Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Visiting Jessica Ware at Rutgers University in New Jersey

I am currently visiting Assist. Prof. Jessica Ware, an increasing star on the field of odonate molecular systematics. Jessica visited our lab about a year ago, and I am here to discuss future collaborative efforts. Jessica is currently running a lot of interesting projects on odonate groups like Libelluloidea and Synlestidae, and is dating evolutionary radiations, examining lineage-through-time plots and trying to understand macroevolutionary patterns and dymamics of diversification in this fascinating insect group.

We are both having a great time, and Jessica says hello to everyone in the lab in Lund. Tomorrow we are continuing our scientific discussions about collaborations, and on Thursday we are going to another campus to meet some other colleagues, among them (hopefully!) legendary evolutionary biologist Robert Trivers. Last year, PhD-student  of ours Anna Runemark also visited Rutgers, and worked in the lab of molecular population geneticist Jody Hey, learning how to analyze directional gene flow and estimation of ancestral population sizes using Bayesian analytical techniques.On Friday, we will go to New York ("The Big Apple") and visit the American Museum of Natural History, were we hopefully can take a look at some of the fossil specimens of extinct giant dragonflies of the genus Meganeura.

Newark is a strange city: modern and with high buildings, but also some scaringly ruins in the city centre that reminds me of scenes from the HBO-show "Sopranos". Apparently many movies are recorded in Newark, when director wants slum scenes! In the 60-ties, the city was apparently very violent and a stronghold for the legendary Black Panther Party, the legendary liberation movement for African-americans.


  1. Nice post Erik! The time in Jessica's lab sounds great (nice tree, too!). Gosh, do I love the Sopranos. I became addicted to the show while living in Lund. No, I can't explain this fact. Maybe Lund felt too safe. =-)