Data from: Comparing life histories across taxonomic groups in multiple dimensions: how mammal-like are insects?Adam Thomas Bakewell, Katie E. Davis, Nick J. B. Isaac, Robert P. Freckleton & Peter J. Mayhew
Explaining variation in life histories remains a major challenge because they are multi-dimensional and there are many competing explanatory theories and paradigms. An influential concept in life history theory is the 'fast-slow continuum', exemplified by mammals. Determining the utility of such concepts across taxonomic groups requires comparison of the groups' life histories in multidimensional space. Insects display enormous species richness and phenotypic diversity, but testing hypotheses like the 'fast-slow continuum' has been inhibited by incomplete...
This data set contains nematode community data for soil samples collected from two different land uses (farmland and forest) in the Peri urban area of Ningbo China. Samples were collected seasonally between April 2017 and January 2018. Nematodes were removed from soil using density centrifugation, DNA extractions were then carried out on these extracted nematodes and directed TRFLP was used to obtain a measure of nematode community structure. Data are relative fluorescence for each TRFLP...
Biodiversity responses to vegetation height and diversity in perennial meadow plantings in two urban areas in the UKB.A. Norton, G.D. Bending, R. Clark, R. Corstanje, N. Dunnett, K.L. Evans, D.R. Grafius, E. Gravestock, S.M. Grice, J.A. Harris, S. Hilton, H. Hoyle, E. Lim, T.G. Mercer, M. Pawlett, O.L. Pescott, J.P. Richards, G.E. Southon & P.H. Warren
The data describe the ecological responses (invertebrate diversity and biomass, plant diversity, soil characteristics and microbial diversity) to experimental manipulation of floristic diversity and vegetation height in planted urban meadows. The experiment consisted of a replicated set of nine different perennial meadow treatments, sown in six public urban greenspaces in the towns of Bedford and Luton, in the UK.
Phosphorus-33 uptake by seven grassland plant species from three contrasting soil phosphorus chemical formsG.K. Phoenix, D.A. Johnson, S.P. Muddimer, J.R. Leake & D.D. Cameron
Data comprises of the uptake of the plant nutrient phosphorus (P) by seven common and often co-occurring herbaceous plants grown in limestone grassland soil in pots. P uptake is from one of three different sources of P that were injected into the soil, with the P sources being labelled with radio-isotope 33P, such that uptake of this could be quantified by assessing the radioactivity of the plant tissue. The plant species were grown in pots...
The data records bird species and number in different green spaces within Sheffield City Region during June and July 2018. Activity of individual birds is also noted. Ten green spaces (parks) were surveyed on three occasions, with a researcher walking along six pre-designated line transects in each location. Birds were recorded by their common names and British Trust for Ornithology (BTO) code. Date and time were recorded for each observation. The data was collected as...
Prenatal mortality is typically overlooked in population studies, which biases evolutionary inference by confounding selection and inheritance. Birds represent an opportunity to include this ‘invisible fraction’ if each egg contains a zygote but whether hatching failure is caused by fertilisation failure versus prenatal mortality is largely unknown. We quantified fertilisation failure rates in two bird species that are popular systems for studying evolutionary dynamics in the wild. over three years, finding that overwhelming majorities (99.9%)...
Data from: The role of hybridisation in the origin and evolutionary persistence of vertebrate parthenogens: a case study of Darevskia lizardsSusana Freitas, D. James Harris, Sillero Neftali, Arakelyan Marine, Roger Butlin & Miguel Carretero
Obligate parthenogenesis is found in only 0.1% of vertebrate species, is thought to be relatively short lived and is typically of hybrid origin. However, neither the evolutionary persistence of asexuality in vertebrates, nor the conditions that allow the generation of new parthenogenetic lineages are currently well understood. It has been proposed that vertebrate parthenogenetic lineages arise from hybridisation between two divergent taxa within a specific range of phylogenetic distances (the “Balance Hypothesis”). Moreover, parthenogenetic species...
Assessing seasonal demographic covariation to understand environmental-change impacts on a hibernating mammalMaria 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...
Data from: Helping decisions and kin recognition in long-tailed tits: is call similarity used to direct help towards kin?Amy Leedale, Robert Lachlan, Elva Robinson & Ben Hatchwell
Most cooperative breeders live in discrete family groups, but in a minority, breeding populations comprise extended social networks of conspecifics that vary in relatedness. Selection for effective kin recognition may be expected for individuals in such kin neighbourhoods to maximise indirect fitness. Using a long-term social pedigree, molecular genetics, field observations and acoustic analyses, we examine how vocal similarity affects helping decisions in the long-tailed tit Aegithalos caudatus. Long-tailed tits are cooperative breeders in which...
Characterizing the patterns of hybridization between closely related species is crucial to understand the role of gene flow in speciation. In particular, systems comprising multiple contacts between sister species offer an outstanding opportunity to investigate how reproductive isolation varies with environmental conditions, demography and geographic contexts of divergence. The flat periwinkles, Littorina obtusata and L. fabalis (Gastropoda), are two intertidal sister species with marked ecological differences compatible with late stages of speciation. Although hybridization between...
Data from: The association between morphological and ecological characters across a global passerine radiationJonathan Kennedy
Strong relationships between morphological and ecological characters are commonly predicted to reflect the association between form and function, with this hypothesis being well supported in restricted taxonomic and geographic contexts. Conversely, among broader sets of species, ecological variables have been shown to have limited power to explain morphological variation. To understand these apparent discrepancies, for a large and globally distributed passerine radiation we test (i) whether the character states of four ecological variables (foraging mode,...
