Investigating predator-prey dynamics of leatherback sea turtles and jellyfish in Atlantic Canadian waters

The Winter Skate (Leucoraja ocellata) is listed as endangered in the Gulf of St. Lawrence with a declining population trend. Its main threats include natural predation and bycatch.

My honours thesis will use DFO RV survey data from 1970-2017 and novel statistical models (created in collaboration with the Math and Statistics department) to perform a full spatiotemporal analysis on the Winter Skate. This will include investigating the species’ abundance and distribution over time, where they’ve become locally extirpated, and hotspots of co-occurrence with commercial fish stocks. This project falls under Module G - “Future-proofing Marine Protected Area Networks”, one of several modules funded by the Ocean Frontier Institute. The ultimate goal of these analyses is to help inform MPA and spatial management processes in the NW Atlantic.

Honours Biology Student

Sophie Tattrie
Dalhousie University


Boris Worm (Dalhousie University)


Joanna Mills-Flemming (Math and Stats Department)


Honours Project

Contact Information
Principal Investigator
Sophie Tattrie
Honours Student
Biology Department, Dalhousie University
1355 Oxford Street
PO Box 15000
Halifax NS B3H 4R2