134 Works

Data from: Genetic structure and rabies spread potential in raccoons: the role of landscape barriers and sex-biased dispersal

Héloïse Côté, Dany Garant, Karine Robert, Julien Mainguy & Fanie Pelletier
Identifying natural barriers to movements of hosts associated with infectious diseases is essential for developing effective control strategies. Raccoon rabies variant (RRV) is a zoonosis of concern for humans because its main vector, the raccoon (Procyon lotor), is found near residential areas. In Québec, Canada, all cases of RRV found in raccoons since 2006 were detected on the eastern side of the Richelieu River, suggesting that this river acts as a barrier to gene flow...

Data from: Resampling method for applying density-dependent habitat selection theory to wildlife surveys

Olivia Tardy, Ariane Massé, Fanie Pelletier & Daniel Fortin
Isodar theory can be used to evaluate fitness consequences of density-dependent habitat selection by animals. A typical habitat isodar is a regression curve plotting competitor densities in two adjacent habitats when individual fitness is equal. Despite the increasing use of habitat isodars, their application remains largely limited to areas composed of pairs of adjacent habitats that are defined a priori. We developed a resampling method that uses data from wildlife surveys to build isodars in...

Data from: Adoption in eastern grey kangaroos: a consequence of misdirected care?

Wendy J. King, David M. Forsyth, Graeme Coulson & Marco Festa-Bianchet
Adoption is rare in animals and is usually attributed to kin selection. In a 6-year study of eastern grey kangaroos (Macropus giganteus), 11 of 326 juveniles were adopted. We detected eight adoptions by observing behavioural associations and nursing between marked mothers and young and three more by analysing the relatedness of mothers and young using microsatellite DNA. Four adoptions involved reciprocal switches and three were by mothers whose own pouch young were known to subsequently...

Data from: Spatial autocorrelation in fitness affects the estimation of natural selection in the wild

Pascal Marrot, Dany Garant & Anne Charmantier
1. Natural selection is typically estimated in the wild using Lande and Arnold's multiple regression approach. Despite its utility for evolutionary ecologists, this method is subject to the classical assumptions of multiple regressions, which could result in potential analytical problems. In particular, spatial autocorrelation in fitness violates the assumption of residuals independence. Although widespread in the wild, the consequences of this effect have yet to be investigated in the context of Lande and Arnold's regression...

Data from: Severe recent decrease of adult body mass in a declining insectivorous bird population

Sébastien Rioux Paquette, Fanie Pelletier, Dany Garant & Marc Bélisle
Migratory bird species that feed on air-borne insects are experiencing widespread regional declines, but these remain poorly understood. Agricultural intensification in the breeding range is often regarded as one of the main drivers of these declines. Here, we tested the hypothesis that body mass in breeding individuals should reflect habitat quality in an aerial insectivore, the tree swallow (Tachycineta bicolor), along a gradient of agricultural intensity. Our dataset was collected over 7 years (2005–2011) and...

Data from: The early spread and epidemic ignition of HIV-1 in human populations

Nuno R. Faria, Andrew Rambaut, Marc A. Suchard, Guy Baele, Trevor Bedford, Melissa J. Ward, Andrew J. Tatem, João D. Sousa, Nimalan Arinaminpathy, Jacques Pépin, David Posada, Martine Peeters, Oliver P. Pybus & Philippe Lemey
Thirty years after the discovery of HIV-1, the early transmission, dissemination and establishment of the virus in human populations remain unclear. Using statistical approaches applied to HIV-1 sequence data from central Africa, we show that from the 1920s Kinshasa was the focus of early transmission and the source of pre-1960 pandemic viruses elsewhere. Location and dating estimates were validated using the earliest HIV-1 archival sample, also from Kinshasa. The epidemic histories of HIV-1 group M...

