• Issue
    Volume 8, Issue 24
    12283-13050
    December 2018

ISSUE INFORMATION

Open Access

Issue Information

  • Pages: 12283-12285
  • First Published: 28 December 2018

ACADEMIC PRACTICE IN ECOLOGY AND EVOLUTION

Open Access

A practical introduction to microbial molecular ecology through the use of isolation chips

  • Pages: 12286-12298
  • First Published: 11 December 2018
Description unavailable

We explored a practical introduction to molecular microbial ecology through field work and laboratory experiments for third-year students in a 4-year undergraduate Masters program. Students isolated DNA from complex microbial communities and applied richness / diversity indices as well as principal coordinates analyses to interpret the 16S rRNA data they obtained from high-throughput sequencing. These activities provided a good practical introduction to the theories and practice of molecular ecology and were easy to deploy in a cost-effective manner to groups of six or more students.

ORIGINAL RESEARCH

Open Access

Ontogenetic trajectories of body coloration reveal its function as a multicomponent nonsenescent signal

  • Pages: 12299-12307
  • First Published: 07 December 2018
Description unavailable

Body color is a complex trait due to sexual, regional, and developmental variation. Identifying its function is challenging because one has to account jointly for these sources of variation. Using a lifelong census of color measurement of a cohort of lizards, we show that color develops differently between sexes and body area and is maintained at older ages. Hence, body color conveys multiple signals that may further change throughout the lifespan of individuals.

Open Access

Spatiotemporally explicit model averaging for forecasting of Alaskan groundfish catch

  • Pages: 12308-12321
  • First Published: 07 December 2018
Description unavailable

We propose a forecasting method called spatiotemporally explicit model averaging (STEMA) to combine spatial and temporal information through model averaging. We focus on applying the method to four species of Alaskan groundfish and consider the effect of sea surface temperature (SST) on the forecasting of catch. Our method reduces forecasting errors significantly for most of the tested models when compared to two popular forecasting models and a modern spatial prediction model. For most of the preferred models, inclusion of SST in the model improved forecasting of catch.

Open Access

Can drones count gulls? Minimal disturbance and semiautomated image processing with an unmanned aerial vehicle for colony-nesting seabirds

  • Pages: 12322-12334
  • First Published: 04 December 2018
Description unavailable

A protocol of best practice relating to flight patterns, approach, and data collection for the survey of colony-nesting seabirds using a UAV was developed based on expertise from both a UAV and an ecological perspective. A GIS-based semiautomated classification process successfully counted gulls in the colonies, and we also propose a method to differentiate between the different gull species captured by our UAV survey. The work provides a valuable contribution to the growing body of research using UAVs for monitoring wildlife by adding a method using real-life wild bird populations.

Open Access

A broadly applicable COI primer pair and an efficient single-tube amplicon library preparation protocol for metabarcoding

  • Pages: 12335-12350
  • First Published: 11 December 2018
Description unavailable

Here, we present the forward primer “Sauron-S878,” specifically designed to facilitate library preparation for metabarcoding. This primer exhibits little bias between taxonomic groups. Furthermore, when paired with the reverse primer “jgHCO2198,” these primers can be used to attach MIDs and Illumina sequencing adapters in one reaction.

Open Access

Partitioning genetic and species diversity refines our understanding of species–genetic diversity relationships

  • Pages: 12351-12364
  • First Published: 11 December 2018
Description unavailable

This study uses a dataset of 1,709 single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNP) to compare species–genetic diversity correlations (SGDCs) between plant species diversity of high Andean wetlands and putatively neutral and non-neutral genetic diversity of the plant Carex gayana. We found contrasting SGDC patterns between the putatively neutral and non-neutral SNP loci, and that C. gayana SNP genetic diversity was conspicuously low in some wetlands compared to previously reported AFLP genetic diversity and species diversity estimates. Our results indicate that SNPs are well-suited genetic markers for SGDC studies.

Open Access

Determining social and population structures requires multiple approaches: A case study of the desert ant Cataglyphis israelensis

  • Pages: 12365-12374
  • First Published: 10 December 2018
Description unavailable

Cataglyphis is considered to be a model genus with regard to social and population structure diversity, this study sought to determine social and population structure of the recently described C. israelensis species in Israel. For this purpose, we used a multidisciplinary approach, rather than the commonly used single approach that is mostly based on genetics. Showing that C. israelensis colonies are monogyne and polydomous.

