40 Works

Data from: Using experimentation to understand the 10-year snowshoe hare cycle in the boreal forest of North America

Charles Krebs, Rudy Boonstra, Stan Boutin & Charles J. Krebs
1. Population cycles have long fascinated ecologists from the time of Charles Elton in the 1920s. The discovery of large population fluctuations in undisturbed ecosystems challenged the idea that pristine nature was in a state of balance. The 10-year cycle of snowshoe hares (Lepus americanus Erxleben) across the boreal forests of Canada and Alaska is a classic cycle, recognized by fur traders for more than 300 years. 2. Since the 1930s ecologists have investigated the...

Data from: Native freshwater species get out of the way: Prussian carp (Carassius gibelio) impacts both fish and benthic invertebrate communities in North America

Jonathan L.W. Ruppert, Cassandra Docherty, Kenton Neufeld, Kyle Hamilton, Laura MacPherson, Mark S. Poesch & Jonathan L. W. Ruppert
Prussian Carp (Carassius gibelio) are one of the most noxious non-native species in Eurasia. Recently, Prussian Carp, a non-native freshwater fish species, were genetically confirmed in Alberta, Canada and have been rapidly expanding their range in North America since establishment. Given their rapid range expansion, there is an increasing need to determine how Prussian Carp may impact native species. We assessed the severity of the Prussian Carp invasion by 1) determining their impact on fish...

Data from: Nowhere to hide: the impact of linear disturbances on the spatial dynamics of predator and prey in a large mammal system

Craig DeMars & Stan Boutin
Rapid landscape alteration associated with human activity is currently challenging the evolved dynamical stability of many predator-prey systems by forcing species to behaviorally respond to novel environmental stimuli. In many forested systems, linear features (LFs) such as roads, pipelines and resource exploration lines (i.e. seismic lines) are a ubiquitous form of landscape alteration that have been implicated in altering predator-prey dynamics. One hypothesized effect is that LFs facilitate predator movement into and within prey refugia,...

Data from: The K=2 conundrum

Jasmine K. Janes, Joshua M. Miller, Julian R. Dupuis, Rene M. Malenfant, Jamieson C. Gorrell, Catherine I. Cullingham & Rose L. Andrew
Assessments of population genetic structure have become an increasing focus as they can provide valuable insight into patterns of migration and gene flow. STRUCTURE, the most highly cited of several clustering-based methods, was developed to provide robust estimates without the need for populations to be determined a priori. STRUCTURE introduces the problem of selecting the optimal number of clusters and as a result the ΔK method was proposed to assist in the identification of the...

Data from: Bryophyte abundance, diversity and composition after retention harvest in boreal mixedwood forest

Samuel F. Bartels, S. Ellen Macdonald, Derek Johnson, Richard T. Caners & John R. Spence
1. Variable-retention harvest is widely recognised as an alternative to more intensive methods such as clear-cutting. However, present information is inadequate to judge impact of variable-retention on biodiversity of indigenous forest organisms intolerant of canopy removal, such as forest-inhabiting bryophytes. 2. We examined how bryophyte species cover, richness, diversity and composition change with time in response to a broad range of dispersed retention harvest treatments (2% (clear-cut), 10%, 20%, 50%, 75% retention of original basal...

Data from: Can terrestrial laser scanners (TLSs) and hemispherical photographs predict tropical dry forest succession with liana abundance?

Gerardo Arturo Sánchez-Azofeifa, J. Antonio Guzmán-Quesada, Mauricio Vega-Araya, Carlos A. Campos-Vargas, Sandra Milena Durán, Nikhil D'Souza, Thomas Gianoli, Carlos Portillo-Quintero, Iain Sharp, Carlos Campos-Vargas &
Tropical dry forests (TDFs) are ecosystems with long drought periods, a mean temperature of 25 °C, a mean annual precipitation that ranges from 900 to 2000 mm, and that possess a high abundance of deciduous species (trees and lianas). What remains of the original extent of TDFs in the Americas remains highly fragmented and at different levels of ecological succession. It is estimated that one of the main fingerprints left by global environmental and climate...

Data from: Probability matching in perceptrons: effects of conditional dependence and linear nonseparability

Michael R.W. Dawson, Maya Gupta & Michael R. W. Dawson
Probability matching occurs when the behavior of an agent matches the likelihood of occurrence of events in the agent's environment. For instance, when artificial neural networks match probability, the activity in their output unit equals the past probability of reward in the presence of a stimulus. Our previous research demonstrated that simple artificial neural networks (perceptrons, which consist of a set of input units directly connected to a single output unit) learn to match probability...

