191 Works

Herbivores reduce seedling recruitment in alpine plant communities

Øystein H. Opedal, Kristin Nystuen, Dagmar Hagen, Håkon Holien, Mia Sørensen, Simone Lang, Sigrid Lindmo, G. RIchard Strimbeck & Bente Graae
Through changes in climate and other environmental factors, alpine tundra ecosystems are subject to increased cover of erect shrubs, reduced predictability of rodent dynamics, and changes in wild and domesticated herbivore densities. To predict the dynamics of these ecosystems, we need to understand how these simultaneous changes affect alpine vegetation. In the long term, vegetation dynamics may depend critically on seedling recruitment. To study drivers of alpine plant seedling recruitment, we set up a field...

Exceptionally high apparent adult survival in three tropical species of plovers in Madagascar

William Jones, Luke Eberhart-Hertel, Robert Freckleton, Joseph Hoffmann, Oliver Krüger, Brett Sandercock, Orsolya Vincze, Sama Zefania & Tamás Székely
Adult survival is a key component of population dynamics and understanding variation in and the drivers of adult survival rates and longevity is critical for ecological and evolutionary studies, as well as for conservation biology and practice. Tropical species of landbirds are often selected to have higher adult survival due to high nest predation rates, but it is unclear if the same patterns occur in other avian lineages with different life history strategies. Here, we...

Scavenger community structure along an environmental gradient from boreal forest to alpine tundra in Scandinavia

Gjermund Gomo, Lars Rød-Eriksen, Harry P. Andreassen, Jenny Mattisson, Morten Odden, Olivier Devineau & Nina E. Eide
Scavengers can have strong impacts on food webs, and awareness of their role in ecosystems have increased during the last decades. In our study, we used baited camera traps to quantify the structure of the winter scavenger community in central Scandinavia across a forest-alpine continuum and assess how climatic conditions affected spatial patterns of species occurrences. Canonical correspondence analysis revealed that the main habitat type (forest or alpine tundra) and snow depth were main determinants...

Data from: Exploratory and confirmatory research in the open science era

Erlend B. Nilsen, Diana Bowler & John Linnell
1. Applied ecological research is increasingly inspired by the Open Science movement. However, new challenges about how we define our science when biodiversity data is being shared and re-used are not solved. Among these challenges is the risk associated with blurring the distinction between research that mainly seeks to explore patterns with no a-priori articulated hypotheses (exploratory research), and research that explicitly tests a-priori formulated hypotheses (confirmatory research). 2. A rapid screening of a random...

Data from: Temporal variation in habitat selection breaks the catch-22 of spatially contrasting predation risk from multiple predators

Karen Lone, Atle Mysterud, Terje Gobakken, John Odden, John Linnell & Leif Egil Loe
Predator avoidance depends on prey being able to discern how risk varies in space and time, but this is made considerably more complicated if risk is simultaneously present from multiple predators. This is the situation for an increasing number of mammalian prey species, as large carnivores recover or are reintroduced in ecosystems on several continents. Roe deer Capreolus capreolus in southern Norway illustrate a case in which prey face two predators with contrasting patterns of...

Data from: High-throughput microsatellite genotyping in ecology: improved accuracy, efficiency, standardization and success with low-quantity and degraded DNA

Marta De Barba, Christian Miquel, Stephane Lobreaux, Pierre Yves Quenette, Jon E. Swenson & Pierre Taberlet
Microsatellite markers have played a major role in ecological, evolutionary and conservation research during the past 20 years. However, technical constrains related to the use of capillary electrophoresis and a recent technological revolution that has impacted other marker types have brought to question the continued use of microsatellites for certain applications. We present a study for improving microsatellite genotyping in ecology using high-throughput sequencing (HTS). This approach entails selection of short markers suitable for HTS,...

