Birds catch the public imagination like no other group of animals; in addition, birders are perhaps the largest non-professional naturalist community. Genomics and associated bioinformatics have revolutionised daily life in just a few decades. At the same time, this development has facilitated the application of genomics technology to ecological and evolutionary studies, including biodiversity and conservation at all levels.
Avian Genomics in Ecology and Evolution reveals how the exciting toolbox of genomics offers new opportunities in all areas of avian biology. It presents contributions from prominent experts at the intersection of avian biology and genomics, and offers an ideal introduction to the world of genomics for students, biologists and bird enthusiasts alike. The book begins with a historical perspective on how genomic technology was adopted by bird ecology and evolution research groups. This led, as the book explains, to a revised understanding of avian evolution, with exciting consequences for biodiversity research as a whole. Lastly, these impacts are illustrated using seminal examples and the latest discoveries from avian biology laboratories around the world.
Chapter 1. An introduction to "Avian Genomics in Ecology and Evolution - From the lab into the wild"
Chapter 2. A Historical Perspective of Avian Genomics
Chapter 3. Avian Genomics in Animal Breeding and the end of the model organism
Chapter 4. Avian chromosomal evolution
Chapter 5. Repetitive DNA - the dark matter of avian genomics
Chapter 6. Resolving the avian tree of life from top to bottom: The promise and potential boundaries of the phylogenomic era
Chapter 7. Avian Species Concepts in the Light of Genomics
Chapter 8. Population Genomics and Phylogeography
Chapter 9. Avian population studies in the genomic era
Chapter 10. The Contribution of Genomics to Bird Conservation
Chapter 11. Jurassic Spark: What did the genomes of dinosaurs look like?
Robert Kraus is an Assistant Professor affiliated with both the Max Planck Institute of Ornithology and Konstanz University in Germany. After graduating in Biology from the Goethe University in Frankfurt, he completed a PhD in genome-wide genetic marker discovery and population genetics in mallard ducks at Wageningen University, the Netherlands. After a brief sojourn in applied nature conservation genetics at the Senckenberg Institute he returned to the study of the molecular ecology of ducks and other waterfowl in his current position, especially with a disease ecology focus and emphasizing functional variation across whole genomes. Dr Kraus is an active contributor to the international bird ten thousand genomes (B10K) consortium, where he leads the immunome working group, and works with the Vertebrate Genome Project in the Genome 10K (VGP/G10K) framework, which is setting new standards in the reference genome assembly of non-model species for comparative genomics using cutting-edge genome sequencing technology.