58 Works

Groping in the fog: Soaring migrants exhibit wider scatter in flight directions and respond differently to wind under low visibility conditions

Paolo Becciu, Michele Panuccio, Giacomo Dell'Omo & Nir Sapir
Atmospheric conditions are known to affect flight propensity, behaviour during flight, and migration route in birds. Yet, the effects of fog have only rarely been studied although they could disrupt orientation and hamper flight. Fog could limit the visibility of migrating birds such that they might not be able to detect landmarks that guide them during their journey. Soaring migrants modulate their flight speed and direction in relation to the wind vector to optimise the...

Data from: Genetic restoration in the eastern collared lizard under prescribed woodland burning

Jennifer L. Neuwald & Alan R. Templeton
Eastern collared lizards of the Ozarks live in glades—open, rocky habitats embedded in a woodland matrix. Past fire suppression had made the woodlands a barrier to dispersal, leading to habitat destruction, fragmentation and local extinction. Reintroduced populations of lizards were subjected to 10 years of habitat fragmentation under continued fire suppression followed by twelve years of landscape restoration with prescribed burns. Prior to prescribed burning, genetic diversity decreased within glades and differentiation increased among glades....

Data from: Legume abundance along successional and rainfall gradients in neotropical forests

Maga Gei, Danaë M. A. Rozendaal, Lourens Poorter, Frans Bongers, Janet I. Sprent, Mira D. Garner, T. Mitchell Aide, José Luis Andrade, Patricia Balvanera, Justin M. Becknell, Pedro H.S. Brancalion, George A. L. Cabral, Ricardo Gomes César, Robin L. Chazdon, Rebecca J. Cole, Gabriel Dalla Colletta, Ben De Jong, Julie S. Denslow, Daisy H. Dent, Saara J. DeWalt, Juan Manuel Dupuy, Sandra M. Durán, Mário Marcos Do Espírito Santo, G. Wilson Fernandes, Yule Roberta Ferreira Nunes … & Jennifer S. Powers
The nutrient demands of regrowing tropical forests are partly satisfied by nitrogen (N)-fixing legume trees, but our understanding of the abundance of those species is biased towards wet tropical regions. Here we show how the abundance of Leguminosae is affected by both recovery from disturbance and large-scale rainfall gradients through a synthesis of forest-inventory plots from a network of 42 Neotropical forest chronosequences. During the first three decades of natural forest regeneration, legume basal area...

Data from: Triplet MaxCut: a new toolkit for rooted supertree

Gur Sevillya, Zeev Frenkel & Sagi Snir
The rapid increase of molecular, as well as other types, of available classification data has created the need to combine this data into a unified hypothesis. Supertree methods are essential when amalgamating phylogenetic information from various, possibly conflicting, sources into a single tree. The goal of a supertree algorithm is to satisfy maximally each such source of information in the output tree. Triplets, rooted trees over three leaves, are the minimal piece of such information...

Data from: Invasiveness, chimerism and genetic diversity

Rachel Ben-Shlomo
Adaptation for invasiveness should comprise the capability to exploit and prosper in a wide range of ecological conditions, and is therefore expected to be associated with a certain level of genetic diversity. Paradoxically, however, invasive populations are established by only a few founders, resulting in low genetic diversity. As a conceivable way of attaining high genetic diversity and high variance of gene expression even when a small number of founders is involved in invasiveness, I...

Data from: miR-9a modulates maintenance and ageing of Drosophila germline stem cells by limiting N-cadherin expression

Yehonatan Epstein, Noam Perry, Marina Volin, Maayan Zohar-Fux, Rachel Braun, Lilach Porat-Kuperstein & Hila Toledano
Ageing is characterized by a decline in stem cell functionality leading to dampened tissue regeneration. While the expression of microRNAs across multiple species is markedly altered with age, the mechanism by which they govern stem cell-sustained tissue regeneration is unknown. We report that in the Drosophila testis, the conserved miR-9a is expressed in germline stem cells and its levels are significantly elevated during ageing. Transcriptome and functional analyses show that miR-9a directly regulates the expression...

Data from: Spatiotemporal dynamics and genome-wide association analysis of desiccation tolerance in Drosophila melanogaster

Subhash Rajpurohit, Eran Gefen, Alan O. Bergland, Dmitri A. Petrov, Allen G. Gibbs & Paul S. Schmidt
Water availability is a major environmental challenge to a variety of terrestrial organisms. In insects, desiccation tolerance varies predictably over spatial and temporal scales and is an important physiological determinant of fitness in natural populations. Here, we examine the dynamics of desiccation tolerance in North American populations of Drosophila melanogaster using: 1) natural populations sampled across latitudes and seasons; 2) experimental evolution in field mesocosms over seasonal time; 3) genome-wide associations to identify SNPs/genes associated...

