We are thrilled to welcome Chris Smaga and Josiah Johnson to the lab! Chris earned his undergraduate degree from SIU where he studied snake fungal disease. In the Parrott Lab, Chris will be investigating the developmental origins and pathways underlying epigenetic variation across natural populations of alligators. Josiah hails from Colby College where he focused on advancing Northern black racer conservation. Josiah is planning to study how life history traits and reproductive development vary across amphibian communities along a contaminant gradient of Carolina Bays. Welcome guys!!
Yeraldi is doctoral student in Shane Campbell-Staton's lab at UCLA and is collaborating with us this summer. Samantha and Yeraldi are interested in discovering the determinants of alligator hatchling survival and how these traits are influenced by environment-by-embryo interactions during development. I don't want to give away any spoilers, but this project is HUGE! We are super excited to have Yeraldi at the lab-- welcome Yeraldi!!
The lab was recently awarded a NSF grant to investigate how epigenetic aging dynamics interact with ecological and environmental factors to affect organismal function and variation in life history traits. This work will build on Emily's work using the medaka fish model to develop epigenetic aging clocks. We will be recruiting undergraduates, graduate students, and a postdoc, so keep an eye on the opportunities page or reach out to Ben (firstname.lastname@example.org) if interested!
With the help of awesome collaborators and friends, Laura was able to get a nice start on her masters project examining how environmental contaminants affect behavior and movement and conversely, how does animal movement influence the way in which contaminants are distributed across the landscape! Laura has posted updates (with nice pictures) on our lab twitter account (@lab_parrott). Beyond everyone in our lab and awesome co-investigator Tracey Tuberville, Thomas Rainwater (Clemson, mask below) and Kurt Buhlmann (see below) have been especially generous with their time and expertise!