Our work focuses on research and discovery at the interface of macroecology, conservation, and global change. It starts with discovery but is about more than that - we are looking for ways to use discovery to improve conservation prospects for biological diversity during the current period of rapid human-induced climate change and habitat loss and improve predictions of vector borne disease risk for people. Our research addresses ecological and conservation processes across landscapes, regions, and continents. We are especially active in Canada and Tanzania.
DR. JEREMY T. KERR
Soroye, P., N. Ahmed, and J. T. Kerr. 2018. Opportunistic citizen science data provides substantial novel information when used in complement with professional survey data. Global Change Biology.
Zuloaga, J., D. J. Currie, and J. T. Kerr. 2018. The origins and maintenance of global species endemism. Global Ecology and Biogeography.
Kerr, J. T. 2017. A cocktail of poisons. Science 356: 1332-1333. DOI: 10.1126/science.aan6713.
Robillard*, C. and J. T. Kerr. 2017. Assessing the shelf life of cost-efficient conservation plans for species at risk across gradients of agricultural land-use. Conservation Biology 31: 837-847. DOI: 10.1111/cobi.12886
Kerr J. T., Pindar A, Galpern P, Packer L, Roberts SM, Rasmont P, Schweiger O, Colla SR, Richardson LL, Wagner DL, Gall LF, Sikes DS, Pantoja A. 2015. Climate change impacts on bumblebees converge across continents. Science 349: 177-180.
Bio 2129 - Introduction to Ecology
Bio 4150 - Spatial Ecology.
I serve as an editor for Global Ecology and Biogeography, Ecography, Evolutionary Ecology Research, and as a senior editor at FACETS. I served on the Evaluation Group 1503 for Ecology and Evolution and as a member of the advisory group to improve NSERC’s Common CV.
I did my undergrad at U of O in Biology and my honours project with a pioneer of macroecology, David Currie. I did my PhD at York University with an incredible biologist, Laurence Packer, from whom I learned totally different things, including that Mahler isn’t my thing and that butterflies are beautiful and scientifically fascinating. I went on to do a postdoc in Oxford with Bob May and Dick Southwood. I can't do either of these legendary scientists justice here. I ended up back in Ottawa as a research scientist in remote sensing with another legend, Josef Cihlar, and then full circle to Biology at University of Ottawa.
In all things, I try to give back more than I use up. I am strongly engaged in public science and at the science-policy interface. Activities I’ve helped lead include improving endangered species legislation in Canada and Ontario, boreal conservation, malaria challenges in East Africa and, recently, as a voice opposing the increasingly Orwellian perversion of facts and evidence at the federal level in Canada. I have contributed to the development of Canada’s Chief Science Advisor position in a number of ways, serve as an executive of NSERC Council as Chair of Discovery Research, and have longstanding commitments to equity, diversity, and inclusion in STEM.
I hold the University Research Chair in Macroecology and Conservation and just completed my term as President of the Canadian Society for Ecology and Evolution. I am an alumnus of the Global Young Academy and have had research successes that are important to me, including Young Researcher of the Year, Early Researcher Award from Ontario, and most recently the Excellence in Media Relations prize for Research. I am very active in the Partnership Group for Science and Engineering, a project of the Royal Society of Canada.
KERR LAB MEMBERS
Tiffany Bretzlaff, PhD candidate
I am a nature lover: from chasing frogs and insects as a child to educational nature excursions while travelling with family. I’ve always enjoyed learning about animals, both in the form of adaptations as well as how they fit into their ecosystem. Evidently, I ventured down the path of physiology during my undergraduate research at UOttawa, studying the critical thermal maximum of the Common Eastern Bumblebee (Bombus impatiens) and how high temperatures impact this species internally. As a graduate student, I am continuing the work I started under the helpful guidance of Dr. Charles Darveau and now also have the ecological insight of Dr. Kerr as my co-supervisor to bridge my research in physiology with ecology. By studying the physiological effects of high temperature using thermolimit respirometry on the different castes within colonies of B. impatiens, I hope to provide insight into how climate change may impact this species. Bees are an important part of our ecosystem and, with their populations in decline, I hope that my research will provide a step in the right direction in understanding the threats faced by these important insects.
Bé Leduc, MSc candidate
Before starting my Master’s in the Kerr lab, I had the chance to work with Dr. Anders Knudby from the Department of Geography using drones, aircrafts, and satellite imagery to develop a method of monitoring the distribution of wild leek in Gatineau Park. I discovered that remote sensing has incredible conservation potential, especially at the macro-ecological scale, as it delivers continuous and global observations of the Earth.
I decided to combine my passion for protecting our precious pollinators with remote sensing techniques. My research focuses on demonstrating the contribution of remote sensing in capturing processes underlying patterns of bumblebee species occurrence in North America and Europe. I’m pursuing this project to gain a better understanding of the changes that are occurring at the macro-ecological scale on species distribution. If conclusive, this will be valuable for the long-term monitoring and protection of biodiversity, especially in areas where data can be hard to obtain.
Catherine Sirois-Delisle, PhD candidate
My fascination for nature, its organisms, and its intricate ecological interactions, led me to obtain my Bachelor’s degree of Biology at the University of Montreal. During this time, I completed two entomology research internships. I worked on the geolocation of Odonata specimens from the Ouellet-Robert entomological collection, and on the molecular analysis of a mitochondrial gene of Phylloxera species of the collection. Afterwards, I completed a plant ecology internship involving fieldwork to analyze the vegetation dynamics of plants indigenous to Québec, at the Station de Biologie des Laurentides.
Currently, I am working on my Master’s of Environmental Sustainability thesis in Jeremy Kerr’s macroecology lab, on bumblebee conservation. Many bumblebee species are unable to range-shift under rapid climate change, requiring urgent attention. For this reason, we are exploring managed relocation as a conservation option using species distribution models. The main objective is to model climatically suitable areas under various climate change scenarios, and identifying potential locations for the managed relocation of bumblebees.
Peter Soroye, PhD candidate
I started a MSc in Biology, specializing in Environmental Sustainability, in September of 2016 but I’ve been working in Jeremy’s lab since summer 2015 during my undergrad. My master’s thesis is focusing on the effects of climate change and land-use change on North American bumblebees, specifically on species richness, community composition and trait distributions. While my current research focuses on pollinators, I’m interested in a broad range of topics. Previously projects I’ve worked on include looking at the value of opportunistic citizen science programs for generating global change biology data, and looking at the origins of the evolution of sex, using filamentous fungi as a model. In the future. I hope to work on applying and implementing biodiversity conservation strategies. And to be a rapper.
Juan Zuloaga, PhD candidate
I am a passionate field biologist and spatial ecologist interested in conservation planning. I am constantly looking for opportunities to work with any living organism. I have tracked mammals using camera traps and collars in Colombia, bird banding in Canada, and monitored sea turtles in Costa Rica.
I did my undergraduate degree in Biology at the Universidad Nacional de Colombia and my honors project tracking the biggest wild cat in South America: the magnificent jaguar. As a result of my field work, I was invited to the ‘Jaguars in the New Millennium Survey’ organized by Wildlife Conservation Society to build a model for conservation planning. I completed my graduate certificate in GIS at Ryerson University and my Master’s degree in Environmental Studies at York University using ecological niche modelling techniques to help ecological restoration in Toronto.
