Pável Matos-Maraví, Ph.D.

I am a postdoctoral researcher based at the Institute of Entomology (Czech Academy of Sciences). My main research interests are historical biogeography and macroevolution. My recent work aims to understand the origin and evolution of diverse insect groups, including butterflies and ants, occurring in a variety of tropical habitats ranging from islands (Caribbean, the Indo-Pacific) to continental settings (the Neotropics).

There are always interesting research projects for motivated students. Do not hesitate to get in touch if you are looking for a research training in molecular biology and evolution (both lab and analytical methods), a MSc. project on tropical ant evolution, or a BSc./MSc. thesis on bird-butterfly interaction.

Short bio

I chose a research career in biology early at high school in Lima. My motivation to study tropical biodiversity began during my undergraduate studies at the most prestigious National University in Peru, San Marcos University. I participated in several projects lead by Rina Ramirez aiming to understand the systematics and biogeography of Peruvian land snails. Towards the end of my BSc studies in 2008, I was awarded a one-year scholarship to study at the University of Turku (Finland) thanks to my research experience and performance at school. I joined Niklas Wahlberg’s lab in Turku and decided to stay longer to pursue a MSc degree. My MSc thesis dealt with the systematics and historical biogeography of Neotropical butterflies, and its peer-reviewed publication has been influential. In 2012, I began my PhD studies at the University of South Bohemia (Czech Republic) under supervision of Milan Janda. I chose my PhD topic on evolution of Melanesian ants because I had already gained a broad perspective in tropical biodiversity. Along with the Ant Research Group, we revealed species diversification and biogeographical patterns in the Indo-Pacific region from the perspective of a rich and spectacular insect group, the ants. I defended my PhD thesis in 2016 and few months later I began my post-doctoral work at Alex Antonelli’s lab in Gothenburg thanks to a Marie-Curie fellowship. Our two-year project aimed at better understanding of Neotropical butterfly evolution by using phylogenomic tools and macroevolutionary statistical methods. Our results are being released to the scientific community (review, perspective and research articles ranging from systematics, species delimitation to diversification and biogeography) and to the general public (participation in outreach activities in Sweden and constant support to initiatives in Peru such as online courses and talks at the Natural History Museum in Lima).

I am currently based at the Institute of Entomology, Biology Centre CAS, where I have been appointed by the Academic Council of the Czech Academy of Sciences under the Program for the Promotion of Perspective Human Resources (PPLZ 2019-2020) and my research is being supported by the Czech Science Foundation (Junior GAČR grant 20-18566Y; 2020-2022). I study the species diversity dynamics and biogeography of ants and butterflies from the Neotropics and the Indo-Pacific regions. My work continues a long-breath aim to expand knowledge on how extant species diversity in the tropics formed and have been maintained.

Research Interests

  • Ecological and Evolutionary Genetics
  • Molecular Systematics
  • Historical Biogeography
  • Phylogenomics
  • Phylogeography

In the media

Interview by the academic news web portal Corresponsales.pe (in Spanish).