531 Works

Data from: Biomechanical and leaf-climate relationships: a comparison of ferns and seed plants

Daniel J. Peppe, Casee R. Lemons, Dana L. Royer, Scott L. Wing, Ian J. Wright, Christopher H. Lusk & Chazelle H. Rhoden
Premise of the study: Relationships of leaf size and shape (physiognomy) with climate have been well characterized for woody non-monocotyledonous angiosperms (dicots), allowing the development of models for estimating paleoclimate from fossil leaves. More recently, petiole width of seed plants has been shown to scale closely with leaf mass. By measuring petiole width and leaf area in fossils, leaf mass per area (MA) can be estimated and an approximate leaf life span inferred. However, little...

Data from: Sex and boldness explain individual differences in spatial learning in a lizard

Pau Carazo, Daniel W. A. Noble, Dani Chandrasoma & Martin J. Whiting
Understanding individual differences in cognitive performance is a major challenge to animal behaviour and cognition studies. We used the Eastern water skink (Eulamprus quoyii) to examine associations between exploration, boldness and individual variability in spatial learning, a dimension of lizard cognition with important bearing on fitness. We show that males perform better than females in a biologically relevant spatial learning task. This is the first evidence for sex differences in learning in a reptile, and...

Data from: Are leaf functional traits “invariant” with plant size, and what is “invariance” anyway?

Charles A. Price, Ian J. Wright, David D. Ackerly, Ülo Niinemets, Peter B. Reich & Erik J. Veneklaas
Studies of size-related plant traits have established a suite of mathematical functions describing whole plant investment and allocation. In parallel, studies of plant “economic spectra” have measured the scaling and variance composition of traits related to the major dimensions of both structure and function. Here we explore the intersection of these two broad areas by exploring the notion that many leaf economic traits are invariant with species differences in adult plant size. Invariant traits are...

Data from: Influences of past climatic changes on historical population structure and demography of a cosmopolitan marine predator, the common dolphin (genus Delphinus)

Ana Amaral, Luciano Beheregaray, Kerstin Bilgmann, Luís Freitas, Kelly Robertson, Marina Sequeira, Karen Stockin, M. M. Coelho & Luciana Möller
Climatic oscillations during the Pleistocene have greatly influenced the distribution and connectivity of many organisms, leading to extinctions but also generating biodiversity. While the effects of such changes have been extensively studied in the terrestrial environment, studies focusing on the marine realm are still scarce. Here we used sequence data from one mitochondrial and five nuclear loci to assess the potential influence of Pleistocene climatic changes on the phylogeography and demographic history of a cosmopolitan...

Data from: The extent and consequences of p-hacking in science

Megan L. Head, Luke Holman, Rob Lanfear, Andrew T. Kahn & Michael D. Jennions
A focus on novel, confirmatory, and statistically significant results leads to substantial bias in the scientific literature. One type of bias, known as “p-hacking,” occurs when researchers collect or select data or statistical analyses until nonsignificant results become significant. Here, we use text-mining to demonstrate that p-hacking is widespread throughout science. We then illustrate how one can test for p-hacking when performing a meta-analysis and show that, while p-hacking is probably common, its effect seems...

Data from: Sexual signals for the colour-blind: cryptic female mantids signal quality through brightness

Katherine L. Barry, Thomas E. White, Darshana N. Rathnayake, Scott A. Fabricant & Marie E. Herberstein
1. Cryptic coloration may evolve in response to selective pressure imposed by predators, yet effective intraspecific communication may require some level of detectability. This creates a tension between the benefits of sexually selected visual traits and the predatory costs imposed by greater conspicuousness, and little is known about how this tension may be ameliorated in highly cryptic species. 2. We explore these competing demands in the false garden mantid Pseudomantis albofimbriata, a colour-blind and seemingly...

