Chelsea Stehle

Ph.D. Student Profile Image
Ph.D. Student Biological Sciences Advisor: W. Wagner Manter Hall 050

Research Interests

Phenotypic plasticity is the ability of a single genotype to produce multiple phenotypes in response to different environments, enabling individuals to produce phenotypes that maximize fitness in the current environment. Phenotypic plasticity in female mate choice behavior has been particularly well studied. Females have been experimentally shown to adjust their choice of males based on a variety of intrinsic and extrinsic environmental conditions. Changes in these internal and external conditions can affect both the costs and the benefits of being choosy, and plasticity allows females to maximize the net benefits of choice given the prevailing conditions. While there is some evidence that phenotypic plasticity in female mate choice can be adaptive, we still know little about how plasticity in mate choice evolves within a population. I am interested in investigating genetic variability of phenotypic plasticity and how populations that do have variation in phenotypic plasticity will respond to selection within and across populations.

  • Ecology, Evolution & Behavior (EEB)
  • Dr. William Wagner