Open Access

Does metabolism constrain bird and mammal ranges and predict shifts in response to climate change?

  • Pages: 12375-12385
  • First Published: 10 December 2018
Description unavailable

We find evidence for metabolic constraints at cold range boundaries: the distributions of metabolic expansibility peaks at similar values for birds and mammals. Right skewed distributions suggest some species have adapted to elevate or evade metabolic constraints. Species’ traits help explain which species are able to evade metabolic constraints

Open Access

Maternal size and body condition predict the amount of post-fertilization maternal provisioning in matrotrophic fish

  • Pages: 12386-12396
  • First Published: 11 December 2018
Description unavailable

Maternal effects are particularly important, frequently having widespread consequences for offspring phenotype and fitness. Here, we studied potential effects of the maternal phenotype on offspring provisioning prior to and during gestation in the matrotrophic live-bearing fish species Poeciliopsis retropinna. We show that maternal traits strongly correlate with embryo size and body composition throughout pregnancy. Though, different maternal traits are differently related to pre- and post-fertilization maternal provisioning. We furthermore found that the composition of embryos changes during pregnancy independently of the maternal phenotype.

Open Access

An expanded molecular phylogeny of Plumbaginaceae, with emphasis on Limonium (sea lavenders): Taxonomic implications and biogeographic considerations

  • Pages: 12397-12424
  • First Published: 06 December 2018
Description unavailable

A large molecular phylogeny of Plumbaginaceae with a focus on Limonium provides new insights into the evolution and systematics of this family. Revisions and additions are proposed for the taxonomic entities of Plumbaginaceae and Limonium.

Open Access

Predator-prey feedback in a gyrfalcon-ptarmigan system?

  • Pages: 12425-12434
  • First Published: 28 November 2018
Description unavailable

Using multivariate autoregressive models together with a long-term survey of ptarmigan (prey) and gyrfalcon (predator) population dynamics, we show which kind of predator–prey interaction may be at work. Combining model fitting criteria, simulated cross-correlations and evaluation of model estimability through simulation, we conclude that full predator–prey feedback, including top-down control, is more likely here than bottom-up dynamics where the prey cycles independently of its predator.

Open Access

Predator size-structure and species identity determine cascading effects in a coastal ecosystem

  • Pages: 12435-12442
  • First Published: December 2018
Description unavailable

A field experiment in a salt marsh revealed subtle but widespread ecosystem consequences of shifting predator size-structure. These effects were contingent upon predator species identity. As climate change and harvesting alter predator size-structure, unanticipated ecosystem-level consequences may result.

Open Access

Silk properties and overwinter survival in gregarious butterfly larvae

  • Pages: 12443-12455
  • First Published: 04 December 2018
Description unavailable

The threat of parasites is very important for individuals entering long-term immobile periods, such as diapause. Adults of the Glanville fritillary butterfly reproduce early summer, and caterpillars diapause during the winter in silk nests that maintain over 50 individuals each. We tested whether qualitative or quantitative characteristics of the silk may contribute to the survival of diapausing caterpillars in the field.

Open Access

Genomic divergence in allopatric Northern Cardinals of the North American warm deserts is linked to behavioral differentiation

  • Pages: 12456-12478
  • First Published: 11 December 2018
Description unavailable

We examined the link between behavioral isolation and genetic isolation in one songbird species across the Cochise Filter Barrier. By integrating playback experiments and reduced-representation genome sequencing, we found strong song discrimination between populations on either side of the barrier coupled with high genomic differentiation. Such a link is consistent with a model where speciation across a barrier is maintained by behavioral isolating mechanisms.

Open Access

Rainforest trees respond to drought by modifying their hydraulic architecture

  • Pages: 12479-12491
  • First Published: 11 December 2018
Description unavailable

Understanding how tropical rainforest trees will respond to climate change is important given worrisome projection drought events in tropical regions. We found that mature tropical trees can modify their water transport mechanisms when exposed to drought, at least in the short term. These results allow us to highlight complexities for understanding plant responses to climate change.

