Apply for a fully funded 4yr PhD fellowship on the evolution of sexual conflict in fruit flies! See “Join us” section.
Zahida just got a 4 yr PhD fellowship from the Univ. Valencia! She will be working on sex-specific ageing in Drozzies. Congrats!
Two positions are opening in our lab for 2017. Interested? Check out our Join us section for more details.
A lab assistant position to work on Sexual conflict, kin selection and ageing in Drozzies will open up in our lab soon (September). Interested? Drop me an email (email@example.com).
Javi won a prestigious 4 yr FPU (Spanish National Call) PhD fellowship to work on lizard communication, well done!
Arnaud Badiane and Javier Abalos receive travel grants to present talks at the ASAB Easter Conference 2016 in Aberystwyth University, well done!
We just published a short correspondence in Nature about the scientific consequences of academic language ruling in Spain.
Chris Watson (PhD candidate), Zahida Sultanova (PhD candidate), and Ana Hidalgo (lab manager/technician) join our lab, welcome!
As it turns out, aphids of the species Paracletus cimiciformis come in asexually reproducing twin clonal forms during their radiculous (i.e. root-dwelling) phase. Aphids in general, and this species in particular, have highly complex life cycles (read Ed Young’s hilarious piece in National Geographic about this), and it is in this particular phase when aphids interact with their tending ant, Tetramorium semilaeve. The first of this twin morphs (a greenish morph) chimes well with ants, with whom they trade honeydew for their protection and cleaning services. The second twin morph, though, is as whitish as is devilish. Instead of engaging in this archetypical ant-aphid mutualistic relationship, it mimics ant larvas’ scent to deceive ants into carrying back into their nest, as if they were a stranded larvae. There, they will find refuge from the harshness of winter and feast on ant larva with their stylet, much like a vampire in disguise! This is not only the first known case of aggressive mimicry in aphids, but a fascinating example of plastic aggressive mimicry in that the white and green morphs are clonal copies, and are able to give rise to each other via parthenogenesis; a true case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde indeed! Adrian Salazar, the leading author of this paper, has spent almost three years of his PhD studying the relationship between these aphids and their ant hosts in detail, and all that hard work is finally beginning to pay off! Well done Adrian! Stay tuned for the next chapters of this amazing story. In the meanwhile, you can also read about it in New Scientist.