Prof John Endler

STAFF PROFILE

Position

Alfred Deakin Professor

Faculty

Faculty of Sci Eng & Built Env

Department

School of Life & Env. Sciences

Campus

Geelong Waurn Ponds Campus

Qualifications

Doctor of Philosophy, University of Edinburgh, 1973

Contact

john.endler@deakin.edu.au
+61 3 522 71313

Research interests

The interaction between sensory systems, signals, and the environment, and using these interactions to predict the direction of evolution under known environmental conditions.

My three main projects involve Bowerbirds, Guppies and Bearded Dragons and involve a mixture of field work, field experiments, lab experiments, and modelling.

I am always happy to have PhD students with similar interests, but they do not have to work with one of these three systems.  I've also had students working with various kinds of insects and spiders.

Here is a little more detail on my three main projects:

Signal design and its relationship to the environment and geometry in Bowerbirds.  Just how does the complex geometry and resulting multiple visual tricks and illusions created by great bowerbirds effect mating success and how and why do they repair problems in their bower geometry so quickly?  What insights can these birds and their bowers give us about how animals perceive the world and act upon sensory information--true or misleading?

Experimental evolution under known changed conditions in laboratory mesocosms (very large tanks) and wild guppy populations.   How do changed visual environments (mimicking changes in the forest canopy as a result of climate change) affect visibility of mates to females hence the direction of evolution of male displays, and how does this affect the evolution of female mating preferences and the visual system.   How does artificial selection for chasing particular colours affect female preferences, male traits and the visual system?  What are the effects in the field of canopy thinning on wild guppy populations?  Multiple minor projects resulting from these main questions.

The interaction between colour change, visual functions (within-species signalling and anti-predation), thermal balance, and environmental conditions in Bearded Dragon lizards.  Given that bearded dragons change colour in response to environmental cues as well as in response to other individuals how do they trade off the resulting changes in heat balance and visibility to potential mates, territory intruders, and potential predators?  How does this vary geographically?

Units taught

current: Evolutionary Ecology (SLE372)

Knowledge areas

Evolutionary Ecology, Evolutionary Biology, Sensory Ecology, Behavioural Ecology.  The interaction between sensory systems, signals, the environment, and how this can be used to predict the direction of evolution.

Expertise

Evolutionary Ecology, Sensory Ecology (particularly Visual Ecology), Evolutionary Biology, Behavioral Ecology, mathematical and computer modelling within these subjects. I know and enjoy programming in MATLAB, PASCAL, occasionally in FORTRAN and I'm actively learning R.
  • Behaviour
  • Biology
  • Computers
  • Ecology

Professional activities

I do science whenever I can and however I can!  Science for it's own sake, formally (e.g. international meetings and collaborations) and informally (discussions, natural history).

Research groups

Centre for Integrative Ecology

Sensory Ecology and Behaviour (within the School of Life & Environmental Sciences)

Awards

Fellow, Australian Academy of Sciences

Fellow, American Academy of Arts and Sciences

Exemplar, Animal Behaviour Society (their highest honour to a non-retired scientist).

Alfred Deakin Professor (Deakin University's highest academic honour).

Publications

Filter by

2017

Convergent evolution of sexual deception via chromatic and achromatic contrast rather than colour mimicry

A Gaskett, J Endler, R Phillips

(2017), Vol. 31, pp. 205-227, Evolutionary ecology, Berlin, Germany, C1

journal

Sexual selection predicts brain structure in dragon lizards

D Hoops, J Ullmann, A Janke, M Vidal-Garcia, T Stait-Gardner, Y Dwihapsari, T Merkling, W Price, J Endler, M Whiting, J Keogh

(2017), Vol. 30, pp. 244-256, Journal of evolutionary biology, Chichester, Eng., C1

journal

Intraspecific geographic variation in rod and cone visual pigment sensitivity of a parrot, Platycercus elegans

B Knott, M Berg, R Ribot, J Endler, A Bennett

(2017), Vol. 7, pp. 1-8, Scientific reports, London, Eng., C1

journal

How do great bowerbirds construct perspective illusions?

