96 Works

A new method to reconstruct quantitative food webs and nutrient flows from isotope tracer addition experiments

Andres Lopez-Sepulcre, Matthieu Bruneaux, Sarah Michelle Collins, Rana El-Sabaawi, Alexander S Flecker & Steven A Thomas
Understanding how nutrients flow through food webs is central in ecosystem ecology. Tracer addition experiments are powerful tools to reconstruct nutrient flows by adding an isotopically enriched element into an ecosystem, and tracking its fate through time. Historically, the design and analysis of tracer studies have varied widely, ranging from descriptive studies to modeling approaches of varying complexity. Increasingly, isotope tracer data is being used being used to compare ecosystems and analyze experimental manipulations. Currently,...

Data from: The unique ecology of human predators

Chris T. Darimont, Caroline H. Fox, Heather M. Bryan & Thomas E. Reimchen
Paradigms of sustainable exploitation focus on population dynamics of prey and yields to humanity but ignore the behavior of humans as predators. We compared patterns of predation by contemporary hunters and fishers with those of other predators that compete over shared prey (terrestrial mammals and marine fishes). Our global survey (2125 estimates of annual finite exploitation rate) revealed that humans kill adult prey, the reproductive capital of populations, at much higher median rates than other...

Data from: Size structuring and allometric scaling relationships in coral reef fishes

Jillian C. Dunic & Julia K. Baum
Temperate marine fish communities are often size structured, with predators consuming increasingly larger prey and feeding at higher trophic levels as they grow. Gape limitation and ontogenetic diet shifts are key mechanisms by which size structuring arises in these communities. Little is known, however, about size structuring in coral reef fishes. Here, we aimed to advance understanding of size structuring in coral reef food webs by examining the evidence for these mechanisms in two groups...

Data from: Generality of toxins in defensive symbiosis: ribosome-inactivating proteins and defense against parasitic wasps in Drosophila

Matthew J. Ballinger & Steve J. Perlman
While it has become increasingly clear that multicellular organisms often harbor microbial symbionts that protect their hosts against natural enemies, the mechanistic underpinnings underlying most defensive symbioses are largely unknown. Spiroplasma bacteria are widespread associates of terrestrial arthropods, and include strains that protect diverse Drosophila flies against parasitic wasps and nematodes. Recent work implicated a ribosome-inactivating protein (RIP) encoded by Spiroplasma, and related to Shiga-like toxins in enterohemorrhagic Escherichia coli, in defense against a virulent...

Data from: Stoichiometric traits of stickleback: effects of genetic background, rearing environment, and ontogeny

Miguel Costa Leal, Rebecca J. Best, Dan Durston, Rana W. El-Sabaawi & Blake Matthews
Phenotypes can both evolve in response to, and affect, ecosystem change, but few examples of diverging ecosystem-effect traits have been investigated. Bony armor traits of fish are good candidates for this because they evolve rapidly in some freshwa- ter fish populations, and bone is phosphorus rich and likely to affect nutrient recycling in aquatic ecosystems. Here, we explore how ontogeny, rearing environment, and bone allocation among body parts affect the stoichiometric phenotype (i.e., stoichio- metric...

Data from: Salmonid species diversity predicts salmon consumption by terrestrial wildlife

Christina N. Service, Andrew W. Bateman, Megan S. Adams, Kyle A. Artelle, Thomas E. Reimchen, Paul C. Paquet & Chris T. Darimont
1. Resource waves - spatial variation in resource phenology that extends feeding opportunities for mobile consumers - can affect the behaviour and productivity of recipient populations. Interspecific diversity among Pacific salmon species (Oncorhynchus spp.) creates staggered spawning events across space and time, thereby prolonging availability to terrestrial wildlife. 2. We aim to understand how such variation might influence consumption by terrestrial predators compared with resource abundance and intra- and inter- specific competition. 3. Using stable...

Data from: Fearlessness towards extirpated large carnivores may exacerbate the impacts of naïve mesocarnivores

Justin P. Suraci, Devin J. Roberts, Michael Clinchy & Liana Y. Zanette
By suppressing mesocarnivore foraging, the fear large carnivores inspire can be critical to mitigating mesocarnivore impacts. Where large carnivores have declined, mesocarnivores may quantitatively increase foraging, commensurate with reductions in fear. The extirpation of large carnivores may further exacerbate mesocarnivore impacts by causing qualitative changes in mesocarnivore behavior. Error management theory suggests that, where predators are present, prey should be biased towards over-responsiveness to predator cues, abandoning foraging in response to both predator cues and...

