Kenneth H. Kozak
Assistant Professor, Department of Fisheries, Wildlife, and Conservation Biology
Curator of Amphibians and Reptiles, Bell Museum of Natural History
Ph.D., Washington University
Graduate Faculty Memberships
Fields of Interest
Phylogeography, molecular ecology, and historical biogeography of amphibians and reptiles; biodiversity informatics; applications of GIS to evolutionary biology, ecology, and conservation biology.
Amphibian and Reptile Collection at the Bell Museum
Research in my laboratory uses amphibians and reptiles as a study system to understand the evolutionary and ecological mechanisms by which species diversify and accumulate through time. Much of our work involves reconstructing the evolutionary history of populations and species using molecular data. We then combine that information with spatial-environmental data to investigate how climatic variation, geology, and other features of the landscape influence patterns of genetic variation and species diversity. Ongoing research in the lab is focused on (1) phylogeography and speciation in temperate and tropical salamanders, (2) the influence of climate change on the evolution and persistence of montane amphibians, and (3) understanding how evolutionary history and climatic variation interact to drive latitudinal and elevational variation in species diversity.
- Kozak, K.H., and Wiens, J.J. 2012. Phylogeny, ecology, and the origins of climate-richness relationships. Ecology (in press).
- Gifford, M.E, and Kozak, K.H. 2011. Islands in the sky or squeezed at the top? Ecological causes of elevational range limits in montane salamanders. Ecography. DOI: 10.1111/j.1600-0587.2011.06866. Publishe online, 07/14/2011.
- Kozak, K.H., and Wiens J.J. 2010. Accelerated rates of climatic-niche evolution underlie rapid species diversification. Ecology Letters 13:1378-1389.
- Chatfield, M.W.H, Kozak, K.H., Fitzpatrick, B.M., and P.K. Tucker. 2010. Patterns of differential introgression in a salamander hybrid zone: inferences from genetic data and ecological niche modeling. Molecular Ecology 19:4265-4282.
- Harmon, L.J., Losos, J.B., Davies, J.T., Gillespie, R.G., Gittleman, J.L, Jennings, W.B., Kozak, K.H., McPeek, M.A., Moreno-Roark, F., Near, T.J., Purvis, A., Ricklefs, R.E., Schluter, D., Schutle, J.A.II, Seehausen, O., Sidlauskas, B.L., Torres-Carvajal, O., Weir, J.T., and A. Mooers. 2010. Early bursts of body size and shape evolution are rare in comparative data. Evolution 64:2385-2396.
- Kozak, K.H., and J.J. Wiens. 2010. Niche conservatism drives elevational diversity patterns in Appalachian salamanders. American Naturalist (In press).
- McKay, B.D., Mays, H.L. Jr, Peng, Y., Kozak, K.H., Yao, T., and J. Yuan. 2010. Recent range-wide demographic expansion in a Taiwain endemic montane bird, Steere’s Liocichla (Liocichla steeri). 2010. BMC Evolutionary Biology 10:71.