Lab Members

Principal Investigator

Lauren J. Chapman
Professor, Department of Biology, McGill University
Honorary Lecturer, Makerere University, Kampala, Uganda
e-mail: lauren.chapman@mcgill.ca

Canada Research Chair in Respiratory Ecology and Aquatic Conservation

Research and Teaching Interests: Aquatic ecology and conservation, ecophysiology, evolutionary ecology, adaptive divergence, respiratory ecology, extreme environments.
In my research group, we integrate the morphology and physiology of fishes with their ecology and evolution to understand effects of environmental stressors on fishes. Current studies focus on consequences of hypoxic (low-oxygen) stress for fish performance and fitness, and interactions of hypoxia with other pervasive aquatic stressors: global warming, turbidity, invasive species, overfishing. My research program is geared toward training undergraduates (independent studies, Honours theses, USRAs), graduate students (McGill University, Makerere University, Uganda), and postdoctoral fellows. The combination of my field research (empirical survey, field experiments) and laboratory experiments both in Canada and East Africa offers a wide range of opportunities to students; and cross-cultural exchange and collaboration between McGill and Makerere student offers intangible cultural and academic benefits. Honours thesis students and other undergraduate researchers are involved in on-campus aspects of this program; summer USRA students are often engaged in field research in Uganda or laboratory studies at McGill.
 
   
Current Graduate Students

Elizabeth Nyboer
Ph.D. student, Department of Biology, McGill University
Topic: Vulnerability and adaptability of Africa’s inland fisheries to climate change: an interdisciplinary approach to a multi-dimensional conservation challenge.

Heather Stewart
Ph.D. student, Department of Biology, McGill University
Biodiversity, Ecosystem Services and Sustainability (BESS) program 
Co-supervised by Dr. Andrew Altieri (University of Florida)
Topic: The roles of stress and disturbance in the spatial variability of biodiversity: Lessons from mangroves

David Hunt
Ph.D. student, Department of Biology, McGill University
Co-supervised by Dr. Andrew Hendry (Biology, Redpath Museum, McGill University)
Topic: Contemporary parallel evolution in response to hypoxia in an East African cyprinid.

Marisol Valverde
M.Sc., Department of Biology, McGill University
Biodiversity, Ecosystem Services and Sustainability (BESS) program 
Co-supervised by Dr. Mark Torchin (STRI, Panama)
Topic: Potential impacts of the introduced peacock bass, Cichla monoculus, on the diet and trophic ecology of a native predator in Lake Gatun, Panama. Thesis completed.

Shelby Clarke
M.Sc. student, Department of Biology, McGill University
Co-supervised by Dr. Rüdiger Krahe, Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin
Topic: Hypoxia tolerance and conservation of weakly electric fishes in East Africa.

Lindsay Potts
M.Sc. student, Department of Biology, McGill University
Co-supervised by Dr. Nick Mandrak, University of Toronto Scarborough
Topic: Informing a better conservation strategy: Examining the effects of multiple stressors on the endangered Pugnose Shiner

   
Current Lab Members (Others)

Igor Mitrofanov
Ichtyologist and collaborator on the evolutionary ecology of haplochromine cichlids.

   
Research Assistant
Kiran Yendamiri Topic: Long-term dynamics of East Africa swamp-river systems.
 

Lab Alumni

Postdoctoral Fellows

Dr. Gladys Bwanika (Department of Biological Sciences, Makerere University)
Funded by: SIDA Bilateral Research,
Project: Modelling of exploitable fish populations: A case study of Nile Perch in Lake
Nabugabo.
November 2011 – present.
Current Position – Senior Lecturer, Department of Biological Sciences, Makerere University, Uganda

Dr. Katja Rasanen (Department of Biology, McGill University, in collaboration with Dr. A. Hendry)
Project: Ecological speciation: Mechanisms of reproductive isoloation in fishes.
July 2005 – December 2005.
Current Position: Professor, Department of Aquatic Ecology/ETH-Zürich, Institute of integrative Biology.

Dr. Inke van der Sluijs (Department of Biology, McGill University)
Project: Mate selection and phenotypic plasticity in the widespread African cichlid,
Pseudocrenilabrus multicolor. March 2008 – February 2010.
Current Position: Technical Manager for the Round Table on Palm Oil Production in Europe

Dr. Erin Reardon (Department of Biology, McGill University, co-supervised by Dr. R. Krahe)
Project: Hypoxia and the energetic of electric fishes. January 2010 – June 2010.
Current Position: Associate Research Fellow, BioScience, University of Exeter

Dr. Emilie Saulnier-Talbot (Department of Biology, McGill, co-supervised by Dr. I. Gregory-Eaves).
Project: Can aquatic insect sub-fossil remains be used as a reliable proxy to infer past
changes in fish populations in the crater lakes of western Uganda? May 2008 – Dec. 2010.
Current Position: Freelance Environmental Scientist

