Leonardo Campagna

Research Associate


Evolutionary Biology • Genomics • Speciation • Phylogeography • Neotropical Ornithology

I use genomic tools, like obtaining the DNA sequences from entire genomes of many species, to study the evolution of avian systems, generally in the early stages of speciation. I use this and similar strategies to understand the evolutionary processes that generate differences among species.

I’m particularly interested in exploring how changes in genomic DNA sequences lead to differences in the general appearance (e.g., morphology or coloration) and behavior of the incredible diversity of birds. One example is finding the genes that are responsible for the different coloration patterns among male capuchino seedeaters (genus Sporophila).

A part of my work also focuses on studying the patterns of genetic differentiation among individuals and populations across landscapes, with the objective to uncover the geological and demographic processes that contribute to genetic differentiation.


Ph.D., University of Buenos Aires

Turbek, S. P., M. Browne, A. S. Di Giacomo, C. Kopuchian, W. M. Hochachka, C. Estalles, D. A. Lijtmaer, P. L. Tubaro, L. F. Silveira, I. J. Lovette, R. J. Safran, et al. (2021). Rapid speciation via the evolution of pre-mating isolation in the Iberá Seedeater. Science 371:eabc0256.
Arrieta, R. S., L. Campagna, B. Mahler, I. Lovette, and P. E. Llambías (2021). Double-digest RAD sequencing reveals low rates of conspecific brood parasitism and no cases of quasi-parasitism in a Neotropical passerine. The Wilson Journal of Ornithology 132:733–739.
Walsh, J., L. Campagna, W. E. Feeney, J. King, and M. S. Webster (2021). Patterns of genetic divergence and demographic history shed light on island-mainland population dynamics and melanic plumage evolution in the white-winged Fairywren. Evolution. https://doi.org/https://doi.org/10.1111/evo.14185
Berv, J. S., L. Campagna, T. J. Feo, I. Castro-Astor, C. C. Ribas, R. O. Prum, and I. J. Lovette (2021). [In Press] Genomic phylogeography of the White-crowned Manakin Pseudopipra pipra (Aves: Pipridae) illuminates a continental-scale radiation out of the Andes. Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution. https://doi.org/10.1101/713081
Rabinowicz, S., N. García, T. Herwood, A. Lazar, B. Hein, E. Miller, and L. Campagna (2020). An avian dominance hierarchy at a supplemental water source in the Patagonian steppe. PLOS ONE 15:e0244299.
Hejase, H. A., A. Salman-Minkov, L. Campagna, M. J. Hubisz, I. J. Lovette, I. Gronau, and A. Siepel (2020). Genomic islands of differentiation in a rapid avian radiation have been driven by recent selective sweeps. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences 117:30554–30565.
Kopuchian, C., L. Campagna, D. A. Lijtmaer, G. S. Cabanne, N. C. García, P. D. Lavinia, P. L. Tubaro, I. Lovette, and A. S. Di Giacomo (2020). A test of the riverine barrier hypothesis in the largest subtropical river basin in the Neotropics. Molecular Ecology 29:2137–2149.
Lois, N. A., L. Campagna, U. Balza, M. J. Polito, K. Pütz, J. A. Vianna, A. Morgenthaler, E. Frere, R. Sáenz‐Samaniego, A. Raya Rey, and B. Mahler (2020). Metapopulation dynamics and foraging plasticity in a highly vagile seabird, the Southern Rockhopper Penguin. Ecology and Evolution 10:3346–3355.
Poblete, Y., G. E. Soto, L. Campagna, M. E. Ávila, C. Fernández, C. R. Flores, and A. D. Rodewald (2020). Deforestation patterns shape population structure of the Magellanic Woodpecker (Campephilus magellanicus) in southern Chile. Avian Conservation and Ecology 15:art19.
