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ZOOLOGY (134 journals)                     

Showing 1 - 0 of 0 Journals sorted alphabetically
Acta Herpetologica     Open Access   (Followers: 4)
Acta Theriologica     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 6)
Acta Zoologica     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 4)
Acta Zoologica Cracoviensia     Free   (Followers: 2)
Acta zoológica mexicana     Open Access  
Advances in Zoology and Botany     Open Access  
African Invertebrates     Open Access  
African Journal of Herpetology     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 1)
African Journal of Wildlife Research     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 1)
African Zoology     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 5)
American Journal of Zoological Research     Open Access  
Animal Behaviour     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 114)
Animal Biology     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 7)
Animal Biology & Animal Husbandry     Open Access   (Followers: 4)
Animal Biotelemetry     Open Access   (Followers: 1)
Animal Genetics     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 8)
Animal Migration     Open Access   (Followers: 1)
Animal Studies Journal     Open Access   (Followers: 4)
Annales Zoologici     Full-text available via subscription  
Annales Zoologici Fennici     Open Access  
Annals of Animal Science     Open Access   (Followers: 1)
Annals of the Ditsong National Museum of Natural History     Full-text available via subscription  
Annual Review of Animal Biosciences     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 4)
Anthrozoos : A Multidisciplinary Journal of The Interactions of People & Animals     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 7)
Applied Animal Behaviour Science     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 17)
Applied Entomology and Zoology     Partially Free   (Followers: 2)
Aquatic Mammals     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 8)
Aquatic Sciences     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 12)
Arquivos de Ciências Veterinárias e Zoologia da UNIPAR     Open Access  
Arthropod Management Tests     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 2)
Asian Journal of Animal and Veterinary Advances     Open Access   (Followers: 7)
Australian Journal of Zoology     Hybrid Journal  
Bangladesh Journal of Zoology     Open Access  
Bioacoustics : The International Journal of Animal Sound and its Recording     Partially Free   (Followers: 2)
Biodiversidade     Open Access  
Bird Study     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 24)
Brazilian Journal of Veterinary Research and Animal Science     Open Access   (Followers: 8)
British Birds     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 24)
Bulletin of the Museum of Comparative Zoology     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 2)
Canadian Journal of Animal Science     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 3)
Canadian Journal of Zoology     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 15)
Contributions to Zoology     Open Access   (Followers: 3)
Current Zoology     Full-text available via subscription  
Der Zoologische Garten     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 2)
Ecology of Freshwater Fish     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 18)
European Journal of Taxonomy     Open Access   (Followers: 3)
Euscorpius     Open Access  
EvoDevo     Open Access   (Followers: 2)
Fish and Fisheries     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 28)
Frontiers in Zoology     Open Access   (Followers: 7)
Graellsia     Open Access  
Herpetology Notes     Open Access   (Followers: 1)
Hystrix, the Italian Journal of Mammalogy     Open Access  
i-Perception     Open Access   (Followers: 2)
Iheringia. Série Zoologia     Open Access   (Followers: 1)
In Vitro Cellular & Developmental Biology - Animal     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 1)
Integrative Zoology     Hybrid Journal  
International Journal of Odonatology     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 1)
International Journal of Zoological Research     Open Access   (Followers: 1)
International Journal of Zoology     Open Access   (Followers: 2)
International Studies on Sparrows     Open Access  
International Zoo Yearbook     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 2)
Invertebrate Reproduction & Development     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 3)
Italian Journal of Animal Science     Open Access   (Followers: 2)
Italian Journal of Zoology     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 1)
Journal of Agrobiology     Open Access   (Followers: 3)
Journal of Animal Ecology     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 56)
Journal of Animal Physiology and Animal Nutrition     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 5)
Journal of Apicultural Science     Open Access   (Followers: 2)
Journal of Applied Animal Research     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 3)
Journal of Basic & Applied Zoology : Physiology     Open Access   (Followers: 2)
Journal of Experimental Zoology Part A: Ecological Genetics and Physiology     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 3)
Journal of Experimental Zoology Part B : Molecular and Developmental Evolution     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 2)
Journal of Freshwater Ecology     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 15)
Journal of Herpetology     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 7)
Journal of Morphology     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 2)
Journal of Venomous Animals and Toxins     Open Access   (Followers: 4)
Journal of Venomous Animals and Toxins including Tropical Diseases     Open Access  
Journal of Wildlife Management     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 32)
Journal of Zoo and Aquarium Research     Open Access   (Followers: 3)
Journal of Zoological Systematics and Evolutionary Research     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 3)
Journal of Zoology     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 19)
Laboratory Animals     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 13)
Mammalia     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 6)
Memorias de la Conferencia Interna en Medicina y Aprovechamiento de Fauna Silvestre, Exótica y no Convencional     Open Access  
Monographs of the Transvaal Museum     Full-text available via subscription  
Natural History Sciences     Hybrid Journal  
New Zealand Journal of Zoology     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 3)
Papéis Avulsos de Zoologia     Open Access  
Parasite     Open Access   (Followers: 4)
Physiological and Biochemical Zoology     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 6)
Polish Journal of Entomology     Open Access   (Followers: 4)
Primate Biology     Open Access  
Protist Genomics     Open Access  
Redia : Journal of Zoology     Open Access  
Remote Sensing in Ecology and Conservation     Open Access   (Followers: 13)
Research in Zoology     Open Access   (Followers: 1)
Revista Brasileira de Reprodução Animal     Open Access  
Revista Brasileira de Zoologia     Open Access  
Revista de Biología Marina y Oceanografía     Open Access  
Revista de Educação Continuada em Medicina Veterinária e Zootecnia     Open Access  
Revista de Zoologia     Open Access   (Followers: 1)
Russian Journal of Herpetology     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 1)
Scientific Journal of Animal Science     Open Access   (Followers: 3)
Scientific Journal of Zoology     Open Access   (Followers: 2)
SHILAP Revista de Lepidopterologia     Open Access   (Followers: 2)
Skeletal Muscle     Open Access   (Followers: 1)
South American Journal of Herpetology     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 3)
Sri Lanka Journal of Aquatic Sciences     Open Access   (Followers: 1)
Travaux du Muséum National d’Histoire Naturelle “Grigore Antipa”     Open Access  
Tropical Zoology     Partially Free   (Followers: 1)
Turkish Journal of Zoology     Open Access  
University Journal of Zoology, Rajshahi University     Open Access  
Veterinária e Zootecnia     Open Access  
Waterbirds     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 9)
Wildlife Society Bulletin     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 9)
World Rabbit Science     Full-text available via subscription  
Zoo Biology     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 7)
ZooKeys     Open Access   (Followers: 4)
Zoologia (Curitiba)     Open Access   (Followers: 1)
Zoologica Poloniae : The Journal of Polish Zoological Society     Open Access   (Followers: 1)
Zoologica Scripta     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 2)
Zoological Journal of the Linnean Society     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 7)
Zoological Letters     Open Access  
Zoological Science     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 2)
Zoological Studies     Open Access   (Followers: 1)
Zoologische Mededelingen     Open Access  
Zoologischer Anzeiger - A Journal of Comparative Zoology     Hybrid Journal  
Zoologist (The)     Full-text available via subscription  
Zoology     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 5)
Zoology and Ecology     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 4)
Zoomorphology     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 1)
Zoosystematics and Evolution - Mitteilungen Aus Dem Museum Fur Naturkunde Zu Berlin     Open Access   (Followers: 1)
Zootecnia     Open Access  


Journal Cover Journal of Animal Ecology
  [SJR: 3.359]   [H-I: 119]   [56 followers]  Follow
   Hybrid Journal Hybrid journal (It can contain Open Access articles)
   ISSN (Print) 0021-8790 - ISSN (Online) 1365-2656
   Published by John Wiley and Sons Homepage  [1611 journals]
  • Seasonal detours by soaring migrants shaped by wind regimes along the East
           Atlantic Flyway
    • Authors: Wouter M. G. Vansteelant; Judy Shamoun-Baranes, Willem Manen, Jan Diermen, Willem Bouten
      Abstract: Avian migrants often make substantial detours between their seasonal destinations. It is likely some species do this to make the most of predictable wind regimes along their respective flyways. We test this hypothesis by studying orientation behaviour of a long-distance soaring migrant in relation to prevailing winds along the East Atlantic Flyway.We tracked 62 migratory journeys of 12 adult European Honey Buzzards Pernis apivorus with GPS loggers. Hourly fixes were annotated with local wind vectors from a global atmospheric model to determine orientation behaviours with respect to the buzzards’ seasonal goal destinations. This enabled us to determine hot spots where buzzards overdrifted and overcompensated for side winds. We then determined whether winds along the buzzards’ detours differed from winds prevailing elsewhere in the flyway.Honey Buzzards cross western Africa using different routes in autumn and spring. In autumn, they overcompensated for westward winds to circumvent the Atlas Mountains on the eastern side and then overdrifted with south-westward winds while crossing the Sahara. In spring, however, they frequently overcompensated for eastward winds to initiate a westward detour at the start of their journey. They later overdrifted with side winds north-westward over the Sahel and north-eastward over the Sahara, avoiding adverse winds over the central Sahara.We conclude that Honey Buzzards make seasonal detours to utilize more supportive winds further en route and thereby expend less energy while crossing the desert. Lifelong tracking studies will be helpful to elucidate how honey buzzards and other migrants learn complex routes to exploit atmospheric circulation patterns from local to synoptic scales.Many migrating birds engage in seasonal detours during migration. The authors show how a Palearctic soaring migrant initiates a detour into a headwind at the start of spring migration in anticipation of tailwinds later on in its journey.
