David Plotkin

david doing a crosswordPostdoctoral Research Associate
Email: dplotkin@ufl.edu

My research involves the systematics and morphology of emerald moths (Lepidoptera: Geometridae: Geometrinae). Although most emerald moths have green wings, the particular shade of green is highly variable within the subfamily, resulting in significant diversity in wing color and pattern, including a few instances of phenotypic plasticity. Geometrine wing color is believed to be highly influenced by the expression of a unique pigment called geoverdin; further study of geoverdin will shed light on the evolution of color in this remarkable group of moths.


Keating Godfrey

keatingPostdoctoral Research Associate
Email: rkeating.godfrey@ufl.edu
Website: https://rkeatinggodfrey.weebly.com/

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).



Ana Paula Carvalho

Ana holding a butterflyPostdoctoral Research Associate
Email: apsdecarvalho@gmail.com

I am interested in butterfly sexual dynamics, especially on how male strategies to prevent female re-mating, like mating plugs, can be a result of sexual conflict. I want to analyze the relationship between the morphology of these strategies and the butterfly phylogenetic history in order to understand how these traits evolved. I also want to investigate what factors (ecological, biological, environmental, behavioral) are related to the presence of the mating plugs, why some closely related species diverge on the presence and absence of such structures and how the strategies affect male and female reproductive success.