This week’s EEB is a split session featuring two MSc candidates of the Queen’s University Department of Biology:

Part One – Rachael Hornsby, Tufts Lab

Impacts of competitive fishing tournaments on Black Bass in the bay of Quinte and Eastern Lake Ontario 

Black Bass are an economically important species for catch and release tournaments in North America. The Bay of Quinte and Eastern Basin of Lake Ontario are subject to heavy angling pressure, with multi-day tournaments occurring most weekends of the summer season. Previous work on small inland lakes has shown that Black Bass exhibit homing and spawning site fidelity, however their movement in the Great Lakes is relatively unknown. My MSc thesis focuses on the effect of long distance (up to 100km) tournament displacement on local Largemouth Bass populations and the post release movement of both Largemouth and Smallmouth Bass. AKA Do they go home and after how long? With the participation of several local tournament organizations my study has employed  two main methods: the use of external floy tags to estimate population of Largemouth Bass in the Bay of Quinte and provide general movement data; and the use of acoustic telemetry to assess movement of both species post tournament release. I will present some preliminary results and observed trends from the first few months of my data collection.  

Part Two – Stephanie Kim, Martin Lab

Species interactions and the evolution of bill morphologies in birds, worldwide 

When closely related species occur in sympatry, they face the significant challenge of adapting to the same local conditions in their shared environment, which favours the convergent evolution of traits. Simultaneously, these species must minimize the costs of competition for shared resources that typically favours the divergent evolution of traits. How do most species respond to these conflicting selection pressures? My MSc thesis is testing these ideas, focused on the bill morphologies of birds from around the world. I travelled to museums across North America and took pictures of bird skulls to compare differences between sympatric and allopatric species. While previous work on Darwin’s finches has found evidence for divergent selection and evolution of bill morphologies in sympatry, we provide the first comparative test across ecologically and taxonomically diverse species of birds. 

HOST: Tufts / Martin

The EEB Seminars run weekly, on Thursdays, in the EEB Lounge of the BioSciences Complex, Room 4338, from 12:30-1:30pm. Light refreshments are served starting at 12:15.

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