Rebecca E. Koch
The University of Tulsa
Exploring evolution and behavior across winged systems
I take an integrative approach to answering longstanding questions about animal communication and sexual signaling. Explaining the mechanisms that underlie condition-dependent signals remains a key challenge in behavioral ecology. My research addresses key hypotheses for honest signaling in display behaviors, diving into genetics and even mitochondrial biology.
In my first postdoctoral fellowship, I used the model system of the fruit fly to explore how variation at the cellular level cascades upward to variation in behavior, particularly mating display behaviors. In my current position, I work with Dr. Matt Toomey to better understand the genetic and physiological underpinnings of carotenoid-based pigmentation in birds.