Department of Natural History Virtual Research Seminar Series

Fall 2021

September 3, 3p.m.:

Speaker: Fabiany Herrera
Institution: Chicago Botanic Garden
Title: Early Cretaceous Floras from Asia and Northern South America: Gymnosperms against Angiosperms
Description: Newly discovered fossil floras from the Early Cretaceous of Mongolia and China reveal a fascinating gymnosperm-dominated landscape. At the same time, the South American tropics show a remarkable mixture of flowering plants and conifers.
Host: Steve Manchester

September 10, 3p.m.:

Speaker: Juan Daza
Institution: Sam Houston State University
Title: Back to the past, time-traveling with geckos and other lizards
Description: In this talk, we will look at lizards embedded in amber from three different deposits around the world. Each locality can tell us details of lizard diversity in the past. This work has been the result of several research projects where paleontologists and herpetologist work together to interpret these amazing fossils.
Host: Ed Stanley

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September 17, 3p.m.:

***Promotion Seminar***
Speaker: Akito Kawahara
Institution: University of Florida
Title: Evolution and diversification of butterflies and moths
Host: Jon Bloch

September 21, 12p.m.:

McGuire Center “Expanding Horizons in Lepidoptera Research”
Speaker: Andrei Sourakov
Institution: McGuire Center for Lepidoptera and Biodiversity, Florida Museum of Natural History, University of Florida, Gainesville, FL, USA
Title: “From Automeris to Zebra Longwings: probing Lepidoptera diversity with hybridization and wing-pattern manipulation experiments

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September 24, 3p.m.:

Speaker: Selena Smith
Institution: University of Michigan
Title: Dead Plants Do Tell Tales: fossil insights about the evolution of monocot flowering plants
Description: Monocot flowering plants include many ecologically and economically important groups including grasses (wheat, rice, corn), palms, bananas, lilies, orchids, and pondweeds. Understanding their evolutionary history, therefore, is important in order to understand their response to ecological and environmental changes on geological time scales. The fossil record provides concrete data on the past diversity and distribution of extinct monocots, and thus is critical to study. While monocots tend to display cryptic morphologies making them more difficult to identify, progress on applying novel techniques and building a modern phenotype comparative dataset has resulted in better understanding the evolutionary history of several monocot groups. Examples from studies on the Zingiberales (bananas, gingers, and relatives) highlight the benefits of leveraging natural history collections, especially using non-destructive techniques, to better place extinct taxa within the “tree of life” and understand biogeography. Fossils from the Cretaceous-Paleogene boundary of India are revealing details on cryptic extinct lineages of monocots as well as more well-known groups such as the palms. MicroCT analysis has proven beneficial in both studying particular fossils, but also in being able to build modern comparative datasets that help us ascertain the affinities and significance of fossils. The monocot paleobotanical record highlights the complexity of evolutionary history and why inclusion of the fossil record is critical.
Host: MacKenzie Smith

October 1, 3p.m.:

Speaker: Lindsay Campbell
Institution: University of Florida
Title: Leveraging mosquito control district data for biodiversity investigations
Description: Mosquito control districts trap and identify mosquito species on a regular basis for the purpose of monitoring vector abundances and nuisance biting mosquitoes, but these collections have great potential for downstream biodiversity investigations. Unique challenges and opportunities exist to leveraging mosquito control district collections for biodiversity investigations, while also providing valuable opportunities to engage with and learn from knowledgeable stakeholder groups.
Host: Rob Guralnick

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October 5, 9a.m.:

McGuire Center “Expanding Horizons in Lepidoptera Research”
Speaker: Antonia Monteiro
Institution: Department of Biological Sciences, National University of Singapore (NUS)/Yale-NUS College, Singapore
Title: “The developmental origin and evolution of a novel complex trait: butterfly eyespots” (Expanding Horizons in Lepidoptera Research Series)

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October 15, 3p.m.:

