68 Works

Data from: Competition and specialization in an African forest carnivore community

David Mills, Emmanuel Do Linh San, Hugh Robinson, Sam Isoke, Rob Slotow & Luke Hunter
Globally, human activities have led to the impoverishment of species assemblages and the disruption of ecosystem function. Determining whether this poses a threat to future ecosystem stability necessitates a thorough understanding of mechanisms underpinning community assembly and niche selection. Here, we tested for niche segregation within an African small carnivore community in Kibale National Park, Uganda. We used occupancy modelling based on systematic camera trap surveys and fine-scale habitat measures, to identify opposing preferences between...

Data from: Herbivore size matters for productivity-richness relationships in African savannas

Deron E. Burkepile, Richard W. S. Fynn, Dave I. Thompson, Nathan P. Lemoine, Sally E. Koerner, Stephanie Eby, Nicole Hagenah, Kevin R. Wilcox, Scott L. Collins, Kevin P. Kirkman, Alan K. Knapp & Melinda D. Smith
1.Productivity and herbivory often interact to shape plant community composition and species richness with levels of production mediating the impact of herbivory. Yet, differences in herbivore traits such as size, feeding guild, and dietary requirements may result in different impacts of diverse herbivore guilds across productivity gradients. 2.We used size-selective herbivore exclosures to separate the effects of herbivory by larger herbivores, such as elephant, Burchell's zebra, and blue wildebeest from those of medium/smaller herbivores, such...

Data from: Delays and loss to follow up before treatment of drug-resistant TB following implementation of Xpert MTB/RIF in South Africa: a retrospective cohort study

Helen Cox, Lindy Dickson-Hall, Norbert Ndjeka, Anja Van't Hoog, Alison Grant, Frank Cobelens, Wendy Stevens, Mark Nicol & Anja Van’t Hoog
Background: South Africa has a large burden of rifampicin-resistant tuberculosis (RR-TB), with 18,734 patients diagnosed in 2014. The number of diagnosed patients has increased substantially with the introduction of the Xpert MTB/RIF test, used for TB diagnosis for all patients with presumptive TB. Routine aggregate data suggest a large treatment gap (pre-treatment loss to follow up) between the numbers of laboratory confirmed RR-TB patients and those reported to have started second-line treatment. We aimed to...

Data from: Carnivore carcasses are avoided by carnivores

Marcos Moleon, Carlos Martínez-Carrasco, Oliver Muellerklein, Wayne Getz, Carlos Muñoz-Lozano, José Antonio Sánchez-Zapata & Wayne M. Getz
1. Ecologists have traditionally focused on herbivore carcasses as study models in scavenging research. However, some observations of scavengers avoiding feeding on carnivore carrion suggest that different types of carrion may lead to differential pressures. Untested assumptions about carrion produced at different trophic levels could therefore lead ecologists to overlook important evolutionary processes and their ecological consequences. 2. Our general goal was to investigate the use of mammalian carnivore carrion by vertebrate scavengers. In particular,...

Data from: The influence of balanced and imbalanced resource supply on biodiversity-functioning relationship across ecosystems

Aleksandra M. Lewandowska, Antje Biermann, Elizabeth T. Borer, Miguel A. Cebrian-Piqueras, Steven A. J. Declerck, Luc De Meester, Ellen Van Donk, Lars Gamfeldt, Daniel S. Gruner, Nicole Hagenah, W. Stanley Harpole, Kevin P. Kirkman, Christopher A. Klausmeier, Michael Kleyer, Johannes M. H. Knops, Pieter Lemmens, Eric M. Lind, Elena Litchman, Jasmin Mantilla-Contreras, Koen Martens, Sandra Meier, Vanessa Minden, Joslin L. Moore, Harry Olde Venterink, Eric W. Seabloom … & Helmut Hillebrand
Numerous studies show that increasing species richness leads to higher ecosystem productivity. This effect is often attributed to more efficient portioning of multiple resources in communities with higher numbers of competing species, indicating the role of resource supply and stoichiometry for biodiversity–ecosystem functioning relationships. Here, we merged theory on ecological stoichiometry with a framework of biodiversity–ecosystem functioning to understand how resource use transfers into primary production. We applied a structural equation model to define patterns...

