Tue 21 Apr 2015: 11am – Ng Shengrong on “Influence of Pleistocene climate change on patterns of gene flow across the avifauna of Wallacea”

Qualifying Examination

“Influence of Pleistocene climate change on patterns of gene flow across the avifauna of Wallacea”

Nathaniel Ng Shengrong
Graduate Student,
Department of Biological Sciences
National University of Singapore

Tuesday 21 April 2015: 11.00am
Seminar Room 1 (S2-0414)
Supervisor: Asst Prof Rheindt, Frank Erwin

Abstract – Wallacea hosts extremely high levels of vertebrate endemism and is widely recognized as one of the world’s leading biodiversity hotspots. One of the primary mechanisms leading to the rich biodiversity of the region is its complex earth history. Pleistocene glaciation events in the last 2.5mya have subjected the region to sequential ~120 m sea level changes, resulting in the repeated appearance and disappearance of land bridges between some of its landmasses. This has subjected populations to alternating cycles of isolation and contact, turning Wallacea into a natural laboratory for studies on biogeography, evolution, and speciation.

The aim of my PhD thesis is to investigate patterns of gene flow and divergence in the avifauna of the region in the context of Pleistocene sea level fluctuations, using a combination of genome-wide SNP analyses and bioacoustic techniques.

All are welcome.

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