Open Access

Seasonal drought in North America’s sagebrush biome structures dynamic mesic resources for sage-grouse

  • Pages: 12492-12505
  • First Published: 11 December 2018
Description unavailable

Predictions of intensifying water scarcity raises concerns over new demographic bottlenecks impacting sage-grouse populations in drought sensitive landscapes. We estimate biome-wide mesic resource productivity from 1984 to 2016 using remote sensing to identify patterns of food availability influencing selective pressures on sage-grouse. Spatiotemporal shifts in mesic abundance were apparent given biome-wide climatic trends that reduced precipitation below three quarters of normal in 20% of years. Drought sensitivity structured grouse populations wherein landscapes with the greatest uncertainty in mesic abundance and distribution supported the fewest grouse. We conclude that long-term population maintenance depends on a diversity of drought resistant mesic resources that offset climate driven variability in vegetative productivity.

Open Access

Urban forest fragmentation impoverishes native mammalian biodiversity in the tropics

  • Pages: 12506-12521
  • First Published: 04 December 2018
Description unavailable

Urban expansion has caused forest fragmentation in the tropics. Little is known on the conservation value of urban patches for maintaining mammalian biodiversity. Intervention measures such as species reintroduction and restocking the populations should be taken to restore forest patches.

Open Access

Programmable Automated System for Songbird Ecobehavioral Research (PASSER): Using flexible computer-integrated feeders to conduct high resolution studies of environment–behavior dynamics in songbirds

  • Pages: 12522-12532
  • First Published: 01 December 2018
Description unavailable

Computer-automated feeders provide a new way to collect hard-to-access data on behavior–environment interactions in songbirds. The PASSER system does just that, enabling a novel way to approach to ecobehavioral questions with a "big data" twist on spatiotemporal environmental variations.

Open Access

Combining active restoration and targeted grazing to establish native plants and reduce fuel loads in invaded ecosystems

  • Pages: 12533-12546
  • First Published: 11 December 2018
Description unavailable

Interrupting feedbacks between wildfire and invasion is a challenge worldwide and is especially pressing in western US drylands where ecosystem conversion has occurred at broad scales. We asked whether targeted grazing could be combined with high-input, spatially strategic restoration to create patches of self-sustaining, fire-resistant vegetation. We identified clear tradeoffs between restoring native plants and using livestock to reduce wildfire risk, but demonstrated that these undesirable tradeoffs can be minimized by boosting seed rates, using grazing-tolerant species, and altering timing of grazing.

Open Access

Can we rely on selected genetic markers for population identification? Evidence from coastal Atlantic cod

  • Pages: 12547-12558
  • First Published: 01 December 2018
Description unavailable

The use of genetic markers under putative selection in population studies carries the potential for erroneous identification of populations and misassignment of individuals to population of origin. We analyzed this problem in coastal Atlantic cod by screening temporal samples for genotypes from a high-graded SNP panel specifically designed to separate putative cod populations. Despite sampling over early life stages with high natural mortality, and thus potential for selection, we found no evidence for selection distorting population assignment in this species.

Open Access

Influence of fruit dispersal on genotypic diversity and migration rates of a clonal cactus from the Chihuahuan Desert

  • Pages: 12559-12575
  • First Published: 07 December 2018
Description unavailable

We study the effect of clonal and sexual propagule dispersal on the genotypic diversity of a clonal cactus and estimate migration rates at different scales. Plants were sampled and genotyped from each of three populations to determine multilocus genotypes based on ISSRs markers and analyzed with STRUCTURE and Geneland. Clonal offspring with limited mobility increased genetic structure, and three main genetic clusters correspond to the spatial location. Migration is mediated by sexual propagules among populations.

Open Access

Hibernation in bats (Mammalia: Chiroptera) did not evolve through positive selection of leptin

  • Pages: 12576-12596
  • First Published: 28 November 2018
Description unavailable

We explored the relationship between an ecologically important gene, lep, and the evolution of thermoregulatory regimes (hibernation, daily torpor, and homeothermy) in bats. Contrary to previous findings, we found no relationship here. We provide one of the first ancestral state reconstructions of thermoregulatory regimes in a mammalian group and present evidence suggesting that thermoregulatory regimes evolved in a continuous and ordered fashion rather than in a discrete and unordered manner.

