Understanding whether populations and communities can evolve fast enough to keep up with ongoing climate change is one of the most pressing issues in biology today. A growing number of studies have documented rapid evolutionary responses to warming, suggesting that populations may be able to persist despite temperature increases. The challenge now is to better understand how species interactions, which are ubiquitous in nature, mediate these population responses to warming. Here we use laboratory natural...
Data from: Differential resource consumption in leaf litter mixtures by native and non-native amphipodsChelsea J. Little & Florian Altermatt
Leaf litter processing is an essential ecosystem function in freshwater systems, since much of the carbon and nutrients moving through freshwater food webs come from the surrounding terrestrial ecosystems. Thus, it is important to understand how the species performing this function differ, especially because many native species are being replaced by non-native species in aquatic ecosystems. We used a field experiment to examine leaf consumption rates of two common shredding macroinvertebrates (the native Gammarus fossarum...
Data from: A taxonomic revision of the whitefish radiation of lakes Brienz and Thun, Switzerland, with descriptions of four new species (Teleostei: Coregonidae)Oliver Martin Selz, Ole Seehausen, Pascal Vonlanthen & Carmela Dönz
The alpha taxonomy of the endemic whitefish of lakes Brienz and Thun, Switzerland, is revised. We evaluate the status of seven known species: Coregonus steinmanni sp. nov., Coregonus profundus sp. nov. and Coregonus acrinasus sp. nov. are endemic to Lake Thun; Coregonus brienzii sp. nov. is endemic to Lake Brienz; and C. alpinus, C. albellus, and C. fatioi from lakes Brienz and Thun are redescribed. One of these species, C. alpinus, is revised, since the...
Data from: Parasite resistance predicts fitness better than fecundity in a natural population of the freshwater snail Potamopyrgus antipodarumDorota Paczesniak, Kirsten Klappert, Kirstin Kopp, Maurine Neiman, Katri Seppälä, Curtis M. Lively & Jukka Jokela
The cost of males should give asexual females an advantage when in competition with sexual females. In addition, high-fecundity asexual genotypes should have an advantage over low-fecundity clones, leading to reduction in clonal diversity over time. To evaluate fitness components in a natural population, we measured the annual reproductive rate of individual sexual and asexual female Potamopyrgus antipodarum, a New Zealand freshwater snail, in field enclosures that excluded competitors and predators. We used allozyme genotyping...
Data for: Interactive effects of foundation species on ecosystem functioning and stability in response to disturbanceAnita Narwani
A major challenge in ecology is to understand determinants of ecosystem functioning and stability in the face of disturbance. Some important species can strongly shape community structure and ecosystem functioning, but their impacts and interactions on ecosystem-level responses to disturbance are less well known. Shallow ponds provide a model system in which to study the effects of such species because some taxa mitigate transitions between alternate ecosystem states caused by eutrophication. We performed pond experiments...
Ecological opportunity is considered a crucial factor for adaptive radiation. Here, we combine genetic, morphological and ecological data to assess species and ecomorphological diversity of Artic charr in six lakes of a catchment in southernmost Greenland, harbouring only charr and stickleback. Because the diversity of habitats and resources increases with lake size, we predict a positive association between lake size and the extent of ecomorphological diversity. The largest lake of the catchment harbours the largest...
Data from: Evolutionary costs and benefits of infection with diverse strains of Spiroplasma in pea aphidsHugo Mathé-Hubert, Heidi Kaech, Pravin Ganesanandamoorthy & Christoph Vorburger
The heritable endosymbiont Spiroplasma infects many insects and has repeatedly evolved the ability to protect its hosts against different parasites. Defenses do not come for free to the host, and theory predicts that more costly symbionts need to provide stronger benefits to persist in host populations. We investigated the costs and benefits of Spiroplasma infections in pea aphids (Acyrthosiphon pisum), testing 12 bacterial strains from three different clades. Virtually all strains decreased aphid lifespan and...
Data from: Niches within a niche: ecological differentiation of subterranean amphipods across Europe’s interstitial watersCene Fiser, Teo Delić, Roman Luštrik, Maja Zagmajster & Florian Altermatt
Species that successfully colonized subterranean environments are subject to two opposing selection processes. Stringent abiotic factors select for convergent adaptations, such as loss of eyes and pigments, while interspecific competition drives between-species divergence. Subterranean species can resolve opposing selection by adaptation to physically different microhabitats. Yet, species frequently co-occur in physically homogeneous subterranean habitats, like interstitial. These co-occurrences in such a narrow ecological context can be explained either by equalizing mechanisms, in which neither of...
Data from: Gene expression in the phenotypically plastic Arctic charr (Salvelinus alpinus): a focus on growth and ossification at early stages of developmentSamantha V. Beck, Katja Räsänen, Ehsan P. Ahi, Bjarni K. Kristjánsson, Skúli Skúlason, Zophonías O. Jónsson & Camille A. Leblanc
Gene expression during development shapes the phenotypes of individuals. Although embryonic gene expression can have lasting effects on developmental trajectories, few studies consider the role of maternal effects, such as egg size, on gene expression. Using qPCR, we characterize relative expression of 14 growth and/or skeletal promoting genes across embryonic development in Arctic charr (Salvelinus alpinus). We test to what extent their relative expression is correlated with egg size and size at early life‐stages within...
Data from: Temperature-dependence of minimum resource requirements alters competitive hierarchies in phytoplanktonLeah Lewington-Pearce, Anita Narwani, Mridul K. Thomas, Colin Kremer, Helena Vogler & Pavel Kratina
1. Resource competition theory is a conceptual framework that provides mechanistic insights into competition and community assembly of species with different resource requirements. However, there has been little exploration of how resource requirements depend on other environmental factors, including temperature. Changes in resource requirements as influenced by environmental temperature would imply that climate warming can alter the outcomes of competition and community assembly. 2. We experimentally demonstrate that environmental temperature alters the minimum light and...
The role of interspecific hybridization in evolution is still being debated. Interspecific hybridization has on the one hand been suggested to facilitate the evolution of ecological novelty and hence the invasion of new niches and adaptive radiation when ecological opportunity is present beyond the parental species niches. On the other hand, hybrids between two ecologically divergent species may perform less well than parental species in their respective niches because hybrids would be intermediate in performance...
Colonization of new ecological niches has triggered large adaptive radiations. Although some lineages have made use of such opportunities, not all do so. The factors causing this variation among lineages are largely unknown. Here, we show that deficiency in docosahexaenoic acid (DHA), an essential ω-3 fatty acid, can constrain freshwater colonization by marine fishes. Our genomic analyses revealed multiple independent duplications of the fatty acid desaturase gene Fads2 in stickleback lineages that subsequently colonized and...
Swiss Federal Institute of Aquatic Science and Technology12
Hólar University College1
Gifu Kyoritsu University1
Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center1
University of Iceland1
Fukui Prefectural University1
University of Zurich1
Spanish National Research Council1