52 Works

Data from: Possible ballast water transfer of lionfish to the eastern Pacific Ocean

Hugh J. MacIsaac, Emma M. De Roy, Brian Leung, Alice Grgicak-Mannion & Gregory M. Ruiz
The Indo-Pacific Red Lionfish was first reported off the Florida coast in 1985, following which it has spread across much of the SE USA, Gulf of Mexico, and Caribbean Sea. Lionfish negatively impact fish and invertebrate assemblages and abundances, thus further spread is cause for concern. To date, the fish has not been reported on the Pacific coast of North or Central America. Here we examine the possibility of ballast water transfer of lionfish from...

Data from: Tree circumference dynamics in four forests characterized using automated dendrometer bands

Valentine Herrmann, Sean M. McMahon, Matteo Detto, James A. Lutz, Stuart J. Davies, Chia-Hao Chang-Yang & Kristina J. Anderson-Teixeira
Stem diameter is one of the most commonly measured attributes of trees, forming the foundation of forest censuses and monitoring. Changes in tree stem circumference include both irreversible woody stem growth and reversible circumference changes related to water status, yet these fine-scale dynamics are rarely leveraged to understand forest ecophysiology and typically ignored in plot- or stand-scale estimates of tree growth and forest productivity. Here, we deployed automated dendrometer bands on 12–40 trees at four...

Data from: Plant host identity and soil macronutrients explain little variation in sapling endophyte community composition: is disturbance an alternative explanation?

Eric A. Griffin, Joshua G. Harrison, Steven W. Kembel, Alyssa A. Carrell, S. Joseph Wright & Walter P. Carson
1. Bacterial endophytes may be fairly host specific; nonetheless, an important subset of taxa may be shared among numerous host species forming a community-wide core microbiome. Moreover, other key factors, particularly the supply of limiting macronutrients and disturbances, may supersede the importance of host identity. 2. We tested the following four non-mutually exclusive hypotheses: 1. The Host Identity Hypothesis: endophytes vary substantially among different host plant species. 2. The Core Microbiome Hypothesis: a subset of...

Data from: Human-induced marine ecological degradation: micropaleontological perspectives

Moriaki Yasuhara, Gene Hunt, Denise Breitburg, Akira Tsujimoto & Kota Katsuki
We analyzed published downcore microfossil records from 150 studies and reinterpreted them from an ecological degradation perspective to address the following, critical but still imperfectly answered questions: (1) How is the timing of human-induced degradation of marine ecosystems different among regions? (2) What are the dominant causes of human-induced marine ecological degradation? (3) How can we better document natural variability and thereby avoid the problem of shifting baselines of comparison as degradation progresses over time?...

The biogeography of community assembly: latitude and predation drive variation in community trait distribution in a guild of epifaunal crustaceans

Collin Gross, Collin Gross, J Duffy, Kevin Hovel, Melissa Kardish, Pamela Reynolds, Christoffer Boström, Katharyn Boyer, Mathiew Cusson, Johan Eklöf, Aschwin Engelen, Klemens Eriksson, Joel Fodrie, John Griffin, Clara Hereu, Masakazu Hori, A Randall Hughes, Mikhail Ivanov, Pablo Jorgensen, Claudia Kruschel, Kun-Seop Lee, Jonathan Lefcheck, Karen McGlathery, Per-Olav Moksnes, Masahiro Nakaoka … & Jay Stachowicz
While considerable evidence exists of biogeographic patterns in the intensity of species interactions, the influence of these patterns on variation in community structure is less clear. Using a model selection approach on measures of trait dispersion in crustaceans associated with eelgrass (Zostera marina) spanning 30º of latitude in two oceans, we found that dispersion strongly increased with increasing predation and decreasing latitude. Ocean and epiphyte load appeared as secondary predictors; Pacific communities were more overdispersed...

Low-pH seawater alters indirect interactions in rocky-shore tidepools

Brittany Jellison, Brian Gaylord, Aaron Ninokawa, Kristen Elsmore, Gabriel Ng, Jeffrey Miller & Tessa Hill
Ocean acidification is expected to degrade marine ecosystems, yet most studies focus on organismal-level impacts rather than ecological perturbations. Field studies are especially sparse, particularly ones examining shifts in direct and indirect consumer interactions. Here we address such connections within tidepool communities of rocky shores, focusing on a three-level food web involving the keystone sea star predator, Pisaster ochraceus, a common herbivorous snail, Tegula funebralis, and a macroalgal basal resource, Macrocystis pyrifera. We demonstrate that...

