March 27, 2014

Why Cooperate?
Costs and Benefits of Cooperative Courtship Displays in a System with Variable Cooperative Partnerships

Speaker: Megan Jones

Thursday, March 27, 2014
Social at 7:00 p.m.
Program at 7:30 p.m.
Historic Amtrak Station, 918 Railroad Avenue

Megan Jones

Megan Jones

Megan, a Ph.D. Candidate at Florida State University, is intereste in many aspects of behavioral and evolutionary ecology. Her dissertation research at FSU looks at the costs and benefits of cooperative courtship display to dominant individuals within tropical manakins. The work addresses a previously unexplored aspect of cooperative courtship display and contributes significantly to the more general understanding of the costs and benefits of cooperation. Understanding cooperation among manakins groups sheds light on how cooperation may have evolved in other animals, including humans, and her work involves field work in Costa Rica and Panama as well as genetic studies at FSU.

After completing a B.S. in Wildlife Biology at Humboldt State University, Megan pursued her interests in avian behavior ecology while working on field jobs around the world. Her interest in the natural world goes beyond research to a passion for teaching and sharing nature with others. To support her goals of teaching alongside research, Megan is dual-enrolled in a Master’s of Science-Teaching at FSU. She enjoys the opportunity to mentor undergraduate students and recent graduates during her field work. When teaching lab-based taxonomy courses, her goal is to serve as a guide while each student first learns to see differences and similarities, and then to identify species. Through this learning process she hopes to draw out a student’s curiosity in the natural world and scientific processes. For Megan, science and natural history are not only a career but also a passion.