Allison RoyAllison Roy

Research Associate Professor

Unit Leader
US Geological Survey
Massachusetts Cooperative Fish and Wildlife Research Unit


Phone: 413-545-4895

Office: 314 Holdsworth

Websites: Coop Unit WebsiteGoogle Scholar Profile

Massachusetts Coop Unit Biennial Reports

Primary Interests

My research broadly revolves around characterizing anthropogenic impacts on aquatic ecosystems and identifying conservation strategies for effectively protecting and restoring watersheds. The growing human population continues to constrain biotic assemblages in a variety of ways, and understanding the mechanisms by which urbanization and its associated stressors result in degraded biotic assemblages is an overarching challenge of my research program. I am interested in examining effects of altered hydrology, temperature, habitat, water quality, and food resources on stream and lake biota; evaluating factors influencing threatened fish and mussel populations; and assessing potential for management (e.g., forested riparian buffers, green infrastructure, dam removal) to restore aquatic ecosystems.

Current Projects

  • Rethinking lake management for invasive plants under future climate: Sensitivity of lake ecosystems to winter water level drawdowns
  • Impacts of winter lake drawdowns on downstream flows and stream ecosystems
  • Restoring aquatic habitats through dam removal
  • Environmental factors controlling juvenile river herring productivity and emigration
  • Interannual variation in juvenile river herring productivity and responses to restoration
  • Brook floater rangewide conservation and restoration initiative
  • Dwarf wedgemussel propagation and restoration in the Mid-Atlantic and Northeastern US

Courses Taught

Research Concepts (ECO 601)

Aquatic Ecology (NRC 590AE)


Ph.D. Ecology, The University of Georgia

M.S. Entomology, The University of Georgia

B.S. Biology and Environmental Science, Allegheny College

Selected Recent Publications

Zaidel, P.A., A.H. Roy, K.M. Houle, B. Lambert, B.H. Letcher, K.H. Nislow, and C. Smith. 2020. Impacts of small dams on stream temperature. Ecological Indicators.

Ludlam, J.P. and A.H. Roy. 2020. Understanding effects of small dams on benthic metabolism and primary production in temperate forested streams. Fundamental and Applied Limnology. DOI: 10.1127/fal/2020/1260

Weinstein, S.Y., J.A. Coombs, K.H. Nislow, C. Riley, A.H. Roy, and A.R. Whiteley. 2019. Evaluating the effects of barriers on Slimy Sculpin (Cottus cognatus) movement and population connectivity using novel sibship-based and traditional genetic metrics. Transactions of the American Fisheries Society 148: 1117-1131.

Cheney, K.N., A.H. Roy, R.F. Smith, and R.E. DeWalt. 2019. Effects of stream temperature and substrate type on emergence patterns of Plecoptera and Trichoptera from Northeastern United States headwater streams. Environmental Entomology 48:1349-1359.

Marjadi, M.N., A.H. Roy, A. Jordaan, B.I. Gahagan, M.P. Armstrong, and A.R. Whiteley. 2019. Larger body size and earlier run timing increase alewife reproductive success in a whole lake experiment. Canadian Journal of Fisheries and Aquatic Sciences 76:1134-1146.

Carmignani, J.R., A.H. Roy, P.D. Hazelton, and H. Giard. 2019. Annual winter water level drawdowns limit shallow-water mussel densities in small lakes. Freshwater Biology 64:1519-1533.

Sterrett, S., A. Roy, P. Hazelton, B. Watson, B. Swartz, T.R. Russ, L. Holst, M. Marchand, J. Wisniewski, M. Ashton, and B. Wicklow. 2018. Brook Floater Rapid Assessment Monitoring Protocol. U.S. Department of Interior, Fish and Wildlife Service, Cooperator Science Series FWS/CSS-132-2018, Washington, D.C.

Devine, M.T., A.H. Roy, A.R. Whiteley, B.I. Gahagan, M.P. Armstrong, and A. Jordaan. 2018. Precision and effectiveness of a purse seine for sampling age-0 river herring in lakes. North American Journal of Fisheries Management 38:650-662.

Craig, L.S., J.D. Olden, A.H. Arthington, S. Entrekin, C.P. Hawkins, J.J. Kelly, T.A. Kennedy, B.M., Maitland, E.J. Rosi, A.H. Roy, D.L. Strayer, J.L. Tank, A.O. West, and M.S. Wooten. 2017. Meeting the challenge of interacting threats in freshwater ecosystems: A call to scientists and managers. Elementa 5:72.

Rosset, J., A.H. Roy, B. Gahagan, A. Whiteley, M. Armstrong, J. Sheppard, and A. Jordaan. 2017. Temporal patterns of river herring migration and spawning in coastal Massachusetts.

Carmignani, J.R. and A.H. Roy. 2017. Ecological impacts of winter lake drawdowns on lake littoral zones: A review. Aquatic Sciences 79:803-824.

Roy, A.H., K.A. Capps, R.W. El-Sabaawi, K.L. Jones, T.B. Parr, A. Ramirez, R.F. Smith, C.J. Walsh, and S.J. Wenger. 2016. Urbanization and stream ecology: Diverse mechanisms of change. Freshwater Science 35:272-277.