Data from: State dependence, personality, and plants: light-foraging decisions in Mimosa pudica (L.)

Franz W. Simon, Christina N. Hodson & Bernard R. Roitberg
Plants make foraging decisions that are dependent on ecological conditions, such as resource availability and distribution. Despite the field of plant behavioral ecology gaining momentum, ecologists still know little about what factors impact plant behavior, especially light-foraging behavior. We made use of the behavioral reaction norm approach to investigate light foraging in a plant species that exhibits rapid movement: Mimosa pudica. We explored how herbivore avoidance behavior in M. pudica (which closes its leaflets temporarily...

Data from: Saprotrophic and ectomycorrhizal fungal sporocarp stoichiometry (C : N : P) across temperate rainforests as evidence of shared nutrient constraints among symbionts

J. Marty Kranabetter, Rachael Harman-Denhoed & Barbara J. Hawkins
Summary: Quantifying nutritional dynamics of free-living saprotrophs and symbiotic ectomycorrhizal fungi (EMF) in the field is challenging, but the stoichiometry of fruiting bodies (sporocarps) may be an effective methodology for this purpose. Carbon (C), nitrogen (N), and phosphorus (P) concentrations of soils, foliage and 146 sporocarp collections were analyzed from 14 Pseudotsuga menziesii var. menziesii stands across a podzolization gradient on Vancouver Island (Canada). N and P concentrations were considerably higher in saprotrophic fungi. Fungal...

Data from: Oxygen limitations on marine animal distributions and the collapse of epibenthic community structure during shoaling hypoxia

Jackson W. F. Chu & Verena Tunnicliffe
Deoxygenation in the global ocean is predicted to induce ecosystem-wide changes. Analysis of multidecadal oxygen time-series projects the northeast Pacific to be a current and future hot spot of oxygen loss. However, the response of marine communities to deoxygenation is unresolved due to the lack of applicable data on component species. We repeated the same benthic transect (n = 10, between 45 and 190 m depths) over 8 years in a seasonally hypoxic fjord using...

Data from: Testing conceptual models of early plant succession across a disturbance gradient

Cynthia C. Chang, Charles B. Halpern, Joseph A. Antos, Meghan L. Avolio, Abir Biswas, James E. Cook, Roger Del Moral, Dylan G. Fischer, Andrés Holz, Robert J. Pabst, Mark E. Swanson & Donald B. Zobel
1.Studies of succession have a long history in ecology, but rigorous tests of general, unifying principles are rare. One barrier to these tests of theory is the paucity of longitudinal studies that span the broad gradients of disturbance severity that characterize large, infrequent disturbances. The cataclysmic eruption of Mount St. Helens (Washington, USA) in 1980 produced a heterogeneous landscape of disturbance conditions, including primary to secondary successional habitats, affording a unique opportunity to explore how...

Data from: Sex and occupation time influence niche space of a recovering keystone predator

Erin U. Rechsteiner, Jane C. Watson, M. Tim Tinker, Linda M. Nichol, Matthew J. Morgan Henderson, Christie J. McMIllan, Mike DeRoos, Marie C. Fournier, Anne K. Salomon, Leah D. Honka & Chris T. Darimont
Predators exert strong effects on ecological communities, particularly when they re-occupy areas after decades of extirpation. Within species, such effects can vary over time and by sex, and cascade across trophic levels. We used a space-for-time substitution to make foraging observations of sea otters (Enhydra lutris) across a gradient of re-occupation (1–30 yrs), and nMDS analysis to ask if 1) sea otter niche space varies as a function of occupation time, and 2) if niche...

Data from: Population genomic analyses reveal a highly differentiated and endangered genetic cluster of northern goshawks (Accipiter gentilis laingi) in Haida Gwaii

Armando Geraldes, Kenneth K. Askelson, Ellen Nikelski, Frank I. Doyle, William L. Harrower, Kevin Winker & Darren E. Irwin
Accurate knowledge of geographic ranges and genetic relationships among populations is important when managing a species or population of conservation concern. Along the western coast of Canada, a subspecies of the northern goshawk (Accipiter gentilis laingi) is legally designated as Threatened. The range and distinctness of this form, in comparison to the broadly distributed North American subspecies (Accipiter gentilis atricapillus), is unclear. Given this morphological uncertainty, we analyzed genomic relationships in thousands of single nucleotide...

