David Toews

Assistant Professor of Biology

David Toews

Huck Affiliations


Publication Tags

Genomics Genome Genes Songbirds Mitochondrial Dna Color Plumage Introgression Birds Setophaga Animals Divergence Phenotype Gene Flow Pigmentation Reproductive Isolation Biogeography History Hybridization Genetic Markers Species Complex Polymorphism Mitochondria Genetics Genomic Islands

Most Recent Papers

Pigmentation Genes Show Evidence of Repeated Divergence and Multiple Bouts of Introgression in Setophaga Warblers

Marcella D. Baiz, Andrew W. Wood, Alan Brelsford, Irby J. Lovette, David P.L. Toews, 2021, Current Biology on p. 643-649.e3

Rare hybrid solves "genetic problem" of linked plumage traits

Marcella Baiz, Andrew Wood, Toews, David P. L., 2021, Ecology

Comparing divergence landscapes from reduced-representation and whole genome resequencing in the yellow-rumped warbler (Setophaga coronata) species complex

Stephanie J. Szarmach, Alan Brelsford, Christopher C. Witt, David P.L. Toews, 2021, Molecular Ecology

Extensive historical and contemporary hybridization suggests premating isolation in Vermivora warblers is not strong: A reply to Confer et al.

Toews, David P. L., Marcella Baiz, Gunnar Kramer, Irby Lovette, Henry Streby, Scott Taylor, 2021, Ecology and Evolution on p. 10720-10723

Signatures of mitonuclear coevolution in a warbler species complex

Silu Wang, Madelyn Ore, Else Mikkelsen, Julie Lee-Yaw, Toews, David P. L., Sievert Rohwer, Darren Irwin, 2021, Nature Communications

Genomic identification of intergeneric hybrids in New World wood-warblers (Aves Parulidae)

David P.L. Toews, Gunnar R. Kramer, Andrew W. Jones, Courtney L. Brennan, Benjamin E. Cloud, David E. Andersen, Irby J. Lovette, Henry Streby, 2020, Biological Journal of the Linnean Society on p. 183-191

Genomic and plumage variation in Vermivora hybrids

Marcella D. Baiz, Gunnar R. Kramer, Henry M. Streby, Scott A. Taylor, Irby J. Lovette, David P.L. Toews, 2020, Auk


David P.L. Toews, Marcella D. Baiz, 2020, Current Biology on p. R309-R311

Selection on a small genomic region underpins differentiation in multiple color traits between two warbler species

Silu Wang, Sievert Rohwer, Devin R. de Zwaan, David Toews, Irby Lovette, Jacqueline Mackenzie, Darren Irwin, 2020, Evolution Letters on p. 502-515

Genetics and evidence for balancing selection of a sex-linked colour polymorphism in a songbird

Kang Wook Kim, Benjamin C. Jackson, Hanyuan Zhang, David P.L. Toews, Scott A. Taylor, Emma I. Greig, Irby J. Lovette, Mengning M. Liu, Angus Davison, Simon C. Griffith, Kai Zeng, Terry Burke, 2019, Nature Communications on p. 1852

Most-Cited Papers

The biogeography of mitochondrial and nuclear discordance in animals

David P.L. Toews, Alan Brelsford, 2012, Molecular Ecology on p. 3907-3930

Plumage Genes and Little Else Distinguish the Genomes of Hybridizing Warblers

David P.L. Toews, Scott A. Taylor, Rachel Vallender, Alan Brelsford, Bronwyn G. Butcher, Philipp W. Messer, Irby J. Lovette, 2016, Current Biology on p. 2313-2318

Migration, mitochondria, and the yellow-rumped warbler

David P.L. Toews, Milica Mandic, Jeffrey G. Richards, Darren E. Irwin, 2014, Evolution; international journal of organic evolution on p. 241-255

The Evolution and Genetics of Carotenoid Processing in Animals

David P.L. Toews, Natalie R. Hofmeister, Scott A. Taylor, 2017, Trends in Genetics on p. 171-182

