43 Works

Data from: EDAPHOLOG monitoring system: automatic, real-time detection of soil microarthropods

Miklós Dombos, Oxána Bánszegi, Katalin Szlávecz & Andrés Kosztolányi
Soil microarthropods as organic matter decomposers play an important role in soil functioning thus providing ecosystem services. However, ecosystem scale investigations on their abundance and dynamics are scarce because their high spatio-temporal heterogeneity requires huge sample size. Processing and identifying large number of individuals are extremely labour-intensive. We prototyped a device called EDAPHOLOG monitoring system that consists of (1) a probe that catches and detects microarthropods and estimates their body size; (2) a data logger...

Data from: Endozoochory of aquatic ferns and angiosperms by mallards in Central Europe

Adam Lovas-Kiss, Balázs Vizi, Orsolya Vincze, Attila Molnár V. & Andy J. Green
1. Modern literature on plant dispersal by birds focuses mainly on the importance of frugivory and scatter-hoarding, yet recent studies show that endozoochory by migratory waterbirds is an important mechanism of long-distance dispersal for a broad range of plants. Nevertheless, there is a lack of empirical field studies that identify the plants dispersed by waterbirds, and relate them to expectations based on dispersal syndromes. To date, there are no detailed studies of the level of...

Data from: Why do zoos attract crows? A comparative study from Europe and Asia

László Kövér, Szabolcs Lengyel, Makiko Takenaka, Alice Kirchmeir, Florian Uhl, Rachel Miller & Christine Schwab
Crows have successfully colonized many cities and urban zoos have been important in this process. To evaluate why zoos attract crows, we quantified crow numbers and behaviour in three zoos in Europe (Debrecen, Edinburgh, Vienna) and one in Asia (Sapporo). Data were collected in 445 surveys over 297 days in summer 2014 and winter 2014-15. We found that crow numbers were highest in Vienna, intermediate in Debrecen and Edinburgh and lowest in Sapporo, increased significantly...

Exceptionally high apparent adult survival in three tropical species of plovers in Madagascar

William Jones, Luke Eberhart-Hertel, Robert Freckleton, Joseph Hoffmann, Oliver Krüger, Brett Sandercock, Orsolya Vincze, Sama Zefania & Tamás Székely
Adult survival is a key component of population dynamics and understanding variation in and the drivers of adult survival rates and longevity is critical for ecological and evolutionary studies, as well as for conservation biology and practice. Tropical species of landbirds are often selected to have higher adult survival due to high nest predation rates, but it is unclear if the same patterns occur in other avian lineages with different life history strategies. Here, we...

Data from: Do large-seeded herbs have a small range size? The seed mass-distribution range trade-off hypothesis

Judit Sonkoly, Balázs Deák, Orsolya Valkó, Attila Molnár V., Béla Tóthmérész & Péter Török
We aimed to introduce and test the “seed mass–distribution range trade-off” hypothesis, that is, that range size is negatively related to seed mass due to the generally better dispersal ability of smaller seeds. Studying the effects of environmental factors on the seed mass and range size of species, we also aimed to identify habitats where species may be at risk and need extra conservation effort to avoid local extinctions. We collected data for seed mass,...

Data from: Persistence of an extreme male-biased adult sex ratio in a natural population of polyandrous bird

András Kosztolányi, Zoltan Barta, Clemens Küpper & Tamás Székely
In a number of insects, fishes and birds the conventional sex roles are reversed: males are the main care provider whereas females focus on matings. The reversal of typical sex roles is an evolutionary puzzle, because it challenges the foundations of sex roles, sexual selection and parental investment theory. Recent theoretical models predict that biased parental care may be a response to biased adult sex ratios (ASRs). However, estimating ASR is challenging in natural populations,...

Data from: Brain regions associated with visual cues are important for bird migration

Orsolya Vincze, Csongor I. Vágási, Péter L. Pap, Gergely Osváth & Anders Pape Møller
Long-distance migratory birds have relatively smaller brains than short-distance migrants or residents. Here, we test whether reduction in brain size with migration distance can be generalized across the different brain regions suggested to play key roles in orientation during migration. Based on 152 bird species, belonging to 61 avian families from six continents, we show that the sizes of both the telencephalon and the whole brain decrease, and the relative size of the optic lobe...

Data from: Light enough to travel or wise enough to stay? Brain size evolution and migratory behaviour in birds

Orsolya Vincze
Brain size relative to body size is smaller in migratory than in non-migratory birds. Two mutually non-exclusive hypotheses had been proposed to explain this association. On the one hand, the ‘energetic trade-off hypothesis’ claims that migratory species were selected to have smaller brains because of the interplay between neural tissue volume and migratory flight. In contrast, the ‘behavioural flexibility hypothesis’ argues that resident species are selected to have higher cognitive capacities, and therefore larger brains,...

