Bronwyn Williams

Ph.D. 2012

Bronwyn Williams with crayfish in traps nr Wainwright smlBronwyn worked with Heather Proctor and Dr. David Coltman on phylogeography and population genetics of Orconectes virilis, the Northern Crayfish, and on the ecology, phylogeny, and biogeography of crayfish symbionts. Orconectes virilis is one of the most widespread crayfish in North America, and its range has increased rapidly in recent decades. She used genetic tools to test hypotheses about how this species has moved across the continent (natural dispersal vs human-aided), but also examined morphological, environmental, and symbiont data. Bronwyn found interesting mismatches in distributions of the branchiobdellidan worms and entocytherid ostracods that live symbiotically onO. virilis throughout some, but not all, of their host’s range. In collaboration with Dr. Stuart Gelder, she continues to work on unraveling phylogenetic and systematic relationships of the Branchiobdellida using molecular, morphological, and ecological data.