Data from: Factors related to building loss due to wildfires in the conterminous United States

Patricia M. Alexandre, Susan I. Stewart, Nicholas S. Keuler, Murray K. Clayton, Miranda H. Mockrin, Avi Bar-Massada, Alexandra D. Syphard & Volker C. Radeloff
Wildfire is globally an important ecological disturbance affecting biochemical cycles, and vegetation composition, but also puts people and their homes at risk. Suppressing wildfires has detrimental ecological effects and can promote larger and more intense wildfires when fuels accumulate, which increases the threat to buildings in the Wildland Urban Interface (WUI). Yet, when wildfires occur, typically only a small proportion of the buildings within the fire perimeter are lost, and the question is what determines...

Seasonal niche tracking of climate emerges at the population level in a migratory bird

Guillermo Fandos, Shay Rotics, Nir Sapir, Wolfgang Fiedler, Michael Kaatz, Martin Wikelski, Ran Nathan & Damaris Zurell
Seasonal animal migration is a widespread phenomenon. At the species level, it has been shown that many migratory animal species track similar climatic conditions throughout the year. However, it remains unclear whether such niche tracking pattern is a direct consequence of individual behaviour or emerges at the population or species level through behavioural variability. Here, we estimated seasonal niche overlap and seasonal niche tracking at the individual and population level of Central European White Storks...

Data from: Hovering hummingbird wing aerodynamics during the annual cycle

Yonathan Achache, Nir Sapir & Yossef Elimelech
The diverse hummingbird family (Trochilidae) has unique adaptations for nectarivory, among which is the ability to sustain hover-feeding. As hummingbirds mainly feed while hovering, it is crucial to maintain this ability throughout the annual cycle—especially during flight-feather moult, in which wing area is reduced. To quantify the aerodynamic characteristics and flow mechanisms of a hummingbird wing throughout the annual cycle, time-accurate aerodynamic loads and flow field measurements were correlated over a dynamically scaled wing model...

Data from: Partial genomic survival of cave bears in living brown bears

Axel Barlow, James A. Cahill, Stefanie Hartmann, Christoph Theunert, Georgios Xenikoudakis, Gloria G. Fortes, Johanna L. A. Paijmans, Gernot Rabeder, Christine Frischauf, Aurora Grandal-D'Anglade, Ana García-Vázquez, Marine Murtskhvaladze, Urmas Saarma, Peeter Anijalg, Tomaž Skrbinšek, Giorgio Bertorelle, Boris Gasparian, Guy Bar-Oz, Ron Pinhasi, Montgomery Slatkin, Love Dalén, Beth Shapiro & Michael Hofreiter
Although many large mammal species went extinct at the end of the Pleistocene epoch, their DNA may persist due to past episodes of interspecies admixture. However, direct empirical evidence of the persistence of ancient alleles remains scarce. Here, we present multifold coverage genomic data from four Late Pleistocene cave bears (Ursus spelaeus complex) and show that cave bears hybridized with brown bears (Ursus arctos) during the Pleistocene. We develop an approach to assess both the...

Data from: Acclimatization of symbiotic corals to mesophotic light environments through wavelength transformation by fluorescent protein pigments

Edward G. Smith, Cecilia D'Angelo, Yoni Sharon, Dan Tchernov & Joerg Wiedenmann
The depth distribution of reef-building corals exposes their photosynthetic symbionts of the genus Symbiodinium to extreme gradients in the intensity and spectral quality of the ambient light environment. Characterizing the mechanisms used by the coral holobiont to respond to the low intensity and reduced spectral composition of the light environment in deeper reefs (greater than 20 m) is fundamental to our understanding of the functioning and structure of reefs across depth gradients. Here, we demonstrate...

Data from: Fruit consumption in migratory passerines is limited by water ingestion rather than by body water balance

Adi Domer, Eyal Shochat, Ofer Ovadia & Nir Sapir
Many insectivorous passerines become frugivorous during migration. Because water may facilitate the digestion of dry fruits, some passerines may benefit from staging in stopover sites that offer access to drinking water. In autumn, water consumption by Blackcaps (Sylvia atricapilla) staging in Israel was found to induce a shift from insectivory to frugivory. We tested two alternative hypotheses concerning the mechanism facilitating consumption of the relatively dry fruits which are common in this region: (1) Water...

