48 Works

Data from: Predictable males and unpredictable females: repeatability of sociability in eastern water dragons

Kasha Strickland & Celine H. Frère
There is growing evidence for consistent among-individual variation in individual sociability (e.g., tendency to be sociable) in a number of species. However, sexes often differ in their social behaviors, as well as the selection pressures which they experience. This may translate into differences in repeatability of sociability, although this has not yet been tested. Here, we investigated whether eastern water dragons (Intellegama leseurii) exhibited evidence of consistent among-individual variation (i.e., repeatability) in 4 different measurements...

Data from: Fresh Is best: accurate SNP genotyping from koala scats

Anthony J. Schultz, Romane H. Cristescu, Bethan L. Littleford-Colquhoun, Damian Jaccoud & Celine H. Frere
Maintaining genetic diversity is a crucial component in conserving threatened species. For the iconic Australian koala, there is little genetic information on wild populations that is not either skewed by biased sampling methods (e.g. sampling effort skewed towards urban areas) or of limited usefulness due to low numbers of microsatellites used. The ability to genotype DNA extracted from koala scats using next-generation sequencing technology will not only help resolve location sample bias but also improve...

Data from: Presence of kin-biased social associations in a lizard with no parental care

Carmen Piza Roca, Kasha Strickland, Nicola Kent & Celine H. Frere
Numerous studies have observed kin-biased social associations in a variety of species. Many of these studies have focussed on species exhibiting parental care, which may facilitate the transmission of the social environment from parents to offspring. This becomes problematic when disentangling whether kin-biased associations are driven by kin recognition, or are a product of transmission of the social environment during ontogeny, or a combination of both. Studying kin-biased associations in systems that lack parental care...

Inbreeding and disease avoidance in a free‐ranging koala population

Anthony Schultz, Romane H. Cristescu, Jon Hanger, Jo Loader & Celine H. Frère
Habitat destruction and fragmentation are increasing globally, forcing surviving species into small, isolated populations. Isolated populations typically experience heightened inbreeding risk, and associated inbreeding depression and population decline; although individuals in these populations may mitigate these risks through inbreeding avoidance strategies. For koalas, as dietary specialists already under threat in the northern parts of their range, increased habitat fragmentation and associated inbreeding costs are of great conservation concern. Koalas are known to display passive inbreeding...

Genomic evidence of introgression and adaptation in a model subtropical tree species, Eucalyptus grandis

Marja Mostert-O'Neill, Sharon Reynolds, Juan Acosta, David Lee, Justin Borevitz & Alexander Myburg
The genetic consequences of adaptation to changing environments can be deciphered using landscape genomics, which may help predict species’ responses to global climate change. Towards this, we used genome-wide SNP marker analysis to determine population structure and patterns of genetic differentiation in terms of neutral and adaptive genetic variation in the natural range of Eucalyptus grandis, a widely cultivated subtropical and temperate species, serving as genomic reference for the genus. We analysed introgression patterns at...

Forest diversity and structure in regenerating secondary forests after shifting cultivation abandonment in the Philippines uplands

Sharif Mukul, John Herbohn & Jennifer Firn
We investigated parameters of forest diversity and structure along a fallow age gradient in secondary forests regenerating after shifting cultivation abandonment. We first measured the tree diversity and forest structure indices in regenerating secondary forests and old-growth forest. We then measured the recovery of tree diversity and forest structure parameters in relation to the old-growth forest. Finally, using linear mixed effect models (LMM), we assessed the effect of different environmental variables on the recovery of...

Data from: Crocodile social environments dictated by male philopatry

Cameron Baker, Céline Frère, Craig Franklin, Hamish Campbell, Terri Irwin & Ross Dwyer
Examining the social behaviors of solitary species can be challenging due to the rarity in which interactions occur and the large and often inaccessible areas which these animals inhabit. As shared space-use is a prerequisite for the expression of social behaviors, we can gain insights into the social environments of solitary species by examining the degree of spatial overlap between individuals. Over a 10-year period, we examined how spatial overlap amongst 105 estuarine crocodiles Crocodylus...