Then, I moved to the macroecology world! I am currently a PhD candidate in Biology at the University of Ottawa where I research biodiversity patterns and mechanisms of diversification across mountain systems in the Americas. I am interested in looking at how environmental barriers in montane environments might affect patterns in species richness, composition similarity, and species traits. If they do, how might climate change affect these historical environmental barriers, evolutionary processes, and biodiversity? Will it compromise the vital ecological services that mountains provide?
“The very worst poetry of all perished along with its creator, Paul Neil Milne Johnstone of Redbridge, in the destruction of the planet Earth. Vogon poetry is mild by comparison.”
Dr. Barbara Frei, Postdoctoral Fellow
I am drawn to ecological research due to my endless curiosity and love for the natural world around me, especially the wildlife within it. I am passionate about conservation and using science, communication, and outreach to find feasible solutions to enable humans and wildlife to co-exist in a healthy and sustainable natural world. I remain an ever-optimistic conservation biologist, which in today’s world may be an endangered species of its own.
I obtained my B.Sc. honours degree from Carleton University in Ottawa in 2004. Next I went to the Dept. of Natural Resource Science at McGill University for both my M.Sc. and Ph.D where I researched the ecology, conservation, and behaviour of two different threatened bird species, the Bobolink and the Red-headed Woodpecker. Through my research and interactions with farmers and landowners, I began to appreciate the complexities and dilemmas faced by conservation biologists in an ever changing, economically driven world.
My postdoctoral research explores and contrasts different approaches to land use planning in agroecosystems, and their ability to conserve biodiversity and provide ecosystem services, in southern Québec and Ontario. I am especially interested in the benefits and drawbacks of the two approaches, and how they may differ with scale. I feel very lucky to be involved with both the Kerr lab at the University of Ottawa and the Bennett lab at McGill University.
Barbara works jointly with us at CFER and with Professor Elena Bennett at McGill University
The Kerr lab alumni have gone on to great things:
Dr. Shawn Leroux - Professor, Memorial U
Dr. Maxim Larrivée - Director of Research, Montreal Insectarium
Dr. Paul Galpern - Professor, U Calgary
Dr. Manisha Kulkarni - Professor, uOttawa
Dr. Alana Taylor-Pindar - Research scientist, UoGuelph
Dr. Adam Algar - Professor, Nottingham
Dr. Rachelle Desrochers - Data Analytics, CIHR
Dr. Laura Coristine - Liber Ero Fellow (PDF)
Dr. Juan Zuloaga
Emily Acheson - spatial epidemiology PhD, UBC
Cassandra Robillard - Museum of Nature
Rosana Soares - Environment and Climate Change Canada
Heather Kharouba - Professor, uOttawa
We have been lucky in having extraordinary research visitors:
Professor Diane Debinski, Iowa State University
Dr. Bronwyn Rayfield, McGill University
Jeanson, A. L., P. Soroye, A. Kadykalo, T. Ward, E. Paquette, A. Abrams, D. Algera, D. Demers, L. Epp, M. Giles, M. Litt, B. Manoucherhri, L. Masson, S. McBeth, A. Paradis, L. Pittet, J. Sebes, S. Steell, A. Thompson, P. Tremblay, E. Tuononen, J. T. Kerr, J. Bennett, S. Cooke. Submitted. Twenty Actions for a “Good” Anthropocene - Perspectives from Early Career Conservation Professionals. Sustainability Science.
J. T. Kerr, D. Debinski, and M. Larrivée. In revision. Range dynamics at the wilderness frontier in North America and climate change-driven shifts in species trait distributions.
Stelbring, P., S. Pinkert, J. T. Kerr, C. Wheat, R. Brandl, and D. Zeuss. In press. Colour lightness of butterfly assemblages across North America and Europe. Scientific Reports.
Singh, G., V. Farjalla, B. Chen, A. Pelling, E. Ceyhan, M. Dominik, E. Alisic, J. T. Kerr, N. Selin, E. Bennett, A. Kemp, K. Chan. In press. Research engagement in policy deemed societally beneficial yet unrewarded. Frontiers in Ecology and the Environment.
Acheson, E., and J. T. Kerr. 2018. Nets versus spraying: A spatial modelling approach reveals indoor residual spraying targets Anopheles mosquito habitats better than mosquito nets in Tanzania. PLoS One 13(10): https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0205270
Zuloaga*, J., D. J. Currie, and J. T. Kerr. 2018. The origins and maintenance of global species endemism. Global Ecology and Biogeography. https://doi.org/10.1111/geb.12834
Kharouba, H. M., J. Lewthwaite, R. Guralnick, J. T. Kerr, & Mark Vellend. 2018. Using insect natural history collections to study global change impacts: challenges and opportunities. Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences 374 (1763): https://doi.org/10.1098/rstb.2017.0405
Sirois-Delisle*, C., and J. T. Kerr. 2018. Climate change-driven range losses among bumblebees are poised to accelerate. Scientific Reports 8: 14464. https://doi.org/10.1038/s41598-018-32665-y
Goulson, D., (others), and J. T. Kerr. 2018. Call to restrict neonicotinoids. Science 360: 973. https://doi.org/10.1126/science.aau0432
Soroye*, P., N. Ahmed, and J. T. Kerr. 2018. Opportunistic citizen science data transform understanding of species distributions, phenology, and diversity gradients for global change research. Global Change Biology 24: 5281-5291. https://doi.org/10.1111/gcb.14358
Lewthwaite, J., AL Angert, SW Kembel, SJ Goring, TJ Davies, AØ Mooers, FAH Sperling, SM Vamosi, JC Vamosi, and J. T. Kerr. 2018. Canadian butterfly climate debt is significant and correlated with range size. Ecography 41: 2005-2015. https://doi.org/10.1111/ecog.03534
Soucy*, J-P. R., AM Slatculescu, C Nyiraneza, NH Ogden, PA Leighton, J. T. Kerr, MA Kulkarni. 2018. High-Resolution Ecological Niche Modeling of Ixodes scapularis Ticks Based on Passive Surveillance Data at the Northern Frontier of Lyme Disease Emergence in North America. Vector-Borne and Zoonotic Diseases 18(5): https://doi.org/10.1089/vbz.2017.2234
Frei*, B., E. M. Bennett, and J. T. Kerr. 2018. Cropland patchiness strongest agricultural predictor of bird diversity for multiple guilds in landscapes of Ontario, Canada. Regional Environmental Change 18: 2105-2115. https://doi.org/10.1007/s10113-018-1343-5
Carroll, C., B. Hartl, G. Goldman, D. J. Rohlf, A. Treves, J. T. Kerr, E. Ritchie, R. Kingsford, K. Gibbs, M. Maron, and J. Watson. 2017. Defending the scientific integrity of conservation-policy processes. Conservation Biology 31(5): https://doi.org/10.1111/cobi.12958. Covered in The Atlantic, Canadian Geographic.
Baum, J. K., M. Dodd, K. Tietjen, J. T. Kerr. 2017. Restoring Canada’s competitiveness in fundamental research: the view from the bench. Global Young Academy. Ottawa, Canada. 104pp. Supporting infographics here and here Report coverage in Science, Nature, Globe and Mail, Toronto Star, Ottawa Citizen, Times Higher Education, The Scientist, Research Money, elsewhere. AAAS Podcast here.
