Published: Jan. 28, 2022

2022 Spring Seminar Series Presents

Dr. Martha Munoz photo DR. MARTHA MUÑOZ
Assistant Professor, Department of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, Yale University
Assistant Curator of Vertebrate Zoology, Yale Peabody Museum of Natural History

WHEN:   February 11, at Noon
WHEN:   Seminar will be presented via Zoom

Please email Jacki Craig to receive the Zoom Meeting Link. Forms can be submitted any time before the Seminar but not after 10:00am the day of the seminar.

Behavior is a motor and a brake for evolution.

One of the most striking patterns of evolution is its uneven tempo across the tree of life. Whereas some traits and lineages diversify rapidly, others appear to remain inert over millions of years. But why is this so? What allows some features to achieve evolutionary overdrive, and why do some traits appear to straddle evolution's slow lane? I explore this question by focusing on one of evolution's key architects: behavior. I illustrate how organisms are not the passive targets of selection; rather, through behavior, they can be the agents of selection. Using Caribbean Anolis lizards as a model system, I reveal the signatures of behavior at both micro- and macroevolutionary scales and illustrate the constraints on this phenomenon. Behavior has the power to slow and hasten evolution and, on occasion, it does both simultaneously.

Everyone is welcome to join the seminar, please email Jacki Craig  to receive the Zoom link. Forms can be submitted any time before the seminar but not after 10:00am the day of the seminar.