Emanuel Toussaint

Postdoctoral Researcher
Primary office:
Public Safety Building
Room 140G
University of Kansas


Research interests:

I am studying the factors governing the rise and fall of tropical insect biodiversity over space and time. My research principally focuses on diversification patterns and processes of water beetles (Dytiscidae and Hydrophilidae), butterflies (Nymphalidae and Papilionidae), weevils (Curculionidae) and moths (Noctuidae). I am currently working on the following projects:

- Studying the biogeogaphy of Neotropical clades using fine-scale phylogeogaphy and niche modelling (Dysticidae and Hydrophilidae) and large-scale phylogenetic reconstructions (Nymphalidae).

- Testing the impact of geological assemblages and climatic disruptions on the evolution of the Indomalayan-Australasian insects (Curculionidae, Dytiscidae, Nymphalidae and Papilionidae) with a particular focus on the role of Lydekker's and Wallace's lines on biogeographic patterns.

- Reconstructing the temporal and geographic origin of major crop pests (Noctuidae) in the Afrotropics with a strong emphasis on the impact of the C3-C4 plant transition on diversification during the Miocene.

- Inferring comprehensive phylogenetic trees to understand the underlying mechanisms of lineage diversification at a large scale (Dytiscidae, Hydrophilidae and Nymphalidae).

- Investigating the efficiency of molecular species delimitation to delineate valid taxonomic species in combination with additional lines of evidence (ecology, morphology...) in cryptic complexes (Noctuidae) and charismatic groups (Nymphalidae and Papilionidae).

Recent publications:

Toussaint EFA, Condamine FL, Hawlitschek O, Watts CHS, Porch N, Hendrich L, Balke M (2015) Unveiling the diversification dynamics of Australasian predaceous diving beetles in the Cenozoic. Systematic Biology, 64(1):3-24.

Toussaint EFA, Hall R, Monaghan M, Sagata K, Ibalim S, Shaverdo HV, Vogler AP, Pons J, Balke M (2014) The towering orogeny of New Guinea as a trigger for arthropod megadiversity. Nature Communications, 5:4001.

Tänzler R, Toussaint EFA, Suhardjono YR, Balke M, Riedel A (2014) Multiple transgressions of Wallace’s Line explain diversity of flightless Trigonopterus weevils on Bali. Proceedings of the Royal Society B, 281(1782):20132528.

Toussaint EFA, Sagata K, Surbakti S, Hendrich L, Balke M (2013) Australasian sky islands act as a diversity pump facilitating peripheral speciation and complex reversal from narrow endemic to widespread ecological supertramp. Ecology and Evolution. 3(4):1031-1049.

Condamine FL, Toussaint EFA, Cotton A, Sperling FAH, Genson G, Kergoat GJ (2013) Fine-scale biogeographic and temporal diversification processes of peacock swallowtails (Papilio subgenus Achillides) in the Indo-Australian Archipelago. Cladistics, 29(1):88-111.

Recent presentations:

Toussaint EFA, Hall R, Monaghan M, Sagata K, Ibalim S, Shaverdo HV, Vogler AP, Pons J, Balke M. The towering orogeny of New Guinea as a trigger for arthropod megadiversity. 10th European Congress of Entomology (3-8 August 2014, York, England).

Toussaint EFA, Condamine FL, Hawlitschek O, Watts CHS, Porch N, Hendrich L, Balke M. Unveiling the diversification dynamics of Australasian predaceous diving beetles in the Cenozoic. 33rd Meeting of the Willi Hennig Society (6-10 July 2014, Trento, Italy).

Toussaint EFA, Condamine FL, Hawlitschek O, Watts CHS, Hendrich L, Balke M. Unveiling the diversification dynamics of Australasian predaceous diving beetles in the Cenozoic. International Biogeography Society Early Career Conference (7-10 January 2014, Canberra, Australia).

Toussaint EFA, Hall R, Monaghan M, Sagata K, Ibalim S, Shaverdo HV, Vogler AP, Pons J, Balke M. Deciphering the origins of massive radiations in the New Guinean archipelago. Entomology 2013 – The Entomological Society of America 61st Annual Meeting (10-13 November 2013, Austin, USA).

Toussaint EFA, Condamine FL, Hawlitschek O, Watts CHS, Hendrich L, Balke M. Evolutionary dynamics of beetles during the Australian drying-out. Entomology 2013 – The Entomological Society of America 61st Annual Meeting (10-13 November 2013, Austin, USA).


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