Matthew Windle

Research Scientist

(613) 936-6620 x 307

mwindle [at] riverinstitute.ca

BIO

I am a biologist with experience in environmental science, freshwater ecosystem ecology, spatial analyses, contaminant analyses, and Remotely Piloted Aircraft Systems (RPAS). I completed a BSc in environmental science from Queen’s University, and a M.Sc. in Biology at Memorial University of Newfoundland. In addition to my work as a Research Scientist at the River Institute, I am also a professor in the Environmental Technician Program at St. Lawrence College. I possess certifications for open water SCUBA, the Ontario Stream Assessment Protocol (OSAP), Royal Ontario Museum (ROM) fish identification workshops, advanced operations and flight reviewer status for RPAS from Transport Canada, and the Ontario Wetland Evaluation System (OWES).


Research Interests

My research focuses on the ecological health of aquatic ecosystems, including studies of nearshore fish communities, species-at-risk, aquatic invasive species, contaminated sediments, and coastal wetlands. As a certified advanced drone pilot and Geographic Information Systems instructor, my research incorporates remote sensing and spatial analysis tools to study shifting trends, habitat interactions and large scale processes of freshwater ecosystems.

Publications

Astorg, L., Sanderson, S., Côté-Gravel, V., Sorbara, F., Windle, M.J.S., Hendry, A., and A.M. Derry. 2019. Regional and local scale refuges combine to buffer aquatic biodiversity in the face of exotic invasion. In Review

Goretzke, J.A., Windle, M.J.S., and J.M. Farrell. 2019. Range Expansion of the Western Tubenose Goby (Proterorhinus semilunaris Heckel, 1837) in eastern Lake Ontario and the upper St. Lawrence River. BioInvasions Records 8(3): 684-698.

Windle, M.J.S., Rose, G.A., Devillers, R., and M.-J. Fortin. 2012. Spatio-temporal variations of invertebrate-cod-temperature relationships on the Newfoundland Shelf, 1995-2009. Marine Ecology Progress Series 469: 263-278.

Windle, M.J.S., Rose, G.A., Devillers, R., and M.-J. Fortin. 2010. Exploring spatial non-stationarity of fisheries data using geographically weighted regression (GWR): an example from the Northwest Atlantic. ICES Journal of Marine Science 67: 145-154.

Bradbury, I.R., Laurel, B.J., Robichaud, D., Rose, G.A., Snelgrove, P.V.R., Gregory, R.S., Cote, D. and M.J.S. Windle. 2008. Discrete spatial dynamics in a marine broadcast spawner: Re-evaluating scales of connectivity and habitat associations in Atlantic cod (Gadus morhua L.) in coastal Newfoundland. Fisheries Research 91: 299-309.

Windle, M.J.S., Neis, B., Bornstein, S., Binkley, M., and P. Navarro. 2008. Fishing occupational health and safety: A comparison of regulatory regimes and safety outcomes in six countries. Marine Policy 32: 701-710.

Rose,G.A., Bradbury,I.R., deYoung,B., Fudge,S.B., Lawson,G.L., Mello,L.G.S., Robichaud,D.R., Sherwood,G., Snelgrove,P.V.R., and M.J.S. Windle. 2008. Rebuilding Atlantic cod: Lessons from a spawning ground in coastal Newfoundland. In: G.H. Kruse, K. Drinkwater, J.N. Ianelli, J.S. Link, D.L. Stram, V.Wespestad, and D. Woodby (eds.). Resiliency of gadid stocks to fishing and climate change. Alaska Sea Grant, University of Alaska Fairbanks.

Windle, M.J.S., and G.A. Rose. 2007. Do cod form spawning leks? Evidence from a Newfoundland spawning ground. Marine Biology 150: 671-380.

Windle, M.J.S., and G.A. Rose. 2005. Migration route familiarity and homing of transplanted Atlantic cod (Gadus morhua). Fisheries Research 75: 193-199.

Technical Reports

Windle, M.J.S., MacDougall, M., Perron, M.A., and MacMillan, M. 2020. Review of potential ecological impacts from winter drawdown scenarios in Lake St. Lawrence. Final report prepared for the Lake Ontario – St. Lawrence River Board and Great Lakes – St. Lawrence River Adaptive Management Committee of the International Joint Commission. April 2020.

