Trabaja en Manchester investigando la evolución del canto de las aves ~

3 de mayo de 2020

Trabaja en Manchester investigando la evolución del canto de las aves

Modelling Birdsong Evolution at the University of Manchester

In many bird species, young males learn their songs from their
fathers. But, learning occurs with error, so songs can change over
generations. This culturally transmitted behaviour fascinates the public
and has important implications for conservation. Birds use songs to
choose mates. If songs diverge among partly isolated populations, this
may prevent those populations from exchanging genes and threaten species
viability. Data-driven mechanistic models of the evolution of birdsong
could help us understand birdsong evolution, but few such models exist.

Birdsong evolution is in some ways analogous to genome evolution. Notes
are like nucleotides, and mutations(i.e., errors in copying) can change
one note to another. Notes or song segments can be inserted, deleted,
or duplicated. Tools from molecular phylogenetics may thus provide a
foundation for modelling such changes.However, there are important
differences between genomes and birdsongs. For example, individuals
have a single genome, but a bird may sing many different songs. Genomes
are comprised of only four different nucleotides, but birdsongs may
have more than four different notes, and in principle entirely new
notes can arise. Furthermore, because changes between related birdsongs
are more common than genetic changes,aligning birdsongs for study is
difficult, and inferences may need to be drawn from multiple possible
alignments.Novel approaches are needed to overcome these challenges.

The student on this PhD will develop new models to predict birdsong
evolution. These models will help explain how animal cultures evolve, and
will have applications for in situ and ex situ conservation. Students with
strong backgrounds in maths, physics, computer science, or mathematical and
computational approaches in their own fields are particularly encouraged
to apply.

The project will be advised by Tucker Gilman (Earth and Environmental
Science), Mark Muldoon (Mathematics),and Pat Strycharczuk (Linguistics)
at the University of Manchester, and Masayo Soma (Biology) at the
University of Hokkaido.

Applicants must be eligible to live and work in the UK/EU. Please with questions, or for information
on how to apply.

But, if there is a particular format I should use for this, I am happy
to edit accordingly!


R. Tucker Gilman

Department of Earth and Environmental Science
University of Manchester
Office:C.1249a Michael Smith Building
Tel: +44 (0)161 275 1544
Twitter: @GilmanTucker

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