Project title: Conservation genomics of Sulawesi vertebrates
Summary: The Wallacea region of Indonesia hosts an exceptionally distinctive vertebrate diversity, with endemics such as anoa, babirusa and maleo. Yet this biogeographically-complex region is emerging as a new frontier in Indonesia for agribusiness, and land-use change may have detrimental impacts on this region's large endemic forest vertebrates. To predict future population changes, I will study past population changes. The availability of range-wide georeferenced anoa, babirusa and maleo specimens in museums means that we can obtain genomic information from samples that pre-date recent changes in land-use. Using nuclear and mitochondrial (mtDNA) genome-wide levels of genetic diversity from past and present samples, I aim to (1) reconstruct the population history of these endemic species, (2) assess whether signals of population declines, detected by our previous study were induced by recent deforestation, and (3) predict genetic diversity of future population using past population demography.