40 Works

The island biogeography of the eBird citizen-science program

Frank La Sorte & Marius Somveille
Aim: Island biotas face an array of unique challenges under global change. Monitoring and research efforts, however, have been hindered by the large number of islands, their broad distribution and geographic isolation. Global citizen-science initiatives have the potential to address these deficiencies. Here, we determine how the eBird citizen-science program is currently sampling island bird assemblages annually and how these patterns are developing over time. Location: Global. Taxa: Birds. Methods: We compiled occurrence information of...

A dicamba resistance endowing IAA16 mutation leads to significant vegetative growth defects and impaired competitiveness in kochia (Bassia scoparia)

Chenxi Wu, Sherry LeClere, Kang Liu, Marta Paciorek, Alejandro Perez-Jones, Phil Westra & Douglas Sammons
Precise quantification of the fitness cost of synthetic auxins resistance has been impeded by lack of knowledge for the genetic basis of resistance in weeds. Recent elucidation of a resistance endowing IAA16 mutation (G73N) in a key weed species kochia (Bassia scoparia), allows detailed characterization of the contribution of resistance alleles to weed fitness, both in the presence and absence of herbicides. Different G73N genotypes from a segregating resistant parental line (9425) were characterized for...

Mountain goat molt from community photographs

Katarzyna Nowak, Shane Richards, Joel Berger, Amy Panikowski, Aerin Jacob, Donald Reid, Greg Newman, Nicholas Young & Jon Beckmann
Participatory approaches, such as community photography, can engage the public in questions of societal and scientific interest while helping advance understanding of ecological patterns and processes. We combined data extracted from community-sourced, spatially-explicit photographs with research findings from 2018 fieldwork in the Yukon, Canada, to evaluate winter coat molt patterns and phenology in mountain goats (Oreamnos americanus), a cold-adapted, alpine mammal. Leveraging the community science portals iNaturalist and CitSci, in less than a year we...

Data from: Environmental change, if unaccounted, prevents detection of cryptic evolution in a wild population

Tomos Potter, Ronald D. Bassar, Paul Bentzen, Emily W. Ruell, Julián Torres-Dowdall, Corey A. Handelsman, Cameron K. Ghalambor, Joseph Travis, David N. Reznick & Tim Coulson
Detecting contemporary evolution requires demonstrating that genetic change has occurred. Mixed-effects models allow estimation of quantitative genetic parameters and are widely used to study evolution in wild populations. However, predictions of evolution based on these parameters frequently fail to match observations. Furthermore, such studies often lack an independent measure of evolutionary change against which to verify predictions. Here, we applied three commonly used quantitative genetic approaches to predict the evolution of size at maturity in...

Data from: A trait-based approach to assessing resistance and resilience to wildfire in two iconic North American conifers

Kyle Rodman, Thomas Veblen, Robert Andrus, Neil Enright, Joseph Fontaine, Angela Gonzalez, Miranda Redmond & Andreas Wion
Ongoing changes in fire activity have the potential to drive widespread shifts in Earth’s vegetation. Plant traits and vital rates can be indicators of the ability of individuals to survive fire (resistance) and populations to persist (resilience) following fire and provide a method to assess vulnerability to fire-driven vegetation shifts. In 15 study sites spanning climatic gradients in the southern Rocky Mountains, U.S.A., we quantified variation in key traits and vital rates of two co-occurring,...

Pronghorn population genomics show connectivity at the core of their range

Melanie E.F. LaCava, Roderick B. Gagne, Sierra M. Love Stowell, Kyle D. Gustafson, C. Alex Buerkle, Lee Knox & Holly B. Ernest
Preserving connectivity in the core of a species’ range is crucial for long-term persistence. However, a combination of ecological characteristics, social behavior, and landscape features can reduce connectivity among wildlife populations and lead to genetic structure. Pronghorn (Antilocapra americana), for example, exhibit fluctuating herd dynamics and variable seasonal migration strategies, but GPS-tracking studies show that landscape features such as highways impede their movements, leading to conflicting hypotheses about expected levels of genetic structure. Given that...

