51 Works

Data from: Candidate genes for colour and vision exhibit signals of selection across the pied flycatcher (Ficedula hypoleuca) breeding range

Paula K. Lehtonen, Toni Laaksonen, Aleksandr V. Artemyev, Eugen Belskii, Paul R. Berg, Christiaan Both, Laura Buggiotti, Stanislav Bureš, Malcolm D. Burgess, Andrey V. Bushuev, Indrikis Krams, Juan Moreno, Marko Mägi, Andreas Nord, Jaime Potti, Pierre-Alain Ravussin, Glenn Peter Sætre, Paivi Sirkiä, Wolfgang Winkel & Craig R. Primmer
The role of natural selection in shaping adaptive trait differentiation in natural populations has long been recognized. Determining its molecular basis, however, remains a challenge. Here, we search for signals of selection in candidate genes for colour and its perception in a passerine bird. Pied flycatcher plumage varies geographically in both its structural and pigment-based properties. Both characteristics appear to be shaped by selection. A single-locus outlier test revealed two of fourteen loci to exhibit...

Data from: Evolution of parental activity at the nest is shaped by the risk of nest predation and ambient temperature across bird species

Beata Matysiokova & Vladimir Remes
Incubation is an important component of parental care in birds and species differ widely in their incubation rhythm. In this comparative study we focused on factors responsible for those differences. As hypothesized by A. Skutch, increased parental activity at the nest increases the probability of nest depredation. High risk of nest predation should therefore lead to the evolution of lower frequency of parental activity at the nest. We thus expected to find a negative relationship...

Data from: Contagious fear: escape behaviour increases with flock size in European gregarious birds

Federico Morelli, Yanina Benedetti, Mario Diaz, Tomas Grim, Juan Ibáñez-Álamo, Jukka Jokimäki, Marja-Liisa Kaisanlahti-Jokimäki, Kunter Tätte, Gábor Markó, Yiting Jiang, Piotr Tryjanowski & Anders P. Møller
Flight initiation distance (FID), the distance at which individuals take flight when approached by a potential (human) predator, is a tool for understanding predator-prey interactions. Among the factors affecting FID, tests of effects of group size (i.e. number of potential prey) on FID have yielded contrasting results. Group size or flock size could either affect FID negatively (i.e. the dilution effect caused by the presence of many individuals) or positively (i.e. increased vigilance due to...

Data from: The evolution of parental cooperation in birds

Vladimír Remeš, Robert P. Freckleton, Jácint Tökölyi, András Liker & Tamás Székely
Parents in many animal species care for their offspring. In some species, males care more; in other species, females care more; in still other species, the contribution of the sexes is equal. However, we do not know what explains these differences among species. Using the most comprehensive analyses of parental care to date, here we show that parents cooperate more when sexual selection is not intense and the adult sex ratio of males to females...

Data from: Cross-fostering eggs reveals that female collared flycatchers adjust clutch sex ratios according to parental ability to invest in offspring

E. Keith Bowers, Pavel Munclinger, Stanislav Bureš, Petr Nádvorník, Lenka Kučerová & Miloš Krist
Across animal taxa, reproductive success is generally more variable and more strongly dependent upon body condition for males than for females; in such cases, parents able to produce offspring in above-average condition are predicted to produce sons, whereas parents unable to produce offspring in good condition should produce daughters. We tested this hypothesis in the collared flycatcher (Ficedula albicollis) by cross-fostering eggs among nests and using the condition of foster young that parents raised to...

Host-driven subspeciation in hedgehog fungus, Trichophyton erinacei, an emerging cause of human dermatophytosis

Adéla Čmoková, Miroslav Kolařík, Jacques Guillot, Veronica Risco-Castillo, Francisco Javier Cabañes, Pietro Nenoff, Silke Uhrlaß, Radim Dobiáš, Naďa Mallátová, Takashi Yaguchi, Rui Kano, Ivana Kuklová, Pavlína Lysková, Karel Mencl, Petr Hamal, Vit Hubka & Andrea Peano
Trichophyton erinacei is a main cause of dermatophytosis in hedgehogs and is increasingly reported from human infections worldwide. This pathogen was originally described in the European hedgehog (Erinaceus europaeus) but is also frequently found in the African four-toed hedgehog (Atelerix albiventris), a popular pet animal worldwide. Little is known about the taxonomy and population genetics of this pathogen despite its increasing importance in clinical practice. Notably, whether there are different populations or even cryptic species...