L Kelley, J Endler

(2017), Vol. 4, pp. 1-10, Royal society open science, London, Eng., C1

journal

Neutral and selective drivers of colour evolution in a widespread Australian passerine

H Morales, A Pavlova, P Sunnucks, R Major, N Amos, L Joseph, B Wang, A Lemmon, J Endler, K Delhey

(2017), Vol. 44, pp. 522-536, Journal of biogeography, London, Eng., C1

journal

Geographic divergence and colour change in response to visual backgrounds and illumination intensity in bearded dragons

V Cadena, K Smith, J Endler, D Stuart-Fox

(2017), Vol. 220, pp. 1048-1055, Journal of experimental biology, Cambridge, Eng., C1

journal

Experimental evidence suggests that specular reflectance and glossy appearance help amplify warning signals

S Waldron, J Endler, J Valkonen, A Honma, S Dobler, J Mappes

(2017), Vol. 7, pp. 1-10, Scientific reports, London, Eng., C1

journal

Deimatism: a neglected component of antipredator defence

K Umbers, S De Bona, T White, J Lehtonen, J Mappes, J Endler

(2017), Vol. 13, pp. 1-5, Biology letters, London, Eng., C1

journal

The current and future state of animal coloration research

J Endler, J Mappes

(2017), Vol. 372, pp. 1-8, Philosophical transactions of the Royal Society B: biological sciences, London, Eng., C1

journal

Early social experience shapes female mate choice in guppies

A Macario, D Croft, J Endler, S Darden

(2017), Vol. 28, pp. 833-843, Behavioral ecology, Oxford, England, C1

journal

Improved color constancy in honey bees enabled by parallel visual projections from dorsal ocelli

J Garcia, Y-S Hung, A Greentree, M Rosa, J Endler, A Dyer

(2017), Vol. 114, pp. 7713-7718, Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America, Washington, D.C., C1

journal

Tool-assisted rhythmic drumming in palm cockatoos shares key elements of human instrumental music

R Heinsohn, C Zdenek, R Cunningham, J Endler, N Langmore

(2017), Vol. 3, pp. 1-6, Science advances, Washington, D.C., C1

journal

Niche construction, sources of selection and trait coevolution

K Laland, J Odling-Smee, J Endler

(2017), Vol. 7, pp. 1-9, Interface Focus, London, Eng., C1

journal
2016

A comparative study of rhodopsin function in the great bowerbird (Ptilonorhynchus nuchalis): spectral tuning and light-activated kinetics

I van Hazel, S Dungan, F Hauser, J Morrow, J Endler, B Chang

(2016), Vol. 25, pp. 1308-1318, Protein science, Hoboken, N.J., C1

journal

Colour change on different body regions provides thermal and signalling advantages in bearded dragon lizards

K Smith, V Cadena, J Endler, W Porter, M Kearney, D Stuart-Fox

(2016), Vol. 283, pp. 1-9, Proceedings of the Royal Society B: biological sciences, London, Eng., C1

journal

Male courtship decisions are influenced by light environment and female receptivity.

G Cole, J Endler

(2016), Vol. 283, pp. 1-9, Proceedings of the Royal Society B: biological sciences, London, Eng., C1

journal

Color change for Thermoregulation versus camouflage in free-ranging lizards

K Smith, V Cadena, J Endler, M Kearney, W Porter, D Stuart-Fox

(2016), Vol. 188, pp. 668-678, American naturalist, Chicago, Ill., C1

journal
2015

Illusions vary because of the types of decorations at bowers, not male skill at arranging them, in great bowerbirds

N Doerr, J Endler

(2015), Vol. 99, pp. 73-82, Animal behaviour, Amsterdam, The Netherlands, C1

journal

Variable environmental effects on a multicomponent sexually selected trait

G Cole, J Endler

(2015), Vol. 185, pp. 452-468, American Naturalist, Chicago, Ill., C1

journal

Artificial selection for food colour preferences

G Cole, J Endler

(2015), Vol. 282, pp. 1-9, Proceedings of the royal society of London: biological sciences, London, Eng., C1

journal

White sharks exploit the sun during predatory approaches

C Huveneers, D Holman, R Robbins, A Fox, J Endler, A Taylor

(2015), Vol. 185, pp. 562-570, American Naturalist, Chicago, Ill., C1

journal

The bright incubate at night: sexual dichromatism and adaptive incubation division in an open-nesting shorebird

K Ekanayake, M Weston, D Nimmo, G Maguire, J Endler, C Küpper

(2015), Vol. 282, pp. 1-8, Proceedings of the royal society of London: biological sciences, London, Eng., C1

journal

An integrative framework for the appraisal of coloration in nature

D Kemp, M Herberstein, L Fleishman, J Endler, A Bennett, A Dyer, N Hart, J Marshall, M Whiting

