News at the University of New Brunswick

Renowned stream ecologist coming to UNB Fredericton and Saint John to talk about the health of the rivers and watersheds of North America

Author: Communications

Posted on Nov 1, 2011

Category: myUNB , Events

Dr. J. David Allan is coming to the University of New Brunswick to deliver the Canadian Rivers Institute’s H.B.N. Hynes Lectures on Nov. 7 and 8.  Dr. Allan was the 2009 recipient of the Award of Excellence of the North American Benthological Society and the author of two widely used textbooks on stream ecology.

He is a world-renown scientist who is similarly known for his collaborative research activities that are directed at the translation of aquatic science into useful products for management, conservation, and restoration of running waters. He can often be found working on conservation activities including working closely with local watershed councils to investigate the influence of changing land use on river ecosystems, the factors affecting success of stream restoration, and the general education about the ecology of freshwater communities.

“It is a great opportunity to host a renowned researcher and author like Dr. Allan,” says Allen Curry, director of the Canadian River’s Institute at UNB.  “We are thrilled to have someone who has contributed so extensively to our understanding of running waters and similarly has made the effort to educate everyone with his knowledge.”

Dr. Curry says Dr. Allan has worked in many systems around the world, but his experience and understanding of North American streams and rivers makes his visit to New Brunswick special. 

“Dr. Allan’s research and experiences will be of great interest to everyone in the province because of the importance of our rivers to our culture and the economy, said Dr. Curry.  “His lectures and message about the rivers as indicators of ecosystem status are an excellent complement to our recently released Saint John River State of the Environment Report.”

Dr. Allan will give a science lecture at UNB Saint John on Monday, Nov. 7, at 2:30 p.m. in the Ganong Hall Lecture Theatre.  In his talk ‘Century-scale changes in catchment nutrient inputs and outputs’, he will discuss how human activities in the water and across the landscape can alter ecosystem processes and especially how nutrient levels in rivers can change and impact the health of a river.

On Tuesday, Nov. 8, at 7 p.m., Dr. Allan will give a public lecture at UNB Fredericton at the Loring Bailey Hall, Room 146 (2nd Floor),. His talk ‘Lessons learned from assessing multiple stressors to Great Lakes ecosystem; will focus on decades of research and experience assessing, understanding, and attempting to mitigate the multitude of stressors and their accumulating impacts across the Great Lakes basin.

Dr. Allan has been working on freshwater ecosystems for more than 40 years.  His most recent research interests focus on the influence of land use on stream ecosystem health, nutrient runoff from watersheds and freshwater conservation planning. He currently leads a research team that is evaluating multiple threats to the Great Lakes. In addition to both local and regional work centered in the Midwest, his research has taken place at sites in the Rocky Mountains, Southeast Alaska, Sweden, Israel, and Venezuela.

Dr. Allan is professor and associate dean, at the School of Natural Resources & Environment, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, USA. He has served on the boards of American Rivers and the Michigan Chapter of The Nature Conservancy. He has frequently served as a consultant to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and other agencies on topics related to aquatic ecosystem health.

The H.B.N Hynes lecture series is hosted annually by the Canadian River Institute at the University of New Brunswick. The series is named in honour of Dr. Noel Hynes who is known as the ‘the father of running water ecology’, who wrote the first comprehensive textbook, “The Ecology of Running Waters” in 1970. 

The Canadian Rivers Institute was established in 2001 as a multi-university, multi-sector institute focused on protecting the ecological health of Canadian rivers and estuaries.

For more information on the CRI and the Hynes Lecture series, visit 

For more information on this year’s H.B.N. Hynes Lectures, or to arrange advance interviews with Dr. David Allan or Dr. Allen Curry, contact the CRI at 506-453-4770 or