315 Works

Data from: The Achilles' heel hypothesis: misinformed keystone individuals impair collective learning and reduce group success

Jonathan Pruitt, Colin Wright, Carl Keiser, Alexander DeMarco, Matt Grobis, Noa Pinter-Wollman, Matthew M. Grobis, Alex E. DeMarco, Carl N. Keiser, Jonathan N. Pruitt & Colin M. Wright
Many animal societies rely on highly influential keystone individuals for proper functioning. When information quality is important for group success, such keystone individuals have the potential to diminish group performance if they possess inaccurate information. Here we test whether information quality (accurate or inaccurate) influences collective outcomes when keystone individuals are the first to acquire it. We trained keystone or generic individuals to attack or avoid novel stimuli and implanted these seed individuals within groups...

Habitat complexity dampens selection on prey activity level

Carl Keiser, Spencer Ingley, Benjamin Toscano, Inon Scharf & Jonathan Pruitt
Conspecific prey individuals often exhibit persistent differences in behavior (i.e., animal personality) and consequently vary in their susceptibility to predation. How this form of selection varies across environmental contexts is essential to predicting ecological and evolutionary dynamics, yet remains currently unresolved. Here, we use three separate predator–prey systems (sea star–snail, wolf spider–cricket, and jumping spider–cricket) to independently examine how habitat structural complexity influences the selection that predators impose on prey behavioral types. Prior to conducting...

Local extinction risk under climate change in a neotropical asymmetrically dispersed epiphyte

Miguel Acevedo, Miguel Acevedo, Lydia Beaudrot, Elvia Melendez-Ackerman & Raymond Tremblay
1. The long-term fate of populations experiencing disequilibrium conditions with their environment will ultimately depend on how local colonization and extinction dynamics respond to abiotic conditions (e.g. temperature and rainfall), dispersal limitation and biotic interactions (e.g. competition, facilitation, or interactions with natural enemies). Understanding how these factors influence distributional dynamics under climate change is a major knowledge gap, particularly for small ranged and dispersal-limited plant species, which are at higher risk of extinction. Epiphytes are...

The impact of bioenergy pine plantation management practices on bee communities

Xingwen Loy, David Gruenewald, Isabel Gottlieb, Emily Dobbs, Andriana Miljanic, Jamieson Botsch, Brice Lawley, Holly Ober, Lora Smith, Robert Fletcher & Berry Brosi
1. Cultivation of bioenergy feedstocks is a growing land-use worldwide, yet we have a poor understanding of how bioenergy crop management practices affect biodiversity. This knowledge gap is particularly acute for candidate cellulosic bioenergy feedstocks, such as tree plantations, and for organisms that provide important ecosystem services, such as pollinators. 2. We examined bee communities in 83 sites across three states in the southeastern USA—Alabama, Florida and Georgia. We compared bee abundance and diversity in...

A new target capture phylogeny elucidates the systematics and evolution of wing coupling in sack‐bearer moths

Ryan St Laurent, Carlos G. C. Mielke, Daniel Herbin, Kelly M. Dexter & Akito Y. Kawahara
The frenulum is a wing coupling structure that is found on the wings of most families of Lepidoptera. It is a single bristle or set of bristles that originate from the base of the hindwing that often interlocks with the forewing during flight. This wing coupling mechanism is thought to have been a major evolutionary innovation that allowed for enhanced flight in Lepidoptera. The sack-bearer moths (Mimallonidae) are unusual among Lepidoptera in that not all...

Data from: Urbanization and population genetic structure of the Panama City crayfish (Procambarus econfinae)

James Austin, Sarah Duncan, Ellen Robertson & Robert Fletcher
For species with geographically restricted distributions, the impacts of habitat loss and fragmentation on long-term persistence may be particularly pronounced. We examined the genetic structure of Panama City crayfish (PCC), Procambarus econfinae, whose historical distribution is limited to an area approximately 145 km2, largely within the limits of Panama City and eastern Bay County, Florida, USA. Currently, PCC occupy approximately twenty-eight percent of its historical range, with suitable habitat composed of fragmented patches in the...

