Research


Our research sits at the interface between macroevolution and macroecology, and aims to understand broad-scale patterns of biodiversity. We use cutting-edge phylogenetic comparative methods (usually in R), morphological data collected from museum specimens, phylogenies, ecological data, species geographic range maps, fossils and various larger databases, to investigate a variety of topics. Current research in the group includes analyses rates and modes of evolution, convergent evolution in various taxa (including tenrecs and river dolphins), macroevolutionary analyses with fossil and living species, responses of cetaceans to past and present climate change, and biogeography of Galapagos vertebrates. We are advocates for Open Science and diversity in STEM.

   

   

Current Projects


baleen

A Whale of a Time

Work on cetacean evolution and ecology. Including stable isotope analysis of baleen, convergence in river dolphins, the evolution of hearing in toothed whales, cetacean diversity now and in the past.
Collaborators: Richard Sabin (Natural History Museum), Andrew Jackson (Trinity College Dublin), Clive Trueman (University of Southampton), Erich Fitzgerald (Museum Victoria), Travis Park (Monash University), Anjali Goswami (UCL).
Funding: British Ecological Society and others.

 

Convergence and disparity in vertebrates

Investigating broad-scale patterns of convergence/disparity across vertebrates.
Collaborators:Nick Crumpton, Robert Brocklehurst.

 

Macroevolution/ecology using natural history collections

Using data collected from natural history museum specimens to ask interesting questions in macroevolution and macroecology. Mostly using phylogenetic comparative methods and vertebrate collections (and occasionally forams or bryzoans!)