Speaker: Justin Dunnavant
Institution: UCLA
Title: Have Confidence in the Sea: Archaeologies of Marronage
Description:
In this talk, I discuss how archaeology has contributed to our understanding of marronage in the Atlantic world. Drawing from contemporary LiDAR and geospatial data in St. Croix and former Danish West Indies, I show how newer archaeological methods expand our understanding of maroon geographies and ecologies while also turning our attention toward maritime seascapes. Theoretically, I engage scholars in Black Geographies to think more critically about the sea/ocean as a site of history, memory, placemaking, and liminality, phenomenologically positioning bodies of water and seafaring vessels as a (de)generative space of Black Atlantic sociality and possibility. We can bridge terrestrial and maritime experiences by employing various “archaeologies” of marronage.
Host: Neill Wallis and Michelle LeFebvre

October 19, 12p.m.:

McGuire Center “Expanding Horizons in Lepidoptera Research”
Speaker: Swanne Gordon
Institution: Department of Biology, Washington University in St. Louis
Title: “Maintaining diversity in nature: Lessons from an aposematic moth”

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October 22, 3p.m.:

Speaker: Cathy McFadden
Institution: Harvey Mudd College
Title: Hidden in plain sight: cryptic biodiversity and regional endemism in the Indo-Pacific zooxanthellate soft corals
Description: Zooxanthellate soft corals (Anthozoa: Octocorallia) are dominant space-occupiers on coral reefs across the Indo-Pacific. Their nominal biodiversity rivals that of the reef-building scleractinians, but the true number of species and their biogeographic distributions remain unclear as a result of our poor understanding of species boundaries in these morphologically plastic organisms. Using molecular approaches to species delimitation, we are revealing high levels of cryptic biodiversity and regional endemism in species groups that have historically been assumed to have pan-Indo-Pacific geographic ranges.
Host: Gustav Paulay

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October 29, 3p.m.:

Speaker: Nesra Yannier
Institution: Carnegie Mellon University
Title: Intelligent Science Exhibits: Transforming Hands-on Exhibits into Mixed-reality Learning Experiences
Description: We have been developing Intelligent Science Exhibits and a mixed-reality platform bridging physical and virtual worlds to improve children’s inquiry-based STEM learning, fostering their curiosity and 21st century skills like critical thinking and persistence. Our award-winning, patented technology adds an intelligent AI layer on top of physical, hands-on exhibits to provide personalized interactive feedback to children and families as they experiment and make discoveries in the real world. In this talk, I will talk about our technology and exhibits as well as the experiments we have conducted comparing the mixed-reality system to a screen-only version and a standard hands-on museum exhibit
Host: Bruce MacFadden and Megan Ennis

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November 5, 3p.m.:

Speaker: Phoebe Stubbefield
Institution: University of Florida
Title: Un-erasure 101: The People of the June 2021 Tulsa Race Massacre Oaklawn Exhumations
Description: The effort to find the victims of the 1921 Tulsa Race Massacre, begun in the 1990s, reached the exhumation phase for the Oaklawn Cemetery site in June 2021. Dr. Phoebe Stubblefield presents the relevance of Oaklawn Cemetery to the history of the race massacre investigation, and describes what she discovered about the cemetery itself, and the people recovered in the recent exhumation.
Host: Gifford Waters

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November 16, 10a.m.:

McGuire Center “Expanding Horizons in Lepidoptera Research”
Speaker: Chris Jiggins
Institution: Department of Zoology, University of Cambridge, United Kingdom
Title: Convergent evolution in butterflies: from chemicals to colour patterns

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November 19, 3p.m.:

Speaker: Chris Sidor
Institution: University of Washington
Title: The original bone heads: paleobiology and evolution of burnetiamorph therapsids
Description: Burnetiamorphs were middle-to-late Permian therapsids (i.e. stem-group mammals) known from fossils across southern Africa and Russia. Notably, were among the first clades of tetrapods to develop a wide array of bony ‘horns’ and other adornments on their skulls, which in other lineages have been considered characteristics enhancing species recognition or mate competition. In this seminar, I will provide an overview of the clade, compare their cranial anatomy to the pachyostosis seen in other clades (e.g., pachycephalosaur dinosaurs), and discuss the macroevolutionary implications of burnetiamorphs being much more speciose than expected given its comparatively small sample size.
Host: David Blackburn

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November 30, 12p.m.:

McGuire Center “Expanding Horizons in Lepidoptera Research”
Speaker: Chase Kimmel
Institution: McGuire Center for Lepidoptera and Biodiversity, Florida Museum of Natural History, University of Florida, Gainesville, Florida, USA
Title: TBA