Dr. Susanne Gray – Department of Biology, McGill University (co-supervised by Dr. N. Mandrak, DFO)
Project: Interaction of turbidity and hypoxia on the evolutionary ecology of an African cichlid. January 2009 – July 2013.
Current Position: Assistant Professor, School of Environment and Natural Resources, Ohio State University.
Current Position: GRIL Post-doctoral Fellow, McGill University

Dr. Felipe Pérez-Jvostov - CREATE and CICADA Postdoctoral Fellow on Biodiversity, Ecosystem Services and Sustainability, and Program Coordinator; Co-supervised by Dr. Andrew Hendry
Topic: Adaptation of fishes to reservoirs in Panama, long-term dynamics of African freshwaters

PhD


Kerri Ackerly, Ph.D. in Biology, Department of Biology, McGill University, co-supervised by Dr. R. Krahe.
Dissertation Title: Impacts of Physiologically Challenging Environmental Conditions on Performance in Weakly Electric Elephant-nose Fishes. (2017).
Current Position: Special Assistant Professor, Department of Biology, Hofstra University, N.Y., USA.

Vincent Fugere, Ph.D. in Biology, Department of Biology, McGill University.
Dissertation Title: Impacts of Land Use on Ugandan Rainforest Streams: From Fish Physiology to Ecosystem Functioning. (2016).
Current Position: Postdoctoral fellow, Université du Québec à Montréal and McGill University, Montreal, Quebec, Canada.

Sr. Jane Yatuha, Ph.D. in Biology, Bunda College of Agriculture, University of Malawi (external
supervisor).
Dissertation Title: Food, Feeding Habits and Aspects of Reproductive Biology of Clarias
liocephalu
s, a Potential Culture Species for Small Holder Fish Farms in South-western Uganda
(2015).
Current Position: Lecturer, Department of Biology, Mbarara University of Science and Technology, Mbarara, Uganda.

Diana Sharpe, Ph.D. in Biology, Department of Biology, McGill University.
Dissertation Title: Phenotypic Response to Anthropogenic Stressors in the African Cyprinid
Rastrineobola argentea. (2012).
Current Position: BESS Postdoctoral Fellow, Redpath Museum, McGill University.

Nkalubo Winnie Nalukenge, Ph.D. in Zoology, Department of Zoology, Makerere
University, Uganda.
Dissertation Title: Life History Traits and Growth of Nile perch, Lates niloticus (L.), in
Lake Victoria, Uganda: Implications for Management of the Fishery. (2012) (co-
supervised by Dr. F. Muyodi).
Current Position: Senior Research Scientist, National Fisheries Resources Research Institute, Uganda.

Erika Crispo, Ph.D. in Biology, Department of Biology, McGill University.
Dissertation Title: Interplay among Phenotypic Plasticity, Local Adaptation, and Gene Flow.
(2010) (co-supervised by Dr. A. Hendry).
Assistant Professor, Pace University, N.Y., USA.

Akisoferi Owori-Wadunde, Ph.D. in Zoology, Department of Zoology, Makerere University, Uganda
Dissertation Title: The Feeding Ecology, Ontogeny and Larval Feeding in Labeo victorianus
Boulenger 1901 (Pisces: Cyprinidae). (2009) (co-supervised by Dr. F. Bugenyi).
Senior Research Scientist, Aquaculture Research and Development Centre, Kajjansi Uganda.

Erin Reardon, Ph.D. in Biology, Department of Biology, McGill University.
Dissertation Title: Fish in Extreme Environments: Reproduction and Energetics under Hypoxia.
(2009).
Current Position: Associate Research Fellow, BioScience, University of Exeter

Jackson Efitre, Ph.D. in Zoology, Department of Zoology, University of Florida.
Dissertation Title: Life History Variation in Tilapia Populations within the Crater Lakes of Western
Uganda: The Role of Size-Selective Predation. (2007).
Current Position: Senior Lecturer, Department of Zoology, Entomology and Fisheries Sciences,
Makerere University, Kampala, Uganda.

Aventino Kasangaki, Ph.D. in Zoology, Mbarara University of Science and Technology
Dissertation Title: Fish Fauna of the Bwindi Impenetrable National Park Along a Deforestation
Gradient. (2007) (co-supervised by Dr. J. Balirwa).
Current Position: Senior Lecturer and Head of Department, Busitem University, Bekedea, Uganda.

Gladys Namuswe Bwanika, Ph.D. in Zoology, Department of Zoology, Makerere University.
Dissertation Title: Feeding Ecology and Bioenergetics of Nile Tilapia. (2005) (co-supervised by Dr. Y. Kizito).
Current Position: Senior Lecturer, Department of Zoology, Entomology and Fisheries Sciences,
Makerere University, Uganda.