Reef Life Survey data (fish and mobile invertebrate counts) from Carrie Bow Cay, Belize, 2015-2019

Leah Harper, Jonathan Lefcheck, Ross Whippo, Scott Jones, Zachary Foltz & Emmett Duffy
Aim Conservation efforts have traditionally addressed the threat of biodiversity loss by prioritizing regions and habitats with high endemic species richness. However, species-poor habitats often harbor distinct, valuable, and/or functionally unique species that contribute to regional diversity. In the tropical marine realm, the “mangrove-seagrass-coral reef continuum” has dominated both the scientific literature and marine spatial planning. Bare sediment habitats are also part of this continuum and often comprise the majority of bottom area, as they...

Data from: Insectivorous birds reduce herbivory but do not increase mangrove growth across productivity zones

Alexander Forde, Ilka Feller, John Parker & Daniel Gruner
Top-down effects of predators and bottom-up effects of resources are important drivers of community structure and function in a wide array of ecosystems. Fertilization experiments impose variation in resource availability that can mediate the strength of predator impacts, but the prevalence of such interactions across natural productivity gradients is less clear. We studied the joint impacts of top-down and bottom-up factors in a tropical mangrove forest system, leveraging fine-grained patchiness in resource availability and primary...

Data from: Lichens: a limit to peat growth?

Lorna I. Harris, Tim R. Moore, Nigel T. Roulet & Andrew J. Pinsonneault
1. The fruticose lichens Cladina stellaris and Cladina rangiferina, form thick mats that can cover large areas of northern peatlands (above ~ 50° latitude), including the extensive peatlands of the Hudson Bay Lowland (HBL) in Canada, where lichens may cover up to 50 % of the landscape. Despite the abundance of lichens in northern peatlands, our understanding of their role within peatland ecosystems, and peat accumulation in particular, is limited. 2. We investigate the potential...

Data from: Consumer versus resource control and the importance of habitat heterogeneity for estuarine bivalves

Rochelle D. Seitz, Romuald N. Lipcius & Anson H. Hines
The relative influence of consumers (top down) and resources (bottom up) on the distribution and abundance of organisms remains a key question in ecology. We examined the relationships between consumer and resource variables along a productivity gradient for a dominant predator–prey interaction in a marine soft-sediment system. We 1) quantified density and size of the clam Macoma balthica (prey species) in six replicate sites at each of four habitat types (shallow mud, deep mud, muddy...

Data from: Detrital traits affect substitutability of a range-expanding foundation species across latitude

Rachel S. Smith, Todd Z. Osborne, Ilka C. Feller & James E. Byers
Climate-driven range shifts of foundation species could alter ecosystem processes and community composition by providing different resources than resident foundation species. Along the US Atlantic coast, the northward expanding foundation species, black mangrove, Avicennia germinans, is replacing the dominant salt marsh foundation species, marsh cordgrass, Spartina alterniflora. These species have distinct detrital attributes that ostensibly provide different resources to epifauna. We experimentally examined how detritus of these species affects decomposition and community composition in different...

Data from: Microgeography, not just latitude, drives climate overlap on mountains from tropical to polar ecosystems

David H. Klinges & Brett R. Scheffers
An extension of the climate variability hypothesis is that relatively stable climate, such as that of the tropics, induces distinct thermal bands across elevation that render dispersal over tropical mountains difficult compared to temperate mountains. Yet, ecosystems are not thermally static in space-time, especially at small scales, which might render some mountains greater thermal isolators than others. Here, we provide an extensive investigation of temperature drivers from fine to coarse scales, and demonstrate that the...

Data from: Chemical novelty facilitates herbivore resistance and biological invasions in some introduced plant species

Brian Sedio, John Devaney, Jamie Pullen, Geoffrey Parker, S. Joseph Wright & John Parker
Ecological release from herbivory due to chemical novelty is commonly predicted to facilitate biological invasions by plants, but has not been tested on a community scale. We used metabolomics based on mass spectrometry molecular networks to assess the novelty of foliar secondary chemistry of 15 invasive plant species compared to 46 native species at a site in eastern North America. Locally, invasive species were more chemically distinctive than natives. Among the 15 invasive species, the...

Reduced avian body condition due to global warming has little reproductive or population consequences

Nina McLean, Henk Van Der Jeugd, Chris Van Turnhout, Jonathan Lefcheck & Martijn Van De Pol
Climate change has strong effects on traits such as phenology and physiology. Studies typically assume that climate-induced trait changes will have consequences for population dynamics, but explicit tests are rare. Body condition reflects energy storage and may directly affect how much can be invested in reproduction and survival. However, the causal pathway by which decreased body condition impacts population dynamics has never been quantified across multiple populations and species. Therefore, we lack a general understanding...

