General interests and research experience.

My research interests encompass many areas but is primarily focused on evolutionary patterns of reef fishes – phylogeography, population genetics and hybridization. I am interested in how biodiversity is generated in marine systems and its application towards informing conservation policies.  Much of my research involves the use of genetic techniques to resolve a variety of questions and I am beginning to get my hands into working with RAD sequencing (and the pain of bioinformatics that accompany it).  

I have participated in many research expeditions that have brought me to many remote areas of the globe including the Phoenix Islands, American Samoa, the Northwestern Hawaiian Islands, Johnston Atoll, Saudi Arabia, the Philippines, Pohnpei (Federated States of Micronesia) and most recently Papua New Guinea. Each of these expeditions gave me the opportunity to form ongoing relationships with an many researchers and has led to collaborations on several projects. 

I have conducted dives as closed-circuit rebreather (CCR) diver for the last 3 years and trained in technical trimix and staged decompression. The use of CCR has allowed to personally explore and conduct research in mesophotic ecosystems and have conducted mesophotic research on 3 international expeditions. To date, my deepest dive is 330 feet (~100 meters) and my longest continuous submerged dive has been more than 4.5 hours. 

My experience thus far been very formative towards my path of becoming an evolutionary biologist. I anticipate the knowledge I have gained and the relationships that I have developed along the way will have long term benefits that will persist beyond my graduate education.

The links to the left provide more detail regarding specific areas of my research.


Photo: Processing samples during the 2013 Red Sea Biodiversity Cruise. Each vial has a unique ID code and contains a tissue sample of each specimen we collect.  A saturated salt solution is used to preserve the tissue and DNA until we get to the lab and can begin genetic analyses. Photo credit: Tane Sinclair-Taylor