1,295 Works

Data from: Parasite load and MHC diversity in undisturbed and agriculturally modified habitats of the ornate dragon lizard

Jacek Radwan, Katarzyna Kuduk, Esther Levy, Natasha LeBas & Wieslaw Babik
MHC gene polymorphism is thought to be driven by host-parasite coevolution, but the evidence for an association between the selective pressure from parasites and the number of MHC alleles segregating in a population is scarce and inconsistent. Here, we characterized MHC class I polymorphism in a lizard whose habitat preferences (rock outcrops) lead to the formation of well-defined and stable populations. We investigated the association between the load of ticks, which were used as a...

Data from: Mating portfolios: bet-hedging, sexual selection and female multiple mating

Francisco Garcia-Gonzalez, Jonathan P. Evans & Yukio Yasui
Polyandry (female multiple mating) has profound evolutionary and ecological implications. Despite considerable work devoted to understanding why females mate multiply, we currently lack convincing empirical evidence to explain the adaptive value of polyandry. Here, we provide a direct test of the controversial idea that bet-hedging functions as a risk-spreading strategy that yields multi-generational fitness benefits to polyandrous females. Unfortunately, testing this hypothesis is far from trivial, and the empirical comparison of the across-generations fitness payoffs...

Data from: Correlated evolution of sexual dimorphism and male dimorphism in a clade of neotropical harvestmen

Bruno Alves Buzatto, Joseph L. Tomkins, Leigh W. Simmons & Glauco Machado
Secondary sexual traits increase male fitness, but may be maladaptive in females, generating intralocus sexual conflict that is ameliorated through sexual dimorphism. Sexual selection on males may also lead some males to avoid expenditure on secondary sexual traits and achieve copulations using alternative reproductive tactics (ARTs). Secondary sexual traits can increase or decrease fitness in males, depending on which ART they employ, generating intralocus tactical conflict that can be ameliorated through male dimorphism. Due to...

Data from: Female effects, but no intrinsic male effects on paternity outcome in crickets

Leigh W. Simmons, Maxine Lovegrove & Maria Almbro
Competitive fertilization success can depend on the relative abilities of competing males to fertilize available ova, and on mechanisms of cryptic female choice that moderate paternity. Competitive fertilization success is thus an emergent property of competing male genotypes, female genotype and their interactions. Accurate estimates of intrinsic male effects on competitive fertilization success are therefore problematic. We used a cross-classified nonbreeding design in which rival male family background was standardized to partition variation in competitive...

Data from: Evolutionary change in testes tissue competition among experimental populations of house mice

Renée Claire Firman, Francisco Garcia-Gonzalez, Evan Tyler, Samantha Wheeler, Zayaputeri Yamin, Michael Yuan & Leigh W. Simmons
Theory assumes that postcopulatory sexual selection favours increased investment in testes size because greater numbers of sperm within the ejaculate increase the chance of success in sperm competition, and larger testes are able to produce more sperm. However, changes in the organization of the testes tissue may also affect sperm production rates. Indeed, recent comparative analyses suggest that sperm competition selects for greater proportions of sperm-producing tissue within the testes. Here, we explicitly test this...

Data from: Sexual selection can remove an experimentally induced mutation load

Maria Almbro & Leigh W. Simmons
Sexual selection is argued to be important for the removal of deleterious mutations, promoting population fitness, accelerating adaptation, and compensating for the two-fold cost of sex. Here we induced mutations in the dung beetle Onthophagus taurus using ionizing radiation, and tested the efficacy of sexual selection in their removal. Mutations reduced male precopulatory (strength) and postcopulatory (testes mass) sexual traits. Two generations of sexual selection were sufficient to remove mutations that affected male strength, but...

