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May 25, 2022 - MSc available investigating the microbiome of khapra beetle
An MSc position is available for a January, 2023 start date. The successful candidate will be co-supervised by Robert Laird (University of Lethbridge), Kevin Floate (Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada; AAFC), and Vincent Hervet (AAFC), and will investigate the microbiome of khapra beetle, one of the world's most economically important invasive pests of stored grains and grain products. Click here for a PDF file containting more details about the position and explaining how to apply.

April 28, 2022 - Welcome
Welcome to new lab members Amanda Luzardo (MSc student) and Abbe Pawluk (future MSc student, current summer researcher)! Vicky Thwaites will transition to a new role as a summer researcher.

March 24, 2022 - Congratulations!
MSc student Priyanka Dutt was recently awarded a Women in STEM Award from the Government of Alberta. Congratulations, Pri!

January 1, 2022 - Welcome
Welcome to new Research Internship Concentration student Vicky Thwaites!

November 10, 2021 - Papers published
Former MSc students Kanishka Senevirathna and Shelby Dufton recently had papers published. See my Publications page for details.

September 1, 2021 - Welcome
Welcome to new Independent Studies Students Annelise Den Hertog and Kiara Kornelson!

August 26, 2021 - Congratulations!
Kanishka Senevirathna, Austin Paiha, and Suzanne Chmilar recently defended their respective MSc theses. Congratulations, Kanishka, Austin, and Suzanne!

February 19, 2021 - Congratulations
Congratulations to Pri Dutt (below), who was recently awarded an Alberta Conservation Association Grant in Biodiversity.

September 2, 2020 - Welcome
Priyanka Dutt (above) has joined the lab as an MSc student. Welcome, Pri!

July 31, 2020 - UQ
Rob recently completed a one-year sabbatical in the School of Biological Sciences at the University of Queensland (above). Thanks to my host researchers, my home- (UL) and home-away-from-home (UQ) institutions, and Australia for the opportunity of a lifetime!

February 3, 2020 - Papers accepted
Several new papers have been accepted in the past year. See my Publications page for det
ails.

September 2, 2019 - Congratulations!
Shelby Dufton and Sunil Shivananjappa recently defended their respective MSc theses. Congratulations, Shelby and Sunil!

February 26, 2019 - Cover of AJB
A recent paper by former lab member Patrick Barks and Rob Laird was chosen as the December, 2018 cover article for American Journal of Botany (see image above).

February 1, 2019 - Welcome
Kanishka Senevirathna (above) has joined the lab as an MSc student. Welcome, Kanishka!

February 1, 2019 - Research highlights
Recent papers by former lab members Diana Wilches and Patrick Barks have been highlighted in Entomology Today
and Duckweed Forum.

February 1, 2019 - Papers accepted
Several new papers have been accepted since August. See my Publications page for det
ails.

August 14, 2018 - Editor's Choice
A paper by former lab PhD student, Dr. Patrick Barks, co-authored by Zach Dempsey, Dr. Theresa Burg, and Rob, has been highlighted as the Editor's Choice article for the current issue (Vol. 106, Iss. 5) of
Journal of Ecology. An excerpt from the write-up: "This publication by Barks et al. constitutes a critical step forward in population ecology, ageing research and evolutionary biology due to their elegant methodology, novel angle on intra-specific variation coupled with variance decomposition of potential environmental drivers and extensive sample size." [Full write-up here]

June 25, 2018 - Congratulations
Jake Hayden successfully defended his MSc thesis. Congratulations, Jake!

May 22, 2018 - Papers accepted
Several
new papers have been accepted since January. See my Publications page for details.

May 1, 2018 - Welcome (back)
Suzanne Chmilar (above) has rejoined the lab as an MSc student. Welcome back, Suzanne! Summer student Chloe Devoy has joined the lab (co-supervised by Theresa Burg). Welcome, Chloe!

January 18, 2018 - Papers accepted
Several
new papers have been accepted in the last 1/2 year. See my Publications page for details.

January 17, 2018 - Welcome
Two new MSc students have started since my previous update. Welcome to Sunil Shivananjappa (above left) and Austin Paiha (above right)!

Convocation 2017

June 1, 2017 - Convocation
Diana Wilches, MSc, and Vincent Hervet, PhD, both walked the stage at Convocation today. They are pictured above with co-supervisors Kevin Floate and Rob Laird. Congratulations to you both!

Diana, Medal of Merit winner

June 1, 2017 - Congratulations
MSc graduate Diana Wilches (above, left, with Dean of Graduate Studies, Dr. Robert Wood) was awarded the MSc Medal of Merit for 2017.
[Link to article in Lethbridge Herald]
Congratulations on this prestigious award, Diana!

