481 Works

Data from: On and off the rocks: persistence and ecological diversification in a tropical Australian lizard radiation

Paul M. Oliver, Lauren G. Ashman, Sarah Bank, Rebecca J. Laver, Renae C. Pratt, Leonardo G. Tedeschi & Craig C. Moritz
Background: Congruent patterns in the distribution of biodiversity between regions or habitats suggest that key factors such as climatic and topographic variation may predictably shape evolutionary processes. In a number of tropical and arid biomes, genetic analyses are revealing deeper and more localised lineage diversity in rocky ranges than surrounding habitats. Two potential drivers of localised endemism in rocky areas are refugial persistence through climatic change, or ecological diversification and specialisation. Here we examine how...

Data from: A comprehensive and user-friendly framework for 3D-data visualisation in invertebrates and other organisms

Thomas L. Semple, Rod Peakall & Nikolai J. Tatarnic
Methods for 3D‐imaging of biological samples are experiencing unprecedented development, with tools such as X‐ray micro‐computed tomography (μCT) becoming more accessible to biologists. These techniques are inherently suited to small subjects and can simultaneously image both external and internal morphology, thus offering considerable benefits for invertebrate research. However, methods for visualising 3D‐data are trailing behind the development of tools for generating such data. Our aim in this article is to make the processing, visualisation and...

Data from: Genome-wide SNPs reveal fine-scale differentiation among wingless alpine stonefly populations, and introgression between winged and wingless forms

Nicolas Dussex, Aaron Chuah & Jonathan M. Waters
Insect flight-loss is a repeated phenomenon in alpine habitats, where wing reduction is thought to enhance local recruitment and increase fecundity. One predicted consequence of flight loss is reduced dispersal ability, which should lead to population genetic differentiation and perhaps ultimately to speciation. Using a dataset of 15,123 SNP loci, we present comparative analyses of fine-scale population structure in co-distributed Zelandoperla stonefly species, across three parallel altitudinal transects in New Zealand's Rock and Pillar mountain...

Data from: Personal information about danger trumps social information from avian alarm calls

Jessica R. McLachlan, Chaminda P. Ratnayake & Robert D. Magrath
Information about predators can mean the difference between life and death, but prey face the challenge of integrating personal information about predators with social information from the alarm calls of others. This challenge might even affect the structure of interspecific information networks: species vary in response to alarm calls, potentially because different foraging ecologies constrain the acquisition of personal information. However, the hypothesis that constrained personal information explains a greater response to alarm calls has...

Data from: Parasitic plants have increased rates of molecular evolution across all three genomes

Lindell Bromham, Peter F. Cowman & Robert Lanfear
Background: Theoretical models and experimental evidence suggests that rates of nucleotide substitution could be raised in parasitic organisms compared to non-parasitic taxa. Parasitic plants provide an ideal test for these predictions, as there are at least a dozen independent origins of the parasitic lifestyle in angiosperms. Studies of a number of parasitic plant lineages have suggested faster rates of molecular evolution, but the results of some studies have been mixed. Comparative analysis of all parasitic...

Data from: Evaluating the performance of anchored hybrid enrichment at the tips of the tree of life: a phylogenetic analysis of Australian Eugongylus group scincid lizards

Matthew C. Brandley, Jason G. Bragg, Sonal Singhal, David G. Chapple, Charlotte K. Jennings, Alan R. Lemmon, Emily M. Lemmon, Michael B. Thompson & Craig Moritz
Background: High-throughput sequencing using targeted enrichment and transcriptomic methods enables rapid construction of phylogenomic data sets incorporating hundreds to thousands of loci. These advances have enabled access to an unprecedented amount of nucleotide sequence data, but they also pose new questions. Given that the loci targeted for enrichment are often highly conserved, how informative are they at different taxonomic scales, especially at the intraspecific / phylogeographic scale? We investigate this question using Australian scincid lizards...

