Previous Next / Chipmunk Evolutionary Biology I have been working on a truly fascinating and diverse group of mammals—western chipmunks—over the last 20 years. There are 23 species and extensive diversity within each species. The research has focused on many aspects of their evolutionary biology through extensive fieldwork, genetics and genomics, morphology, and parasites. This has included unraveling phylogenetic relationships among the 23 species, identifying potentially new species, examining the phylogeography of individual species, assessing hybridization between some of the species, investigating genital bone diversity and evolution, understanding co-divergence of chipmunks and some of their parasites (sucking lice, nematodes), learning more about their basic natural history and distribution, and recently, exploring the possibility of phylosymbiosis (similarity between microbiomes mirrors the evolutionary relatedness of the hosts) in chipmunks. None of this would have been possible without the efforts of my long-term collaborators and their students, including Jack Sullivan (University of Idaho), Jeff Good (University of Montana), Kayce Bell (Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County), and funding from the Denver Museum of Nature & Science and the National Science Foundation (#0716200).