Aaron Cogger


I am a fourth year student working towards my BSc in Aquatic Resources and Biology. I have always been interested in animal behaviour and conservation so taking these programs at StFx seemed like a perfect choice for me.  This summer I am working as a research assistant, mainly dealing with behavioural toxicology in the American Lobster. I am very excited to be working with Dr. Wyeth and Ella Maltby on this project and am excited to see what we can discover. After my undergrad, I hope to continue on with my studies in marine sciences.

Kero Youssef

34308078_1517803748328419_4643162609674092544_nI am a second year student with a major in biology. Born in Egypt, I have lived in Montreal for 7 years before moving to Antigonish. I am very excited to start doing research this summer, as I will be able to learn new things and gain a lot of experience. I will be working with Alex, studying gene expression in the nervous system of Lymnaea. Doing this research will also help me prepare to do a master’s degree after graduating, in hope of applying to medical school in the future. My other hobbies include playing soccer, video games and watching anime.

Katerina Basque



I’m a second year student in the Bachelor of Business Administration Program, and I’m from We’koqma’q First Nation. I had not aimed towards going into science until I heard of this research project that was involving my own community. I’m honoured to take this position doing research for the summer involving anti-fouling. It’s amazing to be able to experience a different environment and also to be a part of this project because it’s beneficial to my community. I’m very glad that I got the opportunity to open a whole new world to me in the biology and chemistry departments. I’m really looking forward to spending the summer doing research, and will be testing anti-fouling materials in We’koqma’q with Michelle Hodgson.

Michelle Hodgson

lab photoEntering St. FX as a mature student, I was able to take some time off between high school and university. During that time, I travelled to various places, but the most memorable experience involved 3 short weeks of volunteering at an elephant sanctuary. It was during that trip that I discovered how passionate and interested I am in wildlife, and specifically, wildlife conservation.

Now going into my third year as an Honours student in Biology, I’m extremely excited that I am involved in my second year of research. After completing my first year, I was lucky to receive a research position studying one of Canada’s rarest plants, Geum peckii, located in Brier Island, NS.

As a new member of the Wyeth lab, I will be collaborating with two other students to find environmentally friendly antifouling coatings in hopes that we can apply our methods to aquaculture netting.

After I finish my undergrad, I hope to do a Masters degree relating to either wildlife conservation or animal behaviour.

Sophie LeBlanc


I am a fourth year student pursuing my BSc in Honours Chemistry. I am originally from Ottawa, and for the past two summers I have worked at the Children’s Hospital of Eastern Ontario (CHEO) Research Institute researching rare genetic disease including developing a zebrafish animal model for Pyridoxine-Dependent Epilepsy. This year I am working on developing environmentally-friendly antifouling surfaces for marine aquaculture, specifically against mussel fouling in the Bras D’Or lakes in Cape Breton as part of my thesis work. After my undergraduate degree, I am interested in pursuing a career in medicine, and I hope to someday have the opportunity to join Medecins Sans Frontieres (Doctors Without Borders). I would like to always be involved in research in some capacity throughout my career. My other interests and hobbies include drawing and painting, singing and playing guitar, running, playing soccer, skiing, being a coxswain on the StFX Rowing Team and a member of the StFX Tennis Team, hiking and traveling. 

Presenting at CSZ in St. John’s

We’ve just wrapped up a great week at the annual meeting of the Canadian Society of Zoologists. Alex Young and Areej Alansari presented their snail research – on neural gene expression and navigation behaviour, respectively. Ella Maltby presented her work from the last couple years on ultraviolet light as an antifoulant. And Russell went in a new direction, sharing research on crow behaviour conducted by the 2015 and 2016 students in his 4th year Animal Behaviour course.

milestones, news, and more

Lots of congratulations to share…

Carmen Landry submitted the final version of her Honours thesis.

Amelia MacKenzie was awarded Holly E. Bartlett Memorial Bursary (in the StFX News)

Ella Maltby and Areej Alansari presented their MSc work in a split seminar to the Biology Department to widespread acclaim!

And RCW and Mar Wonham’s article on teaching the scientific method also was shared by StFX News (along with some nice comments from Carmen and others!)

Ella Maltby

Areej Alansari

Wyethlab at Student Research Day


Ella and Carmen

Unfortunately, I had to miss Student Research Day this year while travelling in Europe.  But the WyethLab was well represented!  Carmen Landry won the top award for oral presentations sharing her work on reference genes for qPCR in snails.  Although they didn’t compete for awards, I’m reliably informed that both Ella Maltby (poster) and Amelia MacKenzie (talk) did a great job with their presentations on antifouling research.

JEB Symposium & Dropping in on Dr. Daniel Jackson

2018-03-30 09.01.25

Lymnaea juveniles used for in situs

I have just returned from a quick trip to Europe.  The first half was participating in Journal of Experimental Biology Symposium 2018: Linking brain and behaviour in animal navigation.  Spring time in the shadow of Mt Olympus in northern Greece was a great place to meet and discuss the forefront of navigation neuroethology.  And then the second half was quick visit to meet up with Alex (Wyethlab MSc student) and Dr. Daniel Jackson at University of Göttingen.  Alex is visiting Dan’s lab to learn in situ hybridization methods in the pond snail, Lymnaea.  Some good conversations with Dan – hopefully leading to further interesting collaborations in the future!