Windle, M.J.S. 2020. Characterization of Seasonal Macrophyte Coverage along the Cornwall Waterfront in support of the Long Term Monitoring Program for the Cornwall Sediment Strategy (CSS). Final report prepared for Environment and Climate Change Canada in support of the St. Lawrence River (Cornwall) Remedial Action Plan. March 2020.

Windle, M.J.S., and Ridal, J.J. 2019. Cornwall Sediment Strategy Long Term Monitoring Program: Establishing baseline concentrations for nearshore surface sediments. Final report prepared for Environment and Climate Change Canada in support of the St. Lawrence River (Cornwall) Remedial Action Plan. June 2019.

Windle, M.J.S. 2019. Assessing ecosystem indicators in the St. Lawrence River. Final report prepared for the Loblaw Water Fund and WWF Canada. April 2019.

Windle, M.J.S. 2019. Pugnose shiner and other minnows in the Upper St. Lawrence River. Final report prepared for the Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry (MNRF) Species at Risk Stewardship Fund (SARSF). Project SARSF_68_17_SLRIES2. March 2019.

Moir, K., Windle, M.J.S., and Ridal, J.J. 2018. Cornwall Sediment Strategy Mapping Project: sedimentary profiles and distribution of contaminants in nearshore sediments of the Cornwall Area of Concern (AOC) in 2015-2016. Report prepared for Environment and Climate Change Canada and the Ontario Ministry of the Environment and Climate Change, in support of the St. Lawrence River (Cornwall) Remedial Action Plan. January 2018.

Windle, M.J.S. 2017. Unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) for fish telemetry research. Final report prepared for RME Geomatics on behalf of St. Lawrence College of Applied Arts and Technology. OCE Project #: 24242. May 2017.

Windle, M.J.S., and Hickey, L. 2017. Pugnose shiner and other minnows in the Upper St. Lawrence River. Final report prepared for the Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry (MNRF) Species at Risk Stewardship Fund (SARSF). Project SAR-2016-56-SLRI2. March 2017.

Windle, M.J.S., and Ridal, J.J. 2016. Spatial analysis of mercury concentrations and other contaminants in nearshore sediments of the Cornwall Area of Concern (AOC). Final report prepared for the Ontario Ministry of the Environment and Climate Change, in support of the St. Lawrence River (Cornwall) Remedial Action Plan and the Canada-Ontario Agreement. July 2016.

Windle, M.J.S., Delage, K., and Hickey, M.B.C. 2015. American eel habitat characterization and usage in the St. Lawrence River watershed. Final report prepared for the Ministry of Natural Resources Species at Risk Stewardship Fund (SARSF). Project 13-2013. March 2015.

Razavi, R., Windle, M., Savard, L., and Ridal, J. 2015. A spatial analysis of mercury concentrations in shoreline sediments of the St. Lawrence River (Cornwall) Area of Concern. Draft report prepared for Environment Canada and the Ontario Ministry of the Environment and Climate Change. March 2015.

Windle, M.J.S., Delage, K., and Ridal, J.J.. 2014. Compilation, mapping and spatial analysis of historical mercury concentrations in sediments and biota of the Cornwall Area of Concern (AOC). Report prepared for the Ontario Ministry of the Environment and Climate Change, Kingston, ON. March 2014.

Conferences and Invited Presentations

Windle, M.J.S. Effects of season, habitat characteristics, and water levels on fish assemblages in coastal wetlands. Oral presentation at the International Association for Great Lakes Research (IAGLR) 62nd Annual Conference on Great Lakes Research, Brockport, NY, June 12, 2019.

Windle, M.J.S. Water levels and ecosystem health of the St. Lawrence River. Oral presentation at the 25th Annual International Symposium on the St. Lawrence / Great Lakes ecosystems, Cornwall, ON, May 30, 2019.

Windle, M.J.S. Fish of the St. Lawrence River. Invited presentation, Science + Nature on Tap Speaker Series, Cornwall, ON, October 10, 2018.

