Ecology and Evolution

Cover image for Vol. 4 Issue 17

Early View (Online Version of Record published before inclusion in an issue)

Editors-in-Chief: Allen Moore, University of Georgia, USA and Andrew Beckerman, University of Sheffield, UK

Impact Factor: 1.658

ISI Journal Citation Reports © Ranking: 2013: 85/140 (Ecology)

Online ISSN: 2045-7758

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  1. 1 - 31
  1. Original Research

    1. You have full text access to this OnlineOpen article
      Dispersal and spatial heterogeneity allow coexistence between enemies and protective mutualists

      Timothée Poisot, James D. Bever, Peter H. Thrall and Michael E. Hochberg

      Article first published online: 18 SEP 2014 | DOI: 10.1002/ece3.1151

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      We explore the conditions allowing protective mutualists to invade a population of enemies. Despite the frequent observance, ecological importance, and broad taxonomic range of protective mutualists in nature, there is no satisfying understanding of the conditions under which they can emerge, especially when they are derived from ancestral enemy types. Through analyses of a model in a two patches systems, and simulations on a large lattice, we show that coexistence between mutualists and enemies is possible at the regional level, highligting the need to account for meta-community proccesses in the description of symbiont communities.

    2. You have full text access to this OnlineOpen article
      Interacting effects of age, density, and weather on survival and current reproduction for a large mammal

      Emmanuelle Richard, Steven E. Simpson, Sarah A. Medill and Philip D. McLoughlin

      Article first published online: 18 SEP 2014 | DOI: 10.1002/ece3.1250

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      By tracking the fates of all 701 horses known to have lived on Sable Island, Canada, from 2009 to 2013 (where there is no predation, human interference, or interspecific competition for food), we present a detailed analysis of structured population dynamics with focus on interacting effects of intraspecific competition and weather on reproduction and survival. Our results contrast with a previous study of feral horses that suggested recently feral ungulates might be artificially selected to reproduce even when costs to survival are high. In part, this may be because of the comparably long history of feralization for Sable Island horses.

    3. You have full text access to this OnlineOpen article
      Demographic variation in the U.K. serotine bat: filling gaps in knowledge for management

      Alienor L. M. Chauvenet, Anthony M. Hutson, Graham C. Smith and James N. Aegerter

      Article first published online: 17 SEP 2014 | DOI: 10.1002/ece3.1174

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      Many U.K. and European bat species are of conservation concern and require effective management. Knowledge of bat roost quality is necessary for the successful mitigation of development. We describe temporal variation in demographic rates and quantify the pre-reproductive delay of the Serotine bat at two sites, and describe how distinct roost quality yields divergent population trajectories.

    4. You have full text access to this OnlineOpen article
      Non-serotinous woody plants behave as aerial seed bank species when a late-summer wildfire coincides with a mast year

      Edith Pounden, David F. Greene and Sean T. Michaletz

      Article first published online: 17 SEP 2014 | DOI: 10.1002/ece3.1247

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      Trees lacking obvious fire-adaptive traits like serotinous cones or vegetative resprouting are assumed to be at a dramatic disadvantage in re-colonization after fire, because dispersal from the edge is assumed to be their sole means of regeneration. We examined regeneration by Picea engelmannii after two fires, both coinciding with mast years, in Kootenay, BC. Coupling models of seed survivorship within cones and seed maturation schedules to a spatially realistic recruitment model, we show that non-serotinous species can behave as aerial seed bank species in mast years if wildfire occurs late in the seed maturation period, permitting species without obvious fire-adapted traits to occasionally establish an abundant cohort on a large part of the landscape.

    5. You have full text access to this OnlineOpen article
      Evidence of local short-distance spawning migration of tropical freshwater eels, and implications for the evolution of freshwater eel migration

      Takaomi Arai

      Article first published online: 16 SEP 2014 | DOI: 10.1002/ece3.1245

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      This study provides the first evidence that under certain conditions, freshwater eels have condition that are immediately able to spawn even in river downstream. The results suggest that, in contrast to the migrations made by the Atlantic and Japanese eels, freshwater eels originally migrated only short distances of <100 kilometers to local spawning areas adjacent to their freshwater growth habitats. Ancestral eels most likely underwent a catadromous migration from local short-distance movements in tropical coastal waters to the long-distance migrations characteristic of present-day temperate eels, which has been well established as occurring in subtropical gyres in both hemispheres.

