Some ongoing work in our group is investigating the genetic, phenotypic, and ecological consequences of life history transitions in New Zealand freshwater fish. PhD student Motia Ara is studying genetic and morphological variation in coastal and landlocked common smelt (Retropinna retropinna), with a focus on populations in shallow lakes on Rēkohu/Chatham Island. PhD student Mitra Mohammadi Darestani is working on the genetic and life history consequences of landlocking in kōaro (Galaxias brevipinnis), following up on work done by former PhD student Jason Augspurger (primary supervisor Gerry Closs), and on gene expression plasticity in multiple landlocking fish species.
We have also started to investigate how individual dispersal history affects individual traits in facultatively diadromous fish species. Our first study, led by visiting MSc student Grégoire Saboret, showed that the interaction between larval and adult salinity environments has some effects on trophic position and parasite load in common bully (Gobiomorphus cotidianus).