Weird morphologies, behaviors, and physiologies have long fascinated both the scientific community and the general public. For example, just try to get off the couch after turning on Planet Earth and seeing the male birds of paradise turn themselves into ultra-black dancing discs to attract mates. Yet, how such novel traits evolved remains a mysteryâ€" one that even Charles Darwin himself had a hard time answering. In this talk, Emilie and Michelle will discuss using genomic, behavioral, and morphological data to investigate how new traits evolved in the scale-eating and snail-eating pupfish (Cyprinodon). They find that what appear to be new, singular traits like scale-eating or snail-eating often involve a suite of changes across multiple characters and the repurposing of old evolutionary material.
Speakers: Emilie Richards and Michelle St. John, UC Berkeley
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