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December 3, 3p.m.:

Speaker: Post-Doc Lightning Talks: Maggie Hantak, Natalie Claunch, Rob Lasley, Jenna Moore
Institution: University of Florida
Title: TBD
Host: Michelle LeFebvre

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December 7, 12p.m.:

McGuire Center “Expanding Horizons in Lepidoptera Research”
Speaker: Charlie Covell
Institution: McGuire Center for Lepidoptera and Biodiversity, Florida Museum of Natural History, University of Florida, Gainesville, Florida, USA
Title: Seventy-one years with Lepidoptera

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Spring 2021

January 15, 12 p.m.:

Speaker: Hesham Sallam
Institution: American University in Cairo
Title: Breaking new ground in the study of Egypt’s ancient prehistory
Host: Rachel Narducci

Zoom recording

January 22, 3 p.m.:

Speaker: Michael Donoghue
Institution: Yale University
Title: On the value of model clades: Integrative studies of evolution in the flowering plant Viburnum
Host: Doug Soltis

January 26, 12 p.m.:

Thomas C. Emmel Seminar Series presents: Expanding Horizons in Lepidoptera Research
Speaker: Fabien Condamine
Institution: Institut des Sciences de l’ Evolution de Montpelier, France
Title: Genome-wide macroevolutionary signatures of key innovations in butterflies colonizing new host plants

Zoom recording

January 29, 3 p.m.:

Speaker: Lisa White
Institution: University of California at Berkeley
Title: Integrating fieldwork, fossil data, and visualization tools to enhance geoscience instruction for diverse audiences
Host: David Blackburn

Zoom recording

February 5, 12 p.m.:

Speaker: Miranda Lowe
Institution: Natural History Museum, London
Title: Changing Climate: Reuniting diverse narratives in natural science collections.
Host: Jeanette Pirlo

Zoom recording

February 9, 12 p.m.:

Thomas C. Emmel Seminar Series presents: Expanding Horizons in Lepidoptera Research
Speaker: Jeffrey Marcus and Melanie Lalonde
Institution: University of Manitoba, Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada
Title: The Chronicles of Junonia: Evolutionary travels in space and time in an emerging butterfly model system.

Zoom recording

February 12, 3 p.m.:

Graduate Student Lightning Talks
Institution: University of Florida
Host: Maria Vallejo-Pareja

Speakers:
Arianne Boileau, Department of Anthropology
Maria Cortez, Department of Biology
Kristopher Kusnerik, Department of Geology
Shinichi Nakahara, Department of Entomology & Nematology
Daniel Paluh, Department of Biology
Lauren Rowan, Department of Biology

Zoom recording

February 18, 12 p.m.:

Thomas C. Emmel Seminar Series presents: Expanding Horizons in Lepidoptera Research
Speakers: Andre Freitas, Karina L. Silva-Brandão, Eduardo P. Barbosa, Mario A. M. Uribe, Patricia E. Gueratto, Luísa L. Mota, and Simeão S. Moraes
Institution: Universidade de Campinas, Campinas, São Paulo, Brazil
Title: LABBOR: The Lepidoptera Lab at the University of Campinas, Brazil

Zoom recording

February 19, 3 p.m.:

Speaker: Emily Graslie
Title: Lessons from 10 years in Museum #SciComm
Host: David Blackburn

February 23, 12 p.m.:

Thomas C. Emmel Seminar Series presents: Expanding Horizons in Lepidoptera Research
Speaker: Robert D. Reed and Anyi Mazo-Vargas
Institution: Departments of Ecology & Evolutionary Biology, and Entomology, Cornell University, Ithaca, New York, USA
Title: How butterflies make their wing patterns

Zoom recording

February 26, 3 p.m.:

Speaker: Kendra Sirak
Institution: Harvard Medical School
Title: An archaeogenetic exploration of the pre-contact Caribbean
Host: Bill Keegan

Zoom recording

March 2, 12 p.m.:

Thomas C. Emmel Seminar Series presents: Expanding Horizons in Lepidoptera Research
Speaker: Adriana Briscoe
Institution: School of Biological Sciences, University of California, Irvine, CA, USA
Title: Sizing up the small and the large: Reference genomes for butterflies on the extreme ends of genome size