Cindy Timmerman, Ph.D. in Zoology, Department of Zoology, University of Florida.
Dissertation Title: An Integrative Study of Response to Hypoxia in the Live-bearing Sailfin
Molly, Poecilia latipinna (Atherinomorpha; Poeciliidae). (2001).
Current Position: Head of Science Department at Haas Hall Academy, Prairie Grove, Arkansas, USA.

   
Undergraduate SURA Students


Tyler Moulton
, Department of Biology, McGill University
Topic: Effects of Thermal Stress on Signalling in Weakly Electrical Fishes.

Logan Smith, Department of Biology, McGill University
Topic: Colour Variation across Oxygen and Turbidity Gradients in an African Cichlid.

Candidacy Completed


John Olowo
, (deceased, June 2001) - Department of Zoology, University of Florida

MSc  


Tyler Moulton – M.Sc. in Biology, McGill University
Thesis title: Keeping a Finger on the Pulse of East African Weakly Electric Fishes: Ecology and Hypoxia Tolerance of Mormyrids in Lake Nabugabo, Uganda. (2016).
Current Position: Adjunct Lecturer at State University of New York College at Cortland,
Cortland, New York

Emmanuelle Chretien – M.Sc. in Biology, McGill University.
Thesis title: Habitat Selection and Body Size as Potential Drivers of Intraspecific Variation in Thermal Tolerance of Nile perch (Lates niloticus L.). (2015).
Current Position: Ph.D. candidate, Département de sciences biologiques, Université de Montréal, Montreal, Canada.

Catherine Baltazar – M.Sc. in Biology, McGill University.
Thesis title: Fitness Consequences of Divergent Oxygen Environments in a Widespread African Cyprinid (2015).
Current Position: Chargée de projets à l'OBV des rivières Rouge, Petite nation et Saumon, Quebec, Canada.

Laura McDonnell – M.Sc. in Biology, McGill University.
Thesis title: Effects of Elevated Temperature on Metabolic Performance and Thermal
Tolerance of a Widespread African Cichlid. (2015).
Current Position: Ph.D. at the University of Miami.

Jackson Baguma – M.Sc. in Biology, Makerere University, Uganda, co-supervised by Dr. G.
Bwanika.
Thesis Title: Bioenergetics of Nile perch, Lates niloticus, in inshore habitats of Lake Nabugabo, Uganda. (2014).
Current Position: Regional Fisheries Officer, Uganda.

Dalal Hanna – M.Sc. in Biology, McGill University.
Thesis Title: Mercury in African Freshwater Fishes: A Continent-wide Review and a Case Study of Nile perch (Lates niloticus). (2014).
Current Positon: Ph.D. student, Department of Natural Resource Science McGill University, Montreal, Canada.

Elizabeth Nyboer – M.Sc. in Biology, McGill University.
Thesis Title: Movement, Home range, and Ecological Divergence in the Commercially Fished Nile perch in Lake Nabugabo, Uganda. (2012).
Current Position: Ph.D. candidate, McGill University, Montreal, Canada.

Andrea Reid – M.Sc. in Biology, McGill University.
Thesis Title: Predicting Peak Refugia for Mitigating Impacts of Invasive Predatory Fishes. (2012) (co-supervised by Dr. A. Ricciardi).
Current Position: Ph.D. candidate, Carlton University, Ottawa, Canada.

Georgia McNeil – M.Sc. in Biology, McGill University. (2012).
Thesis Title: Hypoxia, Carotenoids, and Colour Expression in the Widespread African Cichlid Fish Pseudocrenilabrus multicolor victoriae. (2012).

Caitlin Friesen – M.Sc. in Biology, McGill University.
Thesis Title: The Effect of Hypoxia on Reproductive Processes in the African cichlid
Pseudocrenilabrus multicolor victoriae. (2011) (co-supervised by Dr. Nadia Aubin-Horth).
Current Position: Ph.D. candidate, University of Texas, Austin, USA.

Sandra Binning – M.Sc. in Biology, McGill University.
Thesis Title: Specialized Morphology for a Generalist Diet: Spatial and Seasonal Surveys Reveal Liem’s Paradox in an African Cichlid Fish. (2008).
Current Position: Assistant Professor. Département de sciences biologiques, Université de Montréal, Montreal, Canada.

Jaclyn Paterson – M.Sc. in Biology, McGill University.
Thesis Title: Response of an Introduced Aquatic Predator, the Nile Perch, to Environmental Change. (2008).
Current Position: Policy Analyst, Health Canada’s Climate Change and health Office, Environment and Climate Change Canada.

Ashley Seifert – M.S. in Zoology, University of Florida.
Thesis Title: Respiratory Allocation and Resting Rate of Metabolism in the African Lungfish Protopterus aethiopicus. (2004).
Current Position: Assistant Professor, University of Kentucky, Kentucky, USA.