Data from: Parental care and the evolution of terrestriality in frogs

Balázs Vági, Zsolt Végvári, András Liker, Robert P. Freckleton & Tamás Székely
Frogs and toads (Anura) exhibit some of the most diverse parental strategies in vertebrates. Identifying the evolutionary origins of parenting is fundamental to understanding the relationships between sexual selection, social evolution and parental care systems of contemporary Anura. Moreover, parenting has been hypothesized to allow the invasion of terrestrial habitats by the ancestors of terrestrial vertebrates. Using comprehensive phylogenetic analyses of frogs and toads based on data from over 1000 species that represent 46 out...

Data from: Global pattern of nest predation is disrupted by climate change in shorebirds

Vojtěch Kubelka, Miroslav Šálek, Pavel Tomkovich, Zsolt Végvári, Robert P. Freckleton & Tamás Székely
Ongoing climate change is thought to disrupt trophic relationships, with consequences for complex interspecific interactions, yet the effects of climate change on species interactions are poorly understood, and such effects have not been documented at a global scale. Using a single database of 38,191 nests from 237 populations, we found that shorebirds have experienced a worldwide increase in nest predation over the past 70 years. Historically, there existed a latitudinal gradient in nest predation, with...

Patterns of pollination interactions at community-level are related to the type and quantity of floral resources

Péter Török, Edy Fantinato, Judit Sonkoly, Péter Török & Gabriella Buffa
1. A fundamental question in community ecology is how the quantity of floral resources affects pollinator activity and how this relates to the structure and robustness of pollination networks. The issue has been mainly addressed at species level, while at community level several questions are still open. 2. Using a species-rich semi-natural grassland as model ecosystem, we explored the relationship between community-level quantity of floral resources, the number of flower visits at community-level and descriptors...

Data from: Higher seed number compensates for lower fruit set in deceptive orchids

Judit Sonkoly, Anna E. Vojtkó, Jácint Tökölyi, Péter Török, Gábor Sramkó, Zoltán Illyés & Attila V. Molnár
1. Floral deception is widespread in orchids, with more than one third of the species being pollinated this way. The evolutionary success of deceptive orchids is puzzling, as species employing this strategy are thought to have low reproductive success (less flowers yielding fruits) because of low pollination rates. However, direct measurements of total seed production in orchids – which is a better measure of reproductive success – are scarce due to the extremely small size...

Data from: Integrating restriction site-associated DNA sequencing (RAD-seq) with morphological cladistic analysis clarifies evolutionary relationships among major species groups of bee orchids

Richard M. Bateman, Gábor Sramkó & Ovidiu Paun
Background and Aims. Bee orchids (Ophrys) have become the most popular model system for studying reproduction via insect-mediated pseudo-copulation and for exploring the consequent, putatively adaptive, evolutionary radiations. However, despite intensive past research, both the phylogenetic structure and species diversity within the genus remain highly contentious. Here, we integrate next-generation sequencing and morphological cladistics techniques to clarify the phylogeny of the genus. Methods. At least two accessions of each of the ten species groups previously...

Data from: Interspecific variation in the structural properties of flight feathers in birds indicates adaptation to flight requirements and habitat

Peter L. Pap, Gergely Osvath, Krisztina Sandor, Orsolya Vincze, Lorinc Barbos, Attila Marton, Robert L. Nudds & Csongor I. Vagasi
1. The functional significance of intra- and interspecific structural variations in the flight feathers of birds is poorly understood. Here, a phylogenetic comparative analysis of four structural features (rachis width, barb and barbule density and porosity) of proximal and distal primary feathers of 137 European bird species was conducted. 2. Flight type (flapping and soaring, flapping and gliding, continuous flapping or passerine type), habitat (terrestrial, riparian or aquatic), wing characteristics (wing area, S and aspect...

Data from: Cohabitation with farm animals rather than breeding effort increases the infection with feather-associated bacteria in the barn swallow Hirundo rustica

Attila Fülöp, I. Csongor Vágási & Péter László Pap
Feather-associated bacteria are widespread inhabitants of avian plumage. However, the determinants of the between-individual variation in plumage bacterial loads are less well understood. Infection intensities can be determined by ecological factors, such as breeding habitat, and can be actively regulated by hosts via preening. Preening, yet, is a resource intensive activity, and thus might be traded-off against reproductive investment in breeding birds. Here, we studied barn swallows Hirundo rustica to assess the bacterial cost of...

Data from: Functional diversity supports the biomass-diversity humped-back relationship in phytoplankton assemblages

Péter Török, Enikő T-Krasznai, Viktória B-Béres, István Bácsi, Gábor Borics & Béla Tóthmérész
Modelling the relationship between biomass and diversity in phytoplankton assemblages provides new insights into the mechanisms responsible for the coexistence of species, even in terrestrial ecosystems. We tested the biomass–diversity relationship in lake phytoplankton along a wide biomass gradient using functional species groups. We hypothesized that changes in the taxonomic diversity of the phytoplankton along a biomass gradient are associated with altered functional diversity. For the analyses, in total 768 samples were collected from 30...