Data from: Data gaps and opportunities for comparative and conservation biology

Dalia A. Conde, Johanna Staerk, Fernando Colchero, Rita Da Silva, Jonas Schöley, H. Maria Baden, Lionel Jouvet, John E. Fa, Hassan Syed, Eelke Jongejans, Shai Meiri, Jean-Michel Gaillard, Scott Chamberlain, Jonathan Wilcken, Owen R. Jones, Johan P. Dahlgren, Ulrich K. Steiner, Lucie M. Bland, Ivan Gomez-Mestre, Jean-Dominique Lebreton, Jaime González Vargas, Nate Flesness, Vladimir Canudas-Romo, Roberto Salguero-Gómez, Onnie Byers … & James W. Vaupel
Biodiversity loss is a major challenge. Over the past century, the average rate of vertebrate extinction has been about 100-fold higher than the estimated background rate and population declines continue to increase globally. Birth and death rates determine the pace of population increase or decline, thus driving the expansion or extinction of a species. Design of species conservation policies hence depends on demographic data (e.g., for extinction risk assessments or estimation of harvesting quotas). However,...

Data from: The unexpected genetic mating system of the red‐backed toadlet (Pseudophryne coriacea): a species with prolonged terrestrial breeding and cryptic reproductive behaviour

Daniel M. O'Brien, J. Scott Keogh, Aimee J. Silla & Phillip G. Byrne
Molecular technologies have revolutionised our classification of animal-mating systems, yet we still know very little about the genetic-mating systems of many vertebrate groups. It is widely believed that anuran amphibians have the highest reproductive diversity of all vertebrates, yet genetic mating systems have been studied in less than one percent of all described species. Here, we use SNPs to quantify the genetic-mating system of the terrestrial breeding red-backed toadlet Pseudophryne coriacea. In this species, breeding...

Data from: More partners, more ranges: generalist legumes spread more easily around the globe

Tia L. Harrison, Anna K. Simonsen, John R. Stinchcombe & Megan E. Frederickson
How does mutualism affect range expansion? On one hand, mutualists might thrive in new habitats thanks to the resources, stress tolerance, or defense provided by their partners. On the other, specialized mutualists might fail to find compatible partners beyond their range margins, limiting further spread. A recent global analysis of legume ranges found that non-symbiotic legumes have been successfully introduced to more ranges than legumes that form symbioses with rhizobia, but there is still abundant...

Data from: Diversification across biomes in a continental lizard radiation

Lauren G. Ashman, Jason G. Bragg, Paul Doughty, Mark Norman Hutchinson, Sarah Bank, Nick Matzke, Paul M. Oliver, Craig Moritz, N. J. Matzke & P. Oliver
Ecological opportunity is a powerful driver of evolutionary diversification, and predicts rapid lineage and phenotypic diversification following colonisation of competitor-free habitats. Alternatively, topographic or environmental heterogeneity could be key to generating and sustaining diversity. We explore these hypotheses in a widespread lineage of Australian lizards: the Gehyra variegata group. This clade occurs across two biomes: the Australian monsoonal tropics (AMT), where it overlaps a separate, larger bodied clade of Gehyra and is largely restricted to...

Data from: Taxon cycle predictions supported by model-based inference in Indo-Pacific trap-jaw ants (Hymenoptera: Formicidae: Odontomachus)

Pável Matos-Maraví, Nicholas J. Matzke, Fredrick J. Larabee, Ronald M. Clouse, Ward C. Wheeler, Daniela Magdalena Sorger, Andrew V. Suarez & Milan Janda
Non-equilibrium dynamics and non-neutral processes, such as trait-dependent dispersal, are often missing from quantitative island biogeography models despite their potential explanatory value. One of the most influential non-equilibrium models is the taxon cycle, but it has been difficult to test its validity as a general biogeographical framework. Here, we test predictions of the taxon-cycle model using six expected phylogenetic patterns and a time-calibrated phylogeny of Indo-Pacific Odontomachus (Hymenoptera: Formicidae: Ponerinae), one of the ant genera...