Ensemble model output of North American atmospheric CO2 simulations for summer 2016, including transport, CASA and CT2017, and boundary condition ensembles

S. Feng, T. Lauvaux, C. Williams, K.J. Davis, Y. Zhou, I. Baker, Z.R. Barkley & D. Wesloh

Magnitude and direction of stream-forest community interactions change with time scale

Amy Marcarelli, Colden Baxter, Joseph Benjamin, Yo Miyake, Masashi Murakami, Kurt Fausch & Shigeru Nakano
Networks of direct and indirect biotic interactions underpin the complex dynamics and stability of ecological systems, yet experimental and theoretical studies often yield conflicting evidence regarding the direction (positive or negative) or magnitude of these interactions. We revisited pioneering datasets collected at the deciduous forested Horonai Stream and conducted ecosystem-level syntheses to demonstrate that the direction of direct and indirect interactions can change depending on the timescale of observation. Prior experimental studies showed that terrestrial...

Shortgrass steppe and northern mixedgrass prairie plant species traits

Dana Blumenthal, Julie Kray, Kevin Mueller & Troy Ocheltree
Despite progress in trait-based ecology, there is limited understanding of the plant traits that structure semiarid grasslands. In particular, it remains unclear how traits that enable plants to cope with water limitation are related to traits that influence other key functions such as herbivore defense and growth. The hypothesis that drought and herbivory exert convergent selection pressures is supported for morphological traits, but largely untested for struct­ural, physiological, and phenological traits. Drought and economic traits...

Resolving the Dust Bowl paradox of grassland responses to extreme drought

Alan Knapp
During the Dust Bowl drought, central US grasslands responded unexpectedly to a decade of hot, dry conditions. Grass species adapted to high temperatures with higher water use efficiency (C4 grasses) decreased while those preferring cooler climates (C3 grasses) increased. We reproduced this surprising response by experimentally imposing extreme drought in two native grasslands. Analysis of historical climate records revealed that during extreme drought years, the proportion of annual precipitation that occurs during cooler months increases....

Interspecific social dominance networks reveal mechanisms promoting coexistence in sympatric charrs in Hokkaido, Japan

Kurt Fausch, Shigeru Nakano, Satoshi Kitano, Yoichiro Kanno & Seoghyun Kim
1. Coexistence of species requires equalizing mechanisms that minimize fitness differences, which are balanced by stabilizing mechanisms that enhance negative intraspecific interactions versus interspecific ones. Here, we develop a simple theoretical framework that allows measuring the relative strength of intraspecific versus interspecific competition in dominance hierarchies. We use it to evaluate mechanisms promoting coexistence between congeneric charrs that compete for foraging positions, which strongly influence density-dependent growth and survival. 2. Agonistic interactions (n = 761)...

Phylogenomic dataset used for evolutionary rate covariation analyses in Forsythe et al.

Evan Forsythe
Nuclear and plastid (chloroplast) genomes experience different mutation rates, levels of selection, and transmission modes, yet key cellular functions depend on coordinated interactions between proteins encoded in both genomes. Functionally related proteins often show correlated changes in rates of sequence evolution across a phylogeny (evolutionary rate covariation or ERC), offering a means to detect previously unidentified suites of coevolving and cofunctional genes. We performed phylogenomic analyses across angiosperm diversity, scanning the nuclear genome for genes...

Phylogenomic data reveal widespred introgression across the range of an alpine and arctic specialist

Erik Funk, Garth Spellman, Kevin Winker, Jack Withrow, Erika Zavaleta, Kristen Ruegg & Scott Taylor
Understanding how gene flow affects population divergence and speciation remains challenging. Differentiating one evolutionary process from another can be difficult because multiple processes can produce similar patterns, and more than one process can occur simultaneously. While simple population models produce predictable results, how these processes balance in taxa with patchy distributions and complicated natural histories is less certain. These types of populations might be highly connected through migration (gene flow), but can experience stronger effects...

