Ph.D. Student


AjayI am primarily interested in better understanding how avian variation arises and evolves across time and space. Particularly in the context of Anthropocene extinctions, I feel compelled to delve into the processes governing adaptive genetic variation, and further understand how this variation persists and is shaped by natural selection within the larger ecological community. I completed my undergraduate education at the University of Florida, graduating with a B.S. in Zoology. While there, I conducted research in the Ornithology and Ichthyology Collections, and was able to join on a fish collecting trip in Thailand. This ignited a passion for field-based research and motivated me to pursue field technician jobs. In my tech jobs, I worked with marsh birds in Mississippi, and hellbenders in Virginia. I’m excited to continue working in the field and begin studying the genetic basis of spatial cognition in mountain chickadees!