"What a wonderful world" sang Louis Armstrong in his joyful ode to the simple, yet singular, events of nature in our world. The biodiversity manifested in every imaginable way amazes the common men, and its mechanisms and origin bewilder the mind of the scientist.
After studying patterns of birds community richness across the Tropical region, my current research interests fall within the realm of studies on the evolution of social mating systems, followed by key evolutionary processes shaping biodiversity: positive interactions and sexual selection.
Pin-tailed Manakin (Ilicura militaris)

What is the evolutionary causation of social bonds among species and within individuals?

Helmeted Manakin (Antilophia galeata)
Tropical birds are excellent systems to investigate those processes. "Almost every imaginable kind of sexual ornament is here [in the Tropics] to be found.", A. R. Wallace already stated [4]. Today we know several extreme ornamentations (color, iridescence, structures) and behaviors to have evolved through sexual selection [1]. In the case of the Neotropical manakins, it seems sexual selection did not spare forces: lek mating systems are one of the most intriguing traits in birds. Although a successful strategy to most of the manakins, very few of them still seem to be "old-fashioned" and have been considered socially monogamous, such as the Helmeted Manakin (Antilophia galeata) [2,3]. However, the species does not present biparental care - an important characteristic of monogamous systems.

Is it really monogamous? Or could it have adopted a unique mating system?

These and other questions which ultimately aim to better understand evolutionary causes and processes leading to the diversification of species motivate my recent investigations.
[1] DARWIN, C. (1871). The descent of man and selection in relation to sex. – Princeton Univ. Press, reprinted 1981.
[2] MARINI, M. Â.; CAVALCANTI, R. B. 1992. Mating system of the Helmeted Manakin (Antilophia galeata) in Central Brazil. The Auk, v. 109, n. 4, p. 911-913.
[3] PRUM, R. O. (1994). Phylogenetic analysis of the evolution of alternative social behavior in the manakins (Aves: Pipridae). Evolution, v. 48, n. 5, p. 1657-1675.
[4] WALLACE, A. R. (1871). Editor Charles H. Smith's Note: An essay book review printed in the 15 March 1871 number of The Academy.

SILVA-JR, E.; KAJIKI, L. N.; DINIZ, P.; KANEGAE, M.(2021). Longevity records for some passerines of Central Brazil. Ornithology Research 29: 1-5. [link]

; MONTAÑO-CENTELLAS, F.; MANGINI, G.; COLORADO, G. J.; FANJUL, E.(2018). Ecology of mixed-species flocks of birds accross gradients in the Neotropics. Revista Brasileira de Ornitologia 26(2): 82-89. [PDF]

DORNAS, T.; AGNE, C. E.; KAJIKI, L. N.; D'ACOSTA, N; BORGES, K. (2017). Expansão da distribuição geográfica de Aegolius harrisii na região Central do Brasil: registros inéditos para estados de Goiás e Tocantins. Atualidades Ornitológicas 196: 18-22. [PDF]

KAJIKI, L. N.; CARVALHO, J. A. . Bare-throated Bellbird Procnias nudicollis in Serra do Japi, southeast Brazil. Cotinga 39: 102-103 [PDF]

KAJIKI, L. N.; TOGURA, C. M.; MICHALSKI, F. 2013. First record of Tigrisoma fasciatum (Such, 1825) (Aves: Ardeidae) in the State of Amapá, Brazil and updated species distribution in Central and South America. Biota Neotropica 13(4): 385-390. [PDF]

KAJIKI, L. N.; MACEDO, R. H. F. 2018. Preliminary data on the breeding biology of the Helmeted Manakin (Antilophia galeata): nesting site preferences. In: 27th International Ornithological Congress - Book of Abstracts (Poster presentation / Congress).

L. N.; CORRÊA, L.; SIQUEIRA, P. R.; CARVALHO, B. G. 2017. Not so stable: variation in mexed-species flocks of birds in a lowland Amazonian forest. In: Ornithological Congress of the Americas - Book of Abstracts. Puerto Iguazú: Aves Argentinas / Association of Field Ornithologists / Sociedade Brasileira de Ornitologia (Mixed-species Flocks of Birds: Ecology and Evolution Symposium/Congress).

