50 Works

Data from: Spatial heterogeneity lowers rather than increases host-parasite specialization

Elze Hesse, Alex Best, Michael Boots, Alex R. Hall & Angus Buckling
Abiotic environmental heterogeneity can promote the evolution of diverse resource specialists, which in turn may increase the degree of host-parasite specialization. We coevolved Pseudomonas fluorescens and lytic phage ϕ2 in spatially structured populations, each consisting of two interconnected subpopulations evolving in the same or different nutrient media (homogeneous and heterogeneous environments, respectively). Counter to the normal expectation, host-parasite specialization was significantly lower in heterogeneous compared with homogeneous environments. This result could not be explained by...

Data from: Determinants of flammability in savanna grass species

Kimberley J. Simpson, Brad S. Ripley, Pascal-Antione Christin, Claire M. Belcher, Caroline E. R. Lehmann, Gavin H. Thomas, Colin P. Osborne & Pascal-Antoine Christin
1. Tropical grasses fuel the majority of fires on Earth. In fire-prone landscapes, enhanced flammability may be adaptive for grasses via the maintenance of an open canopy and an increase in spatiotemporal opportunities for recruitment and regeneration. In addition, by burning intensely but briefly, high flammability may protect resprouting buds from lethal temperatures. Despite these potential benefits of high flammability to fire-prone grasses, variation in flammability among grass species, and how trait differences underpin this...

Data from: The influence of nonrandom extra-pair paternity on heritability estimates derived from wild pedigrees

Josh A. Firth, Jarrod D. Hadfield, Anna W. Santure, Jon Slate & Ben C. Sheldon
Quantitative genetic analysis is often fundamental for understanding evolutionary processes in wild populations. Avian populations provide a model system due to the relative ease of inferring relatedness amongst individuals through observation. However, extra-pair paternity (EPP) creates erroneous links within the social pedigree. Previous work has suggested this causes minor underestimation of heritability if paternal misassignment is random and hence not influenced by the trait being studied. Nevertheless, much literature suggests numerous traits are associated with...

Data from: The bright incubate at night: sexual dichromatism and adaptive incubation division in an open-nesting shorebird

Kasun B. Ekanayake, Michael A. Weston, Dale G. Nimmo, Grainne S. Maguire, John A. Endler & Clemens Kupper
Ornamentation of parents poses a high risk for offspring because it reduces cryptic nest defence. Over a century ago, Wallace proposed that sexual dichromatism enhances crypsis of open-nesting females although subsequent studies found that dichromatism per se is not necessarily adaptive. We tested whether reduced female ornamentation in a sexually dichromatic species reduces the risk of clutch depredation and leads to adaptive parental roles in the red-capped plover Charadrius ruficapillus, a species with biparental incubation....

Data from: The genetic architecture of hybrid incompatibilities and their effect on barriers to introgression in secondary contact

Dorothea Lindtke & C. Alex Buerkle
Genetic incompatibilities are an important component of reproductive isolation. Although theoretical studies have addressed their evolution, little is known about their maintenance when challenged by potentially high migration rates in secondary contact. Whereas theory predicts that recombination can erode barriers, many empirical systems have been found to retain species-specific differences despite substantial gene flow. By simulating whole genomes in individuals of hybridizing species, we find that the genetic architecture of two contrasting models of epistatic...

Data from: Are extra-pair males different from cuckolded males? An empirical and meta-analytic examination

Yu-Hsun Hsu, Julia Schroeder, Isabel Winney, Terry Burke & Shinichi Nakagawa
Traditional models for female extra-pair matings assume that females benefit indirectly from extra-pair mating behaviour. Under these so-called adaptive models, extra-pair males are hypothesized to have more compatible genotypes, larger body size, exaggerated ornaments or to be older than cuckolded males. Alternatively, (‘nonadaptive’) models that consider female extra-pair matings to be a by-product posit that female extra-pair mating can be maintained even if there is no benefit to females. This could happen if, for example,...

Data from: Reduced fitness in progeny from old parents in a natural population

Julia Schroeder, Shinichi Nakagawa, Mark Rees, Maria-Elena Mannarelli & Terry Burke
A nongenetic, transgenerational effect of parental age on offspring fitness has been described in many taxa in the laboratory. Such a transgenerational fitness effect will have important influences on population dynamics, population age structure, and the evolution of aging and lifespan. However, effects of parental age on offspring lifetime fitness have never been demonstrated in a natural population. We show that parental age has sex-specific negative effects on lifetime fitness, using data from a pedigreed...

