95 Works

Data from: Parasite-infected sticklebacks increase the risk-taking behavior of uninfected group members

Nicolle Demandt, Benedikt Saus, Ralf H.J.M. Kurvers, Jens Krause, Joachim Kurtz, Jörn P. Scharsack & Ralf H. J. M. Kurvers
Trophically transmitted parasites frequently increase their hosts' risk-taking behaviour, to facilitate transmission to the next host. Whether such elevated risk-taking can spill over to uninfected group members is, however, unknown. To investigate this, we confronted groups of six three-spined sticklebacks, Gasterosteus aculeatus, containing 0, 2, 4 or 6 experimentally infected individuals with a simulated bird attack and studied their risk-taking behaviour. As a parasite, we used the tapeworm Schistocephalus solidus, which increases the risk-taking of...

Data from: Hemimetabolous genomes reveal molecular basis of termite eusociality

Mark C Harrison, Evelien Jongepier, Hugh M. Robertson, Nicolas Arning, Tristan Bitard-Feildel, Hsu Chao, Christopher P. Childers, Huyen Dinh, Harshavardhan Doddapaneni, Shannon Dugan, Johannes Gowin, Carolin Greiner, Yi Han, Haofu Hu, Daniel S.T. Hughes, Ann-Kathrin Huylmans, Carsten Kemena, Lukas P.M. Kremer, Sandra L. Lee, Alberto Lopez-Ezquerra, Ludovic Mallet, Jose M. Monroy-Kuhn, Annabell Moser, Shwetha C. Murali, Donna M. Muzny … & Erich Bornberg-Bauer
Around 150 million years ago, eusocial termites evolved from within the cockroaches, 50 million years before eusocial Hymenoptera, such as bees and ants, appeared. Here, we report the 2-Gb genome of the German cockroach, Blattella germanica, and the 1.3-Gb genome of the drywood termite Cryptotermes secundus. We show evolutionary signatures of termite eusociality by comparing the genomes and transcriptomes of three termites and the cockroach against the background of 16 other eusocial and non-eusocial insects....

Data from: Precopulatory but not postcopulatory male reproductive traits diverge in response to mating system manipulation in Drosophila melanogaster

Kristina U. Wensing, Mareike Koppik & Claudia Fricke
Competition between males creates potential for pre- and postcopulatory sexual selection and conflict. Theory predicts that males facing risk of sperm competition should evolve traits to secure their reproductive success. If those traits are costly to females, the evolution of such traits may also increase conflict between the sexes. Conversely, under the absence of sperm competition, one expectation is for selection on male competitive traits to relax thereby also relaxing sexual conflict. Experimental evolution studies...

Data from: Macrophages contribute to the cyclic activation of adult hair follicle stem cells

Donatello Castellana, Ralf Paus & Mirna Perez-Moreno
Skin epithelial stem cells operate within a complex signaling milieu that orchestrates their lifetime regenerative properties. The question of whether and how immune cells impact on these stem cells within their niche is not well understood. Here we show that skin-resident macrophages decrease in number because of apoptosis before the onset of epithelial hair follicle stem cell activation during the murine hair cycle. This process is linked to distinct gene expression, including Wnt transcription. Interestingly,...

Data from: Breeding habitat and nest site selection by an obligatory “nest-cleptoparasite”, the Amur Falcon Falco amurensis

Wieland Heim, Martin Frommhold, Arend Heim, Mikhail Barabanov, Franziska Maier, Ralf-Udo Mühle & Sergei Smirenski
The selection of a nest site is crucial for successful reproduction of birds. Animals which re-use or occupy nest sites constructed by other species often have limited choice. Little is known about the criteria of nest-stealing species to choose suitable nesting sites and habitats. Here, we analyze breeding site selection of an obligatory “nest-cleptoparasite”, the Amur Falcon Falco amurensis. We collected data on nest sites at Muraviovka Park in the Russian Far East, where the...

Data from: Shared and modality-specific brain regions that mediate auditory and visual word comprehension

Anne Keitel, Joachim Gross & Christoph Kayser
Visual speech carried by lip movements is an integral part of communication. Yet, it remains unclear in how far visual and acoustic speech comprehension are mediated by the same brain regions. Using multivariate classification of full-brain MEG data, we first probed where the brain represents acoustically and visually conveyed word identities. We then tested where these sensory-driven representations are predictive of participants’ trial-wise comprehension. The comprehension-relevant representations of auditory and visual speech converged only in...

