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December 2017

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Jim and Carol Patton in Death Valley

Nature (2017) 150:168-169
Grinnell Resurvey
Featured in Nature
Jim and Carol Patton and their work on the Grinnell Resurvey Project in Death Valley were featured in an article in Nature by Amy Maxmen.

A dusky flycatcher tends its nest near Battle Creek in Tehama County on June 17, 1925
(Photo by Joseph Dixon, Museum of Vertebrate Zoology)

PNAS (2107) 114(49): 12976-12981
DOI: 10.1073/pnas.1705897114
Birds Nesting Earlier
Recent publication by MVZ Faculty
MVZ faculty Steve Bessinger and colleagues published an article in PNAS on "Phenological shifts conserve thermal niches in North American birds and reshape expectations for climate-driven range shifts." This publication has been highlighted in Berkeley News and Audubon.

Chalcorana raniceps
(Photo by Yu Zeng former MVZ Grad, Ph.D. 2013)

PNAS (2017) 114(29): E5864-E5870
DOI: 10.1073/pnas.1704632114
Dinosaurs' Loss was Frogs' Gain
Recent publication by MVZ Faculty
David Wake (MVZ faculty and curator) and colleagues published an article in PNAS on "Phylogenomics reveals rapid, simultaneous diversification of three major clades of Gondwanan frogs at the Cretaceous-Paleogene boundary"

Barred Owl from California Academy of Sciences video
Spotted vs. Barred Owls
Video with MVZ Graduate Student
MVZ graduate student Zach Hanna featured in a video published by the California Academy of Sciences with Jack Dumbacher (CAS Curator of Mammals and Birds) about their work with Spotted and Barred Owls in the West.

Karina with a chameleon near one of her field sites in central-eastern Madagascar
(Photo by Richard Klonoski)
From the Field
Recent publication by MVZ Grad
MVZ graduate student Karina Klonoski recently published an article in the Berkeley Science Review, a graduate student-run magazine that aims to highlight the groundbreaking research occurring at UC Berkeley in a wide variety of scientific disciplines.

Group Photo by George Roderick
Sat. September 9, 2017

Natural History of the Vertebrates
Over the course of three days and multiple events, more than 300 people attended! Thank you to everyone who attended and helped make this event a success!

Event Summary

Jesyka Melendez pictured here (left) with group members
(Photo by Anne Brice)
Aid for Puerto Rico
MVZ Grad Student Assists in Efforts
MVZ Grad Student Jesyka Melendez was featured in Berkeley News highlighting the efforts of Boricuas in Berkeley aiding Puerto Rico after Hurricane Maria.

MVZ Kudos

MVZ Graduate Fellowships

MVZ Fellowship recipients for the 2017-2018 academic year:
  • Luke Bloch (Bowie Lab) - Joseph Mailliard Fellowship
  • Dana Lin (Bowie & Lacey Labs) - Jerry O. Wolff Fellowship
  • Katya Mack (Nachman Lab) - Jerry O. Wolff Fellowship

NSF Grants

Jim McGuire (MVZ faculty and curator) and Jeff Frederick (MVZ grad student)  "Collaborative Research: Phylogenetic Systematics and the Evolution of Reproductive Innovation in an Adaptive Radiation of Limnonectes Fanged Frogs"

David Blackburn (Univ. Florida), Carol Spencer, and Michelle Koo 
(MVZ staff curators and researchers) "Digitization TCN: oVert: Open Exploration of Vertebrate Diversity in 3D"

Dana Lin (MVZ grad student) received a DDIG: "The Dynamics of Socio-Chemo Cues Across a Contact Zone in the California Vole (Microtus californicus)"

Ashley Smiley (affiliated grad student) received a GFRP.

Chris Conroy (MVZ staff curator and researcher) "Biogeography and Systematics of Vole, Microtus californicus, in Baja California, Mexico"

Jim McGuire (MVZ faculty and curator) "Genomics of Speciation in Terrestrial Vertebrates of the Islas Revillagigedo"

photo courtesy of
Marshall and Jenny White

Are you an MVZ Alumnus?

