Male-male competition vs female choice: same-same or something different?
Typically, males compete with one another for access to females, and females choose their preferred suitor among competing males. This precopulatory sexual selection can have profoundly positive effects on population fitness, which could be critical for the health and management of wild and domestic species.
Previously, we have exposed these benefits by reversing sexual selection – by selecting for ‘dud’ males. We have shown, at both the phenotypic and genomic levels, that precopulatory sexual selection as a whole removes mutations.
This project aims to use evolution experiments to disentangle the conflated aspects of male-male competition and female choice, and determine what effects they have on the genome. You will have the opportunity to develop an array of critical skills, including: learning lab protocols and evolution approaches for the most widely-used model system (Drosophila), and developing quantitative and genomic data analytical skills.
- Determine the physical and genetic traits that make males competitive and/or attractive
- Determine the genetic consequences of enhancing and reversing sexual selection on males
As par of this project the successful PhD applicant will:
- Perform lab evolution experiments with Drosophila
- Sequence the genomes of fly populations
- Learn critical skills in quantitative genetic and genomic data analysis.
I am an evolutionary biologists interested in understanding how genetic variation is maintained in face of persistent selection, particularly sexual selection. I primarily work with model organisms in the lab.
Funding and Collaborations
Funding - DP210100868 ($378,087.00)
How to Apply
- To be accepted into the Doctor of Philosophy, an applicant must demonstrate they have sufficient background experience in independent supervised research to successfully complete, and provide evidence of English language proficiency
- Requirements specific to this project -
- Successful applicants would normally have a first class Honours degree in a relevant discipline and often a publication. Applications are invited from Australian or NZ nationals resident within AU/NZ, and international applicants currently resident in AU/NZ.
- Selection is a competitive process and applications will be pre-screened before being formally put into the competitive process at the university level.
- Please send a CV and cover letter to Robert Dugand ([email protected]).
Submit enquiry to research team leader
- Contact the research team leader by submitting an Expression of Interest form via the button below
- After you have discussed your project with the research team leader, contact [email protected] to proceed with your application