Behind the paper: using DNA to define conservation units for endangered dragons

This week, we have a new paper published online in the journal Conservation Genetics, with former Honours student Emma Carlson as lead author. The paper is titled “How many conservation units are there for the endangered grassland earless dragons?” Yes, that’s right, dragons! But not the fire-breathing sort. The grassland earless dragon (Tympanocyrptis pinguicolla) is a…

What we’re reading- Feb 27, 2015

Species Delimitation for Endangered Species An important way in which evolution and conservation intersect occurs by identifying species relationships for closely related species, particularly if some members of the group may be threatened or endangered with extinction. By lumping “good” species together, census size will be larger and species may be overlooked to receive local…

Why should we care about cryptic species?

Today’s post is prompted by a conversation I had with a man I sometimes see at the local dog park. Early one morning a few weeks ago, while our pooches played, we discussed species concepts. This man expressed his frustration at his biologist friends’ constant efforts to describe and delimit species. This obsession with naming…