College of Science

Mark D. Uhen, PhD

Associate Professor, Associate Chair, Atmospheric, Oceanic, and Earth Sciences

Faculty Directory

Research Focus

My research focuses on the origin and evolution of cetaceans (whales and dolphins), major evolutionary transitions in general, functional morphology, use of stratigraphic data in phylogenetic analysis, and theoretical aspects of diversification. I have published many papers in scientific journals, contributed chapters to edited books, co-authored a book on the evolution of whales, and presented at numerous scientific conferences. I am also a Research Associate at the United States National Museum of Natural History, and the Chair of the Executive Committee of the Paleobiology Database.

Current Projects

■ Marine mammal body mass evolution over the Cenozoic.

■ Latitudinal gradients in marine mammal diversity over the Cenozoic.

■ Early evolution and diversification of mysticete cetaceans.

■ Morphometrics of early cetacean hind limbs and axial skeletons.

Select Publications

■ Mauricio Peredo, C., N.D. Pyenson, M.D. Uhen, C.D. Marshall. (2020). The apparent exponential radiation of Phanerozoic land vertebrates is an artefact of spatial sampling biases. The Royal Society Publishing 287.

■ Churchill, M. and M. D. Uhen. (2019). Taxonomic implications of morphometric analysis of earless seal limb bones. Acta Palaeontologica Polonica 64(2), 213-230.

■ Godfrey, S.J., M.D. Uhen, J.E. Osborne, L.E. Edwards. (2016). A new specimen of Agorophius pygmaeus (Agorophiidae, Odontoceti, Cetacea) from the early Oligocene Ashley Formation of South Carolina, USA. Cambridge University Press, Vol. 90, 154-169.



Phone: 703-993-5264