There is a deep scientific mystery hidden behind our understanding of the origin of species, evolutionary relatedness among them, and the geographical distribution patterns we see today.
‘What is what‘ is not a naming problem but also always has a biogeography perspective attached to it, which fascinates us.
During my doctoral studies, I resolved a long debate on the phylogeny of Indian owlets, studied the effect of Quaternary climatic fluctuations and future climate change on the ranges of owlets, and attempted to translate the research towards aiding conservation of one of my study species, Forest Owlet Athene blewitti which is an Endangered owlet.
Western Ghats Odonata Phylogeny Project
Around 80 species of odonates (dragonflies & damselflies) occur exclusively in the Western Ghats of India. The evolutionary timelines and origins of these species are a mystery.
Our research focuses on building the first-ever phylogeny of the Western Ghats’ endemic odonates, assess threats to selected species, and generate knowledge on the biogeography of the ancient insects. It is a field + lab project and we are very excited about it!