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Adaptive divergence among populations of kestrels on the cape verde islands


Research objectives and content
Adaptive Divergence among Populations of Kestrels on the Cape Verde Islands Variations in morphology and behaviour among sexes and island populations will be analysed in order to investigate their variability in correlation with habitat differences and role partitioning. Evolutionary forces on the archipelago will undergo precise examination in respect to their transferability to other islands and geographically seperated populations in fragmented environments on the mainland. To verify differences of island populations and to analyse phylogenetically related populations the study will also include the nearest West African and the European taxa of the Tinnunculus group. Three existing hypotheses on sexual dimorphism in size of raptors will be verified. Against the hypotheses a nevv- one on sexual dimorphism independent of body size in respect to highly differentiated niche l utilization will be challenging. Molecular genetic analysis on nuclear and mitochondrial DNA will give the necessarybackground for the interpretation of variation in morphology and ecological demands among populations. It may also break through the barrier of knowledge about age of those populations, evolutionary adaptations and gene flow between islands and from the mainland to the archipelago. Nuclear and mitochondrial markers will be compared in l their validity to detect variation among island populations. It will offer the relevant marker for further population l studies on falcons. Training content (objective, benefit and expected impact)
Within the team of Prof. Dr. Winkler, head of the
Konrad-Lorenz-Institute, I will increase my skills in behavioural, ecomorphological and molecular research including data gathering on live birds, multivariate data analysis and genetic molecular techniques like PCR and sequencing. The access to the great databases at the institute e will give me I a deep insight in results of current research and the background for own actual and applied studies.
Links with industry / industrial relevance (22)


Österreichische Akademie der Wissenschaften
1 A,savoyenstraße
1160 Wien