Brie A. Edwards

Linking aquatic imperilment to environmental change

C.V.

Education and Awards

Postdoctoral Fellow: Freshwater Conservation,     2013-2016

Wildlife Conservation Society Canada, Toronto, ON.                                        

· Supervisors: Dr. Constance O’Connor and Dr. Jenni McDermid

   Jul 2014 – Sept 2015 · Parental leave of absence

Doctorate of Science: Ecology and Evolutionary Biology,     2007-2013

University of Toronto, Toronto, ON.                                        

· Supervisors: Professors Don Jackson (UofT) and Keith Somers (OMOE, UofT)

   2007 · Ontario Ministry of Environment Best in Science Research Award, $24,000 over 2 years

   2009 · Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council PGS-D Award, $63,000 over 3 years

   Jul 2011 – Apr 2012 · Parental leave of absence

Honours Bachelor of Science: Environmental Sciences, Ecology (Co-op),     2002-2006

University of Guelph, Guelph, ON.  

   2002-2006 · Dean’s Honours List

   2003-2006 · OUA Academic Achievement Awards for Varsity Rowing

   2003 · Canada Millennium Bursary, $3000                                                                                

   2002 · Academic excellence/Accessibility Scholarship, $2000/yr for years 2, 3 & 4

   2002 · Ontario Provincial Aiming for the Top Tuition Scholarship, $3500/yr for 4 years

   2002 · Entrance Scholarship, $3000

Publications  

Southee, F.M., Edwards, B.A., Chetkiewicz, C.-L., and C. O’Connor. In press. Freshwater conservation planning in the far north of Ontario: identifying priority watersheds for the conservation of fish biodiversity in an intact landscape. FACETS

Hall, L.J., Emilson, E.J.S., Edwards, B.A., Watmough, S.A. 2020. Patterns and trends in lake concentrations of dissolved organic carbon in a landscape recovering from environmental degradation and widespread acidification. Science of the Total Environment https://doi.org/10.1016/j.scitotenv.2020.142679

Meyer-Jacob, C., Labaj, A., Edwards, B.A., Keller, W.(B.), Cumming, B., Paterson, A., and J. Smol. 2020. Re-browning of Sudbury (Ontario, Canada) lakes now approaches pre-acidification lake-water dissolved organic carbon levels. Science of the Total Environment 725: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.scitotenv.2020.138347 

Keller, W. (Bill), Heneberry, J., and B.A. Edwards. 2019. Recovery of acidified Sudbury, Ontario, Canada, lakes: a multi-decade synthesis and update. Environmental Reviews 27: 1-16

Edwards, B.A., F.M. Southee, and J.L. McDerimid. 2016. Using climate and a minimum set of local characteristics to predict the future distributions of freshwater fish in Ontario, Canada, at the lake-scale. Global Ecology and Conservation 8: 71-84.

Edwards, B.A., D.A. Jackson, and K.M. Somers. 2016. Effects of declining calcium availability on the survival, growth, and calcium content of freshwater crayfish (Orconectes virilis). Freshwater Biology 61(6): 914-922.

Edwards, B.A., D.A. Jackson, and K.M. Somers. 2015. Evaluating the effect of lake calcium concentration on the acquisition of carapace calcium by freshwater crayfish. Hydrobiologia 744(1): 91-100.

Edwards, B.A., D.A. Jackson, and K.M. Somers. 2014. Linking temporal changes in crayfish communities to environmental changes in boreal Shield lakes in south-central Ontario. Can. J. Fish. Aquat. Sci. 71(1): 21-30.

Edwards, B.A., V.R.E. Lewis, D.A. Jackson, and F.H. Rodd. 2013. Interactive effects of calcium decline and predation risk on the potential northward range expansion of the rusty crayfish, Orconectes rusticus. Canadian Journal of Zoology 91(5): 328-337.

Scott, C.E., K.M. Alofs, and B.A. Edwards. 2011. Putting dark diversity in the spotlight. Trends in Ecology and Evolution 26(6): 263-264.