Sex affects immunolabeling for histone 3 K27me3 in the trophectoderm of the bovine blastocyst but not labeling for histone 3 K18ac

Peter Hansen, Luciano Carvalheira, Paula Tribulo & Alan Borges
The mammalian embryo displays sexual dimorphism in the preimplantation period. Moreover, competence of the embryo to develop is dependent on the sire from which the embryo is derived and can be modified by embryokines produced by the endometrium such as colony stimulating factor 2 (CSF2). The preimplantation period is characterized by large changes in epigenetic modifications of DNA and histones. It is possible, therefore, that effects of sex, sire, and embryo regulatory molecules are mediated...

A two-tier bioinformatic pipeline to develop probes for target capture of nuclear loci with applications in Melastomataceae

Johanna Jantzen, Prabha Amarasinghe, Ryan Folk, Marcelo Reginato, Fabian Michelangeli, Douglas Soltis, Nico Cellinese & Pamela Soltis
Premise of the study: Putatively single-copy nuclear (SCN) loci, identified using genomic resources of closely related species, are ideal for phylogenomic inference. However, suitable genomic resources are not available for many clades, including Melastomataceae. We introduce a versatile approach to identify SCN loci for clades with few genomic resources and use it to develop probes for target enrichment in the distantly related Memecylon and Tibouchina (Melastomataceae). Methods: We present a two-tiered pipeline. First, we identified...

Data from: Preserved collagen reveals species identity in archaeological marine turtle bones from Caribbean and Florida sites

Michael Buckley, Virginia L. Harvey, Michelle J. LeFebvre, Susan D. DeFrance, Casper Toftgaard & Andrew C. Kitchener
Advancements in molecular science are continually improving our understanding of marine turtle biology and evolution. However, there are still considerable gaps in our understanding, such as past marine turtle distributions, which can benefit from advanced zooarchaeological analyses. Here we apply collagen fingerprinting to 130 archaeological marine turtle bone samples up to 2500 years old from the Caribbean and Florida’s Gulf Coast for faunal identification, finding the vast majority of samples (88%) to contain preserved collagen...

Assessing seasonal demographic covariation to understand environmental-change impacts on a hibernating mammal

Maria Paniw, Dylan Childs, Kenneth Armitage, Daniel Blumstein, Julien Martin, Madan Oli & Arpat Ozgul
Natural populations are exposed to seasonal variation in environmental factors that simultaneously affect several demographic rates (survival, development, reproduction). The resulting covariation in these rates determines population dynamics, but accounting for its numerous biotic and abiotic drivers is a significant challenge. Here, we use a factor-analytic approach to capture partially unobserved drivers of seasonal population dynamics. We use 40 years of individual-based demography from yellow-bellied marmots (Marmota flaviventer) to fit and project population models that...

Unoccupied aerial system enabled functional modeling of maize (Zea mays L.) height reveals dynamic expression of loci associated to temporal growth

Steven Anderson, Seth Murray, Yuanyuan Chen, Lonesome Malambo, Anjin Chang, Sorin Popescu, Dale Cope & Jinha Jung
Unoccupied aerial systems (UAS) were used to phenotype growth trajectories of inbred maize populations under field conditions. Three recombinant inbred line populations were surveyed on a weekly basis collecting RGB images across two irrigation regimens (irrigated and non-irrigated/rain fed). Plant height, estimated by the 95th percentile (P95) height from UAS generated 3D point clouds, exceeded 70% correlation to manual ground truth measurements and 51% of experimental variance was explained by genetics. The Weibull sigmoidal function...

Data from: samc: An R package for connectivity modeling with spatial absorbing Markov chains

Andrew Marx, Chao Wang, Jorge Sefair, Miguel Acevedo & Robert Fletcher
Quantifying landscape connectivity is fundamental to better understand and predict how populations respond to environmental change. Currently, popular methods to quantify landscape connectivity emphasize how landscape features provide resistance to movement. While many tools are available to quantify landscape resistance, these do not discern between two fundamentally different sources of resistance: movement behavior and mortality. To address this issue, we developed the samc package that quantifies landscape connectivity using absorbing Markov chain theory. Within this...

