Organisms inhabiting unpredictable environments often evolve diversified reproductive bet-hedging strategies, expressed as production of multiple offspring phenotypes, thereby avoiding complete reproductive failure. To cope with unpredictable rainfall, African annual killifish from temporary savannah pools lay drought-resistant eggs that vary widely in the duration of embryo development. We examined the sources of variability in the duration of individual embryo development, egg production and fertilization rate in Nothobranchius furzeri. Using a quantitative genetics approach (North Carolina Type...
Data from: Hybrid asexuality as a primary postzygotic barrier between nascent species: on the interconnection between asexuality, hybridization and speciationKarel Janko, Jan Pačes, Hilde Wilkinson-Herbots, Rui J. Costa, Jan Roslein, Pavel Drozd, Nataliia Iakovenko, Jakub Rídl, Miluše Hroudová, Jan Kočí, Radka Reifová, Věra Šlechtová & Lukáš Choleva
Although sexual reproduction is ubiquitous throughout nature, the molecular machinery behind it has been repeatedly disrupted during evolution, leading to the emergence of asexual lineages in all eukaryotic phyla. Despite intensive research, little is known about what causes the switch from sexual reproduction to asexuality. Interspecific hybridization is one of the candidate explanations but the reasons for the apparent association between hybridization and asexuality remain unclear. In this study we combined cross-breeding experiments with population...
Data from: Non-breeding range size predicts the magnitude of population trends in trans-Saharan migratory passerine birdsJaroslav Koleček, Petr Procházka, Christina Ieronymidou, Ian J. Burfield & Jiří Reif
Understanding why populations of some migratory species show a directional change over time, i.e. increase or decrease, while others do not, remains a challenge for ecological research. One possible explanation is that species with smaller non-breeding ranges may have more pronounced directional population trends, and their populations are thus more sensitive to the variation in environmental conditions in their non-breeding quarters. According to the serial residency hypothesis, this sensitivity should lead to higher magnitudes (i.e....
Data from: No ecological opportunity signal on a continental scale? Diversification and life-history evolution of African true toads (Anura: Bufonidae)H. Christoph Liedtke, Hendrik Müller, Mark-Oliver Rödel, Michele Menegon, LeGrand Nono Gonwouo, Michael F. Barej, Václav Gvoždík, Andreas Schmitz, Alan Channing, Peter Nagel & Simon P. Loader
The niche-filling process predicted by the “ecological opportunity” (EO) model is an often-invoked mechanism for generating exceptional diversity in island colonizers. Whether the same process governs lineage accumulation and trait disparity during continental colonization events is less clear. Here, we test this prediction by investigating the rate dynamics and trait evolution of one of Africa's most widespread amphibian colonizers, the true toads (Bufonidae). By reconstructing the most complete molecular phylogeny of African Bufonidae to date,...
Data from: Testing the phenotype-linked fertility hypothesis in the presence and absence of inbreedingWolfgang Forstmeier, Malika Ihle, Pavlina Opatova, Katrin Martin, Ulrich Knief, Jana Albrechtová, Tomas Albrecht & Bart Kempenaers
The phenotype-linked fertility hypothesis suggests that females can judge male fertility by inspecting male phenotypic traits. This is because male sexually selected traits might correlate with sperm quality if both are sensitive to factors that influence male condition. A recent meta-analysis found little support for this hypothesis, suggesting little or no shared condition dependence. However, we recently reported that in captive zebra finches (Taeniopygia guttata) inbreeding had detrimental effects both on phenotypic traits and on...
1. Farmland birds have experienced substantial declines over recent decades and various conservation measures have been designed to halt their massive decrease. The effectiveness of these measures is however limited, due to inappropriate identification of crucial breeding and wintering habitats. Identification of appropriate habitats, like farmsteads, and understanding seasonal changes in species richness and abundance of farmland birds within these habitats may therefore be key for farmland bird conservation. 2. We investigated the effect of...
Data from: Idiosyncratic responses to climate-driven forest fragmentation and marine incursions in reed frogs from Central Africa and the Gulf of Guinea IslandsRayna C. Bell, Juan L. Parra, Gabriel Badjedjea, Michael F. Barej, David C. Blackburn, Marius Burger, Alan Channing, J. Maximilian Dehling, Eli Greenbaum, Václav Gvoždík, Jos Kielgast, Chifundera Kusamba, Stefan Lötters, Patrick J. McLaughlin, Zoltán T. Nagy, Mark-Oliver Rödel, Daniel M. Portik, Bryan L. Stuart, Jeremy VanDerWal, Ange-Ghislain Zassi Boulou & Kelly R. Zamudio
Organismal traits interact with environmental variation to mediate how species respond to shared landscapes. Thus, differences in traits related to dispersal ability or physiological tolerance may result in phylogeographic discordance among co-distributed taxa, even when they are responding to common barriers. We quantified climatic suitability and stability, and phylogeographic divergence within three reed frog species complexes across the Guineo-Congolian forests and Gulf of Guinea archipelago of Central Africa to investigate how they responded to a...
Institute of Vertebrate Biology7
University of the Western Cape2
Museum für Naturkunde2
Max Planck Institute for Ornithology1
The University of Texas at Austin1
University of Ostrava1
Museo delle Scienze1
Institute of Animal Physiology and Genetics1