Data from: Differential responses to related hosts by nesting and non-nesting parasites in a brood-parasitic duckKim Jaatinen, Markus Öst, Philip Gienapp & Juha Merilä
Host-parasite relatedness may facilitate the evolution of conspecific brood parasitism (CBP), but empirical support for this contention remains inconclusive. One reason for this disparity may relate to the diversity of parasitic tactics, a key distinguishing feature being whether the parasite has a nest of her own. Previous work suggests that parasites without nests of their own may be of inferior phenotypic quality, but due to difficulties in identifying these parasitic individuals, little is known about...
Data from: Galega orientalis is more diverse than Galega officinalis in Caucasus – whole-genome AFLP analysis and phylogenetics of symbiosis-related genesJanina Österman, Elena P. Chizhevskaja, Evgeny E. Andronov, David P. Fewer, Zewdu Terefework, Marina L. Roumiantseva, Olga P. Onichtchouk, Aneta Dresler-Nurmi, Boris V. Simarov, Nikolay I. Dzyubenko & Kristina Lindstrom
Legume plants can obtain combined nitrogen for their growth in an efficient way through symbiosis with specific bacteria. The symbiosis between Rhizobium galegae and its host plant Galega is an interesting case where the plant species G. orientalis and G. officinalis form effective, nitrogen fixing, symbioses only with the appropriate rhizobial counterpart, R. galegae bv. orientalis and R. galegae bv. officinalis respectively. There is plenty of information available on the symbiotic properties of nitrogen fixing...
Data from: Species introduction promotes hybridization and introgression in Coregonus: is there sign of selection against hybrids?Kimmo K Kahilainen, Kjartan Østbye, Chris Harrod, Takahito Shikano, Tommi Malinen & Juha Merilä
Species introductions are considered one of the major drivers of biodiversity loss via ecological interactions and genetic admixture with local fauna. We examined two well-recognized fish species, native whitefish (Coregonus lavaretus) and introduced vendace (C. albula), as well as their morphological hybrids in a single lake to test for selection against hybrids and backcrosses in the wild. A representative random subsample of 693 individuals (27.8%) was taken from the total catch of coregonids. This subsample...
Data from: Food makes you a target: disentangling genetic, physiological, and behavioral effects determining susceptibility to infectionOtto Seppälä, Anssi Karvonen, Maarit Haataja, Marja Kuosa & Jukka Jokela
Genetics, physiology and behavior are all expected to influence the susceptibility of hosts to parasites. Furthermore, interactions between genetic and other factors are suggested to contribute to the maintenance of genetic polymorphism in resistance when the relative susceptibility of host genotypes is context dependent. We used a maternal sibship design and long- and short-term food deprivation treatments to test the role of family-level genetic variation, body condition, physiological state and foraging behavior on the susceptibility...
Timing of reproduction in temperate zone birds is strongly correlated with spring temperature, with an earlier onset of breeding in warmer years. Females adjust their laying between years to be synchronized with local food sources and thereby optimize reproductive output. However, climate change currently disrupts the link between predictive environmental cues and spring phenology. To investigate direct effects of temperature on the decision to lay, and its genetic basis, we used pairs of Great Tits...
Data from: Random sperm use and genetic effects on worker caste fate in Atta colombica leaf-cutting antsLuke Holman, Marlene Stürup, Kalveti Trontti & Jacobus J. Boomsma
Sperm competition can produce fascinating adaptations with far-reaching evolutionary consequences. Social taxa make particularly interesting models, because the outcome of sexual selection determines the genetic composition of groups, with attendant sociobiological consequences. Here, we use molecular tools to uncover some of the mechanisms and consequences of sperm competition in the leaf-cutting ant Atta colombica, a species with extreme worker size polymorphism. Competitive PCR allowed quantification of the relative numbers of sperm stored by queens from...
Cope’s rule is the trend toward increasing body size in a lineage over geological time. The rule has been explained either as passive diffusion away from a small initial body size or as an active trend upheld by the ecological and evolutionary advantages that large body size confers. An explicit and phylogenetically informed analysis of body size evolution in Cenozoic mammals shows that body size increases significantly in most inclusive clades. This increase occurs through...
Data from: Brain plasticity over the metamorphic boundary: carry-over effect of larval environment on froglet brain developmentNina Trokovic, Abigél Gonda, Gábor Herczeg, Anssi Laurila & Juha Merilä
Brain development shows high plasticity in response to environmental heterogeneity. However, it is unknown how environmental variation during development may affect brain architecture across life history switch points in species with complex life cycles. Previously, we showed that predation and competition affect brain development in common frog (Rana temporaria) tadpoles. Here, we studied if larval environment had carry-over effects in brains of metamorphs. Tadpoles grown at high density had large optic tecta at metamorphosis, while...
Data from: Costs and benefits of polyandry in a placental poeciliid fish Heterandria formosa are in accordance with the parent-offspring conflict theory of placentationOuti Ala-Honkola, Emilia Friman & Kai Lindström
In viviparous species, a conflict over maternal resource allocation may arise between mothers and embryos, between siblings, and between maternal and paternal genes within an embryo due to relatedness asymmetries. We performed two experiments to study the effects of polyandry and brood relatedness on offspring growth in a placental fish (Heterandria formosa). Polyandry was beneficial as it increased the probability of pregnancy, possibly to avoid genetic incompatibility. However, females mated to four males produced offspring...
University of Helsinki9
Swiss Federal Institute of Aquatic Science and Technology1
Centre for Ecology and Hydrology1
All-Russian Research Institute of Agricultural Microbiology1
Nederlands Instituut voor Ecologie1
University of Edinburgh1
University of Oslo1
Åbo Akademi University1
University of Copenhagen1