Data from: Changes in horn size of Stone's sheep over four decades correlate with trophy hunting pressure

Mathieu Douhard, Marco Festa-Bianchet, Fanie Pelletier, Jean-Michel Gaillard & Christophe Bonenfant
Selective harvest may lead to rapid evolutionary change. For large herbivores, trophy hunting removes males with large horns. That artificial selection, operating in opposition to sexual selection, can lead to undesirable consequences for management and conservation. There have been no comparisons of long-term changes in trophy size under contrasting harvest pressures. We analyzed horn measurements of Stone's rams (Ovis dalli stonei) harvested over 37 years in two large regions of British Columbia, Canada, with marked...

Data from: Predicting the genetic impact of stocking in Brook Charr (Salvelinus fontinalis) by combining RAD sequencing and modeling of explanatory variables

Justine Létourneau, Anne-Laure Ferchaud, Jérémy Le Luyer, Martin Laporte, Dany Garant & Louis Bernatchez
In fisheries management, intensive stocking programs are commonly used to enhance population abundance and maintain stock productivity. However, such practices are increasingly raising concerns since multiple studies documented adverse genetic and evolutionary impacts of stocking on wild populations. Improvement of stocking management relies on a better understanding of the dynamic of introgressive hybridization between wild and domestic population and on assessment of the genetic state of wild populations after stocking cessation. In Québec, Canada, over...

Data from: Species traits as drivers of food web structure

Idaline Laigle, Isabelle Aubin, Christoph Digel, Ulrich Brose, Isabelle Boulangeat & Dominique Gravel
The use of functional traits to describe community structure is a promising approach to reveal generalities across organisms and ecosystems. Plant ecologists have demonstrated the importance of traits in explaining community structure, competitive interactions as well as ecosystem functioning. The application of trait-based methods to more complex communities such as food webs is however more challenging owing to the diversity of animal characteristics and of interactions. The objective of this study was to determine how...

Data from: Current spring warming as a driver of selection on reproductive timing in a wild passerine

Pascal Marrot, Anne Charmantier, Jacques Blondel & Dany Garant
1. Evolutionary adaptation as a response to climate change is expected for fitness-related traits affected by climate and exhibiting genetic variance. Although the relationship between warmer spring temperature and earlier timing of reproduction is well documented, quantifications and predictions of the impact of global warming on natural selection acting on phenology in wild populations remain rare. If global warming affects fitness in a similar way across individuals within a population, or if fitness consequences are...

Data from: Seeing is believing? comparing plant-herbivore networks constructed by field co-occurrence and DNA barcoding methods for gaining insights into network structures

Chunchao Zhu, Dominique Gravel & Fangliang He
Plant-herbivore interaction networks provide information about community organization. Two methods are currently used to document pairwise interactions among plants and insect herbivores. One is the traditional method that collects plant-herbivore interaction data by field observation of insect occurrence on host plants. The other is the increasing application of newly developed molecular techniques based on DNA barcodes to the analysis of gut contents. The second method is more appealing because it documents realized interactions. To construct...

Impacts of environmental heterogeneity on natural selection in a wild bird population

Carolyne Houle, Fanie Pelletier, Marc Bélisle & Dany Garant
Natural selection has been studied for several decades, resulting in the computation of thousands of selection estimates. Although the importance of environmental conditions on selection has often been suggested, published estimates rarely take into account the effects of environmental heterogeneity on selection patterns. Here, we estimated linear and non‐linear viability selection gradients on morphological traits of 12 days‐old nestlings in a wild population of tree swallows (Tachycineta bicolor) across a large‐scale heterogeneous study system in...

Data from: Social selection acts on behavior and body mass but does not contribute to the total selection differential in Eastern chipmunks

Francesca Santostefano, Dany Garant, Patrick Bergeron, Pierre-Olivier Montiglio & Denis Réale
Through social interactions, phenotypes of conspecifics can affect an individual’s fitness, resulting in social selection. Social selection is assumed to represent a strong and dynamic evolutionary force that can act with or in opposition to natural selection. Few studies, however, have estimated social selection and its contribution to total selection in the wild. We estimated natural and social selection gradients on exploration, docility, and body mass, and their contribution to selection differentials, in a wild...

