44 Works

Data from: The evolution of post-pairing male mate choice

Nan Lyu, Maria R. Servedio, Huw Lloyd & Yue-Hua Sun
An increasing number of empirical studies in animals have demonstrated male mate choice. However, little is known about the evolution of post-pairing male choice, specifically that which occurs by differential allocation of male parental care in response to female signals. We use a population genetic model to examine whether such post-pairing male mate choice can evolve when males face a trade-off between parental care and extra-pair copulations (EPCs). Specifically, we assume that males allocate more...

Data from: Predicting global population connectivity and targeting conservation action for snow leopard across its range

Philip Riordan, Samuel A. Cushman, David Mallon, Kun Shi & Joelene Hughes
Movements of individuals within and among populations help to maintain genetic variability and population viability. Therefore, understanding landscape connectivity is vital for effective species conservation. The snow leopard is endemic to mountainous areas of Central Asia and occurs within 12 countries. We assess potential connectivity across the species’ range to highlight corridors for dispersal and genetic flow between populations, prioritizing research and conservation action for this wide-ranging, endangered top-predator. We used resistant kernel modeling to...

A large-scale assessment of plant dispersal mode and seed traits across human-modified Amazonian forests

Joseph Hawes, Ima Vieira, Luiz Magnago, Erika Berenguer, Joice Ferreira, Luiz Aragão, Amanda Cardoso, Alexander Lees, Gareth Lennox, Joseph Tobias, Anthony Waldron & Jos Barlow
1. Quantifying the impact of habitat disturbance on ecosystem function is critical for understanding and predicting the future of tropical forests. Many studies have examined post-disturbance changes in animal traits related to mutualistic interactions with plants, but the effect of disturbance on plant traits in diverse forests has received much less attention. 2. Focusing on two study regions in the eastern Brazilian Amazon, we used a trait-based approach to examine how seed dispersal functionality within...

Ultrasound-derived changes in thickness of human ankle plantar flexor muscles during walking and running are not homogeneous along the muscle mid-belly region

Emma Hodson-Tole & Adrian Lai
Skeletal muscle thickness is a valuable indicator of several aspects of a muscle’s functional capabilities. We used computational analysis of ultrasound images, recorded from 10 humans walking and running at a range of speeds (0.7 – 5.0 m s-1), to quantify interactions in thickness change between three ankle plantar flexor muscles (soleus, medial and lateral gastrocnemius) and quantify thickness changes at multiple muscle sites within each image. Statistical analysis of thickness change as a function...

Faecal metabarcoding reveals pervasive long-distance impacts of garden bird feeding

Jack Shutt, Urmi Trivedi & James Nicholls
Supplementary feeding of wildlife is widespread, being undertaken by more than half of households in many countries. However, the impact that these supplemental resources have is unclear, with impacts assumed to be restricted to urban ecosystems. We reveal the pervasiveness of supplementary foodstuffs in the diet of a wild bird using metabarcoding of blue tit (Cyanistes caeruleus) faeces collected in early spring from a 220km transect in Scotland with a large urbanisation gradient. Supplementary foodstuffs...


Chris Fox, Andrew Smith, Grace Hothersall & Jordan Harrison

Data from: Demographic drivers of a refugee species: large-scale experiments guide strategies for reintroductions of hirola

Abdullahi H. Ali, Matthew J. Kauffman, Rajan Amin, Amos Kibara, Juliet King, David Mallon, Charles Musyoki & Jacob R. Goheen
Effective reintroduction strategies require accurate estimates of vital rates and the factors that influence them. We estimated vital rates of hirola (Beatragus hunteri) populations exposed to varying levels of predation and rangeland quality from 2012 to 2015, and then built population matrices to estimate the finite rate of population change (λ) and demographic sensitivities. Mean survival for all age classes and population growth was highest in the low predation/high-rangeland quality setting (λ = 1.08 ±...

Data from: The role of glycine betaine in range expansions; protecting mangroves against extreme freeze events

Matthew A. Hayes, Audrey C. Shor, Amber Jesse, Christopher Miller, John Paul Kennedy & Ilka Feller
1. Due to a warming climate, mangrove populations within the Gulf of Mexico and along the Florida Atlantic coastline are expanding their range poleward. As mangroves expand their range limit, leading edge individuals are more likely to experience an increased incidence of freeze events. However, we still lack a clear understanding of the mechanisms used by mangroves to survive freezing conditions. 2. Here, we conducted common garden experiments at different locations experiencing variable winter freeze...

Data from: Chemical signals from eggs facilitate cryptic female choice in humans

John Fitzpatrick, Charlotte Willis, Alessandro Devigili, Amy Young, Michael Carroll, Helen Hunter & Daniel Brison
Mate choice can continue after mating via chemical communication between the female reproductive system and sperm. While there is a growing appreciation that females can bias sperm use and paternity by exerting cryptic female choice for preferred males, we know surprisingly little about the mechanisms underlying these post-mating choices. In particular, whether chemical signals released from eggs (chemoattractants) allow females to exert cryptic female choice to favour sperm from specific males remains an open question,...