Underlying data for 'Rapid molecular assays for the detection of the four dengue viruses in infected mosquitoes'

Joanne Macdonald, Madeeha Ahmed, Nina Pollak, Andrew Van Den Hurk, Leon Hugo & Jody Hobson-Peters
The pantropic emergence of severe dengue disease can partly be attributed to the co-circulation of different dengue viruses (DENVs) in the same geographical location. Effective monitoring for circulation of each of the four DENVs is critical to inform disease mitigation strategies. In low resource settings, this can be effectively achieved by utilizing inexpensive, rapid, sensitive and specific assays to detect viruses in mosquito populations. In this study, we developed four rapid DENV tests with direct...

Floral attraction and flower visitors of a subcanopy tropical rainforest tree, F. picrosperma_Data

Elektra Grant, Helen Wallace, Peter Brooks, Chris Burwell, Paul Reddell & Steven Ogbourne
1. Flowering plants in tropical rainforests rely heavily on pollen vectors for successful reproduction. Research into pollination systems in tropical rainforests is dominated by canopy species, while subcanopy plant-pollinator interactions remain under-represented. The microclimate beneath the rainforest canopy is characterised by low light levels and is markedly different from the canopy environment that receives more light energy. 2. We studied the floral attractants and floral visitors of a dioecious, subcanopy tree, Fontainea picrosperma (Euphorbiaceae) in...

Data from: Genome-wide scans detect adaptation to aridity in a widespread forest tree species.

Dorothy A. Steane, Brad M. Potts, Elizabeth McLean, Suzanne M. Prober, William D. Stock, René E. Vaillancourt & Margaret Byrne
Patterns of adaptive variation within plant species are best studied through common garden experiments, but these are costly and time-consuming, especially for trees that have long generation times. We explored whether genome-wide scanning technology combined with outlier marker detection could be used to detect adaptation to climate and provide an alternative to common garden experiments. As a case study, we sampled nine provenances of the widespread forest tree species, Eucalyptus tricarpa, across an aridity gradient...

Data from: City life alters the gut microbiome and stable isotope profiling of the eastern water dragon (Intellagama lesueurii)

Bethan Littleford-Colquhoun, Laura Weyrich & Celine Frere
Urbanisation is one of the most significant threats to biodiversity, due to the rapid and large-scale environmental alterations it imposes on the natural landscape. It is, therefore, imperative that we understand the consequences of, and mechanisms by which, species can respond to it. In recent years, research has shown that plasticity of the gut microbiome may be an important mechanism by which animals can adapt to environmental change, yet empirical evidence of this in wild...

Data from: Can dominance genetic variance be ignored in evolutionary quantitative genetic analyses of wild populations?

Barbara Class & Jon Brommer
Accurately estimating genetic variance components is important for studying evolution in the wild. Empirical work on domesticated and wild outbred populations suggests that dominance genetic variance represents a substantial part of genetic variance, and theoretical work predicts that ignoring dominance can inflate estimates of additive genetic variance. Whether this issue is pervasive in natural systems is unknown, because we lack estimates of dominance variance in wild populations obtained in situ. Here, we estimate dominance and...

Heterogeneity in resource competition covaries with individual variation in long-term social relationships

Alexis L Levengood, Kasha Strickland, Vivienne Foroughirad, Janet Mann, Romane H. Cristescu, Ewa Krzyszczyk & Celine H. Frere
Resource competition among conspecifics is central to social evolution, as it serves as one of the primary selective pressures of group living. This is because the degree of competition for resources impacts the costs and benefits of social interactions. Despite this, how heterogeneity in resource competition drives variation in the type and quantity of long-term social relationships individuals foster has been overlooked. By measuring male mating competition and female foraging competition in a highly social,...

