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Woolnough, Daelyn

Research Associate Professor


More about Daelyn Woolnough

  • B.Sc. (Env), University of Guelph, 1999
  • Adv. Diploma, Marine Geomatics, College of Geographic Sciences, 2000
  • M.Sc., (Zoology), University of Guelph, 2002
  • Ph.D., (Ecology, Evolution, & Organismal Biology), Iowa State University, 2006
  • Postdoc., Trent University, 2006-2008
  • Spatial Ecology and Conservation Ecology

Current research projects

My interests revolve around understanding the biological processes and mechanisms underlying spatial patterns. Spatial patterns affect the distribution and diversity of species. Variation in spatial patterns affects the persistence of populations. I focus on the ecological movement through metapopulation theory which can help estimate the spatial ecology of species, populations, and communities. Metapopulation theory can be applied to host-parasite communities as well as species-resource spatial dynamics. I have used spatial ecology concepts to consider spatial distribution of mussels, fish, benthic invertebrates as well as terrestrial populations of dogwoods and wild radishes. These complex landscapes and the spatial ecology of species create dynamics that structure populations and communities. My current research emphasizes how populations and communities are connected by physical structure or functional connections (e.g., resources or host movement) in space and time and whether the variability of empirical data can be used to predict survival and distribution. Recent research focuses on effects of urbanization on aquatic water bodies and fragmentation of habitats by dams and culverts.

Ongoing (funded) projects in my lab include:

  • Influence of contaminants of emerging concern on native mussels and host fish
  • Effects of dams and dam removals on mollusks in Great Lakes rivers
  • Landscape ecology of native communities of mollusks in Michigan watersheds
  • Deterministic factors of distribution of all molluscan fauna in the Grand River watershed
  • Effects of dewatering of lakes due to dam restoration and replacement
  • Analysis of habitat fragmentation due to culverts
  • Assessing aquatic habitats in an urban landscape
  • Host fish identification and propagation of at-risk mussels in the Great Lakes

These projects are funded by a variety of sources including Great Lakes Restoration Initiative, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, and Michigan Department of Natural Resources.

Courses Taught

  • Population Ecology
  • Landscape Ecology
  • Spatial Statistics
  • Aquatic Ecology
  • Geographic Information Systems