Johnny Konvalina

alligator snapperPh.D. student

Email: jkonvalina@knights.ucf.edu

Johnny grew up in Omaha, Nebraska and obtained his BS in Biology and Fisheries &Wildlife from University of Nebraska-Lincoln. As an undergraduate, he conducted a population survey of western painted turtles (Chrysemys picta bellii) using mark-recapture techniques. During undergraduate he also minored in Spanish. Following graduation, he interned at Omaha’s Henry Doorly Zoo where he worked with many animals including tapirs, monkeys, lemurs, and pygmy hippos.  He also spent a summer working at the Butterfly & Insect Pavilion where he interacted with emperor scorpions, giant centipedes, and bird-eating spiders.

Johnny received a masters in Biology at Arkansas State University where his thesis focused on spermatogenesis, sperm morphometrics and the testicular cycle of the rough greensnake (Opheodrys aestivus).  Along with his collaborators, he was able to deduce that rough greensnakes produce their sperm after mating and store it over winter to use the next spring, a process termed post-nuptial spermatogenesis.  Sperm length was not significantly correlated with body size; however sperm tail length had a strong correlation with total sperm length.

At UCF, Johnny plans to switch gears and focus on movement, habitat selection, and population genetics of the American alligator (Alligator mississippiensis).