      PubDate: 2016-10-18T19:00:02.808224-05:
      DOI: 10.1111/1365-2656.12593
  • Fast-slow life history is correlated with individual differences in
           movements and prey selection in an aquatic predator in the wild
    • Authors: Shinnosuke Nakayama; Tobias Rapp, Robert Arlinghaus
      Abstract: Fast and slow life histories are proposed to covary with consistent individual differences in behaviour, but little is known whether it holds in the wild, where individuals experience natural fluctuations of the environment.We investigated whether individual differences in behaviour, such as movement traits and prey selection, are linked to variation in life-history traits in Eurasian perch (Perca fluviatilis) in the wild.Using high-resolution acoustic telemetry, we collected the positional data of fish in a whole natural lake and estimated individual movement traits by fitting a 2-state correlated random walk model. Prey selection was inferred from stable isotope analysis using scale samples. Life-history traits were estimated by fitting a biphasic growth model to an individual growth trajectory back-calculated from scale samples.Life-history traits were correlated with behavioural traits such as movements and prey selection. Individuals with higher reproductive effort were found to switch more frequently between active and inactive modes and show greater reliance on prey from pelagic pathways (indicated by lower δ13C). Further, individuals with faster juvenile growth were found to stay active for a longer time during the adult stage.Our results demonstrate the link between individual behavioural differences and fast-slow life-history traits under ecologically relevant conditions.This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.
      PubDate: 2016-10-17T08:21:13.050584-05:
      DOI: 10.1111/1365-2656.12603
  • Corrigendum
    • PubDate: 2016-10-17T05:07:09.786449-05:
      DOI: 10.1111/1365-2656.12595
  • Decoupled diversity dynamics in green and brown webs during primary
           succession in a salt marsh
    • Authors: Maarten Schrama; Fons der Plas, Matty P. Berg, Han Olff
      Abstract: 1.Terrestrial ecosystems are characterised by a strong functional connection between the green (plant-herbivore-based) and brown (detritus-detritivore-based) parts of the food web, which both develop over successional time. However, the interlinked changes in green and brown food web diversity patterns in relation to key ecosystem processes are rarely studied.2.Here, we demonstrate changes in species richness, diversity and evenness over a wide range of invertebrate green and brown trophic groups during 100 years of primary succession in a salt marsh ecosystem, using a well-calibrated chronosequence.3.We contrast two hypotheses on the relationship between green and brown food web diversity across succession: i) ‘coupled diversity hypothesis’, which predicts that all trophic groups covary similarly with the main drivers of successional ecosystem assembly versus ii) the ‘decoupled diversity hypothesis’, where green and brown trophic groups diversity respond to different drivers during succession.4.We found that, while species richness for plants and invertebrate herbivores (green web groups) both peaked at intermediate productivity and successional age, the diversity of macro-detritivores, microarthropod microbivores and secondary consumers (brown web groups) continuously increased towards the latest successional stages. These results suggest that green web trophic groups are mainly driven by vegetation parameters, such as the amount of bare soil, vegetation biomass production, and vegetation height, while brown web trophic groups are mostly driven by the production and standing stock of dead organic material and soil development.5.Our results show that plant diversity cannot simply be used as a proxy for the diversity of all other species groups that drive ecosystem functioning, as brown and green diversity components in our ecosystem responded differently to successional gradients.This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.
      PubDate: 2016-10-14T09:26:59.595831-05:
      DOI: 10.1111/1365-2656.12602
  • Accounting for genetic differences among unknown parents in
           microevolutionary studies: How to include genetic groups in quantitative
           genetic animal models
    • Authors: Matthew E. Wolak; Jane M. Reid
      Abstract: 1.Quantifying and predicting microevolutionary responses to environmental change requires unbiased estimation of quantitative genetic parameters in wild populations. ‘Animal models’, which utilise pedigree data to separate genetic and environmental effects on phenotypes, provide powerful means to estimate key parameters and have revolutionised quantitative genetic analyses of wild populations.2.However, pedigrees collected in wild populations commonly contain many individuals with unknown parents. When unknown parents are non-randomly associated with genetic values for focal traits, animal model parameter estimates can be severely biased. Yet, such bias has not previously been highlighted and statistical methods designed to minimise such biases have not been implemented in evolutionary ecology.3.We first illustrate how the occurrence of non-random unknown parents in population pedigrees can substantially bias animal model predictions of breeding values and estimates of additive genetic variance, and create spurious temporal trends in predicted breeding values in the absence of local selection. We then introduce ‘genetic group’ methods, which were developed in agricultural science, and explain how these methods can minimise bias in quantitative genetic parameter estimates stemming from genetic heterogeneity among individuals with unknown parents.4.We summarise the conceptual foundations of genetic group animal models and provide extensive, step-by-step tutorials that demonstrate how to fit such models in a variety of software programs. Furthermore, we provide new functions in R that extend current software capabilities and provide a standardized approach across software programs to implement genetic group methods.5.Beyond simply alleviating bias, genetic group animal models can directly estimate new parameters pertaining to key biological processes. We discuss one such example, where genetic group methods potentially allow the microevolutionary consequences of local selection to be distinguished from effects of immigration and resulting gene flow.6.We highlight some remaining limitations of genetic group models and discuss opportunities for further development and application in evolutionary ecology. We suggest that genetic group methods should no longer be overlooked by evolutionary ecologists, but should become standard components of the toolkit for animal model analyses of wild population datasets.This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.
      PubDate: 2016-10-12T05:55:43.070355-05:
      DOI: 10.1111/1365-2656.12597
  • Genetic Allee effects and their interaction with ecological Allee effects
    • Authors: Meike J. Wittmann; Hanna Stuis, Dirk Metzler
      Abstract: 1.It is now widely accepted that genetic processes such as inbreeding depression and loss of genetic variation can increase the extinction risk of small populations. However, it is generally unclear whether extinction risk from genetic causes gradually increases with decreasing population size or whether there is a sharp transition around a specific threshold population size. In the ecological literature, such threshold phenomena are called “strong Allee effects” and they can arise for example from mate limitation in small populations.2.In this study, we aim to a) develop a meaningful notion of a “strong genetic Allee effect”, b) explore whether and under what conditions such an effect can arise from inbreeding depression due to recessive deleterious mutations, and c) quantify the interaction of potential genetic Allee effects with the well-known mate-finding Allee effect.3.We define a strong genetic Allee effect as a genetic process that causes a population's survival probability to be a sigmoid function of its initial size. The inflection point of this function defines the critical population size. To characterize survival-probability curves, we develop and analyze simple stochastic models for the ecology and genetics of small populations.4.Our results indicate that inbreeding depression can indeed cause a strong genetic Allee effect, but only if individuals carry sufficiently many deleterious mutations (lethal equivalents). Populations suffering from a genetic Allee effect often first grow, then decline as inbreeding depression sets in, and then potentially recover as deleterious mutations are purged. Critical population sizes of ecological and genetic Allee effects appear to be often additive, but even superadditive interactions are possible.5.Many published estimates for the number of lethal equivalents in birds and mammals fall in the parameter range where strong genetic Allee effects are expected. Unfortunately, extinction risk due to genetic Allee effects can easily be underestimated as populations with genetic problems often grow initially, but then crash later. Also interactions between ecological and genetic Allee effects can be strong and should not be neglected when assessing the viability of endangered or introduced populations.This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.
      PubDate: 2016-10-12T03:51:17.911272-05:
      DOI: 10.1111/1365-2656.12598
  • African departure rather than migration speed determines variation in
           spring arrival in pied flycatchers
    • Authors: J. Ouwehand; C. Both
      Abstract: 1.Properly timed spring migration enhances reproduction and survival. Climate change requires organisms to respond to changes such as advanced spring phenology. Pied flycatchers Ficedula hypoleuca have become a model species to study such phenological adaptations of long-distance migratory songbirds to climate change, but data on individuals’ time schedules outside the breeding season are still lacking.2.Using light-level geolocators we studied variation in migration schedules across the year in a pied flycatcher population in the Netherlands, which sheds light on the ability for individual adjustments in spring arrival timing to track environmental changes at their breeding grounds.3.We show that variation in arrival dates to breeding sites in 2014 was caused by variation in departure date from Sub-Saharan Africa, and not by environmental conditions encountered en route. Spring migration duration was short for all individuals, on average two weeks. Males migrated ahead of females in spring, while migration schedules in autumn were flexibly adjusted according to breeding duties. Individuals were therefore not consistently early or late throughout the year.4.In fast migrants like our Dutch pied flycatchers, advancement of arrival to climate change likely requires changes in spring departure dates. Adaptation for earlier arrival may be slowed down by harsh circumstances in winter, or years with high costs associated with early migration.This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.
      PubDate: 2016-10-10T21:05:30.514229-05:
      DOI: 10.1111/1365-2656.12599
  • Let's stay together? Intrinsic and extrinsic factors involved in pair bond
           dissolution in a recolonizing wolf population
    • Authors: Cyril Milleret; Petter Wabakken, Olof Liberg, Mikael Åkesson, Øystein Flagstad, Harry Peter Andreassen, Håkan Sand
      Abstract: For socially monogamous species, breeder bond dissolution has important consequences for population dynamics, but the extent to which extrinsic or intrinsic population factors causes pair dissolution remain poorly understood, especially among carnivores.Using an extensive life-history data set, a survival analysis and competing risks framework, we examined the fate of 153 different wolf (Canis lupus) pairs in the recolonizing Scandinavian wolf population, during 14 winters of snow tracking and DNA monitoring.Wolf pair dissolution was generally linked to a mortality event and was strongly affected by extrinsic (i.e. anthropogenic) causes. No divorce was observed, and among the pair dissolution where causes have been identified, death of one or both wolves was always involved. Median time from pair formation to pair dissolution was three consecutive winters (i.e. approximately 2 years). Pair dissolution was mostly human-related, primarily caused by legal control actions (36·7%), verified poaching (9·2%) and traffic-related causes (2·1%). Intrinsic factors, such as disease and age, accounted for only 7·7% of pair dissolutions. The remaining 44·3% of dissolution events were from unknown causes, but we argue that a large portion could be explained by an additional source of human-caused mortality, cryptic poaching.Extrinsic population factors, such as variables describing the geographical location of the pair, had a stronger effect on risk of pair dissolution compared to anthropogenic landscape characteristics. Population intrinsic factors, such as the inbreeding coefficient of the male pair member, had a negative effect on pair bond duration. The mechanism behind this result remains unknown, but might be explained by lower survival of inbred males or more complex inbreeding effects mediated by behaviour.Our study provides quantitative estimates of breeder bond duration in a social carnivore and highlights the effect of extrinsic (i.e. anthropogenic) and intrinsic factors (i.e. inbreeding) involved in wolf pair bond duration. Unlike the effects of intrinsic and extrinsic factors that are commonly reported on individual survival or population growth, here we provide quantitative estimates of their potential effect on the social unit of the population, the wolf pair.Few estimates of pair bond duration are available for social species, especially for carnivores. The authors found that wolf pair bond duration in Scandinavia was short (half of the dissolution events occurred after three consecutive winters), and dissolutions were mostly caused by humans. This shows the impact of extrinsic factors (i.e. humans) on the social unit of this large carnivore population.
