I am an evolutionary biologist interested in the diversity, ecology, and evolution of Neotropical and temperate freshwater fishes and lizards. My research is focused primarily on statistical (model-based) phylogeography, phylogenetic systematics, and macroevolution (e.g. phylogenetic comparative methods). I primarily work on DNA sequence and genomics data from natural populations. This research takes me to some pretty diverse places, including Brazil, Costa Rica, Nicaragua, and the United States, where we conduct field-based collections used to document patterns of biodiversity and conduct molecular studies of ecology and evolution.
I completed my Ph.D. in Integrative Biology in December 2014 after a wonderful tenure in the Jerry Johnson Lab at Brigham Young University, where I used comparative phylogeography and species delimitation to better understand the diversification of the Central American freshwater fish assemblage. Download a copy of my dissertation here.
Currently, I am a Postdoctoral Researcher in the Science Without Borders program of Brazil’s National Counsel of Technological and Scientific Development (CNPq). I am collaborating with multiple institutions to use multilocus data and ddRADseq data from Next-Generation Sequencing as a basis for comparative phylogeography and community phylogenetics studies improving our understanding of the historical to recent mechanisms underlying freshwater fish genetic diversity and distributions in the Brazilian Cerrado (outline highlighted in map of Brazil above). A key focus of this work is testing hypotheses about the impact of drainage rearrangements (e.g. headwater river capture events) and climate change on riverine fish communities in the Planalto Central, in the interior Brazilian Shield.
As a result of my experiences working here in the UnB Herpetology Collection/Lab (Coleção Herpetológica), I am also developing collaborations focused on the comparative phylogeography and conservation of Cerrado herpetofauna, particularly lizard species, but also toads. As part of this work, we are using multilocus and Anchored Phylogenomics data (“target-capture data” generated via a methods also known as anchored hybrid enrichment for massively high-throughput phylogenomics) to understand the historical versus ecological drivers of lizard diversity, as well as the genetic effects of deforestation at the boundary between the Amazon and Cerrado biomes.
- Coleção Herpetológica, Department of Zoology of the University of Brasília (UnB).
- São Paulo State University (UNESP) and its Instituto de Biociências, Letras e Ciências Exatas (IBiLCE)
- Note: Francisco “Kiko” Langeani Neto (UNESP) is my postdoctoral advisor. Guarino Colli (UnB) is the coordinator of my project, and I am presently based in his laboratory in Brasília, which is closer to my field sites.