François Messier

Distinguished Graduate Supervisor Award - Fall 2008

François Messier, professor of wildlife ecology in the Department of Biology, joined the University of Saskatchewan in 1987 as a university research fellow, was appointed professor in 1995 and served as department head from 2003 to 2008.

Throughout his career, training graduate students has been of utmost priority. Messier has supervised 14 PhD and four MSc students, and currently has two PhD and one MSc student pursuing graduate programs. Three of his students now hold academic appointments and five others are senior scientists in research institutions in Canada. His supervision style is based on skill building, including project design, budget planning, personnel management and scientific writing. Teamwork is the name of the game in his lab, and enthusiasm and critical questioning form the essence of his approach with graduate students.

Messier’s major research interest is the population ecology of mammals, specifically species at risk like grizzly and polar bears. His research program is directed at ecological phenomena influencing the population dynamics of large mammals. The research findings of his lab address key conservation issues dealing with human harvest, habitat losses and diseases in mammalian wildlife.