      PubDate: 2016-09-28T03:32:06.434028-05:
      DOI: 10.1111/1365-2656.12587
  • Forbidden fruit: human settlement and abundant fruit create an ecological
           trap for an apex omnivore
    • Authors: Clayton T. Lamb; Garth Mowat, Bruce N. McLellan, Scott E. Nielsen, Stan Boutin
      Abstract: Habitat choice is an evolutionary product of animals experiencing increased fitness when preferentially occupying high-quality habitat. However, an ecological trap (ET) can occur when an animal is presented with novel conditions and the animal's assessment of habitat quality is poorly matched to its resulting fitness.We tested for an ET for grizzly (brown) bears using demographic and movement data collected in an area with rich food resources and concentrated human settlement.We derived measures of habitat attractiveness from occurrence models of bear food resources and estimated demographic parameters using DNA mark–recapture information collected over 8 years (2006–2013). We then paired this information with grizzly bear mortality records to investigate kill and movement rates.Our results demonstrate that a valley high in both berry resources and human density was more attractive than surrounding areas, and bears occupying this region faced 17% lower apparent survival. Despite lower fitness, we detected a net flow of bears into the ET, which contributed to a study-wide population decline.This work highlights the presence and pervasiveness of an ET for an apex omnivore that lacks the evolutionary cues, under human-induced rapid ecological change, to assess trade-offs between food resources and human-caused mortality, which results in maladaptive habitat selection.The authors tested for an ecological trap (ET) in south-east British Columbia where human settlement and rich grizzly bear habitat overlap. Bears occupying the ET faced survival consequences, which produced source–sink dynamics with far-reaching effects. To date, this is the most rigorous test of an ET for a large mammal.
      PubDate: 2016-09-28T00:00:02.394242-05:
      DOI: 10.1111/1365-2656.12589
  • Symbionts modify interactions between insects and natural enemies in the
    • Authors: Jan Hrček; Ailsa H. C. McLean, H. Charles J. Godfray
      Abstract: Eukaryotes commonly host communities of heritable symbiotic bacteria, many of which are not essential for their hosts' survival and reproduction. There is laboratory evidence that these facultative symbionts can provide useful adaptations, such as increased resistance to natural enemies. However, we do not know how symbionts affect host fitness when the latter are subject to attack by a natural suite of parasites and pathogens.Here, we test whether two protective symbionts, Regiella insecticola and Hamiltonella defensa, increase the fitness of their host, the pea aphid (Acyrthosiphon pisum), under natural conditions.We placed experimental populations of two pea aphid lines, each with and without symbionts, in five wet meadow sites to expose them to a natural assembly of enemy species. The aphids were then retrieved and mortality from parasitoids, fungal pathogens and other causes assessed.We found that both Regiella and Hamiltonella reduce the proportion of aphids killed by the specific natural enemies against which they have been shown to protect in laboratory and cage experiments. However, this advantage was nullified (Hamiltonella) or reversed (Regiella) by an increase in mortality from other natural enemies and by the cost of carrying the symbiont. Symbionts therefore affect community structure by altering the relative success of different natural enemies.Our results show that protective symbionts are not necessarily advantageous to their hosts, and may even behave more like parasites than mutualists. Nevertheless, bacterial symbionts may play an important role in determining food web structure and dynamics.Protective effects of microbial symbionts are known from laboratory studies, but little is known about how they affect host fitness in the field. The authors show that protective symbiosis does work in nature and can affect food web structure and dynamics. However, symbionts do not necessarily increase host fitness.
      PubDate: 2016-09-26T04:45:29.670625-05:
      DOI: 10.1111/1365-2656.12586
  • Masculinized females produce heavier offspring in a group living rodent
    • Authors: Loreto A. Correa; Cecilia León, Juan Ramírez-Estrada, Mauricio Soto-Gamboa, Roger D. Sepúlveda, Luis A. Ebensperger
      Abstract: Alternative morphotypes have been reported less frequently in females than in males. An exception to this rule is the gradient of phenotypical masculinization reported in some female mammals, in which feminized and masculinized females represent two opposite ends along this gradient. These phenotypical differences originate during prenatal development as the consequence of maternal effects. Feminized and masculinized females differ in several traits, including morphological, physiological, behavioural and reproductive traits.Differences previously reported in reproductive traits between feminized and masculinized females come mostly from mechanistic studies performed in the laboratory, and not necessarily on social species. As a result, it is unclear to what extent these reported differences between female alternative morphotypes materialize in wild, natural populations.We quantified the effect of female alternative morphotype on female reproductive traits in a natural population of Octodon degus, a highly social rodent. We assessed female alternative morphotype through a continuous gradient of anogenital distance. Thus, feminized females were close to the short end of anogenital distance, while masculinized females were close to the long end of this gradient. We also tested the hypothesis that the social environment interacts with female morphotype to influence female reproductive traits.In female degus, only body weight affected litter size, where heavier females weaned more offspring. Masculinized females delivered male-biased litters and weaned heavier offspring. Lastly, masculinized females gave birth later in the breeding season compared to feminized females.Contrary to previous claims, our findings do not support that masculinized females are less fertile than feminized females. Moreover, masculinized females produced heavier, potentially higher quality offspring compared with feminized females.Fertility did not differ between masculinized and feminized females and that masculinized females made a higher maternal investment during lactation, implying that masculinization does not significantly impair female reproductive performance as has been previously suggested. While the authors cannot currently posit that masculinized females are a superior morphotype, they can at least hypothesize that masculinized females are not a ‘pathological/suboptimum’ morphotype.
      PubDate: 2016-09-26T04:45:26.33359-05:0
      DOI: 10.1111/1365-2656.12588
  • Injecting epidemiology into population viability analysis: avian cholera
           transmission dynamics at an arctic seabird colony
    • Authors: Samuel A. Iverson; H. Grant Gilchrist, Catherine Soos, Isabel I. Buttler, N. Jane Harms, Mark R. Forbes
      Abstract: Infectious diseases have the potential to spread rapidly and cause high mortality within populations of immunologically naïve hosts. The recent appearance of avian cholera, a highly virulent disease of birds caused by the bacterium Pasteurella multocida, at remote Arctic seabird colonies is an emerging conservation concern.Determining disease risk to population viability requires a quantitative understanding of transmission potential and the factors that regulate epidemic persistence. Estimates of the basic (R0) and real-time (Rt) reproductive number are critical in this regard – enumerating the number of secondary infections caused by each primary infection in a newly invaded host population and the decline in transmission rate as susceptible individuals are removed via mortality or immunized recovery.Here, we use data collected at a closely monitored common eider (Somateria mollissima) breeding colony located in the Canadian Arctic to examine transmission and host population dynamics. Specifically, we infer epidemic curves from daily mortality observations and use a likelihood-based procedure to estimate changes in the reproductive number over a series of annual outbreaks. These data are interpreted in relation to concurrent changes in host numbers to assess local extinction risk.Consistent with expectations for a novel pathogen invasion, case incidence increased exponentially during the initial wave of exposure (R0 = 2·5; generation time = 6·5 days ± 1·1 SD). Disease conditions gradually abated, but only after several years of smouldering infection (Rt ≈ 1). In total, 6194 eider deaths were recorded during outbreaks spanning eight consecutive breeding seasons. Breeding pair abundance declined by 56% from the pre-outbreak peak; however, a robust population of >4000 pairs remained intact upon epidemic fade-out. Overall, outbreak patterns were consistent with herd immunity acting as a mitigating factor governing in the extent and duration of mortality.Disease mortality is frequently modelled as a form of stochastic catastrophe in wildlife population assessments, whereas our approach gives shape to the functional response between transmission and host population dynamics. We conclude that increased emphasis on integrating epidemiological and population processes is essential to predicting the conservation impact of emerging infectious diseases in wildlife.Emerging infectious diseases are a growing concern in wildlife conservation. This paper uses innovative methods developed for the real-time study of disease epidemics in humans and applies them to an Arctic seabird species experiencing a new series of highly virulent outbreaks of avian cholera to predict disease dynamics and assess the threat to population viability.