Vince (R) and Luxie

June 1, 2017 - Kudos
PhD graduate Vincent Hervet (above, right) was nominated for the PhD Medal of Merit for 2017.

March 3, 2017 - Congratulations
Suzanne Chmilar was awarded an NSERC Undergraduate Summer Research Award. Congratulations, Suzanne!

March 3, 2017 - Congratulations
Jake Hayden was awarded a Alberta Conservation Association Grant in Biodiversity. Congratulations, Jake!

Diana Wilches and her examination committee

November 25, 2016 - Congratulations
Diana Wilches successfully defended her MSc thesis. Congratulations, Diana!

November 22, 2016 - Congratulations
Vincent Hervet successfully defended his PhD thesis. Congratulations, Dr. Hervet!

September 6, 2016 - Welcome
Shelby Dufton and Suzanne Chmilar have joined the lab as an MSc student and an Independent Studies student, respectively. Welcome, Shelby and Suzanne!

September 6, 2016 - Accolades
PhD student Vincent Hervet was recently awarded the Robert J. O'Neil Outstanding PhD in Biological Control Award from the International Organization for Biological Control - Neararctic Regional Section. Congratulations, Vince!

Cata's defence party

August 9, 2016 - Congratulations
Catalina Fernández (black shirt, above, front-rightish) successfully defended her MSc thesis. Congratulations, Cata!

August 2, 2016 - F1 generation
The lab has been very 'productive' recently with both Greg and Jessica, and Vince and Rachel welcoming new children and babies. A hearty congratulations to you and your growing families!

Laird lab 2016

June 20, 2016 - Congratulations
Greg Holmes (blue shirt, above) successfully defended his MSc thesis (and welcomed THREE little ones). Congratulations, Greg!

May 25, 2016 - Accolades
Former PhD student Patrick Barks recently won the prestigious Medal of Merit for the University of Lethbridge's PhD program. Congratulations, Dr. Barks!

May 2, 2016 - Welcome
Eric Ankutowicz has joined the lab as a summer researcher and will continue as an Independent Studies student in the fall. Welcome, Eric!

April 13, 2016 - Paper accepted
MSc student Diana Wilches' paper on diapause and temperature tolerance in dermestids was recently accepted for publication in Journal of Stored Products Research. See Publications for details.

February 5, 2016 - Press
PhD Candidate Vincent Hervet's paper on the use of the McMorran artificial diet to rear lepidopterans was highlighted in Entomology Today, an online news site of the Entomological Society of America.

January 5, 2016 - Welcome!
Jake Hayden has joined the lab as an MSc student. Jake will work on the evolution of aging. Welcome, Jake!

December 11, 2015 - Paper accepted
Recent PhD grad Patrick Barks' paper on Multigenerational parental age effects in Lemna minor was recently accepted for publication in Journal of Evolutionary Biology. See Publications for details.

December 8, 2015 - Paper accepted
PhD Candidate Vincent Hervet's paper on the use of the McMorran artificial diet to rear lepidopterans was recently accepted for publication in Journal of Insect Science. See Publications for details.

August 5, 2015 - Paper accepted
A paper by Anna Hargreaves (UBC), Susan Bailey (Aarhus University), and Rob -- on the topic of dispersal evolution during range shifts induced by climate change -- was recentaly accepted for publication in Journal of Evolutionary Biology. See Publications for details.

May 28, 2015 - Convocation
Congratulations to lab members Kevin Kwok, MSc, and Patrick Barks, PhD, on your recent convocation.

April 17, 2015 - Congratulations
Patrick Barks successfully defended his PhD thesis on the evolution of senescence in Lemna minor. Congratulations, Dr. Barks!

October 20, 2014 - Congratulations
Vincent Hervet was recently awarded the Best Student Presentation Award at the annual meeting of the Entomological Society of Alberta. Congratulations, Vince!

October 8, 2014 - Paper accepted
A paper by Rob and Brandon Schamp on intransitive competition on small-world networks was recently accepted for publication in Journal of Theoretical Biology. See Publications for details.

September 9, 2014 - Paper accepted
PhD student Patrick Barks' first paper on senescence in Lemna was recently accepted for publication in Functional Ecology. See Publications for details.

July 23, 2014 - Promotion
On July 1, Rob was officially promoted to Associate Professor (with tenure).

Laird lab June 2014

June 20, 2014 - Congratulations
Kevin Kwok (above, front right) successfully defended his MSc thesis. Kevin is the first lab member to reach this stage. Congratulations, Kevin!

January 9, 2014 - Welcome
Catalina Fernández has joined the lab as an MSc student. Welcome, Catalina!

October 28, 2013 - Paper accepted
A paper by Rob on bacteria playing rock-paper-scissors was recently accepted for publication in Oikos. See my Publications page for details.

