Spencer Pevsner

Academic Profile

My previous research has examined the ecology and evolutionary history of mammals, both extant and extinct, with a particular focus on comparing the locomotory ecology of marsupials and placental mammals, as well as the morphology of multituberculate mandibles. I completed my undergraduate degree at the University of Chicago while working in the Luo lab, and I completed my master's degree at the University of Bristol while working in the Rayfield lab. I have additionally worked in the collections of the Denver Museum of Nature & Science and prospected for fossils for the Canadian Fossil Discovery Centre.

Current Research

I am a palaeontologist interested in studying functional morphology and biomechanics with an eye towards overlooked taxa and anatomical elements. At the moment my research focuses on evolutionary trends in the tails of non-mammalian synapsids, and how these variable structures may have been used in locomotion.


Grossnickle DM, Brightly WH, Weaver LN, Stanchak KE, Roston RA, Pevsner SK, Stayton CT, Polly PD, Law CJ. 2022. A cautionary note on quantitative measures of phenotypic convergence. Methods in Ecology and Evolution, in review. Pevsner SK, Grossnickle DM, Luo Z-X. 2022. The functional diversity of marsupial limbs is influenced by both ecology and developmental constraint. Biological Journal of the Linnean Society. 135(3): 569-585. doi:10.1093/biolinnean/blab168. Grossnickle DM, Chen M, Wauer JGA, Pevsner SK, et al. 2020. Incomplete convergence of gliding mammal skeletons. Evolution. 74(12): 2662-2680. doi:10.1111/evo.14094

Contact information



ORCID: 0000-0002-9001-9586

Twitter: @skpevsner