    6. You have full text access to this OnlineOpen article
      Higher mobility of butterflies than moths connected to habitat suitability and body size in a release experiment

      Mikko Kuussaari, Matias Saarinen, Eeva-Liisa Korpela, Juha Pöyry and Terho Hyvönen

      Article first published online: 12 SEP 2014 | DOI: 10.1002/ece3.1187

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      The release experiment produced directly comparable mobility data in 18 butterfly and 9 moth species, showing that butterflies were more mobile than geometroid moths both in terms of distance moved and emigration rate. Unsuitability of the released habitat and increasing body size (wing span) were found to be the most important species traits enhancing both emigration rate and distance moved in butterflies.

    7. You have full text access to this OnlineOpen article
      European red squirrel population dynamics driven by squirrelpox at a gray squirrel invasion interface

      Julian Chantrey, Timothy D. Dale, Jonathan M. Read, Steve White, Fiona Whitfield, David Jones, Colin J. McInnes and Michael Begon

      Article first published online: 11 SEP 2014 | DOI: 10.1002/ece3.1216

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      Several monitored epidemics of squirrelpox in a UK red squirrel population were shown to cause significant declines in red squirrel densities and overall numbers. Disease dynamics were governed by locally adjacent squirrelpox cases and the presence of gray squirrels. Retrospective serology indicates ~8% of exposed red squirrels survived the epidemic.

    8. You have full text access to this OnlineOpen article
      Reliable molecular identification of nine tropical whitefly species

      Tatiana M. Ovalle, Soroush Parsa, Maria P. Hernández and Luis A. Becerra Lopez-Lavalle

      Article first published online: 11 SEP 2014 | DOI: 10.1002/ece3.1204

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      We compared morphometric traits and DNA barcodes obtained from COI sequences to validate the robustness of the COI gene for species identification and to develop a diagnostic kit for the rapid identification of whiteflies. Our results clearly indicated that the COI sequence offers a powerful diagnostics means for molecular species identification. Furthermore, our study shows that intraspecific variation in the COI sequence can easily and robustly assess population structure in different whitefly species without the need of the sequencing step. The authors believe, this research opens new opportunities for ecologist, entomologist, pest management scientist and practitioners to facilitate their field methodologies. Additionally, we are contributing with six new COI-species sequences that will help advancing our work in cassava whitefly resistance, as well as, that of tropical entomologist and ecologist researching on the characterization of predator communities feeding on whiteflies to improve integrated pest managements decisions. The fast identification of whitefly species in the tropics will also help in understanding pest dynamics under climate change constraints.

    9. You have full text access to this OnlineOpen article
      In situ tagging technique for fishes provides insight into growth and movement of invasive lionfish

      John L. Akins, James A. Morris Jr and Stephanie J. Green

      Article first published online: 10 SEP 2014 | DOI: 10.1002/ece3.1171

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      Using invasive lionfish (Pterois volitans/P. miles), we demonstrate a novel technique for applying external streamer and dart tags in situ, using SCUBA divers to capture and tag fish on the sea floor without the use of anesthetic. We tagged 161 individuals inhabiting 26 coral reef locations in the Bahamas over a period of 3 years and documented no instances of barotrauma, reduced handling and recovery time, and minimal release displacement compared with conventional ex situ tag application.

    10. You have full text access to this OnlineOpen article
      Trade-offs in seedling growth and survival within and across tropical forest microhabitats

      Faith Inman-Narahari, Rebecca Ostertag, Gregory P. Asner, Susan Cordell, Stephen P. Hubbell and Lawren Sack

      Article first published online: 9 SEP 2014 | DOI: 10.1002/ece3.1196

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      Seedling performance trade-offs in Hawaiian wet forest.

    11. You have full text access to this OnlineOpen article
      Species-specific differences in relative eye size are related to patterns of edge avoidance in an Amazonian rainforest bird community

      Cristina Martínez-Ortega, Eduardo S.A. Santos and Diego Gil

      Article first published online: 8 SEP 2014 | DOI: 10.1002/ece3.1194

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      In the Amazonian rain forest, strong differences in light conditions exist between the edge and the interior of the forest. Bird species in this areas differ in the extent to which they avoid borders and favour the interior of the forest. Here we show that birds that avoid forest edges have larger eyes for their size, and this presumably help them dwell in dim light conditions.

