CIE Seminar Series – 2019: The genomic basis of explosive speciation

SPEAKER: Dr Matthew McGee, Head, Behavioural Studies Research Group, ARC DECRA Fellow, School of Biological Sciences, Monash University

DATE: Friday, 12th July 2019

TIME: 1:30pm

LOCATION: Geelong Campus at Waurn Ponds – Room ka4.207 (Green room).

Seminar will also be video linked to the following campuses: Melbourne Campus at Burwood –Burwood Corporate Centre and Warrnambool Campus, Room J2.19 (Fishbowl).


Rates of speciation vary tremendously among evolutionary lineages and our understanding of the factors facilitating the very rapid speciation seen within species flocks remains incomplete.

Here, we examine the extrinsic and intrinsic factors promoting speciation within the cichlid fishes, a tropical freshwater group known for their exceptional diversity.

We analyze cichlids on a macroevolutionary scale using a large complete phylogeny of all described species, as well as a microevolutionary scale using one hundred whole genomes of the Lake Victoria species flock, which has the fastest sustained speciation rate in vertebrates.


My lab uses whole genomic sequencing, phylogenetic comparative methods, and functional experiments to study the factors governing speciation, adaptation, and extinction, with an emphasis on fishes.

I received my PhD at the University of California Davis, then did my postdoc with Ole Seehausen at University of Bern.

Appointments with speaker may be made via Larry Croft (

For more info:

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