The nutrient demands of regrowing tropical forests are partly satisfied by nitrogen (N)-fixing legume trees, but our understanding of the abundance of those species is biased towards wet tropical regions. Here we show how the abundance of Leguminosae is affected by both recovery from disturbance and large-scale rainfall gradients through a synthesis of forest-inventory plots from a network of 42 Neotropical forest chronosequences. During the first three decades of natural forest regeneration, legume basal area...
Changes in stream food web structure across a gradient of acid mine drainage increases local community stabilityJustin Pomeranz, Jeff Wesner & Jon Harding
Understanding what makes food webs stable has long been a goal of ecologists. Topological structure and the distribution and magnitude of interaction strengths in food webs have been shown to confer important stabilizing properties. However, our understanding of how variable species interactions affect food web structure and stability is still in its infancy. Anthropogenic stress, such as acid mine drainage, is likely to place severe limitations on the food web structures possible due to changes...
Data from: Resilience of tropical dry forests – a meta-analysis of changes in species diversity and composition during secondary successionGéraldine Derroire, Patricia Balvanera, Carolina Castellanos-Castro, Guillaume Decocq, Deborah K. Kennard, Edwin Lebrija-Trejos, Jorge A. Leiva, Per-Christer Odén, Jennifer S. Powers, Víctor Rico-Gray, Mulualem Tigabu & John R. Healey
Assessing the recovery of species diversity and composition after major disturbance is key to understanding the resilience of tropical forests through successional processes, and its importance for biodiversity conservation. Despite the specific abiotic environment and ecological processes of tropical dry forests, secondary succession has received less attention in this biome than others and changes in species diversity and composition have never been synthesised in a systematic and quantitative review. This study aims to assess in...
Data from: Intraspecific phytochemical variation shapes community and population structure for specialist caterpillarsAndrea E. Glassmire, Christopher S. Jeffrey, Matthew L. Forister, Thomas L. Parchman, Chris C. Nice, Joshua P. Jahner, Joseph S. Wilson, Thomas R. Walla, Lora A. Richards, Angela M. Smilanich, Michael D. Leonard, Colin R. Morrison, Wilmer Simbaña, Luis A. Salagaje, Craig D. Dodson, Jim S. Miller, Eric J. Tepe, Santiago Villamarin-Cortez & Lee A. Dyer
Chemically mediated plant–herbivore interactions contribute to the diversity of terrestrial communities and the diversification of plants and insects. While our understanding of the processes affecting community structure and evolutionary diversification has grown, few studies have investigated how trait variation shapes genetic and species diversity simultaneously in a tropical ecosystem. We investigated secondary metabolite variation among subpopulations of a single plant species, Piper kelleyi (Piperaceae), using high-performance liquid chromatography (HPLC), to understand associations between plant phytochemistry...
Data from: Environmental gradients and the evolution of successional habitat specialization: a test case with 14 Neotropical forest sitesSusan G. Letcher, Jesse R. Lasky, Robin L. Chazdon, Natalia Norden, S. Joseph Wright, Jorge A. Meave, Eduardo A. Pérez-García, Rodrigo Muñoz, Eunice Romero-Pérez, Ana Andrade, José Luis Andrade, Patricia Balvanera, Justin M. Becknell, Tony V. Bentos, Radika Bhaskar, Frans Bongers, Vanessa Boukili, Pedro H. S. Brancalion, Ricardo G. César, Deborah A. Clark, David B. Clark, Dylan Craven, Alexander DeFrancesco, Juan M. Dupuy, Bryan Finegan … & G. Bruce Williamson
1. Successional gradients are ubiquitous in nature, yet few studies have systematically examined the evolutionary origins of taxa that specialize at different successional stages. Here we quantify successional habitat specialization in Neotropical forest trees and evaluate its evolutionary lability along a precipitation gradient. Theoretically, successional habitat specialization should be more evolutionarily conserved in wet forests than in dry forests due to more extreme microenvironmental differentiation between early and late successional stages in wet forest. 2....