October 15, 2013 - Paper accepted
A paper by Vince Hervet et al. documenting the first North American report of Cotesia vannessae - a braconid wasp parasitoid of cutworms (among other lepidopterans) - was recently accepted for publication in Canadian Entomologist. See my Publications page for details.

September 3, 2013 - Welcome!
Two new MSc students, Greg Holmes and Diana Wilches, have joined the lab. They will be co-supervised by members of Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada: Rose De Clerck-Floate and Syama Chatterton (Greg); and Kevin Floate and Paul Fields (Diana). Welcome!

August 19, 2013 - Vince on TV
PhD student Vincent Hervet answers questions on Global TV Lethbridge about the recent Insect Discovery Day that took place at the Alberta Birds of Prey Centre in Coaldale. Click here and skip ahead to 4:30.

August 12, 2013 - Canola School
PhD student Vincent Hervet answers questions about cutworms for Canola School on realagriculture.com.

June 28, 2013 - Paper accepted
A paper by Rob on the evolution of cooperation was recently accepted for publication in Physical Review E. See my Publications page for details.

May 30, 2013 - CUSO
Rob recently returned from Fribourg, Switzerland, where he gave a keynote talk at an interdisciplinary serminar called "Interaction - Theoretical Frameworks" at the University of Fribourg under the auspices of the Consortium of Universities of Western Switzerland (CUSO).

May 18, 2013 - CSEE
The lab has just returned from the annual meeting of the Canadian Society for Ecology and Evolution. The meeting was a success, with Vincent, Patrick, and Rob giving talks, and Sue and Kevin presenting posters. Here is a lab photo at Lake Louise, taken during our road trip to Kelowna, the site of the meeting (i.e., at UBCO):

Lake Louise

April 29, 2013 - Congratulations
Congratulations to lab member Vincent Hervet, who passed his transfer exam and is now officially a PhD student.

April 22, 2013 - Congratulations
Congratulations to PhD candidate Patrick Barks, who recently passed his comprehensive examination.

April 8, 2013 - Paper accepted
A paper on the evolution of cooperation (co-authored by Rob, former independent-studies student Dee Goyal, and U of L math prof Soroosh Yazdani) was recently accepted for publication in Physica A. See my Publications page for details.

March 1, 2013 - Des parasitoïdes désirés
Lab member Vincent Hervet was interviewed by Radio Canada about his parasitoid research. (En français.)

February 28, 2013 - Welcome
Sarah Bogart has joined the lab to work with PhD student Patrick Barks on the evolution of senescence. Welcome!

February 28, 2013 - Parasitoids in the press
An article on lab member Vincent Hervet's parasitoid research appeared in the St. Albert Gazette.

February 25, 2013 - Blog post highlights Vincent Hervet's research
Blogger Adam Blake has reported on Vince's parasitoid research. Check it out here. The post includes video of parasitoids emerging from a cabbage looper.

February 14, 2013 - MSc Position: Evolution of aging in aquatic plants
An NSERC-funded MSc position is available in the Department of Biological Sciences at the University of Lethbridge (Alberta, Canada). The focus of the project is on the evolution of senescence (a.k.a. ‘aging’) with a particular focus on aquatic plants, especially those in the sub-family Lemnoideae. The project will include a combination of lab and field work, primarily involving techniques from population biology and evolutionary ecology. Potential start dates are September 2013 or January 2014 with a possibility of a pre-registration research assistantship (i.e., in the summer of 2013). To apply, please send your CV along with a cover letter indicating your research experience and interests to Dr. Rob Laird (robert.laird at uleth.ca).

Other positions involving co-supervised projects on agricultural applications of plant-insect interactions may also be available. Contact Rob for details (robert.laird at uleth.ca).  

February 6, 2013 - Lab photo
Laird lab 2013
From left. Rob Laird, Vincent Hervet, Kevin Kwok, Patrick Barks, Susan Bury.

January 29, 2013 - Congratulations!
Vincent Hervet's research poster on noctuid-braconid interactions won 1st prize in the recent Biology Graduate Research Symposium. Patrick Barks' poster received an honourable mention. Congratulations, Vince and Patrick!

October 17, 2012 - Paper accepted
A paper based on Kevin Kwok's BSc research on the inducibility of extrafloral nectaries in broad bean was recently accepted by Plant Ecology. This is the first student-authored paper from the Laird lab. See my Publications page for details.

September 26, 2012 - Welcome!
Briana Smith joined the lab in September as a lab technician/cricket wrangler. Welcome, Briana!

March 27, 2012 - Welcome!
RJ Murphy will be joining the lab in May as a summer student. Welcome!

January 10, 2012 - Lab photo 2012
Laird lab 2012From left.Sue Bury, Patrick Barks, Vincent Hervet, Kevin Kwok, Rob Laird (& Sunny).

