241 Works

Experimental vacancies do not induce settlement despite habitat saturation in a cooperative breeder

Lyanne Brouwer & Andrew Cockburn
The paradox of cooperative breeding ­whereby individuals assist others instead of reproducing independently­ is generally explained through ecological constraints, but experimental evidence is scant. Here we performed the crucial test of the role of habitat saturation through experimental creation of vacancies and find that despite abundant presence of potential mates, subordinates are reluctant to disperse into suitable vacant habitat where conspecifics are absent. We argue that sudden disappearance of multiple group members might indicate a...

Plant Respiration Modelling with JULES for a changing climate (1860-2100)

C. Huntingford, O.K. Atkin, A. Martinez-De La Torre, L.M. Mercado, M.A. Heskel, A.B. Harper, K.J. Bloomfield, O.S. O'Sullivan, P.B. Reich, K.R. Wythers, E.E. Butler, M. Chen, K.L. Griffin, P. Meir, M.G. Tjoelker, M.H. Turnbull, S. Sitch, A. Wiltshire & Y. Malhi
The dataset contains annual global plant respiration (and related diagnostics, such as Net Primary Productivity, Gross Primary Productivity and soil respiration), applicable for pre-industrial times (taken as year 1860) through to the end of the 21st Century (year 2100). The spatial resolution of the data is 2.5 degrees latitude x 3.75 degrees longitude. These diagnostics are outputs from the Joint UK Land Environment Simulator (JULES land surface model) under four different approaches to calcluate leaf...

The ‘algebra of evolution’: the Robertson-Price identity and viability selection for body mass in a wild bird population

Gabrielle Hajduk, Craig Walling, Andrew Cockburn & Loeske Kruuk
By the Robertson-Price Identity, the change in a quantitative trait due to selection is equal to the trait’s covariance with relative fitness. We used a long-term study of superb fairy-wrens Malurus cyaneus to consider phenotypic and genetic change within a generation due to juvenile viability selection. Mortality in the four-week period between fledging and independence was 40%, and heavier nestlings were more likely to survive, but why? There was additive genetic variance for both nestling...

Evolutionary history of Neotropical savannas geographically concentrates species, phylogenetic and functional diversity of lizards

Jessica Fenker, Fabricius M. C. B. Domingos, Leonardo G. Tedeschi, Dan F. Rosauer, Fernanda P. Werneck, Guarino R. Colli, Roger M. D. Ledo, Emanuel M. Fonseca, Adrian A. Garda, Derek Tucker, W. Sites Jr., Jack, Maria F. Breitman, Flavia Soares, Lilian G. Giugliano & Craig Moritz
Supporting information (scripts) to compute diversity and endemism indices copied and available by Dan Rosauer (https ://github.com/DanRosauer/phylospatial). Aim: Understanding where and why species diversity is geographically concentrated remains a challenge in biogeography and macroevolution. This is true for the Cerrado, the most biodiverse tropical savanna in the world, which has experienced profound biodiversity loss. Previous studies have focused on a single metric (species composition), neglecting the fact that ‘species’ within the biome are often composed...

Data from: From cryptic to colourful: evolutionary decoupling of larval and adult colour in butterflies

Iliana Medina, Regina Vega-Trejo, Thomas Wallenius, Matthew Symonds & Devi Stuart-Fox
Many animals undergo complete metamorphosis, where larval forms change abruptly in adulthood. Colour change during ontogeny is common, but there is little understanding of evolutionary patterns in these changes. Here we use data on larval and adult colour for 246 butterfly species (61% of all species in Australia) to test whether the evolution of colour is coupled between life stages. We show that adults are more variable in colour across species than caterpillars and that...

Speedy revelations: how alarm calls can convey rapid, reliable information about urgent danger

Jessica McLachlan & Robert Magrath
In the perpetual struggle between high-speed predators and their prey, individuals need to react in the blink of an eye to avoid capture. Alarm calls that warn of danger therefore need to do so sufficiently rapidly that listeners can escape in time. Paradoxically, many species produce more elements in their alarm calls when signalling about more immediate danger, thereby increasing the reliability of transmission of critical information but taking longer to convey the urgent message....