Data from: Host conservatism, geography, and elevation in the evolution of a Neotropical moth radiationJoshua P. Jahner, Matthew L. Forister, Thomas L. Parchman, Angela M. Smilanich, James S. Miller, Joseph S. Wilson, Thomas R. Walla, Eric J. Tepe, Lora A. Richards, Mario A. Quijano-Abril, Andrea E. Glassmire & Lee A. Dyer
The origins of evolutionary radiations are often traced to the colonization of novel adaptive zones, including unoccupied habitats or unutilized resources. For herbivorous insects, the predominant mechanism of diversification is typically assumed to be a shift onto a novel lineage of host plants. However, other drivers of diversification are important in shaping evolutionary history, especially for groups residing in regions with complex geological histories. We evaluated the contributions of shifts in host plant clade, bioregion,...
Land-use change occurs nowhere more rapidly than in the tropics, where the imbalance between deforestation and forest regrowth has large consequences for the global carbon cycle1. However, considerable uncertainty remains about the rate of biomass recovery in secondary forests, and how these rates are influenced by climate, landscape, and prior land use2, 3, 4. Here we analyse aboveground biomass recovery during secondary succession in 45 forest sites and about 1,500 forest plots covering the major...
Data from: Vegetation response to control of invasive Tamarix in southwestern US rivers: a collaborative study including 416 sitesEduardo González, Anna A. Sher, Robert M. Anderson, Robin F. Bay, Daniel W. Bean, Gabriel J. Bissonnete, Bérenger Bourgeois, David J. Cooper, Kara Dohrenwend, Kim D. Eichhorst, Hisham El Waer, Deborah K. Kennard, Rebecca Harms-Weissinger, Annie L. Henry, Lori J. Makarick, Steven M. Ostoja, Lindsay V. Reynolds, W. Wright Robinson & Patrick B. Shafroth
Most studies assessing vegetation response following control of invasive Tamarix trees along southwestern U.S. rivers have been small in scale (e.g., river reach), or at a regional scale but with poor spatial-temporal replication, and most have not included testing the effects of a now widely-used biological control. We monitored plant composition following Tamarix control along hydrologic, soil and climatic gradients in 244 treated and 172 reference sites across six U.S. States. This represents the largest...
Evolutionary variation in MADS-box dimerization affects floral development and protein abundance in maizeMadelaine Bartlett, Jazmin Abraham-Juarez & Amanda Schrager-Lavelle
Interactions between MADS-box transcription factors are critical in the regulation of floral development, and shifting MADS-box protein-protein interactions are predicted to have influenced floral evolution. However, precisely how evolutionary variation in protein-protein interactions affects MADS-box protein function remains unknown. To assess the impact of changing MADS-box protein-protein interactions on transcription factor function, we turned to the grasses, where interactions between B-class MADS-box proteins vary. We tested the functional consequences of this evolutionary variability using maize...
Data from: Tropical understory herbaceous community responds more strongly to hurricane disturbance than to experimental warmingDeborah Kennard, David Matlaga, Joanne Sharpe, Clay King, Aura Alonso-Rodríguez, Sasha Reed, Molly Cavaleri & Tana Wood
The effects of climate change on tropical forests may have global consequences due to the forests’ high biodiversity and major role in the global carbon cycle. In this study, we document the effects of experimental warming on the abundance and composition of a tropical forest floor herbaceous plant community in the Luquillo Experimental Forest, Puerto Rico. This study was conducted within Tropical Responses to Altered Climate Experiment (TRACE) plots, which use infrared heaters under free-air,...
Colorado Mesa University10
University of Minnesota4
National Autonomous University of Mexico3
University of Connecticut3
Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute3
University of Sao Paulo3
Federal University of Southern Bahia2
Utah State University2
Museu Paraense Emílio Goeldi2