recent long

Postdoc position available                                                     Feb 23rdpale_line

We are looking for a postdoc who wants to work on developmental bias and its evolutionary implications. More information on the position and how to apply can be found here.


What’s new in lizard social evolution?                                   Feb 22ndpale_line

Egernia_familyA series of recent papers (Halliwell et al. 2017, Halliwell et al. 2017, Botterill-James et al. 2017) show how good places to live shapes family life in Egernia lizards. Our research – headed by Geoff and his students Ben and Tom – have revealed that the distribution of crevice sites influence group size, polygyny, and the opportunity for sexual selection. This also affects the offspring, because the distribution of adults determine the costs and benefits of dispersal. Read more...


New group members!                                                              Jan 28thpale_line

We are very happy to welcome Mara Ruiz Miñano and Théo Ducos to the group. Mara is a new PhD student at the University of Tasmania, supervised by Geoff and Tobias. Mara will join our research project on the causes and consequences of hybridization in wall lizards. This means she will split her time between Lund and Tasmania, with a fair bit in between catching lizards in Italy. Théo will also be working on wall lizards for his MSc project, which continues our collaboration with Patrizia D'Ettorre at the University of Paris 13.


This View of Life                                                                      Jan 24thpale_line

Tobias is interviewed by David Sloan Wilson on This View of Life. The piece can also be read on our EES blog, together with recent posts by Massimo Pigliucci, Kim Sterelny, Armin Moczek and others.


Hannah hands in her thesis!                                                  Dec 14thpale_line

Hannah's thesis is a detailed study of the causes and consequences of sexual selection during secondary contact in wall lizards. Two of the chapters are published - in Ecology Letters and Functional Ecology - and the other two will hopefully be accepted shortly. Hannah is formally a University of Tasmania student so she cannot look forward to a public defense but we hope the two examiners will like what they read. We certainly did! Many congratulations, Hannah!


Webpage launch                                                                     Dec 13thpale_line

The Extended Evolutionary Synthesis webpage is now up and running. In addition to keeping you up to date with the research funded by our grant, the blogs, visual and audio are useful resources for those interested in the relationships between development, ecology, and evolution.

Please also check out Geoff’s and Erik’s webpage at the University of Tasmania, which has beautiful photos and information on our collaborative projects on skinks and wallies.


Alfredo Rago joins us as postdoc!                                            Nov 3rdpale_line

alfredo_ragoAs pointed out by Scott Gilbert, the environment is a “normal agent of development”. But how do organisms evolve to integrate features of the environment into their development? And how does that affect their ability to evolve further? These are some of the questions that Alfredo will address in his research, which is a close collaboration with computer scientist Richard Watson at the University of Southampton. We are very excited to have Alfredo here on what promises to be an outstanding project! Read more...


Are jumping genes driving the radiation of Anolis lizards?    Oct 13thpale_line

A new study by Nathalie Feiner brings a fresh perspective on the famous adaptive radiation of Anolis lizards. The paper, published this week in the Proceedings of the Royal Society of London B, reveals that speciation events are accompanied by accumulation of DNA sequences that can copy and paste themselves within the genome. Such transposable elements (TEs), popularly referred to as jumping genes, have long been suspected to contribute to evolutionary diversification. Read more...


Evolution of Loci workshop in Paris                                          Oct 4thpale_line

In September Antonio participated in the Loci of Evolution meta-analysis workshop. The aim of the workshop was to brainstorm ideas for the use and improvement of Gephebase - a database created by Arnaud Martin (George Washington University) and Virginie Orgogozo (Institut Jacques Monod). Read more...


8th World Congress of Herpetology in China                        Sept 21stpale_line

The World Congress of Herpetology (WCH) is held every four years, and this time it took place close to Hangzhou, whcin China, from August 15-20, 2016. Yang and Nathalie participated in the congress and Tobias was on the scientific committee. Read more...


