Potential benefits of incorporating arable wildflowers into living mulches for sustainable agricultureJennifer Rowntree, Clare Dean, Freddie Morrison, Rob Brooker & Elizabeth Price
Background: As agriculture has intensified, many once-common wildflowers have declined in arable landscapes, which has widespread implications for associated ecosystem services. The incorporation of sustainable practices, for example, growing living mulches (in-field, non-crop plant ground cover, maintained during the target crop growing season), can boost arable biodiversity, but few wildflower species have been utilised in this context. Aims: Our aim was to determine the suitability of arable wildflower species, once considered weeds, for use as...
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...
Estimating density of mountain hares using distance sampling: a comparison of daylight visual surveys, night-time thermal imaging and camera trapsCarlos Bedson
Surveying cryptic, nocturnal animals is logistically challenging. Consequently, density estimates may be imprecise and uncertain. Survey innovations mitigate ecological and observational difficulties contributing to estimation variance. Thus, comparisons of survey techniques are critical to evaluate estimates of abundance. We simultaneously compared three methods for observing mountain hare (Lepus timidus) using Distance sampling to estimate abundance. Daylight visual surveys achieved 41 detections, estimating density at 14.3 hares km-2 (95%CI 6.3–32.5) resulting in the lowest estimate and...
Who knows, who cares? Untangling ecological knowledge and nature connection among Amazonian colonist farmersKatarzyna 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,...
Oceanographic features and limited dispersal shape the population genetic structure of the vase sponge Ircinia campana in the Greater CaribbeanSarah Griffiths, Mark Butler, Donald Behringer, Thierry Pérez & Richard Preziosi
Understanding population genetic structure can help us to infer dispersal patterns, predict population resilience and design effective management strategies. For sessile species with limited dispersal, this is especially pertinent because genetic diversity and connectivity are key aspects of their resilience to environmental stressors. Here, we describe the population structure of Ircinia campana, a common Caribbean sponge subject to mass mortalities and disease. Microsatellites were used to genotype 440 individuals from 19 sites throughout the Greater...
Restored saltmarshes have low beta diversity due to limited topographic variation, but this can be countered by managementPeter Lawrence, Martin Sullivan & Hannah Mossman
1. Spatial heterogeneity of species (beta diversity) is an important attribute of ecological communities, but is less frequently considered when assessing restoration success than other aspects of diversity (gamma and alpha). Differences in beta diversity between restored and natural sites may arise due to differences in environmental heterogeneity. 2. We use a nested sampling design to survey plant communities and environmental conditions (elevation, redox potential and metrics of topography) on four pairs of restored and...
Age- and sex-dependent variation in relatedness corresponds to reproductive skew, territory inheritance and workload in cooperatively breeding cichlidsDario Josi, Dik Heg, Tomohiro Takeyama, Danielle Bonfils, Dmitry A. Konovalov, Joachim G. Frommen, Masanori Kohda & Michael Taborsky
Kin selection plays a major role in the evolution of cooperative systems. However, many social species exhibit complex within-group relatedness structures, where kin selection alone cannot explain the occurrence of cooperative behaviour. Understanding such social structures is crucial to elucidate the evolution and maintenance of multi-layered cooperative societies. In lamprologine cichlids, intragroup relatedness seems to correlate positively with reproductive skew, suggesting that in this clade dominants tend to provide reproductive concessions to unrelated subordinates to...
Manchester Metropolitan University8
Anglia Ruskin University1
University of Edinburgh1
Florida International University1
University of Bern1
Osaka City University1
University of Florida1
Federal University of Para1
Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation1