Speciation and Parasites in Pacific and Welcome Swallows
I am lucky enough to be a collaborator on this research project lead by Dr. Elizabeth Scordato at Cal-Poly Pomona.
We are studying patterns of population structure, divergence, and adaptation to human environments in Pacific and Welcome Swallows across southeast Asia. Liz and I recently sampled swallows in Malaysia, Borneo, Japan, and Fiji, with more sampling planned for the next year.
We are using whole genome sequencing data from swallows to understand their evolutionary history and patterns of divergence across their range. My particular focus in this research project is to examine their parasites. Because parasites have large population sizes and fast generation times, they typically evolve "faster" than their hosts. I am hoping to use genomic data from host-specific parasites to gain additional insights into the connectivity and evolutionary history of Pacific and Welcome swallow populations.
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