Photo of Andrew Simons

Andrew Simons

Professor, Graduate Program Advisor

Degrees:B.Sc. (Guelph), M.Sc. (McGill), Ph.D. (Dalhousie)
Phone:613-520-2600 x 3869
Office:Office: 4440A CTTC Building
Lab: 227 Nesbitt Building
Website:Visit my lab website


For detailed information, please visit the lab website (link above).  My students and I focus on how organisms adapt to changing environments.  We use a variety of organisms both in the field and under controlled environments to address fundamental questions about the evolution of adaptive phenotypic plasticity and bet-hedging traits under fluctuating environments.

Especially useful as model organisms are monocarpic (i.e. reproduce once per lifetime) plants, such as Lobelia inflata; and plants with rapid generation times such as Spirodela polyrhiza, a member of the duckweed subfamily (Lemnoideae) which are the smallest flowering plants on the planet. We are concerned, too, with the genetic mechanisms underlying expression of life-history traits.

Selected Publications

Morris, R.S., M.E. Compton, and A.M. Simons. 2020. Birth order as a source of within-genotype diversification in the clonal duckweed, Spirodela polyrhiza (Araceae: Lemnoideae). Biological Journal of the Linnean Society (In press).

Hitsman, H.W. and A.M. Simons. 2020. Latitudinal variation in norms of reaction of phenology in the greater duckweed Spirodela polyrhizaJournal of Evolutionary Biology 33:1405-1416.

Wen, L. and A.M. Simons. 2020. Delusions of grandeur: Seed count is not a good fitness proxy under individual variation in phenology. Journal of Evolutionary Biology. 33:1039-1049.

Côté, K. and A.M. Simons. 2020. Genotype-environment interaction and the maintenance of genetic variation: an empirical study of Lobelia inflata (Campanulaceae). Roy. Soc. Open Sci. 7:191720.

Brady, S. P., …, A.M. Simons et al. 2019. Causes of maladaptation. Evolutionary Applications 12:1229-1242.

Van Wieren, J.F., and A.M. Simons. 2019. Prescribed fire increases seedling recruitment in a natural pitch pine (Pinus rigida) population at its northern range limit. Natural Areas Journal 39:308-318.

Brady, S. P., …, A.M. Simons et al. 2019. Causes of maladaptation. Evolutionary Applications 12:1229-1242.

Mejbel, H.S., and A.M. Simons. 2018. Aberrant clones: birth order generates life-history diversity in Greater Duckweed, Spirodela polyrhizaEcology and Evolution 8:2021-2031.

Fukase, J., and A.M. Simons. 2016. Increased pollinator activity in urban gardens with more native flora. Applied Ecology and Environmental Research 14:297-310.

Hughes, P.W.D., and A.M. Simons. 2015. Microsatellite evidence for obligate autogamy, but abundant genetic variation in the herbaceous monocarp Lobelia inflataJournal of Evolutionary Biology 28:2068-2077.

Hughes, P.W.D., and A.M. Simons. 2014. Changing reproductive effort within a semelparous reproductive episode. American Journal of Botany 101:1323-1331.

Graham, J.K., M.L. Smith, and A.M. Simons. 2014. Experimental evolution of bet hedging under manipulated environmental uncertainty in Neurospora crassaProceedings of the Royal Society B 281: 20140706.

Simons, A.M. 2014. Playing smart vs. playing safe: the joint expression of phenotypic plasticity and potential bet hedging across and within thermal environments Journal of Evolutionary Biology 27:1047-1056.

Hughes, P.W.D., and A.M. Simons. 2014. Secondary reproduction in the herbaceous monocarp Lobelia inflata: time-constrained primary reproduction does not result in increased deferral of reproductive effort. BMC Ecology 14:15.

Hughes, P.W.D., and A.M. Simons. 2014. The continuum between semelparity and iteroparity: Plastic expression of parity in response to season length manipulation in Lobelia inflata. BMC Evolutionary Biology 14:90.

Hughes, P.W, A.F. Jaworski, C.S. Davis, S.M. Aitken and A.M. Simons. 2014. Development of polymorphic microsatellite markers for Indian Tobacco Lobelia inflata (Campanulaceae)  Applications in Plant Sciences 2: 1300096.

Simons, A.M. 2011. Modes of response to environmental change and the elusive empirical evidence for bet hedging. Proceedings of the Royal Society B 278:1601-1609.