(1) Leung, B., & Forbes, M. R. (1997). Modelling fluctuating asymmetry in relation to stress and fitness. Oikos, 397-405.
(2) Klingenberg, C. P. (2015). Analyzing fluctuating asymmetry with geometric morphometrics: concepts, methods, and applications. Symmetry, 7(2), 843-934.
Klingenberg, C. P., & Monteiro, L. R. (2005). Distances and directions in multidimensional shape spaces: implications for morphometric applications. Systematic Biology, 54(4), 678-688.
Klingenberg, C. P (2011). MorphoJ: an integrated software package for geometric morphometrics. Molecular ecology resources, 11(2), 353-357.
Madison Bradley will be measuring fluctuating asymmetry in the mandibles of the foxes from Dr. Ester Unnsteinsdóttir's dataset at the Icelandic Institute of Natural history. Fluctuating asymmetry (i.e. asymmetry in the body that has no left or right bias) (1) can be an indicator that there is an environmental stressor--such as pollutant exposure--that is disrupting an animal's development. We can measure fluctuating asymmetry in 'pairwise elements' within the body, like two hands, or two wings, or two halves of a mandible. If an entire population of individuals is randomly asymmetrical (without a directional bias for either left or right asymmetry), it can be an indicator of some larger problem that is powerful enough to cause a population-wide disruption in development (2).