8 Works

Data from: Island-wide aridity did not trigger recent megafaunal extinctions in Madagascar

Brooke E. Crowley, Laurie R. Godfrey, Richard J. Bankoff, George H. Perry, Brendan J. Culleton, Douglas J. Kennett, Michael R. Sutherland, Karen E. Samonds & David A. Burney
Researchers are divided about the relative importance of people versus climate in triggering the Late Holocene extinctions of the endemic large-bodied fauna on the island of Madagascar. Specifically, a dramatic and synchronous decline in arboreal pollen and increase in grass pollen ca. 1,000 years ago has been alternatively interpreted as evidence for aridification, increased human activity, or both. As aridification and anthropogenic deforestation can have similar effects on vegetation, resolving which of these factors (if...

Data from: Defining the risk landscape in the context of pathogen pollution: Toxoplasma gondii in sea otters along the Pacific Rim

Tristan L. Burgess, M. Tim Tinker, Melissa A. Miller, James L. Bodkin, Michael J. Murray, Justin A. Saarinen, Linda M. Nichol, Shawn Larson, Patricia A. Conrad & Christine K. Johnson
Pathogens entering the marine environment as pollutants exhibit a spatial signature driven by their transport mechanisms. The sea otter (Enhydra lutris), a marine animal that lives much of its life within sight of land, presents a unique opportunity to understand land-sea pathogen transmission. Using a dataset on Toxoplasma gondii prevalence across sea otter range from Alaska to California, we found that the dominant drivers of infection risk vary depending upon the spatial scale of analysis....

Data from: Extensive sampling of polar bears (Ursus maritimus) in the Northwest Passage (Canadian Arctic Archipelago) reveals population differentiation across multiple spatial and temporal scales

Leonardo Campagna, Peter J. Van Coeverden De Groot, Brenda L. Saunders, Stephen N. Atkinson, Diana S. Weber, Markus G. Dyck, Peter T. Boag & Stephen C. Lougheed
As global warming accelerates the melting of Arctic sea ice, polar bears (Ursus maritimus) must adapt to a rapidly changing landscape. This process will necessarily alter the species distribution together with population dynamics and structure. Detailed knowledge of these changes is crucial to delineating conservation priorities. Here, we sampled 361 polar bears from across the center of the Canadian Arctic Archipelago spanning the Gulf of Boothia (GB) and M'Clintock Channel (MC). We use DNA microsatellites...

A global analysis of viviparity in squamates highlights its prevalence in cold climates

Anna Zimin, Sean Zimin, Richard Shine, Luciano Avila, Aaron Bauer, Monika Böhm, Rafe Brown, Goni Barki, Gabriel Henrique De Oliveira Caetano, Fernando-Castro Herrera, David Chapple, Laurent Chirio, Guarino Colli, Tiffany Doan, Frank Glaw, L. Lee Grismer, Yuval Itescu, Fred Kraus, Matthew LeBreton, Marcio Martins, Mariana Morado, Gopal Murali, Zoltán Nagy, Maria Novosolov, Paul Oliver … & Shai Meiri
Aim: Viviparity has evolved more times in squamates than in any other vertebrate group. Therefore, squamates offer an excellent model system to study the patterns, drivers, and implications of reproductive mode evolution. Based on current species distributions we examined three selective forces hypothesized to drive squamate viviparity evolution: (1) cold climate, (2) variable climate, and (3) hypoxic conditions, and tested whether viviparity is associated with larger body size. Location: Global. Time period: present day. Taxon:...

Data from: Urbanized landscapes favored by fig-eating birds increase invasive but not native juvenile strangler fig abundance

Trevor Caughlin, Jessica H. Wheeler, Jill Jankowski & Jeremy W. Lichstein
Propagule pressure can determine the success or failure of invasive plant range expansion. Range expansion takes place at large spatial scales, often encompassing many types of land cover, yet the effect of landscape context on propagule pressure remains largely unknown. Many studies have reported a positive correlation between invasive plant abundance and human land use; increased propagule pressure in these landscapes may be responsible for this correlation. We tested the hypothesis that increased rates of...

Data from: The global diversity and distribution of lizard clutch sizes

Shai Meiri, Luciano Avila, Aaron Bauer, David Chapple, Indraneil Das, Tiffany Doan, Paul Doughty, Ryan Ellis, Lee Grismer, Fred Kraus, Mariana Morando, Paul Oliver, Daniel Pincheira-Donoso, Marco-Antonio Ribeiro-Junior, Glenn Shea, Omar Torres-Carvajal, Alex Slavenko & Uri Roll
Aim. Clutch size is a key life-history trait. In lizards, it ranges over two orders of magnitude. The global drivers of spatial and phylogenetic variation in clutch have been extensively studied in birds, but such tests in other organisms are lacking. To test the generality of latitudinal gradients in clutch size, and their putative drivers, we present the first global-scale analysis of clutch sizes across of lizard taxa. Location, Global Time period. Recent Major taxa...

Data from: A novel degree of sex difference in laryngeal physiology of Xenopus muelleri: behavioral and evolutionary implications

Kelly South, Bernhard Klingenberg & Elizabeth Leininger
Characterizing sex and species differences in muscle physiology can contribute to a better understanding of proximate mechanisms underlying behavioral evolution. In Xenopus, the laryngeal muscle’s ability to contract rapidly and its electromyogram potentiation allows males to produce calls that are more rapid and intensity-modulated than female calls. Prior comparative studies have shown that some species lacking typical male features of vocalizations sometimes show reduced sex differences in underlying laryngeal physiology. To further understand the evolution...

Data from: Climate change is associated with increased allocation to potential outcrossing in a common mixed mating species

Matthew Austin, Piper Cole, Kenneth Olsen & Adam Smith
Premise: The balance between cross- and self-fertilization is driven by the environment. Yet no long-term study has documented whether anthropogenic climate change is affecting reproductive strategy allocation in species with mixed mating systems. Here, we test whether the common blue violet (Viola sororia; Violaceae) has altered relative allocation to the production of potentially outcrossing flowers as the climate has changed across the 20th century. Methods: Using herbarium records spanning 1875 to 2015 from the central...

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