Genetic incompatibilities contribute to reproductive isolation between many diverging populations, but it is still unclear to what extent they play a role if divergence happens with gene flow. In contact zones between the "Crab" and "Wave" ecotypes of the snail Littorina saxatilis divergent selection forms strong barriers to gene flow, while the role of postzygotic barriers due to selection against hybrids remains unclear. High embryo abortion rates in this species could indicate the presence of...
Data from: Rubber agroforestry in Thailand provides some biodiversity benefits without reducing yieldsEleanor Warren-Thomas, Luke Nelson, Watinee Juthong, Sara Bumrungsri, Oskar Brattström, Laetitia Stroesser, Bénédicte Chambon, Éric Penot, Uraiwan Tongkaemkew, David P. Edwards & Paul M. Dolman
Monocultural rubber plantations have replaced tropical forest, causing biodiversity loss. While protecting intact or semi-intact biodiverse forest is paramount, improving biodiversity value within the 11.4 million hectares of existing rubber plantations could offer important conservation benefits, if yields are also maintained. Some farmers practice agroforestry with high-yielding clonal rubber varieties to increase and diversify incomes. Here, we ask whether such rubber agroforestry improves biodiversity value or affects rubber yields relative to monoculture. We surveyed birds,...
Continued adaptation of C4 photosynthesis after an initial burst of changes in the Andropogoneae grassesMatheus Bianconi, Jan Hackel, Maria Vorontsova, Adriana Alberti, Watchara Arthan, Sean Burke, Melvin Duvall, Elizabeth Kellogg, Sébastien Lavergne, Michael McKain, Alexandre Meunier, Colin Osborne, Paweena Traiperm, Pascal-Antoine Christin & Guillaume Besnard
C4 photosynthesis is a complex trait that sustains fast growth and high productivity in tropical and subtropical conditions and evolved repeatedly in flowering plants. One of the major C4 lineages is Andropogoneae, a group of ~ 1,200 grass species that includes some of the world's most important crops and species dominating tropical and some temperate grasslands. Previous efforts to understand C4 evolution in the group have compared a few model C4 plants to distantly related...
Data from: Making Brexit work for the environment and livelihoods: delivering a stakeholder informed vision for agriculture and fisheriesBryce D. Stewart, Charlotte Burns, Adam P. Hejnowicz, Viviane Gravey, Bethan C. O'Leary, Kevin Hicks, Fay M. Farstad & Susan E. Hartley
1. The UK’s decision to leave the EU has far-reaching implications for agriculture and fisheries. To ensure the future sustainability of UK agricultural and fisheries systems, we argue that it is essential to grasp the opportunity that Brexit is providing to develop integrated policies that improve the management and protection of the natural environments, upon which these industries rely. 2. This article advances a stakeholder informed vision of the future design of UK agriculture and...
Data from: The circular nature of recurrent life-cycle events: a test comparing tropical and temperate phenologyVanessa Staggemeier, Maria Gabriela Gutierrez Camargo, José Alexandre Diniz-Filho, Robert Freckleton, Lucas Jardim & Patricia Morellato
1. The high diversity of plant species in the tropics has revealed complex phenological patterns and reproductive strategies occurring throughout the year. Describing and analysing tropical plant phenology, and detecting triggers, demands to consider the circular nature of recurrent life-cycle events and the use of appropriated statistical metrics. 2. Here we explore analytical pitfalls potentially affecting results of studies that do not consider the circular nature of phenology data when comparing resting and non-resting systems,...
Habitat destruction is the single greatest anthropogenic threat to biodiversity. Decades of research on this issue have led to the accumulation of hundreds of data sets comparing species assemblages in larger, intact, habitats to smaller, more fragmented, habitats. Despite this, little synthesis or consensus has been achieved, primarily because of non‐standardized sampling methodology and analyses of notoriously scale‐dependent response variables (i.e., species richness). To be able to compare and contrast the results of habitat fragmentation...
The accumulation of exceptional ecological diversity within a lineage is a key feature of adaptive radiation resulting from diversification associated with the subdivision of previously underutilized resources. The invasion of unoccupied niche space is predicted to be a key determinant of adaptive diversification, and this process may be particularly important if the diversity of competing lineages within the area, in which the radiation unfolds, is already high. Here, we test whether the evolution of nectarivory...
Data from: The role of structural genomic variants in population differentiation and ecotype formation in Timema cristinae walking sticksKay Lucek, Zach Gompert & Patrik Nosil
Theory predicts that structural genomic variants such as inversions can promote adaptive diversification and speciation. Despite increasing empirical evidence that adaptive divergence can be triggered by one or a few large inversions, the degree to which widespread genomic regions under divergent selection are associated with structural variants remains unclear. Here we test for an association between structural variants and genomic regions that underlie parallel host-plant associated ecotype formation in Timema cristinae stick insects. Using mate-pair...
Hybrid zone movement may result in substantial unidirectional introgression of selectively neutral material from the local to the advancing species, leaving a genetic footprint. This genetic footprint is represented by a trail of asymmetric tails and displaced cline centres in the wake of the moving hybrid zone. A peak of admixture linkage disequilibrium is predicted to exist ahead of the centre of the moving hybrid zone. We test these predictions of the movement hypothesis in...
University of Sheffield20
University of Gothenburg3
University of York3
UK Centre for Ecology & Hydrology2
University of Cambridge2
University of Lisbon2
University of Porto2
Donald Danforth Plant Science Center1
University of Kansas1
Universidade Federal de Goiás1
Sao Paulo State University1
University of Jos1
Universidade do Oeste Paulista1
Utah State University1