Our Biologist
Dr. Brian Kotak, PhD

Gangler’s is proud to introduce Dr. Brian Kotak, an integral part of Ganglers’ Wilderness and Interpretive North Seal Area and Courage Lake Widrness Tours. Dr. Brian’s knowledge is central to these incredibly informative tours that span from everything historical, animal, botanical to ecological, and he also serves as Ganglers’ resident staff biologist and your personal Wilderness tour host. Dr. Brian’s enthusiasm and low-key manner in sharing his knowledge and passion for the outdoors add to an already incredible experience. We invite you to enjoy learning about the vast ecological significance and the facinating history of this unique far-northern Canadian watershed.

Brian’s Background

Brian is President of Miette Environmental Consulting, a small firm focused on environmental monitoring and impact assessment, and environmental education. Brian blends his knowledge, experience and passion for wildlife, plants and water in the boreal forest with exceptional communication skills to educate people of all ages in the wise use, protection and management of our natural resources.

With degrees in Ecology, Botany and Biological Sciences, he has a well-rounded knowledge of the ecology of the boreal forest, both in terms of terrestrial and aquatic environments, plants and animals. He has worked on projects involving monitoring of wildlife (moose, caribou, wolves, deer) and fisheries, water quality, forest ecology and climate change. He was an active research scientist on Lake Winnipeg (Manitoba) and Lake of the Woods (Ontario), studying toxic algae, and has appeared on Canada’s national environment/science program, ‘The Nature of Things with David Suzuki’ as part of his work.

Brian has developed several interpretive/educational trail systems in eastern Manitoba and even helped develop a cultural-eco tourism business with an Indigenous community in the Talamanca mountains of Costa Rica. Brian is also an avid fisherman, hunter, photographer, observer and researcher of all things boreal.

As part of a contract to Miette, Brian is the General Manager of the Manitoba Model Forest (MBMF), a non-profit organization dedicated to involvement of stakeholders in research, monitoring, and provincial policy-setting as it relates to the management of the boreal forest in eastern Manitoba. As part of his responsibilities to the MBMF, Brian chairs the Committee for Cooperative Moose Management, a multi-stakeholder committee dedicated to respective collaboration between Indigenous communities, licensed hunters and outfitters, trappers, natural resource industries and the provincial government. Brian is currently authoring a report on the status of the moose population in the region and leading the moose committee through the development of moose management recommendations to the provincial government. Brian has managed the Eastern Manitoba Woodland Caribou Advisory Committee, assisting in multi-stakeholder input into caribou recovery and management plans. He was worked with several First Nation communities on traditional knowledge studies.

The North Seal River area simply astounds me. I am absolutely amazed at the new finds we are constantly discovering as we explore the area more and more. It is truly a unique area, with an amazing amount of diversity. I am very pleased to be part of Gangler’s Wilderness Adventures and look forward as we explore and open this incredible area with our guests.

Aerial view of a float plane flying over Gangler's North Seal Lodge

North Seal Knowledge

with Dr. Brian

Indulge yourself in the ancient heritage of a land many are not aware even exists.

Dr. Brian Kotak’s Curriculum Vitae

Education

Ph.D. 1995. Department of Biological Sciences, University of Alberta, Edmonton, Alberta, Canada. Thesis topic: water quality and liver and neurotoxins produced by algae.

M.Sc. 1990. Department of Botany, University of Manitoba, Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada. Thesis topic: marsh and wetland ecology in Delta Marsh, Manitoba.

B.Sc. Honors, 1st class. 1987. Ecology Program (Joint Botany-Zoology), University of Manitoba, Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada.

Teaching Experience

Dr. Kotak has taught full courses in Limnology (aquatic ecology) and Experimental Zoology at the University of Alberta, as well as providing guest lectures in a number of wildlife management, aquatics and ecosystem management courses at the University of Manitoba, University of Winnipeg, University of Missouri, University of Poland and University of Alberta. Until recently, Dr. Kotak was an adjunct professor at the University of Manitoba.

Awards

1992-95 Eco-Research Doctoral Fellowship (held at University of Alberta) 1992-95 University of Alberta Walter H. Johns Fellowship 1994 University of Alberta Teaching Excellence Award

What’s Next

Tours

The amazing features that attract today’s travelers to the North Seal River area offered the same attraction to Indigenous peoples thousands of years ago.

Learn more about our tours

Our Trips

Each trip is designed to bring you a unique slice of the Sub-Arctic. Let us assist you in choosing your perfect adventure!

Learn more about our trips