Laforest, Brandon

  • B. Sc. (Honours) Wildlife Biology, University of Guelph (2009)
  • M. Sc. Animal Nutrition and Metabolism, University of Guelph (2010)


An Integrative Approach to Polar Bear (Ursus maritimus) Management: Employing Fatty Acid Analysis, Movement Patterns, and Traditional Ecological Knowl

Year Entered: 2010

Dissertation Title

An integrative analysis of polar bear foraging: biochemical, spatial, and traditional knowledge approaches to polar bears in Southern Hudson Bay

Comprehensive Areas

  • Food web ecology
  • Traditional Ecological Knowledge and Wildlife Management in Canada's North

Advisory Comittee

  • Dr. Gail Fraser
  • Dr. Gregory Thiemann
  • Dr. Martyn Obbard (Trent/Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources)


  • Laforest, B.J., Winegardner, A.K., Zaheer, O.A., Jeffery, N.W., Boyle, E.E., Adamowicz, S.J. (2013) Insights into Biodiversity Sampling Strategies for Freshwater Microinvertebrate Faunas through Bioblitz Campaigns and DNA Barcoding. BMC Ecology 13:13 doi:10.1186/1472-6785-13-13.

Paper Presentations

  • 2013  Congress of the Humanities and Social Sciences: Environmental Studies Association of Canada. Collaborative Mapping of Polar Bears in James Bay: Towards the Integration of Traditional Ecological Knowledge and Science. Victoria, British Columbia.   
  • 2012 York University Northern Studies Symposium. Mapping Traditional Ecological Knowledge: Insights into Polar Bear Status in James Bay. Toronto, Ontario.  
  • 2012 Association of Canadian Universities for Northern Studies Student Conference. Polar bear status in James Bay: Insights from Traditional Ecological Knowledge. Val d’Or, Québec.  
  • 2011 Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA) Annual Meeting. Thermoregulation in the Asian Elephant; A Novel Demonstration of the Trunk as a Thermoregulatory Site. Atlanta, Georgia, USA. 
  • 2011 Canadian Society of Zoologists 50th Anniversary Meeting. Thermoregulation in the Asian elephant (Elephas maximus); A Novel Demonstration of the Trunk as a Thermoregulatory Site. Ottawa, Ontario

University Service

  • President’s Advisory Committee on Northern Studies, York University, 2012 - Present.
  • Faculty Appointment Advisory Committee, York University, 2011
  • Faculty Council, Faculty of Environmental Studies, York University, 2010 - 2012


Reseach Funding

  • Wildlife Conservation Society Canada, W. Garfield Weston Graduate Fellowship 
  • Canadian Wildlife Federation, Endangered Species Fund (co-applicant) 
  • Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources, Species at Risk Research Fund for Ontario (co-applicant) 
  • Aboriginal Affairs and Northern Development Canada, Northern Studies Training Program  
  • Churchill Northern Studies Centre, Northern Research Fund


  • 2013 W. Garfield Weston Award for Northern Research (Doctoral) 
  • 2013 Ontario Graduate Scholarship (declined) 
  • 2011 John A. Livingston Ecological Conscience and Nature Advocacy Award 
  • 2010 Adrienne Pocock Memorial Award 
  • 2010 University of Guelph Ontario Agricultural College Dean’s Award