Data from: The genetic structure of Nautilus pompilius populations surrounding Australia and the Philippines

Rachel C. Williams, Benjamin C. Jackson, Ludovic Duvaux, Deborah A. Dawson, Terry Burke & William Sinclair
Understanding the distribution of genetic diversity in exploited species is fundamental to successful conservation. Genetic structure and the degree of gene flow among populations must be assessed to design appropriate strategies to prevent the loss of distinct populations. The cephalopod Nautilus pompilius is fished unsustainably in the Philippines for the ornamental shell trade and has limited legislative protection, despite the species' recent dramatic decline in the region. Here, we use 14 microsatellite markers to evaluate...

Data from: A microsatellite-based linkage map for song sparrows (Melospiza melodia)

Pirmin Nietlisbach, Glauco Camenisch, Thomas Bucher, Jon Slate, Lukas F. Keller & Erik Postma
Although linkage maps are important tools in evolutionary biology, their availability for wild populations is limited. The population of song sparrows (Melospiza melodia) on Mandarte Island, Canada, is among the more intensively studied wild animal populations. Its long-term pedigree data, together with extensive genetic sampling, have allowed the study of a range of questions in evolutionary biology and ecology. However, the availability of genetic markers has been limited. We here describe 191 new microsatellite loci,...

Data from: MHC class II assortative mate choice in European badgers (Meles meles)

Yung Wa Sin, Geetha Annavi, Chris Newman, Christina Buesching, Terry Burke, David W. Macdonald & Hannah L. Dugdale
The major histocompatibility complex (MHC) plays a crucial role in the immune system, and in some species, it is a target by which individuals choose mates to optimize the fitness of their offspring, potentially mediated by olfactory cues. Under the genetic compatibility hypothesis, individuals are predicted to choose mates with compatible MHC alleles, to increase the fitness of their offspring. Studies of MHC-based mate choice in wild mammals are under-represented currently, and few investigate more...

Data from: Disruptive viability selection on a black plumage trait associated with dominance

Paul Acker, Arnaud Grégoire, Margaux Rat, Claire N. Spottiswoode, René E. Van Dijk, Matthieu Paquet, Jennifer C. Kaden, Roger Pradel, Ben J. Hatchwell, Rita Covas & Claire Doutrelant
Traits used in communication, such as colour signals, are expected to have positive consequences for reproductive success, but their associations with survival are little understood. Previous studies have mainly investigated linear relationships between signals and survival, but both hump-shaped and U-shaped relationships can also be predicted, depending on the main costs involved in trait expression. Furthermore, few studies have taken the plasticity of signals into account in viability selection analyses. The relationship between signal expression...

Data from: The alignment between phenotypic plasticity, the major axis of genetic variation and the response to selection

Martin I. Lind, Kylie Yarlett, Julia Reger, Mauricio J. Carter & Andrew P. Beckerman
Phenotypic plasticity is the ability of a genotype to produce more than one phenotype in order to match the environment. Recent theory proposes that the major axis of genetic variation in a phenotypically plastic population can align with the direction of selection. Therefore, theory predicts that plasticity directly aids adaptation by increasing genetic variation in the direction favoured by selection and reflected in plasticity. We evaluated this theory in the freshwater crustacean Daphnia pulex, facing...

Data from: Distinguishing between determinate and indeterminate growth in a long-lived mammal

Hannah S. Mumby, Simon N. Chapman, Jennie A. H. Crawley, Khyne U. Mar, Win Htut, Aung Thura Soe, Htoo Htoo Aung & Virpi Lummaa
Background: The growth strategy of a species influences many key aspects of its life-history. Animals can either grow indeterminately (throughout life), or grow determinately, ceasing at maturity. In mammals, continued weight gain after maturity is clearly distinguishable from continued skeletal growth (indeterminate growth). Elephants represent an interesting candidate for studying growth because of their large size, long life and sexual dimorphism. Objective measures of their weight, height and age, however, are rare. Results: We investigate...

