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Dr. Sterling Nesbitt

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Dr. Nesbitt’s research group at Virginia Tech centers on the evolution of vertebrates, particularly reptiles, over the last 300 million years. He is interested in influences of Earth processes on macroevolutionary events (mass extinction and adaptive radiations), morphological and taxonomic diversity, the consequence of latitudinal differences on an organism’s biogeography, comparative methods in phylogenetics, developmental influences on convergent evolution, and faunal evolution. A specialist on the reptile group that includes dinosaurs, birds, and crocodylians, Dr. Nesbitt is particularly interested in the rise of the living reptile fauna from its roots 230 million years ago. Most recently, he has started to incorporate questions focused on morphological change in invasive reptiles in Florida into his research program. 

Dr. Nesbitt is academically well traveled; undergraduate degree in Integrative Biology from the University of California, Berkeley; a PhD from Columbia University in Geosciences; a postdoctoral fellowship (NSF sponsored) from The University of Texas at Austin in Geosciences; a postdoctoral fellowship (NSF sponsored) at the University of Washington in Biology; and a postdoctoral fellowship (Meeker) at the Field Museum of Natural History.