    12. You have full text access to this OnlineOpen article
      Estimating the spatial distribution of wintering little brown bat populations in the eastern United States

      Robin E. Russell, Karl Tinsley, Richard A. Erickson, Wayne E. Thogmartin and Jennifer Szymanski

      Article first published online: 7 SEP 2014 | DOI: 10.1002/ece3.1215

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      We estimate the spatial distribution of overwintering little brown bats in the eastern United States using Poisson regression, expert opinion, incomplete observations, and simulation models. We incorporate uncertainty in population size and model construction into our estimates.

    13. You have full text access to this OnlineOpen article
      A trait-based trade-off between growth and mortality: evidence from 15 tropical tree species using size-specific relative growth rates

      Christopher D. Philipson, Daisy H. Dent, Michael J. O'Brien, Juliette Chamagne, Dzaeman Dzulkifli, Reuben Nilus, Sam Philips, Glen Reynolds, Philippe Saner and Andy Hector

      Article first published online: 5 SEP 2014 | DOI: 10.1002/ece3.1186

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      We analysed long term growth and mortality of tropical tree seedlings using non-linear mixed effects models. We show a strong trade-off between growth and mortality independent of an interaction between species and light. This trade-off appears to be associated with wood density such that trees that have denser wood have lower diameter growth rates and lower mortality.

    14. You have full text access to this OnlineOpen article
      Time scale matters: genetic analysis does not support adaptation-by-time as the mechanism for adaptive seasonal declines in kokanee reproductive life span

      Yolanda E. Morbey, Evelyn L. Jensen and Michael A. Russello

      Article first published online: 5 SEP 2014 | DOI: 10.1002/ece3.1214

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      In Pacific salmon, seasonal declines in reproductive lifespan have been attributed to adaptation-by-time, in which divergent selection for different traits occurs among reproductively isolated temporal components of a population. However, we found no evidence of temporal genetic structure in neutral and circadian-linked loci in kokanee, despite a very strong seasonal decline in reproductive lifespan. A short temporal scales, adaptation-by-time may be less important than other mechanisms such as adaptive adjustment of reproductive effort.

    15. You have full text access to this OnlineOpen article
      Spatial patterns, ecological niches, and interspecific competition of avian brood parasites: inferring from a case study of Korea

      Jin-Won Lee, Hee-Jin Noh, Yunkyoung Lee, Young-Soo Kwon, Chang-Hoe Kim and Jeong-Chil Yoo

      Article first published online: 5 SEP 2014 | DOI: 10.1002/ece3.1209

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      The aim of this study was to identify the spatial and ecological niches of five species of avian brood parasites breeding in South Korea, from which we attempted to infer the relationship between the nature of brood parasitism and niche evolution, and whether competition between species over spatial use or host availability actually occurs.

    16. You have full text access to this OnlineOpen article
      Individual phenotypic variation reduces interaction strengths in a consumer–resource system

      Jean P. Gibert and Chad E. Brassil

      Article first published online: 5 SEP 2014 | DOI: 10.1002/ece3.1212

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      Individual phenotypic variation in the traits controlling attack rate and handling time in predators can reduce predator-prey interaction strengths and increase overall stability.

    17. You have full text access to this OnlineOpen article
      Maritime climate influence on chaparral composition and diversity in the coast range of central California

      Michael C. Vasey, V. Thomas Parker, Karen D. Holl, Michael E. Loik and Seth Hiatt

      Article first published online: 4 SEP 2014 | DOI: 10.1002/ece3.1211

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      We examined maritime climate influence, particularly the summer marine layer, on chaparral composition and diversity in the coast range of Central California. We found that enhanced moisture availability along the coast is associated with high levels of local endemism and beta diversity in coastal chaparral. By contrast, interior chaparral diversity is constrained by extreme drought during the dry season and increased winter freeze events.

