Lab Members


JONATHAN DAVIES, AssociateProfessor

Research Interests
I address fundamental questions on the origin and distribution of biodiversity. I have tackled questions ranging from patterns of global extinction risk in plants and animals, the ecological and evolutionary processes structuring species coexistence, to global drivers of pathogen transmission and disease emergence. This research aims to bring new insights into the ecological and evolutionary processes that shape biodiversity patterns across scales.


     
  Emily Meineke [visit my website]
An associate lab member and Postdoctoral Fellow at Harvard University
I am an entomologist who studies interactions between insects and humans, plants, and, more occasionally, microbes. To do this, I use a variety of methods, often in concert, including field experiments, indoor and outdoor chamber experiments, modelling, and museum records. My research often focuses on species and ecosystems of cultural and economic importance to people. Right now, I am using herbarium specimens to determine if and how species interactions have shifted in forests over the past 200 years and with recent climate change.
     
  Lerato Hoveka
Ph.D. Candidate (African Centre for DNA Barcoding, University of Johannesburg/Davies Lab)

Understanding how climate change will affect species distributions, especially for range restricted taxa, is paramount to conserving biodiversity. My research aims to develop climate change integrated strategies for conserving South Africa’s endemic flora. I will assess how climate change will impact the country’s endemic flora and determine whether or not current protected areas will be sufficient for protecting the plant diversity in the future. I will also identify protected area networks that will optimise habitat representation for a large group of endemic plants.
     
 
Jan Gogarten [visit my website]
Ph.D. Candidate
(Chapman/Davies Lab)
A central focus of my research is understanding how environmental and anthropogenic factors may impact primate population viability. One important and understudied factor determining the abundance and survival of wildlife populations is disease. I aim to study how the changing environment will interact with behaviour to influence disease dynamics in wild populations. To this end, I have worked in Kibale National Park, Uganda studying the stability of primate group sizes and longitudinal changes in behaviour of red colobus monkeys (Procolobus rufomitratus). To understand how observed changes in behaviour may impact disease dynamics, I am planning to study viral networks in sooty mangabeys (Cercocebus atys) at Tai Forest, Cote d’Ivoire.
     
 
Max Farrell
Ph.D. Candidate
(Berrang-Ford / Davies Lab)
My research is driven by an interest in the local and global issues that stem from human-wildlife interactions. Previous projects have used field and lab techniques to assess ecological impacts of aquatic invasive species in both the St. Lawrence and Lake Victoria systems. For my Master`s thesis I am developing a model to predict future host shifts of wild ungulate parasites into livestock using phylogenetic relatedness, spatial distributions of wild ungulates, and known host-parasite associations. I hope to identify global regions where these shifts are likely to occur in order to guide policy, surveillance, and development programs aimed at reducing the burden of infectious diseases in humans, wildlife, and domesticated animals.
     
 
Sofia Carvajal Endara
Ph.D. Student (Hendry/Davies Lab)
I am interested in the eco-evolutionary dynamics that are shaping the structure of communities. During my PhD, I will focus my research on the effect of seed predation of Darwin’s finches on plant communities in the Galapagos Islands. I intend to explore how evolutionary changes in a species trait can influence the ecological and evolutionary patterns of a community.
     
     

Alumni

   
     

Ignacio Morales-Castilla [visit my website] Now Postdoctoral Fellow at the Arnold Arboretum, Harvard University
William Pearse [visit my website]
Postdoctoral Fellow. Now Assistant Professor Utah State University
Stephanie Shooner
MSc 2015
Tammy Elliott [visit my website]
Ph.D. 2015
Simeon Bezeng
PhD 2016
Barnabas Daru [visit my website]
Ph.D. 2015
Ria Ghai [visit my website]
Ph.D. 2014
Jean-Philippe Lessard [visit my website] Postdoctoral Fellow
Chelsea Chisholm
M.Sc. 2013
Malie Lessard-Therrien
M.Sc. 2013