Data from: Towards robust evolutionary inference with integral projection models

M. J. Janeiro, D. W. Coltman, M. Festa-Bianchet, F. Pelletier & M. B. Morrissey
Integral projection models (IPMs) are extremely flexible tools for ecological and evolutionary inference. IPMs track the distribution of phenotype in populations through time, using functions describing phenotype-dependent development, inheritance, survival and fecundity. For evolutionary inference, two important features of any model are the ability to (i) characterize relationships among traits (including values of the same traits across ages) within individuals, and (ii) characterize similarity between individuals and their descendants. In IPM analyses, the former depends...

Data from: Deletion/loss of bone morphogenetic protein 7 changes tooth morphology and function in Mus musculus: implications for dental evolution in mammals

Chelsey Zurowski, Heather Jamniczky, Daniel Graf & Jessica Theodor
Quantifying regulatory gene effects on dental morphology and function has implications for the underlying mechanisms that generated dental diversity in mammals. We tested the hypothesis that regulatory gene expression changes lead to differences in molars using a neural crest knockout of bone morphogenetic protein 7 (BMP7) in Mus musculus. 3D geometric morphometric methods were used to quantify the shape of the molar toothrow. BMP7 mutants have extra cusps on the first upper and lower molars,...

Data from: Genetic and genomic evidence of niche partitioning and adaptive radiation in mountain pine beetle fungal symbionts

Dario I. Ojeda Alayon, Clement K. M. Tsui, Nicolas Feau, Arnaud Capron, Braham Dhillon, Zhang Yiyuan, Sepideh Massoumi Alamouti, Celia K. Boone, Allan L. Carroll, Janice E.K. Cooke, Amanda D. Roe, Felix A. H. Sperling, Richard C. Hamelin, Janice E. K. Cooke & Yiyuan Zhang
Bark beetles form multipartite symbiotic associations with blue stain fungi (Ophiostomatales, Ascomycota). These fungal symbionts play an important role during the beetle's life cycle by providing nutritional supplementation, overcoming tree defences and modifying host tissues to favour brood development. The maintenance of stable multipartite symbioses with seemingly less competitive symbionts in similar habitats is of fundamental interest to ecology and evolution. We tested the hypothesis that the coexistence of three fungal species associated with the...

Data from: Territory surveillance and prey management: wolves keep track of space and time

Ulrike E. Schlägel, Evelyn H. Merrill & Mark A. Lewis
Identifying behavioral mechanisms that underlie observed movement patterns is difficult when animals employ sophisticated cognitive-based strategies. Such strategies may arise when timing of return visits is important, for instance to allow for resource renewal or territorial patrolling. We fitted spatially explicit random-walk models to GPS movement data of six wolves (Canis lupus; Linnaeus, 1758) from Alberta, Canada to investigate the importance of the following: (1) territorial surveillance likely related to renewal of scent marks along...

Data from: Multilevel and sex-specific selection on competitive traits in North American red squirrels.

David N. Fisher, Stan Boutin, Ben Dantzer, Murray M. Humphries, Jeffrey E. Lane & Andrew G. McAdam
Individuals often interact more closely with some members of the population (e.g. offspring, siblings or group members) than they do with other individuals. This structuring of interactions can lead to multilevel natural selection, where traits expressed at the group-level influence fitness alongside individual-level traits. Such multilevel selection can alter evolutionary trajectories, yet is rarely quantified in the wild, especially for species that do not interact in clearly demarcated groups. We quantified multilevel natural selection on...

Data from: Ecosystem memory of wildfires affects resilience of boreal mixedwood biodiversity after retention harvest

J.A. Colin Bergeron, Jaime Pinzon, Sonya Odsen, Samuel Bartels, S. Ellen Macdonald, John R. Spence & J. A. Colin Bergeron
The extent to which past states influence present and future ecosystem characteristics (ecosystem memory (EM)) is challenging to assess because signals of past ecological conditions fade with time. Using data about seven different taxa, we show that ecological gradients initiated by wildfires up to three centuries earlier affect biotic recovery after variable retention harvest in the boreal mixedwood forest. First, we show that fire history over the last 300 years is reflected in pre-harvest species-specific...