Data from: How to quantify (the response to) sexual selection on traits

Jonathan M. Henshaw, Michael D. Jennions & Loeske E. B. Kruuk
Natural selection operates via fitness components like mating success, fecundity and longevity, which can be understood as intermediaries in the causal process linking traits to fitness. Sexual selection occurs when traits influence mating or fertilisation success, which, in turn, influences fitness. We show how to quantify both these steps in a single path analysis, leading to better estimates of the strength of sexual selection. Our model controls for confounding variables, such as body size or...

Data from: Spatially heterogeneous impact of climate change on small mammals of montane California

Kevin C. Rowe, Karen M. C. Rowe, Morgan W. Tingley, Michelle S. Koo, James L. Patton, Christopher J. Conroy, John D. Perrine, Steven R. Beissinger & Craig Moritz
Resurveys of historical collecting localities have revealed range shifts, primarily leading edge expansions, which have been attributed to global warming. However, there have been few spatially replicated community-scale resurveys testing whether species' responses are spatially consistent. Here we repeated early twentieth century surveys of small mammals along elevational gradients in northern, central and southern regions of montane California. Of the 34 species we analysed, 25 shifted their ranges upslope or downslope in at least one...

Data from: Inbreeding avoidance, patch isolation and matrix permeability influence dispersal and settlement choices by male agile antechinus in a fragmented landscape

Sam C. Banks & David B. Lindenmayer
1. Animal dispersal is highly non-random and has important implications for the dynamics of populations in fragmented habitat. We identified interpatch dispersal events from genetic tagging, parentage analyses and assignment tests and modelled the factors associated with apparent emigration and post-dispersal settlement choices by individual male agile antechinus (Antechinus agilis, a marsupial carnivore of south-east Australian forests). 2. Emigration decisions were best modelled with on data patch isolation and inbreeding risk. 3. The choice of...

Bandicoots return to Booderee: initial survival, dispersal, home range and habitat preferences of reintroduced southern brown bandicoots (eastern sub species; Isoodon obesulus obesulus)

Natasha Robinson, C. I. MacGregor, B. A. Hradsky, N. Dexter & D. B. Lindenmayer
Context Reintroductions can be an effective means of re-establishing locally extinct or declining faunal populations. However, incomplete knowledge of variables influencing survival and establishment can limit successful outcomes. Aim We aimed to examine the factors (e.g. sex, body mass, release order) influencing the survival, dispersal, home range and habitat selection of reintroduced southern brown bandicoots (eastern subspecies; Isoodon obesulus obesulus) into an unfenced, predator-managed environment in south-eastern Australia (Booderee National Park). Methods Over 2 weeks...

Weighing the cost: the impact of serial heatwaves on body mass in a small Australian passerine

Lynda Sharpe, Belinda Cale & Janet Gardner
Rising temperatures pose a grave risk to arid zone birds because they are already living close to their physiological limits and must balance water conservation against the need for evaporative cooling. We assess how extreme temperatures affect a wild population of small passerines by monitoring daily mass change in individual Jacky Winters (a small Australasian robin; Microeca fascinans) across a series of severe heatwaves that afflicted southern Australia in the summer of 2018-19. Daily maximum...

Data S1 from \"Global scale drivers of crop visitor diversity and the historical development of agriculture.\"

Julian Brown & Saul Cunningham
Understanding diversity in flower visitor assemblages helps us improve pollination of crops and support better biodiversity conservation outcomes. Much recent research has focused on drivers of crop-visitor diversity operating over spatial scales from fields to landscapes, such as pesticide and habitat management, while drivers operating over larger scales of continents and biogeographic realms are virtually unknown. Flower and visitor traits influence attraction of pollinators to flowers, and evolve in the context of associations that can...

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...