Edwards, B.A., D.A. Jackson, and K.M. Somers. 2009. Multispecies crayfish declines in lakes: implications for species distributions and richness. Journal of the North American Benthological Society 28(3): 719-732.

Presentations

Edwards, B.A., K.M. Somers and R.A. Reid, Investigation of the apparent decrease in crayfish relative abundance in Ontario’s inland lakes and the possible correlation between this decline and decreasing calcium concentrations, Poster presentation, Canadian Conference for Fisheries Research, Montreal, Jan 4th – 6th 2007.

Edwards, B.A., K.M. Somers and R.A. Reid, Investigation of the apparent decrease in crayfish relative abundance in Ontario’s inland lakes and the possible correlation between this decline and decreasing calcium concentrations, Poster presentation, Annual meeting of the Canadian Society for Ecology and Evolution, Toronto, May 17th-20th 2007.

Edwards. B.A., D. A. Jackson and K. M. Somers, Quantifying crayfish declines in Central Ontario and investigating a possible link to decreasing lake calcium. Oral presentation, First Annual Symposium for Ontario Invertebrate Awareness, Toronto Zoo, Toronto, Nov 5th 2007.

Edwards, B.A., D.A. Jackson and K.M. Somers, Quantifying long term decreases in the abundance of crayfish populations across central-Ontario and investigating potential links to a changing environment, Oral presentation, Annual meeting of the North American Benthological Society, Salt Lake City, May 24th – 30th 2008.

Edwards, B.A., D.A. Jackson and K.M. Somers, Are crayfish in a pinch: investigating the influence of multiple stressors in crayfish decline, Oral presentation, Annual meeting of the American Fisheries Society, Ottawa, Aug 18th – 23rd 2008.

Edwards, B.A., D.A. Jackson and K.M. Somers, Investigating crayfish community ecology and the influence of multiple stressors in crayfish decline, Oral presentation, Canadian Conference for Fisheries Research, Ottawa, Jan 9th – 11th 2009.

Edwards, B.A., R.A. Reid, K.M. Somers and J.A. Rusak. Is crayfish diversity and abundance declining in south-central Ontario lakes? Poseter presentation, U-Links: Celebration of Research Symposium, Haliburton, Mar 19th 2009.

Edwards, B.A. Community approaches and concepts in the context of conservation, Oral presentation, Annual Colloquium of the Department of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, University of Toronto, Toronto, Apr 17th – 18th 2009.

Edwards, B.A., D.A. Jackson and K.M. Somers, Understanding crayfish community ecology in the context of local and regional environmental change, Oral presentation, Annual meeting of the North American Benthological Society, Grand Rapids, May 17th – 22nd 2009.

Edwards, B.A., D.A. Jackson and K.M. Somers, Investigating the potential impacts of declining lake Ca on freshwater Shield crayfish, Oral presentation, Annual meeting of the North American Benthological Society, Sante Fe, June 6th – 11th 2010.

Edwards, B.A., D.A. Jackson, K.M. Somers, and V.R.E. Lewis. Investigations into the effects of declining calcium on freshwater crayfish and potential interactions with multiple additional stressors, Oral presentation, Canadian Conference for Fisheries Research, Toronto, Jan 6th – 8th 2011.

Edwards, B.A., D.A. Jackson and K.M. Somers. The ecology of freshwater crayfish in Ontario lakes, and the search for links between decline and environmental stressors such as calcium loss, Oral presentation, Annual meeting of the Society for Freshwater Sciences, Louisville, May 20th – 24th 2012.

Edwards, B.A., V.W.R Lewis, D.A. Jackson and F.H. Rodd. Assessing the effect of calcium availability on the anti-predator behaviour of an invasive crayfish, Orconectes rusticus, Poster presentation, Annual meeting of the Society for Freshwater Sciences, Louisville, May 20th – 24th 2012.

