Students, Professor Present Research at the University of The Bahamas San Salvador

August 10 2017
Category: Academics

Earlier this summer, Dr. Daniel Kjar, Associate Professor of Biology, and two research students, Ashley Miller ’18 and Bridget Yaw ’20, attended the Second Joint Symposium on the Natural History and Geology of The Bahamas, at the University of The Bahamas San Salvador.  

During the symposium, held at the Gerace Research Centre, Dr. Kjar shared a presentation titled, “Dorymyrmex Antillana, Red Imported Fire Ants, and the Long Horned Crazy Ant: A Look at What I Have Learned About the Ant Community on San Salvador."

Dr. Kjar also shared research recently completed with alumnus, Zachory Park ’17, through a poster titled, “The Impact of Habitat Type on the Competitive Interactions Between Alien Fire Ants and Ant Species Assemblages on San Salvador Island, The Bahamas.”

Miller and Yaw presented their joint research, “Genetic Diversity at Six Microsatellite Markers in the Long Horned Crazy Ant of San Salvador Island, The Bahamas, and its Association with Habitat Dominance,” during the poster session portion of the symposium.

After the conference, the group stayed on the island for two weeks to continue their research. They conducted behavioral observations on ant competitive interactions at baits and were able to excavate a Dorymyrmex antillanus nest, recovering three dealate, or wingless queens, thus demonstrating that this species is likely polygynous.

During the upcoming academic year, Miller and Yaw will continue to work on the genetic analysis of the group’s Paratrechina longicornis specimens from San Salvador Island. Additionally, Dr. Kjar plans to return to The Bahamas during Term III to teach a course on marine and island ecology with Dr. Betsy Smith, Assistant Professor of Biochemistry.