Data from: Effects of maternal genotypic identity and genetic diversity of the red mangrove Rhizophora mangle on associated soil bacterial communities: a field-based experiment

Hayley Craig, John Paul Kennedy, Donna J. Devlin, Richard D. Bardgett & Jennifer K. Rowntree
Loss of plant biodiversity can result in reduced abundance and diversity of associated species with implications for ecosystem functioning. In ecosystems low in plant species diversity, such as Neotropical mangrove forests, it is thought that genetic diversity within the dominant plant species could play an important role in shaping associated communities. Here, we used a manipulative field experiment to study the effects of maternal genotypic identity and genetic diversity of the red mangrove Rhizophora mangle...

Data from: The effects of tourist and boat traffic on parrot geophagy in lowland Peru

Alan T. K. Lee, Stuart J. Marsden, Emma Tatum-Hume & Donald J. Brightsmith
Ecotourism generates important revenue in many developing economies, but poorly regulated ecotourism can threaten the long-term viability of key biological resources. We determined the effects of tourism, boat traffic, and natural disturbances on parrot geophagy (soil consumption) across seven riverine claylicks in the lowlands of Madre de Dios, Peru. Claylick use significantly decreased when visitors did not follow good practice guidelines and tourist numbers exceeded the capacity of the observation blinds. Otherwise, tourist presence and...

Data from: A technical note on variable inter-frame interval as a cause of non-physiological experimental artefacts in ultrasound

Diego Miguez, Emma F. Hodson-Tole, Ian D. Loram & Peter J. Harding
Ultrasound imaging is a well-recognised technique for the study of static tissues but its suitability for studying tissue dynamics depends upon accurate frame time information, which may not always be available to users. Here we present methods to quantify the inter-frame interval (IFI) variability, and evaluate different procedures for collecting temporal information from two ultrasound-imaging devices. The devices tested exhibited variable IFIs that could only be confirmed by direct measures of timing signals, available by...

Data from: Culture moderates changes in linguistic self-presentation and detail provision when deceiving others

Paul J. Taylor, Samuel Larner, Stacey M. Conchie & Tarek Menacere
Change in our language when deceiving is attributable to differences in the affective and cognitive experience of lying compared to truth telling, yet these experiences are also subject to substantial individual differences. On the basis of previous evidence of cultural differences in self-construal and remembering, we predicted and found evidence for cultural differences in the extent to which truths and lies contained self (versus other) references and perceptual (versus social) details. Participants (N = 320)...

Protected by dragons: density surface modeling confirms large population of the critically endangered Yellow-crested Cockatoo on Komodo island

Anna Reuleaux, Benny A. Siregar, Nigel J. Collar, Maria R. Panggur, Ani Mardiastuti, Martin J. Jones & Stuart J. Marsden
Intense trapping of the critically endangered Yellow-crested Cockatoo Cacatua sulphurea for the International pet trade has devastated its populations across Indonesia such that populations >100 individuals remain at only a handful of sites. We combined distance sampling with density surface modeling (DSM) to predict local densities and estimate total population size for one of these areas, Komodo Island, part of Komodo National Park (KNP) in Indonesia. We modeled local density based on topography (topographic wetness...

Data from: A novel method for using ecoacoustics to monitor post‐translocation behaviour in an endangered passerine

Oliver C. Metcalf, John G. Ewen, Mhairi McCready, Emma M. Williams & J. Marcus Rowcliffe
1. Conservation translocations are an important tool in wildlife management, but have traditionally suffered from a low success rate. Increasing understanding of animal behaviour is vital in improving the success of translocations, but few methods exist to efficiently monitor highly mobile and cryptic species post-release. 2. We present a novel approach to using dynamic occupancy modelling in combination with data derived from autonomous acoustic recording units to monitor the post-release behaviour of hihi (Notiomystis cincta),...

Acoustic indices perform better when applied at ecologically meaningful time and frequency scales

Oliver Metcalf, Jos Barlow, Christian Devenish, Stuart Marsden, Erika Berenguer & Alexander Lees
Abstract: 1. Acoustic indices are increasingly employed in the analysis of soundscapes to ascertain biodiversity value. However, conflicting results and lack of consensus on best practices for their usage has hindered their application in conservation and land-use management contexts. Here we propose that the sensitivity of acoustic indices to ecological change and fidelity of acoustic indices to ecological communities are severely impacted by signal masking. Signal masking can occur when acoustic responses sensitive to the...

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 benefit of a tough skin: bullet holes, weathering and the preservation of heritage

Lisa Mol, Miguel Gomez-Heras, Charlotte Brassey, Owen Green & Tom Blenkinsop
Projectile damage to building stone is a widespread phenomenon. Sites damaged 100 years ago during the First World War still see daily use, while in a more contemporary setting numerous reports show the damage to buildings in Babylon, Mosul and Palmyra. While research has been carried out on the long-term effects of conflict such as fire damage, little is known about the protracted damage sustained through the impact of bullets, shrapnel and other metal projectiles...