      PubDate: 2016-09-20T10:45:26.833225-05:
      DOI: 10.1111/1365-2656.12585
  • How individual Montagu's Harriers cope with Moreau's Paradox during the
           Sahelian winter
    • Authors: Almut Ellinor Schlaich; Raymond H. G. Klaassen, Willem Bouten, Vincent Bretagnolle, Ben Johannes Koks, Alexandre Villers, Christiaan Both
      Abstract: Hundreds of millions of Afro-Palaearctic migrants winter in the Sahel, a semi-arid belt south of the Sahara desert, where they experience deteriorating ecological conditions during their overwintering stay and have to prepare for spring migration when conditions are worst. This well-known phenomenon was first described by R.E. Moreau and is known ever since as Moreau's Paradox. However, empirical evidence of the deteriorating seasonal ecological conditions is limited and little is known on how birds respond.Montagu's Harriers Circus pygargus spend 6 months of the year in their wintering areas in the Sahel. Within the wintering season, birds move gradually to the south, visiting several distinct sites to which they are site-faithful in consecutive years. At the last wintering site, birds find themselves at the southern edge of the Sahelian zone and have no other options than facing deteriorating conditions.We tracked 36 Montagu's Harriers with GPS trackers to study their habitat use and behaviour during winter and collected data on the abundance of their main prey, grasshoppers, in Senegal. Since grasshopper abundance was positively related to vegetation greenness (measured as normalized difference vegetation index, NDVI), we used NDVI values as a proxy for prey abundance in areas where no field data were collected. Prey abundance (grasshopper counts and vegetation greenness) at wintering sites of Montagu's Harriers decreased during the wintering period.Montagu's Harriers responded to decreasing food availability by increasing their flight time during the second half of the winter. Individuals increased flight time more in areas with stronger declines in NDVI values, suggesting that lower food abundance required more intense foraging to achieve energy requirements. The apparent consequence was that Montagu's Harriers departed later in spring when their final wintering site had lower NDVI values and presumably lower food abundance and consequently arrived later at their breeding site.Our results confirmed the suggestions Moreau made 40 years ago: the late wintering period might be a bottleneck during the annual cycle with possible carry-over effects to the breeding season. Ongoing climate change with less rainfall in the Sahel region paired with increased human pressure on natural and agricultural habitats resulting in degradation and desertification is likely to make this period more demanding, which may negatively impact populations of migratory birds using the Sahel.Migrant birds wintering in the Sahel need to prepare for spring migration in dry conditions. GPS tracking of Montagu's Harriers shows that individuals increase their foraging effort in response to decreasing food availability. Individuals departed later from drier areas, suggesting carry-over effects of winter to breeding.
      PubDate: 2016-09-19T00:00:02.094751-05:
      DOI: 10.1111/1365-2656.12583
  • Modeling effects of nonbreeders on population growth estimates
    • Authors: Aline M. Lee; Jane M. Reid, Steven R. Beissinger
      Abstract: 1.Adult individuals that do not breed in a given year occur in a wide range of natural populations. However, such nonbreeders are often ignored in theoretical and empirical population studies, limiting our knowledge of how nonbreeders affect realized and estimated population dynamics and potentially impeding projection of deterministic and stochastic population growth rates.2.We present and analyze a general modeling framework for systems where breeders and nonbreeders differ in key demographic rates, incorporating different forms of nonbreeding, different life histories, and frequency-dependent effects of nonbreeders on demographic rates of breeders.3.Comparisons of estimates of deterministic population growth rate, λ, and demographic variance, σ2d, from models with and without distinct nonbreeder classes show that models that do not explicitly incorporate nonbreeders give upwardly biased estimates of σ2d, particularly when the equilibrium ratio of nonbreeders to breeders, N*nb/N*b, is high. Estimates of λ from empirical observations of breeders only are substantially inflated when individuals frequently re-enter the breeding population after periods of nonbreeding.4.Sensitivity analyses of diverse parameterizations of our model framework, with and without negative frequency-dependent effects of nonbreeders on breeder demographic rates, show how changes in demographic rates of breeders versus nonbreeders differentially affect λ. In particular, λ is most sensitive to nonbreeder parameters in long-lived species, when N*nb/N*b > 0, and when individuals are unlikely to breed at several consecutive time steps.5.Our results demonstrate that failing to account for nonbreeders in population studies can obscure low population growth rates that should cause management concern. Quantifying the size and demography of the nonbreeding section of populations and modeling appropriate demographic structuring is therefore essential to evaluate nonbreeders’ influence on deterministic and stochastic population dynamics.This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.
      PubDate: 2016-09-14T04:50:57.949622-05:
      DOI: 10.1111/1365-2656.12592
  • Intra-specific competition, not predation, drives lizard tail loss on
    • Authors: Yuval Itescu; Rachel Schwarz, Shai Meiri, Panayiotis Pafilis
      Abstract: Tail autotomy is mainly considered an anti-predator mechanism. Theory suggests predation pressure relaxes on islands, subsequently reducing autotomy rates. Intra-specific aggression, which may also cause tail loss, probably intensifies on islands due to the higher abundance. We studied whether tail autotomy is mostly affected by predation pressure or by intra-specific competition. We further studied whether predator abundance or predator richness is more important in this context.To test our predictions we examined multiple populations of two gecko species: Kotschy's gecko (Mediodactylus kotschyi; mainland and 41 islands) and the Mediterranean house gecko (Hemidactylus turcicus; mainland and 17 islands), and estimated their abundances together with five indices of predation.In both species autotomy rates are higher on islands and decline with most predation indices, in contrast with common wisdom, and increase with gecko abundance. In M. kotschyi tail loss rates are higher on predator and viper-free islands, but increase with viper abundance. We suggest that autotomy is not simply, or maybe even mainly, an anti-predatory mechanism. Rather, such defense mechanisms are a response to complex direct and indirect biotic interactions and perhaps, in the case of tail autotomy in insular populations, chiefly to intra-specific aggression.This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.
      PubDate: 2016-09-14T02:10:31.070689-05:
      DOI: 10.1111/1365-2656.12591
  • Interspecific interference competition at the resource patch scale: do
           large herbivores spatially avoid elephants while accessing water?
    • Authors: Nicolas Ferry; Stéphane Dray, Hervé Fritz, Marion Valeix
      Abstract: Animals may anticipate and try to avoid, at some costs, physical encounters with other competitors. This may ultimately impact their foraging distribution and intake rates. Such cryptic interference competition is difficult to measure in the field, and extremely little is known at the interspecific level.We tested the hypothesis that smaller species avoid larger ones because of potential costs of interference competition and hence expected them to segregate from larger competitors at the scale of a resource patch. We assessed fine-scale spatial segregation patterns between three African herbivore species (zebra Equus quagga, kudu Tragelaphus strepsiceros and giraffe Giraffa camelopardalis) and a megaherbivore, the African elephant Loxodonta africana, at the scale of water resource patches in the semi-arid ecosystem of Hwange National Park, Zimbabwe.Nine waterholes were monitored every two weeks during the dry season of a drought year, and observational scans of the spatial distribution of all herbivores were performed every 15 min. We developed a methodological approach to analyse such fine-scale spatial data.Elephants increasingly used waterholes as the dry season progressed, as did the probability of co-occurrence and agonistic interaction with elephants for the three study species. All three species segregated from elephants at the beginning of the dry season, suggesting a spatial avoidance of elephants and the existence of costs of being close to them. However, contrarily to our expectations, herbivores did not segregate from elephants the rest of the dry season but tended to increasingly aggregate with elephants as the dry season progressed.We discuss these surprising results and the existence of a trade-off between avoidance of interspecific interference competition and other potential factors such as access to quality water, which may have relative associated costs that change with the time of the year.Developing a new methodological approach, the authors show how spatial patterns of animal distributions at a resource-patch scale provide useful insights into the potential costs of interspecific interference competition. Considering a large temporal window in a seasonal ecosystem, the authors suggest mechanisms which are likely to be important for animal communities functioning.
      PubDate: 2016-09-13T04:21:34.683371-05:
      DOI: 10.1111/1365-2656.12582
  • Nematode parasite diversity in birds: the role of host ecology, life
           history and migration
    • Authors: Tommy L. F. Leung; Janet Koprivnikar
      Abstract: Previous studies have found that migratory birds generally have a more diverse array of pathogens such as parasites, as well as higher intensities of infection. However, it is not clear whether this is driven by the metabolic and physiological demands of migration, differential selection on host life-history traits or basic ecological differences between migratory and non-migratory species.Parasitic helminths can cause significant pathology in their hosts, and many are trophically transmitted such that host diet and habitat use play key roles in the acquisition of infections. Given the concurrent changes in avian habitats and migratory behaviour, it is critical to understand the degree to which host ecology influences their parasite communities.We examined nematode parasite diversity in 153 species of Anseriformes (water birds) and Accipitriformes (predatory birds) in relation to their migratory behaviour, diet, habitat use, geographic distribution and life history using previously published data.Overall, migrators, host species with wide geographic distributions and those utilizing multiple aquatic habitats had greater nematode richness (number of species), and birds with large clutches harboured more diverse nematode fauna with respect to number of superfamilies. Separate analyses for each host order found similar results related to distribution, habitat use and migration; however, herbivorous water birds played host to a less diverse nematode community compared to those that consume some animals.Birds using multiple aquatic habitats have a more diverse nematode fauna relative to primarily terrestrial species, likely because there is greater opportunity for contact with parasite infectious stages and/or consumption of infected hosts. As such, omnivorous and carnivorous birds using aquatic habitats may be more affected by environmental changes that alter their diet and range. Even though there were no overall differences in their ecology and life history compared with non-migrators, migratory bird species still harboured a more diverse array of nematodes, suggesting that this behaviour places unique demands on these hosts and warrants further study.The authors provide the first large-scale demonstration of the greater challenge by macroparasites for migratory birds regardless of their ecology and life history, as well as host species with large geographic distributions, multiple aquatic habitat use, and animal consumption. These might be more affected by anthropogenic changes altering diet and range.
      PubDate: 2016-09-12T10:30:35.713153-05:
      DOI: 10.1111/1365-2656.12581
  • Geographic variation and trade-offs in parasitoid virulence
    • Authors: Lisa Fors; Robert Markus, Ulrich Theopold, Lars Ericson, Peter A. Hambäck
      Abstract: Host–parasitoid systems are characterized by a continuous development of new defence strategies in hosts and counter-defence mechanisms in parasitoids. This co-evolutionary arms race makes host–parasitoid systems excellent for understanding trade-offs in host use caused by evolutionary changes in host immune responses and parasitoid virulence. However, knowledge obtained from natural host–parasitoid systems on such trade-offs is still limited.In this study, the aim was to examine trade-offs in parasitoid virulence in Asecodes parviclava (Hymenoptera: Eulophidae) when attacking three closely related beetles: Galerucella pusilla, Galerucella calmariensis and Galerucella tenella (Coleoptera: Chrysomelidae). A second aim was to examine whether geographic variation in parasitoid infectivity or host immune response could explain differences in parasitism rate between northern and southern sites.More specifically, we wanted to examine whether the capacity to infect host larvae differed depending on the previous host species of the parasitoids and if such differences were connected to differences in the induction of host immune systems. This was achieved by combining controlled parasitism experiments with cytological studies of infected larvae.Our results reveal that parasitism success in A. parviclava differs both depending on previous and current host species, with a higher virulence when attacking larvae of the same species as the previous host. Virulence was in general high for parasitoids from G. pusilla and low for parasitoids from G. calmariensis. At the same time, G. pusilla larvae had the strongest immune response and G. calmariensis the weakest. These observations were linked to changes in the larval hemocyte composition, showing changes in cell types important for the encapsulation process in individuals infected by more or less virulent parasitoids.These findings suggest ongoing evolution in parasitoid virulence and host immune response, making the system a strong candidate for further studies on host race formation and speciation.This study examines trade-offs in parasitoid virulence in a hymenopteran attacking three closely related beetles, revealing a higher parasitism success when infecting larvae of the same species as the previous host. These observations are linked to changes in the larval hemocyte composition when infected by more or less virulent parasitoids.
