Biology, Stanford University

Banner image of elephants

Dr. Elizabeth Hadly

Department of Biology, Stanford University
Stanford, CA 94305-5020

650.725.2655 (phone), 650.723.6123 (fax)

Leopold Leadership Fellow

Graduate students

I'm a fourth year doctoral student, working with Dr. Elizabeth Hadly and Dr. Gretchen Daily. I'm taking an evolutionary perpective to understand how and why some species are able to survive human modification of the environment, while others can only survive in unaltered habitats. I'm using two closely related species of Costa Rican terrestrial direct developing frogs as a model, and assessing how genotypic and phenotypic differences between the species correlate with habitat use in the field. Full project description.

Luke Frishkoff

I am a fourth-year doctoral student interested in patterns of diversification and extinction in insular communities. My research focuses on the herpetofauna of the Caribbean, with an emphasis on Lesser Antillean lizard communities. More specifically, I am integrating paleontology with molecular biology in order to understand how diversity has changed over geologic time scales. The natural and cultural history of the Lesser Antilles render it an exemplary model system to study how diversification and extinction processes are influenced by ecological and geological perturbations alike. With this in mind, I hope that my work will inform conservation efforts in this biologically rich region.

I'm a third year PhD student with broad interests ranging from population diversification and adaptation to ecoimmunology and conservation. I am currently working on a project examining how various aspects of a bat's ecology affect its exposure to parasitism and disease and how this in turn shapes its immunogenetic evolution, looking within populations and across species. By combining field work and genetic techniques, I hope to learn more about the evolution of these ecologically important species which also serve as important vectors and reservoirs of emerging diseases. Before graduate school my research included projects researching macroevolutionary patterns of convergence and phylogenetic signal in the toepads of Anolis lizards and the effect of resource availability and other environmental factors on white blood cells and immune function in tuatara, a threatened, endemic, New Zealand reptile.

Hannah Frank
Curriculum Vitae

I am a third year Ph.D. student interested in evolutionary genetics. Although my interests are broad, I am studying the impact of changing environmental and geologic forces on the population genetics of the tuco-tuco, a rodent genus endemic to South America. Before joining the lab at Stanford, I conducted my undergraduate thesis research at Harvard, where I researched the genetic basis of migration in monarch butterflies, focusing on elucidating the population structure of the two monarch subspecies and determining potential genes contributing to the disparate migratory behaviors of the two subspecies.

Jeremy Hsu

I am a third year PhD student studying pikas (small mammals related to rabbits - the inspiration for Pikachu) in the Indian Himalayas. My work is aimed at identifying the genetic adaptations that underlie Himalayan pikas’ ability to survive in severely hypoxic conditions. Himalayan pikas are being forced to higher elevations due to climate change but some of these species may not have the genetic adaptions necessary to survive the hypoxia of their new higher elevation habitat. Through a candidate gene approach, looking at mitochondrial genes and hemoglobin genes, as well as a less targeted genomics approach, I am hoping to identify genetic adaptations to hypoxia in different Himalayan pika species. By looking at how adaptations are distributed across the pika phylogeny I hope to gain new insight into the mechanisms driving evolution at high altitudes.


Katie Solari

I am a second year PhD student interested in the origin and conservation of mammalian diversity, with an emphasis on the evolutionary trends of insular and venomous mammals. My research uses Eulipotyphlan mammals ("true" insectivores including hedgehogs, shrews, solenodons, and moles) to understand broader processes of molecular evolution, clade diversification, and evolutionary responses to past and present environmental change (climatic and anthropogenic). I am focusing on solenodons, the only surviving endemic insectivores of the Caribbean, to combine my interests in conservation and evolution, as they are venomous, evolutionarily distinctive, and highly endangered due to deforestation and predation by invasive species. My undergraduate research at Cornell applied phylogeography and population genetics to determine that insular muskrats in the Gulf of ME were introduced by humans.

Alexis Mychajliw
Curriculum Vitae

I am a first year graduate student broadly interested in macroecology, evolution, animal behavior, and biogeography. My undergraduate research project at UC Berkeley focused on the cranial morphology of American pika, a small mammal that is restricted to montane habitat.

I am also the web designer/webmaster. Please contact me regards to matters related to this website.

