Lieu: Salle de réunion en Anatomie Comparée (Jardin des Plantes, Paris); le séminaire sera retransmis par visioconférence à Brunoy.

Abstract: Invasive species provide a rare opportunity to study how organisms adapt when colonizing novel environments. This is particularly true for introductions with precise geographic and historical records, such as the cane toad (Rhinella marina) introduction to Australia. Arguably the most successful invasive anuran worldwide, the cane toad was first introduced to the Hawai’ian Islands in 1932, and subsequently to northeastern Queensland in 1935. Over the past 82 years, R. marina has spread rapidly at an accelerating pace throughout northern and eastern Australia causing massive ecological disturbances in its wake. Throughout my PhD I examined the morphological, behavioural, and physiological shifts in cane toad phenotypes that are associated with increased dispersal ability. I documented reproductive differences between invasion-front and long-colonized populations, significant variation in locomotor performance, regional changes to skeletal structure, shifts in sexual dimorphism with time since colonization, and heritability of behavioural and morphological traits. Within the span of a human lifetime, these changes have arisen via the rapid evolution of a high-dispersal phenotype during the invasion process.