Zoom recording

March 5, 3 p.m.:

Speaker: Dean Adams
Institution: Iowa State University
Title: Phylogenetic comparative methods and the evolution of multivariate phenotypes
Host: Dan Paluh

March 12, 3 p.m.:

Speaker: Jessica Ware
Institution: American Museum of Natural History
Title: Dragonflies, Damselflies & Dictyoptera Evolution
Host: Caroline Storer

Zoom recording

March 16, 12 p.m.:

Thomas C. Emmel Seminar Series presents: Expanding Horizons in Lepidoptera Research
Speaker: Arnaud Martin
Institution: George Washington University, Washington D.C., USA
Title: The genetic basis of color patterning in butterfly wings

Zoom recording

March 19, 3 p.m.:

Speaker: Kadeem Gilbert
Institution: Penn State University
Title: Plant-Regulated Micro-Ecosystems: Pitchers and Leaves
Host: Lauren Whitehurst

Zoom recording

March 26, 3 p.m.:

Speaker: Rayna Bell
Institution: California Academy of Sciences
Title: The diversity and evolution of visual systems across the frog tree of life
Host: Greg Jongsma

March 30, 12 p.m.:

Thomas C. Emmel Seminar Series presents: Expanding Horizons in Lepidoptera Research
Speaker: Callum Macgregor
Institution: Energy and Environment Institute, University of Hull, Kingston-upon-Hull, UK
Title: What can butterflies and moths teach us about conserving nature on a warming planet?

Zoom recording

April 2, 3 p.m.:

Speaker: Susana Magallón
Institution: Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México
Title:The timing of angiosperm evolution, and the complex science of “including fossils”
Host: Nico Cellinese

Zoom recording

April 9, 3 p.m.:

Speaker: Kristina Douglass
Institution: Penn State University
Title: Integrative and inclusive approaches to investigating human-environment dynamics in SW Madagascar
Host: Nicole Cannarozzi

April 16, 3 p.m.:

Speaker: Alejandro Rico-Guevara
Institution: University of Washington
Title: To Feed or To Fight: Nectarivory Energetics and Intrasexually Selected Weapons
Host: Scott Robinson

Zoom recording

Fall 2020

September 4, 3:00 p.m.:

Speaker: Nico Cellinese (promotion seminar)
Institution: University of Florida
Title: Querying Life in a post-taxonomic age: from global patterns to species-level processes.
Host: Jon Bloch

September 11, 3:00 p.m.:

Speaker: Anne Yoder
Institution: Department of Biology, Duke University
Title: Cryptic is as cryptic does: intriguing patterns of speciation in Madagascar’s mouse lemurs​
Host: Dave Blackburn​

September 15, 12:00 p.m.:

Thomas C. Emmel Seminar Series presents: Expanding Horizons in Lepidoptera Research
Speaker: Sarah Steele-Cabrera
Institution: University of Florida
Title: Assessing Reintroduction Techniques for an Endangered Butterfly, Cyclargus thomasi behunebakeri in the Florida Keys

September 18, 3:00 p.m.:

Speaker: Ben Weinstein
Institution: University of Florida
Title: A Computer Vision for Ecology
Host: Rob Guralnick
Click here to watch the Zoom recording.

September 25, 3:00 p.m.:

Speaker: David Blackburn (promotion seminar)
Institution: University of Florida, Florida Museum of Natural History
Title: The evolution of frogs and a plea for natural history.
Host: Jon Bloch
Click here to watch the Zoom recording.

October 2, 3:00 p.m.:

Speaker: Porchia Moore
Institution: University of Florida, School of Art + Art History
Title: ​The Great Fire: Museums In Transition
Host: ​David Blackburn
Click here to watch the Zoom recording.

October 7, 10:00 a.m.:

Thomas C. Emmel Seminar Series presents: Expanding Horizons in Lepidoptera Research
Speaker: Krushnamegh Kunte
Institution: University of Florida
Title: Assessing Reintroduction Techniques for an Endangered Butterfly, Cyclargus thomasi behunebakeri in the Florida Keys
Click here to watch the Zoom recording.