Pettorelli, N., et al. (incl. J. T. Kerr). 2017. Satellite remote sensing of ecosystem function: opportunities, challenges, and the way forward. Remote Sensing in Ecology and Conservation 2: 122-131. https://doi.org/10.1002/rse2.15
Robillard*, C. and J. T. Kerr. 2017. Assessing the shelf life of cost-efficient conservation plans for species at risk across gradients of agricultural land-use. Conservation Biology 31: 837-847. https://doi.org/10.1111/cobi.12886
Desrochers*, R., A. Algar, D. J. Currie, and J. T. Kerr. 2017. Using regional patterns for predicting local temporal change: a test by natural experiment in the Great Lakes bioregion, Ontario, Canada. Diversity and Distributions 23: 261-271. https://doi.org/10.1111/ddi.12518
Lewthwaite*, J., D. Debinski, and J. T. Kerr. 2017. Temperature as the main driver for spatial and temporal turnover in Canadian butterfly species. Global Ecology and Biogeography 26: 459-471. https://doi.org/10.1111/geb.12553
Prudic, K. L., K. P. McFarland, J. C. Oliver, R. A. Hutchinson, E. C. Long, J. T. Kerr, M. Larrivée. 2017. eButterfly: Leveraging massive online citizen science for butterfly conservation. Insects 8(2): 53. https://doi.org/10.3390/insects8020053
Coristine*, L., R. Soares, P. Soroye, and J. T. Kerr. 2016. Dispersal limitation, climate change, and practical tools for butterfly conservation in intensively used landscapes. Natural Areas Journal 36: 440-452. https://doi.org/10.3375/043.036.0410
Donaldson, M., N. Burnett, D. Braun, C. Suski, S. Hinch, S. Cooke, and J. T. Kerr. 2016. Taxonomic bias and international biodiversity conservation research. FACETS 1: 105-113. https://doi.org/10.1139/facets-2016-0011 (Covered by Ottawa Citizen, Fulcrum, Hakai Magazine)
Pettorelli, N., et al. (incl. J. T. Kerr). 2016. Framing the concept of satellite remote sensing essential biodiversity variables: challenges and future directions. Remote Sensing in Ecology and Conservation 2(3): 122-131. https://doi.org/10.1002/rse2.15 (Covered by Science News, EurekAlert, etc.)
Zuloaga*, J., and J. T. Kerr. 2016. Over the top: do thermal barriers along elevation gradients limit biotic similarity? Ecography 40(4): 478-486. https://doi.org/10.1111/ecog.01764 Data and supplemental materials: Ecography2016.zip.
Kerr J. T., Pindar* A, Galpern* P, Packer L, Roberts SM, Rasmont P, Schweiger O, Colla SR, Richardson LL, Wagner DL, Gall LF, Sikes DS, Pantoja A. 2015. Relocation risky for bumblebee colonies - Reply. Science 350: 287. DOI: 10.1126/science.350.6258.287
Kerr J. T., Pindar* A, Galpern* P, Packer L, Roberts SM, Rasmont P, Schweiger O, Colla SR, Richardson LL, Wagner DL, Gall LF, Sikes, DS., Pantoja A. 2015. Climate change impacts on bumblebees converge across continents. Science 349: 177-180. Abstract here. Reprint here. Full HTML text here. Supporting multimedia materials streamed here. Science Latest News here. Nature News and Views here. International media coverage listed partially on “News and Public Science” link on this site. One of the 5 highest profile publications worldwide for July 2015.
Kerr J. T., Pindar* A, Galpern* P, Packer L, Roberts SM, Rasmont P, Schweiger O, Colla SR, Richardson LL, Wagner DL, Gall LF, Sikes DS, Pantoja A .2015. Data from: Climate change impacts on bumblebees converge across continents. Dryad Digital Repository. https://dx.doi.org/10.5061/dryad.gf774
Coristine*, L., and J. T. Kerr. 2015. Climate-induced geographical shifts among passerines: contrasting processes along poleward and equatorward range margins. Ecology and Evolution. DOI: 10.1002/ece3.1683. Covered in CBC’s Quirks and Quarks, and on a number of radio programs.
Acheson*, E., A. Plowright*, and J. T. Kerr. 2015. Where have all the mosquito nets gone? Spatial modelling reveals mosquito net distributions across Tanzania do not target optimal Anopheles mosquito habitats. Malaria Journal 14: 322. Covered by The Fulcrum.
Robillard*, C., L. Coristine*, R. Soares*, and J. T. Kerr. 2015. Facilitating climate change-induced range shifts through a continental land use barrier. Conservation Biology 29: 1586-1595. https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/cobi.12556/abstract. Discussed in Conservation Corridor.
Acheson*, E. S., and J. T. Kerr. 2015. Looking forward by looking back: Using historical calibration to improve forecasts of human disease vector distributions. Vector-borne and Zoonotic Diseases 15: 173-183.
Coristine*, L.E., C.M. Robillard*, J. T. Kerr, C.M. O’Connor, D. Lapointe and S.J. Cooke. 2014. A conceptual framework for the emerging discipline of conservation physiology. Conservation Physiology 2. DOI: 10.1093/conphys/cou033
Boucher-Lalonde, V., J. T. Kerr, and D. J. Currie. 2014. Does climate limit species richness by limiting individual species' ranges? Proceedings of the Royal Society B 281: DOI: 10.1098/rspb.2013.2695. Media attention here, and from CBC here. (PDF).
Kharouba, H. M., S. Paquette, J. T. Kerr, and M. Vellend. 2014. Predicting the sensitivity of butterfly phenology over the past century. Global Change Biology 20: 504-514. Press attention from Conservation Magazine, Environmental news network, etc. (PDF).
Faith, D., B. Collen, A. Arino, P. Koleff, J. Guinotte, J. T. Kerr, and V. Chavan. 2013. Bridging the biodiversity data gaps: recommendations to meet users' data needs. Biodiversity Informatics 8: 41-58. (PDF).
Colla, S., N. Szabo*, L. Gall, D. Wagner, and J. T. Kerr. 2013. Response to Stevens and Jenkins pesticide impacts on bumblebees: a missing piece. Conservation Letters 6: 215-216. (PDF).
J. T. Kerr, and S. Dobrowski. 2013. Predicting the impacts of global change on species, communities, and ecosystems: it takes time. Global Ecology and Biogeography 22: 261-263. Special Issue organized by Dobrowski and Kerr. (The most downloaded article of 2013 for the journal) (PDF).
Leroux*, S., M. Larrivee*, V. Boucher-Lalonde, A. Hurford, J. Zuloaga*, J. T. Kerr, and F. Lutscher. 2013. Mechanistic models for the spatial spread of species under climate change. Ecological Applications 23:815-828. Faculty of 1000 selection. (PDF).
Leroux*, S., and J. T. Kerr. 2013. Land-use development in and surrounding protected areas at the wilderness frontier. Conservation Biology. (PDF).
Larrivee*, M., and J. T. Kerr. 2012. Eastern Canadian butterfly range expansions. Bulletin of the Entomological Society of Canada44: 133-137.
Bedford*, F., R. J. Whittaker, and J. T. Kerr. 2012. Rapid climate change and the latitudinal gradient in geographical range responses in a Canadian pollinator taxon. Botany 90: 587-597. (special issue on pollination and conservation). (PDF).