Data from: Incorporating interspecific competition into species-distribution mapping by upward scaling of small-scale model projections to the landscape

Mark Baah-Acheamfour, Charles P. A. Bourque, Fan-Rui Meng, D. Edwin Swift & Charles P.-A. Bourque
There are a number of overarching questions and debate in the scientific community concerning the importance of biotic interactions in species distribution models at large spatial scales. In this paper, we present a framework for revising the potential distribution of tree species native to the Western Ecoregion of Nova Scotia, Canada, by integrating the long-term effects of interspecific competition into an existing abiotic-factor-based definition of potential species distribution (PSD). The PSD model is developed by...

Data from: Lianas abundance is positively related with the avian acoustic community in tropical dry forests

Branko Hilje, Shauna Stack & Arturo Sánchez-Azofeifa
Dry forests are important sources of biodiversity where lianas are highly abundant given their ability to grow during times of drought and as a result of secondary growth processes. Lianas provide food and shelter for fauna such as birds, but there are no studies assessing the influence of liana abundance on birds in dry forests. Here we evaluate the influence of liana abundance on the avian acoustic community in the dry forests of Costa Rica...

Data from: Range contraction and increasing isolation of a polar bear subpopulation in an era of sea-ice loss

Kristin L. Laidre, Erik W. Born, Stephen N. Atkinson, Øystein Wiig, Liselotte W. Andersen, Nicholas J. Lunn, Markus Dyck, Eric V. Regehr, Richard McGovern & Patrick Heagerty
Climate change is expected to result in range shifts and habitat fragmentation for many species. In the Arctic, loss of sea ice will reduce barriers to dispersal or eliminate movement corridors, resulting in increased connectivity or geographic isolation with sweeping implications for conservation. We used satellite telemetry, data from individually marked animals (research and harvest), and microsatellite genetic data to examine changes in geographic range, emigration, and interpopulation connectivity of the Baffin Bay (BB) polar...

Data from: Cross-platform compatibility of de novo-aligned SNPs in a non-model butterfly genus

Erin O. Campbell, Corey S. Davis, Julian R. Dupuis, Kevin Muirhead, Felix A.H. Sperling & Felix A. H. Sperling
High-throughput sequencing methods for genotyping genome-wide markers are being rapidly adopted for phylogenetics of non-model organisms in conservation and biodiversity studies. However, the reproducibility of SNP genotyping and degree of marker overlap or compatibility between datasets from different methodologies have not been tested in non-model systems. Using double-digest restriction site associated DNA sequencing, we sequenced a common set of 22 specimens from the butterfly genus Speyeria on two different Illumina platforms, using two variations of...

Data from: Humans recognize emotional arousal in vocalizations across all classes of terrestrial vertebrates: evidence for acoustic universals

Piera Filippi, Jenna V. Congdon, John Hoang, Daniel Liu Bowling, Stephan A. Reber, Andrius Pašukonis, Marisa Hoeschele, Sebastian Ocklenburg, Bart De Boer, Christopher B. Sturdy, Albert Newen & Onur Gunturkun
Writing over a century ago, Darwin hypothesized that vocal expression of emotion dates back to our earliest terrestrial ancestors. If this hypothesis is true, we should expect to find cross-species acoustic universals in emotional vocalizations. Studies suggest that acoustic attributes of aroused vocalizations are shared across many mammalian species, and that humans can use these attributes to infer emotional content. But do these acoustic attributes extend to non-mammalian vertebrates? In this study, we asked human...

Data from: Continental divide: predicting climate-mediated fragmentation and biodiversity loss in the boreal forest

Dennis L. Murray, Michael J.L. Peers, Yasmine N. Majchrzak, Morgan Wehtje, Catarina Ferreira, Rob S.A. Pickles, Jeffrey R. Row, Daniel H. Thornton, Michael J. L. Peers & Rob S. A. Pickles
Climate change threatens natural landscapes through shifting distribution and abundance of species and attendant change in the structure and function of ecosystems. However, it remains unclear how climate-mediated variation in species' environmental niche space may lead to large-scale fragmentation of species distributions, altered meta-population dynamics and gene flow, and disrupted ecosystem integrity. Such change may be especially relevant when species distributions are restricted either spatially or to a narrow environmental niche, or when environments are...

Data from: Genetic population structure of the round whitefish (Prosopium cylindraceum) in North America: multiple markers reveal glacial refugia and regional subdivision.

