Drawing of zebra mussel with byssal threads on the posterior end. Photo credit: GLER/NOAA

Zebra mussel PhD at Simon Fraser University

Drawing of zebra mussel with byssal threads on the posterior end. Photo credit: GLER/NOAA

Zebra mussel PhD at Simon Fraser University

I am set to join the labs of Dr. Isabelle Côté and Dr. Jonathan Moore at Simon Fraser University beginning this May, as part of the larger Earth2Ocean Group in the Department of Biological Sciences. I will be working on a project with the aim of bettering our understanding of the risks and potential impacts of invasion by non-native dreissenid mussels, namely zebra and quagga mussels. The project will develop models of habitat suitability and connectivity for zebra and quagga mussels in British Columbia as well as food web models in order to evaluate the likely progression of invasions in British Columbia as well as predict the potential impacts on lake and river ecosystems throughout the province.

I am extremely excited to be a part of this important project, as invasion by dreissenid mussels is one of the greatest threats facing freshwater ecosystems, both here in British Columbia and beyond. It is also the perfect opportunity to take the skills and experience I’ve gained through the MGEM program and apply them towards a problem that is both pressing and scientifically interesting.

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Steven Brownlee
Student in the Master of Geomatics for Environmental Management program