Open Access

Spatiotemporal use predicts social partitioning of bottlenose dolphins with strong home range overlap

  • Pages: 12597-12614
  • First Published: 11 December 2018
Description unavailable

Animals that share a habitat do not necessarily do it at the same time. Using a novel approach, we discovered that bottlenose dolphins sharing most of their home range, formed social groups with individuals showing similar preferences of space and time usage. This type of information should be incorporated into management of at-risk populations as social groups with temporal differences in habitat use may be at risk from different threatening processes in the same habitat.

Open Access

Ecological and phylogenetic predictors of mobbing behavior in a tropical dry forest

  • Pages: 12615-12628
  • First Published: 12 December 2018
Description unavailable

In this study, we investigate whether certain functional traits, such as body size, foraging guild, foraging mode, and strata, as well as evolutionary relatedness, are important mobbing predictors. We compared the mobbing avian assemblage obtained with 230 playback experiments simulating the presence of the Ferruginous Pygmy-Owl (Glaucidium brasilianum) with 162 independent point counts aimed to survey the area’s avifauna in a dry forest of northeastern Brazil. We found significant differences in the functional and phylogenetic structure of the mobbing assemblage in relation to the avian community. Our results suggest that mobbing behavior is tightly associated with predation risk and the capacity of individual species to find and detect predators, indicating that functional and phylogenetic features can predict species participation in this complex animal behavior.

Open Access

Natal habitat preference induction in large mammals—Like mother, like child?

  • Pages: 12629-12640
  • First Published: 11 December 2018
Description unavailable

We used complementary approaches to assess natal habitat preference induction in a marked population of woodland caribou. All approaches compared the behavior of calves in their natal range to their behavior as independent subadults during the snow-covered and snow-free seasons. We found that habitat selection was a highly repeatable behavior across life stages and that caribou responses toward anthropogenic disturbances were repeatable year-round.

Open Access

High genomic diversity and candidate genes under selection associated with range expansion in eastern coyote (Canis latrans) populations

  • Pages: 12641-12655
  • First Published: 04 December 2018
Description unavailable

Here, we evaluate two recent and distinct eastward expansion fronts of a highly mobile carnivore, the coyote (Canis latrans), to investigate patterns of genomic diversity and identify variants that may have been under selection during range expansion. Counter to theoretical expectations for populations to bottleneck during range expansions, we observed minimal evidence for decreased genomic diversity across coyotes sampled along either expansion front. Furthermore, we identified 12 SNPs, located either within genes or regulatory regions, that were consistently associated with range expansion, some of which have functions putatively associated with dispersal behavior.

Open Access

Sympatry or syntopy? Investigating drivers of distribution and co-occurrence for two imperiled sea turtle species in Gulf of Mexico neritic waters

  • Pages: 12656-12669
  • First Published: 26 November 2018
Description unavailable

We investigated the spatial ecology of two sea turtle species that forage on benthic invertebrates in neritic GoM waters: Kemp's ridleys and loggerheads. We used satellite tracking and modeled behavioral modes and calculated individual home ranges, then compared foraging areas for the two species and determined the extent of co-occurrence to assess how they distribute themselves across this habitat and what drivers may be important to their distribution. Home ranges were about nine to ten times larger for Kemp's ridleys than for loggerheads. Species intersected off all U.S. coasts and the Yucatán Peninsula, but co-occurrence areas were small compared to species' distributions.

Open Access

Temperature effects on prey and basal resources exceed that of predators in an experimental community

  • Pages: 12670-12680
  • First Published: 26 November 2018
Description unavailable

Climate warming can alter the structure of communities. Here, we tested whether warming alters the structure of communities by altering the interactions at the higher trophic levels. We found weaker effects of warming on the interactions at higher trophic levels, but still its stronger effects in restructuring communities by altering the responses of the lower trophic groups.

Open Access

Comparative analysis of adaptive and neutral markers of Drosophila mediopunctata populations dispersed among forest fragments

  • Pages: 12681-12693
  • First Published: 22 November 2018
Description unavailable

We sampled Drosophila mediopunctata populations from physiognomic and climatically distinct forest remnants dispersed on two adjacent geomorphologic regions. We analyzed microsatellites (neutral genetic marker) and chromosomal inversions (adaptive genetic marker). Data of the first showed low structuration among populations suggesting that they are extremely large, greatly influenced by gene flow. The second showed significant differences in frequencies among populations and correlations with climatic and geographical variables indicating that divergence among populations could be an adaptive response to their environment.

Open Access

Effect of rearing conditions on the correlation between larval development time and pupal weight of the rice stem borer, Chilo suppressalis

  • Pages: 12694-12701
  • First Published: 20 November 2018
Description unavailable

We examined the relation between larval development time and pupal weight of the rice stem borer Chilo suppressalis under laboratory and field conditions. Our results showed that the two traits can be positive, zero or negative, depending on rearing conditions.

Open Access

Insect herbivory on seedlings of rainforest trees: Effects of density and distance of conspecific and heterospecific neighbors

  • Pages: 12702-12711
  • First Published: 07 December 2018
Description unavailable

Natural enemies of plants such as insect herbivores can contribute to structuring and maintaining tree diversity in tropical forests, usually reported through Janzen–Connell mechanisms. Insect herbivores that feed on more than one plant species may link the regeneration dynamics of their host species through “apparent competition” or “apparent mutualism.” Our data highlight the possibility that herbivore-mediated effects can also occur across species, facilitated by herbivores that are specialised perhaps at the level of plant genus rather than plant species.

Open Access

Context-dependent costs and benefits of tuberculosis resistance traits in a wild mammalian host

  • Pages: 12712-12726
  • First Published: 06 December 2018
Description unavailable

Here, we identify two distinct forms of tuberculosis resistance that come at distinct fitness costs in a wild population of African buffalo. This empirical evidence directly supports previous theoretical work in evolutionary trade-offs and provides a novel example of differences in pace-of-life life history evolution in a wild mammal. Furthermore, we present a novel method for the estimation of heritability using marker-based relatedness estimates.

Open Access

Timing of maternal exposure to toxic cyanobacteria and offspring fitness in Daphnia magna: Implications for the evolution of anticipatory maternal effects

  • Pages: 12727-12736
  • First Published: 20 November 2018
Description unavailable

Waterfleas are negatively affected by toxic cyanobacteria, and therefore, mothers are expected to mitigate the negative effects to their offspring. We use a series of experiments to test whether these beneficial maternal effects represent an inheritance system evolved to transmit information about the toxicity of the environment. Our results and meta-analysis of previous work suggest that although there can be fitness benefits of having a mother exposed to cyanobacteria, these effects are unlikely to be a result of selection for a mechanism that enables transmission of information across generations.

Open Access

Applying generalized allometric regressions to predict live body mass of tropical and temperate arthropods

  • Pages: 12737-12749
  • First Published: 06 December 2018
Description unavailable

The ecological implications of body size extend from the biology of individual organisms to ecosystem-level processes. Length–mass regressions are a powerful tool to predict body mass based on morphological traits of organisms. We present a comprehensive range of parameters for predicting arthropod body mass based on body length, width, taxonomy, and geographic origin.

Open Access

Effects of water exchange rate on morphological and physiological characteristics of two submerged macrophytes from Erhai Lake

  • Pages: 12750-12760
  • First Published: 20 November 2018
Description unavailable

The effect of water exchange rate (WER) on individual characteristics of submerged macrophytes has been investigated. Dissolved oxygen concentration and soil oxidation–reduction potential gradually increased with increasing WER. The growth and elongation of roots were both stimulated with increasing WER. Root’s phosphorus and nitrogen absorbing abilities gradually increased with increasing WER, and thus promoting the growth of aquatic macrophytes.

Open Access

Flying between raindrops: Strong seasonal turnover of several Lepidoptera groups in lowland rainforests of Mount Cameroon

  • Pages: 12761-12772
  • First Published: 03 December 2018
Description unavailable

Seasonality patterns of several groups of Lepidoptera were investigated at the foothills of Mount Cameroon, West Africa, one of the wettest places worldwide. We revealed a strong species turnover of fruit-feeding Lepidoptera and Arctiinae among the seasons, indicating the existence of relatively high specialization of these communities for particular seasons.