English wall lizards look inbred                                            Aug 30thpale_line

Our new paper in Molecular Ecology makes use of 21 introductions of wall lizards into England to show how founder history affects the loss of genetic diversity. We also show that early embryonic mortality is very high in non-native populations compared to native ones. Read more...


Euro Evo Devo meeting                                                           Aug 5thpale_line

The group was well represented at the 2016 Euro Evo Devo meeting in a beautiful and sunny Uppsala. Nathalie gave a talk on the role of transposable elements in the Anolis lizard radiation, and Antonio presented results from his PhD thesis, which reveal how some turtles evolved the ability to withdraw their heads into the shell. Read more...


New group members!                                                            July 21stpale_line

Alex2We welcome new PhD student Alexander Hegg! Alex will be working on phenotypic plasticity and non-genetic inheritance in water fleas. What is the origin of mechanisms of non-genetic inheritance, how do they evolve, and what does it all mean for the ability of Daphnia to rapidly adapt to novel environments? These are the questions that Alex will address in his research – we look forward to see what answers he’ll give us! Konstantinos Plavos also joins us for his MSc project. Co-supervised by Panayiotis Pafilis at the University of Athens, Konstantinos’ aim is to establish the phylogeographic pattern of ventral colour polymorphism in wall lizards, and to test some ideas about what could maintain this variation.


Summer Lab News in Brief                                                       July 6thpale_line

Several lab members participated in the Mediterranean Lizards meeting in Cyprus, while others are still busy with field work in the Pyrenees. Back in Lund the Anolis baby boom continues with twelve species breeding, and in the Daphnia room hundreds of water flea mothers are doing their best to make their kids locally adapted. Read about our summer news...


Congrats Prof. Tobias                                                             June 29thpale_line

TProfCakeobias has been promoted to Professor of Evolutionary Biology! The whole group congratulates Tobias for reaching this milestone, we know you are just in the beginning of an excellent career :-)!



Open PhD position                                                               April 28thpale_line

Are you interested in the relationship between developmental plasticity, maternal effects and evolution? If you also have a strong interest in evolutionary theory and a background in ecology you should consider applying. The details on the position and how to apply can be found here. For informal enquiries, please email Tobias.


Fieldwork completed                                                            April 26th

Now on its fifth year, the spring field trip to Italy surely counts as a tradition. But for Hanna and Yang it was the first one and finally they got to see where all those DNA samples come from! This year we were also very much helped by Italian colleagues and despite some bad weather towards the end of the trip, we completed two new transects across the hybrid zones.  Read more...


Good news!!!                                                                           April 8thpale_line

Tobias Uller and Kevin Laland have received a £5.7 million grant from the John Templeton Foundation. The project brings together an international multi-disciplinary team of 50 world-renowned experts centered at eight institutions. The aim is to study evolution with alternative perspectives on the relationships between genes, organism, and environment. Tobias is the Project Co-Leader, making Lund University one of the main beneficiaries and a centre for the initiative. Read more...


Field season starts                                                                  April 3rdpale_line

Nathalie started the field season 2016 with an 8-day trip to Florida for her project on the evolution of limb development in Anolis lizards. After doing lab-based Anolis research for almost three years, it was about time to meet these fascinating lizards in the wild! Nathalie joined Dan Warner and his research group (University of Auburn) at their Palm Coast field site. Ten (!) Anolis species have been introduced to Florida from the Caribbean islands, which makes it a hotspot for convenient field work. Read more...





  • Niche construction and conceptual change in evolutionary biology. Br J Philos Sci, in press
  • Female reproductive investment in response to male phenotype in wall lizards and its implications for introgression. Biol J Linn Soc, in press
  • Habitat saturation promotes delayed dispersal in a social reptile. Behav Ecol 2017
  • Effects of low-oxygen conditions on embryo growth in the painted turtle, Chrysemys picta. Integr Zool 2016
  • Experimental hybrid zones reveal causes and targets of sexual selection upon secondary contact. Funct Ecol 2016