BIOL 465 (Fall)

Conservation Biology

D. Green (Coordinator)
Redpath Museum
(514) 398-4088
3 credits (3-0-6)
BIOL 215 or both ENVR 200 and ENVR 202 (or equivalents)
Conservation biology deals with the impoverishment of biodiversity through human related activities.  As such, students in this course will be exposed to the pattern of biological processes involved in changes in biodiversity, and current examples of biodiversity loss.  The course will focus on the key biological concepts that relate to conservation biology. The course will define diversity, review how diversity is lost and consider important genetic and demographic attributes of populations that make them more or less susceptible to extinctions. The structure and stability of multi-species communities, including the effects of the removal or introduction of species, and other perturbations upon community dynamics will be taught. Specific issues as population viability analysis, fragmented habitats, the effect of introduced or exotic species, and restoration ecology will be presented.  Each of these biological topics will be discussed to the extent that they relate to conservation and help in formulating solutions towards reducing the loss of biodiversity. The course will also examine the importance of non-biological disciplines such as ethics, anthropology and history on conservation action. Guest speakers will cover complementary issues.
Selected journal articles, review papers. The text “Conservation Biology for All” (Sodhi & Ehrlich, editors), Oxford University Press, 2011, is suggested but not required.
Two 1.5 hour lectures per week.

Two individual assignments;  one group project, final exam.

Last update: March 22, 2017

McGill University values academic integrity. Therefore all students must understand the meaning and consequences of cheating, plagiarism and other academic offences under the Code of Student Conduct and Disciplinary Procedures (see for more information).