Thomas D. Morgan, Carly F. Graham, Andrew G. McArthur, Amogelang R. Raphenya, Douglas R. Boreham, Richard G. Manzon, Joanna Y. Wilson, Stacey L. Lance, Kimberly L. Howland, Paul H. Patrick & Christopher M. Somers
Round whitefish (Prosopium cylindraceum) have a broad, disjunct range across northern North America and Eurasia, and little is known about their genetic population structure. We performed genetic analyses of round whitefish from 17 sites across its range using nine microsatellites, two mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) loci, and 4918 to 8835 single-nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) loci. Our analyses identified deep phylogenetic division between eastern and western portions of the range, likely indicative of origins from at least two...

Data from: Effects of habitat quality and access management on the density of a recovering grizzly bear population

Clayton Lamb, Garth Mowat, Aaron Reid, Laura Smit, Michael Proctor, Bruce N. McLellan, Scott E. Nielsen & Stan Boutin
Human activities have dramatic effects on the distribution and abundance of wildlife. Increased road densities and human presence in wilderness areas have elevated human-caused mortality of grizzly bears and reduced bears' use. Management agencies frequently attempt to reduce human-caused mortality by managing road density and thus human access, but the effectiveness of these actions is rarely assessed. We combined systematic, DNA-based mark–recapture techniques with spatially explicit capture–recapture models to estimate population size of a threatened...

Data from: Roads elicit negative movement and habitat-selection responses by wolverines (Gulo gulo luscus)

Matthew A. Scrafford, Tal Avgar, Rick Heeres & Mark S. Boyce
Wildlife behavior when crossing roads is likely to mirror natural responses to predation risk including not responding, pausing, avoiding, or increasing speed during crossing. We generated coarse-scale behavioral predictions based on these expectations that could be assessed with GPS radiotelemetry. We evaluated our predictions using an integrated step-selection analysis of wolverine (Gulo gulo luscus) space use in relation to spatially and temporally dynamic vehicle traffic on industrial roads in northern Alberta. We compared support for...

Data from: Mapping tropical dry forest succession using multiple criteria spectral mixture analysis

Sen Cao, Qiuyan Yu, Arturo Sanchez-Azofeifa, Jilu Feng, Benoit Rivard & Zhujun Gu
Tropical dry forests (TDFs) in the Americas are considered the first frontier of economic development with less than 1% of their total original coverage under protection. Accordingly, accurate estimates of their spatial extent, fragmentation, and degree of regeneration are critical in evaluating the success of current conservation policies. This study focused on a well-protected secondary TDF in Santa Rosa National Park (SRNP) Environmental Monitoring Super Site, Guanacaste, Costa Rica. We used spectral signature analysis of...

Data from: A new genus of horse from Pleistocene North America

Peter D. Heintzman, Grant D. Zazula, Ross D.E. MacPhee, Eric Scott, James A. Cahill, Brianna K. McHorse, Joshua D. Kapp, Mathias Stiller, Matthew J. Wooller, Ludovic Orlando, John R. Southon, Duane G. Froese, Beth Shapiro & John Southon
The extinct “New World stilt-legged”, or NWSL, equids constitute a perplexing group of Pleistocene horses endemic to North America. Their slender distal limb bones resemble those of Asiatic asses, such as the Persian onager. Previous palaeogenetic studies, however, have suggested a closer relationship to caballine horses than to Asiatic asses. Here, we report complete mitochondrial and partial nuclear genomes from NWSL equids from across their geographic range. Although multiple NWSL equid species have been named,...

Data from: Clones or clans: the genetic structure of a deep-sea sponge, Aphrocallistes vastus, in unique sponge reefs of British Columbia, Canada

Rachel R. Brown, Corey S. Davis & Sally P. Leys
Understanding patterns of reproduction, dispersal and recruitment in deep-sea communities is increasingly important with the need to manage resource extraction and conserve species diversity. Glass sponges are usually found in deep water (>1000 m) worldwide but form kilometre-long reefs on the continental shelf of British Columbia and Alaska that are under threat from trawling and resource exploration. Due to their deep-water habitat, larvae have not yet been found and the level of genetic connectivity between...

Registration Year

  • 2017

Resource Types

  • Dataset


  • University of Alberta
  • Natural Resources Canada
  • University of British Columbia
  • University of Saskatchewan
  • Aarhus University
  • Simon Fraser University
  • Ministry of Forests Lands and Natural Resource Operations
  • Canadian Forest Service
  • University of New Brunswick
  • Helmholtz Centre for Environmental Research