Welcome to the Funk Lab

We strive to understand the evolutionary and ecological mechanisms that generate and maintain biological diversity using population genomics, experimental manipulations, and field studies. Our goal is to not only test basic evolutionary and ecological theory, but also directly inform policy and management decisions that will ultimately determine the fate of biodiversity.



Congratulations to Sarah Hays for winning third place for her poster at the Front Range Student Ecology Symposium and Celebrate Undergraduate Research and Creativity Showcase!

Sarah Hays sharing her research results on nest construction in Santa Catalina Island Orange-crowned warblers.

Congratulations to Funkling Sarah Hays for getting third place for her poster at the Front Range Student Ecology Symposium and Celebrate Undergraduate Research and Creativity Showcase! Sarah’s research was funded by the Research Mentoring to Advance Inclusivity […]

Congratulations to Rebecca Cheek for passing her comprehensive exam!

Rebecca and her PhD committee (Lise Aubry, Cam Ghalambor, Chris Funk, and Scott Sillett (remotely) after her successful comprehensive exam.

Rebecca Cheek, PhD CANDIDATE!!

Cameron Ghalambor, Scott Sillett, Brandt Ryder, Paul Hohenlohe, and Chris receive NSF grant to test mechanisms of microgeographic adaptation

Island scrub-jay (Aphelocoma insularis). Photo credit: Katie Langin

NSF has funded our collaborative research project aimed at understanding the mechanisms causing fine-scale adaptation in the face of ongoing gene flow in island scrub-jays. Growing evidence suggests that adaptive evolution can occur over small spatial distances. How this fine-scale adaptation arises and is […]

Congratulations to Maybellene Gamboa for receiving the Vice President for Research Fellowship!

The VPR fellowship is awarded to graduate students that conduct novel, interdisciplinary research at CSU and that exhibit an ability to communicate their work to a broad audience. Hundreds of CSU graduate students present their research at the annual CSU Graduate Student Showcase, and 40 presenters are selected to compete for a VPR Fellowship […]

Congratulations to Maybellene Gamboa for passing her comprehensive exam!

Maybellene Gamboa at the “Santa Cruz Island Institute for Physiological Research” (i.e., conex box)

Maybellene Gamboa, PhD CANDIDATE!!

The Funk Lab welcomes Rebecca Cheek to the lab!

Rebecca catches dinner from the Ucayali River, Peru.

The Funk Lab welcomes its newest PhD student–Rebecca Cheek–to the lab. Rebecca hails from Fairbanks, Alaska, where she grew up and completed her bachelor’s degree at the University of Alaska. She will be working on the genomics, evolutionary ecology, and conservation of the fascinating […]

Maybellene Gamboa wins prize for best poster at the 2016 Society for Integrative and Comparative Biology Annual Meeting!!

Maybellene Gamboa holding her study species, the Channel Islands Song Sparrow (Melospiza melodia graminea)

Congratulations to Maybellene Gamboa (co-advised by Cameron Ghalambor, T. Scott Sillett, and W. Chris Funk) for winning the Ray B. Huey Award for Best Student Poster Presentation in the Division of Ecology and Evolution at the 2016 Society […]

Courtney Hofman’s paper on rapid evolution of dwarf island foxes accepted!

Photo by Julie King

Courtney Hofman (Smithsonian Institution) and colleagues used whole mitochondrial genomes to investigate the evolutionary history of island foxes, which occupy 6 of the 8 California Channel Islands. Our results are consistent with initial fox colonization of the Channel Islands probably by rafting or human introduction ~9200-7100 years ago, […]

New paper by Dr. Katie Langin and colleagues on adaptive divergence in a single population of Island Scrub-Jays

Island Scrub-Jay (Aphelocoma insularis) (Photo credit: Katie Langin)

Adaptive divergence within populations is thought to be rare due to the constraining effects of gene flow. Surprisingly, Dr. Katie Langin and colleagues found repeated adaptive divergence in bill size and shape in Island Scrub-Jays (Aphelocoma insularis) in three separate stands of pine surrounded […]

Maybellene Gamboa awarded an NSF Graduate Research Fellowship!!!

Congrats to May Gamboa for being awarded an NSF Graduate Research Fellowship!!! Now she’ll have time to sample ALL of the Song Sparrows on the Channel Islands!