Open Access

The burrow behavior and influenced factors of a prairie subterranean zokor (Myospalax psilurus)

  • Pages: 12773-12779
  • First Published: 07 December 2018
Description unavailable

The Transbaikal zokor (Myospalax psilurus) is a dominant rodent distributed in the meadow steppe of northern China. It is a major underground pest rodent without hibernation. The underground roots of grassland vegetation are mainly used for its food. From September to October of autumn, it stored a large amount of food for overwintering, and reproduced in May of the following year. The harm to grassland vegetation is very serious.

Open Access

Rapid adaptation to high temperatures in Chironomus riparius

  • Pages: 12780-12789
  • First Published: 03 December 2018
Description unavailable

In this manuscript, we investigated the way Chironomus riparius copes with temperature variations occurring in between generations. We used a common garden approach where we submitted C. riparius individuals at different temperatures after raising previous generations at constant temperatures and used mortality as response factor. The results were dependent not only to the treatment temperature but also on the temperature previous generations were raised at. This led to the conclusion that adaptation to temperature has occurred.

Open Access

Connecting paths between juvenile and adult habitats in the Atlantic green turtle using genetics and satellite tracking

  • Pages: 12790-12802
  • First Published: 11 December 2018
Description unavailable

We satellite tracked 31 juvenile green turtles tagged in Martinique Island, and performed mixed stock analysis on 40 green turtles sampled at the same site to assess their natal origin. Our results from mixed stock analysis confirm that these juveniles are descendant from females laying on several Caribbean and Atlantic beaches, mostly from Suriname and French Guiana, but also from more South Brazil. These results were confirmed by the tracking data showing that 50% of the tracked turtles reached the Brazilian foraging grounds used by the adult green turtles coming from French Guiana.

Open Access

The Gambian epauletted fruit bat shows increased genetic divergence in the Ethiopian highlands and in an area of rapid urbanization

  • Pages: 12803-12820
  • First Published: 11 December 2018
Description unavailable

The Gambian epauletted fruit bat (Epomophorus gambianus), known to harbor antibodies against Ebola virus, is an abundant species that roost in both urban and rural settings. However, neither observational nor phylogenetic studies have identified its dispersal range. In this study, comparative analyses of mitochondrial and nuclear markers across the known distribution of E. gambianus showed population panmixia, except for the colonies sampled in Ethiopia and southern Ghana, where dispersal biased was detected.

Open Access

Quantitative acoustic differentiation of cryptic species illustrated with King and Clapper rails

  • Pages: 12821-12831
  • First Published: 20 November 2018
Description unavailable

Reliable species identification is vital for survey and monitoring programs. We assessed the accuracy and effectiveness of three parametric and six nonparametric statistical classification methods for differentiating between the vocalizations of King and Clapper rails. This work suggests that appropriate statistical tools may allow reasonable species-level classification accuracy of recorded calls and provide an alternative to species classification where other capture- or genotype-based survey techniques are not possible.

Open Access

Variation in mandible development and its relationship to dependence on parents across burying beetles

  • Pages: 12832-12840
  • First Published: 21 November 2018
Description unavailable

Juvenile burying beetles display interspecific variation in independence, wherein some species but not others require direct parental care to survive. Here, we show that this variation is strongly, but imperfectly correlated to the presence of serrations on the inner edge of the mandible. We argue that these serrations are lost in species where dependence previously evolved and suggest potential avenues that could explain this pattern of morphological evolution.

Open Access

Porous barriers? Assessment of gene flow within and among sympatric long-eared bat species

  • Pages: 12841-12854
  • First Published: 07 December 2018
Description unavailable

In Western Europe, three long-eared bat species pose important difficulties of identification, that could be explained by either ancient or ongoing hybridization. We show, with a combination of markers, there is no gene flow between species as no hybrids have been evidenced. Although they exhibit a highly cryptic morphology, these bas show idiosyncratic responses to barriers to gene flow represented by the Alps and the Ligurian Sea.