Booth, D.B., A.H. Roy, B. Smith, and K.A. Capps. 2016. Global perspectives on the urban stream syndrome. Freshwater Science 35:412-420.

Bhaskar, A.S., L. Beesley, M.J. Burns, T.D. Fletcher, P. Hamel, C.E. Oldham, and A.H. Roy. 2016. Will it rise or will it fall? Managing the complex effects of urbanization on baseflow. Freshwater Science 35:293-310.

Walsh, C.J., D.B. Booth, M.J. Burns, T.D. Fletcher, R.L. Hale, L.N. Hoang, G. Livingston, M.A. Rippy, A.H. Roy, M. Scoggins, and A. Wallace. 2016. Principles for urban stormwater management to protect stream ecosystems. Freshwater Science 35:398-411.

Roy, A.H., L.K. Rhea, A.L. Mayer, W.D. Shuster, J.J. Beaulieu, M.E. Hopton, M.A. Morrison, A. St. Amand. 2014. How much is enough? Minimal responses of water quality and stream biota to partial retrofit stormwater management in a suburban watershed. PLoS ONE 9: e85011. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0085011

Mayer, A.L., W.D. Shuster, J.J. Beaulieu, M.E. Hopton, L.K. Rhea, A.H. Roy, and H.W. Thurston. 2012. Building green infrastructure via citizen participation: a six-year study in the Shepherd Creek (Ohio). Environmental Practice 14:57-67.

Thurston, H.W., M.A. Taylor, W.D. Shuster, A.H. Roy, and M.A. Morrison. 2010. Using a reverse auction to promote household level stormwater control. Environmental Science and Policy 13:405-414.

Roy, A.H., A.L. Dybas, K.M. Fritz, and H.R. Lubbers. 2009. Patterns of headwater stream loss with urbanization. Journal of the North American Benthological Society 28(4):911-928.

Wenger, S.J., A.H. Roy, C.R. Jackson, E.S. Bernhardt, T.L. Carter, S. Filoso, C.A. Gibson, N.B. Grimm, W.C. Hession, S.S. Kaushal, E. Marti, J.L. Meyer, M.A. Palmer, M.J. Paul, A.H. Purcell, A. Ramirez, A.D. Rosemond, K.A. Schofield, T.R. Schueler, E.B. Sudduth, and C.J. Walsh. 2009. Twenty-six priority urban stream ecology research questions. Journal of the North American Benthological Society 28(4):1080-1097.

Walters, D.M., A.H. Roy, and D.S. Leigh. 2009. Environmental indicators of macroinvertebrate and fish assemblage integrity in urbanizing watersheds. Environmental Indicators 9:1222-1233.

Roy, A.H. and W.D. Shuster. 2009. Assessing impervious surface connectivity and applications for watershed management. Journal of the American Water Resources Association 45:198-209.

Roy, A.H., S.J. Wenger, T.D. Fletcher, C.J. Walsh, A.R. Ladson, W.D. Shuster, H.W. Thurston, and R.R. Brown. 2008. Impediments and solutions to sustainable, watershed-scale urban stormwater management: lessons from Australia and the United States. Environmental Management 42:344-359.

Roy, A.H., B.J. Freeman, and M.C. Freeman. 2007. Riparian influences on stream fish assemblage structure in urbanizing streams. Landscape Ecology 22:385-402.

Roy, A.H., M.C. Freeman, B.J. Freeman, S.J. Wenger, W.E. Ensign, and J.L. Meyer. 2006. Importance of riparian forests in urbanizing watersheds contingent on sediment and hydrologic regimes. Environmental Management 37:523-539.

Roy, A.H., C.L. Faust, M.C. Freeman, and J.L. Meyer. 2005. Reach-scale effects of riparian forest cover on urbanizing stream ecosystems. Canadian Journal of Fisheries and Aquatic Sciences 62:2312-2329.

Roy, A.H., M.C. Freeman, B.J. Freeman, S.J. Wenger, W.E. Ensign, and J.L. Meyer. 2005. Investigating hydrologic alteration as a mechanism of fish assemblage shifts in urbanizing streams. Journal of the North American Benthological Society 24:656-678.

Walsh, C.J., A.H. Roy, J.W. Feminella, P.D. Cottingham, P.M. Groffman, and R.P. Morgan II. 2005. The urban stream syndrome: current knowledge and the search for a cure. Journal of the North American Benthological Society 24:706-723.

Roy, A.H., A.D. Rosemond, D.S. Leigh, M.J. Paul, and J.B. Wallace. 2003. Habitat-specific responses of macroinvertebrates to land cover disturbance: biological consequences and monitoring implications. Journal of the North American Benthological Society 22:292-307.

Roy, A.H., A.D. Rosemond, D.S. Leigh, M.J. Paul, and J.B. Wallace. 2003. Stream macroinvertebrate response to catchment urbanisation (Georgia, USA). Freshwater Biology 48:329-346.