(2015), Vol. 185, pp. 705-724, American naturalist, Chicago, Ill., C1

journal
2014

Visual effects in great bowerbird sexual displays and their implications for signal design

J Endler, J Gaburro, L Kelley

(2014), Vol. 281, pp. 1-10, Proceedings of The Royal Society B, London, Eng., C1

journal

Red-green-blue electrogenerated chemiluminescence utilizing a digital camera as detector

E Doeven, G Barbante, E Kerr, C Hogan, J Endler, P Francis

(2014), Vol. 86, pp. 2727-2732, Analytical chemistry, Washington, D.C., C1

journal

Paradox lost: variable colour-pattern geometry is associated with differences in movement in aposematic frogs

B Rojas, J Devillechabrolle, J Endler

(2014), Vol. 10, pp. 1-5, Biology letters, London, England, C1

journal

Male sexual behaviour and ethanol consumption from an evolutionary perspective: a comment on "Sexual deprivation increases ethanol intake in Drosophila"

P Guevara-Fiore, J Endler

(2014), Vol. 8, pp. 234-236, Fly, Abingdon, Eng., C1-1

journal
2013

Sexual dimorphism and intra-populational colour pattern variation in the aposematic frog Dendrobates tinctorius

B Rojas, J Endler

(2013), Vol. 27, pp. 739-753, Evolutionary ecology, Berlin, Germany, C1

journal

How can ten fingers shape a pot? Evidence for equivalent function in culturally distinct motor skills

E Gandon, R Bootsma, J Endler, L Grosman

(2013), Vol. 8, pp. 1-9, PLoS ONE, San Francisco, Calif., C1

journal

Functional characterization of spectral tuning mechanisms in the great bowerbird short-wavelength sensitive visual pigment (SWS1), and the origins of UV/violet vision in passerines and parrots

H Van, A Sabouhanian, L Day, J Endler, B Chang

(2013), Vol. 13, pp. 1-13, BMC evolutionary biology, London, England, C1

journal
2012

A framework for analysing colour pattern geometry : adjacent colours

J Endler

(2012), Vol. 107, pp. 233-253, Biological journal of the Linnean Society, Oxford, England, C1

journal

How the ladybird got its spots : effects of resource limitation on the honesty of aposematic signals

J Blount, H Rowland, F Drijfhout, J Endler, R Inger, J Sloggett, G Hurst, D Hodgson, M Speed

(2012), Vol. 26, pp. 334-342, Functional ecology, Oxford, England, C1

journal

Male spotted bowerbirds propagate fruit for use in their sexual display

J Madden, C Dingle, J Isden, J Sparfeld, A Goldizen, J Endler

(2012), Vol. 22, Current biology, Cambridge, Mass., C1

journal

Illusions promote mating success in great bowerbirds

L Kelley, J Endler

(2012), Vol. 335, pp. 335-338, Science, Washington, D. C., C1

journal

Sex as moderator of early life experience : interaction between rearing environment and sexual experience in male guppies

P Guevara-Fiore, P Svensson, J Endler

(2012), Vol. 84, pp. 1023-1029, Animal behaviour, London, England, C1

journal

Learned vocal variation is associated with abrupt cryptic genetic change in a parrot species complex

R Ribot, K Buchanan, J Endler, L Joseph, A Bennett, M Berg

(2012), Vol. 7, pp. 1-9, PLoS One, San Francisco, Calif., C1

journal

Male great bowerbirds create forced perspective illusions with consistently different individual quality

L Kelley, J Endler

(2012), Vol. 109, pp. 20980-20985, Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America, Washington, D.C., C1

journal
2011

Geographic variation in allometry in the guppy (Poecilia reticulata)

C Egset, G Bolstad, G Rosenqvist, J Endler, C Pélabon

(2011), Vol. 24, pp. 2631-2638, Journal of evolutionary biology, Oxford, U. K., C1

journal

Integrative commentary on ecology and evolution of poeciliid fishes

J Endler

(2011), pp. 301-310, Ecology and evolution of poeciliid fishes, Chicago, Ill., B1

chapter
2010

Great bowerbirds create theaters with forced perspective when seen by their audience

