The Botero Lab studies how organisms adapt to (or cope with) repeated environmental changes. A surprising amount of current evolutionary theory is based on the assumption that the world is static and that species gradually evolve until their traits are uniquely tuned to the conditions they experience. Yet, long-term studies on a wide range of organisms have demonstrated that natural selection tends to fluctuate over time, even to the point in which a single trait may be highly beneficial in some years and detrimental in others. Through theoretical models, comparative analyses, and experimental evolution, my team and I are helping shed some light on the various ways in which evolutionary responses to those fluctuations have made a difference. This line of inquiry has led us to make exciting discoveries related to species’ vulnerabilities to climate change, the evolution of the avian brain, the evolution of sociality, and sexual selection. My lab is also currently pursuing research on the topics of human cultural evolution, experimental evolution in yeast, and inference of process from pattern in evolutionary studies. 

Please follow these links to learn more about us and our work.

Latest news...

[Oct 2017] Congrats to postdoc Bruno Vilela!!! His PhD thesis recently received the BEST THESIS IN BIODIVERSITY award from the Brazilian government and is now in the running for an award as the best thesis across all scientific disciplines. Fingers crossed!

[Sep 2017] Our first paper on the cognitive buffer hypotheses and the evolution of relative brain size in birds was recently published in Nature Ecology and Evolution. Please have a look [link here].

[June 2017] Can ignoring the sequence of events in the evolution of complex traits lead to biased or even wrong conclusions about an evolutionary process? Our new paper on the evolution of family living and cooperative breeding in birds in PLoS Biology sugest that it may. Check out also Walter Koenig's interesting take on the significance of these findings.

[Feb 2017] Check out our new paper on the evolution of bird sociality in Nature Ecology and Evolution. Big thanks to Charlie Cornwallis for a really fun and insightful collaborative experience!

For other news and posts from our lab visit our blog...