Data from: Replicated evolutionary divergence in the cuticular hydrocarbon profile of male crickets associated with the loss of song in the Hawaiian archipelago

Leigh W. Simmons, Melissa L. Thomas, Brian Gray & Marlene Zuk
Female choice based on male secondary sexual traits is well documented, although the extent to which this selection can drive an evolutionary divergence in male traits among populations is less clear. Male field crickets Teleogryllus oceanicus attract females using a calling song and once contacted switch to courtship song to persuade them to mate. These crickets also secrete onto their cuticle a cocktail of long-chained fatty acids or cuticular hydrocarbons (CHCs). Females choose among potential...

Data from: Environmental filtering explains variation in plant diversity along resource gradients

Etienne Laliberté, Graham Zemunik & Benjamin L. Turner
The mechanisms that shape plant diversity along resource gradients remain unresolved because competing theories have been evaluated in isolation. By testing multiple theories simultaneously across a >2-million-year dune chronosequence in an Australian biodiversity hotspot, we show that variation in plant diversity is not explained by local resource heterogeneity, resource partitioning, nutrient stoichiometry, or soil fertility along this strong resource gradient. Rather, our results suggest that diversity is determined by environmental filtering from the regional flora,...

Data from: Male sperm storage compromises sperm motility in guppies

Clelia Gasparini, Jennifer L. Kelley & Jonathan P. Evans
Sperm senescence can have important evolutionary implications due to its deleterious effects on sperm quality and offspring performance. Consequently, it has been argued that polyandry (female multiple mating) may facilitate the selection of younger, and therefore competitively superior, sperm when ejaculates from multiple males compete for fertilization. Surprisingly, however, unequivocal evidence that sperm ageing influences traits that underlie sperm competitiveness is lacking. Here, we used a paired experimental design that compares sperm quality between ‘old’...

Data from: Reading the leaves: a comparison of leaf rank and automated areole measurement for quantifying aspects of leaf venation

Walton A. Green, Stefan A. Little, Charles A. Price, Scott L. Wing, Selena Y. Smith, Benjamin Kotrc & Gabriela Doria
The reticulate venation that is characteristic of a dicot leaf has excited interest from systematists for more than a century, and from physiological and developmental botanists for decades. The tools of digital image acquisition and computer image analysis, however, are only now approaching the sophistication needed to quantify aspects of the venation network found in real leaves quickly, easily, accurately, and reliably enough to produce biologically meaningful data. In this paper, we examine 120 leaves...

Data from: Population genetic structure of the Pocillopora damicornis morphospecies along Ningaloo Reef, Western Australia

Luke Thomas, G. A. Kendrick, M. Stat, K. L. Travaille, G. Shedrawi, W. J. Kennington, GA Kendrick, KL Travaille & WJ Kennington
The effective management of a coral reef system relies on a detailed understanding of the population structure of dominant habitat-forming species. For some corals, however, high levels of phenotypic plasticity have made species delineation based on morphological characteristics alone unreliable, suggesting that previous studies of population genetic structure may have been influenced by the inclusion of multiple genetic lineages in the analyses. We examined the population structure of the Pocillopora damicornis morphospecies along the World...

Data from: Rapid loss of behavioural plasticity and immunocompetence under intense sexual selection

Emile Van Lieshout, Kathryn Bridget McNamara & Leigh W. Simmons
Phenotypic plasticity allows animals to maximise fitness by conditionally expressing the phenotype best adapted to their environment. While evidence for such adjustment in reproductive tactics is common, little is known about how phenotypic plasticity evolves in response to sexual selection. We examined the effect of sexual selection intensity on phenotypic plasticity in mating behaviour using the beetle Callosobruchus maculatus. Male genital spines harm females during mating and females exhibit copulatory kicking, an apparent resistance trait...

Data from: Epistasis, phenotypic disequilibrium and contrasting associations with climate in the land snail Theba pisana

Michael S. Johnson
Hotter conditions favour effectively unbanded (EUB) shells in the snail Theba pisana. T. pisana is also polymorphic for colour of the shell's apex, determined by a pair of alleles at a locus linked to the banding locus. Apex colour is epistatic to shell banding, such that banded snails with a dark apex have darker bands. Annual censuses over 22 years across an ecotone between a sheltered Acacia thicket and open dune vegetation showed a persistent...