Effects of social structure and management on risk of disease establishment in wild pigs

Anni Yang, Peter Schlichting, Bethany Wight, Wesley Anderson, Sarah Chinn, Mark Wilber, Ryan Miller, James Beasley, Raoul Boughton, Kurt VerCauteren, George Wittemyer & Kim Pepin
1. Contact heterogeneity among hosts determines invasion and spreading dynamics of infectious disease, thus its characterization is essential for identifying effective disease control strategies. Yet, little is known about the factors shaping contact networks in many wildlife species and how wildlife management actions might affect contact networks. 2. Wild pigs in North America are an invasive, socially-structured species that pose a health concern for domestic swine given their ability to transmit numerous devastating diseases such...

A place to land: spatiotemporal drivers of stopover habitat use by migrating birds

Emily Cohen, Jeffrey Buler, Kyle Horton, Andrew Farnsworth, Peter Marra, Hannah Clipp, Jaclyn Smolinsky & Daniel Sheldon
Migrating birds require en route habitats to rest and refuel. Yet habitat use has never been integrated with passage to understand factors that determine where and when birds stopover during spring and autumn migration. Here, we introduce the stopover-to-passage ratio (SPR), the percentage of passage migrants that stop in an area, and use eight years of data from 12 weather surveillance radars to estimate over 50% SPR during spring and autumn through the Gulf of...

Coalescent-based species delimitation is sensitive to geographic sampling and isolation by distance

Nicholas Mason, Nicholas Fletcher, Brian Gill, Chris Funk & Kelly Zamudio
Species are a fundamental unit of biodiversity that are delimited via genetic data and coalescent-based methods with increasing frequency. Despite the widespread use of coalescent-based species delimitation, we do not fully understand the sensitivity of these methods to potential sources of bias and violations of their underlying assumptions. One implicit assumption of coalescent-based species delimitation is that geographic sampling is adequate and representative of genetic variation among populations within the lineage of interest. Yet exhaustive...

Genetic and functional variation across regional and local scales is associated with climate in a foundational prairie grass

Ava Hoffman, Julie A. Bushey, Troy W. Ocheltree & Melinda D. Smith
Global change forecasts in ecosystems require knowledge of within species diversity, particularly of dominant species within communities. We assessed site-level diversity and capacity for adaptation of the dominant species of the shortgrass steppe biome of the Central US, Bouteloua gracilis. We quantified genetic diversity from 17 sites across regional scales, north-south from New Mexico to South Dakota, and local scales in Northern Colorado. We also quantified phenotype and plasticity within and among sites and determined...

The importance of nighttime length to latitudinal variation in avian incubation attentiveness

Helen Sofaer, Lauren Nagle, Scott Sillett, Jongmin Yoon & Cameron Ghalambor
Avian incubation provides an opportunity to test how parental behavior and ecological conditions interact to shape variation in offspring traits along geographic gradients. In particular, the duration of the incubation period is shorter at higher latitudes, but the degree to which this pattern arises from genetic divergence in rates of growth and development versus from parentally-mediated variation in egg temperatures is controversial. At higher latitudes parents have higher daytime incubation attentiveness, i.e., they spend a...

Novel hybrid finds a peri-urban niche: Allen’s Hummingbirds in southern California

Braden L. Godwin, Melanie E. F. LaCava, Beth Mendelsohn, Roderick B. Gagne, Kyle D. Gustafson, Sierra M. Love Stowell, Andrew Engilis, Lisa A. Tell & Holly B. Ernest
Species range expansions and contractions can have ecological and genetic consequences, and thus are important areas of study for conservation. Hybridization and introgression are not uncommon in closely related populations that experience secondary contact during a range expansion. Allen’s Hummingbird (Selasphorus sasin) in California comprises two subspecies: the migratory S. s. sasin, which winters in central Mexico and breeds in central and northern California, and the resident S. s. sedentarius, which lives and breeds year-round...

