Bert Foquet

bert foquetPostdoctoral Research Associate

I’m an evolutionary biologist that uses molecular tools like RNA sequencing to answer fundamental biological questions about speciation and adaptation, generally working within a phylogenetic framework. I’m broadly interested in the evolution of phenotypic plasticity and its role in speciation. In the Kawahara lab, I’m studying the evolution of silk in Lepidoptera and Trichoptera. I hope to connect the genotype and the phenotype through using a variety of molecular techniques.

Keating Godfrey

keatingPostdoctoral Research Associate

I have a background in ecology and neuroscience and am interested in the roles of genetic variation and neural plasticity in decision-making behaviors in insects. I am specifically interested in host choice and therefore variation in the molecular pathways and neural circuits underlying egg-laying and feeding behaviors. In the Kawahara lab I focus on chemosensory receptor evolution in hawk moths (Lepidoptera, Sphingidae).

Yash Sondhi

Postdoctoral Research Associate

My research is about how moths and butterflies sense the world. I want to understand how their eyes and brains have evolved to complicated visual tasks in light-limited environments. I use an integrative approach looking at their genes, behavior and in the light of evolution to understand how butterflies’ and moths’ visual systems function. Like many other nocturnal animals, moths get disoriented and entrapped by light. I study the effects of light pollution on nocturnal insects and how we can combat this issue. I also help with citizen science and biodiversity monitoring in India.

Yi-Ming Weng

wengPostdoctoral Research Associate

I have a general interest in insect evolution and my research background is in population genetics, evolutionary genomics, and adaptation. I am specifically interested in demographic history and molecular adaptation of alpine insects. I am now studying genome evolution of lepidopteran species in the Kawahara Lab.