Data from: Range expansion and retraction along a moving contact zone has no effect on the genetic diversity of two passerine birds

Jan O. Engler, Jean Secondi, Deborah A. Dawson, Ortwin Elle & Axel Hochkirch
Disentangling the factors shaping species distributions remains a central goal in biogeography, ecology and evolutionary biology. The extrinsic pressures that may facilitate range shifts, such as climatic factors or biotic interactions are well known. However, in contrast, the possible intrinsic factors are manifold and hard to generalize across taxa. Recently, several theoretical studies have investigated the consequences of moving range borders on genetic diversity. However, empirical studies that support or refute these theoretical predictions are...

Data from: Troubleshooting the potential pitfalls of cross-fostering

Isabel S. Winney, Shinichi Nakagawa, Yu-Hsun Hsu, Terry Burke, Julia Schroeder & Isabel Winney
1. Cross-fostering is the transfer of offspring between their natal environment and a new social environment. This method allows researchers to disentangle the genetic and interacting environmental effects that influence phenotypes, and is popular in both wild and laboratory studies. Here, we discuss three factors that might bias cross-fostering and influence ecological and evolutionary conclusions if not accommodated. 2. First, cross-fostering tends to be spatially and temporally non-random because heterogeneous breeding conditions can result in...

Data from: Experimental evidence for phonemic contrasts in a nonhuman vocal system

Sabrina Engesser, Jodie M. S. Crane, James L. Savage, Andrew F. Russell & Simon W. Townsend
The ability to generate new meaning by rearranging combinations of meaningless sounds is a fundamental component of language. Although animal vocalizations often comprise combinations of meaningless acoustic elements, evidence that rearranging such combinations generates functionally distinct meaning is lacking. Here, we provide evidence for this basic ability in calls of the chestnut-crowned babbler (Pomatostomus ruficeps), a highly cooperative bird of the Australian arid zone. Using acoustic analyses, natural observations, and a series of controlled playback...

Data from: The genetic architecture of sexually selected traits in two natural populations of Drosophila montana

Paris Veltsos, Emma Gregson, Barbara Morrissey, Jon Slate, Anneli Hoikkala, Roger K. Butlin & Michael G. Ritchie
We investigated the genetic architecture of courtship song and cuticular hydrocarbon traits in two phygenetically distinct populations of Drosophila montana. In order to study natural variation in these two important traits, we analysed within-population crosses among individuals sampled from the wild. Hence, the genetic variation analysed should represent that available for natural and sexual selection to act upon. In contrast to previous between-population crosses in this species, no major QTLs were detected, perhaps because the...

Data from: Low but contrasting neutral genetic differentiation shaped by winter temperature in European great tits

Mélissa Lemoine, Kay Lucek, Charles Perrier, Verena Saladin, Frank Adriaensen, Emilio Barba, Eduardo J. Belda, Anne Charmantier, Mariusz Cichon, Eeva Tapio, Arnaud Gregoire, Camilla A. Hinde, Arild Johnsen, Jan Komdeur, Raivo Mand, Erik Matthysen, Ana Claudia Norte, Natalia Pitala, Ben C. Sheldon, Tore Slagsvold, Joost M. Tinbergen, Janos Torok, Richard Ubels, Kees Van Oers, Marcel E. Visser … & Tapio Eeva
Gene flow is usually thought to reduce genetic divergence and impede local adaptation by homogenising gene pools between populations. However, evidence for local adaptation and phenotypic differentiation in highly mobile species, experiencing high levels of gene flow, is emerging. Assessing population genetic structure at different spatial scales is thus a crucial step towards understanding mechanisms underlying intraspecific differentiation and diversification. Here, we studied the population genetic structure of a highly mobile species – the great...

Data from: Linkage mapping of a polymorphic plumage locus associated with intermorph incompatibility in the Gouldian finch (Erythrura gouldiae)

Kang-Wook Kim, Simon C. Griffith & Terry Burke
Colour polymorphism is known to facilitate speciation but the genetic basis of animal pigmentation and how colour polymorphisms contribute to speciation is poorly understood. Restricted recombination may promote linkage disequilibrium between the colour locus and incompatibility genes. Genomic rearrangement and the position of relevant loci within a chromosome are important factors that influence the frequency of recombination. Therefore, it is important to know the position of the colour locus, gene order and recombination landscape of...

