Christopher H. Haufler, Ph.D.

College of Liberal Arts and Sciences - Ecology & Evolutionary Biology
Chair, Ecology & Evolutionary Biology
Ph.D., Indiana University
Primary office:
Haworth Hall
Room 7008
University of Kansas
1200 Sunnyside Avenue
Lawrence, KS 66045-2106


Dr. Christopher Haufler studies the systematics, evolution, biogeography, and population genetics of ferns.


Ph.D., Indiana University

M.S., Indiana University


Teaching Interests

  • Organismal Biology
  • Botany


Reconstructing the phylogeny of the fern family Polypodiaceae using a combination of features from DNA sequencing, morphology, and biogeography. I am collaborating on this study with Drs. Tom Ranker (University of Colorado, Boulder) and Alan Smith (University of California, Berkeley).

Studying patterns and processes of speciation in ferns using analysis of breeding systems, population biology, and ecology. Focusing on patterns of ecology and biogeography provides hypotheses of change over space and time that can be tested. I anticipate continuing these investigations. I am also interested in the impact that polyploidy has had on fern genomes and studying how the genetic systems of ferns have been influenced by their polyploid histories. Finally, I am pursuing revisions of the genera that constitute the reconstituted family Polypodiaceae.

Research Interests

  • Systematics
  • Ferns
  • Speciation
  • Botany

Selected Publications

Haufler, C. (2016). A community-derived classification for extant lycophytes and ferns. Journal of Systematics and Evolution, 54(6), 563-603.

Haufler, C. H., Pryer, K. M., Schuettpelz, E. Sessa, E. B., Farrar, D. R., Moran, R. Schneller, J. J., Watkins, J. E., & Windham, M. D. (2016). Sex and the single gametophyte: Revising the homosporous vascular plant life cycle in light of contemporary research. Bioscience, 66, 928-937.

Sigel, E. M., Johnson, A. K., & Haufler, C. H. (2014). A first record of Polypodium saximontanum for the flora of Montana. American Fern Journal, 104, 22-23.

Haufler, C. H. (2014). Ever Since Klekowski: Testing a Set of Radical Hypotheses Revives the Genetics of Ferns and Lycophytes. American Journal of Botany, 101, 2036–2042.

Sigel, E. M., Windham, M. D., Haufler, C. H., & Pryer, K. M. (2014). Phylogeny, divergence time estimates, and phylogeography of the diploid species of the Polypodium vulgare complex. Systematic Botany, 39, 1042–1055.

Haufler, C. H., & Wang, Z. (2013). Cystopteris. In , Flora of China (Vol. 2-3, pp. 261-266 ). St. Louis: Missouri Botanical Garden Press.

Haufler, C. H., & Shugang, L. (2013). Polypodium. In , Flora of China (Vol. 2-3, pp. 838-839). St. Louis: Missouri Botanical Garden Press.

Arrigo, N. Therrien, J. Anderson, C. L., Windham, M. D., Haufler, C. H., & Barker, M. S. (2013). A total evidence approach to understanding phylogenetic relationships and ecological diversity in Selaginella subg. Tetragonostachys. American journal of botany, 100(8), 1672-82. DOI:10.3732/ajb.1200426

Hemingway, C. Dahl, W. Haufler, C. H., & Stuessy, C. (2011). Building Botanical Literacy. Science, 1535-1536.

Stein, D. B., Hutton, C. Contant, D. S., Haufler, C. H., & Werth, C. R. (2010). Reconstructing Dryopteris semicristata (Dryopteridaceae): molecular profiles of tetraploids verify their undiscovered diploid ancestor. American Journal of Botany, 97, 998-1004.

Haufler, C. H. (2009). Gels and Genetics: The Historical Impact of Isozymes on paradigm shifts in hypotheses about fern evolutionary biology. American Fern Journal, 99, 125-128.

Haufler, C. H., & Sundberg, M. (2009). Symposium on scientific literacy: Introduction. American Journal of Botany, 96, 1751-1752.

Ranker, T. A., & Haufler, C. H. (2008). The Biology and Evolution of Ferns and Lycophytes, Cambridge University Press.

Haufler, C. H. (2007). Genetics, phylogenetics, and biogeography: Considering how shifting paradigms and continents influence fern diversity. Brittonia, 59, 108-114.

Smith, A. R., Kreier, H. Schneider, H. Haufler, C. H., & Ranker, T. A. (2006). Serpocaulon (Polypodiaceae), a new genus segregated from old Polypodium. Taxon, 55, 919-930.

Sciarretta, K. L., Arbuckle, E. P., Werth, C. R., & Haufler, C. H. (2005). Patterns of genetic variation in southern Appalachian populations of Athyrium filix-femina var. asplenioides (Dryopteridaceae). International Journal of Plant Science, 166, 761-780.

Haufler, C. H., Smith, A. R., Ranker, T. A., & Schneider, H. (2004). A tale of two mechanisms: Discovering how dispersal and vicariance contributed to the pattern of species diversity in the “polygrams.”. Abstract of Presentation at Botanical Society of American meeting.

Schneider, H. Janssen, T. Hovenkamp, P. Smith, A. R., Haufler, C. H., & Ranker, T. (2004). Phylogenetic relationships of the enigmatic Malesian fern Thylacopteris (Polypodiaceae, Polypodiidae). International Journal of Plant Science, 165, 1077-108.

Ranker, T. A., Smith, A. R., Haufler, C. H., & Schneider, H. (2004). Phylogeny and evolution of grammitid ferns (Grammitidaceae): a case of rampant morphological homoplasy. Taxon, 53, 415-428.

Schneider, H. Smith, A. R., Cranfill, R. Hildebrand, T. J., Haufler, C. H., & Ranker, T. A. (2004). Unraveling the phylogeny of polygrammoid ferns (Polypodiaceae & Grammitidaceae): Exploring aspects of the diversification of epiphytic plants. Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution , 31, 1041-1063.

» Show All Publications

    KU-calendar-full event list: EEB Seminars
    EEB Seminars

    EEB Seminars
    Due to COVID-19, ALL BIO3 seminars and Ecology seminars have been cancelled for the remainder of the Spring semester.

    Stay safe and wash your hands!




    One of 34 U.S. public institutions in the prestigious Association of American Universities
    44 nationally ranked graduate programs.
    —U.S. News & World Report
    Top 50 nationwide for size of library collection.
    5th nationwide for service to veterans —"Best for Vets: Colleges," Military Times
    KU Today