My research interests include higher-level phylogenetics of the diverse lineages of the beetle superfamily Cucujoidea. The goals of this research are to reconstruct a robust phylogeny for the major cucujoid lineages based on multiple independent data sets to:
1) identify major cucujoid lineages
2) specifically test the monophyly of the Cerylonid Series group and
----investigate its position relative to the other cucujoid taxa
3) investigate the internal relationships of the Cerylonid Series group
4) explore the evolution of host preference in light of our results.
We are currently working on compiling an extensive morphological and molecular (18S, 28S, 12S, and 16S rDNA, COII, and H3) data set for a broad taxonomic sampling of the major cucujoid lineages and outgroup taxa. The morphological component of this research is in collaboration with PEET collaborator Adam Slipinski (CSIRO), while the molecular component is in collaboration with PEET collaborators Michael Whiting (BYU) and Kelly Miller (BYU).