SciCafe

Ghost Snake Stories in Madagascar

May 3, 2017

Ghost Snake on ground

Join herpetologist and Museum Curator Frank Burbrink on a journey to the remote forests of Madagascar, where his team recently discovered several new species of reptiles. Hear tales of life in the field and discover how DNA analysis helps identify new species in the lab.

About the Speaker

Frank T. Burbrink

Frank T. Burbrink


Frank Burbrink examines the evolutionary history and biogeography of reptiles and amphibians across the world. This research helps understand how species are generated, what processes produce patterns of species richness, and how local communities are formed. Within this research framework, he is currently investigating population genetics, phylogeography and systematics of snakes. To collect genomic and morphological data on snakes, he has recently conducted research expeditions with his students across North America, South America, Asia and Madagascar.

Read more

  • Watch a video on this month’s SciCafe speaker.
  • Read a blog post on new research that reveals a snake found across the Eastern United States is actually three different species. 
  • An article about ice age vertebrates’ mixed responses to climate change.
  • An empirical study on comparing species tree estimation with large anchored phylogenomic and small Sanger-sequenced molecular datasets.

Frequent Geek Cards

Get your card stamped at the information table when you attend SciCafe.

  • Three stamps—get a free drink
  • Five stamps—get a free Frequent Geek T-shirt.
  • All nine stamps— and receive get two tickets to a special exhibition of your choice.
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Send Us Your Playlist!

Curate a playlist based on May's SciCafe topic, “Ghost Snake Stories in Madagascar,” for a chance to have it played at the event.

Step #1: Log-in to your Spotify account
Step #2: Follow amnhpublicprograms 
Step #3: Curate a 90-minute playlist based on monthly the month’s SciCafe theme
Step #4: Title your album playlist by month and your name (we want to be sure to give you a shout-out!)
Step #5: Share it with amnhpublicprograms

MicroCulture: A Social Card Game About the Human Microbiome

Get to know your fellow SciCafe geeks in this card-based social game that embodies the behavior of the human microbiome. Be a part of the largest culture of human microbes at the end of the evening to receive geeky giveaways.

The SciCafe series is proudly sponsored by Judy and Josh Weston.

SciCafe: Ghost Snake Stories in Madagascar, and related activities are generously supported by the Science Education Partnership Award (SEPA) program of the National Institutes of Health (NIH).