      PubDate: 2016-09-12T05:41:01.167228-05:
      DOI: 10.1111/1365-2656.12579
  • Cascading effects of defaunation on the coexistence of two specialized
           insect seed predators
    • Authors: Guille Peguero; Helene C. Muller-Landau, Patrick A. Jansen, S. Joseph Wright
      Abstract: Identification of the mechanisms enabling stable coexistence of species with similar resource requirements is a central challenge in ecology. Such coexistence can be facilitated by species at higher trophic levels through complex multi-trophic interactions, a mechanism that could be compromised by ongoing defaunation.We investigated cascading effects of defaunation on Pachymerus cardo and Speciomerus giganteus, the specialized insect seed predators of the Neotropical palm Attalea butyracea, testing the hypothesis that vertebrate frugivores and granivores facilitate their coexistence.Lab experiments showed that the two seed parasitoid species differed strongly in their reproductive ecology. Pachymerus produced many small eggs that it deposited exclusively on the fruit exocarp (exterior). Speciomerus produced few large eggs that it deposited exclusively on the endocarp, which is normally exposed only after a vertebrate handles the fruit. When eggs of the two species were deposited on the same fruit, Pachymerus triumphed only when it had a long head start, and the loser always succumbed to intraguild predation.We collected field data on the fates of 6569 Attalea seeds across sites in central Panama with contrasting degrees of defaunation and wide variation in the abundance of vertebrate frugivores and granivores. Speciomerus dominated where vertebrate communities were intact, whereas Pachymerus dominated in defaunated sites. Variation in the relative abundance of Speciomerus across all 84 sampling sites was strongly positively related with the proportion of seeds attacked by rodents, an indicator of local vertebrate abundance.Synthesis: We show that two species of insect seed predators relying on the same host plant species are niche differentiated in their reproductive strategies such that one species has the advantage when fruits are handled promptly by vertebrates and the other when they aren't. Defaunation disrupts this mediating influence of vertebrates and strongly favors one species at the expense of the other, providing a case study of the cascading effects of defaunation and its potential to disrupt coexistence of non-target species, including the hyperdiverse phytophagous insects of tropical forests.This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.
      PubDate: 2016-09-09T11:01:40.388212-05:
      DOI: 10.1111/1365-2656.12590
  • Patterns of age-related change in reproductive effort differ in the
           pre-natal and post-natal periods in a long-lived mammal
    • Authors: John T. Paterson; Jay J. Rotella, Jennifer M. Mannas, Robert A. Garrott
      Abstract: Age-related changes in maternal reproductive allocation for long-lived species are a key prediction from life-history theory.Theoretical and empirical work suggests that allocation may increase with age due to constraint (increases with experience) or restraint (increases with age in the face of declining residual reproductive value), and may decrease among the oldest aged animals due to senescence in reproductive function.Here, we use a hierarchical modelling approach to investigate the age-related patterns of change in maternal reproductive effort in the Weddell seal, a long-lived marine mammal with a protracted period of maternal care during which mothers allocate a large proportion of body mass while feeding little.We find that maternal allocation increases with age for young mothers during both the pre-natal and post-natal periods. In contrast, older mothers demonstrate a senescent decline in pre-natal allocation but allocate more of their declining resources to their offspring during the post-natal period. We also find strong evidence for the importance of individual effects in reproductive allocation among mothers: some mothers consistently produce heavier (or lighter) pups than expected.Our results indicate that maternal allocation changes over a mother's reproductive life span and that age-specific differences differ in notable ways in pre-natal and post-natal periods.The authors demonstrate that the pattern of reproductive energy allocation with age and maternal characteristics is markedly different in the pre-natal and post-natal phases of maternal care in a long-lived mammal. This has implications for the study of age-related patterns of reproductive effort insofar as the pattern depends on the trait measured.
      PubDate: 2016-09-07T03:35:28.739958-05:
      DOI: 10.1111/1365-2656.12577
  • Carry-over effects on the annual cycle of a migratory seabird: an
           experimental study
    • Authors: Annette L. Fayet; Robin Freeman, Akiko Shoji, Holly L. Kirk, Oliver Padget, Chris M. Perrins, Tim Guilford
      Abstract: Long-lived migratory animals must balance the cost of current reproduction with their own condition ahead of a challenging migration and future reproduction. In these species, carry-over effects, which occur when events in one season affect the outcome of the subsequent season, may be particularly exacerbated. However, how carry-over effects influence future breeding outcomes and whether (and how) they also affect behaviour during migration and wintering is unclear.Here we investigate carry-over effects induced by a controlled, bidirectional manipulation of the duration of reproductive effort on the migratory, wintering and subsequent breeding behaviour of a long-lived migratory seabird, the Manx shearwater Puffinus puffinus. By cross-fostering chicks of different age between nests, we successfully prolonged or shortened by ∼25% the chick-rearing period of 42 breeding pairs. We tracked the adults with geolocators over the subsequent year and combined migration route data with at-sea activity budgets obtained from high-resolution saltwater-immersion data. Migratory behaviour was also recorded during non-experimental years (the year before and/or two years after manipulation) for a subset of birds, allowing comparison between experimental and non-experimental years within treatment groups.All birds cared for chicks until normal fledging age, resulting in birds with a longer breeding period delaying their departure on migration; however, birds that finished breeding earlier did not start migrating earlier. Increased reproductive effort resulted in less time spent at the wintering grounds, a reduction in time spent resting daily and a delayed start of breeding with lighter eggs and chicks and lower breeding success the following breeding season. Conversely, reduced reproductive effort resulted in more time resting and less time foraging during the winter, but a similar breeding phenology and success compared with control birds the following year, suggesting that ‘positive’ carry-over effects may also occur but perhaps have a less long-lasting impact than those incurred from increased reproductive effort.Our results shed light on how carry-over effects can develop and modify an adult animal's behaviour year-round and reveal how a complex interaction between current and future reproductive fitness, individual condition and external constraints can influence life-history decisions.Increasing or decreasing reproductive effort in migratory birds in a controlled experiment results in oppositely directed carry-over effects, affecting migratory and wintering behaviour, and future breeding performance. This study helps understand how carry-over effects develop and affect the annual cycle of long-lived migratory animals, a central question in life-history theory.
      PubDate: 2016-08-31T00:00:04.521162-05:
      DOI: 10.1111/1365-2656.12580
  • The ontogeny of tolerance curves: habitat quality vs. acclimation in a
           stressful environment
    • Authors: Odrade Nougué; Nils Svendsen, Roula Jabbour-Zahab, Thomas Lenormand, Luis-Miguel Chevin
      Abstract: Stressful environments affect life-history components of fitness through (i) instantaneous detrimental effects, (ii) historical (carry-over) effects and (iii) history-by-environment interactions, including acclimation effects. The relative contributions of these different responses to environmental stress are likely to change along life, but such ontogenic perspective is often overlooked in studies of tolerance curves, precluding a better understanding of the causes of costs of acclimation, and more generally of fitness in temporally fine-grained environments.We performed an experiment in the brine shrimp Artemia to disentangle these different contributions to environmental tolerance, and investigate how they unfold along life. We placed individuals from three clones of A. parthenogenetica over a range of salinities during a week, before transferring them to a (possibly) different salinity for the rest of their lives. We monitored individual survival at repeated intervals throughout life, instead of measuring survival or performance at a given point in time, as commonly done in acclimation experiments. We then designed a modified survival analysis model to estimate phase-specific hazard rates, accounting for the fact that individuals may share the same treatment for only part of their lives.Our approach allowed us to distinguish effects of salinity on (i) instantaneous mortality in each phase (habitat quality effects), (ii) mortality later in life (history effects) and (iii) their interaction. We showed clear effects of early salinity on late survival and interactions between effects of past and current environments on survival. Importantly, analysis of the ontogenetic dynamics of the tolerance curve reveals that acclimation affects different parts of the curve at different ages.Adopting a dynamical view of the ontogeny of tolerance curve should prove useful for understanding niche limits in temporally changing environments, where the full sequence of environments experienced by an individual determines its overall environmental tolerance, and how it changes throughout life.Environmental tolerance curves are broadly used to characterize fundamental niches, but ontogenic aspects of these curves are generally overlooked. Using an acclimation experiment and a modified survival analysis, the authors analyze how tolerance curves unfold along life, and show that treatments affect different parts of these curves at different ages.
