Kirby T Nilsen

Image Kirby T Nilsen
Research Scientist

Sustainable Oat Breeding and Genomics

Current research and/or projects

Developing Climate-Resilient Varieties: In response to climate change, we are actively breeding high-yielding, high-quality oat varieties that can withstand varying climate conditions.

Enhancing Disease Resistance: To increase the resiliency of agro-ecosystems, we are focusing on breeding oat varieties with enhanced resistance to priority diseases: Stem rust, crown rust, smut, BYDV and FHB.

Leveraging Genomic Technologies for Improved Breeding: As part of the digital transformation of the agriculture and agri-food sector, we are utilizing genomic technologies such as marker-assisted selection and genomic selection in our oat breeding process.

Creating Value-Added Opportunities: With the goal of advancing the circular economy, we are developing oat varieties with unique traits (e.g., nutritional content, processing qualities) that open up new value-added opportunities.

Professional activities / interests

  • Member of the Prairie Recommending Committee for Oat and Barley 
  • Coordinator of the Western Cooperative Oat Registration Trial

Key publications

  1. K.D. Singh, S.D. Noble, P. Ravichandran, K. Halcro, R. Soolanayakanahally, J. Sangha, E. Brauer, K.T. Nilsen, O. Molina, H.S. Randhawa, R. Ortega Polo, C. Workman, S. Pahari, “Unmanned Ground Vehicle for High-throughput Phenotyping to Quantify Field Crops Characteristics”, NAPPN Annual Conference, West Lafayette, Indiana, USA, February, 2024 (Hybrid);

    2024 - View publication details

  2. NA

    2022 - View publication details

Research facility

2701 Grand Valley Road, P.O. Box 1000A
Brandon, MB R7A 5Y3


Adjunct Professor, University of Manitoba

CSGA recognized Plant Breeder