- Ph.D. Entomology - The Ohio State University, Columbus, OH. 2002
- M.S. Entomology - The University of Kansas, Lawrence, KS. 1995
- B.S. Organismal Biology - University of Kansas, Lawrence, KS. 1992
Relevant Employment History
- Associate Professor, University of Florida. 2010 - present
- Assistant Professor, University of Florida. 2003 - 2010
- Post Doctoral Fellow, The American Museum of Natural History
- New York, NY. July 2002 - November 2003
Statement of Research
I am broadly interested in the evolution of insect mating systems, but am specifically interested in the use of phylogenetic reconstructions to explore the evolution of sexual communication in fireflies (Lampyridae). While my work includes the evolution of behavior (bioluminescent signals) I am also examining the evolution of the morphological structures that are associated with aspects of these mating systems. Some of my current research includes: a) elucidating the higher-level phylogenetic relationships within Lampyridae, b) incorporating fossil lampyrids into matrices with extant taxa to both place them and to study character evolution, and c) investigating the systematics and biogeography of the Caribbean firefly fauna (both fossil and extant). My lab is oriented around research in insect phylogenetic systematics (both molecular and morphological) and the study and description of morphological variation as it relates to taxonomy and systematics.
- Behavioral Ecology and Systematics of Insects
- Immature Insects
- Insect Classification
- Survey of Invertebrate Field Biology
- Techniques in Insect Systematics
Honors and Awards
- Achievement Award for Teaching in Higher Education, Florida Entomological Society. 2007
- Snodgrass Memorial Research Award, Entomological Society of America. 2003
- Theodore Roosevelt Post Doctoral Research Fellowship, American Museum of Natural History. New York, NY. 2002
- W. Fred Hink Research Award, The Ohio State University. 2002
- Presidential Fellowship, The Ohio State University. 2001
- Hennig Award, Best Student Presentation, Willi Hennig Society Annual Meeting. 2001
- Mary Ellen Clay Teaching Award, Entomology, The Ohio State University. 2001
- The General Biology Teaching Excellence Award, The Ohio State University. 1998
- Archangelsky, M., and M.A. Branham. 2001. Description of the last larval stage and pupa of Pyropyga nigricans (Coleoptera: Lampyridae), and comparison with larvae of other known Photinini genera. Canadian Entomologist 133: 1-10.
- Branham, M.A. 2003. A new technique for collecting glowworm fireflies (Lampyridae). Coleopterists Bulletin 57 (1): 114-115.
- Branham, M.A., and J.W. Wenzel. 2003. The origin of photic behavior and the evolution of sexual communication in fireflies (Coleoptera: Elateroidea). Cladistics 19 (1): 1-22.
- Branham, M.A., and J.W. Wenzel. 2001. The evolution of bioluminescence in cantharoids (Coleoptera: Elateroidea). Florida Entologist 84 (4): 565-586.
- Branham, M.A., and M. Archangelsky. 2000. Description of the last larval instar and pupa of Lucidota atra (G.A. Oliver, 1790) (Coleoptera: Lampyridae), with a discussion of abdominal segment homology across life stages. Proceedings of the Washington Entomological Society 102 (4): 869-877.
- Branham, M.A., and M.D. Greenfield. 1996. Flashing males win mate success. Nature 381: 745-746.
- DeSalle, R., M.A. Branham, P. O'Grady, and J. Gatesy. 2003. The evolution of HomC homeoboxes in the dipteran family Drosophilidae. Insect Molecular Biology 12 (4): 345-351.