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Do animals have a preference when they choose their mates? Why does an individual prefer a particular mate over another? What are the cues responsible for individual recognition and mate choice? Do individuals with particular genotypes have higher fitness than the others? Our lab uses field and molecular approaches to answer these questions. We study how the genome-wide diversity and candidate genes such as the major histocompatibility complex (MHC) genes affect mate choice and fitness in non-model species. We also study the co-evolution between host and pathogens. Our research systems include vertebrates such as birds and mammals, as well as invertebrates.

Example Past & On-going Projects

Genetic basis of mate choice
MHC-based mate choice identified in the European badger (Sin et al. 2015) and Leach’s storm petrel (Hoover et al. 2018)


Inbreeding depression
Maternal effects on chick traits in Leach’s storm petrels (Sin et al. 2021)

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Mating system
Genetic mating system and extra-pair paternity (Annavi et al. 2014; Sin et al. 2021)

Foraging ecology and niche partitioning
(Huang et al. 2021; Lee et al. 2021; Huang et al. 2022)

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