Data from: A full annual perspective on sex-biased migration timing in long-distance migratory birds

Martins Briedis, Silke Bauer, Peter Adamik, José A. Alves, Joana S. Costa, Tamara Emmenegger, Lars Gustafsson, Jaroslav Koleček, Felix Liechti, Christoph M. Meier, Petr Prochazka & Steffen Hahn
In many taxa, the most common form of sex-biased migration timing is protandry – the earlier arrival of males at breeding areas. Here we test this concept across the annual cycle of long-distance migratory birds. Using more than 350 migration tracks of small-bodied trans-Saharan migrants, we quantify differences in male and female migration schedules and test for proximate determinants of sex-specific timing. In spring, males on average departed from the African non-breeding sites about 3...

Data from: Survival to independence in relation to pre-fledging development and latitude in songbirds across the globe

Vladimír Remeš & Beata Matysioková
Species differ strongly in their life histories, including the probability of survival. Annual adult survival was investigated extensively in the past, whereas juvenile survival, and especially survival to independence, received much less attention. Yet, they are critical for our understanding of population demography and life-history evolution. We investigated post-fledging survival to independence (i.e. survival upon leaving the nest until nutritional independence) in 74 species of passerine birds worldwide based on 100 population level estimates extracted...

Data from: Egg discrimination along a gradient of natural variation in eggshell coloration

Daniel Hanley, Tomas Grim, Branislav Igic, Peter Samaš, Analía V. López, Matthew D. Shawkey & Mark E. Hauber
Accurate recognition of salient cues is critical for adaptive responses, but the underlying sensory and cognitive processes are often poorly understood. For example, hosts of avian brood parasites have long been assumed to reject foreign eggs from their nests based on the total degree of dissimilarity in colour to their own eggs, regardless of the foreign eggs' colours. We tested hosts' responses to gradients of natural (blue-green to brown) and artificial (green to purple) egg...

Data from: Paternity covaries with laying and hatching order in the collared flycatcher Ficedula albicollis

Miloš Krist, Petr Nádvorník, Lenka Uvírová & Stanislav Bureš
Females in most bird species engage in extra-pair copulations. Although this behaviour is widespread, benefits for females of doing so are less understood. The most widely accepted hypothesis is that they improve their previous choice of social partner and gain genetic benefits for their offspring. Some evidence for this comes from studies that find that extra-pair young (EPY) have greater fitness than their half-sibs. However, this might be also caused by maternal, non-genetic effect, a...

Data from: Context-dependence of maternal effects: testing assumptions of optimal egg size, differential- and sex-allocation models

Miloš Krist & Pavel Munclinger
If offspring develop in adverse conditions, the maternal component of their phenotypic variation might increase due to the stronger dependence of offspring traits on parental investment. This should result in increased parental investment to individual offspring, as assumed by the model of optimal egg size. The opposite pattern, i.e., stronger dependence of offspring fitness on parental investment and consequently larger parental investment under good conditions is assumed by both the theory of differential allocation if...

Data from: Female collared flycatchers choose neighbouring and older extra-pair partners from the pool of males around their nests

Anais Edme, Pavel Munclingwe, Miloš Krist & Pavel Munclinger
Extra-pair copulation is common among passerine birds. Females might engage in this behavior to obtain direct or indirect benefits. They may choose extra-pair males with larger ornaments, especially if they are costly to produce. Here we studied extra-pair paternity in the collared flycatcher. Genetic analysis allowed us to identify the presence or absence of extra-pair young in the focal nests, and to identify extra-pair fathers. We also identified potential males available as extra-pair sires around...