      PubDate: 2016-08-30T08:35:35.620042-05:
      DOI: 10.1111/1365-2656.12572
  • Hunting promotes sexual conflict in brown bears
    • Authors: Jacinthe Gosselin; Martin Leclerc, Andreas Zedrosser, Sam M. J. G. Steyaert, Jon E. Swenson, Fanie Pelletier
      Abstract: The removal of individuals through hunting can destabilize social structure, potentially affecting population dynamics. Although previous studies have shown that hunting can indirectly reduce juvenile survival through increased sexually selected infanticide (SSI), very little is known about the spatiotemporal effects of male hunting on juvenile survival.Using detailed individual monitoring of a hunted population of brown bears (Ursus arctos) in Sweden (1991–2011), we assessed the spatiotemporal effect of male removal on cub survival.We modelled cub survival before, during and after the mating season. We used three proxies to evaluate spatial and temporal variation in male turnover; distance and timing of the closest male killed and number of males that died around a female's home range centre.Male removal decreased cub survival only during the mating season, as expected in seasonal breeders with SSI. Cub survival increased with distance to the closest male killed within the previous 1·5 years, and it was lower when the closest male killed was removed 1·5 instead of 0·5 year earlier. We did not detect an effect of the number of males killed.Our results support the hypothesis that social restructuring due to hunting can reduce recruitment and suggest that the distribution of the male deaths might be more important than the overall number of males that die. As the removal of individuals through hunting is typically not homogenously distributed across the landscape, spatial heterogeneity in hunting pressure may cause source–sink dynamics, with lower recruitment in areas of high human-induced mortality.The authors explored detailed spatiotemporal effects of male hunting on juvenile survival in brown bears, a species with sexually selected infanticide. The distribution of kills might be more important for juvenile survival than the number of males killed. Thus, reducing harvest intensity might not always increase population growth.
      PubDate: 2016-08-30T08:35:33.021489-05:
      DOI: 10.1111/1365-2656.12576
  • Direct and indirect genetic and fine-scale location effects on breeding
           date in song sparrows
    • Authors: Ryan R. Germain; Matthew E. Wolak, Peter Arcese, Sylvain Losdat, Jane M. Reid
      Abstract: Quantifying direct and indirect genetic effects of interacting females and males on variation in jointly expressed life-history traits is central to predicting microevolutionary dynamics. However, accurately estimating sex-specific additive genetic variances in such traits remains difficult in wild populations, especially if related individuals inhabit similar fine-scale environments.Breeding date is a key life-history trait that responds to environmental phenology and mediates individual and population responses to environmental change. However, no studies have estimated female (direct) and male (indirect) additive genetic and inbreeding effects on breeding date, and estimated the cross-sex genetic correlation, while simultaneously accounting for fine-scale environmental effects of breeding locations, impeding prediction of microevolutionary dynamics.We fitted animal models to 38 years of song sparrow (Melospiza melodia) phenology and pedigree data to estimate sex-specific additive genetic variances in breeding date, and the cross-sex genetic correlation, thereby estimating the total additive genetic variance while simultaneously estimating sex-specific inbreeding depression. We further fitted three forms of spatial animal model to explicitly estimate variance in breeding date attributable to breeding location, overlap among breeding locations and spatial autocorrelation. We thereby quantified fine-scale location variances in breeding date and quantified the degree to which estimating such variances affected the estimated additive genetic variances.The non-spatial animal model estimated nonzero female and male additive genetic variances in breeding date (sex-specific heritabilities: 0·07 and 0·02, respectively) and a strong, positive cross-sex genetic correlation (0·99), creating substantial total additive genetic variance (0·18). Breeding date varied with female, but not male inbreeding coefficient, revealing direct, but not indirect, inbreeding depression. All three spatial animal models estimated small location variance in breeding date, but because relatedness and breeding location were virtually uncorrelated, modelling location variance did not alter the estimated additive genetic variances.Our results show that sex-specific additive genetic effects on breeding date can be strongly positively correlated, which would affect any predicted rates of microevolutionary change in response to sexually antagonistic or congruent selection. Further, we show that inbreeding effects on breeding date can also be sex specific and that genetic effects can exceed phenotypic variation stemming from fine-scale location-based variation within a wild population.The authors used 38 years of songbird data to estimate sex-specific additive genetic variances (VA) in breeding date while accounting for fine-scale location-based variance (VLoc). They found significant sex-specific VA, a strongly positive cross-sex genetic correlation and that modelling VLoc did not alter estimated VA when relatives breed in separate locations.
      PubDate: 2016-08-30T08:35:25.892133-05:
      DOI: 10.1111/1365-2656.12575
  • Co-infections and environmental conditions drive the distributions of
           blood parasites in wild birds
    • Authors: Nicholas J. Clark; Konstans Wells, Dimitar Dimitrov, Sonya M. Clegg
      Abstract: Experimental work increasingly suggests that non-random pathogen associations can affect the spread or severity of disease. Yet due to difficulties distinguishing and interpreting co-infections, evidence for the presence and directionality of pathogen co-occurrences in wildlife is rudimentary.We provide empirical evidence for pathogen co-occurrences by analysing infection matrices for avian malaria (Haemoproteus and Plasmodium spp.) and parasitic filarial nematodes (microfilariae) in wild birds (New Caledonian Zosterops spp.).Using visual and genus-specific molecular parasite screening, we identified high levels of co-infections that would have been missed using PCR alone. Avian malaria lineages were assigned to species level using morphological descriptions. We estimated parasite co-occurrence probabilities, while accounting for environmental predictors, in a hierarchical multivariate logistic regression.Co-infections occurred in 36% of infected birds. We identified both positively and negatively correlated parasite co-occurrence probabilities when accounting for host, habitat and island effects. Two of three pairwise avian malaria co-occurrences were strongly negative, despite each malaria parasite occurring across all islands and habitats. Birds with microfilariae had elevated heterophil to lymphocyte ratios and were all co-infected with avian malaria, consistent with evidence that host immune modulation by parasitic nematodes facilitates malaria co-infections. Importantly, co-occurrence patterns with microfilariae varied in direction among avian malaria species; two malaria parasites correlated positively but a third correlated negatively with microfilariae.We show that wildlife co-infections are frequent, possibly affecting infection rates through competition or facilitation. We argue that combining multiple diagnostic screening methods with multivariate logistic regression offers a platform to disentangle impacts of environmental factors and parasite co-occurrences on wildlife disease.Parasite competition and facilitation are expected to occur across many host systems, yet evidence from wildlife is limited and strongly biased towards mammal hosts. Using hierarchical multivariate modelling, the authors show that interspecific parasite interactions are common and may be important drivers of blood parasite distributions in wild avian hosts.
      PubDate: 2016-08-26T03:15:30.170192-05:
      DOI: 10.1111/1365-2656.12578
  • Elevation and latitude interact to drive life-history variation in
           precocial birds: a comparative analysis using galliformes
    • Authors: Priya Balasubramaniam; John T. Rotenberry
      Abstract: Elevational gradients provide a powerful laboratory for understanding the environmental and ecological drivers of geographic variation in avian life-history strategies. Environmental variation across elevational gradients is hypothesized to select for a trade-off of reduced fecundity (lower clutch size and/or fewer broods) for higher offspring quality (larger eggs and/or increased parental care) in higher elevation species and populations. In birds, a focus on altricial species from north temperate latitudes has prevented an evaluation of the generality of this trade-off, and how it is affected by latitude and intrinsic factors (development mode).We performed a comparative analysis controlling for body size and phylogenetic relationships on a global data set of 135 galliform species to test (i) whether higher elevation precocial species have lower fecundity (smaller clutch and/or fewer broods) and invest more in offspring quality (greater egg mass) and (ii) whether latitude influences the traits involved and/or the trade-off, and (iii) to identify ecological and environmental drivers of life-history variation along elevational gradients.Life-history traits showed significant interaction effects across elevation and latitude: temperate higher elevation species had smaller clutches and clutch mass, larger eggs and shorter incubation periods, whereas more tropical species had larger clutches, eggs and clutch mass, and longer incubation periods as elevation increased. Number of broods and body mass did not vary with elevation or latitude. Latitudinal gradient in clutch size was observed only for low-elevation species.Significantly, an overlooked latitude-by-elevation interaction confounds our traditional view of clutch size variation across a tropical-to-temperate gradient. Across all latitudes, higher elevation species invested in offspring quality via larger eggs but support for reduced fecundity resulting from smaller clutches was found only along temperate elevational gradients; contrary to expectations, tropical high-elevation species showed increased fecundity. Variation in nest predation risk could explain differences between temperate and tropical elevational gradients, but we lack a consistent mechanism to explain why predation risk should vary in this manner. Alternatively, a resource availability hypothesis based on physical attributes that globally differ between elevation and latitude (seasonality in day length and temperature) seems more plausible.For the first time, using precocial species the authors show that elevation and latitude interact to drive avian life-history variation and the well-known latitudinal gradient in clutch size is limited to low-elevation species. Results support the fecundity vs. offspring quality trade-off at higher elevations in temperate latitudes across different developmental modes.
      PubDate: 2016-08-18T08:10:25.661844-05:
      DOI: 10.1111/1365-2656.12570
  • Mammalian engineers drive soil microbial communities and ecosystem
           functions across a disturbance gradient
    • Authors: David J. Eldridge; Manuel Delgado-Baquerizo, Jason N. Woodhouse, Brett A. Neilan
      Abstract: The effects of mammalian ecosystem engineers on soil microbial communities and ecosystem functions in terrestrial ecosystems are poorly known. Disturbance from livestock has been widely reported to reduce soil function, but disturbance by animals that forage in the soil may partially offset these negative effects of livestock, directly and/or indirectly by shifting the composition and diversity of soil microbial communities. Understanding the role of disturbance from livestock and ecosystem engineers in driving soil microbes and functions is essential for formulating sustainable ecosystem management and conservation policies.We compared soil bacterial community composition and enzyme concentrations within four microsites: foraging pits of two vertebrates, the indigenous short-beaked echidna (Tachyglossus aculeatus) and the exotic European rabbit (Oryctolagus cuniculus), and surface and subsurface soils along a gradient in grazing-induced disturbance in an arid woodland.Microbial community composition varied little across the disturbance gradient, but there were substantial differences among the four microsites. Echidna pits supported a lower relative abundance of Acidobacteria and Cyanobacteria, but a higher relative abundance of Proteobacteria than rabbit pits and surface microsites. Moreover, these microsite differences varied with disturbance. Rabbit pits had a similar profile to the subsoil or the surface soils under moderate and high, but not low disturbance.Overall, echidna foraging pits had the greatest positive effect on function, assessed as mean enzyme concentrations, but rabbits had the least. The positive effects of echidna foraging on function were indirectly driven via microbial community composition. In particular, increasing activity was positively associated with increasing relative abundance of Proteobacteria, but decreasing Acidobacteria.Our study suggests that soil disturbance by animals may offset, to some degree, the oft-reported negative effects of grazing-induced disturbance on soil function. Further, our results suggest that most of this effect will be derived from echidnas, with little positive effects due to rabbits. Activities that enhance the habitat for echidnas or reduce rabbit populations are likely to have a positive effect on soil function in these systems.This study highlights the links between the activity of two mammals and ecosystem function in drylands. Animal disturbance alters microbial composition, markedly altering both soil enzymes and therefore ecosystem functioning. These data show that the effects on function are positive for the native echidna but negative for the exotic rabbit.