Data from: Large birds travel farther in homogeneous environments

Marlee A. Tucker, Olga Alexandrou, , Keith L. Bildstein, Katrin Böhning-Gaese, Chloe Bracis, John N. Brzorad, Evan R. Buechley, David Cabot, Justin M. Calabrese, Carlos Carrapato, André Chiaradia, Lisa C. Davenport, Sarah C. Davidson, Mark Desholm, Christopher R. DeSorbo, Robert Domenech, Peter Enggist, William F. Fagan, Nina Farwig, Wolfgang Fiedler, Christen H. Fleming, Alastair Franke, John M. Fryxell, Clara García-Ripollés … & João Paulo Silva
Aim: Animal movement is an important determinant of individual survival, population dynamics, and ecosystem structure and function. Yet it is still unclear how local movements are related to resource availability and the spatial arrangement of resources. Using resident bird species and migratory bird species outside of the migratory period, we examined how the distribution of resources affect the movement patterns of both large terrestrial birds (e.g., raptors, bustards, hornbills) and waterbirds (e.g., cranes, storks, ducks,...

Data from: An experimental evolution study confirms that discontinuous gas exchange does not contribute to body water conservation in locusts

Stav Talal, Amir Ayali & Eran Gefen
The adaptive nature of discontinuous gas exchange (DGE) in insects is contentious. The classic “hygric hypothesis”, which posits that DGE serves to reduce respiratory water loss (RWL), is still the best supported. We thus focused on the hygric hypothesis in this first ever experimental evolution study of any of the competing adaptive hypotheses. We compared populations of the migratory locust (Locusta migratoria) that underwent ten consecutive generations of selection for desiccation-resistance with control populations. Selected...

Data from: Genetic variation in bitter taste receptor genes influences the foraging behavior of plateau zokor (Eospalax baileyi)

Fang Zhao, Tongzuo Zhang, Jiuxiang Xie, Shoudong Zhang, Eviatar Nevo, Jianping Su & Gonghua Lin
The ability to detect bitter tastes is important for animals; it can help them to avoid ingesting harmful substances. Bitter taste perception is mainly mediated by bitter taste receptor proteins, which are encoded by members of the Tas2r gene family and vary with the dietary preference of a specific species. Although individuals with different genotypes differ in bitterness recognition capability, little is known about the relationship between genetic variation and food selection tendencies at the...

Atmospheric and soil drought risks combined shape community assembly of trees in a Tropical Dry Forest

Moises Méndez-Toribio, Guillermo Ibarra-Manríquez, Horacio Paz & Edwin Lebrija-Trejos
1. Predicting plant community assembly is challenging in part because the influence of environmental conditions via plant functional strategies and the relevance of mechanisms of community assembly change across habitats and these changes remain poorly studied. 2. To assess how environmental conditions drive species sorting in a tropical dry forest, we used the combined RLQ and Fourth-Corner methods to analyze changes in tree species assemblages among sites with distinct atmospheric and soil drought risks. We...

Benthos Dataset; segmented photomosaics from three oceanic environments

Matan Yuval, Iñigo Alonso, Ana C. Murillo & Tali Treibitz
Reefs constitute some of the richest and most diverse environments on the planet, manifesting in complex biogenic 3D structures. As such, they are intensively studied. In benthic images, full segmentation (where every pixel is classified) is difficult and labour-intensive to achieve using human-based manual labeling. To solve that, we utilize label-augmentation, i.e., propagation of sparse manual labels to accelerate this task and achieve full map segmentation. The Benthos dataset contains fully labeled photomosaics from three...

The interplay of wind and uplift facilitates over-water flight in facultative soaring birds

Elham Nourani, Gil Bohrer, Paolo Becciu, Richard O Bierregaard, Olivier Duriez, Jordi Figuerola, Laura Gangoso, Sinos Giokas, Hiroyoshi Higuchi, Christina Kassara, Olga Kulikova, Nicolas Lecomte, Flavio Monti, Ivan Pokrovsky, Andrea Sforzi, Jean-François Therrien, Nikos Tsiopelas, Wouter MG Vansteelant, Duarte S Viana, Noriyuki M Yamaguchi, Martin Wikelski & Kamran Safi
Flying over the open sea is energetically costly for terrestrial birds. Despite this, over-water journeys of many birds, sometimes hundreds of kilometers long, are uncovered by bio-logging technology. To understand how these birds afford their flights over the open sea, we investigated the role of atmospheric conditions, specifically wind and uplift, in subsidizing over-water flight at the global scale. We first established that ∆T, the temperature difference between sea surface and air, is a meaningful...

