Dr Juan Carlos Illera

My primary research lies within ecology and evolution on island systems in a broad sense (i.e. oceanic islands and mountains).

Especially, I am interested in understanding the evolutionary history and mechanisms working in the differentiation of extant and extinct bird populations, and ascertain the biological reasons of their distributions.

However, despite my passion are birds, I acknowledge that invertebrates are really nice models to tackle these questions too. Thus, I am also collaborating with other colleagues where alpine grasshoppers are the focus of my attention. In relation to my former research line, I am also interested to investigate the ecological and evolutionary role of pathogens in island systems because of the high susceptibility of native and endemic birds to introduced pathogens.

I undertake my research mainly focused on the Macaronesian region (Azores, Madeira, Selvagens, Canary Islands and Cape Verde) and close continental areas both Iberian Peninsula and north Africa.

However, due to my stonechat dependency I am expanding my research throughout Europe and Africa as well.