North American Atyid Shrimps

The family Atyidae is large and cosmopolitan in distribution, including both surface (epigean) and cave dwelling (stygobytic) forms.  The majority of atyid species are epigean and are tropical and sub-tropical in distribution.  North America is home to four recognized species of Atyidae:Syncaris pacificaS. pasadenae, Palaemonias alabamae, and P. ganteri. Historically, only two named species, the Kentucky Cave Shrimp (Palaemonias ganteri) and the Alabama cave shrimp (P. alabamae) were known from the southeastern United States.  Read more about North American Atyid Shrimps

Iowa Pleistocene Snail

The Iowa Pleistocene Snail (Discus macclintocki) is a small terrestrial snail (5–8 mm in diameter) that is included on the US list of endangered species. Discus macclintocki is endangered mainly due to its dependence on rare algific (cold-air) talus slopes adjacent to stream-beds in northeastern Iowa and northwestern Illinois. Read more about Iowa Pleistocene Snail

Conservation Genetics of Freshwater Mussels

Freshwater mussels are recognized as one of the most endangered group of organisms in the world. Scaleshell musselI am currently working on improving our understanding of phylogeography, population structure and genetic variation in freshwater mussels using a variety of molecular tools. I am also interested in understanding the role of processes such as gene flow and natural selection in maintaining genetic variation.  Read more about Conservation Genetics of Freshwater Mussels


With the help of several colleagues I have been working towards a phylogenetic analysis of the freshwater mussel family Margaritiferidae. I have also conducted a population-level study of the federally threatened Louisiana Pearlshell (Margaritifera hembeli). Read more about Margaritiferidae