Estimates of range-wide abundance, harvest, and harvest rate are fundamental for sound inferences about the role of exploitation in the dynamics of free-ranging wildlife populations, but reliability of existing survey methods for abundance estimation is rarely assessed using alternative approaches. North American mallard populations have been surveyed each spring since 1955 using internationally coordinated aerial surveys, but population size can also be estimated with Lincoln's method using banding and harvest data. We estimated late summer...
Globally, most restoration efforts focus on re-creating the physical structure (flora or physical features) of a target ecosystem with the assumption that other ecosystem components will follow. Here we investigate that assumption by documenting biogeographical patterns in an important invertebrate taxon, the parasitoid wasp family Ichneumonidae, in a recently reforested Hawaiian landscape. Specifically, we test the influence of (1) planting configurations (corridors versus patches), (2) vegetation age, (3) distance from mature native forest, (4) surrounding...
Data from: Cross-biome metagenomic analyses of soil microbial communities and their functional attributesNoah Fierer, Jonathan W. Leff, Byron J. Adams, Uffe N. Nielsen, Scott Thomas Bates, Christian L. Lauber, Sarah Owens, Jack A. Gilbert, Diana H. Wall & J. Gregory Caporaso
For centuries ecologists have studied how the diversity and functional traits of plant and animal communities vary across biomes. In contrast, we have only just begun exploring similar questions for soil microbial communities despite soil microbes being the dominant engines of biogeochemical cycles and a major pool of living biomass in terrestrial ecosystems. We used metagenomic sequencing to compare the composition and functional attributes of 16 soil microbial communities collected from cold deserts, hot deserts,...
Data from: Current approaches using genetic distances produce poor estimates of landscape resistance to interindividual dispersalTabitha A. Graves, Paul Beier & Jeffrey Andrew Royle
Landscape resistance reflects how difficult it is for genes to move across an area with particular attributes (e.g., land cover, slope). An increasingly popular approach to estimate resistance uses Mantel and partial Mantel tests or causal modeling to relate observed genetic distances to effective distances under alternative sets of resistance parameters. Relatively few alternative sets of resistance parameters are tested, leading to relatively poor coverage of the parameter space. Although this approach does not explicitly...
Data from: Hybridization of an invasive shrub affects tolerance and resistance to defoliation by a biological control agentWyatt I. Williams, Jonathan M. Friedman, John F. Gaskin & Andrew P. Norton
Evolution has contributed to the successful invasion of exotic plant species in their introduced ranges, but how evolution affects particular control strategies is still under evaluation. For instance, classical biological control, a common strategy involving the utilization of highly specific natural enemies to control exotic pests, may be negatively affected by host hybridization because of shifts in plant traits, such as root allocation or chemical constituents. We investigated introgression between two parent species of the...
Data from: Plasticity of parental care under the risk of predation: how much should parents reduce care?Cameron K. Ghalambor, Susana I. Peluc & Thomas E. Martin
Predation can be an important agent of natural selection shaping parental care behaviours, and can also favor behavioural plasticity. Parent birds often decrease the rate that they visit the nest to provision offspring when perceived risk is high. Yet the plasticity of such responses may differ among species as a function of either their relative risk of predation, or the mean rate of provisioning. Here, we report parental provisioning responses to experimental increases in the...
Data from: Diffuse symbioses: roles of plant–plant, plant–microbe and microbe–microbe interactions in structuring the soil microbiomeMatthew G. Bakker, Daniel C. Schlatter, Lindsey Otto-Hanson & Linda L. Kinkel
A conceptual model emphasizing direct host–microbe interactions has dominated work on host-associated microbiomes. To understand plant–microbiome associations, however, broader influences on microbiome composition and functioning must be incorporated, such as those arising from plant–plant and microbe–microbe interactions. We sampled soil microbiomes associated with target plant species (Andropogon gerardii, Schizachyrium scoparium, Lespedeza capitata, Lupinus perennis) grown in communities varying in plant richness (1-, 4-, 8- or 16-species). We assessed Streptomyces antagonistic activity and analysed bacterial and...
Numerous factors influence fitness of free-ranging animals, yet often these are uncharacterized. We integrated GPS habitat use data and genetic profiling to determine their influence on fitness proxies (mass, length, and body condition) in a threatened population of grizzly bears (Ursus arctos) in Alberta, Canada. We detected distinct genetic and habitat use (ecotype) clusters, with individual cluster assignments, or genotype/ecotype, being correlated (Pearson r = 0.34, P < 0.01). Related individuals showed evidence of similar...
Data from: Comparative genomics reveals insight into virulence strategies of plant pathogenic oomycetesBishwo N. Adhikari, John P. Hamilton, Marcelo M. Zerillo, Ned Tisserat, C. André Lévesque & C. Robin Buell
The kingdom Stramenopile includes diatoms, brown algae, and oomycetes. Plant pathogenic oomycetes, including Phytophthora, Pythium and downy mildew species, cause devastating diseases on a wide range of host species and have a significant impact on agriculture. Here, we report comparative analyses on the genomes of thirteen straminipilous species, including eleven plant pathogenic oomycetes, to explore common features linked to their pathogenic lifestyle. We report the sequencing, assembly, and annotation of six Pythium genomes and comparison...
While much is known about the factors that control each component of the terrestrial nitrogen (N) cycle, it is less clear how these factors affect total N availability, the sum of organic and inorganic forms potentially available to microorganisms and plants. This is particularly true for N-poor ecosystems such as drylands, which are highly sensitive to climate change and desertification processes that can lead to the loss of soil nutrients such as N. We evaluated...
Data from: Allometric convergence in savanna trees and implications for plant scaling models in variable ecosystemsAndrew T. Tredennick, Lisa Patrick Bentley & Niall P. Hanan
Theoretical models of allometric scaling provide frameworks for understanding and predicting how and why the morphology and function of organisms vary with scale. It remains unclear, however, if the predictions of ‘universal’ scaling models for vascular plants hold across diverse species in variable environments. Phenomena such as competition and disturbance may drive allometric scaling relationships away from theoretical predictions based on an optimized tree. Here, we use a hierarchical Bayesian approach to calculate tree-specific, species-specific,...
Data from: Vascular plants mediate the effects of aridity and soil properties on ammonia-oxidizing bacteria and archaeaManuel Delgado-Baquerizo, Antonio Gallardo, Matthew D. Wallenstein & Fernando T. Maestre
An integrated perspective of the most important factors driving the abundance of ammonia-oxidizing bacteria (AOB) and archaea (AOA) in natural ecosystems is lacking, especially in drylands. We evaluated how different climatic, abiotic, and nutrient-related factors determine AOA and AOB abundance in bare and vegetated microsites from grasslands throughout the Mediterranean Basin. We found a strong negative relationship between the abundance of AOA genes and soil fertility (availability of C, N, and P). Aridity and other...
Colorado State University12
University of Minnesota2
King Juan Carlos University2
Pablo de Olavide University2
University of Montana1
South Dakota State University1
University of Alberta1
University of Nevada Reno1
Alberta Environment and Sustainable Resource Development1