Cryptic species and their ecology

Internship position (12 ECTS)
Oceans and Lakes
Behind the morphological similarity of many species, a hidden genetic diversity can be found. This cryptic diversity has been well documented in the marine nematode Litoditis marina. Despite the growing knowledge about this cryptic diversity, little is known about the ecology of the different cryptic species. Differences in environmental preferences, decomposition processes, dispersal capacities and competition abilities are tested on four cryptic species (Pm I, Pm II, Pm III and Pm IV) in different experiments. Studying the interactions between different cryptic species is realised by creating populations where several cryptic species are present. To analyse these populations, genetic methods are necessary. This assignment will consist almost exclusively of molecular work (preparation for DNA extraction, DNA extractions and qPCR analysis) in which analyses are performed to discriminate the different cryptic species.
Number of students: 
academic year: 
Contact person email: 
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contact person last name: 
De Meester
Other people involved: 
Tom Moens
Reference Number: RP-46171