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BEES Graduate Research Seminar: Nate Shoobs, PhD Candidate
Start Date: 9/26/2019Start Time: 3:30 PM
End Date: 9/26/2019End Time: 5:00 PM

Event Description
Nate Shoobs, PhD Candidate, Department of Biodiversity, Earth and Environmental Science, Drexel University

Biodiversity, Evolution, and Extinction in the Imperiled Galápagos-Endemic Land Snail Genus Naesiotus

Though virtually unknown to the public in comparison to their charismatic vertebrate neighbors, such as Darwin's finches or giant tortoises, the bulimulid land snails of the genus Naesiotus (Gastropoda: Stylommatophora: Bulimulidae) form the most species-rich and phenotypically diverse evolutionary radiation endemic to the Galápagos archipelago.

The magnitude and evolutionary importance of Galápagos bulimulid diversity has largely been veiled by a lack of basic taxonomic work on the group. While the majority of species have been described for over a century, no comprehensive systematic account of the Galápagos bulimulids has ever been completed, despite numerous historical attempts. With 89 available names, 61 validly described species and 10-20 new species in need of description, Naesiotus is long overdue for a systematic revision , especially considering the unique importance of this group for our understanding of the evolutionary dynamics of insular evolutionary radiations.

The necessity of this work is compounded by the fact that, like many other Pacific island land snail faunas, a significant number of Naesiotus species have recently been driven extinct. Most species in the genus have suffered dramatic reductions in population and range sizes since the mid 1970s. Insufficient taxonomic knowledge of both the past and present diversity and distributions of Naesiotus species precludes an actionable understanding of their evolution or their rapid, ongoing extinction.

In this talk, we provide an overview of what is known about the diversity, distribution, and rapid decline of this spectacular, yet poorly known portion of the Galápagos terrestrial fauna drawing from phylogenetic and morphological studies, extensive field surveys, and the examination of all extant museum material.

Next Seminar: October 3rd, 2019, Jason P. Downs, PhD, Delaware Valley University, ANSP Research Associate

Contact Information:
Name: Amanda Leslie
Phone: 215.571.4651
Email: arl98@drexel.edu
Papadakis Integrated Science Building, Room 104, 3245 Chestnut Street, Philadelphia, PA 19104
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