Data from: Producers and scroungers: feeding type composition changes with group size in a socially foraging spider

Marlis Dumke, Mariella E. Herberstein, Jutta M. Schneider & Marie E. Herberstein
In groups of socially foraging animals, feeding behaviour may change with group size in response to varying cost-benefit trade-offs. Numerous studies have described group size effects on group-average feeding behaviour, particularly emphasizing an increase in scrounging incidence for larger groups, where individuals (scroungers) feed from the food sources others (producers) discovered. However, individual variation in feeding behaviour remains unconsidered in the vast majority of these studies even though theoretical models presume individuals to specialize in...

Data from: Rates of morphological evolution are heterogeneous in Early Cretaceous birds

Min Wang & Graeme T. Lloyd
The Early Cretaceous is a critical interval in the early history of birds. Exceptional fossils indicate that important evolutionary novelties such as a pygostyle and a keeled sternum had already arisen in Early Cretaceous taxa, bridging much of the morphological gap between Archaeopteryx and crown birds. However, detailed features of basal bird evolution remain obscure because of both the small sample of fossil taxa previously considered and a lack of quantitative studies assessing rates of...

Data from: Trade-offs in juvenile growth potential vs. shade tolerance among subtropical rainforest trees on soils of contrasting fertility

Kerrie M. Sendall, Christopher H. Lusk & Peter B. Reich
Plant adaptation to gradients of light availability involves a well-studied functional trade-off, as does adaptation to gradients of nutrient availability. However, little is known about how these two major trade-offs interact, and thus, it remains unclear whether and how the nature of the growth–shade tolerance trade-off differs on soils of contrasting fertility. We asked whether juvenile growth–shade tolerance trade-offs differed in slope and elevation between tree assemblages on nutrient-rich basalt and nutrient-poor rhyolite soils in...

Data from: Cultural traditions across a migratory network shape the genetic structure of southern right whales around Australia and New Zealand

E. L. Carroll, C. S. Baker, M. Watson, R. Alderman, J. Bannister, O. E. Gaggiotti, D. R. Gröcke, N. Patenaude & R. Harcourt
Fidelity to migratory destinations is an important driver of connectivity in marine and avian species. Here we assess the role of maternally directed learning of migratory habitats, or migratory culture, on the population structure of the endangered Australian and New Zealand southern right whale. Using DNA profiles, comprising mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) haplotypes (500 bp), microsatellite genotypes (17 loci) and sex from 128 individually-identified whales, we find significant differentiation among winter calving grounds based on both...

Data from: Sexual cannibalism increases male material investment in offspring: quantifying terminal reproductive effort in a praying mantis

William D. Brown & Katherine L. Barry
Models of the evolution of sexual cannibalism argue that males may offset the cost of cannibalism if components of the male body are directly allocated to the eggs that they fertilize. We tested this idea in the praying mantid Tenodera sinensis. Males and females were fed differently radiolabelled crickets and allowed to mate. Half of the pairs progressed to sexual cannibalism and we prevented cannibalism in the other half. We assess the relative allocation of...

Data from: Building genetic networks using relatedness information: a novel approach for the estimation of dispersal and characterization of group structure in social animals

Lee Ann Rollins, Lucy E. Browning, Clare E. Holleley, James L. Savage, Andrew F. Russell & Simon C. Griffith
Natal dispersal is an important life history trait driving variation in individual fitness and, therefore, a proper understanding of the factors underlying dispersal behaviour is critical to many fields including population dynamics, behavioural ecology and conservation biology. However, individual dispersal patterns remain difficult to quantify despite many years of research using direct and indirect methods. Here, we quantify dispersal in a single intensively-studied population of the cooperatively breeding chestnut-crowned babbler (Pomatostomus ruficeps) using genetic networks...

Data from: The energetics of life on the deep seafloor

Craig R. McClain, Andrew P. Allen, Derek P. Tittensor & Michael A. Rex
With frigid temperatures and virtually no in situ productivity, the deep oceans, Earth’s largest ecosystem, are especially energy-deprived systems. Our knowledge of the effects of this energy limitation on all levels of biological organization is very incomplete. Here we use the Metabolic Theory of Ecology to examine the relative roles of carbon flux and temperature in influencing metabolic rate, growth rate, lifespan, body size, abundance, biomass, and biodiversity for life on the deep seafloor. We...