Open Access

The fitness effects of a pale mutant in the aposematic seed bug Lygaeus simulans indicate pleiotropy between warning coloration and life history

  • Pages: 12855-12866
  • First Published: 04 December 2018
Description unavailable

Our manuscript describes the discovery and analysis of a pale phenotype in the aposematic Lygaeus simulans. Through a series of experiments, we show that the pale phenotype inherits as a single Mendelian locus, recessive to the wild type. We then show that the pale phenotype is associated with variation in life-history traits, including fecundity and body size. Moreover, we see heterozygous advantage for fecundity. As such, our data are consistent with an underlying “supergene” linking color with life-history traits, as seen in other aposematic species, and the data represent the starting point for further analysis of the genetics of this system.

Open Access

Varying dataset resolution alters predictive accuracy of spatially explicit ensemble models for avian species distribution

  • Pages: 12867-12878
  • First Published: 06 December 2018
Description unavailable

We show that increasing computational power and model complexity for prediction of species distribution does not always result in a concomitant increase in accuracy, and can even decrease accuracy. Therefore, modelers need to carefully choose methods appropriate to their study species, scale, and resolution, and where feasible compare multiple predictions.

Open Access

A barrier island perspective on species–area relationships

  • Pages: 12879-12889
  • First Published: 08 December 2018
Description unavailable

Predictions of species richness by island area are a classical cornerstone in ecology, while the specific features of barrier islands have been little appreciated. Here, we tested for relationships between species richness or species incidence and island area (SAR), island habitat diversity, and further island parameters on barrier islands in the North Sea. Overall species richness was explained best by habitat diversity (Shannon index of habitat types) and sedimentation/erosion processes on dynamic islands.

Open Access

Ranging patterns, spatial overlap, and association with dolphin morbillivirus exposure in common bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) along the Georgia, USA coast

  • Pages: 12890-12904
  • First Published: 26 November 2018
Description unavailable

During 2013–2015, an outbreak of dolphin morbillivirus (DMV) occurred in the western North Atlantic in which over 1,600 common bottlenose dolphins stranded. A health assessment and telemetry study was initiated to assess DMV prevalence and ranging patterns of dolphins along the Georgia coast. The results of this study suggest that spatial overlap between dolphin stocks may play a role in DMV exposure

Open Access

Linking beaver dam affected flow dynamics to upstream passage of Arctic grayling

  • Pages: 12905-12917
  • First Published: 04 December 2018
Description unavailable

Beaver reintroductions and beaver dam structures are an increasingly utilized ecological tool for rehabilitating degraded streams, yet the impacts of beaver dams on upstream fish migration remain unclear. Our study provides a framework for co-managing beaver and fish based on hydrology, dam characteristics, and fish attributes. This framework can be applied to reduce barrier effects when and where beaver dams pose a significant threat to the upstream migration of fish populations while maintaining the diverse ecological benefits of beaver activity when dams are not a threat to fish passage.

Open Access

Trade-offs for butterfly alpha and beta diversity in human-modified landscapes and tropical rainforests

  • Pages: 12918-12928
  • First Published: 06 December 2018
Description unavailable

Sugarcane areas supported higher species richness, demonstrating the potential for conservation at local scales in human-modified landscapes. In contrast, beta diversity was highest in urban areas, likely driven by spatial and temporal variation in plant composition within the urban landscapes. Thus, while improving conservation on human-modified landscapes may improve local alpha richness, conserving variation in natural vegetation is critical for maintaining high beta diversity.

Open Access

Ecomorphological diversity of Australian tadpoles

  • Pages: 12929-12939
  • First Published: 26 November 2018
Description unavailable

Ecomorphological guilds act as a proxy for studying assemblages of aquatic environments and modelling ecosystems. Here we study guilds of tadpoles sampled from all species of Australia to understand whether body shape can be an indicator of guild. We find that some guilds have distinct body shapes but all guilds together form a morphological continuum suggesting tadpole body shape is more variable than generally appreciated.