Edwards, B.A., V.W.R Lewis, D.A. Jackson and F.H. Rodd. Interactive effects of calcium decline and predation risk on the potential for a northward range expansion of the rusty crayfish, Orconectes rusticus, Oral presentation, Canadian Conference for Fisheries Research, Windsor, Jan 3rd – 5th 2013.

Edwards, B.A., V.W.R Lewis, D.A. Jackson and F.H. Rodd. Environmental stress, behaviour and range expansion: examining the potential for calcium decline to limit rusty crayfish invasions, Oral presentation, Canadian Society for Ecology and Evolution, Kelowna, May 12th – 15th 2013.

Edwards, B.A., J. McDermid and F.M. Southee. Incorporating waterbody characteristics to improve predictions of fish distributions in Northern Ontario in the face of climate change, Poster presentation, Canadian Society for Ecology and Evolution, Montreal, May 25th – 30th 2014.

Edwards, B.A., F.M. Southee and C. O’Connor. Benthic Community Integrity and Cumulative Impacts Assessments of Aquatic Ecosystems in Ontario’s Far North, Oral presentation, North American Congress for Conservation Biology, Madison Wisconsin, July 17th – 22nd 2016.

Edwards, B.A., O’Connor, C., Southee, M., Strimas-Mackey, M., Chetkiewicz, C. Freshwater conservation planning in an intact landscape. Oral presentation, Canadian Society for Ecology and Evolution, Victoria, May 7th – 11th 2017.

Bourne, V., Bailey, J., Somers, K., Edwards, B., Gunn, J., and Todd, A. Seasonable variability of stream benthic macroinvertebrate communities in the Ring of Fire region of northern Ontario: Implications for bioassessment. Oral presentation, ASLO, June 2018

Dawson, J., Edwards, B.A., Gunn, J., McCann, K., Guzzo, M. Biological recovery across a gradient of catchment reclamation intensity in the heavily smelter-damaged lakes of Sudbury, Ontario. Poster presentation, Latornell Conservation Symposium, Alliston, Nov 13th – 15th 2018.

Edwards, B.A. Regional inland lake monitoring in Northern Ontario: Sudbury and the Ring of Fire. Invited oral presentation, Environment Canada CCAP Inland Lake Monitoring Network, December 3rd – 5th 2018.

Teaching Experience

Quantitative Biological Research BIOL5000, Laurentian University and UOIT         Winter 2019

· Co-taught with Professor Robert Bailey.

Community Ecology EEB321, University of Toronto        Fall 2012

· Prepared and presented a guest lecture on an emerging topic in community ecology, Community Phylogenetics, and assigned accompanying readings.

Honours Research Course EEB498, University of Toronto        2010/2011

· Co-supervised 4th Year student, Vern Lewis, along with Professors Don Jackson and Helen Rodd.  Advised Vern in the development of his research objectives, experimental design, and analytical approaches, and aided in the evaluation of his literature review and final report. Vern’s final poster presentation for the juried 498 contest won first prize in the ‘behaviour’ category. This work has culminated in a co-authored manuscript, which has been published (see above).

Teaching Assistant Experience

Community Ecology EEB321, University of Toronto       Fall 2009, 2010, 2012

· Instructed weekly lab sessions, including the preparation of lectures, the coordination of group discussions, one-on-one consultation with students outside of the lab, facilitating and overseeing the collection of field data, and the grading of assignments, exams, paper critiques and research papers.

Population Ecology EEB319, University of Toronto      Spring 2007 – 2009, 2011 – 2013

· Instructed weekly lab sessions, including the preparation of lectures, the coordination of group discussions, one-on-one consultation with students outside of the lab, and the grading of formal lab reports and group presentations.

Organisms in their Environment BIO150, University of Toronto       Fall 2007 – 2009, Summer 2008

· Instructed weekly lab sessions, including the preparation of lectures, the coordination of group discussions, and the grading of quizzes, research papers and group presentations.

Human Interactions Z00200, University of Toronto      Spring 2007

· Responsible for grading term-papers and essay-style exams, while providing constructive feedback.

