Speaker - Peter Grant

 Peter  Grant  Thumbnail


I am interested in ecology, evolution and behavior. I seek an understanding of the origin of new species, their ecological interactions, their persistence in different communities and their ultimate extinction. In this broad area I chose Darwin's Finches on the Galápagos Islands for intensive investigation more than 40 years ago because some unique features, including their tameness and simplicity of their undisturbed habitats, make them unusually suitable for field research into questions of evolution. Although I retired in 2008, and no longer supervise graduate students, I continue research on the finches, and carry it out in several collaborations, with my wife Rosemary Grant, molecular geneticist Leif Andersson, and other scientists. Our current focus is on the evolutionary importance of hybridization. We are attempting to discover how an exchange of genes between species affects fitness-related traits, and how hybridization may have contributed to the origin and proliferation of species.

1 Program