Myriam Lacharité, Postdoctoral Fellow

Applied Research, Nova Scotia Community College (Ivany Campus)

Bio: Myriam is a biological oceanographer and ecologist, with experience in deep-water surveys using optical imagery, computer programming, statistical analysis, and GIS mapping. Her interests include spatial ecology, habitat modelling, statistics, seafloor mapping, and ocean technology. She graduated with a Ph.D. in oceanography from Dalhousie University in 2016.

Supervisor: Dr. Craig Brown

Institution: Applied Research, Nova Scotia Community College (Ivany Campus)

Start to Finish: 09/2016 to 08/2018

CHONe Project: 1.2.5 Fine-scale MPA mapping: Assessing the application of Landscape Ecology concepts for improved environmental monitoring design and management of MPAs

Project Title: Using the benthoscape approach to monitor benthic biological communities within MPAs in Atlantic Canada

Project Description:

Benthic habitat mapping aims to identify ‘benthoscapes’, i.e. discrete regions of the seafloor with distinct biophysical characteristics, such as substrate type and conspicuous fauna. In this project, I examine how this approach can be used to inform monitoring activities within MPAs.

The specific project aims are:

  1. Building benthoscape maps of St. Ann’s Bank – a MPA off the coast of Cape Breton, Nova Scotia – and the Laurentian Channel Area of Interest
  2. Using landscape ecology concepts, determining how faunal communities on the seafloor respond to patterns in habitats at broader spatial scale, and how to use to such maps to monitor MPAs
  3. Examine how the elaboration of benthoscape maps can inform the monitoring of biodiversity within MPAs

This project addresses the broader CHONe goal of supporting DFO marine spatial planning in Atlantic Canada.