Data from: Fine-scale substrate heterogeneity in green roof plant communities: the constraint of size

Amiel Vasl, Bracha Schindler, Gyongyver Kadas & Leon Blaustein
Heterogeneity-diversity relationship (HDR) is commonly shown to be positive in accordance with classic niche processes. However, recent soil-based studies have often found neutral and even negative HDRs. Some of the suggested reasons for this discrepancy include the lack of resemblance between manipulated substrate and natural settings, the treated areas not being large enough to contain species' root span and finally limited-sized plots may not sustain focal species’ populations over time. V egetated green roofs are...

Data from: Sustained high levels of neuregulin-1 in the longest-lived rodents; a key determinant of rodent longevity

Yael H. Edrey, Diana Casper, Dorothee Huchon, James Mele, Jonathan A. Gelfond, Deborah M. Kristan, Eviatar Nevo & Rochelle Buffenstein
Naked mole-rats (Heterocephalus glaber), the longest-lived rodents, live 7-10 times longer than similarly–sized mice and exhibit normal activities for ∼75% of their lives. Little is known about the mechanisms that allow them to delay the aging process and live so long. Neuregulin-1 (NRG-1) signaling is critical for normal brain function during both development and adulthood. We hypothesized that long-lived species will maintain higher levels of NRG-1 and that this contributes to their sustained brain function...

Data from: Temporal migration pattern and mating tactics influence size-assortative mating in Rana temporaria

Carolin Dittrich, Ariel Rodríguez, Ori Segev, Sanja Drakulić, Heike Feldhaar, Miguel Vences & Mark-Oliver Rödel
Assortative mating is a common pattern in sexually reproducing species, but the mechanisms leading to assortment remain poorly understood. By using the European common frog (Rana temporaria) as a model, we aim to understand the mechanisms leading to size-assortative mating in amphibians. With data from natural populations collected over several years, we first show a consistent pattern of size-assortative mating across our two study populations. We subsequently ask if assortative mating may be explained by...

Data from: Moving in the Anthropocene: global reductions in terrestrial mammalian movements

Marlee A. Tucker, Katrin Böhning-Gaese, William F. Fagan, John M. Fryxell, Bram Van Moorter, Susan C. Alberts, Abdullahi H. Ali, Andrew M. Allen, Nina Attias, Tal Avgar, Hattie Bartlam-Brooks, Buuveibaatar Bayarbaatar, Jerrold L. Belant, Alessandra Bertassoni, Dean Beyer, Laura Bidner, Floris M. Van Beest, Stephen Blake, Niels Blaum, Chloe Bracis, Danielle Brown, P. J. Nico De Bruyn, Francesca Cagnacci, Justin M. Calabrese, Constança Camilo-Alves … & Thomas Mueller
Animal movement is fundamental for ecosystem functioning and species survival, yet the effects of the anthropogenic footprint on animal movements have not been estimated across species. Using a unique GPS-tracking database of 803 individuals across 57 species, we found that movements of mammals in areas with a comparatively high human footprint were on average one-half to one-third the extent of their movements in areas with a low human footprint. We attribute this reduction to behavioral...

Data from: Towards automated annotation of benthic survey images: variability of human experts and operational modes of automation

Oscar Beijbom, Peter J. Edmunds, Chris Roelfsema, Jennifer Smith, David I. Kline, Benjamin Neal, Matthew J. Dunlap, Vincent Moriarty, Tung-Yung Fan, Chih-Jui Tan, Stephen Chan, Tali Treibitz, Anthony Gamst, B. Greg Mitchell, David Kriegman & Benjamin P. Neal
Global climate change and other anthropogenic stressors have heightened the need to rapidly characterize ecological changes in marine benthic communities across large scales. Digital photography enables rapid collection of survey images to meet this need, but the subsequent image annotation is typically a time consuming, manual task. We investigated the feasibility of using automated point-annotation to expedite cover estimation of the 17 dominant benthic categories from survey-images captured at four Pacific coral reefs. Inter- and...

Data from: RNA-Seq analysis identifies genes associated with differential reproductive success under drought-stress in accessions of wild barley Hordeum spontaneum

Sariel Hübner, Abraham B. Korol & Karl J. Schmid
Background: The evolutionary basis of reproductive success in different environments is of major interest in the study of plant adaptation. Since the reproductive stage is particularly sensitive to drought, genes affecting reproductive success during this stage are key players in the evolution of adaptive mechanisms. We used an ecological genomics approach to investigate the reproductive response of drought-tolerant and sensitive wild barley accessions originating from different habitats in the Levant. Results: We sequenced mRNA extracted...

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