Post-fire vegetation succession in the Siberian subarctic tundra over 45 years

Ramona Julia Heim, Anna Bucharova, Leya Brodt, Johannes Kamp, Daniel Rieker, Andrey Soromotin, Andrey Yurtaev & Norbert Hölzel
Wildfires are relatively rare in subarctic tundra ecosystems, but they can strongly change ecosystem properties. Short-term fire effects on subarctic tundra vegetation are well documented, but long-term vegetation recovery has been studied less. The frequency of tundra fires will increase with climate warming. Understanding the long-term effects of fire is necessary to predict future ecosystem changes. We used a space-for-time approach to assess vegetation recovery after fire over more than four decades. We studied soil...

Data from: Declining human pressure and opportunities for rewilding in the steppes of Eurasia

Matthias Baumann, Johannes Kamp, Florian Pötzschner, Benjamin Bleyhl, Andrey Dara, Brett Hankerson, Alexander Prishchepov, Florian Schierhorn, Daniel Müller, Norbert Hölzel, Roland Krämer, Ruslan Urazaliyev & Tobias Kuemmerle
Large and ecologically functioning steppe complexes have been lost historically across the globe, but recent land-use changes may allow the reversal of this trend in some regions. We aimed to develop and map indicators of changing human influence using satellite imagery and historical maps, and to use these indicators to identify areas for broad-scale steppe rewilding. Location Eurasian Steppes of Kazakhstan. Methods We mapped decreasing human influence indicated by cropland abandonment, declining grazing pressure, and...

A little damping goes a long way: code and data

Steve Heim, Matthew Millard, Charlotte Le Mouel & Alexander Badri-Spröwitz
It is currently unclear if damping plays a functional role in legged locomotion, and simple models often do not include damping terms. We present a new model with a damping term that is isolated from other parameters: that is, the damping term can be adjusted without retuning other model parameters for nominal motion. We systematically compare how increased damping affects stability in the face of unexpected ground-height perturbations. Unlike most studies, we focus on task-level...

Data from: Adaptive reshaping of the hormonal phenotype after social niche transition in adulthood

Alexandra M. Mutwill, Tobias D. Zimmermann, Antonia Hennicke, S. Helene Richter, Sylvia Kaiser & Norbert Sachser
Phenotypic plasticity allows individuals to adjust traits to the environment. Whether long-term adjustments of the phenotype occur during later life stages is largely unknown. To address this question, we examined whether hormonal phenotypes that are shaped by the environment during adolescence can still be reshaped in full adulthood. For this, guinea pig males were either housed in mixed-sex colonies or in heterosexual pairs. In adulthood, males were individually transferred to pair housing with a female....

Diet composition and social environment determine food consumption, phenotype and fitness in an omnivorous insect

Yeisson Gutiérrez Lopez, Marion Fresch, David Ott, Jens Brockmeyer & Christoph Scherber
Nutrition is the single most important factor for individual’s growth and reproduction. Consequently, the inability to reach the nutritional optimum imposes severe consequences for animal fitness. Yet, under natural conditions organisms may face a mixture of stressors that can modulate the effects of nutritional asymmetry. For instance, stressful environments caused by intense interaction with conspecifics. Here, we subjected the house-cricket Acheta domesticus to i) either of two types of diet that have proven to affect...

Decomposition disentangled: a test of the multiple mechanisms by which nitrogen enrichment alters litter decomposition

Eric Allan, Noémie Pichon, Seraina Cappelli, Santiago Soliveres, Norbert Hölzel, Valentin Klaus & Till Kleinebecker
Nitrogen (N) enrichment has direct effects on ecosystem functioning by altering soil abiotic conditions and indirect effects by reducing plant diversity and shifting plant functional composition from dominance by slow to fast growing species. Litter decomposition is a key ecosystem function and is affected by N enrichment either by a change in litter quality (the recalcitrance of the plant material) or through a change in soil quality (the abiotic and biotic components of the soil...

Parasite infection disrupts escape behaviour in fish shoals

Nicolle Demandt, Marit Praetz, Ralf Kurvers, Jens Krause, Joachim Kurtz & Jörn Scharsack
Many prey species have evolved collective responses to avoid predation. They rapidly transfer information about potential predators to trigger and coordinate escape waves. Predation avoidance behaviour is often manipulated by trophically transmitted parasites, to facilitate their transmission to the next host. We hypothesised that the presence of infected, behaviourally altered individuals might disturb the spread of escape waves. We used the tapeworm Schistocephalus solidus, which increases risk-taking behaviour and decrease social responsiveness of its host,...