Davila, Y. C., E. Elle, J. C. Vamosi, L. Hermanutz, J. T. Kerr, C. J. Lortie, A. R. Westwood, T. S. Woodcock, and A. Worley. 2012. Ecosystem services of pollinator diversity: a review of the relationship with pollen limitation of plant reproduction. Botany 90: 535-543.(special issue on pollination and conservation). (PDF)
Szabo*, N. D., S. R. Colla, D. L. Wagner, L. F. Gall, and J. T. Kerr. 2012. Do pathogen spillover, pesticide use, or habitat loss explain recent North American bumblebee declines? Conservation Letters 5: 232-239. (PDF).
Whittaker, R. J., and J. T. Kerr. 2011. In search of general models in evolutionary time and space. Journal of Biogeography 38: 2041-2042. (PDF)
Algar*, A. C., J. T. Kerr, D. J. Currie. 2011. Quantifying the importance of regional and local filters for community trait structure in tropical and temperate regions. Ecology 92: 903-914. (PDF)
Burke*, R., J. Fitzsimmons*, and J. T. Kerr. 2011. A mobility index for Canadian butterfly species based on experts' knowledge. Biodiversity & Conservation 20: 2273-2295. (PDF)
Coristine*, L., and J. T. Kerr. 2011. Habitat loss, climate change, and their implications for the conservation of biodiversity in Canada. Canadian Journal of Zoology 89: 435-451. (PDF)
Desrochers*, R., J. T. Kerr, and D. J. Currie. 2011. How, and how much, natural cover loss increases species richness. Global Ecology and Biogeography 20: 857-867. (PDF)
Kerr, J. T., M. Kulkarni*, and A. Algar*. 2011. Integrating theory and predictive modelling for conservation research. Chapter 1 in Predictive modelling (Springer), Drew, Wiersma, Huettmann, eds.
Kulkarni*, M., R. Desrochers*, J. T. Kerr. 2010. High resolution niche models of malaria vectors in Northern Tanzania: a new capacity to predict malaria risk? PLoS One 5(2): E9396. Front page coverage by Malaria World (March 5, 2010).
Fitzsimmons*, J., S. Schoustra, J. T. Kerr, R. Kassen. 2010. Population consequences of mutational events: effects of antibiotic resistance on the r/K trade-off. Evolutionary Ecology 24: 227-236. (PDF)
Szabo*, N., Algar*, A. C., and J. T. Kerr. 2009. Reconciling topographic and climatic effects on widespread and range-restricted species richness. Global Ecology and Biogeography 18: 735-744. (PDF, supplementary materials)
Algar*, A. C., H. M. Kharouba*, E. R. Young*, and J. T. Kerr. 2009. Predicting the future of species diversity: macroecological theory, climate change, and direct tests of alternate forecasting methods. Ecography 32: 22-33. (PDF)
Svenning, J.-C., J. T. Kerr, and C. Rahbek. 2009. Predicting future shifts in species diversity. Ecography 32: 3-4. (PDF)
Bini et al. 2009. Parameter estimation in geographical ecology: an empirical evaluation of spatial and non-spatial regression. Ecography 32: 193-204. (PDF)
Kharouba*, H. M., A. C. Algar*, and J. T. Kerr. 2009. Historically calibrated predictions of butterfly species' range shift using global change as a pseudo-experiment. Ecology 90: 2213-2222. (PDF)
Nativi, S., P. Mazzetti, H. Saarenmaa, J. T. Kerr, and E. O’Tuama. 2009. Biodiversity and climate change use scenarios framework for the GEOSS interoperability pilot process. Ecological Informatics 4:23-33. (PDF)
Algar*, A. C., J. T. Kerr, and D. J. Currie. 2009. Evolutionary constraints on regional faunas: whom, but not how many. EcologyLetters 12: 57-65. (PDF)
Kharouba*, H. M., J. L. Nadeau*, E. Young*, and J. T. Kerr. 2008. Using species distribution models to effectively conserve biodiversity into the future. Biodiversity 9: 39-47. (PDF)
Currie, D. J. and J. T. Kerr. 2008. Tests of the mid-domain effect: Is there any evidence? Ecological Monographs 78: 3-18. (PDF)
Field, R., Hawkins, Cornell, Currie, Diniz-Filho, Guegan, Kaufman, J. T. Kerr, Mittelbach, Oberdorff, O'Brien, and Turner. 2008. Spatial species richness richness gradients across scales: a meta-analysis. Journal of Biogeography. (PDF)
Currie, D. J., and J. T. Kerr. 2007. Testing, as opposed to supporting, the Mid-domain Hypothesis: a reply to Lees and Colwell. Ecology Letters 10: E9-E10. (PDF)
Nativi, S., P. Mazzetti, H. Saarenmaa, J. T. Kerr, H. Kharouba, E. O Tuama, & S.J.S. Khalsa. 2007. Predicting the impact of climate change on biodiversity - a GEOSS scenario. The Full Picture. Published by Tudor Rose Press for Group on Earth Observations. (PDF)
Hawkins, B. A., J.A.F. Diniz-Filho, L. M. Bini, M. B. Araujo, R. Field, J. Hortal, J. T. Kerr, C. Rahbek, M. Rodriguez, N. J. Sanders. 2007. Metabolic theory and diversity gradients: where do we go from here? Ecology 88: 1898-1902. (PDF)
Hawkins, B. A., Fabio S. Albuquerque, Miguel B. Araújo, Jan Beck, Luis Mauricio Bini, Francisco J. Cabrero-Sañudo, Isabel Castro-Parga, José Alexandre Felizola Diniz-Filho, Dolores Ferrer-Castán, Richard Field, José F. Gómez, Joaquín Hortal, J. T. Kerr, Ian J. Kitching, Jorge L. León-Cortés, Jorge M. Lobo, Daniel Montoya, Juan Carlos Moreno, Miguel Á. Olalla-Tárraga, Juli G. Pausas, Hong Qian, Carsten Rahbek, Miguel Á. Rodríguez, Nathan J. Sanders, and Paul Williams. 2007. A global evaluation of metabolic theory as an explanation for terrestrial species richness gradients. Ecology 88: 1877-1888. Listed as a Faculty of 1000 top paper. (PDF)
White*, P.J., and J. T. Kerr. 2007. Human impacts on environment-diversity relationships: evidence for biotic homogenization from butterfly species richness patterns. Global Ecology and Biogeography 16, 290-299. (PDF - optimized for web. Cover art for May 2007 issue of GEB.)
Kerr, J. T., and H. M. Kharouba*. 2007. Climate change and conservation biology. Theoretical Ecology, 3rd edition, R.M. May and A. Maclean, editors. Book home page at Oxford University Press here. Reviewed in Science.
Algar*, A. C., J. T. Kerr, and D. J. Currie. 2007. A test of Metabolic Theory as the mechanism underlying broad-scale species richness gradients. Global Ecology and Biogeography 16: 170-178. (PDF)
White*, P.J., and J. T. Kerr. 2006. Contrasting spatial and temporal global change impacts on butterfly species richness during the 20th century. Ecography 29: 908-918. (PDF)
Kerr, J. T., M. Perring*, and D. J. Currie. 2006. The missing Madagascan mid-domain effect. Ecology Letters 9: 149-159. (PDF)
Deguise*, I., and J. T. Kerr. 2006. Protected areas and prospects for endangered species conservation. Conservation Biology 20: 48-55. (PDF)
Olthof, I., D. Pouliot, R. Fraser, A. Clouston, S. Wang, W. Chen, J. Orazietti, J. Poitevin, D. McLennan, J. Kerr, & M. Sawada. 2006. Using satellite remote sensing to assess and monitor ecosystem integrity and climate change in Canada's National Parks. Proceedings of the International Geoscience and Remote Sensing Symposium 2006. (PDF)
Kerr, J. T., and J. Cihlar. 2005. Land use mapping. In Encyclopedia of Social Sciences, Academic Press.
