Starting in January 2018, The Genetics Cat (or The G-CAT for short) is a sporadic blog dedicated to sharing information and ideas relating to evolutionary and conservation genetics, academic research and the environment. Occasionally, I include posts on other adjacent topics or various ad hoc inspirations. The G-CAT is written for a broad but interested audience, and thus aims to be accessible to as many people as possible.
My subfields of research are in phylogenetics, phylogeography and biogeography – that is, how changes in the environment over millions of years have shaped the evolution of species (using genetics). For both my Honours and my PhD, these questions were aimed at a group of small endangered freshwater fishes endemic to Australia – the pygmy perches. Through my PhD – completed in 2020 – I demonstrated how major changes in the environment of southeast Australia in the past shaped the evolution of pygmy perches, and the ramifications of this for our ongoing conservation efforts. These patterns were contrasting in the southwest, where long-term climatic stability allowed species to accumulate in the formation of a biodiversity hotspot.