Data from: Higher-level phylogeny and reclassification of Lampyridae (Coleoptera: Elateroidea)

Gavin Martin, Kathrin Stanger-Hall, Marc Branham, Luiz Da Silveira, Sarah Lower, David Hall, Xue-Yan Li, Alan Lemmon, Emily Lemmon & Seth Bybee
Fireflies (Lampyridae) are a diverse family of beetles which exhibit an array of morphologies including varying antennal and photic organ morphologies. Due in part to their morphological diversity, the classification within the Lampyridae has long been in flux. Here we use an anchored hybrid enrichment approach to reconstruct the most extensive molecular phylogeny of Lampyridae to date (436 loci and 98 taxa) and to evaluate firefly higher-level classification. We propose several classification changes supported by...

Data from: The biotic interactions hypothesis partially explains bird species turnover along a lowland Neotropical precipitation gradient

Juan Pablo Gomez, Jose Miguel Ponciano, Gustavo Londoño & Scott Robinson
Aim: We evaluated the influence of climate in determining bird communities along precipitation gradients. We argue that mechanisms responsible for community turnover along precipitation gradients are similar to mechanisms operating along temperature and latitudinal gradients. We test the hypothesis that environmental conditions affect community composition in dry forests, whereas biotic interactions affect community composition in wet forests. Location: Low-elevation forests along a precipitation gradient in Colombia where precipitation ranges from 700 – 4000 mm annually...

Altered Gut Microbiome Profile in Patients with Pulmonary Arterial Hypertension

Seungbum Kim
Pulmonary arterial hypertension (PAH) is considered a disease of the pulmonary vasculature. Limited progress has been made in preventing or arresting progression of PAH despite extensive efforts. Our previous studies indicated that PAH could be considered a systemic disease since its pathology involves interplay of multiple organs. This, coupled with increasing implication of the gut and its microbiome in chronic diseases, led us to hypothesize that PAH patients exhibit a distinct gut microbiome that contributes...

Extreme variation in testes size in an insect is linked to recent mating activity

Ginny Greenway, Lauren Cirino, Daniela Wilner, Ummat Somjee, Maria-Eleni Anagnostou, Russell Hepple & Christine Miller
Ample sperm production is essential for successful male reproduction in many species. The amount of sperm a male can produce is typically constrained by the size of his testes, which can be energetically expensive to grow and maintain. Whilst the economics of ejaculate allocation has been the focus of much theoretical and empirical literature, relatively little attention has been paid to individual adult variation and plasticity at the source of sperm production, the testes themselves....

Data from: Habitat urbanization and stress response are primary predictors of personality variation in Northern cardinals (Cardinalis cardinalis)

Ping Huang, Colette St. Mary & Rebecca Kimball
Behavioral traits that vary consistently among individuals across different contexts are often termed as personality traits. The correlated suite formed by those traits, called a ‘behavioral syndrome’, can provide a more comprehensive way to view animal behavior. Both extrinsic and intrinsic ‘states’ (defined as strategically relevant individual features affecting the cost-and-benefit trade-offs of behavioral actions) have the potential to shape among-individual variation in personality traits, as well as behavioral syndromes. Here, we used Northern cardinals...

Xylem systems genetics analysis reveals a key regulator of lignin biosynthesis in Populus deltoides

MATIAS KIRST
Despite the growing resources and tools for high-throughput characterization and analysis of genomic information, the discovery of the genetic elements that regulate complex traits remains a challenge. Systems genetics is an emerging field that aims to understand the flow of biological information that underlies complex traits from genotype to phenotype. In this study, we used a systems genetics approach to identify and evaluate regulators of the lignin biosynthesis pathway in Populus deltoides by combining genome,...

Data from: Environmental and spatial effects on coastal stream fishes in the Atlantic rainforest

Cristina Gonçalves, Robert Holt, Mary Christman & Lilian Casatti
Contemporary and historical factors influence assemblage structure. The environmental and spatial influences acting on fish organization of rainforest coastal streams in the Atlantic rainforest of Brazil were examined. Fish (and functional traits such as morphology, diet, velocity preference, body size), environmental variables (pH, water conductivity, dissolved oxygen, temperature, stream width, flow, depth, substrate) and altitude were measured from 59 stream reaches. Asymmetric eigenvector maps were used to model the spatial structure considering direction of fish...