Jennifer Davies – M.A. in Latin American Studies, University of Florida.
Thesis Title: Population Ecology of the Vicuna (Vicugna vicugna) at the Salinas y Aguada Blanca National Reserve, Arequipa, Peru: Baseline Data for Sustainable Management. (2003) (co-supervised).
Current Position: Environmental Consultant.

Christine K. Apodaca – M.S. in Zoology, Department of Zoology, University of Florida.
Thesis Title: Damselflies in Extreme Environments: Distribution and Ecophysiology of Proishnura subfurcatum. (2003).
Current Position: Occupational Therapy

Sarah Schaack – M.S. in Zoology, Department of Zoology, University of Florida
Thesis Title: Functional Morphology and Foraging Ecology of the African Cyprinid,
Barbus neumayeri: Implications for Faunal Diversification. (2002).
Current Position: Associate Professor, Biology, Reed College, Portland, Oregon.

April Randle – M.S. in Zoology, Department of Zoology, University of Florida
Thesis Title: Respiratory Ecology of the Air-breathing Anabantoid Ctenopoma muriei. (2001).
Current Position: Assistant Professor, University of San Francisco, San Francisco, USA.

Efitre Jackson - M.S. in Zoology, Department of Zoology, Makerere University, Uganda.
Thesis Title: Species Composition, Relative Abundance, and Distribution of Benthic
Macroinvertebrates in Lake Nabugabo, Uganda. (1999) (co-supervised by Dr. B. Makanga).
Current Position: Senior Lecturer, Department of Zoology, Entomology and Fisheries Sciences,
Makerere University, Kampala, Uganda.

John Olowo - M.S. in Zoology, Department of Zoology, University of Florida.
Thesis Title: The Impact of the Introduced Nile perch (Lates niloticus) on the Foraging
Ecology of Non-cichlid Predators in the Lake Victoria basin. (1998). Deceased.

Pamela Schofield - M.S. in Zoology, Department of Zoology, University of Florida.
Thesis Title: Feeding Ecology of the Introduced Nile Perch (Lates niloticus) in lake
Nabugabo, Uganda: Implications for Conservation of the Indigenous Fauna. (1997).
Current Position: Research Fishery Biology, USGS, Gainseville, Florida, USA.

Amanda E. Rosenberger - M.S. in Zoology, Department of Zoology, University of Florida.
Thesis Title: Potential of Wetland Tributaries as Refugia for Endangered Fishes from
Nonnative Predators: A Case Study of Lake Nabugabo, Uganda. (1997).
Current Position: Assistant Unit Leader, U.S Geological Survey, Tennessee Cooperative Fishery
Research Unit, Department of Biology, Tennessee Tech University, Cookeville, Tennessee, USA.

Deborah Bayster - M.S. in Zoology, Department of Zoology, University of Florida.
Thesis Title: Respiratory Ecology of Fishes in a Florida Spring. (1996).

Undergraduate Honors Theses – McGill University (2004-present)


Tristan Kosciuch - Predicting Changes in the Consumption of the Invasive Nile perch in the Face of
Climate Warming: A Bioenergetics Approach (2018).

Sarah Gravel - Phenotypic Plasticity in the Heart and Brain of the African Cichlid Fish
Pseudocrenilabrus multicolor victoriae in Response to Dual Stessors (2018).

Luisa Sarmiento Trujillo – Effects of Long-term Acclimation to Elevated Water Temperatures on Gill, Brain, and Heart Size in Two Commercially Important Tropical Freshwater Fishes. (2016).

Lindsay Potts - Persisting in the Face of Invasive Predators: Testing for Evidence of Predator-induced Morphological Change in a Native African Cichlid (2016).

Tian Rui Zhang - The Effect of Acute Hypoxia on Fast-Starting Swimming and EOD rate in a Weakly Electric Fish (2015) (co-supervised by Dr. R. Krahe).

Emma Luker - Distribution of Haplochromine Cichlids in Lake Nabugabo, Uganda: Rarity, Refugia, and Resurgence (2014).

Tyler Moulton - Distribution of Mormyrid Fishes in Lake Nabugabo, Uganda, 50 Years After
the Introduction of the Nile Perch. (2013) (co-supervised by Dr. R. Krahe).

Charde Morgan - A Fishery on the Edge: Fishing Trends and Stocks in Lake Nabugabo, East Africa. (2011, McGill School of Environment).

Amalia Aldredge – Behaviour of an African Cichlid from Divergent Oxygen Environment.s (2010).

Kiyoko Gotanda – The Effects of Hypoxia on the Critical Swimming Speed of an African Cichlid. (2009).

Kate Hudson – Interpopulational Variation in Critical Swimiming Speed and Morphology in Threespine Stickleback, Gasterosteus aculeatus. (2006) (co-supervised by Dr. A. Hendry).