Data from: The evolution of novel host use is unlikely to be constrained by tradeoffs or a lack of genetic variation

Zachariah Gompert, Joshua P. Jahner, Cynthia F. Scholl, Joseph S. Wilson, Lauren K. Lucas, Victor Soria-Carrasco, James A. Fordyce, Chris C. Nice, C. Alex Buerkle & Matthew L. Forister
The genetic and ecological factors that shape the evolution of animal diets remain poorly understood. For herbivorous insects, the expectation has been that trade-offs exist, such that adaptation to one host plant reduces performance on other potential hosts. We investigated the genetic architecture of alternative host use by rearing individual Lycaeides melissa butterflies from two wild populations in a crossed design on two hosts (one native and one introduced) and analysing the genetic basis of...

Data from: The evolutionary legacy of size-selective harvesting extends from genes to populations

Silva Uusi-Heikkilä, Andrew R. Whiteley, Anna Kuparinen, Shuichi Matsumura, Paul A. Venturelli, Christian Wolter, Jon Slate, Craig R. Primmer, Thomas Meinelt, Shaun S. Killen, David Bierbach, Giovanni Polverino, Arne Ludwig & Robert Arlinghaus
Size-selective harvesting is assumed to alter life histories of exploited fish populations, thereby negatively affecting population productivity, recovery, and yield. However, demonstrating that fisheries-induced phenotypic changes in the wild are at least partly genetically determined has proved notoriously difficult. Moreover, the population-level consequences of fisheries-induced evolution are still being controversially discussed. Using an experimental approach, we found that five generations of size-selective harvesting altered the life histories and behavior, but not the metabolic rate, of...

Root and leaf phenology of Scandinavian subarctic plant communities, 2008-2009

V.L Sloan, B.J Fletcher & G.K Phoenix
This dataset consists of measurements of leaf and root growth, species abundance and soil temperature made in ten subarctic plant communities located at the Arctic Biosphere Atmosphere Coupling at Multiple Scales (ABACUS) project sites near to Abisko, Sweden, and Kevo, Finland. The data were collected during the summer growing seasons (May to September) in 2008 and 2009, and comprise field survey measurements, temperature logs and values derived from analyses of mini-rhizotron images.

Data from: Polyspermy in birds: sperm numbers and embryo survival

Nicola Hemmings & Tim R. Birkhead
Polyspermy is a major puzzle in reproductive biology. In some taxa, multiple sperm enter the ovum as part of the normal fertilisation process, while in others, penetration of the ovum by more than one sperm is lethal. In birds, several sperm typically enter the germinal disc, yet only one fuses with the female pronucleus. It is unclear whether supernumerary sperm play an essential role in the avian fertilisation process and, if they do, how females...

Data from: Managing Neotropical oil palm expansion to retain phylogenetic diversity

Graham W. Prescott, James J. Gilroy, Torbjørn Haugaasen, Claudia A. Medina Uribe, William A. Foster & David P. Edwards
The expansion of tropical agriculture is a major driver of the extinction crisis. A key question is whether biodiversity losses can be minimized by restricting future expansion to low-productivity farmland and retaining forest fragments, especially in rapidly changing Neotropical landscapes. We investigated these methods in the context of avian phylogenetic diversity, which summarizes the evolutionary history preserved within communities. Evidence suggests that phylogenetic diversity plays an important role in maintaining key ecosystem functions. We collected...

Data from: The evolution of parental cooperation in birds

Vladimír Remeš, Robert P. Freckleton, Jácint Tökölyi, András Liker & Tamás Székely
Parents in many animal species care for their offspring. In some species, males care more; in other species, females care more; in still other species, the contribution of the sexes is equal. However, we do not know what explains these differences among species. Using the most comprehensive analyses of parental care to date, here we show that parents cooperate more when sexual selection is not intense and the adult sex ratio of males to females...

Registration Year

  • 2015

Resource Types

  • Dataset


  • University of Sheffield
  • University of Cambridge
  • University of Oxford
  • University of Auckland
  • University of Exeter
  • Max Planck Institute for Ornithology
  • University of Zurich
  • Uppsala University
  • University of Jyväskylä
  • University of Turku