Windle, M.J.S., St. John, J., Ridal, J.J., Brahmstedt, E., Twiss, M., and Lickers, H. Assessing coastal wetlands of the Upper St. Lawrence River using an unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV). Oral presentation at the International Association for Great Lakes Research (IAGLR) 61nd Annual Conference on Great Lakes Research, Scarborough, ON, June 19, 2018.

Windle, M.J.S. Ecosystem impacts of historic flooding on Upper St. Lawrence River aquatic communities. Oral presentation at the 25th Annual International Symposium on the St. Lawrence / Great Lakes ecosystems, Cornwall, ON, May 31, 2018.

Windle, M.J.S. How volunteer diving networks are helping the recovery of the American eels in Ontario. Invited presentation, Ottawa Save Ontario Shipwrecks Annual General Meeting, Ottawa, ON, April 16, 2018.

Windle, M.J.S. Spatial changes in Lake St. Francis fish populations over the past 30 years. Oral presentation at the 24th Annual International Symposium on the St. Lawrence / Great Lakes ecosystems, Cornwall, ON, May 30, 2017.

Windle, M.J.S. Eyes on eels: a citizen scientist/diver collaboration to monitor the endangered American eel in the St. Lawrence River. Invited presentation, Brockville Save Ontario Shipwrecks Annual General Meeting, Brockville, ON, April 22, 2017.

Windle, M.J.S. Hickey, L.A., Lounsberry, J., Lapointe, D., and Ridal, J.J. Characteristics of nearshore fish communities in the Upper St. Lawrence River in relation to biogeochemical stressors. Oral presentation, 2017 Canadian Conference for Fisheries Research, Montreal, QC, January 6, 2017.

Windle, M.J.S. Invasive species and a changing river ecosystem. Invited presentation, Science + Nature on Tap Speaker Series, Cornwall, ON, September 14, 2016.

Windle, M.J.S. Minnows as indicators of ecosystem health in the Upper St. Lawrence River. Oral presentation, 23rd Annual International Symposium on the St. Lawrence / Great Lakes ecosystems, Cornwall, ON, May 25, 2016.

Windle, M.J.S. American eel science and outreach in the St. Lawrence River. Oral presentation, Sino-Canada Workshop for Aquatic Environmental Monitoring, Queen’s University Biological Station, July 18, 2015.

Windle, M.J.S. Using habitat suitability modeling to predict critical American eel habitat in Lake St. Francis, Ontario. Oral presentation, 22nd Annual International Symposium on the St. Lawrence / Great Lakes ecosystems, Cornwall, ON, May 5, 2015.

Windle, M.J.S. A multi-method approach for determining American eel habitat associations in the Upper St. Lawrence River. Oral presentation, Eastern Ontario Eel Workshop, Canadian Wildlife Federation, Kanata, Ontario, March 24, 2015.

Windle, M.J.S. There and back again (to the Sargasso Sea): the incredible life history and recovery of the American eel. Invited presentation, Department of Biology Seminar Series, Clarkson University. Potsdam, NY, February 20, 2015

Windle, M.J.S. The ecology and recovery of the endangered American eel in Ontario. Invited presentation, Biology Department Seminar Series, Trent University. Peterborough, ON, February 11, 2015.

Windle, M.J.S. American Eels in Ontario: the ecology, collapse, and recovery of North America’s most amazing fish. Invited presentation, 26th Annual Save the River Winter Environmental Conference. Clayton, NY, February 7, 2015.

Windle, M.J.S. A multi-method approach for determining American eel habitat associations in the Upper St. Lawrence River. Invited presentation, Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry. Glenora, ON, February 4, 2015.

Razavi, R., and Windle, M.J.S. Sands of time: what sediments in the St. Lawrence River can tell us about the River’s health, past and present. Invited presentation, Science + Nature on Tap Speaker Series, Cornwall, ON, November 5, 2014.

Windle, M.J.S., Delage, K., and Hickey, M.B.C. Evaluating American eel seasonal habitat relationships in the upper St. Lawrence River in relation to ongoing recovery efforts. Oral presentation at the International Eel Symposium 2014: Are Eels Climbing Back up the Slippery Slope? American Fisheries Society 2014 Annual Meeting, Quebec City, QC, August 19, 2014.

Windle, M.J.S. The wonderful world of eels. Keynote Presentation, 21st Annual International Symposium on the St. Lawrence / Great Lakes ecosystems, Cornwall, ON, May 7, 2014.