    18. You have full text access to this OnlineOpen article
      Population structure and diversity of an invasive pine needle pathogen reflects anthropogenic activity

      Irene Barnes, Michael J. Wingfield, Ignazio Carbone, Thomas Kirisits and Brenda D. Wingfield

      Article first published online: 4 SEP 2014 | DOI: 10.1002/ece3.1200

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      In this study we use genetic evidence to trace the global movement of the serious pine needle blight pathogen, Dothistroma septosporum. We show that the population structure and diversity of the pathogen reflects the anthropogenic history of the introduction and establishment of plantation forestry in the Southern Hemisphere.

    19. You have full text access to this OnlineOpen article
      Landscape variability explains spatial pattern of population structure of northern pike (Esox lucius) in a large fluvial system

      Geneviève Ouellet-Cauchon, Marc Mingelbier, Frédéric Lecomte and Louis Bernatchez

      Article first published online: 3 SEP 2014 | DOI: 10.1002/ece3.1121

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      In this study, we document the landscape genetics of northern pike (Esox lucius), based on the analysis of nearly 3000 individuals from 40 sampling sites using 22 microsatellites along the Lake Ontario – St. Lawrence River system (750 km) that locally presents diverse degrees of interannual water level variation. Genetic structure over the whole study area was globally very weak but spatially variable and water masses, man-made dams and local level of interannual water level stability were positively associated to the extent of genetic differentiation. As water level variation impacts on yearly quality and localization of northern pike spawning habitats, local habitat variability caused by interannual water level variation seems to locally decrease population genetic structure by forcing fish to move over longer distances to find suitable habitat.

    20. You have full text access to this OnlineOpen article
      Genetic variation in nuclear and mitochondrial markers supports a large sex difference in lifetime reproductive skew in a lekking species

      Yvonne I. Verkuil, Cedric Juillet, David B. Lank, Fredrik Widemo and Theunis Piersma

      Article first published online: 3 SEP 2014 | DOI: 10.1002/ece3.1188

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      When male life time reproductive success is strongly skewed, as in lek-breeding birds, the neutral genetic variation in biparentally inherited genes is expected to be reduced relative to maternally inherited genes (while in theory, under random mating, nuclear variation should be higher than mitochondrial variation). We empirically confirmed this theoretical prediction in a lek-breeding shorebird, the ruff: nuclear variation is reduced by 97% compared to maternally inherited mitochondrial DNA.

    21. You have full text access to this OnlineOpen article
      Experimental evolution alters the rate and temporal pattern of population growth in Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis, a lethal fungal pathogen of amphibians

      Jamie Voyles, Leah R. Johnson, Cheryl J. Briggs, Scott D. Cashins, Ross A. Alford, Lee Berger, Lee F. Skerratt, Rick Speare and Erica Bree Rosenblum

      Article first published online: 3 SEP 2014 | DOI: 10.1002/ece3.1199

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      We used experimental evolution to investigate shifts in growth and virulence in Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis (Bd), the fungal pathogen associated with amphibian declines around the world. Our key finding is that that Bd evolves in culture and that a longer passage history is likely to lead to greater divergence from the initial state of virulence in amphibian hosts. This research helps fill a gap in understanding evolutionary shifts in a highly lethal infectious pathogen.

    22. You have full text access to this OnlineOpen article
      Life history variation in Barents Sea fish: implications for sensitivity to fishing in a changing environment

      Magnus A. Wiedmann, Raul Primicerio, Andrey Dolgov, Camilla A. M. Ottesen and Michaela Aschan

      Article first published online: 2 SEP 2014 | DOI: 10.1002/ece3.1203

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      Life history traits can be used to assess species' response to exploitation and environmental change. Focusing on the Barents Sea fish community, we show that climate change induce a borealization of fish communities in the Arctic, and show explicitly how this promotes changes in the sensitivity to fishing. Our findings should be of interest to ecologists as well as managers.

