Hybrid zones are regions where individuals with divergent genomes interact, resulting in offspring of mixed ancestry. These natural laboratories can be used to investigate the mechanisms that underlie reproductive isolation and the genetic bases of traits relevant to speciation. They can also be used to investigate species interactions and the influence of environmental change on these interactions and on species distributions. For specific examples of our work see 'Hybrid Zones' tab.
Understanding how populations diverge is key to understanding the generation of biodiversity. We can now use whole genome data to better illuminate patterns of divergence in recently diverged species-flocks, look for genotype-phenotype associations in traits relevant to differentiaion, and determine the frequency with which species exchange genes during the speciation process. For specific examples of our work see 'Population differentiation and Speciation' tab.
Image courtesy of Alberto López