      PubDate: 2016-08-18T05:45:31.241607-05:
      DOI: 10.1111/1365-2656.12574
  • Multihost Bartonella parasites display covert host specificity even when
           transmitted by generalist vectors
    • Authors: Susan M. Withenshaw; Godefroy Devevey, Amy B. Pedersen, Andy Fenton
      Abstract: Many parasites infect multiple sympatric host species, and there is a general assumption that parasite transmission between co-occurring host species is commonplace. Such between-species transmission could be key to parasite persistence within a disease reservoir and is consequently an emerging focus for disease control.However, while a growing body of theory indicates the potential importance of between-species transmission for parasite persistence, conclusive empirical evidence from natural communities is lacking, and the assumption that between-species transmission is inevitable may therefore be wrong.We investigated the occurrence of between-species transmission in a well-studied multihost parasite system. We identified the flea-borne Bartonella parasites infecting sympatric populations of Apodemus sylvaticus (wood mice) and Myodes glareolus (bank voles) in the UK and confirmed that several Bartonella species infect both rodent species. However, counter to previous knowledge, genetic characterization of these parasites revealed covert host specificity, where each host species is associated with a distinct assemblage of genetic variants, indicating that between-species transmission is rare.Limited between-species transmission could result from rare encounters between one host species and the parasites infecting another and/or host–parasite incompatibility. We investigated the occurrence of such encounter and compatibility barriers by identifying the flea species associated with each rodent host, and the Bartonella variants carried by individual fleas. We found that the majority of fleas were host-generalists but the assemblage of Bartonella variants in fleas tended to reflect the assemblage of Bartonella variants in the host species they were collected from, thus providing evidence of encounter barriers mediated by limited between-species flea transfer. However, we also found several fleas that were carrying variants never found in the host species from which they were collected, indicating some degree of host–pathogen incompatibility when barriers to encounter are overcome.Overall, these findings challenge our default perceptions of multihost parasite persistence, as they show that despite considerable overlaps in host species ecology, separate populations of the same parasite species may circulate and persist independently in different sympatric host species. This questions our fundamental understanding of endemic transmission dynamics and the control of infection within natural reservoir communities.Where sympatric species are infected by the same parasite, transmission between host species is often assumed. The authors challenge this, showing that transmission of flea-borne bacteria between sympatric species of wild rodents is rare, which likely results from a combination of limited between-species transfer of generalist vectors and host–parasite incompatibility.
      PubDate: 2016-08-16T10:00:25.925233-05:
      DOI: 10.1111/1365-2656.12568
  • Consistent scaling of population structure across landscapes despite
           intraspecific variation in movement and connectivity
    • Authors: Brian E. Reichert; Robert J. Fletcher, Christopher E. Cattau, Wiley M. Kitchens
      Abstract: Understanding the spatial scale of population structure is fundamental to long-standing tenets of population biology, landscape ecology and conservation. Nonetheless, identifying such scales has been challenging because a key factor that influences scaling – movement among patches or local populations – is a multicausal process with substantial phenotypic and temporal variation.We resolve this problem via a novel application of network modularity. When applied to movements, modularity provides a formal description of the functional aggregation of populations and identifies potentially critical scales for ecological and evolutionary dynamics. We first test for modularity using several different types of biologically relevant movements across the entire geographic range of an endangered bird, the snail kite (Rostrhamus sociabilis plumbeus). We then ask whether variation in movement based on (i) age, (ii) sex and (iii) time (annual, seasonal and within-season movements) influences spatial population structure (i.e. modularity) in snail kites.We identified significant modularity in annual dispersal of snail kites (all adults, males only, females only, and juveniles only) and in within-breeding season movements of adults, yet no evidence of modularity in seasonal (non-breeding) movements. For those movements with observed modular structure, we found striking similarities in the spatial configuration of population structure, even though movement properties varied considerably among these different types of movements.Our results suggest that the emergence of modularity in population networks can be robust despite movement heterogeneity and differences in patch-based measures of connectivity. Furthermore, our comparison of the population structure and connectivity across multiple movement phases helps to identify wetland patches most critical to population connectivity at multiple spatiotemporal scales.We argue that understanding modularity in populations may provide a robust complement to existing measures of population structure and connectivity and will help to clarify the limiting roles of movement for populations. Such information is increasingly needed for interpreting population persistence and guiding effective conservation strategies with ongoing environmental change.Spatial scales of population structure are challenging to identify because of phenotypic and temporal variation in movements. Using network modularity, the authors test for variation in structure and connectivity among different types of movements of an endangered bird. The results suggest that population structure can be robust despite movement heterogeneity.
      PubDate: 2016-08-15T03:50:27.417822-05:
      DOI: 10.1111/1365-2656.12571
  • High adult mortality in disease-challenged frog populations increases
           vulnerability to drought
    • Authors: Ben C. Scheele; David A. Hunter, Sam C. Banks, Jennifer C. Pierson, Lee F. Skerratt, Rebecca Webb, Don A. Driscoll
      Abstract: Pathogen emergence can drive major changes in host population demography, with implications for population dynamics and sensitivity to environmental fluctuations. The amphibian disease chytridiomycosis, caused by infection with the fungal pathogen Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis (Bd), is implicated in the severe decline of over 200 amphibian species. In species that have declined but not become extinct, Bd persists and can cause substantial ongoing mortality. High rates of mortality associated with Bd may drive major changes in host demography, but this process is poorly understood.Here, we compared population age structure of Bd-infected populations, Bd-free populations and museum specimens collected prior to Bd emergence for the endangered Australian frog, Litoria verreauxii alpina (alpine tree frog). We then used population simulations to investigate how pathogen-associated demographic shifts affect the ability of populations to persist in stochastic environments.We found that Bd-infected populations have a severely truncated age structure associated with very high rates of annual adult mortality. Near-complete annual adult turnover in Bd-infected populations means that individuals breed once, compared with Bd-free populations where adults may breed across multiple years.Our simulations showed that truncated age structure erodes the capacity of populations to withstand periodic recruitment failure; a common challenge for species reproducing in uncertain environments.We document previously undescribed demographic shifts associated with a globally emerging pathogen and demonstrate how these shifts alter host ecology. Truncation of age structure associated with Bd effectively reduces host niche width and can help explain the contraction of L. v. alpina to perennial waterbodies where the risk of drought-induced recruitment failure is low. Reduced capacity to tolerate other sources of mortality may explain variation in decline severity among other chytridiomycosis-challenged species and highlights the potential to mitigate disease impacts through minimizing other sources of mortality.This paper provides new insights into how the disease chytridiomycosis impacts amphibian demography and ecology. The authors show that the disease is associated with the truncation of adult age structure. Loss of individuals capable of reproducing across multiple years effectively reduces niche breadth through reduced capacity to tolerate recruitment failure.
      PubDate: 2016-08-15T03:35:31.189115-05:
      DOI: 10.1111/1365-2656.12569
  • Genetic mixture of multiple source populations accelerates invasive range
    • Authors: Natalie K. Wagner; Brad M. Ochocki, Kerri M. Crawford, Aldo Compagnoni, Tom E.X. Miller
      Abstract: A wealth of population genetic studies have documented that many successful biological invasions stem from multiple introductions from genetically distinct source populations. Yet, mechanistic understanding of whether and how genetic mixture promotes invasiveness has lagged behind documentation that such mixture commonly occurs. We conducted a laboratory experiment to test the influence of genetic mixture on the velocity of invasive range expansion.The mechanistic basis for effects of genetic mixture could include evolutionary responses (mixed invasions may harbour greater genetic diversity and thus elevated evolutionary potential) and/or fitness advantages of between-population mating (heterosis). If driven by evolution, positive effects of source population mixture should increase through time, as selection sculpts genetic variation. If driven by heterosis, effects of mixture should peak following first reproductive contact and then dissipate.Using a laboratory model system (beetles spreading through artificial landscapes), we quantified the velocity of range expansion for invasions initiated with one, two, four or six genetic sources over six generations. Our experiment was designed to test predictions corresponding to the evolutionary and heterosis mechanisms, asking whether any effects of genetic mixture occurred in early or later generations of range expansion. We also quantified demography and dispersal for each experimental treatment, since any effects of mixture should be manifest in one or both of these traits.Over six generations, invasions with any amount of genetic mixture (two, four and six sources) spread farther than single-source invasions. Our data suggest that heterosis provided a ‘catapult effect’, leaving a lasting signature on range expansion even though the benefits of outcrossing were transient. Individual-level trait data indicated that genetic mixture had positive effects on local demography (reduced extinction risk and enhanced population growth) during the initial stages of invasion but no consistent effects on dispersal ability.Our work is the first to demonstrate that genetic mixture can alter the course of spatial expansion, the stage of invasion typically associated with the greatest ecological and economic impacts. We suggest that similar effects of genetic mixture may be a common feature of biological invasions in nature, but that these effects can easily go undetected.Genetic mixture of multiple source populations can catapult the spread of biological invasions.
