Katharine Prata
PhD student

Keywords: population genomics, molecular ecology, mesophotic coral ecosystems, evolutionary biology, coral reef ecology

I am a PhD student under the supervision of Cynthia Riginos at the University of Queensland and Pim Bongaerts in the Reefscape Genomics Lab at California Academy of Sciences. My PhD focuses on a locally dominant and abundant scleractinian genus Agaricia in the Southern Caribbean. Species of Agaricia are distributed across the entire depth range zooxanthellate corals can live at, thus including both shallow and mesophotic coral ecosystems. I use 3D visualiations from photogrammetry and reduced representation sequencing techniques to study spatially explicit population genomic patterns occuring over fine-scales. Notably, I am determining the effect microhabitat has on niche differentiation and bleaching response on both named species and morphologically cryptic taxa in Agaricia.

I am also employed at the University of Queensland as a Senior Research Technician where I coordinate SCUBA diving field trips and genomics lab work and I work casually as a Carpentries Programming Instructor at the Queensland Cyber Infrastructure Foundation.

I aspire to do a Post Doc and I have been very lucky in my PhD to have gained experience in many research areas including field, lab and computing. In my spare time, I enjoy admiring and fussing over my growing tropcial plant collection, hula hooping and reading or listening to philosophy!

  • PhD in Biological Sciences, The University of Queensland (current)
  • BSc (Hons.) in Zoology, Monash University, 2016