    23. You have full text access to this OnlineOpen article
      Variation in clutch size in relation to nest size in birds

      Anders P. Møller, Frank Adriaensen, Alexandr Artemyev, Jerzy Bańbura, Emilio Barba, Clotilde Biard, Jacques Blondel, Zihad Bouslama, Jean-Charles Bouvier, Jordi Camprodon, Francesco Cecere, Anne Charmantier, Motti Charter, Mariusz Cichoń, Camillo Cusimano, Dorota Czeszczewik, Virginie Demeyrier, Blandine Doligez, Claire Doutrelant, Anna Dubiec, Marcel Eens, Tapio Eeva, Bruno Faivre, Peter N. Ferns, Jukka T. Forsman, Eduardo García-Del-Rey, Aya Goldshtein, Anne E. Goodenough, Andrew G. Gosler, Iga Góźdź, Arnaud Grégoire, Lars Gustafsson, Ian R. Hartley, Philipp Heeb, Shelley A. Hinsley, Paul Isenmann, Staffan Jacob, Antero Järvinen, Rimvydas Juškaitis, Erkki Korpimäki, Indrikis Krams, Toni Laaksonen, Bernard Leclercq, Esa Lehikoinen, Olli Loukola, Arne Lundberg, Mark C. Mainwaring, Raivo Mänd, Bruno Massa, Tomasz D. Mazgajski, Santiago Merino, Cezary Mitrus, Mikko Mönkkönen, Judith Morales-Fernaz, Xavier Morin, Ruedi G. Nager, Jan-Åke Nilsson, Sven G. Nilsson, Ana C. Norte, Markku Orell, Philippe Perret, Carla S. Pimentel, Rianne Pinxten, Ilze Priedniece, Marie-Claude Quidoz, Vladimir Remeš, Heinz Richner, Hugo Robles, Seppo Rytkönen, Juan Carlos Senar, Janne T. Seppänen, Luís P. da Silva, Tore Slagsvold, Tapio Solonen, Alberto Sorace, Martyn J. Stenning, János Török, Piotr Tryjanowski, Arie J. van Noordwijk, Mikael von Numers, Wiesław Walankiewicz and Marcel M. Lambrechts

      Article first published online: 2 SEP 2014 | DOI: 10.1002/ece3.1189

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      Clutch size varies consistently with nest size among species of birds, albeit in a species-specific manner according to 121 slope estimates of the relationship between clutch size and nest size based on 17,472 clutches. The relationship between clutch size and nest size is causal as shown by three experiments. The reaction norm for clutch size variation with nest size shows an increase at small nest box sizes, but a leveling off at larger nest box sizes. These findings have implications for population studies of hole nesting birds (and other nest-building animals) because clutch size and hence parental care and reproductive output will in a species-specific manner depend on the choice of nest box size by scientists.

    24. You have full text access to this OnlineOpen article
      Abundance, diversity, and feeding behavior of coral reef butterflyfishes at Lord Howe Island

      Morgan S. Pratchett, Andrew S. Hoey, Christopher Cvitanovic, Jean-Paul A. Hobbs and Christopher J. Fulton

      Article first published online: 2 SEP 2014 | DOI: 10.1002/ece3.1208

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      This study examined correlates of abundance for coral reef butterflyfishes at Lord Howe Island, which is the world's southernmost coral reef. Contrary to expectations, there was no relationship between abundance and geographic range; The single most abundant butterflyfish was a restricted range endemic, which is also seemingly very specialised in terms of its’ diet.

    25. You have full text access to this OnlineOpen article
      Sperm mixing in the polyandrous leaf-cutting ant Acromyrmex echinatior

      Marlene Stürup, David R. Nash, William O. H. Hughes and Jacobus J. Boomsma

      Article first published online: 2 SEP 2014 | DOI: 10.1002/ece3.1176

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      We analyzed long- and short-term variation in sperm use in a multiple mated, long lived ant species, by genotyping batches of eggs, as well as worker cohorts. We found no temporal variation in either egg paternity or patriline distributions in worker cohorts, consistent with expectations if queens are to maximize the benefits of genetic diversity in the colony.

