L., E.M. Bayne, P. Sólymos, S.M. Matsuoka, M. Carlson , E.Dzus, F.K.A. SCHMIEGELOW, and S. J. Song. 2013. Does expected future landscape condition support proposed population objectives for boreal birds? Forest Ecology and Management 312: 28–39. 

Sólymos, P., S. M. Matsuoka, E. M. Bayne, S. R. Lele. P. Fontaine, S.G. Cumming, D. Stralberg, F. SCHMIEGELOW, and S. Song. 2013. Calibrating indices of avian density from non-standardized survey data: making the most of a messy situation. Methods in Ecology and Evolution 4(11):1047–1058. 

DeCesare, N. J., M. Hebblewhite, F. SCHMIEGELOW, D. Hervieux, G. J. McDermid, L. Neufeld, M. Bradley, J. Whittington, K. G. Smith, L. E. Morgantini, M. Wheatley, and M. Musiani. 2012. Transcending scale dependence in identifying habitat with resource selection functions. Ecological Appls 22: 1068-1083. 

Krawchuk, M.A., K.A. Lisgo, S. Leroux, P. Vernier, S. G. Cumming, F.K.A. SCHMIEGELOW. 2012. Conservation and climate change in Canada’s boreal regions. Pages 79-93 in C.C. Chester, J.A. Hilty and M.S. Cross (eds), Conservation and climate disruption: landscape science and practice in a changing climate. Island Press. 

Nelson, B., Hebblewhite, M., Ezenwa, V., Shury, T., Merrill, E. H., Paquet, P. C., SCHMIEGELOW, F., Seip, D., Skinner, G. & Webb, N. 2012. Seroprevalence of canine parvovirus and distemper in wolves in the Canadian Rocky Mountains. Journal of Wildlife Diseases 48: 68-78. 

Matsuoka, S. M., E. M. Bayne, P. Sólymos, P. Fontaine, S. G. Cumming, F. K. A. SCHMIEGELOW, and S. J. Song. 2012. Using binomial distance-sampling models to estimate the effective detection radius of point-count surveys across boreal Canada. The Auk 129:268-282. 

Barnett, A.G., Koper, N., Dobson, A. J., SCHMIEGELOW, F. K. A., and Manseau, M. 2010. Selecting the correct variance–covariance structure for longitudinal data in ecology: a comparison of the Akaike, quasi-information and deviance information criteria. Methods in Ecology and Evolution 1:15-24. 

Cumming, S. G., Lefevre, K., Bayne, E., Fontaine, T., SCHMIEGELOW, F.K.A. and S. J. Song. 2010. Toward conservation of Canada`s boreal forest avifauna: design and application of ecological models at continental extents. Avian Conservation and Ecology (in press). 

Duinker, P.N. Y.F. Wiersma, W. Haider, G.T. Hvenegaard, and F.K.A. SCHMIEGELOW. 2010. Protected areas and sustainable forest management: what are we talking about? Forestry Chronicle 86(2):173-177. 

Hauer, G., Cumming, S.G., SCHMIEGELOW, F.K.A, Adamowicz, A., Weber, M. and R. Jagodzinski. 2010. Tradeoffs between forestry resource and conservation values under alternate forest policy regimes: A spatial analysis of the western Canadian boreal plains. Ecological Modelling 221:2590-2603. 

Leroux, S.J., Krawchuk, M.A., SCHMIEGELOW, F.K.A., Cumming, S.G., Lisgo, K., Anderson, L.G. and M. Petkova. 2010. Global protected areas and IUCN designations: does the category match the condition? Biological Conservation 143:609-616.


RenR 365, Ecology and Conservation of Northern Landscapes

RenR 473, Topics in Northern Resource Management

RenR 491, Northern Land-use Planning

RenR 465, Winter Field School: Northern Exposures

RenR 465, Summer Field School: A River Runs Through It