Reduced avian body condition due to global warming has little reproductive or population consequences

Nina McLean, Henk Van Der Jeugd, Chris Van Turnhout, Jonathan Lefcheck & Martijn Van De Pol
Climate change has strong effects on traits such as phenology and physiology. Studies typically assume that climate-induced trait changes will have consequences for population dynamics, but explicit tests are rare. Body condition reflects energy storage and may directly affect how much can be invested in reproduction and survival. However, the causal pathway by which decreased body condition impacts population dynamics has never been quantified across multiple populations and species. Therefore, we lack a general understanding...

Limited mass-independent individual variation in resting metabolic rate in a wild population of snow voles (Chionomys nivalis)

Andres Hagmayer, Glauco Camenisch, Cindy Canale, Erik Postma & Timothée Bonnet
Resting metabolic rate (RMR) is a potentially important axis of physiological adaptation to the thermal environment. However, our understanding of the causes and consequences of individual variation in RMR in the wild is hampered by a lack of data, as well as analytical challenges. RMR measurements in the wild are generally characterized by large measurement errors and a strong dependency on mass. The latter is problematic when assessing the ability of RMR to evolve independently...

Data from: A comprehensive and user-friendly framework for 3D-data visualisation in invertebrates and other organisms

Thomas L. Semple, Rod Peakall & Nikolai J. Tatarnic
Methods for 3D‐imaging of biological samples are experiencing unprecedented development, with tools such as X‐ray micro‐computed tomography (μCT) becoming more accessible to biologists. These techniques are inherently suited to small subjects and can simultaneously image both external and internal morphology, thus offering considerable benefits for invertebrate research. However, methods for visualising 3D‐data are trailing behind the development of tools for generating such data. Our aim in this article is to make the processing, visualisation and...

Data from: Genome of an iconic Australian bird: High-quality assembly and linkage map of the superb fairy-wren (Malurus cyaneus)

Joshua V. Peñalba, Yuan Deng, Qi Fang, Leo Joseph, Craig Moritz & Andrew Cockburn
The superb fairy-wren, Malurus cyaneus, is one of the most iconic Australian passerine species. This species belongs to an endemic Australasian clade, Meliphagides, which diversified early in the evolution of the oscine passerines. Today, the oscine passer- ines comprise almost half of all avian species diversity. Despite the rapid increase of available bird genome assemblies, this part of the avian tree has not yet been repre- sented by a high-quality reference. To rectify that, we...

Alternative pathways to diversity across ecologically distinct lizard radiations

Alexander Skeels, Damien Esquerré & Marcel Cardillo
Aim: Lizard assemblages vary greatly in taxonomic, ecological and phenotypic diversity, yet the mechanisms that generate and maintain these patterns at a macroecological scale are not well understood. We aimed to characterize the ecological and environmental drivers of species richness patterns in the context of macroecological theory for ten independent lizard radiations. Location: Global Time Period: Present-day Major taxa: Lizards Methods: We analyzed patterns of species and ecological trait diversity in ten ecologically distinct and...

Genomic and phenomic analysis of island ant community assembly

Clive Darwell, Georg Fischer, Eli Sarnat, Nicholas Friedman, Cong Liu, Guilherme Baiao, Alexander Mikheyev & Evan Economo
Island biodiversity has long fascinated biologists as it typically presents tractable systems for unpicking the eco-evolutionary processes driving community assembly. In general, two recurring themes are of central theoretical interest. First, immigration, diversification, and extinction typically depend on island geographical properties (e.g. area, isolation, and age). Second, predictable ecological and evolutionary trajectories readily occur after colonization, such as the evolution of adaptive trait syndromes, trends toward specialization, adaptive radiation, and eventual ecological decline. Hypotheses such...

Empirical evidence of disturbance interactions: examples from Australian ecosystems

David B. Lindenmayer, Claire N. Foster, Martin J. Westgate & Ben.C Scheele
Ecosystems are shaped by a range of drivers including natural and human disturbances. Many natural disturbances such as fire, insect attack and windstorms are increasing in frequency and severity. At the same time, human disturbances like logging, land clearing and plantation establishment are expanding. Co-occurring disturbances can interact with far-reaching consequences, including altered ecological processes and losses of biodiversity. Whilst the importance of interacting disturbances is increasingly recognized, the majority of empirical studies focus only...

Data S1 from "Global scale drivers of crop visitor diversity and the historical development of agriculture."