Data from: Proteolytic processing of palmitoylated Hedgehog peptides specifies the 3-4 intervein region of the Drosophila wing

Sabine Schürmann, Georg Steffes, Dominique Manikowski, Philipp Kastl, Ursula Malkus, Shyam Bandari, Stefanie Ohlig, Corinna Ortmann, Rocio Rebollido-Rios, Mandy Otto, Harald Nüsse, Daniel Hoffmann, Christian Klämbt, Milos Galic, Jürgen Klingauf & Kay Grobe
Cell fate determination during development often requires morphogen transport from producing to distant responding cells. Hedgehog (Hh) morphogens present a challenge to this concept, as all Hhs are synthesized as terminally lipidated molecules that form insoluble clusters at the surface of producing cells. While several proposed Hh transport modes tie directly into these unusual properties, the crucial step of Hh relay from producing cells to receptors on remote responding cells remains unresolved. Using wing development...

Data from: X-ray computed tomography and its potential in ecological research: a review of studies and optimization of specimen preparation

Yeisson Gutiérrez, David Ott, Mareike Töpperwien, Tim Salditt & Christoph Scherber
Imaging techniques are a cornerstone of contemporary biology. Over the last decades, advances in micro-scale imaging techniques have allowed fascinating new insights into cell and tissue morphology and internal anatomy of organisms across kingdoms. However, most studies so far provided snapshots of given reference taxa, describing organs and tissues under “idealized” conditions. Surprisingly, there is an almost complete lack of studies investigating how an organism´s internal morphology changes in response to environmental drivers. Consequently, ecology...

Data from: Host-parasite coevolution favours parasite genetic diversity and horizontal gene transfer

Carsten Makus, Hinrich Schulenburg & Rebecca D. Schulte
Host-parasite coevolution is predicted to favour genetic diversity and the underlying mechanisms (e.g., sexual reproduction and, more generally, genetic exchange), because diversity enhances the antagonists' potential for rapid adaptation. To date, this prediction has mainly been tested and confirmed for the host. It should similarly apply to the parasite. Indeed, our previous work demonstrated that experimental coevolution between the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans and its microparasite Bacillus thuringiensis selects for genetic diversity in both antagonists. For...

Data from: Down syndrome cell adhesion molecule 1: testing for a role in insect immunity, behaviour and reproduction

Robert Peuß, Kristina U. Wensing, Luisa Woestmann, Hendrik Eggert, Barbara Milutinović, Marlene G. U. Sroka, Jörn P. Scharsack, Joachim Kurtz & Sophie A. O. Armitage
Down syndrome cell adhesion molecule 1 (Dscam1) has wide-reaching and vital neuronal functions although the role it plays in insect and crustacean immunity is less well understood. In this study, we combine different approaches to understand the roles that Dscam1 plays in fitness-related contexts in two model insect species. Contrary to our expectations, we found no short-term modulation of Dscam1 gene expression after haemocoelic or oral bacterial exposure in Tribolium castaneum, or after haemocoelic bacterial...

Data from: A global perspective on the functional responses of stream communities to flow intermittence

Julie Crabot, Cédric P. Mondy, Philippe Usseglio-Polatera, Ken M. Fritz, Paul J. Wood, Michelle J. Greenwood, Michael T. Bogan, Elisabeth I. Meyer & Thibault Datry
The current erosion of biodiversity is a major concern that threatens the ecological integrity of ecosystems and the ecosystem services they provide. Due to global change, an increasing proportion of river networks are drying and changes from perennial to non-perennial flow regimes represent dramatic ecological shifts with potentially irreversible alterations of community and ecosystem dynamics. However, there is minimal understanding of how biological communities respond functionally to drying. Here, we highlight the taxonomic and functional...

The evolution of size-dependent competitive interactions promotes species coexistence

Jaime Mauricio Anaya-Rojas, Ronald D Bassar, Tomos Potter, Allison Blanchette, Shay Callahan, Nick Framstead, David Reznick & Joseph Travis
1. Theory indicates that competing species coexist in a community when intraspecific competition is stronger than interspecific competition. When body size determines the outcome of competitive interactions between individuals, coexistence depends also on how resource use and the ability to compete for these resources change with body size. Testing coexistence theory in size-structured communities, therefore, requires disentangling the effects of size-dependent competitive abilities and niche shifts. 2. Here, we tested the hypothesis that the evolution...

Complex post-breeding moult strategies in a songbird migrating along the East Asian flyway, the Pallas’s Grasshopper Warbler Locustella certhiola

Wieland Heim, Hans-Jürgen Eilts, Philip D. Round, Oleg Bourski, Batmunkh Davaasuren, Tuvshinjargal Erdenechimeg & Jong-Gil Park
Moult strategies have received relatively little attention in current ornithology, and knowledge concerning the evolution, variability and extent of moult is sparse in many bird species. This is especially true for East Asian Locustella species where assumptions on moult patterns are based on incomplete information. We provide evidence indicating a complex post-breeding moult strategy and variable moult extent among Pallas’s Grasshopper Warbler Locustella certhiola, based on data from six ringing sites situated along its flyway...

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