Visiting Scholars

I am a doctoral student in the Ecology and Evolutionary Biology Program at Stanford University working with Gretchen C. Daily and Paul R. Ehrlich in the Center for Conservation Biology. My research primarily focuses on quantifying the populations, community assemblages, and species interactions of organisms in human-dominated landscapes under the framework of countryside biogeography. Much of my work centers on predictive models, habitat use, and metapopulation and metacommunity dynamics of birds and bats in Coto Brus, Costa Rica. This work is largely informed by the need to crystallize a firm link between diversity of life on the planet, conservation biology, ecosystem services, and natural capital. Specifically, I am interested in fine-scale tradeoffs between the conservation of biodiversity and agricultural production in the tropics.

Additionally, with different disciplinary goals and methods, I am interested in reframing the red in tooth and claw narrative of the natural world by examining cooperation between animal communities, social groups, and genders. In collaboration with Joan E. Roughgarden I am investigating the evolution and ecology of social reproductive behavior under the framework of social selection, an alternative to sexual selection theory and its corollaries. I am interested in relating the evolutionary behavioral ecologies of mutualism, behavior in the face of resource limitations, and social reproductive behavior with the human predicaments of consumption, population policy, and gender inequality.

Chase Mendenhall
Feature Story

I am a master student in a European program. I collaborated with Hadly Lab for my thesis project. I am interested in studing how population respond to ecological stress. My previous research projects explored the evolution and diversity of Extremophile.

Zhen Zhou

I volunteer in the Hadly Lab working on geologic maps and paleo climate data, currently focusing on regions of the Caribbean and Central America. I graduated from UC Santa Cruz in 2009 with my bachelors degree in Earth Science and Physical Anthropology. It is wonderful to continually learn from those around me and challenge perspectives. The opportunity to study systems with an interdisciplinary approach, exploring the biotic and abiotic relationships is a key motivator in my research. I very much enjoyed working with everyone in the Hadly Lab last year and am looking forward to the new academic year.

Katharine Turkle

Administrative Associate

I went to college at the rival East Bay university, but I have been in the Department of Biology since 2007. Please contact me with urgent lab matters.

Department of Biology
Gilbert Building, Rm. 228
371 Serra Mall
Stanford, CA 94305-5020

650.723.6311 (Phone), 650.723.6132 (Fax)

Franco Errico

Undergraduate Researchers

I am a senior majoring in computer science. I assisted Danny Karp with his research in Costa Rica in 2011. Currently, I am working on an independent project investigating the dispersal patterns of the coffee berry borer beetle.

Maesen Churchill

I am a senior majoring in Biology and interested in the relationship between environmental and human health, or one health. My thesis research focuses on the bacteria Bartonella in Costa Rican bats, and my past projects have included emerging infectious diseases, biological pest control and parasitology.

Seth Judson

I am a senior majoring in Geological and Environmental Sciences with a minor in German Studies. I am interested in studying the fossil record of mass extinctions, and my current research project focuses on late Pleistocene tiger salamander remains from Snowmass, CO.

ZiXiang Zhang

I am a junior majoring in Biology (Eco/Evo) with a minor in Arab Studies. I am extremely interested in anole phylogenetics and will study anoles with Melissa, as well as hopefully partaking in any other reptile and amphibian projects.

Simon Scarpetta

I am a junior majoring in Biology with a minor in Computer Science. I am working with Alexis to investigate insular extinction patterns by analyzing Nesophontes morphology. In order to promote the solenodon's conservation, I am working on a children's book and a piece for radio.

Laura Cussen
Laura Cussen

I am a junior, majoring in Electrical Engineering potentially with a minor in Biology. In the future, I hope to apply engineering techniques to researching animals, as well as to draw inspiration from the natural world for engineering applications.

Mindy Perkins

I am a junior majoring in Human Biology with a concentration in evolutionary biology and biological anthropology and a possible minor in mathematics. I am interested in paleo-anthropology and studying the fossil record to learn about human development and evolution.

Delaney Sztraicher

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Hadly Lab, Department of Biology, Stanford University, Stanford, CA 94305-5020
ph. 650.725.2655 | fax. 650.723.6132 | e-mail: hadly@stanford.edu | contact the webmaster