to the Wayne Maddison Lab at the University of British Columbia
Departments of Zoology & Botany, UBC, Vancouver, BC, Canada +1-604-827-5249
Our people are linked at left
Our projects are:
and Computational phylogenetics
Phylogenetic biology seeks to reconstruct the genetic history that gave rise to life's diversity, and then find patterns in this history that reveal evolutionary processes. We do theoretical work on analytical methods to reconstruct and interpret evolutionary history, and we build computer programs to make methods available.
phylogeny and systematics
There are more than 5000 species of jumping spiders (Salticidae), but many more species are yet to be found or described. Phylogenetic relationships within this diverse family, and hence its classification, are largely unresolved, although we have made considerable progress in recent years outlining the broad structure of salticid phylogeny, using primarily molecular techniques guided by long experience with morphological characters.
Biogeography and adaptive radiations — Molecular phylogenetics reveal that major salticid clades have diversified independently on different continents. We are investigating whether these radiations show consistent patterns of ecomorph convergence.
Behaviour and chromosomes — The acute vision of salticid spiders has enabled highly complex visual courtship displays. We are studying in particular Habronattus, whose approximately 100 species show a striking diversity of male behaviours and ornaments, to investigate the how these behaviours evolves. We are also studying chromosome evolution in salticids.