127 Works

Data from: Latitudinal clines in alternative life histories in a geometrid moth

Panu Välimäki, Sami M. Kivelä, Maarit I. Mäenpää & Toomas Tammaru
The relative roles of genetic differentiation and developmental plasticity in generating latitudinal gradients in life histories remain insufficiently understood. In particular, this applies to determination of voltinism (annual number of generations) in short-lived ectotherms, and the associated trait values. We studied different components of variation in development of Chiasmia clathrata (Lepidoptera: Geometridae) larvae that originated from populations expressing univoltine, partially bivoltine or bivoltine phenology along a latitudinal gradient of season length. Indicative of population-level genetic...

Data from: Plant species richness belowground: higher richness and new patterns revealed by next generation sequencing

Inga Hiiesalu, Maarja Öpik, Madis Metsis, Liisa Lilje, John Davison, Martti Vasar, Mari Moora, Martin Zobel, Scott D. Wilson & Meelis Pärtel
Variation in plant species richness has been described using only aboveground vegetation. The species richness of roots and rhizomes has never been compared with aboveground richness in natural plant communities. We made direct comparisons of grassland plant richness in identical volumes (0.1x0.1x0.1m) above and below the soil surface, using conventional species identification to measure aboveground richness and 454 sequencing of the chloroplast trnL(UAA) intron to measure belowground richness. Sequencing detected most species expected and only...

Data from: Genetic and life-history changes associated with fisheries-induced population collapse

Lilian Pukk, Anna Kuparinen, Leili Järv, Riho Gross & Anti Vasemägi
Over the recent years, growing number of studies suggests that intensive size-selective fishing can cause evolutionary changes in life-history traits in the harvested population, which can have drastic negative effects on populations, ecosystems and fisheries. However, most studies to date have overlooked the potential role of immigration of fish with different phenotypes as an alternative plausible mechanism behind observed phenotypic trends. Here, we investigated the evolutionary consequences of intensive fishing simultaneously at phenotypic and molecular...

Data from: The reciprocal relationship between competition and intraspecific trait variation

Jonathan A. Bennett, Kersti Riibak, Riin Tamme, Rob J. Lewis & Meelis Pärtel
Trait differences among plants are expected to influence the outcome of competition; competition should be strongest between similar species (or individuals) under limiting similarity, and between dissimilar species within competitive hierarchies. These hypotheses are often used to infer competitive dynamics from trait patterns within communities. However, plant traits are frequently plastic in response to competition. This variation is poorly accounted for in trait-based studies of competition and community assembly. To explore the relationship between trait...

Data from: Causal link between insulin-like growth factor 1 and growth in nestlings of a wild passerine bird

Jaanis Lodjak, Marko Mägi, Elin Sild & Raivo Mänd
Life history of animals is strongly linked with the variability in postnatal growth rates, because the ability to achieve necessary body mass early in life is directly connected with the ability to survive and reproduce later in life. Surprisingly, little is known about the physiological mechanisms connecting food availability with the variability of growth in wild animals. We used a hormonal injection treatment in free-living nestlings of the pied flycatcher (Ficedula hypoleuca). In doing this,...

Data from: Reproductive behaviour indicates specificity in resource use: phylogenetic examples from temperate and tropical insects

Sille Holm, Juhan Javoiš, Erki Õunap, Robert B. Davis, Ants Kaasik, Freerk Molleman, Tõnis Tasane & Toomas Tammaru
Specificity (= the degree of ecological specialisation) is one of the fundamental concepts of the science of ecology. Ambiguities on how to define and measure specificity have however complicated respective research efforts. Here we propose that, in insects, a behavioural trait –adult oviposition latency in captivity without a favourable host plant – correlates with a species’ specificity in larval host use. In the absence of a suitable host, monophagous insects are expected to wait for...

Data from: Microbiome symbionts and diet diversity incur costs on the immune system of insect larvae

Indrikis Krams, Sanita Kecko, Priit Jõers, Giedrius Trakimas, Didzis Elferts, Ronalds Krams, Severi Luoto, Markus J. Rantala, Inna Inashkina, Dita Gudrā, Dāvids Fridmanis, Jorge Contreras-Garduño, Lelde Grantiņa-Ieviņa & Tatjana Krama
Communities of symbiotic microorganisms that colonize the gastrointestinal tract play an important role in food digestion and protection against opportunistic microbes. Diet diversity increases the number of symbionts in the intestines, a benefit that is considered to impose no cost for the host organism. However, less is known about the possible immunological investments that hosts have to make in order to control the infections caused by symbiont populations that increase due to diet diversity. By...

