Happy to be back in Toronto after a busy and successful field season in the Dominican Republic. Some highlights:
– Successfully piloted, honed, and employed our spray-paint mark-recapture survey protocol at several sites.
– Used ground-based LiDAR (!!) to quantify vegetation structure at sites across the country.
– Worked with incredible filmmakers Neil Losin and Nate Dappen, who are developing anole-related film projects.
– Used a drone for the first time to survey potential sites (thanks Neil Losin and Nate Dappen for letting us play with their drone while they visited; we will now buy our own)
– Made a very nice voucher collection for future genetic and microCT studies back in the lab.
Above all, of course, it was great to explore the Dominican Republic!
Special thanks to Cristian Marte, Gabriel de los Santos, Eveling Gabot, Marcos Rodriguez, and Miguel Landestoy for supporting and helping with our work. We’re looking forward to coming back soon!
Here’s a barrage of cellphone photos from the trip:
The Mahler Lab’s first field season is now underway. This summer we’re teaming up with the Wang Lab to kick off an NSF-funded project investigating several dimensions of ecological adaptation in island anole radiations. Simultaneously, Mahler Lab postdoc Luke Frishkoff is launching the first phase of our NSERC-funded work on island anole beta diversity dynamics. We’ll have a full plate for the next 7 weeks as we conduct sampling throughout eastern Hispaniola.
The Mahler Lab made a strong showing at Evolution 2017 in Austin, TX. James Boyko gave an excellent talk on his work on size and shape evolution in Lesser Antillean anoles, and Michael gave a very well-received poster on his research into sensory bias in livebearing fishes.
In addition I was pleased to be an invited speaker in the American Naturalist VP symposium “Convergent evolution, natural history, and the big questions in biology”. Thanks to Anurag Agrawal for the invite, and stay tuned for an associated paper on comparative methods and convergence.
Attendees mob Michael Foisy at the poster session.
James Boyko enlightens the audience of his lightning talk.
Check out our new American Naturalist paper describing Anolis landestoyi, a new Dominican anole that looks like it should be from Cuba. This lizard was first spotted by naturalist extraordinaire Miguel Landestoy, and it provides fresh evidence for among-island ecomorphological matching in anoles. The article is here. Check it out!
Congrats to James Boyko for winning an SGS Conference Grant! James will use this well-deserved $$ to present his work on size and shape evolution in Lesser Antillean anoles at this year’s Evolution meeting in Austin, TX.
Phenom work study student Chris Boccia is on a tear this spring and has picked up yet another competitive award – this time the prestigious ASSU Graduating Student Leadership Award. Congrats Chris!
Headed to Boston this week to give a seminar at UMass Boston and catch up with old friend and colleague Liam Revell. Thanks for the invite Liam!!
Congratulations to lab members Michael Foisy and Chris Boccia for winning coveted NSERC CGS-M graduate fellowships! In addition to the prestige, these federal awards support a full year of MSc research. Big congrats guys!
I’m pleased to welcome MSc candidate Michael Foisy to the lab. Michael isn’t an entirely new face, as he’s been in EEB since Fall 2015 as a masters student in Helen Rodd’s lab and I’ve been on his thesis committee from the start. Happily, Michael and Helen have invited me to be a co-supervisor, so the lab gains Michael in the bargain. Stay tuned for great phylogenetic comparative work from Michael on sensory bias in guppies!
Honored to have been an invited speaker at the University of Michigan’s Early Career Scientists Symposium this weekend. This year’s topic was Frontiers in Community Assembly, and we had an outstanding lineup. Check out the program and poster here.