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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: Northern Environmental and Conservation Science.


  • Faculty of Agricultural, Life & Environmental Sciences - Teacher of the Year (2015, 2001, 2009)
  • Royal Canadian Geographic Society: Inducted as a Fellow of the Society (2014)
  • Ed and Peggy Tyrchniewicz Award for Innovation in Teaching (2013)
  • 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 community and landscape ecology, and applied conservation biology. My research focuses on the broad-scale effects of land-use policies and practices on wildlife and ecosystem integrity in northern systems. I use both field-based and modeling approaches, and the implementation of landscape experiments, to better understand the interactions between human activities and natural system dynamics, in order to identify ecologically sustainable land management strategies. I am involved in collaborations with researchers from around the world, some of which are stimulating a fundamental re-thinking of several paradigms in conservation biology and landscape ecology. From 1998-2005, I led the interdisciplinary Boreal Ecology and Economics Synthesis Team, and remain a member of this dynamic group. I initiated and lead the Canadian BEACONs Project, a large-scale scientific analysis of conservation needs and strategies for Canada’s boreal and taiga regions. A sub-project of this work, the National Boreal Bird-Habitat Modeling Project, is establishing research networks, assembling data and building habitat-based models of bird distribution and abundance across northern regions of Canada, and I have recently initiated a parallel project for woodland caribou. I continue long-term research on the Calling Lake Fragmentation Project, a large-scale experimental evaluation of the implications of forest loss and fragmentation for boreal bird communities.