Alison Derry

Assistant Professor,
Université du Québec à Montréal

Département de sciences biologiques
141 Avenue du Président-Kennedy Montréal (Québec), Canada H2X 1Y4
Tel: (514) 987-3000 3496
Institution page
Personal page

Ph.D. (2007): Dept. Biology, Queen’s University
M.Sc. (2001): Dept. Biological Sciences, University of Alberta
B.Sc. (1997): University of Guelph


Landscape-level patterns in community and genetic diversity

We have little knowledge of the relationship between landscape-level diversity in populations and communities. This relationship is an important step for understanding how these levels of biological organization interact with one another (eco-evolutionary interactions). My students and I will compare patterns in community and genetic diversity across freshwater landscape gradients in carbon, nutrients and latitude that span regions impacted by agriculture and logging. We will conduct field surveys to compare the spatial distribution of genetic and phenotypic diversity.

Contemporary evolution across landscape gradients

Over the last decade, we have learned that "contemporary evolution" frequently occurs on the same time frame as ecological changes. This shift in how we view evolution in relation to ecology has highlighted the importance of considering evolutionary responses of populations. Genotypic diversity (the variety in the genetic make-up among individuals within a species) is important because it allows greater ability for some individuals within a species to adapt to changes in the environment, and therefore can influence the composition of communities. My students and I conduct laboratory and field experiments to study evolutionary responses to natural and anthropogenic environmental disturbance. We work with zooplankton populations linked by dispersal among heterogeneous habitats across the landscape (metapopulations).

Evolutionary effects on communities and ecosystems

There is increasing evidence that interactions between ecology and evolution are important for the maintenance of biodiversity in communities and for stability and functional resilience in ecosystems. Research in my lab studies ecological consequences of evolutionary diversity on freshwater communities and ecosystem functions, such as productivity and nutrient cycling. We will experimentally test how adaptive diversity can influence competitive interactions in zooplankton metacommunities and trophic cascades in freshwater ecosystems.

QCBS students
Mélia Lagacé, Ph.D.
(Start: 2018, End: 2022)

Other QCBS (co-)supervisor: Dylan Fraser
Thesis title: Ecosystem consequences of fisheries-induced evolution in alpine lakes
Sarah Sanderson, M.Sc.
(Start: 2016)
Other QCBS (co-)supervisor: Andrew Hendry
Thesis title: Limits to adaptation of the exotic round goby at the habitat margin in the Upper St. Lawrence River
Previous students (since 2009)
Anthony Merante, M.Sc.
(Start: 2011, End: 2014)

Other (co-)supervisor: Dr. Michael Arts, Environment Canada
Thesis title: The effects of basal resource manipulation on the nutritional state and fatty acid profiles of freshwater crustacean zooplankton
Personal page
Marilyne Robidoux, M.Sc.
(Start: 2011, End: 2014)

Other (co-)supervisor: Paul del Giorgio, Université du Québec à Montréal
Thesis title: Parallel traits and species selection of freshwater zooplankton populations and communities to increased dissolved organic carbon
Personal page
BIA 1200 - Évolution et sélection naturelle (Fall / Automne)
BIA 1700 - Organismes et environnement (Fall and winter / Automne et hiver)
BIA 1601 - Diversité animale (Fall / Automne)
BIO 9010 - Examen de synthèse (Fall / Automne)
BIO 8850 - Sujets de pointe en écologie (Fall / Automne)

23- Cladoceran diversity dynamics in lakes from a northern mining region: Responses to multiple stressors characterized by alpha and beta diversity
Winegardner A.K., Salter N., Aebischer S., Pienitz R., Derry A.M., Wing B., Beisner B.E., Gregory-Eaves I.
2017 Canadian Journal of Fisheries and Aquatic Sciences (Date Added: 2017-10-07)

22- Climate alters intraspecific variation in copepod effect traits through pond food webs
Charette C., Derry A.M.
2016 Ecology (Date Added: 2017-03-03)

21- Climate alters intraspecific variation in copepod effect traits through pond food webs
Charette,C., Derry,A.M.
2016 Ecology (Date Added: 2017-02-21)

20- The impact of regional landscape context on local maladaptive trait divergence: a field test using freshwater copepod acid tolerance
Negrín Dastis, J.O., Derry, A.M.
2016 Evolutionary Ecology (Date Added: 2016-10-11)

19- Coprolalia as a manifestation of epileptic seizures
Massot-Tarrus, A., Mousavi, S.R., Dove, C., Hayman-Abello S, S., Hayman-Abello, B., Derry, P.A., Diosy, D.C., McLachlan, R.S., Burneo, J.G., Steven, D.A., Mirsattari, S.M.
2016 Epilepsy & Behavior : E&B (Date Added: 2016-10-11)

