Running with an Innovation: The Evolution and Biomechanics of Gecko Locomotion
One key aspect of my research is focused on the origin, use, and loss of the adhesive system of geckos, a key innovation that has promoted diversification. The adhesive system has originated independently over a dozen times, and has been secondarily lost independently several times. Thus, this system provides a unique opportunity to examine convergent evolution in the formation of a complex innovation. We work in Namibia, French Guiana, and Trinidad & Tobago, focusing on several key groups that exhibit unique adhesive capabilities and ecology.