Darwin Day was founded to celebrate science as an international language much like music. Darwin’s idea of natural selection as a mechanism of evolution has become a central organizing principle in biology.
Tuesday 8 February 2011
Seminar begins at 4pm in S012
(cookies at 3:30)
|“The origin of bird species”|
Dr. Trevor Price
Department of Ecology and Evolution
University of Chicago
Dr, Price studies the causes and consequences of speciation in birds. He combines field research, mostly in India, with molecular lab work (e.g., phylogeny reconstruction) and some theoretical studies. Major questions include: What is the role of songs and plumage patterns in speciation? Why are there twice as many species breeding in the eastern Himalayas as the western Himalayas? What sets range limits of species? How do closely related parapatric species interact at their mutual range limit? Much of our ongoing research is on the genus Phylloscopus, or Old World Leaf Warblers, chosen because multiple coexisting species are extremely similar to each other. By studying the differences in ecology, song, plumages and displays, both within single communities and across regions, we can begin to understand the contribution of these traits to speciation. He is now extending this approach to other groups, and my personal research is on comparing the ecology of all passerines across the Himalayas, combining field studies of their abundance in communities and across elevational gradients with phylogenetic reconstructions.
For more information visit Dr. Price's Laboratory at http://pondside.uchicago.edu/ecol-evol/people/price.html