Baah'd Plant Management & Reclamation goats (Photo by NCC)

Baah'd Plant Management & Reclamation goats (Photo by NCC)

Alberta Regional NatureTalks: Impact and Innovation

Thursday, March 4, 2021
4:30 p.m.–5:30 p.m. MST

You are invited to join four recipients of NCC’s Conservation Science Impact Funding as they share their innovative research and its conservation impacts. Discover how environmental DNA found in wetlands can help measure amphibian health; learn about the benefits of targeted grazing and goats on the landscape; hear how data captured on wildlife cameras helps us understand challenges in naturally occurring wildlife corridors and delve deeper into how grazing and grassland health interact to impact songbirds in the complex mosaic of Foothills Parkland.

Alberta’s Conservation Science Impact Fund was created to financially support and build conservation research partnerships and projects that help NCC manage and steward conservation lands, develop new methods for conserving ecologically important spaces, and deepen our understanding of the social and economic costs and benefits associated with land conservation..

Free registration is required to attend.

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About the speakers

Zachary MooreZachary Moore
Weston Family Science Fellow, MNRM Candidate

Zachary Moore is an emerging environmental professional in the fields of conservation and restoration. As a formally trained ecologist, Zack has spent most of his career working on population and community ecology research. He has examined the links between complex biological systems and human impacts including restoration, harvesting, and increases in temperature. After his bachelor’ degree, he studied ecosystem restoration through a post-graduate certificate. Zack took the field skills he learned in this program and applied them as a conservation intern with Nature Conservancy Canada (NCC) in southern Alberta, where he helped to monitor conservation projects in the Waterton Park Front. This position was extended for a year as additional work with NCC became available. Following his time working with NCC Alberta, Zack became one of the inaugural recipients of the Weston Family Conservation Science Fellowship, an award given to a new master’s or PhD student to study NCC-specific research objectives. He is now a candidate for a master’s degree in Natural Resources Management at the University of Manitoba under Dr. Nicola Koper and Dr. Ryan Norris (University of Guelph) studying how cattle grazing and landscape attributes impact grassland songbird habitat selection on NCC projects in the Waterton Natural Area. In his free time, Zack volunteers with the Society for Ecological Restoration in Western Canada (SERWC) and the Mountain Bluebird Trail Conservation Society (MBTCS).

Sue MichalskySue Michalsky
Rancher and Consultant

Sue Michalsky, M.Sc., R.P.F., is an alumni of the University of Alberta and has worked throughout North America as a rangeland ecologist and conservation practitioner. Her work experience centres on livestock and range management, conservation planning and agri-environmental policy. She has worked with numerous organizations including, for example, the Commission for Environmental Cooperation, Parks Canada, the Nature Conservancy of Canada and the Rocky Mountain Forest Range Association. She is also a beef and lamb producer with ranch holdings in southwestern Saskatchewan and southwestern Alberta. She spent two summers with her sheep implementing targeted grazing projects for Meewasin Valley Authority and has provided advice and conducted research on several other targeted grazing projects.

Jenet DooleyJenet Dooley
Wetland Ecologist
Alberta Biodiversity Monitoring Institute

Jenet has been the wetland ecologist at the Alberta Biodiversity Monitoring Institute (ABMI) since February 2019. Prior to working at ABMI, she worked as a consultant, applying the Alberta Wetland Policy and as a term lecturer at the University of Alberta, teaching Freshwater Ecology and Management. She earned her doctorate at the University of Florida in 2016 and has a bachelor's of environmental engineering from Miami University in Ohio. Her graduate studies focused on wetland ecology and the relationship between noise and land use intensity.

Emilie BrienEmilie Brien
Natural Area Manager, Castle-Crowsnest Watershed
Nature Conservancy of Canada, Alberta Region

Emilie started working for NCC in February 2019. She has a degree in Wildlife Management from the Cegep the St-Felicien (QC). Prior to working for NCC, Emilie worked as an environmental consultant for over 12 years, participating mostly in environmental impact assessments and construction monitoring for the natural resource extraction industry. Her experience provided her with a deep understanding of wildlife/human conflicts and ways to mitigate the impact of human development on the natural habitat. Emilie has been calling the Crowsnest Pass home since 2012. She loves the outdoors and in her spare time she enjoys hiking, snowboarding and rock climbing. She is also involved in her community as a director for the Crowsnest Conservation Society.

About the moderator

Craig HardingCraig Harding
Director, Conservation and Science Planning
Nature Conservancy of Canada, Alberta Region

Craig Harding completed his BSc in ecology with a minor in geography at the University of Western Ontario. While completing his undergraduate degree, he was involved in research focused on insects, bats, yeast, small mammals and plant ecology. These experiences led him to Belize, the Rocky Mountains, Sonoran Desert and more locally in southwestern Ontario. He moved to South Africa in 2012 and spent the next three years engaged in research and conservation initiatives in a very different part of the world. There he worked with fruit bats and birds, learning about the interactions between climate patterns and animal behaviour. After a year in the Kalahari Desert, he moved to Cape Town to study African penguins and completed an MSc in conservation biology with BirdLife South Africa. During this time he studied movement patterns of African penguins in relation to food availability and the disturbances they face from fishing pressures. Following his time in South Africa, Craig returned to Canada and worked for the Alberta Biodiversity Monitoring Institute, collecting habitat and species data between Edmonton and Wood Buffalo National Park. After a summer re-acclimatizing to the Canadian weather, he started working for the Nature Conservancy of Canada and has been with the organization for the past four years.

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