Faculty of Biology - Evolutionary Biology
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Bielefeld University > biologie > Evolutionary Biology > mitarbeiter

Navina Lilie

Office: VHF-274
Phone: +49 (0)521-106 2707
email: navina.lilie"at"uni-bielefeld.de

Current research

The question of my research project regards to adaptive conformance to social niches and its proximate mechanisms. Although Zebra finches (Taeniopygia guttata) are known to be monogamous and conduct bipaternal care, extra-pair copulation occurs occasionally. Hence, male individuals face a trade-off securing fertilisations versus parental investment in response to the extent of sexual competition. In our project, we want to investigate how individual variation in sexual competition generates individual variation, and covariation, in both competitive traits and parenting behaviour. Therefore, I use an experimental setup consisting two conditions that vary in sperm competition risk (SCR), i.e. the presence/absence of an ejaculate rival. For my project, I investigate the plasticity of the behavioural phenotype in pre-and postcopulatory competitiveness and male parental care in response to SCR by using behavioural observations as well as endocrinological measurements (subproject A). This work is strongly connected to subproject B, which evaluates ejaculate traits and transcriptomic mechanisms in the model system.


Sexual selection, Social niche conformance, Phenotypic adjustment, Sexual competition, Male parental care


since 2018 PhD student at the Department of Animal Behaviour/Evolutionary Biology of the University of Bielefeld.
Project title: Male sexual competition as a social niche dimension: adaptive niche conformance and its proximate mechanisms in a species with male parental care (subproject A).
Supervisors: PD Dr. Tim Schmoll and Dr. Peter Korsten
This project is part of the SFB-TRR 212: NC³: A Novel Synthesis of Individualisation across Behaviour, Ecology and Evolution: Niche Choice, Niche Conformance, Niche Construction.
2012-2015 M.Sc. Developmental, Neural, and Behavioural Biology at the Georg-August University of Göttingen;
Thesis: Dynamics of parasite transmission through the social network of Barbary macaques at Affenberg Salem
2009-2012 B.Sc. Biology at the Georg-August University of Göttingen;
Thesis: Influence of injuries and handicaps on the behaviour of primates