Data from: Kin selection, not group augmentation, predicts helping in an obligate cooperatively breeding bird

Lucy E. Browning, Samantha C. Patrick, Lee A. Rollins, Simon C. Griffith & Andrew F. Russell
Kin selection theory has been the central model for understanding the evolution of cooperative breeding, where non-breeders help bear the cost of rearing young. Recently the dominance of this idea has been questioned; particularly in obligate cooperative breeders where breeding without help is uncommon and seldom successful. In such systems, the direct benefits gained through augmenting current group size have been hypothesised to provide a tractable alternative (or addition) to kin selection. However, clear empirical...

Data from: Near-stasis in the long-term diversification of Mesozoic tetrapods

Roger B. J. Benson, Richard J. Butler, John Alroy, Philip D. Mannion, Matthew T. Carrano & Graeme T. Lloyd
How did evolution generate the extraordinary diversity of vertebrates on land? Zero species are known prior to ~380 million years ago, and more than 30,000 are present today. An expansionist model suggests this was achieved by large and unbounded increases, leading to substantially greater diversity in the present than at any time in the geological past. This model contrasts starkly with empirical support for constrained diversification in marine animals, suggesting different macroevolutionary processes on land...

Data from: Estimating morphological diversity and tempo with discrete character-taxon matrices: implementation, challenges, progress, and future directions

Graeme T. Lloyd
Discrete character-taxon matrices are increasingly being used in an attempt to understand the pattern and tempo of morphological evolution; however, methodological sophistication and bespoke software implementations have lagged behind. In the present study, an attempt is made to provide a state-of-the-art description of methodologies and introduce a new R package (Claddis) for performing foundational disparity (morphologic diversity) and rate calculations. Simulations using its core functions show that: (1) of the two most commonly used distance...

Data from: Prolific observer bias in the life sciences: why we need blind data recording

Luke Holman, Megan L. Head, Robert Lanfear & Michael D. Jennions
Observer bias and other “experimenter effects” occur when researchers’ expectations influence study outcome. These biases are strongest when researchers expect a particular result, are measuring subjective variables, and have an incentive to produce data that confirm predictions. To minimize bias, it is good practice to work “blind,” meaning that experimenters are unaware of the identity or treatment group of their subjects while conducting research. Here, using text mining and a literature review, we find evidence...

Data from: Linkage mapping of a polymorphic plumage locus associated with intermorph incompatibility in the Gouldian finch (Erythrura gouldiae)

Kang-Wook Kim, Simon C. Griffith & Terry Burke
Colour polymorphism is known to facilitate speciation but the genetic basis of animal pigmentation and how colour polymorphisms contribute to speciation is poorly understood. Restricted recombination may promote linkage disequilibrium between the colour locus and incompatibility genes. Genomic rearrangement and the position of relevant loci within a chromosome are important factors that influence the frequency of recombination. Therefore, it is important to know the position of the colour locus, gene order and recombination landscape of...

Data from: Association mapping of morphological traits in wild and captive zebra finches: reliable within but not between populations

Ulrich Knief, Holger Schielzeth, Niclas Backstrom, Georg Hemmrich-Stanisak, Michael Wittig, Andre Franke, Simon C. Griffith, Hans Ellegren, Bart Kempenaers & Wolfgang Forstmeier
Identifying causal genetic variants underlying heritable phenotypic variation is a longstanding goal in evolutionary genetics. We previously identified several quantitative trait loci (QTL) for five morphological traits in a captive population of zebra finches (Taeniopygia guttata) by whole-genome linkage mapping. We here follow up on these studies with the aim to narrow down on the quantitative trait variants (QTN) in one wild and three captive populations. First, we performed an association study using 672 single...

Data from: Atypical residency of short-beaked common dolphins (Delphinus delphis) to a shallow, urbanized embayment in south-eastern Australia

Suzanne Mason, Chandra Salgado Kent, David Donnelly, Jeffrey Weir & Kerstin Bilgmann
Short-beaked common dolphins (Delphinus delphis) are typically considered highly mobile, offshore delphinids. This study assessed the residency of a small community of short-beaked common dolphins in the shallow, urbanized Port Phillip Bay, south-eastern Australia. The ability to identify common dolphins by their dorsal fin markings and coloration using photo-identification was also investigated. Systematic and non-systematic boat surveys were undertaken between 2007 and 2014. Results showed that 13 adult common dolphins and their offspring inhabit Port...

