Dr. Sara Pinzon-Navarro

From the Neotropics to Australian seed-feeding weevils, Dr Pinzon-Navarro is working to unravel their evolutionary patterns.

Dr Sara Pinzon-Navarro: unravelling seed-feeding weevils evolutionary patterns

Dr. Pinzon-Navarro is studying the systematics and co-evolutionary patterns of the diverse Australian Acacia seed-feeding weevils.

  • 21 February 2012 | Updated 7 May 2013

Current activities

Dr Sara Pinzon-Navarro is a Postdoctoral Fellow funded by the Zimmerman Trust working with Dr Rolf Oberprieler in the Australian National Insect Collection.

Dr Pinzon-Navarro's work at CSIRO will be dedicated to understand the evolutionary patterns between seed-feeding weevils of Acacias in Australia.

She will be collecting in different regions of Australia to determine the host specificity and distribution patterns of the species.

Dr Pinzon-Navarro's work at CSIRO will be dedicated to understand the evolutionary patterns between seed-feeding weevils of Acacias in Australia.

Her research will use phylogenetics to delimit Melanterius species of potential use in the biological control of invasive Acacia species.

Morphological analysis will complement the molecular data for identifying and describing weevil species.

Background

Dr Pinzon-Navarro started her entomological research as an undergraduate student in Mexico, working on her Honours research on aquatic invertebrates as indicators of water quality.

She became passionate about weevils during her Master's thesis when she studied the importance of type of forest in the enormous diversity of weevils.

Dr Pinzon-Navarro received her PhD at Imperial College London and worked at the Natural History Museum on the evolution of seed-feeding weevils from the Neotropics.

During 2010 and 2011 she continued her research on Neotropical weevils at the Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute and visited the insect collections of Washington and Ottawa.

Academic qualifications

Dr Pinzon Navarro has been awarded a:

  • Bachelor in Biology, Universidad de las Americas-Puebla, Mexico, 2001
  • Master in Entomology, Universidad de Panama, Panama, 2004
  • Doctor in Philosophy in Molecular Systematics, Imperial College London, 2010. 

Achievements

Dr Pinzon Navarro has been the recipient of a:

  • Panamanian National Science Organisation (SNI) Award, 2011
  • SENACYT (Panama) Grant for Post-doctoral research, 2010
  • iGEM Competition-MIT, Panama Team, Bronze Medal, 2010
  • SENACYT (Panama) Scholarship for Doctoral Studies 2005–10
  • CONACYT (Mexico) Scholarship for Doctoral Studies, 2005–10
  • Alban-European Union Scholarship 2005–09.

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