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My research focuses on how the interactions of mitochondrial and nuclear genes shape the evolution of eukaryotes.  I am particularly interested in the role of mitonuclear interactions in the processes of sexual selection and speciation.  For many years, carotenoid coloration has been a focused interest in my lab group, and we are currently studying the connections between the female mate choice, carotenoid metabolism, cellular respiration, and mitonuclear compatibility.

My focal interest is the evolution of ornamental traits in animals. My attempts to explain colorful feathers in birds have guided me to studies of mate choice, carotenoid biochemistry, cell biology, mitonuclear genomic interactions, free radical biology, and, most recently, speciation.

Skills and Expertise:

  • Phylogenetics
  • Evolution
  • Ecology and Evolution
  • Behavioral Ecology
  • Species Diversity
  • Animal Ecology
  • Molecular Evolution
  • Natural History
  • Population Ecology
  • Phylogeography and Phylogenetic Biogeography.


  • Coloration & Color Genetics
  • Sexual Selection Theory
  • Speciation Theory
  • Individual Condition
  • Conservation
  • Ivory-bills
  • AU MitoMobile

Trained as an evolutionary and behavioral ecologist, Geoff leads an integrative research program investigating the function and evolution of animal ornamentation.

His current research interest is the co-adaptation and co-evolution of mitonuclear elements within eukaryotes.

The Hill lab has a growing interest in the performance of mitochondria.

Biological Science
PhD, University of Michigan, Biology, 1991
MS, University of New Mexico, Biology, 1986
BS, Indiana University Bloomington, Biology, 1983
biological sciences