Understanding rapid adaptation to new environments (2018–2021)
This project aims to improve understanding of the process of rapid adaptation. Through both in situ changes and movement of individuals, populations are increasingly encountering new environments, where they risk extinction or becoming invasive. The fate of populations is determined by how rapidly they adapt to their new environmental conditions. Recent theory predicts adaptation to novel environments is fastest when selection acts on environment-specific genetic variation. This project will test this prediction using novel manipulations to uncouple selection from heritable variation across environments. Better understanding of adaptation will allow better prediction of the risks of both extinction and invasiveness of natural populations.