Data from: Experimental sexual selection and sex comb evolution in Drosophila

Rhonda R. Snook, Nelly A. Gidaszewski, Tracey Chapman & Leigh W. Simmons
Sexual selection can drive rapid evolutionary change in reproductive behaviour, morphology and physiology. This often leads to the evolution of sexual dimorphism, and continued exaggerated expression of dimorphic sexual characteristics, although a variety of other alternative selection scenarios exist. Here, we examined the evolutionary significance of a rapidly evolving, sexually dimorphic trait, sex comb tooth number, in two Drosophila species. The presence of the sex comb in both D. melanogaster and D. pseudoobscura is known...

Data from: Female crickets assess relatedness during mate guarding and bias storage of sperm toward unrelated males

Cristina Tuni, Maxine Beveridge & Leigh W. Simmons
Recent evidence shows that females exert a post-copulatory fertilization bias in favour of unrelated males to avoid the genetic incompatibilities derived from inbreeding. One of the mechanisms suggested for fertilization biases in insects is female control over transport of sperm to the sperm-storage organs. We investigated post-copulatory inbreeding-avoidance mechanisms in females of the cricket Teleogryllus oceanicus. We assessed the relative contribution of related and unrelated males to the sperm stores of double-mated females. To demonstrate...

Data from: Sex-linked and autosomal microsatellites provide new insights into island populations of the tammar wallaby

Anna J. MacDonald, Nancy N. FitzSimmons, Brian Chambers, Marilyn B. Renfree & Stephen D. Sarre
The emerging availability of microsatellite markers from mammalian sex chromosomes provides opportunities to investigate both male- and female-mediated gene flow in wild populations, identifying patterns not apparent from the analysis of autosomal markers alone. Tammar wallabies (Macropus eugenii), once spread over the southern mainland, have been isolated on several islands off the Western Australian and South Australian coastlines for between 10 000 and 13 000 years. Here, we combine analyses of autosomal, Y-linked and X-linked...

Data from: Contrasting responses of pre- and post-copulatory traits to variation in mating competition

Leigh W. Simmons & Bruno A. Buzatto
1. Original sperm competition theory assumed that males trade expenditure on searching for mates for expenditure on the ejaculate, and predicted that males should increase their expenditure on the ejaculate in response to increased risk of competition. A recent extension of this theory has modeled pre-copulatory expenditure in terms of direct contest competition, and predicts that when the gains from marginal investment in weaponry are large, males might be expected to allocate resources to armaments...

Data from: An endangered arboreal specialist, the western ringtail possum (Pseudocheirus occidentalis), shows a greater genetic divergence across a narrow artificial waterway than a major road

Kaori Yokochi, Winn Jason Kennington & Roberta Bencini
The fragmentation of habitats by roads and other artificial linear structures can have a profound effect on the movement of arboreal species due to their strong fidelity to canopies. Here, we used 12 microsatellite DNA loci to investigate the fine-scale spatial genetic structure and the effects of a major road and a narrow artificial waterway on a population of the endangered western ringtail possum (Pseudocheirus occidentalis) in Busselton, Western Australia. Using spatial autocorrelation analysis, we...

Data from: Experimental evidence that the effectiveness of conservation biological control depends on landscape complexity

Mattias Jonsson, Cory S. Straub, Raphael K. Didham, Hannah L. Buckley, Bradley S. Case, Roddy J. Hale, Claudio Gratton & Steve D. Wratten
1. The expansion of intensive agricultural practices is a major threat to biodiversity and to the delivery of ecosystem services on which humans depend. Local-scale conservation management strategies, such as agri-environment schemes to preserve biodiversity, have been widely adopted to reduce the negative impacts of agricultural intensification. However, it is likely that the effectiveness of these local-scale management actions depend on the structure and composition of the surrounding landscape. 2. We experimentally tested the utility...