Comparative transcriptomics of tropical woody plants supports fast and furious strategy along the leaf economics spectrum in lianas

Ugur Uzay Sezen
Lianas, climbing woody plants, influence the structure and function of tropical forests. Climbing traits have evolved multiple times, including ancestral groups such as gymnosperms and pteridophytes, but the genetic basis of the liana strategy is largely unknown. Here, we use a comparative transcriptomic approach for 47 tropical plant species, including ten lianas of diverse taxonomic origins, to identify genes that are consistently expressed or downregulated only in lianas. Our comparative analysis of full-length transcripts enabled...

Data from: The role of taxonomic expertise in interpretation of metabarcoding studies

Paula Pappalardo, Allen G. Collins, Katrina M. Pagenkopp Lohan, Kate M. Hanson, Sarit B. Truskey, William Jaeckle, Cheryl Lewis Ames, Jessica A. Goodheart, Stephanie L. Bush, Leann M. Biancani, Ellen E. Strong, Michael Vecchione, M. G. Harasewych, Karen Reed, Chan Lin, Elise Hartil, Jessica Whelpley, Jamie Blumberg, Kenan Matterson, Niamh E. Redmond, Allison Becker, Michael J. Boyle & Karen J. Osborn
The performance of DNA metabarcoding approaches for characterizing biodiversity can be influenced by multiple factors. Here we used morphological assessment of taxa in zooplankton samples to develop a large barcode database and to assess the congruence of taxonomic identification with metabarcoding under different conditions. We analyzed taxonomic assignment of metabarcoded samples using two genetic markers (COI, 18S V1-2), two types of clustering into molecular operational taxonomic units (OTUs, ZOTUs), and three methods for taxonomic assignment...

Data from: Spatial heterogeneity in species composition constrains plant community responses to herbivory and fertilization

Dorothee Hodapp, Elizabeth T. Borer, W. Stanley Harpole, Eric M. Lind, Eric W. Seabloom, Peter B. Adler, Juan Alberti, Carlos A. Arnillas, Jonathan D. Bakker, Lori Biederman, Marc Cadotte, Elsa E. Cleland, Scott Collins, Philip A. Fay, Jennifer Firn, Nicole Hagenah, Yann Hautier, Oscar Iribarne, Johannes M.H. Knops, Rebecca L. McCulley, Andrew MacDougall, Joslin L. Moore, John W. Morgan, Brent Mortensen, Kimberly J. La Pierre … & Johannes M. H. Knops
Environmental change can result in substantial shifts in community composition. The associated immigration and extinction events are likely constrained by the spatial distribution of species. Still, studies on environmental change typically quantify biotic responses at single spatial (time series within a single plot) or temporal (spatial beta-diversity at single time points) scales, ignoring their potential interdependence. Here, we use data from a global network of grassland experiments to determine how turnover responses to two major...

Data from: Trophic sensitivity of invasive predator and native prey interactions: integrating environmental context and climate change

Brian S. Cheng, Lisa M. Komoroske & Edwin D. Grosholz
Climate change is predicted to intensify the impacts of invasive species by enhancing their performance relative to their native counterparts. However, few studies have compared the performance of invasive predators and native prey, despite the fact that non-native predators are well known to disrupt native communities. The ‘trophic sensitivity hypothesis’ suggests that predators are less tolerant of increasing environmental stress than their prey, whereas the ‘tolerant invaders hypothesis’ suggests that invaders are more tolerant than...

Data from: Warming accelerates mangrove expansion and surface elevation gain in a subtropical wetland

Glenn A. Coldren, J. Adam Langley, Ilka Candy Feller & Samantha K. Chapman
Climatic warming can change how coastal wetland plants grow, thus altering their capacity to build land and keep pace with rising seas. As freeze events decline with climate change, mangroves expand their range to higher latitudes and displace salt marsh vegetation. Warmer air temperatures will likely alter above‐ and below‐ground plant dynamics as this dramatic coastal wetland biome shift proceeds, which in turn may result in changes in ecosystem function such as sediment building. We...