J Endler, L Endler, N Doerr

(2010), Vol. 20, pp. 1679-1684, Current biology, Cambridge, Mass., C1

journal
2009

The spatial pattern of natural selection when selection depends upon experience

J Endler, B Rojas

(2009), Vol. 173, pp. 62-78, American naturalist, Chicago, Ill., C1-1

journal

Predicting the direction of ornament evolution in Trinidadian guppies (Poecilia reticulata)

D Kemp, D Reznick, G Grether, J Endler

(2009), Vol. 276, pp. 4335-4343, Proceedings of the Royal Society B : biological sciences, London, England, C1-1

journal
2007

The adaptive significance of ontogenetic colour change in a tropical python

D Wilson, R Heinsohn, J Endler

(2007), Vol. 3, pp. 40-43, Biology letters, London, England, C1-1

journal
2006

Disruptive and cryptic coloration

J Endler

(2006), Vol. 273, pp. 2425-2426, Proceedings of the Royal Society B: biological sciences, London, England, C1-1

journal

Ornament colour selection, visual contrast and the shape of colour preference functions in great bowerbirds, Chlamydera nuchalis

J Endler, L Day

(2006), Vol. 72, pp. 1405-1416, Animal behaviour, London, England, C1-1

journal
2005

Comparing entire colour patterns as birds see them

J Endler, J Mielke

(2005), Vol. 86, pp. 405-431, Biological journal of the linnean society, Oxford, England, C1-1

journal

Animal visual systems and the evolution of color patterns; sensory processing illuminates signal evolution

J Endler, D Westcott, J Madden, T Robson

(2005), Vol. 59, pp. 1795-1818, Evolution : international journal of organic evolution, Oxford, England, C1-1

journal

Extreme reversed sexual dichromatism in a bird without sex role reversal

R Heinsohn, S Legge, J Endler

(2005), Vol. 309, pp. 617-619, Science, Washington, DC, C1-1

journal

The complex business of survival by aposematism

J Mappes, N Marples, J Endler

(2005), Vol. 20, pp. 598-603, Trends in ecology and evolution, London, England, C1-1

journal
2004

Predator mixes and the conspicuousness of aposematic signals

J Endler, J Mappes

(2004), Vol. 163, pp. 532-547, American naturalist, Chicago, Ill., C1-1

journal

Morphological signals of sex and status in spotted bowerbirds

J Madden, J Endler, F Jury

(2004), Vol. 104, pp. 21-30, Emu, Melbourne, Vic., C1-1

journal

Modification of the visual background increases the conspicuousness of golden-collared manakin displays

J Uy, J Endler

(2004), Vol. 15, pp. 1003-1010, Behavioral ecology, Cary, N.C., C1-1

journal
2003

Environmental variation and the maintenance of polymorphism : the effect of ambient light spectrum on mating behaviour and sexual selection in guppies

S Gamble, A Lindholm, J Endler, R Brooks

(2003), Vol. 6, pp. 463-472, Ecology letters, Oxford, England, C1-1

journal
2001

Carotenoid scarcity, synthetic pteridine pigments and the evolution of sexual coloration in guppies (Poecilia reticulata)

G Grether, J Hudon, J Endler

(2001), Vol. 268, pp. 1245-1253, Royal Society of London : proceedings B : biological sciences, London, Eng., C1-1

journal

Variation in response to artificial selection for light sensitivity in guppies (Poecilia reticulata)

J Endler, A Basolo, S Glowacki, J Zerr

(2001), Vol. 158, pp. 36-48, American naturalist, Chicago, Ill., C1-1

journal

Female guppies agree to differ: phenotypic and genetic variation in mate-choice behavior and the consequences for sexual selection

R Brooks, J Endler

(2001), Vol. 55, pp. 1644-1655, Evolution, Chichester, Eng., C1-1

journal

Direct and indirect sexual selection and quantitative genetics of male traits in guppies (Poecilia reticulata)

R Brooks, J Endler

(2001), Vol. 55, pp. 1002-1015, Evolution, Chichester, Eng., C1-1

journal
2000

Some comments on visual perception and the use of video playback in animal behavior studies

L Fleishman, J Endler

(2000), Vol. 3, pp. 15-27, Acta Ethologica, Berlin, Germany, C1-1

journal

Considerations on the use of video playbacks as visual stimuli: the Lisbon workshop consensus