The Genetics of Seasonal Migration and Plumage Color

Kira E. Delmore, David P.L. Toews, Ryan R. Germain, Gregory L. Owens, Darren E. Irwin, 2016, Current Biology on p. 2167-2173

Genomic approaches to understanding population divergence and speciation in birds

David P.L. Toews, Leonardo Campagna, Scott A. Taylor, Christopher N. Balakrishnan, Daniel T. Baldassarre, Petra E. Deane-Coe, Michael G. Harvey, Daniel M. Hooper, Darren E. Irwin, Caroline D. Judy, Nicholas A. Mason, John E. McCormack, Kevin G. McCracken, Carl H. Oliveros, Rebecca J. Safran, Elizabeth S.C. Scordato, Katherine Faust Stryjewski, Anna Tigano, J. Albert C. Uy, Benjamin M. Winger, 2015, Auk on p. 13-30

A cryptic contact zone between divergent mitochondrial DNA lineages in southwestern North America supports past introgressive hybridization in the yellow-rumped warbler complex (Aves: Dendroica coronata)

Borja Milá, David P.L. Toews, Thomas B. Smith, Robert K. Wayne, 2011, Biological Journal of the Linnean Society on p. 696--706

Hybridization between Townsend's Dendroica townsendi and black-throated green warblers D. virens in an avian suture zone

David P.L. Toews, Alan Brelsford, Darren E. Irwin, 2011, Journal of Avian Biology on p. 434-446

A comparison of genomic islands of differentiation across three young avian species pairs

Darren E. Irwin, Borja Milá, David P.L. Toews, Alan Brelsford, Haley L. Kenyon, Alison N. Porter, Christine Grossen, Kira E. Delmore, Miguel Alcaide, Jessica H. Irwin, 2018, Molecular Ecology on p. 4839-4855

Genomic variation across the yellow-rumped warbler species complex

David P.L. Toews, Alan Brelsford, Christine Grossen, Borja Milá, Darren E. Irwin, 2016, Auk on p. 698-717

News Articles Featuring David Toews

Weird warbler reveals genetics of its mismatched colors

An incredibly rare hybrid warbler with mismatched color patterns has allowed researchers to disentangle the genetic drivers of two traits that usually come as a package deal — the black face mask and the black throat patch in blue-winged and golden-winged warblers.

Warbler coloration shaped by evolution via distinct paths

Two genes that are important for the diverse colors and patterns of warbler plumage have evolved through two very different processes, according to a new study led by Penn State researchers. These evolutionary processes could help explain the rapid evolution of these songbirds into so many unique species.

The Gene that Makes Female Birds Drab

In some finch species, the difference between colorful males and muted females comes down to one gene, BCO2, which encodes an enzyme that degrades carotenoids.

What determines a warbler's colors?

A new study has narrowed down the region of the genome that drives the black color in throat and face of warblers by studying the hybrid offspring produced when two species mate.

Bird Migration Is Written In Their Genes

A team of researchers has identified a single gene associated with migration in songbirds by combining whole genome sequencing with migration tracking technology for the first time ever

New insights into genetic basis of bird migration

Genetics of bird migration also associated with neurological disorder in humans

New insights into genetic basis of bird migration

A gene newly associated with the migratory patterns of golden-winged and blue-winged warblers could lend insight into the longstanding question of how birds migrate across such long distances.

This finch has a coat of many colors, but its head hue is the key

Gouldian finches are flashy birds. Native to Australia, they seem to wear a kaleidoscope of bright rainbow feathers. But there are three distinct color variations with individuals having a red, black or yellow head.

Varying head colors of Gouldian finches explained by unique evolutionary process

The heads of Gouldian finches feature one of three different colors: yellow, red and black. Now, scientists know why the pressures of natural selection have failed to erase the species' color variation.

Toews receives early investigator award from American Ornithological Society

​David Toews, assistant professor of biology at Penn State, has been selected as the 2019 recipient of the Ned K. Johnson Early Investigator Award by the American Ornithological Society (AOS), an international society devoted to advancing the scientific understanding of birds.