Morgan Oberweiser

Doctoral researcher (PhD student)

Zoologisches Institut und Museum
Allgemeine und Systematische Zoologie

Loitzer Str. 26
17489 Greifswald
Gebäude 3.3, Raum 0.48

Tel.: +49 (0)3834 420-4245

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Research Interests

I am broadly interested in the behavioral and sensory ecology of arthropods of all types, especially in how these apply in the context of mating. I’m curious about how signals are sent through and perceived from the environment, how different sensory modes interact during communication, and how these cues impact subjects’ decisions and behaviors. In the past I have completed projects on the auditory, vibrational, visual, and olfactory senses in ants, butterflies, and crickets. I’m also interested in morphology, and I’ve studied morphological systems of ants, termites, crickets, and short-tailed whip scorpions.

Current Projects

My current work explores the functional role that vibration plays in the mating system of the nursery web spider Pisaura mirabilis, which is additionally complicated by a nuptial gift-giving behavior during courtship. I am specifically interested in how effectively the vibrational signals of males confer fitness information to the females, and whether or not these signals will vary based on the quality of the male’s nuptial gift. See here for more details on the project.

Curriculum Vitae
October 2019 - February 2022 M.Sc. Evolution, Ecology and Systematics: Ludwig-Maximilians Universität München. Munich, Germany - Masters thesis: Route fidelity and navigation task training in desert ant Cataglyphis fortis
August 2014 - April 2018 B.S. Evolution and Ecology, B.A. Music Performance: The Ohio State University. Columbus OH, USA
Talks and posters
Oberweiser, M. Idiosyncrasy and cue modality in desert ant navigation. Talk presented at the 2020/2021 Winter Semester LMU Evolution, Ecology, and Systematics Conference
Oberweiser, M., Joachim T. Haug. Ants vs. Termites: SHAPE analysis of functional head region in eusocial insects. Poster presented at the 2020 Summer Semester LMU Evolution, Ecology, and Systematics Conference.
Oberweiser, M. Audio analysis in experimentally diverged cricket lines. Talk presented at the 2019/2020 Winter Semester LMU Evolution, Ecology, and Systematics Conference.
Oberweiser, M., Z. Beres, J.Z. Shik, & R.M.M. Adams. Unraveling a Panamanian caterpillar/ant mutualism. Poster presented at the Ohio State University Fall Undergraduate Research Forum
Scholarships, Grants, Awards
2021 Best Poster Award at the 2020 Summer Semester LMU Evolution, Ecology, and Systematics Conference
2020 Lehre@LMU Student Research Award, provided funding for research in the Tuni Cricket Lab
2017 Keith and Linda Monda Study Abroad Scholarship, provided funding for the Tropical Behavioral Ecology and Evolution field course in Gamboa, Panama
Professional Affiliations
Ethologische Gesellschaft e.V.
Research experience
Research internships
December 2020 – February 2022 Student researcher in the Odor-Guided Behavior Group, Max Planck Institute for Chemical Ecology Department of Evolutionary Neuroethology; studying desert ant navigation
September 2020 – January 2022 Student researcher in the Haug Lab, Ludwig-Maximilians Universität Department of Zoology II and GeoBio Center; studying morphological characteristics of ants, termites, and short-tailed whip scorpions
October 2019 – October 2021 Student researcher in the Tuni Cricket Lab, Ludwig-Maximilians Universität Department of Behavioral Ecology; studying bioacoustic and morphological aspects of cricket courtship
July 2018 – July 2019 Intern at the Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute, Gamboa Panama; studying mating behavior of Heliconius butterflies
July 2017 – July 2018 Intern at the Adams Mega Ant Lab, Ohio State University Department of Evolution, Ecology, and Organismal Biology; studying behavior of tropical ants
May 2016 – July 2016 Research volunteer at the Borror Lab of Bioacoustics, Ohio State University Museum of Biological Diversity; studying call diversity in American Chickadee species
Fieldwork Experience
June 2021 – July 2021 Data collection on behavior of desert ants for the Masters Thesis in Mahares, Tunisia
July 2018 – July 2019 Internship in butterfly insectaries at the Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute field station in Gamboa, Panama
May 2017 4-week field course on “Tropical Behavioral Ecology and Evolution” at the Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute in Gamboa, Panama