Data from: Phylotranscriptomic analysis and genome evolution of the Cypripedioideae (Orchidaceae)

Sarah A. Unruh, Michael R. McKain, Yung-I Lee, Tomohisa Yukawa, Melissa K. McCormick, Richard P. Shefferson, Ann Smithson, James H. Leebens-Mack & J. Chris Pires
Premise of Study: The slipper orchids (Cypripedioideae) are a morphologically distinct subfamily of Orchidaceae. They also have some of the largest genomes in the orchids, which may be due to polyploidy or some other mechanism of genome evolution. We generated ten transcriptomes and incorporated existing RNA-seq data to infer a multi-locus nuclear phylogeny of the Cypripedioideae and to determine if a whole genome duplication event (WGD) correlated to the large genome size of this subfamily....

Predation shapes invertebrate diversity in tropical but not temperate seagrass communities

Amy Freestone, Elizabeth Carroll, Katherine Papacostas, Gregory Ruiz, Mark Torchin & Brent Sewall
1. The hypothesis that biotic interactions are stronger at lower relative to higher latitudes has a rich history, drawing from ecological and evolutionary theory. While this hypothesis suggests that stronger interactions at lower latitudes may contribute to the maintenance of contemporary patterns of diversity, there remain few standardized biogeographic comparisons of community effects of species interactions. 2. Using marine seagrasses as a focal ecosystem of conservation importance and sessile marine invertebrates as model prey, we...

Is the central-marginal hypothesis a general rule? Evidence from three distributions of an expanding mangrove species, Avicennia germinans (L.) L.

John Paul Kennedy, Richard Preziosi, Jennifer Rowntree & Ilka Feller
The central-marginal hypothesis (CMH) posits that range margins exhibit less genetic diversity and greater inter-population genetic differentiation compared to range cores. CMH predictions are based on long-held ‘abundant-centre’ assumptions of a decline in ecological conditions and abundances towards range margins. Although much empirical research has confirmed CMH, exceptions remain almost as common. We contend that mangroves provide a model system to test CMH that alleviates common confounding factors and may help clarify this lack of...

Data from: Climate affects the outbreaks of a forest defoliator indirectly through its tree hosts

Kyle Haynes, Andrew Liebhold, Jonathan Lefcheck, Randall Morin & Guiming Wang
Spatial variation in climate is known to affect the survival and reproduction of herbivorous forest insects and tree-species compositions, but the importance of indirect effects of climate on outbreaks of forest insects through its effects on forest composition is unclear. This data was compiled to examine the direct and indirect effects of climate, water capacity of the soil, host tree density, and non-host density on the spatial extent of Lymantria dispar outbreaks in the Eastern...

Data from: Patterns of nitrogen-fixing tree abundance in forests across Asia and America

Duncan N. L. Menge, Ryan A. Chisholm, Stuart J. Davies, Kamariah Abu Salim, David Allen, Mauricio Alvarez, Norm Bourg, Warren Y. Brockelman, Sarayudh Bunyavejchewin, Nathalie Butt, Min Cao, Wirong Chanthorn, Wei-Chun Chao, Keith Clay, Richard Condit, Susan Cordell, João Batista Da Silva, H. S. Dattaraja, Ana Cristina Segalin De Andrade, Alexandre A. Oliveira, Jan Den Ouden, Michael Drescher, Christine Fletcher, Christian P. Giardina, C. V. Savitri Gunatilleke … & Tak Fung
Symbiotic nitrogen (N)‐fixing trees can provide large quantities of new N to ecosystems, but only if they are sufficiently abundant. The overall abundance and latitudinal abundance distributions of N‐fixing trees are well characterised in the Americas, but less well outside the Americas. Here, we characterised the abundance of N‐fixing trees in a network of forest plots spanning five continents, ~5,000 tree species and ~4 million trees. The majority of the plots (86%) were in America...

Invasion history shapes host transcriptomic response to a body-snatching parasite

Zachary Tobias, Amy Fowler, April Blakeslee, John Darling, Mark Torchin, Whitman Miller, Gregory Ruiz & Carolyn Tepolt
By shuffling biogeographic distributions, biological invasions can both disrupt long-standing associations between hosts and parasites and establish new ones. This creates natural experiments with which to study the ecology and evolution of host-parasite interactions. In estuaries of the Gulf of Mexico, the white-fingered mud crab (Rhithropanopeus harrisii) is infected by a native parasitic barnacle Loxothylacus panopaei (Rhizocephala), which manipulates host physiology and behavior. In the 1960s, L. panopaei was introduced to the Chesapeake Bay and...

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Resource Types

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  • Smithsonian Environmental Research Center
  • Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute
  • University of Minnesota
  • University of Washington
  • University of Toronto
  • University of Pretoria
  • Utah State University
  • University of Georgia
  • German Center for Integrative Biodiversity Research
  • Smithsonian Institution