Tree abundance in eight 1-ha tropical forest plots in northeastern Costa Rica from 1997-2017

Robin Chazdon
In 1997, four 1-ha plots were established in secondary forests (12-25 yr since establishment on former pasture) in northeastern Costa Rica, in and around La Selva Research Station. In 2005, four additional plots were established, two in 10-yr old sites and two in old growth sites. The dataset contains information for 155,378 trees. Each year, from 1997-2017 all stems with a diameter of breast height ≥ 5 cm were censused in each site within 100...

Data from: Fitness benefits of male dominance behaviours depend on the degree of inbreeding in a polyandrous lizard

C Piza-Roca, D Schoeman & C Frere
In polyandrous species, sexual selection extends beyond mating competition to selection for egg fertilization. As a result, the degree to which factors influencing mating success impact overall reproductive success becomes variable. Here, we used a longitudinal behavioural and genetic dataset for a population of eastern water dragons (Intellagama lesueurii) to investigate the degree to which male dominance, a pre-mating selection trait, influences overall reproductive success, measured as the number of surviving offspring. Moreover, we examine...

Data from: Is MHC diversity a better marker for conservation than neutral genetic diversity? a case study of two contrasting dolphin populations

Oliver Manlik, Michael Krutzen, Anna M. Kopps, Janet Mann, Lars Bejder, Simon J. Allen, Celine Frere, Richard C. Connor & William B. Sherwin
Genetic diversity is essential for populations to adapt to changing environments. Measures of genetic diversity are often based on selectively neutral markers, such as microsatellites. Genetic diversity to guide conservation management, however, is better reflected by adaptive markers, including genes of the major histocompatibility complex (MHC). Our aim was to assess MHC and neutral genetic diversity in two contrasting bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops aduncus) populations in Western Australia—one apparently viable population with high reproductive output (Shark...

Data from: Towards more effective integration of tropical forest restoration and conservation

Robin L. Chazdon.
Conservation and restoration interventions can be mutually reinforcing and are converging through an increased focus on social dimensions. This paper examines how to more effectively integrate the complementary goals of conservation and restoration of tropical forests. Forest conservation and restoration interventions are integral components of a broad approach to forest ecosystem and landscape management that aims to maintain and restore key ecological processes and enhance human well-being, while minimizing biodiversity loss. The forest transition model...

Data from: Regional drivers of clutch loss reveal important trade-offs for beach-nesting birds

Brooke Maslo, Thomas A. Schlacher, Weston A. Michael, Chantal M. Huijbers, Chris Anderson, Ben L. Gilby, Andrew D. Olds, Rod M. Connolly, David S. Schoeman & Michael A. Weston
Coastal birds are critical ecosystem constituents on sandy shores, yet are threatened by depressed reproductive success resulting from direct and indirect anthropogenic and natural pressures. Few studies examine clutch fate across the wide range of environments experienced by birds; instead, most focus at the small site scale. We examine survival of model shorebird clutches as an index of true clutch survival at a regional scale (∼200 km), encompassing a variety of geomorphologies, predator communities, and...

Data from: Mesoscale activity facilitates energy gain in a top predator

Briana Abrahms, Kylie L. Scales, Elliott L. Hazen, Steven J. Bograd, Robert S. Schick, Patrick W. Robinson & Daniel P. Costa
How animal movement decisions interact with the distribution of resources to shape individual performance is a key question in ecology. However, links between spatial and behavioural ecology and fitness consequences are poorly understood because the outcomes of individual resource selection decisions, such as energy intake, are rarely measured. In the open ocean, mesoscale features (~10-100 km) such as fronts and eddies can aggregate prey and thereby drive the distribution of foraging vertebrates through bottom-up biophysical...

Data from: Invasive pathogen drives host population collapse: effects of a travelling wave of sarcoptic mange on bare-nosed wombats

Alynn M. Martin, Christopher P. Burridge, Janeane Ingram, Tamieka A. Fraser & Scott Carver
1.Emerging and invasive pathogens can have long-lasting impacts on susceptible wildlife populations, including localised collapse and extirpation. Management of threatening disease is of widespread interest and requires knowledge of spatiotemporal patterns of pathogen spread. 2.Theory suggests disease spread often occurs via two patterns: homogenous mixing and travelling waves. However, high resolution empirical data demonstrating localised (within population) disease spread patterns are rare. 3.This study examined the spread of sarcoptic mange (aetiological agent Sarcoptes scabiei) in...