Kerr, J. T., and I. Deguise*. 2004. Habitat loss and limits to recovery of endangered wildlife. Ecology Letters 7: 1163-1169. (PDF). Cover art for this issue.
Currie, D. J., G. G. Mittelbach, H. V. Cornell, R. Field, J.-F. Guegan, B. A. Hawkins, D. M. Kaufman, J. T. Kerr, T. Oberdorff, E. O'Brien, J. R. G. Turner. 2004. A critical review of species-energy theory. Ecology Letters 7: 1121-1134. (PDF)
Kerr, J. T. and J. Cihlar. 2004. Patterns and causes of species endangerment in Canada. Ecological Applications 14: 743-753. (PDF)
Kerr, J. T., and M. Ostrovsky. 2003. From space to species: ecological applications for remote sensing. Trends in Ecology and Evolution 18: 299-305. (PDF)
Hawkins, B. A., R. Field, H. V. Cornell, D. J. Currie, J.-F. Guegan, D. M. Kaufman, J. T. Kerr, G. G. Mittelbach, T. Oberdorff, E. E. Porter, and J. R. G. Turner. 2003. Energy, water, and broad-scale geographic patterns of species richness. Ecology 84: 3105-3117. (PDF)
Cihlar, J., B. Guindon, J. Beaubien, R. Latifovic, D. Peddle, M. Wulder, R. Fernandes, and J. T. Kerr. 2003. From need to product: a methodology for completing a land cover map of Canada with Landsat data. Canadian Journal of Remote Sensing 29: 171-186. (PDF.)
Kerr, J. T., and J. Cihlar. 2003. Land use and land use intensity estimation in Canada from SPOT4/VEGETATION and ancillary data. Global Ecology and Biogeography 12: 161-172. (PDF.)
2002 and before
Kerr, J. T. and T. V. Burkey. 2002. Endemism, diversity, and the threat of tropical moist forest extinctions. Biodiversity and Conservation 11: 695-704. (PDF)
Kerr, J. T., T. R. E. Southwood, and J. Cihlar. 2001. Remotely sensed habitat diversity predicts butterfly species richness and community similarity in Canada. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences 98: 11365-11370. (PDF)
Kerr, J. T. 2001. Global biodiversity: From description to understanding. Trends in Ecology and Evolution 16: 424-425. (PDF)
Kerr, J. T. 2001. Butterfly species richness patterns in Canada: energy, heterogeneity, and the potential consequences of climate change. Conservation Ecology 5: 10. URL: https://www.consecol.org/vol5/iss1/art10.
Kerr, J. T., A. Sugar, and L. Packer. 2000. Indicator taxa, rapid biodiversity assessment, and nestedness in an endangered ecosystem. Conservation Biology 14: 1726-1734. (PDF)
Kerr, J. T., and D. J. Currie. 1999. Evolutionary and environmental controls on broad-scale patterns of biodiversity in North America. EcoScience 6: 329-337. (PDF)
Currie, D. J., J. T. Kerr, and A. Francis. 1999. 12 general propositions regarding spatial patterns of diversity. EcoScience 6: 392-399. (PDF)
Sugar, A., Finnamore, A., Goulet, H., Cummings, G., Kerr, J. T., De Giusti, M., and Packer, L. 1999. A preliminary survey of Symphytan and Aculeate hymenoptera from oak savannas in southern Ontario. Proceedings of the Ontario Entomological Society 129: 9-18. (https://www.entsocont.com/p1998.htm)
Kerr, J. T., and L. Packer. 1999. The environmental basis of North American species richness patterns among Epicauta (Coleoptera: Meloidae). Biodiversity and Conservation 8: 617-628. (PDF)
Kerr, J. T. 1999. Weak links: Rapoport's rule and large-scale species richness patterns. Global Ecology and Biogeography 8: 47-54. (PDF)
Kerr, J. T., R. Vincent, and D. J. Currie. 1998. Determinants of Lepidoptera richness in North America. EcoScience 5: 448-453. (PDF)
Kerr, J. T., & L. Packer. 1998. Effects of climate change on Canadian mammal species richness. Environmental Monitoring and Assessment 49: 261-268. (PDF)
Kerr, J. T., & L. Packer. 1997. Habitat heterogeneity as a determinant of mammal species richness in high energy regions. Nature385: 252-254. (PDF)
Kerr, J. T. 1997. Species richness, endemism, and the choice of areas for conservation. Conservation Biology 11: 1094-1100. (PDF)
Kerr, J. T., & D. J. Currie. 1995. Effects of human activity on global extinction risk. Conservation Biology 9: 1528-1538. (PDF)
Our research group has nearly 100 publications, with a number of additional articles in process at all times. I don't list "in preparation" works. We try to make every contribution count in terms of scientific and societal benefit (i.e. NOT "minimum publishable units", and we don't publish the same discovery repeatedly using subtly different data). We work with media frequently and have contributed to policies and legislation provincially and nationally in Canada. Examples of impact include contributions to the Ontario Endangered Species Act, conservation commitments in the northern boreal regions of Canada, and issues around science integrity.
Scientific publication is in transition. We have often published our work using the "gold" open access standard, but associated costs have grown unsustainably and, frankly, the costs journals charge for this are absurd. We will shift, sometimes, to the "green" standard. Social media play increasingly important roles in publication. This kind of communication is helpful and can inform colleagues about discoveries, but mainstream media covers much of our work pretty intensively and this continues to be way more effective in reaching the public.
Globe and Mail science feature on the Kerr lab research project, eButterfly.
Interview on Quirks and Quarks following announcement of a national ban on neonicotinoid pesticides: link here. Canada will join France as the second country in the world with this ban. A triumph for evidence-based decision-making.
Jeremy’s full interview on Quirks and Quarks on neonicotinoid pesticides is live.
Jeremy Kerr is quoted in Popular Science on the issue of how and why neonicotinoid pesticides harm pollinators.
Calgary’s hive hobbyists raise awareness for honeybees
Media: The Globe and Mail
Date: September 25, 2015
Encouraging honeybee colonies in cities can be helpful but let’s remember the native pollinators also.
Vanishing Canada: Why we’re all losers in Ottawa’s war on data
Date: September 18, 2015
Harper’s Government has destroyed/degraded Canada’s capacity to measure most everything. Ideology before evidence.
How climate change shrank the tongues of long-tongued bumblebees
Media: The Atlantic, Science Magazine, The Scientist, Mother Jones, Grist, etc.
Date: September, 2015
Comments/perspectives on new research on rapid evolution in bumblebee traits as an indirect result of climate change.
