Biological Sciences

David Locky

Associate Professor, Biological Sciences

PhD (Alberta), M.Sc. (Waterloo), BES (Waterloo), Tech. (Sir Sandford Fleming)

6-117G, City Centre Campus
10700 – 104 Avenue
Edmonton, AB


Dr. Locky is a wetland ecologist and a faculty member since 2010. He began his training as a Fish and Wildlife Technician at Fleming College (1984) and worked in fisheries research for a year. He went on to the University of Waterloo where he completed a BES Geography (1997) and then a M.Sc. Biology (1999) examining the effects of constructed wetlands on bird communities and vegetation. The University of Alberta followed with a PhD in Environmental Biology and Ecology (2005) focussing on various aspects of boreal wetlands from classification, biogeochemistry, plant diversity, impacts of logging and biogeographical determinants of plant diversity.

Dr. Locky's research interests and expertise are broad and include wetland classification and evaluation, plant diversity, ecology and biogeography, animal ecology, biogeochemistry, natural and human impacts and wetland policy and practice. Some current projects include the incidence of microplastics in aquatic ecosystesm in Alberta and beyond, understanding fish diet changes over time in Lac La Biche and wetland policy development in Alberta and Canada. He has supervised a number of students in various projects for Independent Research (Biol 498) and has published papers with his students.

Dr. Locky is a practicing Professional Wetland Scientist and Professional Biologist and has experience conducting environmental impact assessments, wetland evaluations, community classification and rare plant surveys.

Heis an Adjunct Professor at the University of Alberta and Athabasca University where he co-advises graduate students, sits on committees and guest lectures.

Available to supervise senior students' independent study.

Wetland ecology, peat land ecology, aquatic ecology, plankton, rivers, lakes, bird ecology, amphibian ecology, invertebrate ecology, landscape classification, uplands, prairie ecosystems, rare plant ecology, surface water biogeochemistry, fisheries, wetland policy, plant identification, bryophyte identification, anthropogenic impacts to the environment, microplastics in aquatic ecosystems, terrestrial ecology

Teaching and Research Interests

I feel very fortunate to have a college diploma and university degrees; these have allowed me to work in environmental consulting and together shaped me as an instructor and researcher. While I am equally at home conducting research in the field and in the laboratory, I am quite passionate in transferring this experience to my teaching. I believe that it is important that students have the most up-to-date information possible. The courses I teach and my research interests intersect very neatly such that each informs the other. My goal is pass on as much of my passion and enthusiasm for ecology to my students; perhaps some will be inspired enough to pursue ecology as a career or, in the least, as a serious personal interest.

I currently teach Freshwater Ecology (Biol 310), Biological Statistics and Research Design (Biol 337), Principles of Ecology (Biol 208), labs for Organisms and Their Environment (Biol 108), Contemporary Issues in Freshwater Ecology (Biol 495), and have co-taught Field Methods in Ecology (Biol 410).

While I focus primarily on a broad sweep of wetland research, I routinely work outside of this realm including in fisheries research, lake and river ecology, plant ecology, wildlife ecology, terrestrial ecology, environmental impacts (e.g., microplastics) and environmental policy and practice. As I am interested in biological statistics, I often work with other researchers in designing and carrying out research. If you have an idea for a project, please do not hesitate to bring it to me for discussion.

Selected Publications / Presentations / Conference Papers

Stoneman, R., Bain, C., Locky, D., Mawdsley, N., McLaughlan, M., Kumaran-Prentice, S., Reed, M., & Swales, V. (2016) "Policy drivers for peatland conservation." In A. Bonn, T. Allot, M. Evans, H. Joosten, & R. Stoneman (Eds.). Peatland restoration and ecosystem services: Science, policy, and practice. Ecological Review Series. Cambridge UK: Cambridge University Press.

Doell, D. & Locky. D.A. (2016). Trends in wildlife intake at a rehabilitation centre in Central Alberta: A retrospective analysis of birds, mammals and herptiles, 1990-2012. Journal of Wildlife Rehabilitation, 36, 17-29.

Locky, D.A. (August 15-19, 2016).Wetlands as keystone ecosystems: Conservation cornerstones in dynamically-changing landscape. Presented at the Annual Conference of the International Peat Congress, Kuching, Borneo, Malaysia.

Locky, D.A. (2012). The challenge of managing a keystone ecosystem: Cumulative impacts in a peatland-dominated landscape in Alberta, Canada. Extended Abstract published in the Proceedings of the Annual Conference of the International Peat Congress, June 3 - 8, 2012, Stockholm, Sweden.

Locky, D.A. (2011). Wetlands, land use, & policy: Alberta’s keystone ecosystem at a crossroads. Policy position paper published by the Alberta Institute of Agrologists.


Awards / Grants / Fellowships

  • Strategic Research Grant, MacEwan University (2017-2019)
  • Research Council Dissemination Fund, MacEwan University (2016)
  • Internal Research Grant, MacEwan University (2015)
  • Research Council Conference, Exhibition, and Performance Travel Fund, MacEwan University (2012)
  • Athabasca University Research Incentive Grant, Athabasca University (2008-2010)
  • Publishing Stipends, Jacques Whitford Consulting (2006, 2007)
  • Letter of Commendation for Teaching Excellence, University of Alberta (2003)
  • Canadian Circumpolar Institute C/Bar Research Grant (2001-2003)
  • NSERC Industrial Postgraduate Scholarship, University of Alberta (2000-2002)
  • NSERC Postgraduate Scholarship A, University of Waterloo (1999)
  • NSERC Postgraduate Scholarship B, University of Alberta (1999 - 2002)
  • Canadian Association of Geographers Undergraduate Award (1997)
  • Distinguished Award for Academic Achievement, University of Waterloo (1997)

Professional Associations / Memberships

  • Professional Wetland Scientist, International, certified since 2006
  • Society of Wetland Scientists Professional Biologist, Alberta, certified since 2006
  • Alberta Society of Professional Biologists

Boards / Committees

  • Research Committee, Biological Sciences Department, MacEwan University