Data from: Topographic mapping of the interfaces between human and aquatic mosquito habitats to enable barrier-targeting of interventions against malaria vectors

Victoria M. Mwakalinga, Benn K.D. Sartorius, Alex J. Limwagu, Yeromin P. Mlacha, Daniel F. Msellemu, Prosper P. Chaki, Nicoderm J. Govella, Maureen Coetzee, Stefan Dongus, Gerry F. Killeen, Nicodem J. Govella & Benn K. D. Sartorius
Geophysical topographic metrics of local water-accumulation potential are freely available and have long been known as high resolution predictors of where aquatic habitats for immature Anopheles mosquitoes are most abundant, resulting in elevated densities of adult malaria vectors and human infection burden. Using existing entomological and epidemiological survey data, here we illustrate how topography can also be used to map out the interfaces between wet, unoccupied valleys and dry, densely populated uplands, where malaria vector...

Data from: Context-dependent reproductive isolation mediated by floral scent and color

Mascha Bischoff, Robert A. Raguso, Andreas Jürgens & Diane R. Campbell
Reproductive isolation due to pollinator behavior is considered a key mode of speciation in flowering plants. Although floral scent is thought to mediate pollinator behavior, little is known about its effects on pollinator attraction and floral visitation in the wild. We used field experiments with wild hawkmoths and laboratory experiments with naïve hawkmoths to investigate attraction to and probing of flowers in response to indole, a volatile emitted by Ipomopsis tenuituba but not its close...

Data from: Herbivory and eutrophication mediate grassland plant nutrient responses across a global climatic gradient

T. Michael Anderson, Daniel M. Griffith, James B. Grace, Eric M. Lind, Peter B. Adler, Lori A. Biederman, Dana M. Blumenthal, Pedro Daleo, Jennifer Firn, Nicole Hagenah, W. Stanley Harpole, Andrew S. MacDougall, Rebecca L. McCulley, Suzanne M. Prober, Anita C. Risch, Mahesh Sankaran, Martin Schütz, Eric W. Seabloom, Carly J. Stevens, Lauren L. Sullivan, Peter D. Wragg & Elizabeth T. Borer
Plant stoichiometry, the relative concentration of elements, is a key regulator of ecosystem functioning and is also being altered by human activities. In this paper we sought to understand the global drivers of plant stoichiometry and compare the relative contribution of climatic vs. anthropogenic effects. We addressed this goal by measuring plant elemental (C, N, P and K) responses to eutrophication and vertebrate herbivore exclusion at eighteen sites on six continents. Across sites, climate and...

Data from: Structural habitat predicts functional dispersal habitat of a large carnivore: how leopards change spots

Julien Fattebert, Hugh S. Robinson, Guy Balme, Rob Slotow & Luke Hunter
Natal dispersal promotes inter-population linkage, and is key to spatial distribution of populations. Degradation of suitable landscape structures beyond the specific threshold of an individual's ability to disperse can therefore lead to disruption of functional landscape connectivity and impact metapopulation function. Because it ignores behavioral responses of individuals, structural connectivity is easier to assess than functional connectivity and is often used as a surrogate for landscape connectivity modeling. However using structural resource selection models as...

Data from: Community-level responses of African carnivores to prescribed burning

Laura Gigliotti, Goncalo Curveira-Santos, Rob Slotow, Craig Sholto-Douglas, Lourens Swanepoel & David Jachowski
Fires are common in many ecosystems worldwide, and are frequently used as a management tool. Although the responses of herbivores to fire have been well-studied, the responses of carnivores to fire remain unclear. In particular, post-fire habitat changes, and the associated changes in prey availability, might affect the coexistence or competition of carnivore species within the larger carnivore community, but few studies have focused on how fires influence multiple carnivore species simultaneously. Using South African...

Pollinator community predicts trait-matching between oil-producing flowers and a guild of oil-collecting bees

Hilke Hollens-Kuhr, Timotheüs Van Der Niet, Ruth Cozien & Michael Kuhlmann
The impact of pollinator community diversity on trait-matching in plant-pollinator interactions is poorly studied, even though many mutualisms involve multiple interaction partners. We studied ten communities in which one to three species of oil-collecting Rediviva bee pollinate the long-spurred, oil-producing flowers of Diascia ‘floribunda’ to examine how pollinator diversity affects covariation of functional traits across sites and trait-matching within sites. Floral spur-length was significantly correlated with weighted grand mean foreleg length of the local bee...

Comparative performance of rural water supplies during drought - dataset

DJ. MacAllister, A.M. MacDonald, S. Kebede, S. Godfrey & R. Calow
Ethiopia experienced severe drought in 2015-16. Many rural communities experienced declines in the performance of their water supply systems. As a result UNICEF commissioned a real-time monitoring and responsive operation and maintenance programme for point source rural water supplies across Central, Northern and Eastern Ethiopia. The water point monitoring survey was coordinated by UNICEF and conducted by World Vision Ethiopia and Oxfam Ethiopia. Data was collected between January and May 2016. Akvo Flow, a mobile...

