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Jason Weckstein, PhD

Jason D. Weckstein, PhD

Associate Professor, Department of Biodiversity, Earth &
Environmental Science
Associate Curator of Ornithology, ANS
Department of Biodiversity, Earth and Environmental Science
Office: Ornithology Department, ANS
Phone: 215.299.1023

Additional Sites:


  • BS, Natural Resources, University of Michigan, 1993
  • MS, Zoology, University of Minnesota, 1997
  • PhD, Zoology, Louisiana State University, 2003

Research Interests:

My current research program focuses on three main areas: 1) avian phylogenetics, comparative biology and evolutionary history, 2) biodiversity surveys of birds and their parasites and pathogens, and 3) coevolutionary history of birds and their parasites.  My research involves both active field collecting of bird and associated parasite specimens and analysis of DNA sequence data to reconstruct the evolutionary histories of birds and their parasites.  Specimens housed in natural history collections such as the Academy of Natural Sciences are a critical resource for my research program.


Jason Weckstein is an associate professor in Drexel's BEES department and associate curator in the department of Ornithology at the Academy of Natural Sciences.  Jason obtained his BS degree in Natural Resources from the University of Michigan in 1993, his MS in Zoology from the University of Minnesota and his PhD from Louisiana State University in 2003.  After obtaining his PhD Jason was a postdoctoral fellow at the Illinois Natural History Survey at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign and at the Field Museum of Natural History in Chicago, where he stayed on as a staff scientist until joining the BEES faculty.  Jason has over 17 years of experience working in natural history museums and has conducted research on birds and their parasites in the United States, Canada, South Africa, Ghana, Malawi, Nicaragua, and Brazil.  In addition to his teaching, training, and research, Jason's additional interests at the Academy of Natural Sciences include collections building, curation and public outreach.

Selected Publications:

  • Lutz, H. L., J. D. Weckstein, J. S. L. Patané, J. M. Bates, A. Aleixo. 2013. Biogeography and spatio-temporal diversification of Selenidera and Andigena toucans (Aves : Ramphastidae). Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution 69:873-883.
  • Valim, M. P. and J. D. Weckstein. 2013. A drop in the bucket of the megadiverse chewing louse genus Myrsidea (Phthiraptera, Amblycera, Menoponidae): ten new species from Amazonian Brazil.  Folia Parasitologica 60:377-400.
  • Seeholzer, G. F., B. M. Winger, M. G. Harvey, D. Caceres A., and J. D. Weckstein. 2012. A new species of barbet (Capitoninae: Capito) from the Cerros del Sira, Ucayali, Peru. Auk 129:551-559.
  • Johnson, K. P., J. D. Weckstein, S. E. Bush, and D. H. Clayton. 2011. The evolution of host specificity in dove body lice. Parasitology 138:1730-1736.
  • Johnson, K. P. and J. D. Weckstein. 2011. The Central American land bridge as an engine of diversification in new world doves. Journal of Biogeography 38:1069-1076.
  • Johnson, K. P., J. D. Weckstein, M. J. Meyer, and D. H. Clayton. 2011. There and back again: Switching between host orders by avian body lice (Ischnocera: Goniodidae). Biological Journal of the Linnean Society 102:614-625.
  • Weckstein, J. D. 2005. Molecular Phylogenetics of the Ramphastos toucans: Implications for the evolution of morphology, vocalizations, and coloration. Auk 122:1191-1209.
  • Weckstein, J. D. 2004. Biogeography explains cophylogenetic patterns in toucan chewing lice. Systematic Biology 53:154-164.