Data from: Maternal nesting behaviour in city dragons: a species with temperature-dependent sex determination

Nicola Kent, Romane H. Cristescu, Carme Piza-Roca, Bethan L. Littleford-Colquhoun, Kasha Strickland & Céline H. Frère
Urban environments present some of the greatest challenges to species survival. This is particularly true for species that exhibit thermally sensitive traits, such as temperature-dependent sex determination (TSD). This is because urban environments not only present species with entirely novel ecosystems, but species will also experience increased temperatures. These temperature increases may result not only in offspring mortality, but also skewed population sex ratios. To persist in cities, urban dwellers with TSD will therefore need...

Data from: Genome-wide scans reveal cryptic population structure in a dry-adapted eucalypt

Dorothy A. Steane, Brad M. Potts, Elizabeth McLean, Lesley Collins, Suzanne M. Prober, William D. Stock, René E. Vaillancourt & Margaret Byrne
Genome-wide DArTseq scans of 268 individuals of Eucalyptus salubris, distributed along an aridity gradient in southwestern Australia, revealed cryptic population structure that appears to signal hitherto unappreciated ecotypic differentiation and barriers to gene flow. Genome-wide scans were undertaken on 30 wild-sampled individuals from each of nine populations; 10 individuals per population were measured for habit and functional traits. DArTseq generated 16,122 high-quality markers, of which 56.3 % located to E. grandis chromosomes. Genetic affinities of...

Data from: Mitochondrial genome fragmentation unites the parasitic lice of eutherian mammals

Fan Song, Hu Li, Guo-Hua Liu, Wei Wang, Peter James, Douglas D. Colwell, Anette Tran, Siyu Gong, Wanzhi Cai & Renfu Shao
Organelle genome fragmentation has been found in a wide range of eukaryotic lineages; however, its use in phylogenetic reconstruction has not been demonstrated. We explored the use of mitochondrial (mt) genome fragmentation in resolving the controversial suborder-level phylogeny of parasitic lice (order Phthiraptera). There are ~5,000 species of parasitic lice in four suborders (Amblycera, Ischnocera, Rhyncophthirina and Anoplura), which infest mammals and birds. The phylogenetic relationships among these suborders are unresolved despite decades of studies....

Collision between biological process and statistical analysis revealed by mean-centering

David Westneat, Yimen Araya-Ajoy, Hassen Allegue, Barbara Class, Niels Dingemanse, Ned Dochtermann, Laszlo Garamszegi, Julien Martin, Shinichi Nakagawa, Denis Reale & Holger Schielzeth
1. Animal ecologists often collect hierarchically-structured data and analyze these with linear mixed-effects models. Specific complications arise when the effect sizes of covariates vary on multiple levels (e.g., within vs among subjects). Mean-centering of covariates within subjects offers a useful approach in such situations, but is not without problems. 2. A statistical model represents a hypothesis about the underlying biological process. Mean-centering within clusters assumes that the lower level responses (e.g. within subjects) depend on...

Using genomics to optimise and evaluate the performance of underwater forest restoration

Georgina Wood, Ezequiel M. Marzinelli, Adriana Verges, Alexandra Campbell, Peter Steinberg & Melinda Coleman
1. Restoration is an emerging intervention to reverse the degradation and loss of marine habitat-formers and the ecosystem services they underpin. Current best practice seeks to restore populations by transplanting donor individuals chosen to replicate genetic diversity and structure of extant, nearby populations. However, genetic characteristics are rarely empirically examined across generations, despite their potential role in influencing restoration success. 2. We used genomics to design a restoration program for lost underwater forests of Phyllospora...

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