Data from: Migration in geographic and ecological space by a large herbivore

Wibke Peters, Mark Hebblewhite, Atle Mysterud, Derek Spitz, Stefano Focardi, Ferdinando Urbano, Nicolas Morellet, Marco Heurich, Petter Kjellander, John D.C. Linnell, Francesca Cagnacci & John D. C. Linnell
Partial migration, when only part of the population migrates seasonally while the other part remains resident on the shared range, is the most common form of migration in ungulates. Migration is often defined by spatial separation of seasonal ranges and consequently, classification of individuals as migrants or residents is usually only based on geographic criteria. However, the underlying mechanism for migration is hypothesized to be movement in response to spatiotemporal resource variability and thus, migrants...

Data from: Population properties affect inbreeding avoidance in moose

Ivar Herfindal, Hallvard Haanes, Knut H. Røed, Erling J. Solberg, Stine S. Markussen, Morten Heim, Bernt-Erik Sæther & B.-E. Saether
Mechanisms reducing inbreeding are thought to have evolved owing to fitness costs of breeding with close relatives. In small and isolated populations, or populations with skewed age- or sex distributions, mate choice becomes limited, and inbreeding avoidance mechanisms ineffective. We used a unique individual-based dataset on moose from a small island in Norway to assess whether inbreeding avoidance was related to population structure and size, expecting inbreeding avoidance to be greater in years with larger...

Data from: Hidden survival heterogeneity of three common eider populations in response to climate fluctuations

Loreleï Guéry, Sébastien Descamps, Roger Pradel, Sveinn Are Hanssen, Kjell Einar Erikstad, Geir W. Gabrielsen, H. Grant Gilchrist & Joël Bêty
(1) Understanding how individuals and populations respond to fluctuations in climatic conditions is critical to explain and anticipate changes in ecological systems. Most such studies focus on climate impacts on single populations without considering inter- and intra-population heterogeneity. However, comparing geographically dispersed populations limits the risk of faulty generalizations and helps to improve ecological and demographic models. (2) We aimed to determine whether differences in migration tactics among and within populations would induce inter- or...

Data from: Sympatric population divergence within a highly pelagic seabird species complex (Hydrobates spp.)

Rebecca S. Taylor, Anna Bailie, Previn Gulavita, Tim Birt, Tomas Aarvak, Tycho Anker-Nilssen, Daniel C. Barton, Kirsten Lindquist, Yuliana Bedolla-Guzmán, Petra Quillfeldt & Vicki L. Friesen
Both physical and non-physical barriers can restrict gene flow among seabird populations. Understanding the relative importance of non-physical barriers, such as breeding phenology, is key to understanding seabird biodiversity. We investigated drivers of diversification in the Leach’s storm-petrel species complex (Hydrobates spp.) by examining population genetic structure across its range. Variation in the mitochondrial control region and six microsatellite loci was assayed in birds sampled from breeding colonies throughout the North Atlantic and North Pacific...

Estimating abundance in unmarked populations of Golden Eagle

Jennifer Stien, Stien Audun, Torkild Tveraa, Lars Rød-Eriksen & Nina Eide
1. Estimates of species abundance are of key importance in population and ecosystem level research but can be hard to obtain. Study designs using camera-traps are increasingly being used for large-scale monitoring of species that are elusive and/or occur naturally at low densities. 2. Golden eagle (Aquila chrysaetos) is one such species, and we investigate whether existing large-scale monitoring programs using baited camera-traps can be used to estimate the abundance of golden eagles, as an...

Circum-Arctic distribution of chemical anti-herbivore compounds arctic shrubs

Elin Lindén, Mariska Te Beest, Ilka Abreu, Thomas Moritz, Maja Sundqvist, Isabel C Barrio, Julia Boike, John Bryant, Kari Anne Bråthen, Agata Buchwal, Guillermo Bueno, Alain Cuerrier, Dagmar Egelkraut, Bruce Forbes, Martin Hallinger, Monique Heijmans, Luise Hermanutz, David S Hik, Annika Hofgaard, Milena Holmgren, Diane C Huebner, Toke Hoye, Ingibjörg Jónsdóttir, Elina Kaarlejärvi, Emilie Kissler … & Johan Olofsson
Spatial variation in plant chemical defence towards herbivores can help us understand variation in herbivore top-down control of shrubs in the Arctic and possibly also shrub responses to global warming. Less defended, non-resinous shrubs could be more influenced by herbivores than more defended, resinous shrubs. However, sparse field measurements limit our current understanding of how much of the circum-Arctic variation in defence compounds is explained by taxa or defence functional groups (resinous/non-resinous). We measured circum-Arctic...