Julian Brown & Saul Cunningham
Understanding diversity in flower visitor assemblages helps us improve pollination of crops and support better biodiversity conservation outcomes. Much recent research has focused on drivers of crop-visitor diversity operating over spatial scales from fields to landscapes, such as pesticide and habitat management, while drivers operating over larger scales of continents and biogeographic realms are virtually unknown. Flower and visitor traits influence attraction of pollinators to flowers, and evolve in the context of associations that can...

SNP analyses reveal a diverse pool of potential colonists to earthquake‐uplifted coastlines

Johnette Peters, Jonathan Waters, Ludovic Dutoit & Ceridwen Fraser
In species that form dense populations, major disturbance events are expected to increase the chance of establishment for immigrant lineages. Real-time tests of the impact of disturbance on patterns of genetic structure are, however, scarce. Central to testing these concepts is determining the pool of potential immigrants dispersing into a disturbed area. In 2016, a 7.8 magnitude earthquake occurred on the South Island of New Zealand. Affecting approximately 100 km of coastline, this quake caused...

Weighing the cost: the impact of serial heatwaves on body mass in a small Australian passerine

Lynda Sharpe, Belinda Cale & Janet Gardner
Rising temperatures pose a grave risk to arid zone birds because they are already living close to their physiological limits and must balance water conservation against the need for evaporative cooling. We assess how extreme temperatures affect a wild population of small passerines by monitoring daily mass change in individual Jacky Winters (a small Australasian robin; Microeca fascinans) across a series of severe heatwaves that afflicted southern Australia in the summer of 2018-19. Daily maximum...

Occupancy patterns of the introduced, predatory sugar glider in Tasmanian forests

Dejan Stojanovic
Introduced mammals pose serious threats to native island fauna, and understanding their distributionis fundamental to evaluating their conservation impact. Introduced sugar gliders (Petaurus breviceps) are the mainpredator of critically endangered swift parrots (Lathamus discolor) on mainland Tasmania. We surveyed sugar gli-der occurrence over~800 km2in an important swift parrot breeding area, the Southern Forests. During 4–5 vis-its per site, we used call broadcast of predatory owls to elicit sugar glider alarm calls and surveyed 100 sitesduring...

Bandicoots return to Booderee: initial survival, dispersal, home range and habitat preferences of reintroduced southern brown bandicoots (eastern sub species; Isoodon obesulus obesulus)

Natasha Robinson, C. I. MacGregor, B. A. Hradsky, N. Dexter & D. B. Lindenmayer
Context Reintroductions can be an effective means of re-establishing locally extinct or declining faunal populations. However, incomplete knowledge of variables influencing survival and establishment can limit successful outcomes. Aim We aimed to examine the factors (e.g. sex, body mass, release order) influencing the survival, dispersal, home range and habitat selection of reintroduced southern brown bandicoots (eastern subspecies; Isoodon obesulus obesulus) into an unfenced, predator-managed environment in south-eastern Australia (Booderee National Park). Methods Over 2 weeks...

Data from: Ecology and signal structure drive the evolution of synchronous displays

Daniela M Perez, Enzo Luigi Crisigiovanni, Marcio Roberto Pie, Ana Claudia Rorato, Sergio Roberto Lopes & Sabrina B L Araujo
Animal synchrony is found in phylogenetically distant animal groups, indicating behavioural adaptations to different selective pressures and in different signaling modalities. A notable example of synchronous display is found in fiddler crabs in that males wave their single enlarged claw during courtship. They present species-specific signals, which are composed of distinctive movement signatures. Given that synchronous waving has been reported for several fiddler crab species, the display pattern could influence the ability of a given...

Data from: GHOST: Recovering Historical Signal from Heterotachously-evolved Sequence Alignments

Stephen M. Crotty, Bui Quang Minh, Nigel G. Bean, Barbara R. Holland, Jonathan Tuke, Lars S. Jermiin & Arndt Von Haeseler
Molecular sequence data that have evolved under the influence of heterotachous evolutionary processes are known to mislead phylogenetic inference. We introduce the General Heterogeneous evolution On a Single Topology (GHOST) model of sequence evolution, implemented under a maximum-likelihood framework in the phylogenetic program IQ-TREE (http://www.iqtree.org). Simulations show that using the GHOST model, IQ-TREE can accurately recover the tree topology, branch lengths, and substitution model parameters from heterotachously evolved sequences. We investigate the performance of the...