Baldassarre, D. T., L. Campagna, H. A. Thomassen, J. W. Atwell, M. Chu, L. H. Crampton, R. C. Fleischer, and C. Riehl (2019). GPS tracking and population genomics suggest itinerant breeding across drastically different habitats in the Phainopepla. The Auk 136:ukz058.
Campagna, L., K. G. McCracken, and I. J. Lovette (2019). Gradual evolution towards flightlessness in steamer ducks. Evolution 73:1916–1926.
Lavinia, P. D., A. S. Barreira, L. Campagna, P. L. Tubaro, and D. A. Lijtmaer (2019). Contrasting evolutionary histories in Neotropical birds: divergence across an environmental barrier in South America. Molecular Ecology. https://doi.org/10.1111/mec.15018
Taff, C. C., L. Campagna, and M. N. Vitousek (2019). Genome‐wide variation in DNA methylation is associated with stress resilience and plumage brightness in a wild bird. Molecular Ecology 28:3722–3737.
Cabanne, G. S., L. Campagna, N. Trujillo-Arias, K. Naoki, I. Gómez, C. Y. Miyaki, F. R. Santos, G. P. M. Dantas, A. Aleixo, S. Claramunt, A. Rocha, et al. (2019). Phylogeographic variation within the Buff-browed Foliage-gleaner (Aves: Furnariidae: Syndactyla rufosuperciliata) supports an Andean-Atlantic forests connection via the Cerrado. Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution 133:198–213.
Campagna, L., and T. D. Price (2019). Flying up the bird tree. Trends in Ecology & Evolution 34:1–2.
Campagna, L. (2018). Among Ruffs, Some “Fight-Loving Fighters” Don’t Like to Fight. Living Bird.
Aguillon, S. M., L. Campagna, R. G. Harrison, and I. J. Lovette (2018). A flicker of hope: Genomic data distinguish Northern Flicker taxa despite low levels of divergence. The Auk 135:748–766.
Thrasher, D. J., B. G. Butcher, L. Campagna, M. S. Webster, and I. J. Lovette (2018). Double-digest RAD sequencing outperforms microsatellite loci at assigning paternity and estimating relatedness: A proof of concept in a highly promiscuous bird. Molecular Ecology Resources 18:953–965.
Toews, D. P. L., J. Walsh, and L. Campagna (2018). Population Genomics of Birds: Evolutionary History and Conservation. In Population Genomics: Wildlife. Springer International Publishing, Cham.
Van Doren, B. M., L. Campagna, B. Helm, J. C. Illera, I. J. Lovette, and M. Liedvogel (2017). Correlated patterns of genetic diversity and differentiation across an avian family. Molecular Ecology 26:3982–3997.
Campagna, L., M. Repenning, L. F. Silveira, C. S. Fontana, P. L. Tubaro, and I. J. Lovette (2017). Repeated divergent selection on pigmentation genes in a rapid finch radiation. Science Advances 3:e1602404.
Kopuchian, C., L. Campagna, A. S. Di Giacomo, R. E. Wilson, P. Petracci, M. Bulgarella, J. M. Barnett, R. Matus, O. Blank, and K. G. McCracken (2016). Demographic history inferred from genome-wide data reveals two lineages of sheldgeese endemic to a glacial refugium in the southern Atlantic. Journal of Biogeography 43:1979–1989.
Taylor, S., and L. Campagna (2016). Avian supergenes. Science 351:446–447.
Calderón, L., L. Campagna, T. Wilke, H. Lormee, C. Eraud, J. C. Dunn, G. Rocha, P. Zehtindjiev, D. E. Bakaloudis, B. Metzger, J. G. Cecere, et al. (2016). Genomic evidence of demographic fluctuations and lack of genetic structure across flyways in a long distance migrant, the European turtle dove. BMC Evolutionary Biology 16:237.
Campagna, L. (2016). Supergenes: the genomic architecture of a bird with four sexes. Current Biology 26:R105–R107.
Toews, D. P. L., L. Campagna, S. A. Taylor, C. N. Balakrishnan, D. T. Baldassarre, P. E. Deane-Coe, M. G. Harvey, D. M. Hooper, D. E. Irwin, C. D. Judy, N. A. Mason, et al. (2016). Genomic approaches to understanding population divergence and speciation in birds. The Auk 133:13–30.

Don't miss a thing! Join our email list

Your Tax-deductible Gift Funds Science to Conservation to Protect Birds