Data from: Individual-based measurements of light intensity provide new insights into the effects of artificial light at night on daily rhythms of urban-dwelling songbirds

Davide M. Dominoni, Esther O. Carmona-Wagner, Michaela Hofmann, Bart Kranstauber & Jesko Partecke
1. The growing interest in the effects of light pollution on daily and seasonal cycles of animals has led to a boost of research in recent years. In birds, it has been hypothesized that artificial light at night can affect daily aspects of behaviour, but one caveat is the lack of knowledge about the light intensity that wild animals, such as birds, are exposed to during the night. 2. Organisms have naturally evolved daily rhythms...

Data from: Tree ring δ15N as validation of space-for-time substitution in disturbance studies of forest nitrogen status

J. Marty Kranabetter & Justin A. Meeds
Forest ecosystem nitrogen (N) response to disturbance has often been examined by space-for-time substitution, but there are few objective tests of the possible variation in disturbance type and intensity across chronosequence sites. We hypothesized that tree ring δ15N, as a record of ecosystem N status, could validate chronosequence assumptions and provide isotopic evidence to corroborate N trends. To test this we measured soil N availability, soil δ15N, and foliar N attributes of overstory Douglas-fir (Pseudotsuga...

Data from: Towards the validation of endogenous steroid testing in wildlife hair

Lee Koren, Heather Bryan, Devorah Matas, Simon Tinman, Asa Fahlman, Douglas Whiteside, Judit Smits & Katherine Wynne-Edwards
1. Hair is emerging as a popular tool to examine steroid hormone levels in wild mammals. The reliability of this approach, however, depends on an understanding of steroid hormone incorporation into hair as well as appropriate validations. 2. We reviewed studies that have examined steroid hormones in wildlife hair with the goal of summarizing the analytical, physiological, and biological evidence that this approach is meaningful. Accordingly, we differentiated among validations aimed at evaluating the reliability...

Data from: Expert, crowd, students or algorithm: who holds the key to deep-sea imagery ‘big data’ processing?

Marjolaine Matabos, Maia Hoeberechts, Carol Doya, Jacopo Aguzzi, Jessica Nephin, Tom E. Reimchen, Steve Leaver, Roswitha M. Marx, Alexandra Branzan Albu, Ryan Fier, Ulla Fernandez-Arcaya, S. Kim Juniper & Thomas E. Reimchen
1. Recent technological development has increased our capacity to study the deep sea and the marine benthic realm, particularly with the development of multidisciplinary seafloor observatories. Since 2006, Ocean Networks Canada cabled observatories, has acquired nearly 65 TB and over 90,000 hours of video data from seafloor cameras and Remotely Operated Vehicles (ROVs). Manual processing of these data is time-consuming and highly labour-intensive, and cannot be comprehensively undertaken by individual researchers. These videos contain valuable...

Data from: Mixed-ancestry and admixture in Kaua’i’s feral chickens: invasion of domestic genes into ancient Red Junglefowl reservoirs?

Eben Gering, Martin Johnsson, Pamela Willis, Thomas Getty & Dominic Wright
A major goal of invasion genetics is to determine how establishment histories shape non-native organisms' genotypes and phenotypes. While domesticated species commonly escape cultivation to invade feral habitats, few studies have examined how this process shapes feral gene pools and traits. We collected genomic and phenotypic data from feral chickens (Gallus gallus) on the Hawaiian island of Kauai to (i) ascertain their origins and (ii) measure standing variation in feral genomes, morphology and behaviour. Mitochondrial...

Data from: A comprehensive analysis of teleost MHC class I sequences

Unni Grimholt, Kentaro Tsukamoto, Teruo Azuma, Jong Leong, Ben F. Koop & Johannes M. Dijkstra
Background: MHC class I (MHCI) molecules are the key presenters of peptides generated through the intracellular pathway to CD8-positive T-cells. In fish, MHCI genes were first identified in the early 1990′s, but we still know little about their functional relevance. The expansion and presumed sub-functionalization of cod MHCI and access to many published fish genome sequences provide us with the incentive to undertake a comprehensive study of deduced teleost fish MHCI molecules. Results: We expand...