Open Access

Environmental gradients in old-growth Appalachian forest predict fine-scale distribution, co-occurrence, and density of woodland salamanders

  • Pages: 12940-12952
  • First Published: 04 December 2018
Description unavailable

This study addresses how environmental gradients generated from natural disturbance regimes in pristine old-growth Appalachian forest influence the distribution, density, and cohabitation of organisms with notorious niche overlap—woodland salamanders (Caudata:Plethodontidae:Plethodon). We found that the comparative distribution and the abundance of salamanders reflected patterns in habitat suitability associated with canopy disturbance and solar exposure. Furthermore, cohabitation between species was primarily driven by factors of habitat suitability rather than biotic interactions, indicating lack of competition.

Open Access

Eusociality outcompetes egalitarian and solitary strategies when resources are limited and reproduction is costly

  • Pages: 12953-12964
  • First Published: 11 December 2018
Description unavailable

Ecological factors, specifically resource variance and competition, tend to be ignored in models of social evolution. We here derive optimal resource sharing strategies, from egalitarian to eusocial groups. Our model shows that in most environmental conditions, eusociality trumps solitary and egalitarian living.

Open Access

Parental habituation to human disturbance over time reduces fear of humans in coyote offspring

  • Pages: 12965-12980
  • First Published: 11 December 2018
Description unavailable

Time in anthropogenic contexts reduces wildlife fear in humans for a broad array of taxa. Here, we provide evidence to suggest that this process in parents can fundamentally contribute to offspring's fear of people. As a result, habituated parents that demonstrate risky behavior provide cues for offspring to do the same.

Open Access

Defensive chemicals of neighboring plants limit visits of herbivorous insects: Associational resistance within a plant population

  • Pages: 12981-12990
  • First Published: 11 December 2018
Description unavailable

We examine that the neighborhood effect promotes the existence of genotypes with much lower defense investment under the multiple levels of defense against herbivores.

Open Access

Observer-free experimental evaluation of habitat and distance effects on the detection of anuran and bird vocalizations

  • Pages: 12991-13003
  • First Published: 11 December 2018
Description unavailable

We use playback, and recording, devices to examine how animal vocalizations attenuate differentially among habitat types. We found that signals travel further in open habitats versus closed canopy habitats. Our findings refute assumptions of equal probability of detection among species, habitats, and distances, which are often implicitly assumed.

Open Access

Effects of a presumably protective endosymbiont on life-history characters and their plasticity for its host aphid on three plants

  • Pages: 13004-13013
  • First Published: 11 December 2018
Description unavailable

The presumably protective (against parasitoids for aphids) endosymbiont Hamiltonella defensa was found to play important roles in insect-plant interactions through altering its host aphid's life-history traits and their plasticity on multiple plants, and the underlying genetic variation as well, indicating novel functional roles of endosymbionts in evolutionary ecology of aphids.

Open Access

Phylogeographic analyses of a widely distributed Populus davidiana: Further evidence for the existence of glacial refugia of cool-temperate deciduous trees in northern East Asia

  • Pages: 13014-13026
  • First Published: 11 December 2018
Description unavailable

The Populus davidiana was the first time to be used for providing robust evidence to clarify the issue of refugia in northeast China, and these results are of great importance for understanding the influence of Quaternary glaciations on the distribution and evolution of species in East Asia.

REVIEWS

Open Access

Exploring the hybrid speciation continuum in birds

  • Pages: 13027-13034
  • First Published: 05 December 2018
Description unavailable

Several bird species might be of hybrid origin. I propose to discriminate between two types of hybrid speciation: type I where reproductive isolation is a direct consequence of hybridization and type II where it is the by-product of other processes. This diversity in hybrid bird species across a range of divergence times also provides an excellent opportunity to study the evolution of hybrid genomes in terms of genome stabilization and adaptation.

Open Access

Making sense of intralocus and interlocus sexual conflict

  • Pages: 13035-13050
  • First Published: 11 December 2018
Description unavailable

Sexual conflict occurs in two forms: intralocus and interlocus conflict. Each has its own distinct ecological and evolutionary dynamics, but they are sometimes poorly distinguished from one another, which can be confusing to those who are not familiar with sexual conflict. Here, we describe differences between these two types of sexual conflict and discuss how future research may shed further light on them and their genetic bases.