R Oliveira, G Rosenthal, I Schlupp, P McGregor, I Cuthill, J Endler, L Fleishman, J Zeil, E Barata, F Burford, D Gonçalves, M Haley, S Jakobsson, M Jennions, K Körner, L Lindström, T Peake, A Pilastro, D Pope, S Roberts, C Rowe, J Smith, J Waas

(2000), Vol. 3, pp. 61-65, Acta ethologica, Berlin, Germany, C1

journal
1998

Sensory ecology, receiver biases and sexual selection

J Endler, A Basolo

(1998), Vol. 13, pp. 415-420, Trends in ecology and evolution, Amsterdam, The Netherlands, C1-1

journal

Colour perception and the use of video playback experiments in animal behaviour

L Fleishman, W McClintock, R D'Eath, D Brainard, J Endler

(1998), Vol. 56, pp. 1035-1040, Animal behaviour, Amsterdam, The Netherlands, C1-1

journal

The relative success of some methods for measuring and describing the shape of complex objects

T McLellan, J Endler

(1998), Vol. 47, pp. 264-281, Systematic biology, Oxford, Eng., C1-1

journal
1995

Multiple-trait coevolution and environmental gradients in guppies

J Endler

(1995), Vol. 10, pp. 22-29, Trends in ecology & evolution, Cambridge, Mass., C1-1

journal

Geographic variation in female preferences for male traits in Poecilia reticulata

J Endler, A Houde

(1995), Vol. 49, pp. 456-468, Evolution, Chichester, Eng., C1-1

journal
1994

Long-term studies of tropical stream fish communities: the use of field notes and museum collections to reconstruct communities of the past

D Reznick, R Baxter, J Endler

(1994), Vol. 34, pp. 452-462, Integrative and Comparative Biology, Oxford, Eng., C1-1

journal
1993

The color of light in forests and its implications

J Endler

(1993), Vol. 63, pp. 1-27, Ecological monographs, Hoboken, N.J., C1-1

journal

Some general comments on the evolution and design of animal communication systems

J Endler

(1993), Vol. 340, pp. 215-225, Philosophical transactions of the Royal Society B: biological sciences, London, Eng., C1-1

journal

Funded Projects at Deakin

Australian Competitive Grants

Testing evolutionary predictions about multiple unrelated traits under changed environmental conditions using visual ecology

Prof John Endler

ARC - Discovery Projects

  • 2013: $142,404
  • 2012: $137,128
  • 2011: $132,048

The adaptive significance of visible and infrared colour change

Dr Devi Stuart-Fox, Prof John Endler

ARC - Discovery Projects

  • 2014: $10,000
  • 2013: $10,000
  • 2012: $5,000

Experimental evolution of trait interactions under changed environments

Prof John Endler

ARC - Discovery Projects

  • 2017: $158,872
  • 2016: $178,678
  • 2015: $183,224

How different is different: highly contrasting colours in animal patterns

Dr Karen Cheney, Prof Justin Marshall, Prof John Endler, Prof Daniel Osorio

ARC - Discovery Projects

  • 2017: $20,000
  • 2016: $20,000
  • 2015: $20,000

Industry and Other Funding

Requirements for mating success in Great Bowerbirds

Prof John Endler, Ms Aida Izabela Rodrigues Repolho

  • 2015: $5,000

Bowerbird sexual peccadillos: The role of great bowerbirds on savannah vegetation dynamics.

Prof John Endler, Miss Jessica Hodgson

  • 2016: $6,000
  • 2015: $6,000

The unexplored consequences of great bowerbird sexual displays on savannah vegetation dynamics.

Prof John Endler, Miss Jessica Hodgson

  • 2016: $3,000

Other Funding Sources

Sexual selection and community interactions of Great Bowerbirds

Prof John Endler, Miss Jessica Hodgson

  • 2017: $900

Supervisions

Principal Supervisor
2017

Aditya Vivek Ponkshe

Thesis entitled: Joint effects of selective mating and ecology on the persistence of polymorphism and the divergence of sexually selected traits

Doctor of Philosophy (Life & Env), School of Life and Environmental Sciences

2015

Gemma Cole

Thesis entitled: Estimatig the evolutionary link between food detection and mate choice

Doctor of Philosophy (Life & Env), School of Life and Environmental Sciences

2012

Bibiana Andrea Rojas Zuluaga

Thesis entitled: The apparent paradox of colour variation in aposematic poison frogs

Doctor of Philosophy (Life & Env), School of Life and Environmental Sciences