Dr. Lisa M. Poirier



Current Students

Neil Thompson


Neil's Ph.D. (NRES), co-supervised with Dr. Kathy Lewis, used tree ring analysis to investigate the historical outbreak regimes of Douglas-fir beetle and western spruce budworm and their relationship to weather and climate. The study was focused on British Columbia's "dry belt" Douglas-fir forests, found in a band between dry bunchgrass and cooler sub-boreal spruce and pine ecosystems. The proximity of these forests to a moisture-limited range boundary (the grassland zone) makes a trend towards a warmer and drier climate particularly important. Neil's study included samples from more than a thousand individual trees and utilized cutting edge techniques in analysis and identification of past events in the tree ring series.

Mirrored scar in wood and bark from failed mass attack in 1990 Douglas-fir beetle outbreak.

(Photo: N. Thompson, 2015)

Ian Higgins


Ianís M.Sc. (NRES) research, co-supervised with Dr. Brent Murray, documented the diversity of ground beetles (Coleoptera: Carabidae) in and near the Chun TíOh Wudujut Provincial Park. This Interior wetbelt forest is located just east of Prince George, BC. Ian sampled using standard pitfall trapping methods in three different disturbance levels of forest. Specimens were identified morphologically at UNBC, and submitted to the Barcode of Life Database (BoLD) project at the University of Guelph, where they contribute to the growing BOLD database. Environmental data were also collected from June to October of 2015. During this time, over 3300 carabids were collected, representing 22 different species.

Past Students

Whitney Swyers


Whitney is a M.Sc (NRES) candidate using tree ring analysis to assess how the radial growth response of overstory and understory Douglas-fir trees differ when defoliated by western spruce budworm. This study will also focus on the difference in response between northern (Williams Lake region) and southern (Kamloops region) ecosystems of BC where cores and cookies will be sampled from numerous Douglas-fir leading sites. No research has quantified the impact of budworm on understory trees, but it is important to understand how future pest disturbances may affect the mid-term timber supply in BC.