  2. Rebuttal

    1. You have full text access to this OnlineOpen article
      The role of calcium and predation on plate morph evolution in the three-spined stickleback (Gasterosteus aculeatus)

      Carl Smith, Rowena Spence, Iain Barber, Mirosław Przybylski and Robert J. Wootton

      Article first published online: 1 SEP 2014 | DOI: 10.1002/ece3.1180

  3. Original Research

    1. You have full text access to this OnlineOpen article
      Historical land-use and landscape change in southern Sweden and implications for present and future biodiversity

      Qiao-Yu Cui, Marie-José Gaillard, Geoffrey Lemdahl, Li Stenberg, Shinya Sugita and Ganna Zernova

      Article first published online: 1 SEP 2014 | DOI: 10.1002/ece3.1198

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      We studied the last three centuries of land-use history in central Småland (Southern Sweden) using historical maps, pollen records from three small bogs and models of the relationship between pollen and vegetation (the Landscape Reconstruction Algorithm, LRA). The aims of the study is to (1) evaluate the performance of the LRA for quantitative pollen-based reconstructions of past landscape and (2) discuss the impact of recent land-use changes (over the last three centuries) on changes in biodiversity (mainly landscape diversity and beetle fauna). The results indicate that the LRA is a robust modelling approach to translate pollen data into vegetation/plant cover, and that the transformation of the landscape since the 18th century strongly diminished biodiversity both at the landscape and species level.

    2. You have full text access to this OnlineOpen article
      Optimizing occupancy surveys by maximizing detection probability: application to amphibian monitoring in the Mediterranean region

      Maud Petitot, Nicolas Manceau, Philippe Geniez and Aurélien Besnard

      Article first published online: 28 AUG 2014 | DOI: 10.1002/ece3.1207

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      The aim of this study was to define an optimised survey protocol for the Mediterranean amphibian community. We demonstrated the detection probability of amphibians sharply differed between species, the survey method used and the date of the survey. These three covariates also interacted. Thus a minimum of three visits spread over the breeding season, using a combination of all three survey methods, is needed to reach a 95% detection level for all species in the Mediterranean region.

    3. You have full text access to this OnlineOpen article
      Choosing and using diversity indices: insights for ecological applications from the German Biodiversity Exploratories

      E. Kathryn Morris, Tancredi Caruso, François Buscot, Markus Fischer, Christine Hancock, Tanja S. Maier, Torsten Meiners, Caroline Müller, Elisabeth Obermaier, Daniel Prati, Stephanie A. Socher, Ilja Sonnemann, Nicole Wäschke, Tesfaye Wubet, Susanne Wurst and Matthias C. Rillig

      Article first published online: 28 AUG 2014 | DOI: 10.1002/ece3.1155

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      Biodiversity is a difficult concept to quantify, partly because of its multidimensional nature, and many simple to complex indices have been developed for this purpose. We collected data on diversity of herbaceous plants, arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi, aboveground arthropods, belowground insect larvae, and Plantago lanceolata molecular and chemical diversity in 60 temperate grasslands and calculated a variety of simple to complex diversity indices for each (S, H', D1, D2, E, BP). While these common diversity indices appeared interchangeable in simple analyses quantifying changes in diversity, when quantifying interactions between diversities the conclusions varied with the index chosen.

    4. You have full text access to this OnlineOpen article
      Elevation-dependent responses of tree mast seeding to climate change over 45 years

      Robert B. Allen, Jennifer M. Hurst, Jeanne Portier and Sarah J. Richardson

      Article first published online: 28 AUG 2014 | DOI: 10.1002/ece3.1210

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      Forty five year trends in tree seed production are tested for along an elevation gradient, in relation to temporal changes in climate, using seed count data from a southern hemisphere beech forest. We demonstrate a trend of increasing seed production, that strengthens with increasing elevation, and significant changes in four seasonal climate variables shown to strongly relate to variation in seeding. Regression coefficients for climate variables were consistent with increased seed production. The greater influence of changes in climate on seed production at higher elevations is interpreted as the result of climate driven changes in soil nutrient availability at higher elevations rather than the direct effects of climate change.

  4. Commentary

    1. You have full text access to this OnlineOpen article
      Inappropriate analysis does not reveal the ecological causes of evolution of stickleback armour: a critique of Spence et al. 2013

      Andrew D. C. MacColl and Beth Aucott

      Article first published online: 14 AUG 2014 | DOI: 10.1002/ece3.1179

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      In a recent paper Spence et al. sought to identify the ecological causes of morphological evolution in three-spined sticklebacks Gasterosteus aculeatus, by examining phenotypic and environmental variation between populations on the island of North Uist, Scotland. However, by using simple qualitative assessments of phenotype and inappropriate measures of environmental variation Spence et al. have come to a conclusion that is diametrically opposite to that which we have arrived at in studying the same populations.

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