Dr. Eric N. Smith


Assistant Professor of Biology
MAJOR AREA: Systematics, Biogeography, Herpetology
OFFICE: 444 Life Science and ARDRC
PHONE: 817-272-3616
LAB: 446 Life Science
FAX: 817-272-2588

Ph.D. University of Texas at Arlington

I am currently working on several large, long-term projects. These projects include a substantial monographic review of the lizards of the Sceloporus formosus Group, encompassing species descriptions, phylogeny, and biogeography. Another large-scale research project currently entering publication stage investigates the phylogenetic relationships of American coral snakes (Elapidae) based on mitochondrial and nuclear DNA data (about 250 OTU's). This project will be published as three taxonomic revisions comprising specific clades in North and Central America, and a major systematic paper covering the whole group, including related Old World taxa. In cooperation with Andrew Crawford (Smithsonian Institution), we are trying to resolve the relationships among Mexican and Central American frogs of the subgenus Craugastor (Eleutherodactylus) using mitochondrial and nuclear DNA sequence data. We have now done some progress on the major relationships and also some of the species level taxonomy. While working in Sumatra and Java in 1996, I collected, photographed, and obtained tissue samples for many species of Rhacophoridae and Ranidae stream-breeding frogs (some undescribed), both in larval and adult form. Using molecular techniques I will match larvae with adult frogs and then describe the larvae of these poorly known taxa. Additionally, I am working towards completing descriptions of several new species of reptiles and amphibians from Latin America and Southeast Asia.