18- Climate alters intraspecific variation in copepod effect traits through pond food webs
Charette, C., Derry, A.M.
2016 Ecology (Date Added: 2016-05-31)

17- Exploring the contribution of zooplankton and protists to the top-down regulation of freshwater aerobic anoxygenic phototrophic bacteria
Garcia-Chaves, M., Cottrell, M. T., Kirchman, D. L., Derry, A., Bogard M., del Giorgio P.A.
2015 Aquatic Microbial Ecology (Date Added: 2016-06-27)

16- Effects of humic stress on the zooplankton from clear and DOC-rich lakes
Robidoux, M., del Giorgio, P., Derry, A.
2015 Freshwater Biology (Date Added: 2015-07-20)

15- Oxic water column methanogenesis as a major component of aquatic CH4 fluxes
Bogard, M.J., del Giorgio, P.A., Boutet, L., Chaves, M.C.G., Prairie, Y.T., Merante, A., Derry, A.M.
2014 Nature Communications (Date Added: 2016-08-09)

14- Ecology in the age of DNA barcoding: the resource, the promise and the challenges ahead
Joly, Simon, Davies, T. Jonathan, Archambault, Annie, Bruneau, Anne, Derry, Alison, Kembel, Steven W., Peres-Neto, Pedro, Vamosi, Jana, Wheeler, Terry A.
2014 Molecular Ecology Resources (Date Added: 2014-03-04)

13- Possible influences of plasticity and genetic/maternal effects on species coexistence: native_Gammarus fasciatus_facing exotic amphipods
Derry, A.M., Kestrup, Å.M., Hendry, A.P., Pfrender, M.
2013 Functional Ecology (Date Added: 2016-07-14)

12- The recovery of acid-damaged zooplankton communities in Canadian Lakes: the relative importance of abiotic, biotic and spatial variables
Gray, Derek K., Arnott, Shelley E., Shead, Justin A., Derry, Alison M.
2012 Freshwater Biology (Date Added: 2012-09-15)

11- Evolutionary shifts in copepod acid tolerance in an acid-recovering lake indicated by resurrected resting eggs
Derry, A.M., Arnott, S.E., Boag, P.T.
2010 Evolutionary Ecology (Date Added: 2011-04-04)

10- Ecological linkages between community and genetic diversity in zooplankton among boreal shield lakes
Derry, A.M., Arnott, S.E., Shead, J.A., Hebert, P.D.N., Boag, P.T.
2009 Ecology (Date Added: 2011-04-04)

8- Variation in calanoid copepod resting egg abundance among lakes with different acidification histories
Chan, E.M., Derry, A.M., Watson, L.A., Arnott, S.E.
2008 Hydrobiologia (Date Added: 2011-04-04)

7- Zooplankton community response to experimental acidification in boreal shield lakes with different ecological histories
Derry, A.M., Arnott, S.E.
2007 Canadian Journal of Fisheries and Aquatic Sciences (Date Added: 2011-04-04)

6- Adaptive reversals in acid tolerance in copepods from lakes recovering from historical stress
Derry, A.M., Arnott, S.E.
2007 Ecological Applications (Date Added: 2011-04-04)

5- A comparison of zooplankton communities in saline lakewater with variable anion composition
Derry, A.M., Prepas, E.E., Hebert, P.D.N.
2003 Hydrobiologia (Date Added: 2011-04-04)

4- Evolution of rotifers in saline and subsaline lakes: A molecular phylogenetic approach
Derry, A.M., Hebert, P.D.N., Prepas, E.E.
2003 Limnology and Oceanography (Date Added: 2011-04-04)

3- Functional diversity and community structure of microorganisms in rhizosphere and non-rhizosphere Canadian arctic soils
Tam, L., Derry, A.M., Kevan, P.G., Trevors, J.T.
2001 Biodiversity and Conservation (Date Added: 2011-04-04)

2- Soil nutrients and vegetation characteristics of a Dorset/Thule site in the Canadian arctic
Derry, A.M., Kevan, P.G., Rowley, S.D.M.
1999 Arctic (Date Added: 2011-04-04)

1- Functional diversity and community structure of microorganisms in uncontaminated and creosote-contaminated soils as determined by sole-carbon-source-utilization
Derry, A.M., Staddon, W.J., Trevors, J.T.
1998 World Journal of Microbiology and Biotechnology (Date Added: 2011-04-04)

In the media
De minuscules baromètres du climat dans les lacs - Agence Science-Presse
Agence Science-Presse (Burgun, Isabelle) 2013-05-09

Chercheuse d'eau douce
Journal l'UQAM (Caza, Pierre-Etienne) 2013-04-15

Deux professeures obtiennent 772 000 $ grâce à la Fondation canadienne pour l'innovation
UQAM Nouvelles 2012-07-18