Assistant Professor of Biology
B.A. Grinnell College
Ph.D. Indiana University - Bloomington
Phone - 540-568-6008
Office - Bioscience 1028C
Fax - 540-568-3333 

Office Hours             Lab Web Page

Courses:   Evolutionary Analysis (BIO 404), Insect Ecology (BIO 427).


Research Interests: Evolution and ecology; the evolution of phenotypic variation.

What selection pressures lead to variation between sexes and between species, and what maintains that variation? To study this, my lab investigates selection pressure through the social environment (mate choice and species recognition) and the ecological environment (viability). Our current research focuses on the evolution of color and shape variation of species in two damselfly genera, Megalagrion (an endemic Hawaiian radiation) and Calopteryx (of the mainland US and Canada). These systems contain extensive phenotypic color variation geographically and between species and sexes, have interesting courtship behaviors, and are sensitive to habitat alteration. Ultimately, we aim help understand the roles of ecological and sexual selection in shaping variation, speciation, and evolutionary responses to climate change.

Cooper, I.A., J.M. Brown, and T. Getty. In review. Ecological selection drives sexual dimorphism and species variation in Hawaiian damselflies.

Conner, J.K., I.A. Cooper, R. La Rosa, S. Perez, and A. Royer. 2013. Patterns and causes of phenotypic correlations among morphological traits across plants and animals. In press at Philosphical Transactions B.

Cooper, I.A., Gilman, R.T., and J.W. Boughman. 2011. Sexual dimorphism and speciation on two ecological coins: patterns from nature and theoretical predictions. Evolution 65(9):2553-2571.

Cooper, I.A. 2010. Ecology of sexual dimorphism and clinal variation of coloration in a damselfly. The American Naturalist176(5):566-572.

Brown, J.M. and I. Cooper. 2006. Evolution of wing pigmentation patterns in a tephritid gallmaker: divergence and hybridization. Pp. 253-261 in Galling Arthropods and Their Associates – Ecology and Evolution, K. Ozaki, J. Yukawa, T. Ohgushi, and P.W. Price, eds. Springer-Verlag, Tokyo.

Cooper, I.A., Roeder, L., and J.M. Brown. 2003. Arthropod response to burning and mowing in a reconstructed prairie.Ecological Restoration 21(3):204-205.65(9):2553-2571.

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