Lauren Esposito, Assistant Curator, Schlinger Chair of Arachnology, California Academy of Sciences
Assistant Curator, Schlinger Chair of Arachnology

I study the patterns and processes of evolution in scorpions and their fascinating venoms, spiders, and whip spiders. I am particularly interested in the interactions between biota, geology, and climate that have lead to the present-day assemblage of life on Earth. I feel that by understanding the history of life on Earth, we can make better informed decisions for enabling the present-day flora and fauna to continue to adapt and evolve.

Brian Fisher, Curator
Curator of Entomology, Patterson Scholar

I study the diversity and evolution of ants. In particular, I am interested in uncovering the diversity, origin, and radiation of ants across the southwest Indian Ocean. Concerns over deforestation on Madagascar led me to deploy Malaise traps with metabarcoding to monitor 50 forest sites. We also study how edible insects can be farmed at scale to alleviate pressure on endangered habitat while supplementing local diets.

Moe Flannery, Senior Collection Manager, O&M
Senior Collections Manager, Birds and Mammals

Research Areas

Marine mammal data collection on Bay Area beaches

Co-evolution of quill mites (Syringophilidae) and their bird hosts

Birds of Southeast Asia

China Natural History Project

Ageing & sexing passerines using molt criteria

Photo of Jon Fong
Database programming, specimen photography/radiography
Ana Gaisiner
Field Associate

I am interested in the behavioral ecology of fishes, particularly in species that exhibit complex relationships with other organisms, and strong habitat dependencies. Currently I am working in the lab of Dr. Alison Gould on the genus Siphamia, a group of tiny cardinalfish that exhibit bioluminescence though symbiosis with light producing bacteria, and that rely on invertebrates such as sea urchins and corals for protection from predators.

Headshot of Christine Garcia
Research Associate, Geology

Christine is a Research Associate in Geology and previously served as Collections Manager and the EPICC (Eastern Pacific Invertebrate Communities of the Cenozoic) project manager at CAS. Her research focuses on environmental and paleoenvironmental reconstructions of marine ecosystems utilizing microfossil assemblages, and how this data can inform future predictions for these ecosystems in the face of climate change.




Senior Research Associate, Invertebrate Zoology and Geology
Invertebrate Zoology, History of Science
Jacob Gorneau, Entomology
Research Assistant and Graduate Student, Entomology

I am a research assistant and graduate student in the Entomology department. While my interests in arthropod diversity and evolution range widely, my master's research centers on leveraging museum collections to answer questions about arachnid biodiversity. Part of my master's seeks to understand the evolutionary history of the marronoid clade - a group of mostly small, brown spiders with little unifying characteristics.

Senior Curator of Invertebrate Zoology and Geology
Molluscan Evolution, Systematics and Diversification- Conservation of Marine Ecosystems



Alison Gould
Research Scientist

I study the evolutionary ecology of a bioluminescent symbiosis between coral reef fish in the genus Siphamia and luminous bacteria. My research integrates natural history and ecology with genomics to understand how this highly specialized association evolved and how host-symbiont specificity is maintained over time and space. Working with the Steinhart Aquarium, I am also developing this gut-associated symbiosis as a tractable model system to investigate the mechanisms regulating the complex relationships between animals and beneficial bacteria.