Simone Des Roches, Ph.D.
illustrator, naturalist

I study:
intraspecific variation (diversity within species) as the crux of the relationship between 
ecology (habitat use, ecomorphology, food webs, demographics)
evolution (ongoing natural selection, adaptation)
in geologically young, novel, & dynamic ecosystems

Postdoctoral Fellow (July 2016 - present)
Advisor: E. Palkovacs
Institute for the Study of Ecological Effects of Climate Impacts
The University of California, Santa Cruz, CA, USA


Adjunct Faculty (2015 - 2016)
Department of Biology
St Mary's College of California, Moraga, CA, USA 

Berkeley Connect Fellow (2014 - 2015)
Advisors: E.B. Rosenblum, J. Brashares, D. Winickoff
Department of Environmental Science, Policy, & Management
The University of California, Berkeley, CA, USA

PhD (2008 - 2014)
Advisors: E.B. Rosenblum, L.J. Harmon
Department of Biology
The University of Idaho, Moscow, ID, USA

BSc Honours (2002 - 2007)
Advisors: D. Schluter, J. Shurin
Department of Zoology
The University of British Columbia, Vancouver, BC, Canada

research focus:

As an evolutionary ecologist, I focus on the importance of ecological interactions within the context of evolution. Specifically: how does a species phenotype affect its interactions with the surrounding environment, and how do these surroundings affect its course of evolution? Young, dynamic ecosystems and their recent colonists are the settings for my inquiry into eco-evolutionary relationships. 

For my Ph.D., I studied rapid evolutionary & ecological changes
 lizard colonists of White Sands, NM. 
Specifically, I sought to
(1) understand ecological changes (resource use, ecomorphology) that occur as a result of colonization and adaptation in a new ecosystem, and 
(2) measure the changing pressures of natural selection that occur as a result of inhabiting a new ecosystem.
For my postdoctoral research, I study the impacts of climate change (drought & El Niño) on the ecology (diet, survival, growth) and evolution (selection vs gene flow) of threespine stickleback in Californian estuaries


When I was four years old I wanted to be a paleontologist. I remember asking my father what colour dinosaurs were. He replied, "Well, Simone, no one knows, but someday you could discover that." 

My whole life, I maintained the idea that I could grow up and make discoveries about the natural world. I specialized in ecology for my BSc and my honour’s project focused on the influence of fish evolution on surrounding ecosystems. I did my PhD on ecological and evolutionary diversity in desert lizards. After teaching for a year at St Mary's College of California, I am now beginning a postdoc at UC Santa Cruz on the ecological and evolutionary impacts of climate change in Californian estuaries.

Also, most importantly, I love dragons and bunnies.

are you interested in enhancing your presentations 
and publications with an artist's rendering of your study species? 
please, email me about biological illustration

the material on this site is the intellectual property of Simone Des Roches 2010
this page was last updated 7-December-2017