Christy Hipsley

Dr Christy Hipsley

Honorary Staff/Research Fellow, University of Melbourne

About me

Contact me
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I am an evolutionary biologist/vertebrate paleontologist who incorporates fossils and molecular phylogenetics to study deep-time patterns of faunal change.

I use squamate reptiles (lizards and snakes) as a focal group for reconstructing evolutionary dynamics of morphological transformations – profound changes in anatomy that often accompany major shifts in ecology and diversification. 3D X-ray computed tomography, or CT, is a central tool in my work, which I apply to extinct and modern specimens to describe and quantify variation in skeletal structures.  I currently focus on two clades in this regard – amphisbaenians or "worm lizards", and skinks.

I am also active in science education, having regularly contributed to museum exhibitions and outreach programs.

Qualifications

PhD, University of California, Santa Cruz, USA, 2012

MSc (with Honours), Lund University, Sweden, 2003

BSc (Cum Laude), North Carolina State University, USA, 1999

Key publications

Hipsley CA, Müller J (2017) Developmental dynamics of ecomorphological convergence in a transcontinental lizard radiation. Evolution 71: 936–948. doi:10.1111/evo.13186

Hipsley CA, Müller J (2014) Beyond fossil calibrations: realities of molecular clock practices in evolutionary biology. Frontiers in Genetics 5: 138. doi:10.3389/fgene.2014.00138

Jones MEH, Anderson CL, Hipsley CA, Müller J, Evans SE, Schoch RR (2013) Integration of molecules and new fossils supports a Triassic origin for Lepidosauria (lizards, snakes, and tuatara). BMC Evolutionary Biology 13: 208. doi:10.1186/1471-2148-13-208

Parham JF, Donoghue PCJ, Bell CJ, Calway TD, Head JJ, Holroyd PA, Inoue JG, Irmis RB, Joyce WG, Ksepka DT, Patané JSL, Smith ND, Tarver JE, van Tuinen M, Yang Z, Angielczyk KD, Greenwood J, Hipsley CA, Jacobs L, Makovicky PJ, Müller J, Smith KT, Theodor JM, Warnock RC, Benton MJ (2012) Best practices for justifying fossil calibrations. Systematic Biology 61: 346-359. doi:10.1093/sysbio/syr107

Müller J, Hipsley CA, Head JJ, Kardjilov N, Hilger A, Wuttke M, Reisz RR (2011) Eocene lizard from Germany reveals amphisbaenian origins. Nature 473: 364–367.  doi:10.1038/nature09919

Links

Projects and events

Conference organisation

Molecular Paleobiology of Australia’s Terrestrial Vertebrates (2016), Melbourne Museum

Museum exhibitions (contributed text/material)

Federflug -150 Jahre Urvogel-Fund (2011- 2012), Museum für Naturkunde Berlin

Wissenschaf(f)t Zukunft (2012), Museum für Naturkunde Berlin

Member of design team

Entwicklungen – 60 Jahre Entdeckung der DNA-Struktur (2014), Museum für Naturkunde Berlin

Co-curator

PostNatural Nature (2014), Museum für Naturkunde Berlin

Teaching and students

I'm available for student supervision.

Current students (Co-supervised, University of Melbourne)

Sakib Kazi (MSc)

Axel Newton (PhD)

http://blogs.unimelb.edu.au/hipsleylab/people/

Courses taught (Teaching Assistant/Guest Lecturer)

Paleobiology & Evolution of Vertebrates, Museum für Naturkunde Berlin

Undergraduate Research in Ecology & Evolutionary Biology, UCSC

Behavioral Ecology, UCSC

Invertebrate Zoology, UCSC

Development and Physiology (3 quarters) , UCSC

Evolution, Ecology and Evolution (2 quarters) , UCSC

Ecological Field Methods, UCSC

Human Demographics, Stanford University

Publications

Hipsley CA, Müller J (2017) Developmental dynamics of ecomorphological convergence in a transcontinental lizard radiation. Evolution 71: 936–948.

Hipsley CA, Rentinck M-N, Rӧdel M-O, Müller J (2016) Ontogenetic allometry constrains cranial shape of the head-first burrowing worm lizard Cynisca leucura (Squamata: Amphisbaenidae). Journal of Morphology 277: 1159-1167.

Zaag PT, Reimold WU, Hipsley CA, Hess K-U, Dobson KJ (2016) Micro-computed tomography and shock microdeformation studies on shatter cones. Meteoritics and Planetary Science 51: 1435-1459.

Müller J, Hipsley CA, Maisano JA (2016) Skull osteology of the Eocene amphisbaenian Spathorhynchus fossorium (Reptilia, Squamata) suggests convergent evolution of fossorial cranial adaptations in worm lizards. Journal of Anatomy 229: 615-630.

