[MARMAM] Post-doc Opportunity - Systematics and Evolutionary Relationships of Marine Mammals

Daniel Odell d2tm2 at q.com
Fri May 4 08:06:18 PDT 2012

NOAA’s National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) has statutory 
obligations to protect marine mammals within its Extended Economic Zone 
and beyond. Such protection requires thorough understanding of the 
natural history of the various groups, such as cetaceans, pinnipeds, and 
sirenians, including all levels of evolutionary relationships. The 
marine-mammal collection of over 11,000 specimens at the Smithsonian 
Institution’s National Museum of Natural History (NMNH) is a result of 
long-term collaboration between NMNH and NMFS and is one of the best in 
the world. The diversity of this collection allows broadly-based 
research on comparative morphology of systematic characters. The large 
number of specimens of many species permits analyses of variability 
among individuals, sexes, life-history stages. and geographic areas. 
Furthermore, the museum’s Laboratory for Analytical Biology, located at 
the Museum Support Center, provides the capability for state-of-the-art 
analyses for molecular systematics. We expect that the Associate will 
work with the National Collection at NMNH using combined morphological 
and molecular methods to investigate questions of importance to NMFS. 
Possible general directions for the research include (1) examination of 
taxonomic problems of complex groups of species and their populations, 
(2) phylogenetic and biogeographic investigations using molecular 
techniques in combination with morphological characters from specimens 
in museum collections, and (3) comparative studies examining evolution 
of life-history characteristics or biogeography.


Daniel K. Odell, Ph.D.
Biological Consulting
Divide, CO  80814

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