Data from: Influence of killing method on Lepidoptera DNA barcode recovery

Sandi Willows-Munro & M. Corrie Schoeman
The global DNA barcoding initiative has revolutionized the field of biodiversity research. Such large-scale sequencing projects require the collection of large numbers of specimens, which need to be killed and preserved in a way that is both DNA-friendly and which will keep voucher specimens in good condition for later study. Factors such as time since collection, correct storage (exposure to free water and heat) and DNA extraction protocol are known to play a role in...

Data from: Cryptic diversity in black rats Rattus rattus of the Galápagos Islands, Ecuador

Sandi Willows-Munro, Robert C. Dowler, Michael R. Jarcho, Reese B. Phillips, Howard L. Snell, Tammy R. Wilbert & Cody W. Edwards
Human activity has facilitated the introduction of a number of alien mammal species to the Galápagos Archipelago. Understanding the phylogeographic history and population genetics of invasive species on the Archipelago is an important step in predicting future spread and designing effective management strategies. In this study, we describe the invasion pathway of Rattus rattus across the Galápagos using microsatellite data, coupled with historical knowledge. Microsatellite genotypes were generated for 581 R. rattus sampled from 15...

Data from: Demography and social dynamics of an African elephant population 35 years after reintroduction as juveniles

Timothy R. Kuiper, Dave J. Druce & Heleen C. Druce
1. Given their vulnerability to local extinction, the reintroduction of megafauna species (often long-lived, ecologically-influential and highly-social) is an increasingly relevant conservation intervention. Studies that evaluate past megafauna reintroductions are both critical and rare. 2. Between 1981 and 1996, 12 cohorts of a total of 200 juvenile (<5 years old) African savanna elephants (Loxodonta africana africana) were re-introduced to Hluhluwe-iMfolozi Park (HiP), South Africa, after 100 years of absence. Here we model the population’s long...

Data from: Foraging efficiency and size matching in a plant – pollinator community: the importance of sugar content and tongue length

Saskia G.T. Klumpers, Martina Stang & Peter G.L. Klinkhamer
A longstanding question in ecology is how species interactions are structured within communities. Although evolutionary theory predicts close size matching between floral nectar tube depth and pollinator proboscis length of interacting species, such size matching has seldom been shown and explained in multispecies assemblages. Here, we investigated the degree of size matching among Asteraceae and their pollinators and its relationship with foraging efficiency. The majority of pollinators, especially Hymenoptera, choose plant species on which they...

Data from: Fire frequency drives habitat selection by a diverse herbivore guild impacting top–down control of plant communities in an African savanna

Deron E. Burkepile, Dave I. Thompson, Richard W. S. Fynn, Sally E. Koerner, Stephanie Eby, Navashni Govender, Nicole Hagenah, Nathan P. Lemoine, Katherine J. Matchett, Kevin R. Wilcox, Scott L. Collins, Kevin P. Kirkman, Alan K. Knapp & Melinda D. Smith
In areas with diverse herbivore communities such as African savannas, the frequency of disturbance by fire may alter the top–down role of different herbivore species on plant community dynamics. In a seven year experiment in the Kruger National Park, South Africa, we examined the habitat use of nine common herbivore species across annually burned, triennially burned and unburned areas. We also used two types of exclosures (plus open access controls) to examine the impacts of...

Phylogenomics and species delimitation for effective conservation of manta and devil rays

Emily Humble, Jane Hosegood, Rob Ogden, Mark De Bruyn, Simon Creer, Guy Stevens, Mohammed Abudaya, Kim Bassos-Hull, Ramon Bonfil, Daniel Fernando, Andrew Foote, Helen Hipperson, Rima Jabado, Jenny Kaden, Muhammad Moazzam, Lauren Peel, Stephen Pollett, Alessandro Ponzo, Marloes Poortvliet, Jehad Salah, Helen Senn, Joshua Stewart, Sabine Wintner & Gary Carvalho
Practical biodiversity conservation relies on delineation of biologically meaningful units. Manta and devil rays (Mobulidae) are threatened worldwide, yet morphological similarities and a succession of recent taxonomic changes impede the development of an effective conservation strategy. Here, we generate genome-wide single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) data from a geographically and taxonomically representative set of manta and devil ray samples to reconstruct phylogenetic relationships and evaluate species boundaries under the general lineage concept. We show that nominal...