1 in 6 species at risk without action on climate change, study finds
Media: The Globe and Mail
Date: Thursday, April 30, 2015
Consensus predictions for climate change impacts indicate sharp increases in extinction rates
‘Brontosaurus’ comes thundering back in science’s name game
Media: The Ottawa Citizen
Date: Tuesday, April 7, 2015
Taxonomic revisions are common and can change the public perceptions of well-known species.
Three species of bats added to Ottawa’s endangered animals list
Media: The Globe and Mail
Date: Friday, December 19, 2014
After a two year delay, and in contrast with rapid provincial action, the federal government has at last responded positively to the emergency listing request put forward by COSEWIC in 2012.
Protection for at-risk species falters
Media: The Globe and Mail
Date: Monday, December 1, 2014
Canada’s federal government has prevented new species from being added to the at-risk list for years, in apparent contravention of the requirements of the Species At Risk Act.
Bumblebees in trouble
Media: CBC Radio 1
Date: Thursday, June 5, 2014
Bumblebee species are in danger of extinction and they need your help. Citizen science for bumblebees!
Long winter may have lasting effects across Ontario
Publication: Global News
Date: Tuesday, April 15, 2014
After a long and cold winter, the first of its kind in decades, there could be substantial biological consequences, like rolling back newly-established populations of giant swallowtails across Eastern Ontario. Such species arrived recently because of rapid climate changes.
UN climate body backtracks on risk of species extinction
Publication: Toronto Star
Date: Monday March 31st, 2014
With regards to the risk of species extinction and climate change, Jeremy Kerr, Department of Biology, discloses that, "there is a lot of evidence of biological impact (of climate change) but there is not much evidence of specific extinction."
Biologists wait to see whether warm-weather insects survived brutal winter
Publication: Ottawa Citizen
Date: Tuesday April 1st, 2014
The giant swallowtail is a gorgeous butterfly from Canada’s extreme south. Biologists won’t know for certain until warm weather begins, but they’re watching to see whether the butterfly and other warm-weather insects will survive the coldest winter in 20 years. Jeremy Kerr, Department of Biology, reveals that this year will be especially insightful for understanding how climate change is going to alter the geographic range of species.
Monarch butterfly count in Mexico reveals steep decline
Publication: Saskatoon StarPhoenix, Austrian Tribune, Ottawa Citizen
Date: Tuesday March 26, 2014
Overwintering monarch butterflies in Mexico have declined sharply once again. The latest population size is the smallest ever recorded. Jeremy Kerr, uOttawa Research Chair in Macroecology and Conservation, comments on causes and prospects for recovery.
A Note on Media Engagement:
The Kerr Lab does a lot of media work around biodiversity conservation, climate change, and the need to defend science in Canada, among other areas. It’s just a normal part of the job, but it is important to remember that working with the media means keeping a different set of rules in mind when having a conversation. First and foremost: YOU’RE ON THE RECORD. It is possible to have conversations on background information, but this must be agreed explicitly in advance. Otherwise, when you say something, you might be quoted on it. This can be embarrassing if you get taken out of context. Everyone makes mistakes when working with the media - might as well just accept that - but learn from every experience. Refine. Repeat. Improve. And be very careful about distinguishing what can be said confidently on the basis of scientific knowledge and what may be a matter of personal opinion, ethics, politics, etc.
We’ve been on CBC’s The National several times, other national news things (Global and CTV), local TV news, lots in the Toronto Star and Ottawa Citizen (never in the National Post though.... and I’m fine with that) and other papers in North America, and a lot of radio, especially CBC Radio 1. We did a show with Rick Mercer once around our anti-malaria intervention and research - that was an incredibly interesting experience too. He’s extraordinarily funny and none of his hilarious remarks with us were scripted.
The trick is: care about what you’re saying and say it concisely, accurately, memorably, and WITHOUT JARGON.
We also give a fair number of science presentations in areas beyond traditional scientific venues. We think this is particularly important these days, as there is an unusual amount (for Canada) of disinformation about basic scientific evidence for conservation and global change. We need to present the evidence as it actually exists to enable more informed decision-making.
Public decision-making isn’t going to be made better if scientists don’t help the general public and political establishment understand the nature of discovery and the evidence that exists for some of the most pressing environmental challenges.
Media engagement around “Climate change impacts on bumblebees converge across continents”, published in Science in July, 2015
Media coverage for this paper was global and in many languages. We have not tracked all coverage. The publication of this paper, edited by Dr. Sacha Vignieri at Science, was the subject of a press event that the American Association for the Advancement of Science organized. The AAAS and their chief press officer, Natasha Pinol, decided this work seemed significant (we were just happy to have addressed the reviewers’ comments) and we worked with them and our colleagues at York and University of Calgary to assemble multimedia materials for the onsite press event. Natasha’s efforts deserve great credit and so do those of the uOttawa media crew. Here is a partial list of media that excludes much non-English coverage and most radio broadcasts. We will expand the list when we have a more complete picture of how this work was covered.
The broadcast media and newspapers continue to include excellent, highly professional people who try to get the facts correct. There are also “the crazies”, but they’re not very subtle and so far we’ve avoided them successfully (except around the bumblebee work - they found us). It takes practice to communicate in brief and comprehensible terms, but I don’t usually find it too hard to do. Practice helps. So does a bit of background reading on how to work with the media without leaving your scientific integrity at the door.
We were misquoted a few times and some media outlets suggested that climate change is a silver bullet killer for bumblebees, and that nothing else matters. That just isn’t right at all and it isn’t what we said. It isn’t even what we implied. We did find a distinct effect of climate change that was not due to neonicotinoids or habitat changes, but we already know those factors kill bees. Honestly, how anyone can find it surprising that insecticides kill insects is beyond me (neonicotinoids are insecticides). Nevertheless, neonics and habitat losses are not a silver bullet explanation any more than climate change is. We are hitting bees with everything we’ve got. It’s like claiming that because smoking causes lung cancer, it is impossible to suffer health problems for any other reasons.
Oh, and this work led to many wingnut emails also. We have been informed, in no uncertain terms, that we are secret agents for the pesticide industry, that cell towers cause global pollinator declines, and that Satan is responsible. Oh yes, and that tomatoes don’t need bumblebees. Ever. The climate change deniers trolled out over this too, but didn’t say anything unusual or factual. We receive many nice messages also.