Data from: Recovery of large carnivores in Europe’s modern human-dominated landscapes

Guillaume Chapron, Petra Kaczensky, John D. C. Linnell, Manuela Von Arx, Djuro Huber, Henrik Andrén, José Vicente López-Bao, Michal Adamec, Francisco Álvares, Ole Anders, Linas Balčiauskas, Vaidas Balys, Péter Bedő, Ferdinand Bego, Juan Carlos Blanco, Urs Breitenmoser, Henrik Brøseth, Luděk Bufka, Raimonda Bunikyte, Paolo Ciucci, Alexander Dutsov, Thomas Engleder, Christian Fuxjäger, Claudio Groff, Katja Holmala … & Luigi Boitani
The conservation of large carnivores is a formidable challenge for biodiversity conservation. Using a data set on the past and current status of brown bears (Ursus arctos), Eurasian lynx (Lynx lynx), gray wolves (Canis lupus), and wolverines (Gulo gulo) in European countries, we show that roughly one-third of mainland Europe hosts at least one large carnivore species, with stable or increasing abundance in most cases in 21st-century records. The reasons for this overall conservation success...

Neutral processes related to regional bee commonness and dispersal distances are important predictors of plant-pollinator networks along gradients of climate and landscape conditions

Markus Arne Sydenham, Zander Venter, Stein Moe, Katrine Eldegard, Michael Kuhlmann, Trond Reitan, Claus Rasmussen, Robert Paxton, Yoko Dupont, Astrid Skrindo, Megan Nowell, Stein Hegland, Anders Nielsen, Jens Olesen & Graciela Rusch
Understanding how niche-based and neutral processes contribute to the spatial variation in plant-pollinator interactions is central to designing effective pollination conservation schemes. Such schemes are needed to reverse declines of wild bees and other pollinating insects and to promote pollination services to wild and cultivated plants. We used data on wild bee interactions with plants belonging to the four tribes Loteae, Trifolieae, Anthemideae, and either spring- or summer-flowering Cichorieae, sampled systematically along a 682km latitudinal...

Data from: Pathways of introduction of alien species in Norway

Hanno Sandvik, Siri L. Olsen, Joachim P. Töpper & Olga Hilmo
1. Alien species constitute one of the major threats to global biodiversity. Stopping alien species at an early stage, preferably before establishment, is crucial for the effectiveness of management actions. To enable early detection and prevent future introductions, knowledge of pathways of introduction and their absolute and relative importance is crucial. 2. Based on an exhaustive impact assessment of all alien species in Norway (multicellular neobiota), the relation of taxonomy, lifestyle and ecological impact of...

Data from: Ecological impact assessments of alien species in Norway

Hanno Sandvik, Olga Hilmo, Snorre Henriksen, Reidar Elven, Per Arvid Åsen, Hanne Hegre, Oddvar Pedersen, Per Anker Pedersen, Heidi Solstad, Vigdis Vandvik, Kristine B. Westergaard, Frode Ødegaard, Sandra Åström, Hallvard Elven, Anders Endrestøl, Øivind Gammelmo, Bjørn Arild Hatteland, Halvor Solheim, Björn Nordén, Leif Sundheim, Venche Talgø, Tone Falkenhaug, Bjørn Gulliksen, Anders Jelmert, Eivind Oug … & Lisbeth Gederaas
Due to globalisation, trade and transport, the spread of alien species is increasing dramatically. Some alien species become ecologically harmful by threatening native biota. This can lead to irreversible changes in local biodiversity and ecosystem functioning, and, ultimately, to biotic homogenisation. We risk-assessed all alien plants, animals, fungi and algae, within certain delimitations, that are known to reproduce in Norway. Mainland Norway and the Arctic archipelago of Svalbard plus Jan Mayen were treated as separate...

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