Data from: Ecophysiological limits to aerobic metabolism in hypoxia determine epibenthic distributions and energy sequestration in the northeast Pacific ocean

Jackson W. F. Chu & Katie S. P. Gale
Expansion of oxygen deficient waters (hypoxia) in the northeast Pacific Ocean (NEP) will have marked impacts on marine life. The response of the resident communities will be a function of their ecophysiological constraints in low oxygen, although this remains untested in the NEP due to a lack of integrative studies. Here, we combine in situ surveys and lab-based respirometry experiments were conducted on three indicator species (spot prawn Pandalus platyceros, slender sole Lyopsetta exilis, squat...

Multispecies modelling reveals potential for habitat restoration to re-establish boreal vertebrate community dynamics

Christopher Beirne, Catherine Sun, Erin Tattersall, Joanna Burgar, Jason Fisher & Cole Burton
1. The restoration of habitats degraded by industrial disturbance is essential for achieving conservation objectives in disturbed landscapes. In boreal ecosystems, disturbances from seismic exploration lines and other linear features have adversely affected biodiversity, most notably leading to declines in threatened woodland caribou. Large-scale restoration of disturbed habitats is needed, yet empirical assessments of restoration effectiveness on wildlife communities remain rare. 2. We used 73 camera trap deployments from 2015-2019 and joint species distribution models...

Data from: Free-living bacterial communities associated with tubeworm (Ridgeia piscesae) aggregations in contrasting diffuse flow hydrothermal vent habitats at the Main Endeavour Field, Juan de Fuca Ridge

Nathalie L. Forget & S. Kim Juniper
We systematically studied free-living bacterial diversity within aggregations of the vestimentiferan tubeworm Ridgeia piscesae sampled from two contrasting flow regimes (High Flow and Low Flow) in the Endeavour Hydrothermal Vents Marine Protected Area (MPA) on the Juan de Fuca Ridge (Northeast Pacific). Eight samples of particulate detritus were recovered from paired tubeworm grabs from four vent sites. Most sequences (454 tag and Sanger methods) were affiliated to the Epsilonproteobacteria, and the sulfur-oxidizing genus Sulfurovum was...

Data from: Molecular study of bacterial diversity within the trophosome of the vestimentiferan tubeworm Ridgeia piscesae

S. Kim Juniper, Maëva Perez & Nathalie L. Forget
A large proportion of the faunal biomass in hydrothermal vent ecosystems relies on symbiotic relationships, with bacteria as a source of nutrition. Whereas multiple symbioses have been observed in diverse vent hosts, siboglinid tubeworms have been thought to harbour a single endosymbiont phylotype affiliated to the Gammaproteobacteria. In the case of the Northeast Pacific vestimentiferan Ridgeia piscesae, two previous studies suggested the presence of more than one symbiont. The possibility of multiple, and possibly habitat-specific,...

Data from: Climate change leads to increasing population density and impacts of a key island invader

Greg T.W. McClelland, Res Altwegg, Rudi J. Van Aarde, Sam Ferreira, Alan E. Burger, Steven L. Chown & Gregory T. W. McClelland
The considerable threats of invasive rodents to island biodiversity are likely to be compounded by climate change. Forecasts for such interactions have been most pronounced for the Southern Ocean islands where ameliorating conditions are expected to decrease thermal and resource restrictions on rodents. Firm evidence for changing rodent populations in response to climate change, and demonstrations of associated impacts on the terrestrial environment, are nonetheless entirely absent for the region. Using data collected over three...

Data from: A novel approach to wildlife transcriptomics provides evidence of disease-mediated differential expression and changes to the microbiome of amphibian populations

Lewis J. Campbell, Stewart A. Hammond, Stephen J. Price, Manmohan D. Sharma, Trenton W.J. Garner, Inanc Birol, Caren C. Helbing, Lena Wilfert, Amber G.F. Griffiths & Trenton W. J. Garner
Ranaviruses are responsible for a lethal, emerging infectious disease in amphibians and threaten their populations throughout the world. Despite this, little is known about how amphibian populations respond to ranaviral infection. In the United Kingdom, ranaviruses impact the common frog (Rana temporaria). Extensive public engagement in the study of ranaviruses in the UK has led to the formation of a unique system of field sites containing frog populations of known ranaviral disease history. Within this...

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