Data from: Nest predation in New Zealand songbirds: exotic predators, introduced prey and long-term changes in predation risk

Vladimír Remeš, Beata Matysioková & Andrew Cockburn
Predation is a major factor in ecology, evolution and conservation and thus its understanding is essential for insights into ecological processes and management of endangered populations of prey. Here we conducted a spatially (main island through to offshore islets) and temporally (1938-2005) extensive meta-analysis of published nest predation rates in New Zealand songbirds. We obtained information on nest predation rates from 79 populations (n = 4838 nests) of 26 species of songbirds belonging to 17...

Data from: Faithful females receive more help: the extent of male parental care during incubation in relation to extra-pair paternity in songbirds

Beata Matysioková & Vladimír Remeš
Parental care provided by males occurs in a diverse array of animals and there are large differences among species in its extent compared to female care. However, social and ecological factors responsible for interspecific differences in male’s share of parental duties remain unclear. Genetic fidelity of females has been long considered important. Theory predicts that females should receive more help from their mates in raising the offspring in species with high genetic fidelity. Using avian...

Data from: Moderate heritability and low evolvability of sperm morphology in a species with high risk of sperm competition, the collared flycatcher Ficedula albicollis

Anais Edme, Petr Zobač, Peter Korsten, Tomáš Albrecht, Tim Schmoll & Miloš Krist
Spermatozoa represent the morphologically most diverse type of animal cells and show remarkable variation in size across and also within species. To understand the evolution of this diversity, it is important to reveal to what degree this variation is genetic or environmental in origin and whether this depends on species’ life‐histories. Here we applied quantitative genetic methods to a pedigreed multigenerational data set of the collared flycatcher Ficedula albicollis, a passerine bird with high levels...

Integrating light-level geolocation with activity tracking reveals unexpected nocturnal migration patterns of the tawny pipit

Martins Briedis, Václav Beran, Peter Adamik & Steffen Hahn
Migratory birds complete their seasonal journeys between breeding and non-breeding sites with a series of migratory flights that are separated by prolonged stopovers. While songbirds are the most common taxa among migratory birds, empirical data on flight and stopover behaviour along their entire migratory journeys are still rare. Here, we integrate activity and barometric pressure tracking with classical light-level geolocation to describe migration behaviour of tawny pipits Anthus campestris breeding in Central Europe. Surprisingly, tracked...

Detailed description of the new genus and speceis, Cretophengodes azari Li, Kundrata, Tihelka and Cai sp. nov.

Yan-Da Li, Robin Kundrata, Erik Tihelka, Zhenhua Liu, Diying Huang & Chenyang Cai
Bioluminescent beetles of the superfamily Elateroidea (fireflies, fire beetles, glow-worms) are the most speciose group of terrestrial light-producing animals. The evolution of bioluminescence in elateroids is associated with unusual morphological modifications, such as soft-bodiedness and neoteny, but the fragmentary nature of the fossil record discloses little about the origin of these adaptations. We report the discovery of a new bioluminescent elateroid beetle family from the mid-Cretaceous of northern Myanmar (ca. 99 Ma), Cretophengodidae fam. nov....

Evolution of a multifunctional trait: shared effects of foraging ecology and thermoregulation on beak morphology, with consequences for song evolution

Nicholas R. Friedman, Eliot T. Miller, Jason R. Ball, Haruka Kasuga, Vladimír Remeš & Evan P. Economo
While morphological traits are often associated with multiple functions, it remains unclear how evolution balances the selective effects of different functions. Birds' beaks function in foraging, but also in thermoregulating and singing, among other behaviours. Studies of beak evolution abound, however most focus on a single function. Thus, we quantified relative contributions of different functions over an evolutionary time scale. We measured beak shape using geometric morphometrics and compared this trait to foraging behaviour, climatic...

Data from: Competition-driven niche segregation on a landscape scale: evidence for escaping from syntopy toward allotopy in two coexisting sibling passerine species

Jiří Reif, Radka Reifova, Anna Skoracka & Lechosław Kuczyński
1. The role of interspecific competition for generating patterns in species’ distribution is hotly debated and studies taking into account processes occurring at both large and small spatial scales are almost missing. Theoretically, competition between species with overlapping niches should result in divergence of their niches in sympatry to reduce the costs of competition. Many species show a mosaic distribution within sympatric zones, with the syntopic sites occupied by both species, and allotopic sites where...

