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Ph.D Student, Greg Byrnes


Research interests
My interests focus on the ecological and biomechanical contexts of gliding in mammals. Gliding has evolved six times in extant mammals, but despite this, little is known about how gliding affects the biology of these organisms. The goals of my research are to understand under what ecological conditions gliding has evolved and how extant gliders use this unique locomotor mode. Currently, I am examining the locomotor behavior of two groups of gliding mammals, flying squirrels and colugos. I am examining the ability of these animals to modulate aerodynamic forces with the goal of understanding how they navigate their spatially complex habitat. To examine this system, I use a variety of biomechanical techniques in both the lab and field. Recently we developed a data-logger that allows collection of kinetic data from free-ranging animals in their natural habitat.  Using this tool and traditional radio-telemetry and observational data, it is possible to study both the biomechanics underlying gliding locomotion, and the ecological contexts in which animals use this behavior.

For more information on the colugo project check out:

R. Dudley  R. Buchwald  S. Combes    S. Horisawa    G. Byrnes    C. Clark    M.J.Fernández    R. Hill    M. Medeiros