Ben Winger | Principal Investigator
View Ben Winger's Curriculum Vitae
Ben is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology and Curator of Birds in the Museum of Zoology at the University of Michigan. He is an evolutionary biologist and ornithologist working at the interface of speciation, biogeography, and behavioral ecology, with broad and diverse interests in avian evolution, ecology and behavior. Ben earned his PhD in 2015 from the University of Chicago and his BA in 2007 from Cornell University.
Contact: wingerb [at] umich.edu
Dr. Marketa Zimova| Postdoctoral Fellow, Institute for Global Change Biology
Marketa is an evolutionary ecologist interested in wildlife responses to global environmental change. She is a postdoctoral fellow in UM's Institute for Global Change Biology, where she will be working with Ben Winger and Brian Weeks on the ecological consequences of climate change-induced shifts in migratory birds. She also continues to investigate the adaptive capacity to phenological mismatch of seasonal camouflage in snowshoe hares, Arctic foxes and other winter white species. She received her MS in 2013 and PhD in 2019 from the University of Montana.
Susanna Campbell | PhD Student (2017- )
Susanna is co-advised by Ben Winger and Dr. Liliana Cortes-Ortiz. She is interested in how genomes introgress during hybridization and is studying hybridization genetics in an avian system. Susanna completed her Masters degree in EEB at the University of Michigan in 2017 and attended University of Maryland, Baltimore County for her undergraduate degree.
Eric Gulson-Castillo | PhD Student (2018-)
Prior to beginning graduate school, Eric spent a year in Indonesia on a Fulbright scholarship, researching Sulawesi’s unique starlings and hornbills. He graduated from Cornell University in 2015 and has since done field work in far-flung places and worked as a teaching assistant. He has done research on thermoregulation, morphology, and natural history, with a focus on Bornean birds. He is currently very interested in movement ecology (including nomadism) and frugivory in tropical birds.
Teresa Pegan | PhD Student (2017- )
Teresa graduated from Cornell University in 2015. Her past research experiences have included working with solar-powered radio tags on Tree Swallows, observing the natural history of Bornean birds, and studying a new population of Cliff Swallow breeding in South America. She is interested in when and why birds disperse, what influences dispersal limitation, and how these factors affect evolution. She particularly enjoys learning about tropical forest birds, especially those in Southeast Asia.
Kristen Wacker | PhD Student (2019- )
Kristen graduated from the University of Chicago in 2017. Prior to joining the Winger Lab, she worked at the The Field Museum in Chicago for two years, where she used molecular approaches to study the phylogenomics, population genetics, and pathogens of endemic birds from Madagascar. She is interested in genomics and avian microevolution, particularly how birds are responding to the intensive selection pressures of the Anthropocene.
Dr. Brett Benz | Ornithology Collection Manager and Assistant Research Scientist
Brett began as the Collection Manager of the UMMZ bird collections in 2019. He is a leading expert on the taxonomy and distribution of the birds of New Guinea, and conducts active collections-based research throughout New Guinea. He received his PhD and B.S. from Kansas University. Prior to joining the UMMZ, Brett was a research scientist at the American Museum of Natural History.
Staff website: https://lsa.umich.edu/eeb/people/collections-staff/brett-benz.html
Dr. Shane DuBay | Michigan Fellow
Shane is a Postdoctoral Scholar in the Michigan Society of Fellows and Assistant Professor in EEB. He studies how historical and current ecological processes affect how organisms respond to environmental pressures, with a focus on montane systems. Shane received his PhD from the University of Chicago in 2018.
Dr. Jacob Berv| Postdoctoral Fellow, Life Sciences Insitute
Jake is a UM Life Sciences Fellow, working with several PIs in EEB (Stephen Smith, Dan Rabosky and Ben Winger) and the Museum of Paleontology (Matt Friedman). Jake completed his PhD in ecology and evolutionary biology at Cornell University in 2019, where he studied the phylogeography of neotropical birds, as well as higher level patterns of bird macroevolution. At Michigan, Jake hopes to continue investigating these research foci through a combination of genomic and paleontological approaches.
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