Bumblebees being crushed by climate change (Science Magazine)
Climate change crushes bee populations (Nature Magazine)
Climate change causing bumblebee habitat loss, say scientists (The Guardian)
Bumblebees trapped by warming climate, study finds (Globe and Mail)
Le territoire des bourdons se rétrécit sous l'effet du réchauffement climatique (Le Monde)
El mundo se queda sin abejorros (El Pais, in Spain and Brazil)
Klimawandel verkleinert Lebensraum fur Hummeln (Frankfurter Neue Presse)
Bees Are Losing Their Habitat Because of Climate Change (Time Magazine)
Buzz Kill for Bumblebees: climate change is shrinking their range (NPR All Things Considered)
Bumblebees Are Being Bumped Off by Climate Change, Scientists Say (NBC News)
10 Things to know for Friday (ABC News)
Bumblebees feeling the sting of climate change (CBS News)
Buzzkill: Global Warming Is Wiping Out the Bees (U.S News and World Report)
Climate 'vice' constricts bumblebees' natural ranges (BBC News)
Climate vice squeezes bumblebee habitat from north and south (New Scientist)
Climate Change Is Shrinking Where Bumblebees Range, Researchers Find (New York Times)
Bumblebee habitats are shrinking at an alarming rate, and scientists are blaming climate change (Washington Post)
Rising temperatures due to climate change are latest threat to bumblebees (Los Angeles Times)
Bumblebees Are Getting Trapped In A 'Climate Vise' As Hotter Temperatures Shrink Habitats (Think Progress)
Bumblebees Are Getting Squeezed by Climate Change (Smithsonian.com)
Climate change is killing off bumblebees: study (CBC National)
Global warming shrinks range of pollinating bumblebees (Scientific American)
We’re boiling the bumblebees (Business News Network)
Bumblebees Can't Handle the Heat, Can't Escape the Kitchen (Slate Magazine)
Buzzkill: global warming shrinks range of pollinating bumblebees (Daily Mail UK) (Aussi paru dans | Also appeared in 3 autres sources d'information | 3 other news outlets)
Bee population tumbling as global warming 'squeezes' them into smaller habitats (Mirror)
Scientists propose international effort to assist bumblebees to migrate further north after study finds rising temperatures linked to their decline (The Independent)
Climate Change Is Shrinking Bumblebee Habitats, Population: Study (International Business Times)
Bumblebees could be wiped out by global warming (Irish Examiner)
Plight of the bumblebee: climate change puts insect at risk (Irish Times)
Bumblebees are losing southern habitat as the climate warms (Mashable)
Le fragile vol du bourdon (Le Devoir)
(21:27 - 23:55) The National for July 9, 2015 (CBC News The National)
Study blames climate change for shrinking bumble bee populations (CTV News National) (Aussi paru dans | Also appeared in 27 autres sources d'information | 27 other news outlets)
Bumble bees struggling to survive warming world (Toronto Star)
Rising Temperatures Are Squishing Bumblebee Habitats (VICE)
Climate change killing off bumblebees at alarming rate: study (Global News National)
(3:20 - 5:40) Global National – July 9 (Global News National)
Global warming is the cause of bumblebee decline: study (CBC Radio - As It Happens)
New study points to climate change as cause for decline in bees (CBC Radio – All in a Day)
Bumblebees squeezed by 'climate vise,' study says (Ottawa Citizen) (Aussi paru dans | Also appeared in 8 autres sources d'information | 8 other news outlets)
Déclin rapide des bourdons en raison des changements climatiques (Le Droit)
Changements climatiques : les bourdons en péril, dit une étude (Radio-Canada) (Aussi paru dans | Also appeared in 2 autres sources d'information | 2 other news outlets)
Bumblebees at risk of extinction as climate change shrinks range (Metro Canada) (Aussi paru dans | Also appeared in 5 autres sources d'information | 5 other news outlets)
Réchauffement climatique : urgence pour les bourdons (24 Matins)
Climate change is putting a deadly squeeze on bumblebee populations worldwide (The Verge)
Warmer climate threatens to have a devastating effect on bee populations (Western Morning News)
Bumblebees and Narrowing Range: Climate Change is Only Reason (Nature World News)
A 'Climate Vise' is Squeezing Bumble Bees' Range (Climate Central)
Bumblebee Habitat Shrinking Due to Climate Change, Plus 12 Other Animals at Risk (Weather)
Earth Is Losing Its Bumblebees (Live Science)
Climate Change is Destroying Bee Habitat and Shrinking Bumblee Populations (Science World Report)
Global Warming Causing Great Loss of Bumblebee Habitat, Say Researchers (Sci-News)
Here's Why All the Bees Are Dying (Mother Jones)
It's too hot for bumblebees in the south—and they're not moving north (Quartz)
Research shows bumble bees suffering in a changing climate (Calgary Herald)
Bumblebees dying, losing ground due to climate change (Straits Times)
Bumblebees are no longer travelling thanks to climate change, says new study (Metro 52.2M)
Study reveals alarming effects of climate change on bumble bees (Digital Journal)
Bumblebees Are Dying Out Thanks To Climate Change (Vocativ)
Bumble bee ranges rapidly shrinking across continents due to climate change (660 News)
Bumble bees struggling to survive warming world (Our Windsor) (Aussi paru dans | Also appeared in 3 autres sources d'information | 3 other news outlets)
Study: Bumblebees in North America, Europe feeling climate change's sting (Guelph Mercury)
Climate Change Is Shrinking Where Bumblebees Range, Researchers Find (Demanjo)
A real-time, online checklist and photo storage program, e-Butterfly is providing a new way for the butterfly community to report, organize and access information about butterflies in North America. Launched in 2011, e-Butterfly provides rich data sources for basic information on butterfly abundance, distribution, and phenology at a variety of spatial and temporal scales across North America.
Dr. Juan Zuloaga has just had another paper accepted, this time on global gradients of species endemism, in the high impact journal, Global Ecology and Biogeography. Congratulations, Dr. Zuloaga!
Peter Soroye’s first first-authored paper accepted in Global Change Biology. Amazing work and a milestone for citizen science research and e-Butterfly.org.
Jeremy Kerr is a signatory to a letter in Science on the evidence supporting drastic reductions in neonicotinoid pesticide use worldwide: https://science.sciencemag.org/content/360/6392/973.1
Jeremy Kerr has been appointed to NSERC Council by Cabinet, and the appointment was approved by the Governor General in February. He’s acting also as Chair of the Committee on Discovery Research, which advises NSERC’s VP Pierre Charest on 70% of its $1.2B annual expenditures.
Jeremy Kerr has won the Partners in Research Science Ambassador National Award!
Kerr’s work on national science policy and funding has included invited presentations to the Science Writers and Communicators of Canada meeting in September (on citizen science and on the prospects for major science policy reforms in Canada), an invited presentation on scientist engagement at the Canadian Science Policy Conference, the closing plenary presentation at the 11th Gender Summit, an invitational panel event at iPolitics hq in Ottawa (with David Naylor, Paul Wells, and Brenda Austin-Smith), an op ed in The Hill Times (Kerr, Baum, and Naylor), meetings with science policy leaders in the Prime Minister’s Office, Minister of Finance Morneau, Minister of Science Duncan and her excellent staff, discussions with Universities Canada, the U15, CAUT, and others. It has been an epic run and incredibly worthwhile. Canada is poised for historic changes to research support and historic policy changes are well underway.
Minister of Science Duncan has appointed the extraordinary and capable Dr. Mona Nemer as Canada’s Chief Scientific Advisor. This was the final step on the efforts Minister Duncan, Kerr, and others began in 2015 to restore scientific integrity with the May 26 Motion to Parliament. There is more to do, but seeing Dr. Nemer appointed was a special and historic moment.
Paper in Science, by Jeremy Kerr, on neonicotinoids and bees: A cocktail of toxins: 10.1126/science.aan6713
Major report released: “Restoring Canada’s competitiveness in fundamental research: The view from the bench”. Co-authored with Julia Baum, UVic. Covered in Science, Nature, Globe and Mail, Toronto Star, Times Higher Education, Ottawa Citizen, and elsewhere.
March - April 2017
March for Science in Ottawa was a great success. Jeremy spoke on Parliament Hill in favour of a positive vision for science, the progress we’ve made on this in Canada, and the progress we need to make again in the US.
Thank you to Queen’s University Biology for the great Research Symposium on Friday, April 21, and the chance to be a plenary speaker to wrap up a great day.