      PubDate: 2016-08-08T10:22:21.413438-05:
      DOI: 10.1111/1365-2656.12567
  • The modulating role of group stability on fitness effects of group size is
           different in females and males of a communally rearing rodent
    • Authors: Luis A. Ebensperger; Loreto A. Correa, Cecilia León, Juan Ramírez-Estrada, Sebastian Abades, Álvaro Villegas, Loren D. Hayes
      Abstract: Group size may influence fitness benefits and costs that emerge from cooperative and competitive interactions in social species. However, evidence from plural breeding mammals indicates that group size is insufficient to explain variation in direct fitness, implying other attributes of social groups were overlooked.We studied the natural population of a social rodent during 5 years to test the hypothesis that social stability – in terms of group composition – modulates the effects of increasing number of breeding females (a proxy of communal rearing) and males on the number of offspring weaned (sired) and on the number of offspring weaned (sired) surviving to breeding age (two proxies of direct fitness). We quantified the effects of social stability (measured as changes in female or male group members between mating and the onset of lactation) on these fitness measures.We used live trapping, telemetry and DNA markers to determine social and fitness measures.Social stability in degus was variable in terms of the number of changes in group composition across groups. Low stability was mostly due to mortality and emigration of group members.Results supported a modulating role of social stability on the relationship between group size and the number of offspring weaned (sired). Stability in female and male group composition were both modulators of fitness to females and males.The modulatory role of stability was sex specific, where high social stability was often fitness beneficial to the females. Instead, low social stability was fitness enhancing to the males.The study shows how benefits of group living are conditioned by social stability in male and female group composition.
      PubDate: 2016-08-02T04:17:10.115507-05:
      DOI: 10.1111/1365-2656.12566
  • Energy storage and fecundity explain deviations from ecological
           stoichiometry predictions under global warming and size-selective
    • Authors: Chao Zhang; Mieke Jansen, Luc De Meester, Robby Stoks
      Abstract: A key challenge for ecologists is to predict how single and joint effects of global warming and predation risk translate from the individual level up to ecosystem functions. Recently, stoichiometric theory linked these levels through changes in body stoichiometry, predicting that both higher temperatures and predation risk induce shifts in energy storage (increases in C-rich carbohydrates and reductions in N-rich proteins) and body stoichiometry (increases in C : N and C : P). This promising theory, however, is rarely tested and assumes that prey will divert energy away from reproduction under predation risk, while under size-selective predation, prey instead increase fecundity.We exposed the water flea Daphnia magna to 4 °C warming and fish predation risk to test whether C-rich carbohydrates increase and N-rich proteins decrease, and as a result, C : N and C : P increase under warming and predation risk.Unexpectedly, warming decreased body C : N, which was driven by reductions in C-rich fat and sugar contents while the protein content did not change. This reflected a trade-off where the accelerated intrinsic growth rate under warming occurred at the cost of a reduced energy storage. Warming reduced C : N less and only increased C : P and N : P in the fish-period Daphnia. These evolved stoichiometric responses to warming were largely driven by stronger warming-induced reductions in P than in C and N and could be explained by the better ability to deal with warming in the fish-period Daphnia.In contrast to theory predictions, body C : N decreased under predation risk due to a strong increase in the N-rich protein content that offsets the increase in C-rich fat content. The higher investment in fecundity (more N-rich eggs) under predation risk contributed to this stronger increase in protein content. Similarly, the lower body C : N of pre-fish Daphnia also matched their higher fecundity.Warming and predation risk independently shaped body stoichiometry, largely by changing levels of energy storage molecules. Our results highlight that two widespread patterns, the trade-off between rapid development and energy storage and the increased investment in reproduction under size-selective predation, cause predictable deviations from current ecological stoichiometry theory.This paper demonstrates that global warming and size-selective predation risk can independently shape Daphnia magna body stoichiometry, which are largely driven by changes in energy storage molecules. Also, the trade-offs between energy storage and rapid development and the increased investment in fecundity under size-selective predation could explain deviations from ecological stoichiometry predictions. Photo credit: Joachim Mergeay.
      PubDate: 2016-05-12T07:45:48.523325-05:
      DOI: 10.1111/1365-2656.12531
  • Beyond neutral and forbidden links: morphological matches and the assembly
           of mutualistic hawkmoth–plant networks
    • Authors: Federico D. Sazatornil; Marcela Moré, Santiago Benitez-Vieyra, Andrea A. Cocucci, Ian J. Kitching, Boris O. Schlumpberger, Paulo E. Oliveira, Marlies Sazima, Felipe W. Amorim
      Abstract: A major challenge in evolutionary ecology is to understand how co-evolutionary processes shape patterns of interactions between species at community level. Pollination of flowers with long corolla tubes by long-tongued hawkmoths has been invoked as a showcase model of co-evolution. Recently, optimal foraging models have predicted that there might be a close association between mouthparts' length and the corolla depth of the visited flowers, thus favouring trait convergence and specialization at community level.Here, we assessed whether hawkmoths more frequently pollinate plants with floral tube lengths similar to their proboscis lengths (morphological match hypothesis) against abundance-based processes (neutral hypothesis) and ecological trait mismatches constraints (forbidden links hypothesis), and how these processes structure hawkmoth–plant mutualistic networks from five communities in four biogeographical regions of South America.We found convergence in morphological traits across the five communities and that the distribution of morphological differences between hawkmoths and plants is consistent with expectations under the morphological match hypothesis in three of the five communities. In the two remaining communities, which are ecotones between two distinct biogeographical areas, interactions are better predicted by the neutral hypothesis.Our findings are consistent with the idea that diffuse co-evolution drives the evolution of extremely long proboscises and flower tubes, and highlight the importance of morphological traits, beyond the forbidden links hypothesis, in structuring interactions between mutualistic partners, revealing that the role of niche-based processes can be much more complex than previously known.The authors assessed whether hawkmoths more frequently visit plants with floral tube lengths similar to their proboscis lengths beyond abundance-based processes and ecological trait mismatches constraints. The findings highlight the importance of morphological traits matching, revealing that the role of niche-based processes can be much more complex than previously known.
      PubDate: 2016-04-04T00:06:20.063831-05:
      DOI: 10.1111/1365-2656.12509
  • Natural history matters: how biological constraints shape diversified
           interactions in pollination networks
    • Authors: Pedro Jordano
      First page: 1423
      Abstract: Species-specific traits constrain the ways organisms interact in nature. Some pairwise interactions among coexisting species simply do not occur; they are impossible to observe despite the fact that partners coexist in the same place. The author discusses these ‘forbidden links’ of species interaction networks. Photo: the sphingid moth Agrius cingulata visiting a Bauhinia mollis flower; Las Yungas, Argentina. Courtesy of Andrea Cocucci.Sazatornil, F.D., Moré, M., Benitez-Vieyra, S., Cocucci, A.A., Kitching, I.J., Schlumpberger, B.O., Oliveira, P.E., Sazima, M. & Amorim, F.W. (2016) Beyond neutral and forbidden links: morphological matches and the assembly of mutualistic hawkmoth-plant networks. Journal of Animal Ecology, 85, 1586–1594.Species-specific traits and life-history characteristics constrain the ways organisms interact in nature. For example, gape-limited predators are constrained in the sizes of prey they can handle and efficiently consume. When we consider the ubiquity of such constrains, it is evident how hard it can be to be a generalist partner in ecological interactions: a free-living animal or plant cannot simply interact with every available partner it encounters. Some pairwise interactions among coexisting species simply do not occur; they are impossible to observe despite the fact that partners coexist in the same place. Sazatornil et al. () explore the nature of such constraints in the mutualisms among hawkmoths and the plants they pollinate. In this iconic interaction, used by Darwin and Wallace to vividly illustrate the power of natural selection in shaping evolutionary change, both pollinators and plants are sharply constrained in their interaction modes and outcomes.Species-specific traits constrain the ways organisms interact in nature. Some pairwise interactions among coexisting species simply do not occur; they are impossible to observe despite the fact that partners coexist in the same place. The author discusses these ‘forbidden links’ of species interaction networks. Photo: the sphingid moth Agrius cingulata visiting a Bauhinia mollis flower; Las Yungas, Argentina. Courtesy of Andrea Cocucci.
      PubDate: 2016-10-19T03:37:21.316303-05:
      DOI: 10.1111/1365-2656.12584
  • Merging elemental and macronutrient approaches for a comprehensive study
           of energy and nutrient flows
    • Authors: Shawn M. Wilder; Punidan D. Jeyasingh
      First page: 1427
      Abstract: Global warming and predation risk can have important impacts on animal physiology and life histories that can have consequences for ecosystem function. Zhang et al. () recently tested the separate and interactive effects of warming and predation risk on the body composition of Daphnia magna. By measuring both the elemental and biochemical composition of individuals, they showed that D. magna body elemental composition responded opposite to theoretical predictions and previous studies but that these changes were explained by adaptive life-history shifts in allocation to protein in eggs versus body lipid reserves. Photograph by Joachim Mergeay.Zhang, C., Jansen, M., De Meester, L. & Stoks, R. (2016) Energy storage and fecundity explain deviations from ecological stoichiometry predictions under global warming and size-selective predation. Journal of Animal Ecology 85, 1431–1441.Understanding the mechanisms through which energy and nutrients flow through ecosystems is critical to predicting and mitigating the consequences of climate change and other ecological disturbances. Ecological stoichiometry and nutritional geometry, using data on elements and macromolecules, respectively, have independently made major contributions towards this goal. Zhang et al. () provide data demonstrating that these two major frameworks can provide complementary insight into the consequences of global warming and predation risk for the physiology and life-history traits of a key aquatic herbivore, Daphnia magna. This study should catalyse further work to unite these two parallel and complementary frameworks.Global warming and predation risk can have important impacts on animal physiology and life histories that can have consequences for ecosystem function. Zhang et al. () recently tested the separate and interactive effects of warming and predation risk on the body composition of Daphnia magna. By measuring both the elemental and biochemical composition of individuals, they showed that D. magna body elemental composition responded opposite to theoretical predictions and previous studies but that these changes were explained by adaptive life-history shifts in allocation to protein in eggs versus body lipid reserves. Photograph by Joachim Mergeay.
      PubDate: 2016-10-19T03:37:28.089274-05:
      DOI: 10.1111/1365-2656.12573
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