December 20, 2011 - Paper accepted
A paper on the evolution of cooperation was recently accepted by International Journal of Bifurcation and Chaos. See my Publications page for details.

December 20, 2011 - Welcome!
The lab welcomes new PhD student Patrick Barks. Best of luck with your studies!

December 20, 2011 - Paper published
A paper on the evolution of cooperation was recently published in Journal of Theoretical Biology. See my Publications page for details

August 4, 2011 - Welcome!
The lab welcomes new MSc students Susan Bury, Vincent Hervet, and Kevin Kwok. Best of luck with your studies!

April 18, 2011 - Congratulations!
Lab member Kevin Kwok's presentation on the induction of extrafloral nectaries in Vicia faba was awarded first prize in the Department of Biological Sciences' Luke Stebbins Symposium for Undergraduate Research. Congratulations, Kevin!

March 15, 2011 - Paper published
A paper on senescence in odonates by Tom Sherratt et al. was recently published online in Journal of Evolutionary Biology. For details, see my Publications page.

January 4, 2011 - Paper accepted
A paper on senescence in odonates by Tom Sherratt et al. was recently provisionally accepted for publication in Journal of Evolutionary Biology. For details, see my Publications page.

January 4, 2011 - Welcome!
Welcome to Dipankar Goyal, an new independent studies student.

October 12, 2010 - New menu item
Note that there is a new menu item: 'Lab facility'. This page shows off our brand-spanking-new lab within the Alberta Water and Environmental Science Building at the University of Lethbridge. The lab is now 100% open for business - All that's missing is YOU! (See the 'Join us!' page for details.

September 7, 2010 - Student recruiting
The following ad appeared recently on ECOLOG:

An NSERC-funded graduate student position (MSc or PhD) is available in the Department of Biological Sciences at the University of Lethbridge (Alberta, Canada). The student will be co-supervised by Rob Laird of the University of Lethbridge and Brandon Schamp of Algoma University (Sault Ste Marie, Ontario, Canada). The focus of the project is non-transitive competition (as in the game Rock-Paper-Scissors) and its potential to promote the maintenance of biodiversity via indirect facilitation. The project will include some combination of lab work, field work, and mathematical/computer modeling -- ideally all three!  Our previous empirical work has examined coexistence in plant and invertebrate communities, but we welcome applicants interested in working on other systems as well. Interested candidates should visit our web pages for details and previous publications (http://people.uleth.ca/~robert.laird/>, http://people.auc.ca/schamp/) and send us an email including your CV and a brief statement of your research experience and interests.

We are looking forward to receiving your application!!

September 7, 2010 - Paper published
A paper on senescence in damselflies by Tom Sherratt et al. is in this month's Journal of Animal Ecology. For details, see my Publications page.

May 27, 2010 - Paper accepted
A paper on senescence in damselflies by Tom Sherratt et al. was recently accepted for publication in Journal of Animal Ecology. For details, see my Publications page.

May 20, 2010 - Welcome!
Welcome to Brad van Paridon, who will be working in the lab as a summer student. Brad will mainly be working on modeling evolutionary reliability theory.

March 30, 2010 - NSERC
The lab is now funded by an NSERC Discovery Grant. This means I now have more funding available for qualified graduate and undergraduate research students. See the 'Join us!' page for details.

March 30, 2010 - Welcome!
Welcome to Kevin Kwok, who will be joining the lab in May as an Honours thesis student. Kevin will be conducting a greenhouse experiment on extra-floral nectaries.

March 16, 2010 - E & M Review
A commentary on a recent paper ("The economics of evolution: Henry Ford and the Model T"), co-authored by me and Tom Sherratt, has been published online in The Evolution & Medicine Review. For details, see my Publications page.

March 8, 2010 - F1000
A recent paper ("The economics of evolution: Henry Ford and the Model T"), co-authored by me and Tom Sherratt, has been evaluated and recommended by Faculty of 1000.
For details, see my Publications page.

January 10, 2010 - Welcome!
Welcome to Stephanie Crowshoe who has joined the lab as an independent study student.

January 10, 2010 - Papers published
Two papers on the evolution of senescence, co-authored by me and Tom Sherratt, were recently published by Oikos and BioSystems. For details, see my Publications page.

October 22, 2009 - Papers accepted
Two papers on the evolution of senescence, co-authored by me and Tom Sherratt, were recently accepted by Oikos and BioSystems. For details, see my Publications page.

July 1, 2009 - The start
Rob begins his appointment as an assistant professor in the Department of Biological Sciences at the University of Lethbridge.

June 19, 2009 - Webpage operational
My webpage is now functional, but is likely to evolve considerably in the next little while. It will officially launch on July 1.

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