James Roth
Photo of James Roth

Associate Professor

Office 418 Bio-Sci Bldg.
(204) 272-1677

My research focuses on the interactions between predators and prey and their impact on population dynamics and food web structure. As predators play an important role in regulating ecosystems and sustaining biodiversity, most of my research on trophic interactions is significant not only academically, but also has important implications for conservation.

Members of my lab investigate direct and indirect interactions among species within food webs using a combination of field methods (e.g., mark-recapture, surveys, behavioral observation) and lab techniques (e.g., stable isotope analysis, enzyme immunoassay).

Research Interests

Biodiversity, Ecology and Environment, Food web dynamics, predator-prey interactions, population cycles, spatial subsidies and indirect effects in food webs, applications of stable isotope analysis

Recent Publications

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Courses taught

BIOL 3318 Boreal Ecology (winter)

BIOL 3350 Methods of Data Collection & Analysis in Ecology (fall)

BIOL 4800 Arctic Field Ecology (summer)

Graduate Students

Christa (Szumski) Burstahler, PhD (in progress) Variation in facultative diet specialization of Canada lynx (co-supervised with D Murray)

Megan Dudenhoeffer, MSc (in progress) Food web dynamics and landscape use of Arctic and red foxes on the tundra

Jessica Lang, MSc (in progress) Impacts of red fox and Arctic fox denning activities in the tundra-forest ecozone (co-supervised with J Markham)

Brendan Malley, MSc (in progress) Interactions among Arctic freshwater fish (co-supervised with R Tallman)

Kyle Ritchie, MSc (in progress) Ringed seal trends in abundance inferred from genetics (co-supervised with S Petersen)

Chloe Warret Rodrigues, PhD (in progress) Interactions between red foxes and Arctic foxes on the southern Arctic tundra

Emily Choy, PhD (2017) The interconnectedness of diet, physiology, and physical condition in beluga whales as a sentinel species for environmental change in the Beaufort Sea ecosystem. University of Manitoba (co-supervised with L Loseto). Choy website

Jackie Verstege, MSc (2016) Fox and lemming responses to climate and snow conditions at the Arctic’s edge. University of Manitoba.

Michelle Ewacha, MSc (2016) Stress response of boreal woodland caribou, moose, and wolves to disturbance in eastern Manitoba. University of Manitoba.

Tazarve Gharajehdaghipoor, MSc (2015) Arctic foxes as ecosystem engineers: benefits to vegetation and collared lemmings through nutrient deposition. University of Manitoba.

Laura Murray, MSc (2015) Effect of nanosilver particles on metabolism and cortisol release in rainbow trout. University of Manitoba (co-supervised with M Rennie).

Danielle Mocker, MSc (2015) Diet reconstruction of wolves following a decline in Manitoba moose populations. University of Manitoba.

Andrew Coulson, MSc (2014) Agricultural subsidies affect isotopic niche size in elk and white-tailed deer. University of Manitoba.

Marci Trana, MSc (2014) Variation in blubber cortisol as a measure of stress in beluga whales of the Canadian Arctic. University of Manitoba. Trana website

Ryan McDonald, MSc (2013) Impact of prey availability and diet on stress in arctic foxes. University of Manitoba.

Olwyn Friesen, MSc (2013) Ecology of parasites in northern canids: impacts of age, sex, behavior, life history, and diet. University of Manitoba. Friesen website

Justin Brown, MS (2009) Factors affecting marine turtle egg predation by raccoons and ghost crabs on Canaveral National Seashore. University of Central Florida (co-advised with J Waterman).

Carlos Anderson, MS (2007) Individual identification of polar bears by whisker spot patterns. University of Central Florida (co-advised with J Waterman).

Brandon Barton, MS (2005) Cascading effects of predator removal on the ecology of sea turtle nesting beaches. University of Central Florida.

Laura Plog, MS (2004) Sea turtle nutrient input to dune vegetation: a stable isotope analysis. University of Central Florida (co-advised with J Weishampel).

Undergraduate Honours Students

Dominik Simard, BEnvSc Honours (in progress) Assessing body condition of moose killed by gray wolves in southern Manitoba (co-supervised with V Harriman)

Taylor Naaykens, BSc Honours (2016) Grey wolf selection for moose calves and factors influencing prey species consumption in southeastern Manitoba

Shu ting Zhao, BSc Honours (2016) Arctic foxes subsidize other wildlife through ecosystem engineering on the Canadian tundra

Alyssa Eby, BSc Honours (2015) Temporal variation of isotopic niche breadth and overlap between arctic foxes and red foxes at the edge of the Arctic

Paul Faford, BSc Honours (2015) Arctic foxes engineer the beach ridge plant community through nutrient deposition in the Canadian subarctic

Arielle Nagy, BSc Honours (2015) Effects of elk management on wolf diets in Riding Mountain National Park

Tera Edkins, BSc Honours (2014) The effects of a pulsed resource on the dietary niche of a seed predator and the consumption of alternative prey

Important Dates

December 11 – December 21: Fall Term Exam Period (includes tests and midterm exams for Fall/Winter Term classes)

December 22 – January 1: Winter Holiday (University Closed)

Upcoming Seminars

General seminar: Karen Dunmall PhD Oral Defense: “Pacific salmon in the Canadian Arctic Indicators of Change” — Tuesday, December 19 at 10 a.m., 304 Biological Sciences.

General seminar: Matthew Doering, PhD Proposal: “Adding spice to fungicides: Discovery of novel genes operating in specialised metabolite biosynthesis in Piper spp. (Piperaceae)” — Wednesday, December 20 at 11 a.m., 304 Biological Sciences.

General seminar: Jared Field, MSc Defense: “Alternative splicing of Bnip3 modulates calcium signals to prevent mitochondrail-dependent cell death and regulate gene expression” — Wednesday, December 20 at 1 p.m., 201 BSB.