Windle, M.J.S. The endangered American eel. Oral presentation at the Queen’s University World Fisheries Day Symposium, Kingston, ON, November 23, 2013.

Windle, M.J.S. American eels in the St. Lawrence River. Oral presentation at the Cornwall Library Science and Nature Speaker Series, Cornwall, ON, October 23, 2013.

Windle, M.J.S., Rose, G.A., Devillers, R., and M.-J. Fortin. 2011. Spatial-temporal variations in shifting ecosystems: A Geographically Weighted Regression (GWR) analysis in the Northwest Atlantic. Oral presentation at the 2nd Ecosystem Studies of Sub-Arctic Seas (ESSAS) Open Science Meeting, Seattle, Washington, May 23-26, 2011.

Windle, M.J.S., Rose, G.A., Devillers, R., and M.-J. Fortin. 2008. Geospatial dynamics of Northwest Atlantic cod and crustacean fisheries in the 1990s and 2000s: environmental and trophic impacts. Oral presentation at the Fourth International Symposium in GIS/ Spatial Analyses in Fishery and Aquatic Sciences, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, August 25-29, 2008.

Windle, M.J.S. 2008. What Happened to the cod? An old question, a new approach: The GeoCod Project. Oral presentation at the Queen’s University Limnology Seminar Series, Kingston, Ontario, February 27, 2008.

Windle, M.J.S., Rose, G.A., Devillers, R., Mostafavi, M.-J., Fortin, M.-J., Carette, V., Ruppert, J., Jones, K., McVeigh, R., Engehard, R., and P. LeBlanc. 2007. A GIS-based fisheries database for the Northwest Atlantic: The GeoCod Project. Poster presentation at CoastGIS 07, the 8th International Symposium on GIS and Computer Mapping for Coastal Zone Management, Santander, Spain, October 8-10, 2007.

Windle, M.J.S. 2007. GeoCod: Geomatics for the sustainable management of fish stocks. Oral presentation at the 9th GEOIDE Annual Scientific Conference, Halifax, NS, June 6-8, 2007.

Windle, M.J.S. 2007. GeoCod. Oral presentation at the Inaugural Joe Brown Symposium, St. John’s, NL, February 19, 2007.

Windle, M.J.S., and G.A. Rose. 2006. Do cod lek? Evidence from a Newfoundland spawning ground. Oral presentation at the 7th International Congress on the Biology of Fish, St. John’s, NL, July 18-22, 2006; and oral presentation at the 2006 Aldrich Interdisciplinary Lecture & Conference for Graduate Students, St. John’s, NL, March 4-5 2006.

Windle, M.J.S., Neis, B., Bornstein, S., and P. Navarro. 2006. Fishing occupational health and safety: an international comparative study of regulatory regimes using a risk-based conceptual framework. Oral presentation at the SafetyNet/CARWH international conference entitled Research on Workplace Health and Safety: From the Core to the Margins, St. John’s, NL, June 7-10, 2006.

Windle, M.J.S., Neis, B., and R. Ommer. 2005. Case Study 3: Marine ecosystem variability, human community responses, and terrestrial ecosystem consequences in Newfoundland and Labrador, Canada. Paper presented at the GLOBEC Focus 4 Working Group meeting in Sydney, BC, August 31-September 2, 2005.

Windle, M.J.S., Sherwood, G.D., and G.A. Rose. 2004. Stable isotope and tagging evidence for resident and migrant types of Atlantic cod (Gadus morhua). Oral presentation at the 2004 Canadian Conference for Fisheries Research (CCFFR) in St. John’s, NL, January 8-10, 2004.

Certifications

RPAS Flight Reviewer 2020, Transport Canada
Pilot Certificate – Small RPAS – Advanced Operations 2019, Transport Canada
Ontario Wetland Evaluation System 2019, Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry
Ichthyology Identification Workshop (SAR) 2017, Royal Ontario Museum
Ichthyology Identification Workshop (Introductory) 2015, Royal Ontario Museum
Ichthyology Identification Workshop (Minnow) 2015, Royal Ontario Museum
Ontario Stream Assessment Protocol 2011, Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources