Alexis Mychajliw

investigating the past, present, and future of island mammals. and ones with wiggly noses, too.

Hi there! I’m Alexis.

I am a 5th year PhD candidate and member of the Hadly Lab in the Department of Biology at Stanford University.

I am interested in the evolution and conservation of mammalian diversity, with an emphasis on island systems. Genomes, bones, and sediments hold clues to how species have responded to challenges in the past.  I apply a diverse methodological toolkit to understand how ecological communities have changed over the  past 25,000 years into today, and place these results in a policy context.

Current projects include understanding selective extinction dynamics of Caribbean mammals, fecal metabarcoding to elucidate solenodon diet, stable isotope ecology of native vs invasive mammals, and reconstruction of extinction drivers across Late Quaternary South America.

I am also committed to disseminating this scientific knowledge through outreach in the Dominican Republic and by teaching undergraduate courses. I strive to include local communities wherever possible at all stages of my research.

In the News

Our review on the use of paleontological data in conservation planning, written by an interdisciplinary working group led by Tony Barnosky and Liz Hadly, has been covered by news outlets including Stanford News. I talk about our work in the Dominican Republic!

Where I work, you only see two living terrestrial mammal species,” said Mychajliw, a graduate student in the laboratory of Stanford biology professor Elizabeth Hadly, who is also a co-author of the paper. “But if you dig, actually dig in the dirt, you’ll find there were once 25 species of mammals native to this area.




Our excavations in Parque Nacional Jaragua, with Siobhan Cooke, Juan Almonte, and Gerson Feliz featured in the Dominican newspaper Diario Libre. Great interview by Siobhan on the importance of understanding extinct species!






Our Nature paper as part of a North and South American working group on megafauna extinction received widespread media attention including Science News, Reuters, and IFLS Science.