Hamel publishes research with three Elon alumni in peer-reviewed Journal of Insect Science

Assistant Professor Jen Hamel's co-authors on the peer-reviewed research article include three recent Elon graduates who contributed to the study as part of their undergraduate research experiences.

Jen Hamel, an assistant professor in the Departments of Biology and Environmental Studies, recently published an article on the reproductive costs of hybridization in the disciplinary Journal of Insect Science.

Hamel’s article “Reproductive Costs for Hybridizing Female Anasa tristis (Hemiptera: Coreidae), but No Evidence of Selection Against Interspecific Mating” was co-authored by Elon College, the College of Arts & Sciences alumni Emma Eskeland ’17 (biology), Tyler Lehmann ’16 (environmental studies), and Paige Stover’16 (biology).

This study reported the results of a study conducted during summer and fall 2015 during which the authors examined the consequences of hybridization between two closely related species of insects. The findings suggest that although hybridization can be very costly for females, there is no evidence that discrimination against such matings by females is evolving.

To explain their findings, the authors suggest that hybridization may be rare in nature, and that females may abolish the costs of hybridizing by remating.

Understanding the ecological and evolutionary consequences of hybridization is one main focus of research in Hamel’s laboratory, and her work in this area has been supported by Elon Summer Faculty Fellowships.