Graduate Students

Sean Boyle (PhD Candidate)

Contact Information:

Sean Boyle (PhD Candidate)

Dept. of Biology, S625, Laurentian University

935 Ramsey Lake Road, Sudbury, On, P3E2C6

Phone: 705-675-1151 ext. 2700


Twitter: @PQPTurtles


Research Focus


Roads are the most prevalent human made structures in the world, and while being of vital importance to the economy, and society, have an enormous impact on wildlife.


The core of my project revolves around roadways.  I am a graduate student working with Drs. David Lesbarrères and Jacqueline Litzgus, investigating both the direct and indirect effects that roads have on wildlife, as well as potential solutions to problems such as road mortality, driver safety and habitat connectivity.

Academic Publications:


Popp, J.N. and S.P Boyle (equal contributors). 2016: Railroads: underrepresented in science? Basic and Applied Ecology. In Press -


Boyle, S.P, J.D. Litzgus and D. Lesbarrères. 2015. Wounding. CHELYDRA SERPENTINA (Snapping Turtle). Herpetological Review. 46(2): 240-241.


Boyle, S.P. and P.M. Moldowan. 2013. Terrestrial oviposition. AMBYSTOMA MACULATUM (Spotted Salamander). Herpetological Review. 44(1): 113-114.


My project focuses on the effects we as humans have on wildlife, specifically via our roadways, and aims to investigate the effectiveness of mitigation techniques used to reduce those threats.  I am also interested in secondary effects which we have on wild populations, and incorporating those effects in my evaluations.


Part of my project focuses on the effectiveness of mitigation structures with respect to a large mammal assemblage, approximately 50km south of Sudbury, ON, Canada.  We monitor the movement patterns of large mammals such as moose, elk, and deer around the highway as well as within three connectivity structures with trail cameras, hair snags, and winter snow tracking.


In a second system, I investigate the effectiveness of mitigation structures for reducing mortality and fragmentation effects on reptiles and amphibians.  Working in Presqu'ile Provincial Park, ON, we began a multi-year BACI design study involving road surveys, and wetland surveys and trapping for herpetofauna.  We use intensive surveying over five years in order to rigorously evaluate the mitigation features installed in the park, and fill the gaps in our understanding of how well mitigation works.