The biotic interactions hypothesis partially explains bird species turnover along a lowland Neotropical precipitation gradient

Juan Pablo Gomez, Jose Ponciano, Gusatvo Londoño & Scott Robinson
Aim We evaluated the influence of climate in determining bird communities along precipitation gradients. We argue that mechanisms responsible for community turnover along precipitation gradients are similar to mechanisms operating along temperature and latitudinal gradients. We test the hypothesis that environmental conditions affect community composition in dry forests, whereas biotic interactions affect community composition in wet forests. Location Low-elevation forests along a precipitation gradient in Colombia where precipitation ranges from 700 – 4000 mm annually...

Data from: Plant-bacteria-soil response to frequency of simulated nitrogen deposition has implications for global ecosystem change

Jirong Cao, Shuang Pang, Qibing Wang, Mark Williams, Xiu Jia, Shasha Dun, Junjie Yang, Yunhai Zhang, Jing Wang, Xiaotao Lü, Yecui Hu, Linghao Li, Yuncong Li & Xingguo Han
Atmospheric nitrogen (N) deposition, generally, has been simulated through a single or relatively few N applications per year for its ecological effect study. Despite the importance of timing in ecosystem processes, ecological experiments with more realistic N addition frequencies are rare. We employed a novel design with typical twice (2X) vs. atypical monthly (12X) N applications per year to explore effects of N addition frequency on above- and below-ground biodiversity and function. Each year, several...

Decoupled erosion of amphibians’ phylogenetic and functional diversity from extinction

Brunno Oliveira, Brett Scheffers & Gabriel Costa
Aim: It has been argued that the loss of phylogenetic diversity (PD) from species extinctions will result in concomitant loss of functional diversity (FD). As a result, species extinction undermines not only unique evolutionary history, but also ecosystem function and stability. Using data from >6,000 amphibian species globally, we assess the potential erosion of PD and FD from extinction. Location: Global. Time period: From the present day to the next 100 years. Major taxa studied:...

Phylogeography and population genetics of pine butterflies: sky islands increase genetic divergence

Dale Halbritter, Caroline Storer, Akito Kawahara & Jaret Daniels
The sky islands of southeastern Arizona (AZ) mark a major transition zone between tropical and temperate biota and are considered a neglected biodiversity hotspot. Dispersal ability and host plant specificity are thought to impact the history and diversity of insect populations across the sky islands. We aimed to investigate the population structure and phylogeography of two pine-feeding pierid butterflies, the pine white (Neophasia menapia) and the Mexican pine white (N. terlooii), restricted to these "islands"...

Sex‐differences in disease avoidance behavior vary across modes of pathogen exposure

Carl N. Keiser, Volker H.W. Rudolf, Matthew C. Luksik & Julia B. Saltz
Sex‐differences in disease susceptibility are widespread, and these disparities are often compounded in cases where sexual dimorphism increases exposure risk to parasites for one sex more than the other. Studies rarely link sex‐differences in disease susceptibility to sex‐differences in infection avoidance behavior. Yet, understanding the intersection of hosts’ susceptibility to infection and infection avoidance behavior is essential to predicting infection risk variation. Here, we use the fruit fly Drosophila melanogaster and a generalist entomopathogenic fungus,...

Relationships among wood-boring beetles, fungal endophytes and saprotrophs, and the decomposition of forest biomass.

James Skelton, Michelle Jusino, Paige Carlson, Katherine Smith, Mark Banik, Daniel Linder, Jonathan Palmer & Jiri Hulcr
A prevailing paradigm in forest ecology is that wood-boring beetles facilitate wood decay and carbon cycling, but empirical tests have yielded mixed results. We experimentally determined the effects of wood borers on fungal community assembly and wood decay within pine trunks in the southeastern United States. Pine trunks were made either beetle-accessible or inaccessible. Fungal communities were compared using culturing and high-throughput meta-barcode sequencing of DNA and RNA. Prior to beetle infestation, living pines had...

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