The continuum hypothesis states that both deterministic and stochastic processes contribute to the assembly of ecological communities. However, the contextual dependency of these processes remains an open question that imposes strong limitations on predictions of community responses to environmental change. Here we measure community and habitat turnover across multiple vertical soil horizons at 183 sites across Scotland for bacteria and fungi, both dominant and functionally vital components of all soils but which differ substantially in...
Data from: Trade-offs in juvenile growth potential vs. shade tolerance among subtropical rainforest trees on soils of contrasting fertilityKerrie 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: Genome-wide transcriptional signatures of migratory flight activity in a globally invasive insect pestChristopher M. Jones, Alexie Papanicolaou, George K. Mironidis, John Vontas, Yihua Yang, Ka S. Lim, Kumar S. Singh, John G. Oakeshott, Christopher Bass, Jason W. Chapman & Chris Bass
Migration is a key life history strategy for many animals and requires a suite of behavioural, morphological and physiological adaptations which together form the ‘migratory syndrome’. Genetic variation has been demonstrated for many traits that make up this syndrome, but the underlying genes involved remain elusive. Recent studies investigating migration-associated genes have focussed on sampling migratory and nonmigratory populations from different geographic locations but have seldom explored phenotypic variation in a migratory trait. Here, we...
Data from: Sexual selection and population divergence I: the influence of socially flexible cuticular hydrocarbon expression in male field crickets (Teleogryllus oceanicus)Sonia Pascoal, Magdalena Mendrok, Christopher Mitchell, Alastair J. Wilson, John Hunt & Nathan W. Bailey
Debates about how coevolution of sexual traits and preferences might promote evolutionary diversification have permeated speciation research for over a century. Recent work demonstrates that the expression of such traits can be sensitive to variation in the social environment. Here we examined social flexibility in a sexually selected male trait – cuticular hydrocarbon (CHC) profiles – in the field cricket Teleogryllus oceanicus and tested whether population genetic divergence predicts the extent or direction of social...
Aim: The influence of soil properties on photosynthetic traits in higher plants is poorly quantified in comparison with that of climate. We address this situation by quantifying the unique and joint contributions to global leaf-trait variation from soils and climate. Location: Terrestrial ecosystems world-wide. Methods: Using a trait dataset comprising 1509 species from 288 sites, with climate and soil data derived from global datasets, we quantified the effects of 20 soil and 26 climate variables...
Data from: Species richness, but not phylogenetic diversity, influences community biomass production and temporal stability in a re-examination of 16 grassland biodiversity studiesPatrick Venail, Kevin Gross, Todd H. Oakley, Anita Narwani, Eric Allan, Pedro Flombaum, Forest Isbell, Jasmin Joshi, Peter B. Reich, David Tilman, Jasper Van Ruijven & Bradley J. Cardinale
1.Hundreds of experiments have now manipulated species richness of various groups of organisms and examined how this aspect of biological diversity influences ecosystem functioning. Ecologists have recently expanded this field to look at whether phylogenetic diversity among species, often quantified as the sum of branch lengths on a molecular phylogeny leading to all species in a community, also predicts ecological function. Some have hypothesized that phylogenetic divergence should be a superior predictor of ecological function...
Data from: Functional extinction of a desert rodent: implications for seed fate and vegetation dynamicsChristopher E. Gordon & Mike Letnic
Population declines of once-abundant species have often preceded understanding of their roles within ecosystems. Consequently, important drivers of environmental change may remain undiagnosed because we simply do not know how species that are now rare or extinct shaped ecosystems in the past. Australia's desert rodents are thought to have little numerical impact on seed fate and vegetation recruitment when compared with ants or with desert rodents on other continents. However most research on granivory by...
Data from: Seasonality of soil moisture mediates responses of ecosystem phenology to elevated CO2 and warming in a semi-arid grasslandTamara J. Zelikova, David G. Williams, Rhonda Hoenigman, Dana M. Blumenthal, Jack A. Morgan & Elise Pendall
Vegetation greenness, detected using digital photography, is useful for monitoring phenology of plant growth, carbon uptake, and water loss at the ecosystem level. Assessing ecosystem phenology by greenness is especially useful in spatially extensive, water-limited ecosystems such as the grasslands of the western United States, where productivity is moisture dependent and may become increasingly vulnerable to future climate change. We used repeat photography and a novel means of quantifying greenness in digital photographs to assess...
Data from: One step ahead: a parasitoid disperses farther and forms a wider geographic population than its fig wasp hostTimothy L. Sutton, Markus Riegler & James M. Cook
The structure of populations across landscapes influences the dynamics of their interactions with other species. Understanding the geographic structure of populations can thus shed light on the potential for interacting species to coevolve. Host – parasitoid interactions are widespread in nature, and also represent a significant force in the evolution of plant – insect interactions. However, there have been few comparisons of population structure between an insect host and its parasitoid. We used microsatellite markers...
Data from: Mesopredator suppression by an apex predator alleviates the risk of predation perceived by small preyChristopher E. Gordon, Anna Feit, Jennifer Grüber, Mike Letnic & J. Gruber
Predators can impact their prey via consumptive effects that occur through direct killing, and via non-consumptive effects that arise when the behaviour and phenotypes of prey shift in response to the risk of predation. Although predators' consumptive effects can have cascading population-level effects on species at lower trophic levels there is less evidence that predators' non-consumptive effects propagate through ecosystems. Here we provide evidence that suppression of abundance and activity of a mesopredator (the feral...
Data from: Differential proteomic responses of selectively bred and wild Sydney rock oyster populations exposed to elevated CO2Emma L. Thompson, Wayne O'Connor, Laura Parker, Pauline Ross & David A. Raftos
Previous work suggests that larvae from Sydney rock oysters that have been selectively bred for fast growth and disease resistance are more resilient to the impacts of ocean acidification than nonselected, wild-type oysters. In this study, we used proteomics to investigate the molecular differences between oyster populations in adult Sydney rock oysters and to identify whether these form the basis for observations seen in larvae. Adult oysters from a selective breeding line (B2) and nonselected...
Western Sydney University11
University of Minnesota3
University of California System2
University of Exeter2
VU University Amsterdam1
University of Michigan-Ann Arbor1
Swiss Federal Institute of Aquatic Science and Technology1
Estonian University of Life Sciences1