Davis Lab

Evolution of Deep-Sea Fishes

Research in the lab  focuses on the evolution of fishes that inhabit the deep sea, as the extreme habitats of this environment have produced fascinating evolutionary events among the 4000 - 6000 species of marine fishes that have invaded this realm (e.g., telescopic eyes, bioluminescence, hermaphroditism). We use phylogenetic hypotheses as frameworks to investigate a breadth of evolutionary questions related to organismal diversity and diversification. Our work focuses on exploring a number of evolutionary topics related to fishes that inhabit the deep sea, including; estimating divergence times, temporal changes in diversification rates, character evolution, correlations between speciation rates and evolutionary adaptations, ecological habitat shifts, and biogeography.

New Paper: Biological Implications for Biofluorescence in Sharks

Original Source: Gruber, D.F., Loew, E.R., Deheyn, D.D., Akkaynak, D., Gaffney, J.P., Smith, W.L., Davis, M.P., Stern, J.H., Pieribone, V.A., and Sparks, J.S. (2016). Biofluorescence in Catsharks (Scyliorhinidae): Fundamental Description and Relevance for Elasmobranch Visual Ecology. Scientific Reports. 6, 24751; doi: 10.1038/srep24751

Media Coverage
Howard, B.C. National Geographic. "Through a Shark's Eyes: See How They Glow in the Deep."
Preston, E. The Atlantic. "Scientists Have Developed Shark Vision."
Ossola, A. Popular Science. "Sharks Glow, But Only For Each Other."
Snyder, K. EurekAlert!. "Patterns of Glowing Sharks Get Clearer with Depth."
Feltman, R. The Washington Post. "Scientists Built a Special Camera to Study Glow-In-The-Dark Sharks."


St. Cloud State University, 720 4th Ave South, Wick Science Building, St. Cloud, MN 56301. © MP Davis 2016