Data from: Direct and trans-generational effects of male and female gut microbiota in Drosophila melanogaster

Juliano Morimoto, Stephen J. Simpson & Fleur Ponton
There is increasing evidence of the far-reaching effects of gut bacteria on physiological and behavioural traits, yet the fitness-related consequences of changes in the gut bacteria composition of sexually interacting individuals remain unknown. To address this question, we manipulated the gut microbiota of fruit flies, Drosophila melanogaster, by monoinfecting flies with either Acetobacter pomorum (AP) or Lactobacillus plantarum (LP). Re-inoculated individuals were paired in all treatment combinations. LP-infected males had longer mating duration and induced...

Data from: Habitat filtering determines the functional niche occupancy of plant communities worldwide

Yuanzhi Li, Bill Shipley, Jodi N. Price, Vinícius De L. Dantas, Riin Tamme, Mark Westoby, Andrew Siefert, Brandon S. Schamp, Marko J. Spasojevic, Vincent Jung, Daniel C. Laughlin, Sarah J. Richardson, Yoann Le Bagousse-Pinguet, Christian Schöb, Antonio Gazol, Honor C. Prentice, Nicolas Gross, Jacob Overton, Marcus V. Cianciaruso, Frédérique Louault, Chiho Kamiyama, Tohru Nakashizuka, Kouki Hikosaka, Takehiro Sasaki, Masatoshi Katabuchi … & Marco A. Batalha
How the patterns of niche occupancy vary from species-poor to species-rich communities is a fundamental question in ecology that has a central bearing on the processes that drive patterns of biodiversity. As species richness increases, habitat filtering should constrain the expansion of total niche volume, while limiting similarity should restrict the degree of niche overlap between species. Here, by explicitly incorporating intraspecific trait variability, we investigate the relationship between functional niche occupancy and species richness...

Data from: Lack of genetic introgression between wild and selectively bred Sydney rock oysters Saccostrea glomerata

Jessica A. Thompson, Adam J. Stow, David A. Raftos, JA Thompson, AJ Stow & DA Raftos
Sydney rock oysters Saccostrea glomerata are among the most important estuarine species on the eastern coast of Australia and also the basis of a major aquaculture industry. The industry now largely relies on Sydney rock oysters that have been selectively bred for fast growth and disease resistance. Selectively bred S. glomerata are currently farmed in estuaries that also sustain wild populations of Sydney rock oysters, providing the opportunity for interbreeding. This has led to concern...

Data from: Geochemical analyses reveal the importance of environmental history for blue carbon sequestration

Jeffrey J. Kelleway, Neil Saintilan, Peter I. Macreadie, Jeff A. Baldock, Hendrik Heijnis, A. Zawadzkis, Patricia Gadd, Geraldine Jacobsen & Peter J. Ralph
Coastal habitats including saltmarshes and mangrove forests can accumulate and store significant blue carbon stocks, which may persist for millennia. Despite this implied stability, the distribution and structure of intertidal-supratidal wetlands is known to respond to changes imposed by geomorphic evolution, climatic, sea level and anthropogenic influences. In this study, we reconstruct environmental histories and biogeochemical conditions in four wetlands of similar contemporary vegetation in SE Australia. The objective is to assess the importance of...

Data from: Sexual and nonsexual cannibalism have different effects on offspring performance in redback spiders

Romain P. Boisseau, Shawn M. Wilder & Katherine L. Barry
Sexual cannibalism is often set apart from other forms of cannibalism; however, no studies have directly compared the fitness consequences of these 2 types of cannibalism. Here, we compared the consequences of cannibalism of a male by a female outside the context of mating (referred to as nonsexual cannibalism) and within the context of mating (referred to as sexual cannibalism) for the propensity to remate, fecundity, and offspring traits of female redback spiders Latrodectus hasselti....

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