L. N.; MEDEIROS, F. A.; PRADO, C. P. B. 2015. The implications of a new record for understanding a species' historical distribution in the State of Rio de Janeiro, Brazil: finding Anhima cornuta. In: X Neotropical Ornithological Congress & XXII Congresso Brasileiro de Ornitologia, Manaus (Citizen Science Symposium/Congress).
KAJIKI, L. N.; LEES, A. C.; MICHALSKI, F. 2014. O papel do clima no controle da biodiversidade de aves tropicais. In: XXI Congresso Brasileiro de Ornitologia, 2014, Rio de Janeiro. Livro de resumos do XXI Congresso Brasileiro de Ornitologia. RJ: Rio de Janeiro, v. 1, p. 141-141 (Oral presentation/Congresso).
KAJIKI, L. N.; LEES, A. C.; MICHALSKI, F. 2013. Efeitos da heterogeneidade do habitat em comunidades florestais de aves neotropicais: um estudo com meta-análise. (Oral presentation/Congress).

KAJIKI, L. N.; TOGURA, C. M.; OLIVEIRA, I. A. P.; MICHALSKI, F. 2013. Influence of giant otter latrines on avifaunal occurrence along amazonian rivers. In: III International Congress on Biodiversity of the Guiana Shield, 2013, Paramaribo. Abstract Book of the III International Congress on Biodiversity of the Guiana Shield. Paramaribo: The Anton de Kom University of Suriname. v. 1. p. 63-63. [PDF]

OLIVEIRA, I. A. P.; TOGURA, C. M.; KAJIKI, L. N.; CONCEIÇÃO, P. C. F.; AMADOR, J. A.; MICHALSKI, F. 2013. Seasonal variation in giant otter detections along waterways in the eastern Brazilian Amazon. In: III International Congress on Biodiversity of the Guiana Shield, 2013, Paramaribo. Abstract Book of the III International Congress on Biodiversity of the Guiana Shield. Paramaribo: The Anton de Kom University of Suriname. v. 1. p. 91-91. [PDF]

Since the early ages, I had a singular curiosity on birds. Not a conscious one: somehow, I wanted to understand their language.

A kid develops many other interests, so I have adventured myself through many paths. However, I always kept an eye on networks and natural history, especially of birds.

Today, I am an environmental consultant and PhD candidate at the University of Brasilia (BRA), under the supervision of Dr. Regina Macedo at the dynamic Lab of Animal Behavior. I am excited to dive in the incredible universe of animal behavior, and investigate the mechanisms driving the evolution of species.

I am also very interested in social networks, and the evolution of sociality; natural and anthropogenic processes driving diversity and biogeographic patterns. I am an admirer of A. R. Wallace's studies, and I am fascinated about culture - an enthusiastic violinist and cinephile.

Fieldwork in Porto Trombetas, Pará, Brazil. August 2016. Photo: Leandro Corrêa

Past and ongoing projects, training and professional adventures

V Sound Recording & Analysis Workshop - Cornell Lab, Manaus, BRA. August 2015. Photo: Macaulay Library
Visit to the HQ of the amazonian orchids expert, João B. F. da Silva. Porto Trombetas, BRA. June 2016.
I INPA Bird Banding Course. Manaus, BRA. October 2012. Photo: Francisco Carvalho Diniz
Meeting João Batista F. da Silva during fieldwork at Porto Trombetas, PA, BR. June 2016.
X Neotropical Ornithological Congress. Manaus, BRA. July 2015.
Museu de Ciências Naturais PUC Minas. Belo Horizonte, BRA. January 2016.
Vertebrate census at FLONA-Amapá, Serra do Navio, BRA. September 2012.
Scientific commitee from Amapá at the III ICBGS, Paramaribo, SR. August 2013. Photo: Dayse Ferreira
V Sound Recording and Analysis Workshop at Manaus, BRA. August 2015. Photo: Greg Budney.
Talk at AvistarRio, Parque Lage, Rio de Janeiro, BRA. October 2016. Photo: Juliana Bianquini.
Helmeted Manakin Project fieldwork at Fazenda Água Limpa, Brasília, BR. Sept 2017. Photo by Caio da Silva.
Emily DuVal's fieldwork with Chiroxiphia lanceolata. Isla Costa Brava, PAN. April 2018. Photo: Lilian Manica
I Neotropical Mixed-Species FLocks of Birds Workshop. Rio Claro, BR. March 2018.