Data from: Invasive cane toads are unique in shape but overlap in ecological niche compared to Australian native frogs

Marta Vidal Garcia, J. Scott Keogh & Marta Vidal-García
Invasive species are an important issue worldwide but predicting invasiveness, and the underlying mechanisms that cause it, is difficult. There are several primary hypotheses to explain invasion success. Two main hypothesis based on niche spaces stand out as alternative, although not exclusive. The empty niche hypothesis states that invaders occupy a vacant niche space in the recipient community, and the niche competition hypothesis states that invaders overlap with native species in niche space. Studies on...

Data from: Intraspecific variation in climate-relevant traits in a tropical rainforest lizard

John Llewelyn, Stewart L. Macdonald, Amberlee Hatcher, Craig Moritz & Ben L. Phillips
Aim The exceptionally rich biodiversity found in tropical rainforest is under threat from anthropogenic climate change. We recognize the threat, yet we have little knowledge of the capacity of tropical species to adjust their climate sensitivity in response to it. One indicator of a species’ capacity to adjust to different climates is the amount of intraspecific variation observed in its climate-relevant traits; if a climate-relevant trait varies, and this variation is correlated with local climates,...

Data from: Dating the species network: allopolyploidy and repetitive DNA evolution in American daisies (Melampodium sect. Melampodium, Asteraceae)

Jamie McCann, Tae-Soo Jang, Jiri Macas, Gerald M. Schneeweiss, Nicholas J. Matzke, Petr Novak, Tod F. Stuessy, Jose L. Villaseñor & Hanna Weiss-Schneeweiss
Allopolyploidy has played an important role in the evolution of the flowering plants. Genome mergers are often accompanied by significant and rapid alterations of genome size and structure via chromosomal rearrangements and altered dynamics of tandem and dispersed repetitive DNA families. Recent developments in sequencing technologies and bioinformatic methods allow for a comprehensive investigation of the repetitive component of plant genomes. Interpretation of evolutionary dynamics following allopolyploidization requires both the knowledge of parentage and the...

Data from: The unexpected genetic mating system of the red‐backed toadlet (Pseudophryne coriacea): a species with prolonged terrestrial breeding and cryptic reproductive behaviour

Daniel M. O'Brien, J. Scott Keogh, Aimee J. Silla & Phillip G. Byrne
Molecular technologies have revolutionised our classification of animal-mating systems, yet we still know very little about the genetic-mating systems of many vertebrate groups. It is widely believed that anuran amphibians have the highest reproductive diversity of all vertebrates, yet genetic mating systems have been studied in less than one percent of all described species. Here, we use SNPs to quantify the genetic-mating system of the terrestrial breeding red-backed toadlet Pseudophryne coriacea. In this species, breeding...

Data from: A new subfamily classification of the Leguminosae based on a taxonomically comprehensive phylogeny

(LPWG), Legume Phylogeny Working Group, Anne Bruneau, Nasim Azani, Marielle Babineau, Edeline Gagnon, Carole Sinou, Royce Steeves, Erin Zimmerman, C. Donovan Bailey, Lynsey Kovar, Madhugiri Nageswara-Rao, Hannah Banks, RuthP. Clark, Manuel De La Estrella, Peter Gasson, GeoffreyC. Kite, BenteB. Klitgaard, GwilymP. Lewis, Danilo Neves, Gerhard Prenner, María De Lourdes Rico-Arce, ArianeR. Barbosa, Maria Cristina López-Roberts, Luciano Paganucci De Queiroz, PétalaG. Ribeiro … & Tingshuang Yi
The classification of the legume family proposed here addresses the long-known non-monophyly of the traditionally recognised subfamily Caesalpinioideae, by recognising six robustly supported monophyletic subfamilies. This new classification uses as its framework the most comprehensive phylogenetic analyses of legumes to date, based on plastid matK gene sequences, and including near-complete sampling of genera (698 of the currently recognised 765 genera) and ca. 20% (3696) of known species. The matK gene region has been the most...

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  • Australian National University
  • University of Melbourne
  • University of California System
  • University of Exeter
  • Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation
  • James Cook University
  • Macquarie University
  • University of Zurich
  • University of Edinburgh
  • University of Oxford
  • University of Adelaide
  • Royal Botanic Gardens
  • University of Cambridge
  • University of Minnesota
  • University of Western Australia