Category Archives: adaptation

How the White Sands lizards lost their stripes

In molecular ecology, most of us work with study systems that are messy, uncooperative, or just plain difficult (note the fecal samples incubating on my lab bench). What I wouldn’t give for a nice, elegant study system — like the … Continue reading

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Macroalgal miscellany

It’s been a jam-packed week and I’ve found myself at Friday. Grandiose plans for a post continuing the series on clonality (see here and here) did not come to fruition. But, I was saved with a new article that tumbled … Continue reading

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Genomics of Hybridization – Part 1

In a series of articles, I will discuss recent advances in hybridization genomics – the fundamentals of adaptive introgression, “islands of speciation”, differential gene flow, and linked selection have been discussed in my previous posts (here, here, and also at … Continue reading

Posted in adaptation, evolution, genomics, methods, natural history, next generation sequencing, pedigree, phylogenetics, plants, population genetics, RNAseq, software, speciation, species delimitation, STRUCTURE, theory, transcriptomics | Tagged , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Earthquakes and rapid evolution

The 1964 Alaskan earthquake was landscape-altering in creating/uplifting numerous islands in the Gulf of Alaska, providing an ideal system to study adaptive evolution of diversification in affected species – the threespine stickleback (Gasterosteus aculeatus) being a widely studied example. In … Continue reading

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It’s not you, it’s my genes: Sexual fidelity tradeoffs in prairie voles

Many of you may probably already know the monogamous prairie vole as the yin to the promiscuous montane vole’s yang. Prairie voles are socially monogamous, which is an extremely rare trait among mammals. This trait has made the prairie vole … Continue reading

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Pre-adapted algal ancestors colonized land

The colonization of land by plants 450 Mya marked a major transition on Earth and was one of the critical events that led to the emergence of extant terrestrial ecosystems. Chief among the challenges the terrestrial environment presented for these … Continue reading

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The scent of home

We decided to divide and conquere the west coast of North America in search of more populations of Gracilaria vermiculophylla, as if we didn’t already have enough by Midsummer’s Eve! I headed to my home state – California. I was able to sneak … Continue reading

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Isolation by Aesop’s Fable in NYC mice

The story goes like this: Town Mouse goes to visit his friend in the country. Town Mouse looks down his long nose at the food offered by Country Mouse, so he brings Country Mouse back to the city for a … Continue reading

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Anti-predatory adaptations in sticklebacks and butterflies

Two recent studies analyze character shifts in response to different selection regimes – (1) Mullerian mimicry wing patterns in Heliconius butterflies, and (2) anti-intraguild-predator adaptations in armor and shape of threespine sticklebacks. Hoyal Cuthill and Charleston 2015 Wing patterning genes … Continue reading

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Clinal genomic variation in Drosophila species

Two recent manuscripts describe adaptive evolutions to clinal/latitudinal variations in Drosophila species to supplement a growing wealth of recent studies on geographic variation and adaptive evolution in natural populations of fruitflies (eg. see Kao et al. 2015, Zhao et al. … Continue reading

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