Data from: Paternity analysis reveals wide pollen dispersal and high multiple paternity in a small isolated population of the bird-pollinated Eucalyptus caesia (Myrtaceae)

Nicole Bezemer, Siegfried L. Krauss, Ryan D. Phillips, David G. Roberts & Stephen D. Hopper
Optimal foraging behaviour by nectavores is expected to result in a leptokurtic pollen dispersal distribution and predominantly near-neighbour mating. However, complex social interactions among nectarivorous birds may result in different mating patterns to those typically observed in insect-pollinated plants. Mating system, realised pollen dispersal and spatial genetic structure were examined in the bird-pollinated Eucalyptus caesia, a species characterised by small, geographically disjunct populations. Nine microsatellite markers were used to genotype an entire adult stand and...

Data from: Genetic variation but weak genetic covariation between pre- and postcopulatory episodes of sexual selection in Drosophila melanogaster

Laura M. Travers, Francisco Garcia-Gonzalez & Leigh W. Simmons
When females mate polyandrously, male reproductive success depends both on the male's ability to attain matings and his ability to outcompete rival males in the fertilization of ova post copulation. Increased investment in ejaculate components may trade-off with investment in precopulatory traits due to resource allocation. Alternatively, pre- and postcopulatory traits could be positively related if individuals can afford to invest heavily in traits advantageous at both episodes of selection. There is empirical evidence for...

Data from: Demonstrating multiple benefits from periodically harvested fisheries closures

Jordan S. Goetze, Joachim Claudet, Fraser Januchowski-Hartley, Timothy J. Langlois, Shaun K. Wilson, Crow White, Rebecca Weeks & Stacy D. Jupiter
1.Periodically harvested closures (PHCs) are one of the most common forms of fisheries management in Melanesia, demonstrating multiple objectives, including sustaining fish stocks and increasing catch efficiency to support small-scale fisheries. No studies have comprehensively assessed their ability to provide short-term fisheries benefits across the entire harvest regime. 2.We present a novel analytical framework to guide a meta-analysis and assist future research in conceptualizing and assessing the potential of PHCs to deliver benefits for multiple...

Data from: Possible glimpses into early speciation: the effect of ovarian fluid on sperm velocity accords with post-copulatory isolation between two guppy populations

Alessandro Devigili, John L Fitzpatrick, Clelia Gasparini, Indar W Ramnarine, Andrea Pilastro & Jonathan P Evans
Identifying mechanisms of reproductive isolation is key to understanding speciation. Among the putative mechanisms underlying reproductive isolation, sperm-female interactions (postmating-prezygotic barriers) are arguably the hardest to identify, not least because these are likely to operate at the cellular or molecular level. Yet sperm-female interactions offer great potential to prevent the transfer of genetic information between different populations at the initial stages of speciation. Here we provide a preliminary test for the presence of a putative...

Data from: Males harm females less when competing with familiar relatives

Samuel James Lymbery & Leigh W. Simmons
Sexual conflict occurs when reproductive partners have different fitness optima, and can lead to the evolution of traits in one sex that inflict fitness costs on the opposite sex. Recently, it has been proposed that antagonism by males towards females should be reduced when they compete with relatives, because reducing the future productivity of a female would result in an indirect fitness cost for a harmful male. We tested this prediction in the seed beetle...

Data from: Quantifying the effects of ecological constraints on trait expression using novel trait-gradient analysis parameters

Gianluigi Ottaviani, James L. Tsakalos, Gunnar Keppel & Ladislav Mucina
1. Complex processes related to biotic and abiotic forces can impose limitations to assembly and composition of plant communities. Quantifying the effects of these constraints on plant functional traits across environmental gradients, and among communities, remains challenging. We define ecological constraint (Ci) as the combined, limiting effect of biotic interactions and environmental filtering on trait expression (i.e., the mean value and range of functional traits). 2. Here we propose a set of novel parameters to...

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