Data from: Rainy springs linked to poor nestling growth in a declining avian aerial insectivore (Tachycineta bicolor)

Amelia R. Cox, Raleigh J. Robertson, Ádám Z. Lendvai, Kennedy Everitt & Frances Bonier
As species shift their ranges and phenology to cope with climate change, many are left without a ready supply of their preferred food source during critical life stages. Food shortages are often assumed to be driven by reduced total food abundance, but here we propose that climate change may cause short-term food shortages for foraging specialists without affecting overall food availability. We frame this hypothesis around the special case of birds that forage on flying...

Avian plumage and eggshell colouration covary with sex-specific contributions to nest building

Jenő Nagy, Mark E. Hauber & Mark C. Mainwaring
Interspecific variation in sex-specific contributions to nest building remain poorly understood. We examine whether the colouration of parents and of eggs influences sex-specific nest building contributions in 521 species of Western Palearctic birds. Having colourful plumage and laying colourful eggs are costly because of the deposition of pigments (in feathers and eggs) and/or forming costly nanostructural substrates (of feathers). We tested the hypotheses that species in which females alone build nests (i) exhibit sexual plumage...

Social groups with diverse personalities mitigate physiological stress in a songbird

Csongor I. Vágási, Attila Fülöp, Gergely Osváth, Péter Pap, Janka Pénzes, Zoltán Benkő, Ádám Lendvai & Zoltán Barta
Social groups often consist of diverse phenotypes, including personality types, and this diversity is known to affect the functioning of the group as a whole. Social selection theory proposes that group composition (i.e. social environment) also influences the performance of individual group members. However, the effect of group behavioural composition on group members remains largely unexplored, and it is still contentious whether individuals benefit more in a social environment with homogeneous or diverse behavioural composition....

Data from: Personality and social foraging tactic use in free-living Eurasian tree sparrows (Passer montanus)

Attila Fulop, Zoltan Nemeth, Bianka Kocsis, Bettina Deak-Molnar, Timea Bozsoky & Zoltan Barta
Group-foraging individuals often use alternative behavioral tactics to acquire food: some individuals, the producers, actively search for food, while others, the scroungers, look for opportunities to exploit the finders’ discoveries. Although the use of social foraging tactics is partly flexible, yet some individuals tend mainly to produce, while others largely prefer to scrounge. This between-individual variation in tactic use closely resembles the phenomenon of animal personality, however the connection between personality and social foraging tactic...

Data from: Roadside verges and cemeteries: comparative analysis of synanthropic orchid habitats in the Mediterranean Archipelago

Réka Fekete, Viktor Löki, Renáta Urgyán, Kristóf Süveges, Ádám Lovas-Kiss, Orsolya Vincze & Molnár V. Attila
Several important habitats have become threatened in the last few centuries in the Mediterranean Basin due to major changes adopted in land use practices. The consequent loss of natural and semi-natural orchid habitats lead to the appreciation of small anthropogenic habitats, such as cemeteries and roadside verges. Colonization of cemeteries and roadside verges by orchids has long been known, but no study to date compared the suitability of these two anthropogenic habitats for orchids. Therefore,...

Data from: Broodmate aggression and life history variation in accipitrid birds of prey

Tomás Redondo, José María Romero, Ricardo Díaz-Delgado & Jenő Nagy
Aggressive sibling competition for parental food resources is relatively infrequent in animals but highly prevalent and extreme among certain bird families, particularly accipitrid raptors (Accipitriformes). Intense broodmate aggression within this group is associated with a suite of traits including a large adult size, small broods, low provisioning rates, and slow development. In this study, we apply phylogenetic comparative analyses to assess the relative importance of several behavioral, morphological, life history, and ecological variables as predictors...

Climate and mating systems as drivers of global diversity of parental care in frogs

Balázs Vági, Zsolt Végvári, András Liker, Robert P. Freckleton & Tamás Székely
Aim Amphibians exhibit unusually diverse reproductive modes, including a wide array of parental care strategies. The evolutionary drivers of this diversity, however, remain unclear. Here we investigate three major factors which may predict interspecific variation in parental care strategies: climate, intrasexual selection and social environment. We hypothesise that some care forms evolved to cope with harsh conditions such as dry or unpredictable habitats. We contrast this prediction with the hypothesis that parental roles have coevolved...

Are evolutionary transitions in sexual size dimorphism related to sex determination in reptiles? - Electronic supplementary material

Gergely Katona
Sex determination systems are highly variable in vertebrates, although neither the causes nor the implications of this diversity are fully understood. Theory suggests that sex determination is expected to relate to sexual size dimorphism, because environmental sex determination promotes sex-specific developmental bias in embryonic growth rates. Furthermore, selection for larger size in one sex or the other has been proposed to drive the evolution of different genetic sex determination systems. Here we investigate whether sex...

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...

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