Data from: Fat, fibre and cancer risk in African Americans and rural Africans

Stephen J. D. O’Keefe, Jia V. Li, Leo Lahti, Junhai Ou, Franck Carbonero, Mohammed Khaled, Joram M. Posma, James Kinross, Elaine Wahl, Elizabeth Ruder, Kishore Vipperla, Vasudevan Naidoo, Lungile Mtshali, Sebastian Tims, Philippe G. B. Puylaert, James DeLany, Alyssa Krasinskas, Ann C. Benefiel, Hatem O. Kaseb, Keith Newton, Jeremy K. Nicholson, Willem M. De Vos, H. Rex Gaskins & Erwin G. Zoetendal
Rates of colon cancer are much higher in African Americans (65:100,000) than in rural South Africans (<5:100,000). The higher rates are associated with higher animal protein and fat, and lower fibre consumption, higher colonic secondary bile acids, lower colonic short-chain fatty acid quantities and higher mucosal proliferative biomarkers of cancer risk in otherwise healthy middle-aged volunteers. Here we investigate further the role of fat and fibre in this association. We performed 2-week food exchanges in...

Data from: The functional significance of complex floral colour pattern in a food-deceptive orchid

Xiaokai Ma, Jun Shi, Hans Banziger, Yangna Sun, Yanyan Guo, Zhongjian Liu, Steven D. Johnson & Yibo Luo
Many non-rewarding orchid species mimic the signals of co-occurring food flowers and thereby attract food-seeking animal pollinators. These signals are often visually complex with a colour pattern that contrasts between outer and central parts. The significance of this colour complexity for the pollination success of flowers of deceptive orchids has scarcely been investigated. We tested the effects of the colour patterns of the food-deceptive orchid Paphiopedilum micranthum on bumblebee visitation choices and pollination success using...

Data from: Floral trait evolution associated with shifts between insect and wind pollination in the dioecious genus Leucadendron (Proteaceae)

Megan Rae Welsford, Nina Hobbhahn, Jeremy J. Midgley & Steven D. Johnson
Transitions between animal and wind pollination have occurred in many lineages and have been linked to various floral modifications, but these have seldom been assessed in a phylogenetic framework. In the dioecious genus Leucadendron (Proteaceae), transitions from insect to wind pollination have occurred at least four times. Using analyses that controlled for relatedness among Leucadendron species, we investigated how these transitions shaped the evolution of floral structural and signaling traits, including the degree of sexual...

Data from: Thermal resilience may shape population abundance of two sympatric congeneric Cotesia species (Hymenoptera: Braconidae)

Reyard Mutamiswa, Honest Machekano, Frank Chidawanyika & Casper Nyamukondiwa
Basal and plasticity of thermal tolerance determine abundance, biogeographical patterns and activity of insects over spatial and temporal scales. For coexisting stemborer parasitoids, offering synergistic impact to the efficacy of biological control, mismatches in thermal tolerance may influence their ultimate impact in biocontrol programs under climate variability. Using laboratory-reared congeneric parasitoid species Cotesia sesamiae and Cotesia flavipes Cameron (Hymenoptera: Braconidae), we examined basal thermal tolerance to understand potential impact of climate variability on their survival...

CLiP South Africa Marine Litter Accumulation Study (Cefas-UKZN) 2019

This dataset contains 2 csv files. The file South_Africa_Marine_Litter_Data.csv contains data on marine litter found during beach surveys in Umhlanga (north of Durban) and Amanzimtoti (south of Durban) in South Africa in September 2019. The number of items and the weight in kg is reported for each litter category. Each survey is named with the name of the location plus a capital letter between A and L for Amanzimtoti; and between A and K for...

Addressing Uncorrected Refractive Error Through Human Resource Development in the Context of Mozambique

Stephen Thompson, James Loughman, Prasidh Ramson, Luigi Bilotto & Kovin Naidoo

Comparative performance of rural water supplies during drought - dataset

DJ. MacAllister, A.M. MacDonald, S Kebede, &
Ethiopia experienced severe drought in 2015-16. Many rural communities experienced declines in the performance of their water supply systems. As a result UNICEF commissioned a real-time monitoring and responsive operation and maintenance programme for point source rural water supplies across Central, Northern and Eastern Ethiopia. The water point monitoring survey was coordinated by UNICEF and conducted by World Vision Ethiopia and Oxfam Ethiopia. Data was collected between January and May 2016. Akvo Flow, a mobile...

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  • University of KwaZulu-Natal
  • University of California, Berkeley
  • University of Cape Town
  • University of Minnesota
  • Panthera Corporation
  • University of the Witwatersrand
  • University of Montana
  • University College London
  • Agricultural Research Council
  • Wageningen University & Research