Stephanie Lechki

Stephanie Lechki


I am a DPhil student supervised by Roger Benson and Erin Saupe. My research broadly investigates non-avian dinosaur evolution and ecology through three different lenses:

  1. Body size. The smallest dinosaurs are two to four magnitudes larger than the smallest extant mammal, bird, and squamate. We tested the use of an energetic model of fitness (Brown’s Energetic Definition of Fitness) to explain body size distributions in extant squamates, turtles, crocodiles, and dinosaurs.
  2. Reproductive output scaling. Modern analogues for dinosaur reproduction have traditionally been precocial, ground breeding birds. We examined reproductive scaling among extant amniote groups (mammals, birds, and reptiles) and compared their patterns to those found in dinosaurs. We also attempted to explain these patterns using the developmental mode of offspring, parity mode, relative basal metabolic rate, and relative brain mass.
  3. Basal theropod morphology and systematics. My work examines the phylogenetic positioning of Coelophysis within Coelophysoidea through increased taxonomic sampling and character sampling. I also aim to exmaine the effects of “form” (gracile and robust) and ontogeny on the placement of taxa within a variable phylogenetic group.

I am a member of St Edmund Hall.

If you would like to know more about my research or life at Oxford as an international please feel free to get in touch.