Beth Baastians – GK-12 Fellow 2010

BBeth Baastians Fellow 2010

My dissertation research focused on variation in sexual signals and reproductive behavior within and between populations, with the goal of understanding how (and whether) such variation contributes to the formation of new species. Specifically, I studied the mesquite lizard (Sceloporus grammicus) species complex, a taxon of Mexican lizards that live in a variety of habitats and show unusually high levels of chromosomal variation. I found that they also show quite a bit of variation in their throat colors, both within and among populations. As a whole, my dissertation sought to figure out why this is and what the consequences of this variation might be for divergence among populations and possibly speciation. Mostly, this involved driving around Mexico and visiting lots of beautiful mountains, as well as some exciting laboratory behavioral experimentsBethBastiaans_poster2010_thumb

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