Area of Interest

My research focuses on the evolutionary history of small mammals in the Old World, and in particular, the island archipelagos of Southeast Asia.  In general, I combine biodiversity inventories with molecular and morphological systematics to understand how organisms diversify and fill the environment. I am especially interested in the effects of ecological opportunity, time of colonization, and incumbency on the tempo and mode of speciation in island-dwelling lineages.  Additional details are provided on my lab web-site.  

Selected Publications

Demos, TC, AS Achmadi, TC Giarla, H Handika, Maharadatunkamsi, KC Rowe & JA Esselstyn. 2016. Local endemism and within-island diversification of shrews illustrate the importance of speciation in building Sundaland mammal diversity. Molecular Ecology. DOI:10.1111/mec.13820.

Rowe, KC, AS Achmadi & JA Esselstyn. 2016. Repeated evolution of carnivory among Indo-Australian rodents. Evolution. 70:653-665.

Esselstyn, JA, AS Achmadi, H Handika & KC Rowe. 2015. A hog-nosed shrew rat (Rodentia: Muridae) from Sulawesi Island, Indonesia. Journal of Mammalogy. 96:895-907.

Giarla, TC & JA Esselstyn. 2015. The challenges of resolving a rapid, recent radiation: empirical and simulated phylogenomics of Philippine shrews. Systematic Biology. 64:727-740.

Evans, BJ, K Zeng, JA Esselstyn, B Charlesworth & DJ Melnick. 2014. Reduced representation genome sequencing suggests low diversity on the sex chromosomes of Tonkean macaque monkeys. Molecular Biology and Evolution. 31:2425-2440.

Stanley, WT, LW Robbins, JM Malekani, SG Mbalitini, DA Migurimu, JC Mukinzi, J Hulselmans, V Prévot, E Verheyen, R Hutterer, JB Doty, BP Monroe, YJ Nakazawa, Z Braden, D Carroll, JC Kerbis Peterhans, JM Bates & JA Esselstyn. 2013. A new hero emerges: another exceptional mammalian spine and its potential adaptive significance. Biology Letters. 20130486.

Esselstyn JA, AS Achmadi & KC Rowe. 2012. Evolutionary novelty in a rat with no molars. Biology Letters. DOI: 10.1098.rsbl.2012.0574.

Esselstyn JA, BJ Evans, JL Sedlock, FAA Khan & LR Heaney. 2012. Single-locus species de- limitation: A test of the mixed Yule-coalescent model, with an empirical application to Philippine round-leaf bats. Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences. 279:3678–3686.

Esselstyn JA, SP Maher & RM Brown. 2011. Species interactions during diversification and community assembly in an island radiation of shrews. PLoS ONE. 6:e21885. DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0021885.

Esselstyn JA & CH Oliveros. 2010. Colonization of the Philippines from Taiwan: a multi-locus test of the biogeographic and phylogenetic relationships of isolated populations of shrews. Journal of Biogeography. 37:1504–1514.

Esselstyn JA, CH Oliveros, RG Moyle, AT Peterson, JA McGuire & RM Brown. 2010. Integrating phylogenetic and taxonomic evidence illuminates complex biogeographic patterns along Huxley’s modification of Wallace’s Line. Journal of Biogeography. 37:2054–2066.

Esselstyn JA & RM Brown. 2009. The role of repeated sea-level fluctuations in the generation of shrew (Soricidae: Crocidura) diversity in the Philippine Archipelago. Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution. 53:171–181.

Esselstyn JA, RM Timm & RM Brown. 2009. Do geological or climatic processes drive speciation in dynamic archipelagos? The tempo and mode of diversification in Southeast Asian shrews. Evolution. 63:2595–2610.