Science Cafe: Animal Hybrids
Ligers and tigons — they sound like made-up creatures from Greek mythology, but they're not! They are the real result when lions and tigers mate and create hybrid animals. Most people assume that hybridization is a rare event. Actually, scientists are becoming increasingly aware that hybridization happens far more often than previously thought. The consequences of hybridization are complex and include everything from extinction to the creation of a new species. Learn what recent studies have shown about several examples of hybridization of animals ranging from frogs and salamanders to lions and tigers. What are the implications of hybridization for conservation planning?
About our speaker
Amanda Chunco is an Assistant Professor in the Environmental Studies Department at Elon University. She has a B.S. degree in Zoology from the University of Florida, a Ph.D. in Ecology and Evolution from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, and completed a Postdoctoral Fellowship in the Geography Department at UNC. Her research interests specifically focus on using GIS tools to address conservation issues in amphibians. She also has a strong interest in teaching and outreach efforts focusing on conservation and climate change. http://amandajchunco.wordpress.com/