Wulff NC, Lehmann AW, Hipsley CA, Lehmann GUC (2015) Copulatory courtship by bushcricket genital titillators revealed by functional morphology, μCT scanning for 3D reconstruction and female sense structures. Arthropod Structure and Development 44: 388-397.

Miralles A, Hipsley CA, Erens J, Gehara M, Rakotoarison A, Glaw F, Müller J, Vences M (2015) Distinct patterns of desynchronized limb regression in Malagasy scincine lizards (Squamata, Scincidae). PLoS ONE 10(6): e0126074.

Hampe O, Franke H, Hipsley CA, Kardjilov N, Müller J (2015) Prenatal cranial ossification of the humpback whale, Megaptera novaeangliae. Journal of Morphology 276: 564-582.

Hipsley CA, Miles DB, Müller J (2014) Morphological disparity opposes latitudinal diversity gradient in lacertid lizards. Biology Letters 10: 20140101.

Hipsley CA, Müller J (2014) Beyond fossil calibrations: realities of molecular clock practices in evolutionary biology. Frontiers in Genetics 5: 138.

Hipsley CA, Müller J (2014) Relict endemism of extant Rhineuridae (Amphisbaenia): testing for phylogenetic niche conservatism in the fossil record. Anatomical Record 297: 473-481.

Kirchhof S, Hipsley CA, Corl A, Dell'Mour H, Müller J (2014) Pedioplanis lineocellata lineocellata (Duméril & Bibron 1839) Spotted Sand Lizard. African Herp News 61: 28-30.

Kirchhof S, Hipsley CA, Corl A, Dell'Mour H, Müller J (2014) Pedioplanis undata (A. Smith, 1838) Western Sand Lizard. African Herp News 61: 30-33.

Lancaster LT, McAdam, AG, Hipsley CA, Sinervo BR (2014) Frequency-dependent and correlational selection pressures have conflicting consequences for assortative mating in a color-polymorphic lizard, Uta stansburiana. American Naturalist 184: 188-197.

Klages J, Glaw F, Köhler J, Müller J, Hipsley CA, Vences M (2013) Molecular, morphological and osteological differentiation of a new species of miniaturized microhylid frog of the genus Stumpffia from northwestern Madagascar. Zootaxa 3717: 280-300.

Jones MEH, Anderson CL, Hipsley CA, Müller J, Evans SE, Schoch RR (2013) Integration of molecules and new fossils supports a Triassic origin for Lepidosauria (lizards, snakes, and tuatara). BMC Evolutionary Biology 13: 208.

Miralles A, Anjeriniaina M, Hipsley CA, Müller J, Glaw F, Vences M (2012) Variations on a bauplan: description of a new Malagasy “mermaid skink” with flipper-like forelimbs only (Scincidae: Sirenoscincus). Zoosystema 34: 701-719.

Sobral S, Hipsley CA, Müller J (2012) Braincase redescription of Dysalotosaurus lettowvorbecki (Dinosauria, Ornithopoda) based on computed tomography. Journal of Vertebrate Paleontology 32: 1090–1102. *Won Taylor & Francis Award for Best Student Article in Journal of Vertebrate Paleontology (1st Place)

Parham JF, Donoghue PCJ, Bell CJ, Calway TD, Head JJ, Holroyd PA, Inoue JG, Irmis RB, Joyce WG, Ksepka DT, Patané JSL, Smith ND, Tarver JE, van Tuinen M, Yang Z, Angielczyk KD, Greenwood J, Hipsley CA, Jacobs L, Makovicky PJ, Müller J, Smith KT, Theodor JM, Warnock RC, Benton MJ (2012) Best practices for justifying fossil calibrations. Systematic Biology 61: 346-359.

Müller J, Hipsley CA, Head JJ, Kardjilov N, Hilger A, Wuttke M, Reisz RR (2011) Eocene lizard from Germany reveals amphisbaenian origins. Nature 473: 364–367.

Secondi J, Bordas P, Hipsley CA, Bensch S (2011) Bilateral song convergence in a passerine hybrid zone: genetics contribute in one species only. Evolutionary Biology 38: 441-452.

Hipsley CA, Himmelman L, Metzler D, Müller J (2009) Integration of Bayesian molecular clock methods and fossil-based soft bounds reveals early Cenozoic origin of African lacertid lizards. BMC Evolutionary Biology 9: 151.

Lancaster LT, Hipsley CA, Sinervo BR (2009). Female choice for optimal combinations of multiple male display traits improves offspring survival. Behavioral Ecology 20: 993- 999.

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