Determinants of heart rate in Svalbard reindeer reveal mechanisms of seasonal energy management

L. Monica Trondrud, Gabriel Pigeon, Steve Albon, Walter Arnold, Alina L. Evans, R. Justin Irvine, Elżbieta Król, Erik Ropstad, Audun Stien, Vebjørn Veiberg, John R. Speakman & Leif Egil Loe
Seasonal energetic challenges may constrain an animal’s ability to respond to changing individual and environmental conditions. Here we investigated variation in heart rate, a well-established proxy for metabolic rate, in Svalbard reindeer, a species with strong seasonal changes in foraging and metabolic activity. In 19 adult females we recorded heart rate, subcutaneous temperature and activity using biologgers. Mean heart rate more than doubled from winter to summer. Typical drivers of energy expenditure, such as reproduction...

Fat storage influences fasting endurance more than body size in an ungulate

L. Monica Trondrud, Gabriel Pigeon, Elżbieta Król, Steve Albon, Alina L. Evans, Walter Arnold, Catherine Hambly, R. Justin Irvine, Erik Ropstad, Audun Stien, Vebjørn Veiberg, John R. Speakman & Leif Egil Loe
1. The fasting endurance hypothesis (FEH) predicts strong selection for large body size in mammals living in environments where food supply is interrupted over prolonged periods of time. The Arctic is a highly seasonal and food restricted environment, but contrary to predictions from the FEH, empirical evidence shows that Arctic mammals are often smaller than their temperate conspecifics. Intraspecific studies integrating physiology and behaviour of different-sized individuals, may shed light on this paradox. 2. We...

Dataset for: Assessing pesticides exposure effects on the reproductive performance of a declining aerial insectivore

Fanie Pelletier, Marie-Christine Poisson, Daniel R. Garrett, Audrey Sigouin, Marc Bélisle & Dany Garant
In the context of increasing global environmental changes, it has become progressively important to understand the effects of human activity on wildlife populations. Declines in several avian populations have been observed since the 1970s, especially with respect to many farmland and grassland birds, which also include some aerial insectivores. Changes in farming practices referred to as agricultural intensification coincide with these major avian declines. Among those practices, increased pesticide use is hypothesized to be a...

Insect seed and cone predation reduces reproductive potential of treeline conifers across northern Canada

Lucas Brehaut, Katie Goodwin, Kirsten Reid, Anna Crofts, Ryan Danby, Steven Mamet & Carissa Brown
Aim: Altitudinal and latitudinal treeline ecotones have not consistently responded to climate warming the in direction and/or magnitude as predicted by climate alone, suggesting that non-climatic mechanisms (e.g., biotic interactions) are also mediating treeline range dynamics. Through a collaborative research approach, we assessed environmental conditions associated with insect cone granivory and how this biotic interaction may govern the reproductive potential, and therefore range dynamics, of spruce-dominated treelines across northern Canada. Location: Ten boreal forest treelines,...

Rethinking early intervention rehabilitation services for children with motor difficulties: engaging stakeholders in the conceptualization of telerehabilitation primary care

Karen Hurtubise, Gabrielle Pratte, Caroline Hamel, Irma Clapperton & Chantal Camden
Rehabilitation services for children with mild motor difficulties are limited. Telehealth could be a novel avenue through which to provide these services. With the input of various stakeholder groups, this study aimed to develop a logic model for a new primary care telerehabilitation intervention and to identify influencing implementation factors. A participatory research design was used. A logic model, developed in consultation with five healthcare managers, was discussed with four stakeholder groups. Focus groups were...

Data from: Large herbivores trigger spatiotemporal changes in forest plant diversity

Julien Beguin, Steeve D. Côté & Mark Vellend
Large herbivores can exert top-down control on terrestrial plant communities, but the magnitude, direction, and scale-dependency of their impacts remain equivocal, especially in temperate and boreal forests, where multiple disturbances often interact. Using a unique, long-term and replicated landscape experiment, we assessed the influence of a high density of white-tailed deer (Odocoileus virginianus) on the spatiotemporal dynamics of diversity, composition, and successional trajectories of understorey plant assemblages in recently logged boreal forests. This experiment provided...

