Migratory bird species that feed on air-borne insects are experiencing widespread regional declines, but these remain poorly understood. Agricultural intensification in the breeding range is often regarded as one of the main drivers of these declines. Here, we tested the hypothesis that body mass in breeding individuals should reflect habitat quality in an aerial insectivore, the tree swallow (Tachycineta bicolor), along a gradient of agricultural intensity. Our dataset was collected over 7 years (2005–2011) and...
Thirty years after the discovery of HIV-1, the early transmission, dissemination and establishment of the virus in human populations remain unclear. Using statistical approaches applied to HIV-1 sequence data from central Africa, we show that from the 1920s Kinshasa was the focus of early transmission and the source of pre-1960 pandemic viruses elsewhere. Location and dating estimates were validated using the earliest HIV-1 archival sample, also from Kinshasa. The epidemic histories of HIV-1 group M...
Human harvests can unwittingly drive evolution on morphology and life history, and these selective effects may be detrimental to the management of natural resources. Although theory suggests that harvest refuges, as sources of unselected animals, could buffer the effects of human exploitation on wild populations, few studies have assessed their efficiency. We analyzed records from >7000 trophy bighorn rams (Ovis canadensis) harvested in Alberta, Canada, between 1974 and 2011 to investigate if the movement of...
We are limited in our ability to predict climate-change-induced range shifts by our inadequate understanding of how non-climatic factors contribute to determining range limits along putatively climatic gradients. Here, we present a unique combination of observations and experiments demonstrating that seed predation and soil properties strongly limit regeneration beyond the upper elevational range limit of sugar maple, a tree species of major economic importance. Most strikingly, regeneration beyond the range limit occurred almost exclusively when...
Data from: Comparing measures of breeding inequality and opportunity for selection with sexual selection on a quantitative character in bighorn ramsAlexandre M. Martin, Marco Festa-Bianchet, David W. Coltman & Fanie Pelletier
The reliability and consistency of the many measures proposed to quantify sexual selection have been questioned for decades. Realized selection on quantitative characters measured by the selection differential i was approximated by metrics based on variance in breeding success, using either the opportunity for sexual selection Is or indices of inequality. There is no consensus about which metric best approximates realized selection on sexual characters. Recently, the opportunity for selection on character mean OSM was...
Data from: Neutral and selective processes shape MHC gene diversity and expression in stocked brook charr populations (Salvelinus fontinalis)Fabien C. Lamaze, Scott A. Pavey, Eric Normandeau, Gabriel Roy, Dany Garant & Louis Bernatchez
The capacity of an individual to battle infection is an important fitness determinant in wild vertebrate populations. The major histocompatibility complex (MHC) genes are crucial for a host’s adaptive immune system to detect pathogens. However, anthropogenic activities may disrupt natural cycles of co-evolution between hosts and pathogens. In this study we investigated the dynamic sequence and expression variation of host parasite interactions in brook charr (Salvelinus fontinalis) in a context of past human disturbance via...
Data from: Sexually antagonistic association between paternal phenotype and offspring viability reinforces total selection on a sexually selected traitAlexandre M. Martin, Marco Festa-Bianchet, David W. Coltman & Fanie Pelletier
The evolution of conspicuous sexually selected traits, such as horns or antlers, has fascinated biologists for more than a century. Elaborate traits can only evolve if they substantially increase reproduction, because they probably incur survival costs to the bearer. Total selection on these traits, however, includes sexual selection on sires and viability selection on offspring and can be influenced by changes in each of these components. Non-random associations between paternal phenotype and offspring viability may...
Data from: Modelling the dispersal of the two main hosts of the raccoon rabies variant in heterogeneous environments with landscape geneticsSébastien Rioux Paquette, Benoit Talbot, Dany Garant, Julien Mainguy & Fanie Pelletier
Predicting the geographic spread of wildlife epidemics requires knowledge about the movement patterns of disease hosts or vectors. The field of landscape genetics provides valuable approaches to study dispersal indirectly, which in turn may be used to understand patterns of disease spread. Here, we applied landscape genetic analyses and spatially explicit models to identify the potential path of raccoon rabies spread in a mesocarnivore community. We used relatedness estimates derived from microsatellite genotypes of raccoons...
Data from: Experimental manipulation of female reproduction demonstrates its fitness costs in kangaroosUriel Gélin, Michelle E. Wilson, Graeme Coulson & Marco Festa-Bianchet
1. When resources are scarce, female mammals should face a trade-off between lactation and other life-history traits such as growth, survival and subsequent reproduction. Kangaroos are ideal to test predictions about reproductive costs because they may simultaneously lactate and carry a young, and have indeterminate growth and a long breeding season. 2. An earlier study in three of our five study populations prevented female eastern grey kangaroos (Macropus giganteus) from reproducing during one reproductive season...
Université de Sherbrooke9
University of Alberta2
Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center1
David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA1
University of Melbourne1
University of Edinburgh1
Alberta Environment and Sustainable Resource Development1
Fogarty International Center1
Rega Institute for Medical Research1
Memorial University of Newfoundland1