Keep us updated HERE

Thank You
Jennifer Meux White and Marshall White
For Your Generous Gift to the MVZ!
The faculty, staff, and students of the Museum of Vertebrate Zoology are grateful to Jennifer and Marshall White, who recently pledged a gift of $2 million to the MVZ. This addition to the Grinnell Fund will help to grow our endowment and enable us to sustain our research and education mission far into the future.

In addition, we thank them for their support of the MVZ through the Shasta Wildlife Conservation Foundation established in 1998 by Jennifer and Marshall White along with Robert Aramayo. Since its inception, the foundation has provided annual grants to the Museum of Vertebrate Zoology, other campus units, as well as non-campus groups that support wildlife conservation efforts and train students to enter relevant careers.

MVZ Alum Jennifer Meux White received her B.A. (1967) and Ph.D (1973) in Vertebrate Zoology at UC Berkeley. As a graduate student she was mentored by MVZ Professor and Curator, Oliver P. Pearson. Jennifer was later employed at UC Berkeley first as the Director of Biology and then as the Director of Exhibits at the Lawrence Hall of Science for 23 years and finally as Director of Education at the UC Botanical Garden for 10 years, where she is now emeritus.

Marshall White came to the MVZ in 1966 to join Starker Leopold and others on the faculty of the Wildlife-Fisheries unit. After Wildlife-Fisheries moved to the Forestry Department in 1969, Marshall maintained a formal association with the MVZ for many years as Associate Research Conservationist.

Thank you Jennifer and Marshall for your generous gift and those provided by the Shasta Wildlife Conservation Foundation!! We sincerely appreciate your enduring support of the MVZ!
Banner photo courtesy of...

Christian Irian. This photo was taken on the field trip to Point Reyes as part of Natural History of the Vertebrates Reunion on Sunday, September 10, 2017.


Wednesdays, 12pm - 1pm
Grinnell-Miller Library, MVZ 

Spring 2018 Schedule

Jan. 17, 2018
Jeffrey KellyOklahoma Biological Survey, University of Oklahoma

Feb. 14, 2018

Mike ShapiroDept. of Biology, University of Utah
March 7, 2018
Bret Payseur, Dept. of Genetics and Medical Genetics, University of Wisconsin - Madison

March 14, 2018
MVZ Student Invited Speaker
Anne Yoder, Dept. of Biology, Duke University

March 21, 2018
Cara Brook, Dept. of Integrative Biology and Dept. of Plant & Microbial Biology, UC Berkeley

March 28, 2018
No Seminar - Spring Break

April 4, 2018
Matthew Holding, Department of Biological Sciences, Clemson University

Ravinder Sehgal, Dept. of Biology, San Francisco State University

April 18, 2018
Finishing Talk: Taichi A. Suzuki, Museum of Vertebrate Zoology and Dept. of Integrative Biology, UC Berkeley

April 25, 2018
Finishing Talk: Jesyka MelendezMuseum of Vertebrate Zoology and Dept. of Integrative Biology, UC Berkeley

May 2, 2018
No Seminar - MVZ Retreat

May 9, 2018
Finishing Talk: Dana Lin, Museum of Vertebrate Zoology and Dept. of Integrative Biology, UC Berkeley

Every other Tuesday 9 - 9:30am
Hosted by MVZ affiliated postdoc, Tesla Monson, and highlights graduate student research at UC Berkeley.  

MVZ graduate students Ashley Smiley (Dudley lab) was recently featured on The Graduates Radio discussing "Hummingbirds in Flight" (December 5, 2017)


MVZ Merchandise

Hats - $25

Ensatina embroidered on stone (lighter) or khaki (darker) canvas hat.

T-shirts - $15
Designs in all sizes: Owl, Animal Banner, and Ensatina!

Mugs - $15

Animals reveal skeletons when mug is hot!

Posters - $1 to $3     
"Discovering Yosemite", "Understanding California", and "California Vernal Pools". 

Available at the MVZ - stop by and get yours today!

All proceeds support the museum, MVZ Archives, and AmphibiaWeb.



Show your support for amphibians by picking up some AmphibiaWeb mugs, shopping bags, or water bottles from our Zazzle site!

Museum of Vertebrate Zoology
Administrative Hours 

Monday - Friday
8am-noon and 1-5pm
Closed Saturdays and Sundays

Winter Closure:
Dec 16 - Jan 7



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