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Introduction To The Cowie Lab

Most of the research in the lab is aimed at understanding the origins and determinants of biological diversity in the islands of the Pacific, and most current projects are focused on land and freshwater snails. The advantages of using snails are that 1) they are diverse in the Pacific but not unmanageably so; 2) they are relatively sedentary and thus easily collected and sampled accurately; 3) much of the inter- and intra-specific variation manifested by them is readily recorded by simple methods; 4) the shell remains intact for a considerable time in the field after the animal has died; and 5) there are immense and well-documented museum collections from throughout the Pacific basin going back over a century, including alcohol preserved specimens from which DNA can be extracted. Research in the lab investigates important questions in Pacific biodiversity and related issues from a number of different perspectives. Follow the links above to find out more.

Last update: Monday, April 26, 2010