October 9, 3:00 p.m.:

Speaker: Kate Grillo
Institution: University of Florida
Title: Megaliths and milk molecules: new archaeological research on the Pastoral Neolithic cemeteries of the Turkana Basin, northwestern Kenya​
Host: ​Michelle Lefebvre
Click here to watch the Zoom recording.

October 16, 3:00 p.m.:

Speaker: Mauro Galetti
Institution: University of Miami
Title: Defaunation in the Anthrpocene
Host: ​Michelle Lefebvre

October 20, 12:00 p.m.:

Thomas C. Emmel Seminar Series
Speaker: Amanda Hipps
Institution: WildLandscapes International
Title: Ecosystem Underground: Vertebrate and Invertebrate Gopher Tortoise Burrow Commensals in Southeast Florida
Click here to watch the Zoom recording.

October 23, 3:00 p.m.:

Speaker: Richelle Tanner
Institution: University of California, Davis
Title: The effects of environmental variation on ecosystem function in nearshore habitats
Host:​ Megan Ennes
Click here to watch the Zoom recording.

October 27, 12:00 p.m.:

Thomas C. Emmel Seminar Series presents: Expanding Horizons in Lepidoptera Research
Speaker: Kathleen Prudic
Institution: University of Arizona
Title: Precision conservation takes flight in butterflies using citizen and data science
Click here to watch the Zoom recording.

October 30, 3:00 p.m.:

Speaker: Will Crampton
Institution: University of Central Florida
Title: Listening in the dark: Signal evolution in Neotropical electric fishes
Host:​ Larry Page

November 5, 12:00 p.m.:

Thomas C. Emmel Seminar Series presents: Expanding Horizons in Lepidoptera Research
Speaker: Erica Westerman
Institution: University of Arkansas
Title: Why do we like different things? Using butterflies to understand diversity in preferences
Click here to watch the Zoom recording.

November 6, 3:00 p.m.:

Speaker: Janet Buckner
Institution: Louisiana State University
Title: Molecular systematics, macroevolution and adaptive genetics in mammals and birds.
Host:​ Caroline Storer
Click here to watch the Zoom recording.

November 9, 10:00 a.m.:

Thomas C. Emmel Seminar Series presents: Expanding Horizons in Lepidoptera Research
Speaker: Marianne Elias
Institution: Muséum National d’Histoire Naturelle
Title: The puzzle of evolution of transparent wings in aposematic, mimetic butterflies
Click here to watch the Zoom recording.

November 13, 3:00 p.m.:

Speaker: David Skelly
Institution: School of Forestry & Environmental Studies, Yale Peabody Museum of Natural History, Yale University
Title: The Yale Peabody Museum: the history and future of a university natural history museum​
Host: Doug Jones​
Click here to watch the Zoom recording.

November 17, 12:00 p.m.:

Thomas C. Emmel Seminar Series presents: Expanding Horizons in Lepidoptera Research
Speaker: Jaret Daniels
Institution: University of Florida
Title: Safeguarding Royalty: Efforts to Combat Monarch Population Declines in Florida (and Beyond)
Click here to watch the Zoom recording.

November 20, 3:00 p.m.:

Speaker: Rebecca Tarvin
Institution: Department of Integrative Biology, University of California – Berkeley
Title: Fine-scale evolution of aposematism in Epipedobates poison frogs
Host: FLMNH Graduate Students​

December 1, 12:00 p.m.:

Thomas C. Emmel Seminar Series presents: Expanding Horizons in Lepidoptera Research
Speaker: Emilie Snell-Rood
Institution: University of Minnesota
Title: Nutritional constraints on brain and life history evolution across butterflies
Click here to watch the Zoom recording.

December 4, 3:00 p.m.:

Speaker: Jim Leebens-Mack
Institution: Department of Plant Biology, University of Georgia
Title: Plant phylogenomics: elucidating gene, gene family, genome, and organismal evolution
Host: Doug Soltis, Pam Soltis​
Click here to watch the Zoom recording.

December 1, 12:00 p.m.:

Thomas C. Emmel Seminar Series presents: Expanding Horizons in Lepidoptera Research
Speaker: David Steen
Institution: Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission
Title: Using snakes and turtles to learn about conservation and ecology
Click here to watch the Zoom recording.