The Kikuchi lab works at the intersection of evolution, ecology, and behavior. We study how organisms use information to make adaptive decisions, how they evolve to send information (signaling), and the consequences that information exchange has for ecological communities. This lets us look at problems from alternative perspectives in separate organisms. For example, we ask how venomous snakes evolve a bright color patterns, and how predatory birds recognize and avoid dangerous snakes.
Topics we work on include: warning signals and mimicry, social learning, behavioral innovation, floral signals, and avian ecology
We use an integrative approach to answering our questions: 1) field work 2) mathematical modeling 3) museum specimens 4) lab work
Above, each column is a single species of Oreina leaf beetle, and each row is a Müllerian mimicry ring. Photo credit: S. Waldron