Research Experience

Research Scientist, Ontario Ministry of the Environment, Conservation and Parks       2017 – present 

· Oversight of inland freshwater research and monitoring programs in Northern Ontario.

· Parental leave of absence, Dec 2017 – Oct 2018

Adjunct Professor, Biology Department, Laurentian University       2017 – present 

· Co-supervision of Gruaduate and Undergradutate student research.

· Initiation and facilitation of reading and discussion group for topics in aquatic ecology.

Conservation Research Associate, Wildlife Conservation Society of Canada       2017 

· Developed approaches for spatial conservation planning for the protection of freshwater biodiversity and aquatic ecosystem services across the largely intact watersheds of Ontario’s Far North.

· Responsible for the supervision of a MITACS postdoctoral fellow with WCSC and the University of Guelph.

Post-Doctoral Fellow, Wildlife Conservation Society of Canada       2013 – 2016

· Conducted a modeling study to predict the future distributions of focal native cold- and cool-water fishes, as well as warm-water invasive species, across Ontario at the lake-scale, in order to inform conservation planning and adaptive management.

· Developed a framework to implement and test a modeling approach for aquatic cumulative effects assessments in Northern Ontario watersheds using benthic community integrity metrics.

· Parental leave of absence, July 2014 – August 2015.

Research Assistant, Wildlife Conservation Society of Canada       2013 

· Worked with the Ontario Northern Boreal Freshwater Fish program to census the current biodiversity of fishes, invertebrates and zooplankton, as well as physical and abiotic characteristics of several lakes in the Ring of Fire region.

· Developed and lead the implementation of a benthic biomonitioring protocol tailored to far north lakes.

Ph.D. Candidate, Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, University of Toronto       2007 – 2013

· Dissertation: “Assessing the influence of regional environmental changes on the Shield crayfish of Central-Ontario”. This body of work identifies long-term declines in crayfish abundance, links temporal changes to ecological aspects and regional environmental stressors, and uses both lab and field studies to look specifically at the effects of regional anthropogenic calcium (Ca) decline on survival, growth, and Ca acquisition.

· Parental leave of absence, Jul 2011 – Apr 2012.

Contract Environmental Effects Monitoring, Ecovision Consultants for DAPP Power Ltd        2010

· Worked with a team of fellow experts in the field of benthic biomonitoring and bioassessment to enumerate and identify invertebrate samples from a site of interest, for the generation of an environmental assessment report.

Benthic Biomonitoring Technician, Ministry of the Environment, Dorset, ON       Summer 2005, 2006

· Coordinated lab efforts and field sampling with a team of scientists and technicians.

· Participated in two major monitoring and research programs, in the areas of stream benthic communities and crayfish population sampling in inland lakes.

· Duties included field sampling and lab processing/identification, data base management, literature research, statistical analysis, report writing and editing.

· Produced an independent research paper documenting long-term changes in Ontario’s native crayfish populations, for the first 36 lakes sampled in an ongoing 100 lake spatial survey.

· These initial results contributed to the design of continuing research in this area, which has become the subject of my current graduate work.

Chemical Analysis Technician, Environment Canada, Etobicoke, ON        Winter 2005

· Contributed to a research project concerning the detection and quantification of drugs, hormones and personal care products in various stages of wastewater treatment.

· Responsibilities included sample reception and preparation, solid phase extraction methods, data management and analysis.

· Produced an independent research paper contrasting different wastewater treatment strategies, in terms of their relative abilities to remove potentially environmentally harmful compounds.

· These findings made an important contribution the achievement of the project objectives.

Chemical Analysis Technician, Ministry of the Environment, Dorset, ON         Summer 2004

· Undertook the field collection and subsequent laboratory analyses of water and foliage samples.

· Duties included proficiency in colourimetric, chromatographic, spectrophotometric, electrochemical, gravimetric and titrametric techniques, as well as statistical analysis.

· Utilized a Laboratory Information Management System (LIMS) to organize and report data.

· Developed and conducted an independent research project and report documenting the accumulation of mercury in the foliage of deciduous trees in central Ontario.

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