Cristina Ottocento

I am currently a PhD student at the University of Jyväskylä. I did my BSc and MSc in Evolutionary Biology at the University of Padova, in Italy. In 2018, I applied for the Erasmus+ scholarship and I moved to the cold and snowy Central Finland, where together with Bibiana, Johanna Mappes and Emily Burdfiel-Steel I studied how the early life resource availability affects the anti-predatory defence in Wood tiger moth.

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During my Masters thesis, I fell in love with Finland and I found my way into science, so I started my PhD studies under the supervision of Bibiana, Johanna Mappes and Astrid Groot. I am interested in trying to understand what mechanisms drive speciation, in particular, if there is an ongoing divergence process between the Caucasus and European wood tiger moth populations. 

 

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Caucasus mountains, July 2018

My work is spread between behavioural ecology and chemical ecology. During fieldwork, I traverse the Caucasian mountains to find the Georgian wood tiger moth population and I often visit the University of Amsterdam to learn more about sexual chemical communication in moths. At the moment I am analysing the Caucasian and European wood tiger moth female pheromones.

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Georgian male wood tiger moth in the wild

 

Other than navigating to my life passion – curiosity, I love reading, doing handicrafts, playing the guitar and running outside.

 

PUBLICATIONS

Ottocento C, Rojas B, Burdfield-Steel E, Furlanetto M & Mappes J. Strategic resource allocation in an aposematic moth: the effects of early-life resource availability on melanin disrupted warning signal and chemical defence. In preparation.

Burdfield-Steel E, Furlanetto M, Ottocento C, Rojas B, Nokelainen O & Mappes J. Can resource allocation costs maintain honest warning signals? In preparation.

 

PRESENTATIONS IN SCIENTIFIC CONFERENCES

Ottocento C., Rojas B., Groot T. A., Hernández L., De Pasqual C., Valkonen J., Mappes J. The scent of divergence: role of chemical communication in reproductive isolation of two moth populations. European Society for Evolutionary Biology (ESEB) Meeting, Turku, Finland. August 2019  (Poster presentation)

Ottocento C., Rojas B., Burdfield-Steel E., Furlanetto M., Mappes J. Early life resource availability affects the antipredatory defences of an aposematic moth. Oikos Finland Conference for Ecologists and Evolutionary Biologists, Oulu, February, 2019  (Oral presentation)

Ottocento C., Rojas B., Burdfield-Steel E., Furlanetto M., Mappes J. Early life resource availability affects the antipredatory defences of an aposematic moth. International Society for Behavioral Ecology (ISBE) Meeting, Minneapolis, USA. August 2018 (Poster presentation)