Data from: Potential contributions of root decomposition to the nitrogen cycle in arctic forest and tundra

Sabrina Träger, Ann Milbau & Scott D. Wilson
1. Plant contributions to the nitrogen (N) cycle from decomposition are likely to be altered by vegetation shifts associated with climate change. Roots account for the majority of soil organic matter input from vegetation, but little is known about differences between vegetation types in their root contributions to nutrient cycling. Here, we examine the potential contribution of fine roots to the N cycle in forest and tundra to gain insight into belowground consequences of the...

Data from: PROTAX-fungi: a web-based tool for probabilistic taxonomic placement of fungal ITS sequences

Kessy Abarenkov, Panu Somervuo, R. Henrik Nilsson, Paul M. Kirk, Tea Huotari, Nerea Abrego & Otso Ovaskainen
• Incompleteness of reference sequence databases and unresolved taxonomic relationships complicates taxonomic placement of fungal sequences. We developed PROTAX-fungi, a general tool for taxonomic placement of fungal ITS sequences, and implemented it into the PlutoF platform of the UNITE database for molecular identification of fungi. • PROTAX-fungi outperformed the SINTAX and RDB classifiers in terms of increased accuracy and decreased calibration error when applied to data on mock communities representing species groups with poor sequence...

Data from: Independent and interactive effects of immune activation and larval diet on adult immune function, growth and development in the greater wax moth (Galleria mellonella)

Katariina Kangassalo, Terhi M. Valtonen, Jouni Sorvari, Sanita Kecko, Mari Pölkki, Indrikis Krams, Tatjana Krama & Markus J. Rantala
Organisms in the wild are likely to face multiple immune challenges as well as additional ecological stressors, yet their interactive effects on immune function are poorly understood. Insects are found to respond to cues of increased infection risk by enhancing their immune capacity. However, such adaptive plasticity in immune function may be limited by physiological and environmental constraints. Here, we investigated the effects of two environmental stressors – poor larval diet and an artificial parasite-like...

Data from: Disentangling the processes driving plant assemblages in mountain grasslands across spatial scales and environmental gradients

Daniel Scherrer, Heidi K. Mod, Julien Pottier, Anne Dubuis-Litsios, Loïc Pellissier, Pascal Vittoz, Lars Götzenberger, Martin Zobel & Antoine Guisan
Habitat filtering and limiting similarity are well‐documented ecological assembly processes that hierarchically filter species across spatial scales, from a regional pool to local assemblages. However, information on the effects of fine‐scale spatial partitioning of species, working as an additional mechanism of coexistence, on community patterns is much scarcer. In this study, we quantified the importance of fine‐scale spatial partitioning, relative to habitat filtering and limiting similarity in structuring grassland communities in the western Swiss Alps....

Data from: Nematode community responses to range-expanding and native plant communities in original and new range soils

Rutger A. Wilschut, Olga Kostenko, Kadri Koorem & Wim H. Van Der Putten
Many plant species expand their range to higher latitudes in response to climate change. However, it is poorly understood how biotic interactions in the new range differ from interactions in the original range. Here, in a mesocosm experiment, we analyze nematode community responses in original and new range soils to plant communities with either 1) species native in both the original and new range, 2) range-expanding species related to these natives (related range-expanders), or 3)...

Environmental drivers of Sphagnum growth in peatlands across the Holarctic region

Fia Bengtsson, Håkan Rydin, Jennifer Baltzer, Luca Bragazza, Zhao-Jun Bu, Simon Caporn, Ellen Dorrepaal, Kjell Ivar Flatberg, Olga Galanina, Mariusz Gałka, Anna Ganeva, Irina Goia, Nadezhda Goncharova, Michal Hajek, Akira Haraguchi, Lorna Harris, Elyn Humphreys, Martin Jiroušek, Katarzyna Kajukało, Edgar Karofeld, Natalia Koronatova, Natalia Kosykh, Anna Laine, Mariusz Lamentowicz, Elena Lapshina … & Richard J. Payne
The relative importance of global versus local environmental factors for growth and thus carbon uptake of the bryophyte genus Sphagnum – the main peat-former and ecosystem engineer in northern peatlands – remains unclear. 2) We measured length growth and net primary production (NPP) of two abundant Sphagnum species across 99 Holarctic peatlands. We tested the importance of previously proposed abiotic and biotic drivers for peatland carbon uptake (climate, N deposition, water table depth, and vascular...

Phenological responses to climate warming in temperate moths and butterflies: species traits predict future changes in voltinism

Tiit Teder
Changes in the number of generations per year (voltinism) have been among the most common phenological responses to climate warming in insects inhabiting seasonal environments. Nevertheless, numerous species have maintained univoltine (one generation per year) phenology with increasing temperatures, indicating the involvement of phylogenetic, ecological or some other constraints on phenological change. I examined geographic variation in voltinism in moths and butterflies of Northern Europe to identify species traits that might predispose species to univoltine/multivoltine...

Comparative analysis of larval growth in Lepidoptera reveals instar-level constraints

Sami Kivelä, Robert Davis, Toomas Esperk, Karl Gotthard, Marko Mutanen, Daniel Valdma & Toomas Tammaru
1. Juvenile growth trajectories evolve via the interplay of selective pressures on age and size at maturity, and developmental constraints. In insects, the moulting cycle is a major constraint on larval growth trajectories. 2. Surface area to volume ratio of a larva decreases during growth, so renewal of certain surfaces by moulting is likely needed for the maintenance of physiological efficiency. A null hypothesis of isometry, implied by Dyar’s Rule, would mean that the relative...

Current climate overrides historical effects on species richness and range size of freshwater plants in Europe and North America

Janne Alahuhta, Harri Antikainen, Jan Hjort, Aveliina Helm & Jani Heino
1. The latitudinal diversity gradient (LDG) hypothesis suggests that species richness should be highest at low latitudes, whereas Rapoport’s rule states that largest ranges ought to be found for species at high latitudes. However, there is no consensus over these patterns and their underlying drivers in the freshwater realm. 2. We investigated species richness and mean range size of freshwater plants in 50 km × 50 km grid cells across Europe (40°N to 71°N) and...

The roles of temperature, nest predators and information parasites for geographical variation in egg covering behaviour of tits (Paridae)

Olli Loukola, Peter Adamik, Frank Adriaensen, Emilio Barba, Blandine Doligez, Einar Flensted-Jensen, Tapio Eeva, Sami Kivelä, Toni Laaksonen, Chiara Morosinotto, Raivo Mänd, Petri Niemelä, Vladimir Remeš, Jelmer Samplonius, Manrico Sebastiano, Juan Carlos Senar, Tore Slagsvold, Alberto Sorace, Barbara Tschirren, János Török & Jukka Forsman
Aim: Nest building is widespread among animals. Nests may provide receptacles for eggs, developing offspring and the parents, and protect them from adverse environmental conditions. Nests may also indicate the quality of the territory and its owner and can be considered as an extended phenotype of its builder(s). Nests may, thus, function as a sexual and social signal. Here, we examined ecological and abiotic factors—temperature, nest predation and interspecific information utilization—shaping geographical variation in a...

European soil seed bank communities across a climate and land-cover gradient

Jan Plue, Hans Van Calster, Inger Auestad, Sofia Basto, Reneé M. Bekker, Hans Henrik Bruun, Richard Chevalier, Guillaume Decocq, Ulf Grandin, Martin Hermy, Hans Jacquemyn, Anna Jakobsson, Rein Kalamees, Rob H. Marrs, Bryndis Marteinsdóttir, Per Milberg, Robin J. Pakeman, Gareth Phoenix, Ken Thompson, Vigdis Vandvik, Markus Wagner, Sara A.O. Cousins, Ove Eriksson, Jamshid Ghorbani, Małgorzata Jankowska-Błaszczuk … & Alistair G. Auffret
This is the data set used for the publication Buffering effects of soil seed banks on plant community composition in response to land use and climate, published in the journal Global Ecology and Biogeography. Aim. Climate and land use are key determinants of biodiversity, with past and ongoing changes posing serious threats to global ecosystems. Unlike most other organism groups, plant species can possess dormant life-history stages such as soil seed banks, which may help...

Global biogeography of fungal and bacterial biomass carbon in topsoil

Liyuan He, Jorge Rodrigues, Nadejda Soudzilovskaia, Milagros Barceló, Pål Axel Olsson, Changchun Song, Leho Tedersoo, Fenghui Yuan, Fengming Yuan, David Lipson & Xiaofeng Xu
Bacteria and fungi, representing two major soil microorganism groups, play an important role in global nutrient biogeochemistry. Biogeographic patterns of bacterial and fungal biomass are of fundamental importance for mechanistically understanding nutrient cycling. We synthesized 1323 data points of phospholipid fatty acid-derived fungal biomass C (FBC), bacterial biomass C (BBC), and fungi:bacteria (F:B) ratio in topsoil, spanning 11 major biomes. The FBC, BBC, and F:B ratio display clear biogeographic patterns along latitude and environmental gradients...

Including intraspecific trait variability to avoid distortion of functional diversity and ecological inference: lessons from natural assemblages

Carlos Carmona & Mark K. L. Wong
1. Functional diversity assessments are crucial and increasingly used for understanding ecological processes and managing ecosystems. The functional diversity of a community is assessed by sampling traits at one or more scales (individuals, populations, species) and calculating a summary index of the variation in trait values. However, it remains unclear how the scale at which traits are sampled and the indices used to estimate functional diversity may alter the patterns observed and inferences about ecological...

High blood parasite infection rate and low fitness suggest ecological traps for pied flycatchers breeding near forest water-bodies

Indrikis Krams
Blood parasites are considered to have strong negative effects on host fitness. There is some evidence that suggests that negative fitness consequences may be associated with the proximity to the areas where blood parasite vectors reproduce. This study tested for relationships between haemosporidian infection prevalence and parasitemia of breeding pied flycatchers (Ficedula hypoleuca) and their fitness parameters at different distances from forest water bodies. Prevalence and parasitemias (the intensity of infection) of haemosporidians generally decreased...

Data from: Sensitivity to habitat fragmentation across European landscapes in three temperate forest herbs

Tobias Naaf, Jannis Till Feigs, Siyu Huang, Jörg Brunet, Sara A. O. Cousins, Guillaume Decocq, Pieter De Frenne, Martin Diekmann, Sanne Govaert, Per-Ola Hedwall, Kenny Helsen, Jonathan Lenoir, Jaan Liira, Camille Meeussen, Jan Plue, Pedro Poli, Fabien Spicher, Pieter Vangansbeke, Thomas Vanneste, Kris Verheyen, Stephanie I. J. Holzhauer & Katja Kramp
Context. Evidence for effects of habitat loss and fragmentation on the viability of temperate forest herb populations in agricultural landscapes is so far based on population genetic studies of single species in single landscapes. However, forest herbs differ in their life histories, and landscapes have different environments, structures and histories, making generalizations difficult. Objectives. We compare the response of three slow-colonizing forest herbs to habitat loss and fragmentation and set this in relation to differences...

Data from: Context matters: the landscape matrix determines the population genetic structure of temperate forest herbs across Europe

Tobias Naaf, Jannis Till Feigs, Siyu Huang, Jörg Brunet, Sara A. O. Cousins, Guillaume Decocq, Pieter De Frenne, Martin Diekmann, Sanne Govaert, Per-Ola Hedwall, Jonathan Lenoir, Jaan Liira, Camille Meeussen, Jan Plue, Pieter Vangansbeke, Thomas Vanneste, Kris Verheyen, Stephanie I. J. Holzhauer & Katja Kramp
Context. Plant populations in agricultural landscapes are mostly fragmented and their functional connectivity often depends on seed and pollen dispersal by animals. However, little is known about how the interactions of seed and pollen dispersers with the agricultural matrix translate into gene flow among plant populations. Objectives. We aimed to identify effects of the landscape structure on the genetic diversity within, and the genetic differentiation among, spatially isolated populations of three temperate forest herbs. We...

Data from: Generation of a neutral FST baseline for testing local adaptation on gill-raker number within and between European whitefish ecotypes in the Baltic Sea basin

Mikhail Yu Ozerov, Mikael Himberg, Tutku Aykanat, Dmitry S. Sendek, Henry Hägerstrand, Aare Verliin, Teet Krause, Jens Olsson, Craig R. Primmer & Anti Vasemägi
Divergent selection at ecologically important traits is thought to be a major factor driving phenotypic differentiation between populations. To elucidate the role of different evolutionary processes shaping the variation in gill-raker number of European whitefish (Coregonus lavaretus sensu lato) in the Baltic Sea basin, we assessed the relationships between genetic and phenotypic variation among and within three whitefish ecotypes (sea-, river and lake-spawners). To generate expected neutral distribution of FST and to evaluate whether highly...

Data from: Temporal variation of Bistorta vivipara-associated ectomycorrhizal fungal communities in the High Arctic

Sunil Mundra, Mohammad Bahram, Leho Tedersoo, Håvard Kauserud, Rune Halvorsen, Pernille Eidesen & Pernille Bronken Eidesen
Ectomycorrhizal (ECM) fungi are important for efficient nutrient uptake of several widespread arctic plant species. Knowledge of temporal variation of ECM fungi, and the relationship of these patterns to environmental variables, is essential to understand energy and nutrient cycling in Arctic ecosystems. We sampled roots of Bistorta vivipara ten times over two years; three times during the growing-season (June, July and September) and twice during winter (November and April) of both years. We found 668...

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