32 Works

Data from: Winter territory prospecting is associated with life-history stage but not activity in a passerine

Alfredo Sánchez-Tójar, Isabel Winney, Antje Girndt, Mirre J.P. Simons, Shinichi Nakagawa, Terry Burke, Julia Schroeder & Mirre J. P. Simons
Finding a high quality territory is essential for many animals to reproduce successfully. Despite its importance for fitness, we know little about the process of territory prospecting in wild birds, and whether individual traits and behaviours, such as personality, co-vary with territory prospecting. Here, we use long-term data from a wild, insular house sparrow Passer domesticus population to test three hypotheses about territory fidelity and prospecting: (1) House sparrows show high territory fidelity between years...

Data from: Do grazing intensity and herbivore type affect soil health? Insights from a semi-arid productivity gradient

David J. Eldridge, Manuel Delgado-Baquerizo, Samantha K. Travers, James Val, Ian Oliver & David Eldridge
Grazing is one of the most widespread forms of intensive management on Earth and is linked to reductions in soil health. However, little is known about the relative influence of herbivore type, herbivore intensity and site productivity on soil health. This lack of knowledge reduces our capacity to manage landscapes where grazing is a major land use. We used structural equation modelling to assess the effects of recent (cattle, sheep, goats, kangaroos and rabbit dung)...

Data from: Does size matter? Examining the drivers of mammalian vocalisations

Kobe Martin, Marlee A. Tucker & Tracey L. Rogers
Previous studies of the vocalisation frequencies of mammals have suggested that it is either body mass or environment that drives these frequencies. Using 193 species across the globe from the terrestrial and aquatic environments and a model selection approach, we identified that the best supported model for minimum and maximum frequencies for vocalisation included both body mass and environment. The minimum frequencies of vocalisations of species from all environments retained the influence of body mass....

Data from: Expression of eukaryotic-like protein in the microbiome of sponges

Cristina Díez-Vives, Lucas Moitinho-Silva, Shaun Nielsen, David Reynolds & Torsten Thomas
Eukaryotic-like proteins (ELPs) are classes of proteins that are found in prokaryotes, but have a likely evolutionary origin in eukaryotes. ELPs have been postulated to mediate host-microbiome interactions. Recent work has discovered that prokaryotic symbionts of sponges contain abundant and diverse genes for ELPs, which could modulate interactions with their filter-feeding and phagocytic host. However, the extent to which these ELP genes are actually used and expressed by the symbionts is poorly understood. Here we...

Data from: Dietary responses of Sahul (Pleistocene Australia–New Guinea) megafauna to climate and environmental change

Larisa R.G. DeSantis, Judith H. Field, Stephen Wroe & John R. Dodson
Throughout the late Quaternary, the Sahul (Pleistocene Australia–New Guinea) vertebrate fauna was dominated by a diversity of large mammals, birds, and reptiles, commonly referred to as megafauna. Since ca. 450–400Ka, approximately 88 species disappeared in Sahul, including kangaroos exceeding 200kg in size, wombat-like animals the size of hippopotamuses, flightless birds, and giant monitor lizards that were likely venomous. Ongoing debates over the primary cause of these extinctions have typically favored climate change or human activities....

Data from: A synthesis of empirical plant dispersal kernels

James M. Bullock, Laura Mallada González, Riin Tamme, Lars Götzenberger, Steven M. White, Meelis Pärtel & Danny A. P. Hooftman
Dispersal is fundamental to ecological processes at all scales and levels of organization, but progress is limited by a lack of information about the general shape and form of plant dispersal kernels. We addressed this gap by synthesizing empirical data describing seed dispersal and fitting general dispersal kernels representing major plant types and dispersal modes. A comprehensive literature search resulted in 107 papers describing 168 dispersal kernels for 144 vascular plant species. The data covered...

Data from: Understanding the spatial scale of genetic connectivity at sea: unique insights from a land fish and a meta-analysis

Georgina M. Cooke, Timothy E. Schlub, William B. Sherwin & Terry J. Ord
Quantifying the spatial scale of population connectivity is important for understanding the evolutionary potential of ecologically divergent populations and for designing conservation strategies to preserve those populations. For marine organisms like fish, the spatial scale of connectivity is generally set by a pelagic larval phase. This has complicated past estimates of connectivity because detailed information on larval movements are difficult to obtain. Genetic approaches provide a tractable alternative and have the added benefit of estimating...

Data from: Ornament size and colour as alternative strategies for effective communication in gliding lizards

Danielle A. Klomp, Terry Ord, Indraneil Das, Arvin Diesmos, Norhayati Ahmad, Devi Stuart-Fox & T. J. Ord
Sexual ornamentation needs to be conspicuous to be effective in attracting potential mates and defending territories and indeed, a multitude of ways exists to achieve this. Two principal mechanisms for increasing conspicuousness are to increase the ornament's colour or brightness contrast against the background and to increase the size of the ornament. We assessed the relationship between the colour and size of the dewlap, a large extendible throat-fan, across a range of species of gliding...

Data from: Does wildlife resource selection accurately inform corridor conservation?

Briana Abrahms, Sarah C. Sawyer, Neil R. Jordan, J. Weldon McNutt, Alan M. Wilson & Justin S. Brashares
Evaluating landscape connectivity and identifying and protecting corridors for animal movement have become central challenges in applied ecology and conservation. Currently, resource selection analyses are widely used to focus corridor planning where animal movement is predicted to occur. An animal's behavioural state (e.g. foraging, dispersing) is a significant determinant of resource selection patterns, yet has largely been ignored in connectivity assessments. We review 16 years of connectivity studies employing resource selection analysis to evaluate how...

Data from: Dendrogramma is a siphonophore

Timothy D. O'Hara, Andrew F. Hugall, Hugh MacIntosh, Kate M. Naughton, Alan Williams & Adnan Moussalli
Dendrogramma was the iconic deep-sea animal of 2014, voted among the top-ten new species described that year. The two species described are mushroom shaped animals, diploblastic, with an apparent gastrovascular system that extends from the base of the stalk to bifurcating canals that radiate through the flat disc. The authors could not assign the new genus to any known animal group with certainty, leading to numerous media reports that it belonged to an entirely new...

Data from: Extinction of South American sparassodontans (Metatheria): environmental fluctuations or complex ecological processes?

Camilo López-Aguirre, Michael Archer, Suzanne J. Hand & Shawn W. Laffan
Sparassodontans are a diverse but now extinct group of metatherians that were apex predators in South America during most of the Cenozoic. Studying their decline has been controversial mainly due to the scarcity of the fossil record, and different methodological approaches have led to contradictory hypotheses. In an effort to explore questions about their extinction, we developed a novel multi-model statistical approach to analyse all of the currently available data at a continental scale. Using...

Data from: Perceptual impairment in face identification with poor sleep

Louise Beattie, Darragh Walsh, Jessica McLaren, Stephany M. Biello & David White
Previous studies have shown impaired memory for faces following restricted sleep. However, it is not known whether lack of sleep impairs performance on face identification tasks that do not rely on recognition memory, despite these tasks being more prevalent in security and forensic professions—for example, in photo-ID checks at national borders. Here we tested whether poor sleep affects accuracy on a standard test of face-matching ability that does not place demands on memory: the Glasgow...

Data from: The nutritional geometry of parental effects: maternal and paternal macronutrient consumption and offspring phenotype in a neriid fly

Russell Bonduriansky, Aidan Runagall-McNaull & Angela J. Crean
Although the ecological and evolutionary importance of environmentally induced parental effects is now widely recognized, such effects are still typically studied by contrasting just two environments in a single parental sex. Yet, parental effects should generally be viewed as reaction norms, and a more complete understanding of their ecological role therefore requires examining continuously varying and interacting environmental variables in both parental sexes. We used nutritional geometry to investigate linear, nonlinear and interactive effects of...

Data from: Revisiting the cost of carnivory in mammals

Marlee A. Tucker, Terry J. Ord & Tracey L. Rogers
Predator-prey relationships play a key role in the evolution and ecology of carnivores. An understanding of predator-prey relationships and how this differs across species and environments provides information on how carnivorous strategies have evolved and how they may change in response to environmental change. We aim to determine how mammals overcame the challenges of living within the marine environment; specifically, how this altered predator-prey body mass relationships relative to terrestrial mammals. Using predator and prey...

Data from: MR1-restricted mucosal-associated invariant T (MAIT) cells respond to mycobacterial vaccination and infection in nonhuman primates

Justin M. Greene, Pradyot Dash, Sobhan Roy, Curtis McMurtrey, Walid Awad, Jason S. Reed, Katherine B. Hammond, Shaheed Abdulhaqq, Helen L. Wu, Benjamin J. Burwitz, Benjamin F. Roth, David W. Morrow, Julia C. Ford, Guangwu Xu, Joseph Y. Bae, Hugh Crank, Alfred W. Legasse, Thurston H. Dang, Hui Yee Greenaway, Monica Kurniawan, Marielle C. Gold, Melanie J. Harriff, Deborah A. Lewinsohn, Byung S. Park, Michael K. Axthelm … & Jonah B. Sacha
Studies on mucosal-associated invariant T cells (MAITs) in nonhuman primates (NHP), a physiologically relevant model of human immunity, are handicapped due to a lack of macaque MAIT-specific reagents. Here we show that while MR1 ligand-contact residues are conserved between human and multiple NHP species, three T-cell receptor contact-residue mutations in NHP MR1 diminish binding of human MR1 tetramers to macaque MAITs. Construction of naturally loaded macaque MR1 tetramers facilitated identification and characterization of macaque MR1-binding...

Data from: Association mapping of morphological traits in wild and captive zebra finches: reliable within but not between populations

Ulrich Knief, Holger Schielzeth, Niclas Backstrom, Georg Hemmrich-Stanisak, Michael Wittig, Andre Franke, Simon C. Griffith, Hans Ellegren, Bart Kempenaers & Wolfgang Forstmeier
Identifying causal genetic variants underlying heritable phenotypic variation is a longstanding goal in evolutionary genetics. We previously identified several quantitative trait loci (QTL) for five morphological traits in a captive population of zebra finches (Taeniopygia guttata) by whole-genome linkage mapping. We here follow up on these studies with the aim to narrow down on the quantitative trait variants (QTN) in one wild and three captive populations. First, we performed an association study using 672 single...

Data from: Diet adaptation in dog reflects spread of prehistoric agriculture

Maja Arendt, Kylie M. Cairnes, J.W.O. Ballard, Peter Savolainen & Erik Axelsson
Adaptations allowing dogs to thrive on a diet rich in starch, including a significant AMY2B copy number gain, constituted a crucial step in the evolution of the dog from the wolf. It is however not clear if this change was associated with the initial domestication or represents a secondary shift related to the subsequent development of agriculture. Previous efforts to study this process were based on geographically limited data sets and low-resolution methods and it...

Data from: Reconstruction of the cortical maps of the Tasmanian tiger and comparison to the Tasmanian devil

Gregory S. Berns & Ken W. S. Ashwell
The last known Tasmanian tiger (Thylacinus cynocephalus)–aka the thylacine–died in 1936. Because its natural behavior was never scientifically documented, we are left to infer aspects of its behavior from museum specimens and historical recollections of bushmen. Recent advances in brain imaging have made it possible to scan postmortem specimens of a wide range of animals, even more than a decade old. Any thylacine brain, however, would be more than 100 years old. Here, we show...

Data from: A multi-decade dataset of monthly beach profile surveys and inshore wave forcing at Narrabeen, Australia

Ian L. Turner, Mitchell D. Harley, Andrew D. Short, Joshua A. Simmons, Melissa A. Bracs, Matthew S. Phillips & Kristen D. Splinter
Long-term observational datasets that record and quantify variability, changes and trends in beach morphology at sandy coastlines together with the accompanying wave climate are rare. A monthly beach profile survey program commenced in April 1976 at Narrabeen located on Sydney’s Northern Beaches in southeast Australia is one of just a handful of sites worldwide where on-going and uninterrupted beach monitoring now spans multiple decades. With the Narrabeen survey program reaching its 40-year milestone in April...

Data from: Shrub encroachment is linked to extirpation of an apex predator

Christopher E. Gordon, David J. Eldridge, William J. Ripple, Mathew S. Crowther, Ben D. Moore & Mike Letnic
The abundance of shrubs has increased throughout Earth's arid lands. This ‘shrub encroachment’ has been linked to livestock grazing, fire-suppression and elevated atmospheric CO2 concentrations facilitating shrub recruitment. Apex predators initiate trophic cascades which can influence the abundance of many species across multiple trophic levels within ecosystems. Extirpation of apex predators is linked inextricably to pastoralism, but has not been considered as a factor contributing to shrub encroachment. Here, we ask if trophic cascades triggered...

Data from: Lifespan and reproductive cost explain interspecific variation in the optimal onset of reproduction

Emeline Mourocq, Pierre Bize, Sandra Bouwhuis, Russell Bradley, Anne Charmantier, Carlos De La Cruz, Szymon Marian Obniak, Richard H. M. Espie, Márton Herenyi, Hermann Hötker, Oliver Kruger, John Marzluff, Anders P. Møller, Shinichi Nakagawa, Richard A. Phillips, Andrew N. Radford, Alexandre Roulin, János Török, Juliana Valencia, Martijn Van De Pol, Ian G. Warkentin, Isabel S. Winney, Andrew G. Wood, Michael Griesser & Szymon M. Drobniak
Fitness can be profoundly influenced by the age at first reproduction (AFR), but to date the AFR-fitness relationship only has been investigated intraspecifically. Here we investigated the relationship between AFR and average lifetime reproductive success (LRS) across 34 bird species. We assessed differences in the deviation of the Optimal AFR (i.e., the species-specific AFR associated with the highest LRS) from the age at sexual maturity, considering potential effects of life-history as well as social and...

Data from: Whole-chloroplast analysis as an approach for fine-tuning the preservation of a highly charismatic but critically endangered species, Wollemia nobilis (Araucariaceae)

Abigail Greenfield, Hannah McPherson, Tony Auld, Sven Delaney, Catherine A. Offord, Marlien Van Der Merwe, Jia-Yee S. Yap & Maurizio Rossetto
The critically endangered Wollemia nobilis W.G. Jones, K.D. Hill & J.M. Allen is endemic to Wollemi National Park north of Sydney (Australia). All known wild individuals are restricted to four sites in a single canyon system. W. nobilis can reproduce sexually but at all sites individual clumps can be multi-stemmed from a common base. In the first genetic study of this species, no genetic variation was found across multiple genetic marker types representing hundreds of...

Data from: Ibobbly mobile health intervention for suicide prevention in Australian Indigenous youth: a pilot randomised controlled trial

Joseph Tighe, Fiona Shand, Rebecca Ridani, Andrew Mackinnon, Nicole De La Mata & Helen Christensen
Objectives: Rates of youth suicide in Australian Indigenous communities are four times the national youth average and demand innovative interventions. Historical and persistent disadvantage is coupled with multiple barriers to help-seeking. Mobile phone applications offer the opportunity to deliver therapeutic interventions directly to individuals in remote communities.The pilot study aimed to evaluate the effectiveness of a self-help mobile app (ibobbly) targeting suicidal ideation, depression, psychological distress, and impulsivity among Indigenous youth in remote Australia. Setting:...

Data from: Land colonisation by fish is associated with predictable changes in life history

Edward R. M. Platt, Ashley M. Fowler & Terry J. Ord
The colonisation of new environments is a central evolutionary process, yet why species make such transitions often remains unknown because of the difficulty in empirically investigating potential mechanisms. The most likely explanation for transitions to new environments is that doing so conveys survival benefits, either in the form of an ecological release or new ecological opportunity. Life history theory makes explicit predictions about how traits linked to survival and reproduction should change with shifts in...

Data from: Mammalian engineers drive soil microbial communities and ecosystem functions across a disturbance gradient

David J. Eldridge, Manuel Delgado-Baquerizo, Jason N. Woodhouse & Brett A. Nielan
The effects of mammalian ecosystem engineers on soil microbial communities and ecosystem functions in terrestrial ecosystems are poorly known. Disturbance from livestock has been widely reported to reduce soil function, but disturbance by animals that forage in the soil may partially offset these negative effects of livestock, directly and/or indirectly by shifting the composition and diversity of soil microbial communities. Understanding the role of disturbance from livestock and ecosystem engineers in driving soil microbes and...

Registration Year

  • 2016

Resource Types

  • Dataset


  • UNSW Sydney
  • Max Planck Institute for Ornithology
  • University of Melbourne
  • University of Sydney
  • Western Sydney University
  • NSW Office of Environment & Heritage
  • Macquarie University
  • University of Zurich
  • Australian Museum
  • University of Tartu