Prioritising source populations for supplementing genetic diversity of reintroduced southern brown bandicoots Isoodon obesulus obesulus

Natasha M. Robinson & Sam C. Banks
Reintroduction programs can benefit from optimisation of source populations to maximise genetic diversity. Here, we report an approach to guide genetic supplementation of founder individuals to maximise genetic diversity in a reintroduction program for a nationally threatened Australian ground-dwelling marsupial, the southern brown bandicoot (eastern subspecies), Isoodon obesulus obesulus. Following local extinction ~ 100 years earlier, founding individuals were reintroduced to Booderee National Park in south-eastern Australia over three years from the nearest viable wild...

Enhanced high-field nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy

Gottfried Otting
Nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) spectroscopy is the most powerful analytical tool in chemistry, ranging from small molecules to 3D structure determinations of large biomolecules such as proteins and DNA. This application is for a probe that offers the highest possible sensitivity of detection, about 2.5 times higher than the current probe, which is a loaned item and partly defect. The new probe is essential to regain full operation of the 800 MHz NMR spectrometer at...

Data from: Small tropical forest trees have a greater capacity to adjust carbon metabolism to long‐term drought than large canopy trees

David Bartholomew, Paulo Bittencourt, Antonio Da Costa, Lindsay Banin, Patrícia Costa, Sarah Coughlin, Tomas Domingues, Leandro Ferreira, André Giles, Maurizio Mencuccini, Lina Mercado, Raquel Miatto, Alex Oliveira, Rafael Oliveira, Patrick Meir & Lucy Rowland
The response of small understory trees to long‐term drought is vital in determining the future composition, carbon stocks and dynamics of tropical forests. Long‐term drought is, however, also likely to expose understory trees to increased light availability driven by drought‐induced mortality. Relatively little is known about the potential for understory trees to adjust their physiology to both decreasing water and increasing light availability. We analysed data on maximum photosynthetic capacity (J max, V cmax), leaf...

Future-proofing the koala: synergizing genomic and environmental data for effective species management

Matthew Lott, Belinda Wright, Linda Neaves, Greta Frankham, Siobhan Dennison, Mark Eldridge, Sally Potter, David Alquezar-Planas, Carolyn Hogg, Katherine Belov & Rebecca Johnson
Climatic and evolutionary processes are inextricably linked to conservation. Avoiding extinction in rapidly changing environments often depends upon a species’ capacity to adapt in the face of extreme selective pressures. Here, we employed exon capture and high-throughput next-generation sequencing to investigate the mechanisms underlying population structure and adaptive genetic variation in the koala (Phascolarctos cinereus), an iconic Australian marsupial that represents a unique conservation challenge because it is not uniformly threatened across its range. An...

Southern Greater Glider spotlighting surveys conducted in 2021 in the Victorian Central Highlands Australia

David Lindenmayer
Data used for Elevation, disturbance, and forest type drive the occurrence of a specialist arboreal folivore as published in PLOS ONE. These are the results of Spotlighting surveys for Greater Gliders in the Victorian Central Highlands in Australia.

Data from: Composition of a chemical signalling trait varies with phylogeny and precipitation across an Australian lizard radiation

Stephen Zozaya, Luisa Teasdale, Craig Moritz, Megan Higgie & Conrad Hoskin
The environment presents challenges to the transmission and detection of animal signalling systems, resulting in selective pressures that can drive signal divergence among populations in disparate environments. For chemical signals, climate is a potentially important selective force because factors such as temperature and moisture influence the persistence and detection of chemicals. We investigated an Australian lizard radiation (Heteronotia) to explore relationships between a sexually dimorphic chemical signalling trait (epidermal pore secretions) and two key climate...

Speedy revelations: how alarm calls can convey rapid, reliable information about urgent danger

Jessica McLachlan & Robert Magrath
In the perpetual struggle between high-speed predators and their prey, individuals need to react in the blink of an eye to avoid capture. Alarm calls that warn of danger therefore need to do so sufficiently rapidly that listeners can escape in time. Paradoxically, many species produce more elements in their alarm calls when signalling about more immediate danger, thereby increasing the reliability of transmission of critical information but taking longer to convey the urgent message....

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  • Australian National University
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