Linking genetic, morphological, and behavioural divergence between inland island and mainland deer mice

Joshua Miller, Dany Garant, Charles Perrier, Tristan Juette, Joël Jameson, Denis Réale, Eric Normandeau & Louis Bernatchez
The island syndrome hypothesis (ISH) stipulates that, as a result of local selection pressures and restricted gene flow, individuals from island populations should differ from individuals within mainland populations. Specifically, island populations are predicted to contain individuals that are larger, less aggressive, more sociable, and that invest more in their offspring. To date, tests of the ISH have mainly compared oceanic islands to continental sites, and rarely smaller spatial scales such as inland watersheds. Here,...

Investigating the role of RNA structures in transcriptional pausing using in vitro assays and in silico analyses

Simon Jeanneau, Pierre-Étienne Jacques & Daniel A. Lafontaine
Transcriptional pausing occurs across the bacterial genome but the importance of this mechanism is still poorly understood. Only few pauses were observed during the previous decades, leaving an important gap in understanding transcription mechanisms. Using the well-known Escherichia coli hisL and trpL pause sites as models, we describe here the relation of pause sites with upstream RNA structures suspected to stabilize pausing. We find that the transcription factor NusA influences the pause half-life at leuL,...

Data from: A novel integrative method for measuring body condition in ecological studies based on physiological dysregulation

Emmanuel Milot, Alan A. Cohen, François Vézina, Deborah M. Buehler, Kevin D. Matson, Theunis Piersman & Theunis Piersma
1. The body condition of free-ranging animals affects their response to stress, decisions, ability to fulfil vital needs and, ultimately, fitness. However, this key attribute in ecology remains difficult to assess, and there is a clear need for more integrative measures than the common univariate proxies. 2. We propose a systems biology approach that positions individuals along a gradient from a ‘normal/optimal’ to ‘abnormal/suboptimal’ physiological state based on Mahalanobis distance computed from physiological biomarkers. We...

Data from: Stocking impacts the expression of candidate genes and physiological condition in introgressed brook charr (Salvelinus fontinalis) populations

Fabien C. Lamaze, Dany Garant & Louis Bernatchez
Translocation of plants and animal populations between environments is one of the major forms of anthropogenic perturbation experienced by pristine populations, and consequently, human mediated hybridization by stocking practices between wild and exogenous conspecifics is of increasing concern. In this study, we compared the expression of seven candidate genes involved in multifactorial traits and regulatory pathways for growth as a function of level of introgressive hybridization between wild and domestic brook charr to test the...

Data from: Can phenotypic rescue from harvest refuges buffer wild sheep from selective hunting?

Fanie Pelletier, Marco Festa-Bianchet, Jon T. Jorgenson, Chiarastella Feder & Anne Hubbs
Human harvests can unwittingly drive evolution on morphology and life history, and these selective effects may be detrimental to the management of natural resources. Although theory suggests that harvest refuges, as sources of unselected animals, could buffer the effects of human exploitation on wild populations, few studies have assessed their efficiency. We analyzed records from >7000 trophy bighorn rams (Ovis canadensis) harvested in Alberta, Canada, between 1974 and 2011 to investigate if the movement of...

Data from: Mother-offspring distances reflect sex differences in fine-scale genetic structure of eastern grey kangaroos

Wendy J. King, Dany Garant & Marco Festa-Bianchet
Natal dispersal affects life history and population biology and causes gene flow. In mammals, dispersal is usually male-biased so that females tend to be philopatric and surrounded by matrilineal kin, which may lead to preferential associations among female kin. Here we combine genetic analyses and behavioral observations to investigate spatial genetic structure and sex-biased dispersal patterns in a high-density population of mammals showing fission–fusion group dynamics. We studied eastern grey kangaroos (Macropus giganteus) over 2...

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