Incredibly grateful to NSERC, the Evaluation Group, and peer reviewers for NSERC Discovery Grant renewal, and a Discovery Accelerator Supplement.
Jeremy spoke at Elmwood School on Earth Day, monarch butterflies, and the need to make a difference. Thanks to an incredible group of girls and teachers for the chance to speak with you on Wednesday, April 19.
Catherine Sirois-Delisle and Peter Soroye spoke at the NatureServe meeting in Ottawa, speaking about their outstanding research accomplishments. Emerging research leaders!
January - February 2017
We have published a Policy Options piece summarizing more detailed advice to Minister McKenna on more effective Species At Risk management for Canada. Grateful to leaders (and co-authors) like Jeff Hutchings (who led the writing on this piece), Sally Otto, Jeannette Whitton, Scott Findlay, and Arne Mooers. This is also the first publication ever where author order is determined by software and alphabetically by first name.
Jeremy contributed to the Museum of Nature’s Arctic Biodiversity Symposium. All presentations are online at https://nature.ca/en/research-collections/research-projects/centre-arctic-knowledge-exploration/arctic-symposium and https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oKSMD0DJ5KU (Jeremy’s at about 2:45).
The Kerr Lab team took over Research Matters instagram on Dec 13: #TakeOverTuesday. https://twitter.com/ontarioresearch/status/808721796862185472. We care about excellence in communicating science as well as traditional research excellence.
Cassandra Robillard’s main data chapter for her (excellent) thesis was just accepted in Conservation Biology. BRAVO, CASSIE!!! This paper has immediate policy implications for recovery of species at risk in Canada and elsewhere.
Jeremy has won the 2016 Excellence in Media Relations Award.
Minister of Science, the Honourable Kirsty Duncan, announced the search for Canada’s Chief Science Advisor at NRC HQ on Monday, Dec 5, 2016. Amazing journey, and much work with the Minister and excellent staff, since our Motion to Parliament last May that set this policy in motion. Engagement by scientists can lead to policy changes: the key is trying to make a difference with an issue.
Jeremy was very busy at the Canadian Science Policy Conference (CSPC), co-organizing an event on re-envisioning the Canadian science landscape to account for rapid evolutionary change in how research is conducted, and serving as a panellist in Imogen Coe’s equity, diversity, and inclusivity session. The session Jeremy co-organized with Rees Kassen was mentioned the next day in Science. Great work by co-panellists Maria DaRosa, Karly Kehoe, Andrew Pelling, and Val Walker.
Jeremy presented his lab’s research in Parliament, giving a talk entitled, “The great biodiversity challenge: conserving nature through a century of unprecedented change”. Thanks to Speaker of the House Regan, PAGSE, NSERC, and the RSC for the opportunity to discuss biodiversity, ecosystem services, and citizen science in such an extraordinary setting. Shout-outs to excellent Canadian eco-evo researchers and institutions, and thanks to Parliamentarians for excellent discussions afterward and since.
Our symposium, “Life on the edge: Mechanisms of adapting to climate change”, was accepted at CSEE 2017, co-organized by Julia Baum and Danielle Claar. Excited to have Amy Angert, Carissa Brown, Terrie Klinger, and Jen Sunday joining us. Balancing marine and terrestrial perspectives.
Rosana Soares defended her thesis and did a marvellous job of it! Bravo, Rosie!
Dr. Rachelle Desrochers has published another paper from her research, this time in Diversity and Distributions, looking at how bird diversity changes relative to local extinction-colonization dynamics.
Monarch butterflies and our lab in the news for Mission Monarch with Presidents Obama and Pena Nieto of Mexico at Macleans. Also appeared on CBC Radio 1’s In Town and Out (“Why should we cry over less milkweed”) and on CTV nationally and in Toronto. Jeremy published an op-ed in The Hill Times that comments on the role of monarchs as both symbol and an indicator of the need for profound change in conservation policy.
Mission Monarch launches. Using remote sensing and the power of citizen science to understand monarch breeding habitat across Canada and begin the critical task of monarch butterfly recovery. Built on e-Butterfly.org foundations.
Juan Zuloaga’s exciting paper on thermal barriers and elevation gradients’ unique impacts on biodiversity was accepted at Ecography. Data and supplementary materials for this paper are freely available on the Papers page.
Laura Coristine has been accepted into the extraordinary Liber Ero program! Many congratulations!
February 6: Kerr Lab is on Quirks and Quarks again. Laura Coristine speaks to Bob McDonaldabout her exciting new study on rapid climate change-related population losses of birds in North America! Songbirds’ range gets squeezed by climate change.
We have published an op-ed in The Toronto Star setting out priorities for restoring federal science integrity. Co-authored with Dr Isabelle Côté, Jeff Hutchings, David Schindler, Andrew Gonzalez, and Brett Favaro.
A short message on the need to account for sensible criteria - widely known in the climate change community but less so in the pollinator community - when considering where, how, and when to move pollinator species for managed relocation. In Science.
Great work by Cassandra, Rosana, and Laura on continental perspectives on helping species respond to climate change. Covered in conservation news: https://conservationcorridor.org/2015/10/review-facilitating-range-shifts-across-barriers/
Congratulations to Emily Acheson on the Malaria Journal paper looking at bednet use across Tanzania relative to mosquito habitat suitability.
Congratulations to Cassandra Robillard, Laura Coristine, and Rosana Soares on the publication of our most recent paper in Conservation Biology: Facilitating climate change-induced range shifts across continental land use barriers.
Our report to Science was published, examining how 67 bumblebee species have responded to changing environmental conditions across Europe and North America. There is a distinct and critical role for climate change in these trends, but pesticides (and neonicotinoids), pathogens, and habitat loss harm bees also. We have seen global media coverage (TV, print, radio, online, twittersphere, etc.). New York Times, Washington Post, The Guardian, The Globe and Mail, Toronto Star, LA Times, Independent, NBC, CBS, USA Today, NPR, CBC Radio and The National, CTV National News, many local radio broadcasts across Canada and the United States, Ottawa Citizen, El Pais, Le Monde, German Public Radio, Frankfurter Algemeine Zeitung, Kyodo News, Le Devoir, La Presse, and many other outlets covered the work. We are grateful to colleagues internationally who made insightful comments on the biological processes and trends for bumblebee losses following climate change.
The Global Young Academy held its annual general meeting in the Ottawa region, and we held a special event at the National Research Council headquarters. We organized an event for Members of Parliament who have moved from academics to public life to discuss their experiences. Very special thanks to Dr. Kennedy Stewart and Dr. Kirsty Duncan. Conservatives were a no-show.
Gordon Orians, Nigel Roulet, Jim Schaeffer, Jeff Wells, and Jeremy Kerr met with Kathleen Wynne, Premier of Ontario, to discuss strategies to conserve massive expanses of wilderness in Ontario’s boreal. Thanks to Premier Wynne for extraordinary commitment.
With the Xerces Society, Wildlife Habitat Canada, BeeSpotter, the Natural History Museum in London, UK, and the Montreal Insectarium (where Max Larrivee, my past postdoc, is director of research), we launched BumblebeeWatch.org in 2014. We're looking forward to new discoveries from this amazing facility!
Throughout my travels I take care to observe my surroundings for the animals and insects with whom we share our space. Here is a small collection of photographs from natural environments as far as Tanzania and as close as my own backyard.