Dr Pedro Braganca
Integrative taxonomy and Biogeography of African freshwater fishes
Position: SAIAB Bursaried Postdoctoral Fellow: South African Institute for Aquatic Biodiversity; Lecturer: Programa de Pós Graduação em Biodiversidade e Conservação from Universidade Federal do Maranhão, Brazil.
In a time of increased biodiversity loss and the impacts on natural environments, investigating biological diversity and evolution is one of the major goals in taxonomy and systematics. In spite of recent efforts and research, the knowledge of the diversity and distribution of African freshwater fishes is still low. However, information about freshwater fish diversity is a key element, especially in developing countries, where freshwater fish diversity is directly linked to food security, health, and is an indicator of the water quality and ecosystem health.
Dr Pedro Braganca’s research is aimed at understanding African freshwater fish diversification patterns, species diversity, distribution and biogeography, particularly of species occurring in southern Africa, a region historically considered to have a poor fish diversity and to include several widespread species. His research focuses on different families, such as the Amphillidae, Distichodontidae, Cyprinidade and the Procatopodidae, and incorporates up-to-date practices in integrative taxonomy, phylogenetics and biogeography. In particular, he is interested in approaching long-standing taxonomic problematic groups by using a combination of molecular, external morphology and osteology data. The biogeography research, on the other hand, aims at understanding temporally how the different fish groups evolved in Africa.
Dr Braganca completed his PhD at Museu Nacional/UFRJ (Federal University of Rio de Janeiro) in Brazil, which included a nine month-period at the Royal Museum for Central Africa (RMCA) in Tervuren, Belgium. This was directed at understanding the relationships within the African family Procatopodidae.
Institution and location
Universidade Federal do Rio de Janeiro, Brazil – Bachelor of Zoology
MSc. Evolutionary biology
Universidade Federal do Rio de Janeiro, Brazil – Master of Biodiversity and Evolutionary Biology at Programa de Pós Graduação em Biodiversidade e Biologia Evolutiva (PPGBBE)
Museu Nacional/Universidade Federal do Rio de Janeiro, Brazil – Doctor of Zoology at Programa de Pós Graduação em Zoologia (PPGZOO)