Data from: Suppressing competitive dominants and community restoration with native parasitic plants using the hemiparasitic Rhinanthus alectorolophus and the dominant grass Calamagrostis epigejos

Jakub Těšitel, Jan Mladek, Jan Horník, Tamara Těšitelová, Vojtěch Adamec & Lubomír Tichý
1. Dominance of native or alien competitive plants causes competitive exclusion of subordinate species and represents a major mechanism reducing biodiversity following land-use changes. The successful competitive strategies may however be interfered with by parasitic plants, which withdraw resources from other plants’ vasculature. Parasitism may strongly reduce the growth of the dominants, which may facilitate regeneration of other species and consequently trigger restoration of natural communities of high diversity. 2. Here, we aim to provide...

Data from: Not so colourful after all: eggshell pigments constrain avian eggshell colour space

Daniel Hanley, Tomáš Grim, Phillip Cassey & Mark E. Hauber
Birds' eggshells are renowned for their striking colours and varied patterns. Although often considered exceptionally diverse, we report that avian eggshell coloration, sampled here across the full phylogenetic diversity of birds, occupies only 0.08–0.10% of the avian perceivable colour space. The concentrations of the two known tetrapyrrole eggshell pigments (protoporphyrin and biliverdin) are generally poor predictors of colour, both intra- and interspecifically. Here, we show that the constrained diversity of eggshell coloration can be accurately...

Data from: Evidence of extreme habitat stability in a Southeast Asian biodiversity hotspot based on the evolutionary analysis of neotenic net-winged beetles

Ladislav Bocak & Vladimir Malohlava
The diversification of neotenic beetle lineages has not been studied, despite the potential for defining biodiversity hotspots and elucidating the history of regional faunas. Additionally, neotenics may provide insight into the process of speciation in small populations with extremely low dispersal ability and a limited range. Here, we used two rDNA and three mtDNA markers to investigate the phylogeny of Scarelus, a neotenic lineage endemic to Southeast Asian rainforests. Most genetic differentiation was associated with...

Data from: Egg size and offspring performance in the collared flycatcher (Ficedula albicollis): a within-clutch approach

Miloš Krist, Vladimír Remeš, Lenka Uvírová, Petr Nádvorník & Stanislav Bureš
Adaptive within-clutch allocation of resources by laying females is an important focus of evolutionary studies. However, the critical assumption of these studies, namely that within-clutch egg-size deviations affect offspring performance, has been properly tested only rarely. In this study, we investigated effects of within-clutch deviations in egg size on nestling survival, weight, fledgling condition, structural size and offspring recruitment to the breeding population in the collared flycatcher (Ficedula albicollis). Besides egg-size effects, we also followed...

Data from: Paternity covaries with laying and hatching order in the collared flycatcher Ficedula albicollis

Miloš Krist, Petr Nádvorník, Lenka Uvírová & Stanislav Bureš
Females in most bird species engage in extra-pair copulations. Although this behaviour is widespread, benefits for females of doing so are less understood. The most widely accepted hypothesis is that they improve their previous choice of social partner and gain genetic benefits for their offspring. Some evidence for this comes from studies that find that extra-pair young (EPY) have greater fitness than their half-sibs. However, this might be also caused by maternal, non-genetic effect, a...

Data from: Are blue eggs a sexually selected signal of female collared flycatchers? A cross-fostering experiment

Miloš Krist & Tomáš Grim
Impressive variation in egg colouration among birds has puzzled evolutionary biologists for a long time. The most frequently studied selective forces moulding egg colouration – predation and brood parasitism – have either received little empirical support or may play a role in only a minority of species. A novel hypothesis has suggested that egg colour may be significantly influenced by sexual selection. Females may deposit a blue-green pigment biliverdin into eggshells instead of using it...

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