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University of Florida Marine Biologist, to Deliver Lytton J. Musselman Natural History Lecture

By Noell Saunders

Gustav Paulay, a curator of marine invertebrates at the Florida Museum of Natural History at the University of Florida, will deliver the Lytton J. Musselman Natural History Lecture on April 17.

The lecture, which is entitled "Biodiversity of Coral Reefs: The Inside Story," will be presented at 7 p.m. in the Big Blue Room of the Ted Constant Convocation Center.

Paulay's appearance is part of "ODU Presents," which features multidisciplinary speakers that support the colleges' research initiatives and community outreach efforts. The "ODU Presents" series is free and open to the public; however, guests are encouraged to RSVP to (757) 683-3116 or at odu.imodules.com/GPL18.

The Lytton J. Musselman Natural History Lecture is a continuing series led by Lytton Musselman, the Mary Payne Hogan professor of botany at ODU. The series was launched with the help of a substantial gift from ODU alumni Michael and Sue Pitchford. A former student of Musselman's, Michael Pitchford is president and chief executive officer of Community Preservation and Development Corp. in Washington D.C.

Paulay's mission is to make marine biodiversity research widely accessible online and through publications.

His research interests include documenting marine biodiversity and studying the mechanisms of diversification---how species arise and how diversity builds up on local and global scales. Paulay has studied coastal invertebrates around the world, but focuses primarily on tropical reefs.

Paulay has worked with teams of taxonomists and students to document invertebrates at locations including the Red Sea, Indian Ocean, Australia, New Caledonia, Lesser Antilles, Philippines and Florida. They have photographed, preserved specimens and taken tissue samples for DNA sequencing. These efforts have built up one of the largest collections of tropical invertebrates, which has been studied by a large network of taxonomic specialists.

Paulay holds a B.S. in Biology from Yale University, and a Ph.D. in Zoology from the University of Washington.

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