Pupil and masking responses to light as functional measures of retinal degeneration in mice Mus Musculus

Stewart Thompson, Ethan Contreras, Carley Dearing, Crystal Ashinhurst, Betty Fish, Sajila Hossain, Ariana Rey & Primal Silva
Background: Pre-clinical testing of retinal pathology and treatment efficacy depends on reliable and valid measures of retinal function. The electroretinogram (ERG) and tests of visual acuity are the ideal standard, but can be unmeasurable while useful vision remains. Non-image-forming responses to light such as the pupillary light reflex (PLR) are attractive surrogates. However, it is not clear how accurately such responses reflect changes in visual capability in specific disease models. The purpose of this study...

Variations in tree growth provide limited evidence of species mixture effects in Interior West U.S.A. mixed-conifer forests

Christopher Looney, Wilfred Previant & Linda Nagel
1. In mixed stands, species complementarity (e.g., facilitation and competition reduction) may enhance forest tree productivity. Although positive mixture effects have been identified in forests worldwide, the majority of studies have focused on two-species interactions in managed systems with high functional diversity. We extended this line of research to examine mixture effects on tree productivity across landscape-scale compositional and environmental gradients in the low functional diversity, fire-suppressed, mixed-conifer forests of the U.S. Interior West. 2....

Detrimental impacts of climate change may be exacerbated by density dependent population regulation in blue mussels

Kim Jaatinen, Mats Westerbom, Alf Norkko, Olli Mustonen & David Koons
1. The climate on our planet is changing and the range distributions of organisms are shifting in response. In aquatic environments, species might not be able to redistribute poleward or into deeper water when temperatures rise because of barriers, reduced light availability, altered water chemistry, or any combination of these. How species respond to climate change may depend on physiological adaptability, but also on the population dynamics of the species. 2. Density dependence is a...

Winter inputs buffer streamflow sensitivity to snowpack losses in the Salt River Watershed in the Lower Colorado River Basin

Marcos Robles, John C. Hammond, Stephanie K. Kampf, Joel A. Biederman & Eleonora M. C. Demaria
Recent streamflow declines in the Upper Colorado River Basin raise concerns about the sensitivity of water supply for 40 million people to rising temperatures. Yet, other studies in western US river basins present a paradox: streamflow has not consistently declined with warming and snow loss. A potential explanation for this lack of consistency is warming-induced production of winter runoff when potential evaporative losses are low. This mechanism is more likely in basins at lower elevations...

Data from: Climate change increases predation risk for a keystone species of the boreal forest

Michael Peers, Yasmine Majchrzak, Allyson Menzies, Emily Studd, Guillaume Bastille-Rousseau, Rudy Boonstra, Murray Humphries, Thomas Jung, Alice Kenney, Charles Krebs, Dennis Murray & Stan Boutin
Canada lynx (Lynx canadensis) and snowshoe hares (Lepus americanus) form a keystone predator-prey cycle that has large impacts on the North-American boreal forest vertebrate community. Snowshoe hares and lynx are both well-suited for snowy winters, but climate change associated shifts in snow conditions could lower hare survival and alter cyclic dynamics. Using detailed monitoring of snowshoe hare cause-specific mortality, behaviour, and prevailing weather, we demonstrate that hare mortality risk is strongly influenced by variation in...

Delimitation despite discordance: Evaluating the species limits of a confounding species complex in the face of mitonuclear discordance

Thomas Firneno, Justin O'Neill, Michael Itgen, Timothy Kihneman, Josiah Townsend & Matthew Fujita
The delimitation of species is an essential pursuit of biology, and proper taxonomies are crucial for the assessment and conservation management of organismal diversity. However, delimiting species can be hindered by a number of factors including highly conserved morphologies (e.g. cryptic species), differences in criteria of species concepts, and discordance between gene topologies (e.g. mitonuclear discordance). Here we use a taxonomically confounded species complex of toads in Central America that exhibits extensive mitonuclear discordance to...

Registration Year

  • 2020

Resource Types

  • Dataset


  • Colorado State University
  • University of Wyoming
  • Agricultural Research Service
  • Pennsylvania State University
  • Cornell University
  • University of California, Berkeley
  • United States Department of Agriculture
  • McGill University
  • Missouri Southern State University
  • Northern Arizona University