Feb. 11: Darwin Day Speaker Celebrates Genetics & Guppies

Dr. Bleakley is Chair of the Biology Department at Stonehill College.

Bleakley comes to Stonehill from Smith College where she served as a lecturer in genetics (2009-10). Prior to that, she was a National Science Foundation (NSF) international research fellow based jointly at the Centre for Ecology and Conservation at University of Exeter, Cornwall and Northern Arizona University. Her teaching appointments have included stints at the University of Virginia, Indiana University, and the University of Arizona.
In 2007, Bleakley received the William J. Rowland Mentor of the Year and Outstanding Associate Instructor of the Year Awards at Indiana University. Bleakley’s research focuses on the evolutionary genetics of social behavior. She uses inbred and wild lines of guppies to explore how the genetic component of the social environment influences antipredator behavior and cooperation. She also uses invertebrates to understand the genetics of cannibalism and how social selection acts on cannibalism. She is planning projects exploring how genetic variation interacts with social organization to influence behavior. These projects were supported by the National Science Foundation and Animal Behavior Society.

  • B.S., 1997, Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, University of Arizona
  • Ph.D., 2007 Biology, Indiana University
  • Area Certificate in Animal Behavior, 2007, Center for the Integrative Study of Animal Behavior, Indiana University

Selected Publications:

  • House CM, Bleakley BH, Walling CA, Price TA, Stamper CE & Moore AJ. (In press) The influence of maternal effects on indirect benefits associated with polyandry. Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences.
  • Bleakley, B.H., J. Wolf, and A.J. Moore. (2010) Evolutionary quantitative genetics of social behaviour pp. 29-54 in Social behaviour: genes, ecology and evolution. T. Szekely, A.J. Moore, J. Komdeur, and M. Griffiths, eds. Cambridge, Cambridge University Press.
  • Bleakley, B.H. and E.D. Brodie III. (2009) Indirect genetic effects influence antipredator behavior in guppies: estimates of the coefficient of interaction psi and the inheritance of reciprocity. Evolution 63(7): 1796–1806.
  • Bleakley, B.H., A.C. Eklund and E.D. Brodie III. (2008) Are designer guppies inbred? Microsatellite variation in five strains of ornamental guppies used for behavioral research. Zebrafish 5(1):39-48.

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