The “Animal Biodiversity, Evolution and Systematics” Group includes 4 researchers (integrated members), three holding post-doctoral grants. The group also includes 1 research grant holder hired by specific research projects and 5 collaborators.
Using diverse animal taxa from Iberia and southern Africa, the sun-group aims to:
(i) Examine the role of biogeography in the evolution of species;
(ii) Address the role of intrinsic biological and extrinsic environmental factors in shaping populations' genetic structure;
(iii) Study the impact of short-term events, like human-induced habitat changes and severe droughts, on the genetic variability of threatened animals;
(iv) Investigate the evolutionary processes leading to speciation, in particular, the genomic regions involved in the formation and persistence of incipient species;
(v) Use natural history collections to analyse biodiversity patterns in time and space, especially with respect to environmental and human factors.
Additionally, this sub-group is also deeply involved in:
(i) Promote digital accessibility of biodiversity data and produce associated digital contents for education and outreach;
(ii) Develop outreach projects such as exhibitions, conferences and other events for general audiences;
(iii) Promote informal education projects on natural sciences.
Khalife, A., Keller, R.A., Billen, J., Hita-Garcia, F., Economo, E.P. & Peeters, C. (2018) Skeletomuscular adaptations of head and legs of Melissotarsus ants for tunnelling through living wood.Frontiers in Zoology, 15, 30. DOI:10.1186/s12983-018-0277-6 (IF2018 2,982; Q1 Zoology)