PhD (2016), Kent State University
MSc (2012), University of Manitoba
BES (2008), University of Waterloo
social communication, signaler-receiver interactions, vasopressin and oxytocin, social recognition, behavioral ecology, neuroethology
My research in the Ophir lab focuses on pouched rat olfaction. Specifically, I am looking into how these rodents search out particular scents in a ‘noisy’ environment, how they discriminate between odors, and how they might ‘hone in’ on particularly salient odors. This work expands on my previous experience investigating signaler-receiver interactions, as I have examined acoustic signals in Indian peafowl and the influence of vasopressin on vocalizations and behavior in Richardson’s ground squirrels. As I was originally trained as an ecologist, I tend to ask questions related to how different behaviors (and the neural mechanisms underlying these behaviors) influence interactions between individuals and groups in the wild.
Papers (from the lab):
Freeman AR, Ophir AG, Sheehan MJ (2020) The giant pouched rat (Cricetomys ansorgei) olfactory receptor repertoire. PLoS ONE. 15(4): e0221981
Freeman AR, Aulino EA, Caldwell HK, Ophir AG (2020) Comparison of the distribution of oxytocin and vasopressin 1a receptors in rodents reveals conserved and derived patterns of nonapeptide evolution. Journal of Neuroendocrinology. 2020;00:e12828, 1-11.
Freeman AR, Sheehan MJ, Ophir AG (2019) Anogenital distance predicts sexual odour preferences in African giant pouched rats. Animal Behaviour. 148, 123-132.
Freeman AR, Ophir AG (2018) Scent marking behavior of the Southern African giant pouched rat (Cricetomys ansorgei). Journal of Mammalogy. 99, 1430-1435.
|Alexandra (Alex) Chaves||2019-Present|
|Aumena Choudhry (Visiting High School Student)||Summer 2019|
|Emily Mao (Visiting High School Student)||2018|
|Montse Cubilla (Visiting High School Student)||2018|
|Angela presenting at ABS, 2017||Working hard at SICB 2019|
|Helen at CUP 2018||Rachel at CUP 2019|
|Beverly at CUP 2019||Sam at CUP 2019|
|Aumena (High School HSAP Student) at SICB 2020|