Data from: Elevated success of multispecies bacterial invasions impacts community composition during ecological succession

Damian W. Rivett, Matt L. Jones, Josep Ramoneda, Shorok B. Mombrikotb, Emma Ransome & Thomas Bell
Successful microbial invasions are determined by a species’ ability to occupy a niche in the new habitat whilst resisting competitive exclusion by the resident community. Despite the recognised importance of biotic factors in determining the invasiveness of microbial communities, the success and impact of multiple concurrent invaders on the resident community has not been examined. Simultaneous invasions might have synergistic effects, for example if resident species need to exhibit divergent phenotypes to compete with the...

Data from: Evaluating tools for the spatial management of fisheries

Steven W.J. Canty, Nathan K. Truelove, Richard F. Preziosi, Simon Chenery, Matthew A.S. Horstwood, Stephen J. Box, Matthew A. S. Horstwood & Steven W. J. Canty
1. The ability to define the spatial dynamics of fish stocks is critical to fisheries management. Combating illegal, unreported and unregulated (IUU) fishing and the implementation of area based management through physical patrols and port side controls are growing areas of management attention. Augmenting the existing approaches to fisheries management with forensic techniques has the potential to increase compliance and enforcement success rates. 2. We tested the accuracy of three techniques that can be used...

Data from: The need for speed: global optic flow speed influences steering

Georgios K. Kountouriotis, Callum D. Mole, Natasha Merat & Richard M. Wilkie
How do animals follow demarcated paths? Different species are sensitive to optic flow and one control solution is to maintain the balance of flow symmetry across visual fields; however, it is unclear whether animals are sensitive to changes in asymmetries when steering along curved paths. Flow asymmetries can alter the global properties of flow (i.e. flow speed) which may also influence steering control. We tested humans steering curved paths in a virtual environment. The scene...

Who knows, who cares? Untangling ecological knowledge and nature connection among Amazonian colonist farmers

Katarzyna Mikolajczak, Alexander Lees, Jos Barlow, Frazer Sinclair, Oriana Trindade De Almeida, Agnis Souza & Luke Parry
Conservationists often assume that connection with and caring about nature’s wellbeing is strongly linked to ecological knowledge. Existing evidence on the link between ecological knowledge and psychological nature connection is mixed, geographically limited to countries in the Global North, and does not scrutinize potential differences in determinants of ecological knowledge and nature connection. We investigate the relationship between psychological nature connection and ecological knowledge of local bird species and assess their associations with potential drivers,...

Data from: Aircraft sound exposure leads to song frequency decline and elevated aggression in wild chiffchaffs

Andrew D. Wolfenden, Hans Slabbekoorn, Karolina Kluk & Selvino De Kort
1. The ubiquitous anthropogenic low-frequency noise impedes communication by masking animal signals. To overcome this communication barrier, animals may increase the frequency, amplitude and delivery rate of their acoustic signals, making them more easily heard. However, a direct impact of intermittent, high-level aircraft noise on birds’ behaviour living close to a runway has not been studies in detail. 2. We recorded common chiffchaffs Phylloscopus collybita songs near two airports and nearby control areas, and we...

Experimental predator intrusions in a cooperative breeder reveal threat-dependent task partitioning

Dario Josi, Annika Freudiger, Michael Taborsky & Joachim G. Frommen
In cooperatively breeding species, non-breeding individuals provide alloparental care and help in territory maintenance and defence. Antipredator behaviours of subordinates can enhance offspring survival, which may provide direct and indirect fitness benefits to all group members. Helping abilities and involved costs and benefits, risks and outside options (e.g. breeding independently) usually diverge between group members, which calls for status-specific differentiated behavioural responses. Such role differentiation within groups may generate task-specific division of labour, as exemplified...

Data from: Characterising bird-keeping user-groups on Java reveals distinct behaviours, profiles and potential for change

Harry Marshall, Nigel Collar, Alexander Lees, Andrew Moss, Pramana Yuda & Stuart Marsden
1. Over 70 million cage-birds are kept across 12 million households on the island of Java, Indonesia, fuelling serious concerns for the health of regional wild bird populations. Understanding the behaviours, preferences and demographic profiles of bird-keepers will guide attempts to reduce demand for wild birds and hence the impact of trade on wild populations and their host ecosystems. 2. We profile three songbird-keeping user-groups based on interviews of nearly one thousand people across Java:...

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  • Manchester Metropolitan University
  • University of Oxford
  • Lancaster University
  • Zoological Society of London
  • Plymouth University
  • University of Leeds
  • University of East Anglia
  • Anglia Ruskin University
  • University of Wyoming
  • BirdLife International