134 Works

Data from: The effects of skeletal asymmetry on interpreting biological variation and taphonomy in the fossil record

Brandon P. Hedrick, Emma R. Schachner, Gabriel Rivera, Peter Dodson & Stephanie E. Pierce
Biological asymmetry is present in all bilaterally symmetric organisms as a result of normal developmental instability. However, fossilized organisms, which have undergone distortion due to burial, may have additional asymmetry as a result of taphonomic processes. To investigate this issue, we evaluated the magnitude of shape variation resulting from taphonomy on vertebrate bone using a novel application of fluctuating asymmetry. We quantified the amount of total variance attributed to asymmetry in a taphonomically distorted fossil...

Data from: The molecular biogeography of the Indo-Pacific: testing hypotheses with multispecies genetic patterns

Eric D. Crandall, Cynthia Riginos, Chris E. Bird, Libby Liggins, Eric Treml, Maria Beger, Paul H. Barber, Sean R. Connolly, Peter F. Cowman, Joseph D. Dibattista, Jeff A. Eble, Sharon F. Magnuson, John B. Horne, Marc Kochzius, Harilaos A. Lessios, Shang Yin Vanson Liu, William B. Ludt, Hawis Madduppa, John M. Pandolfi, Robert R. Toonen, Contributing Members Of Diversity Of The Indo-Pacific Network & Michelle R. Gaither
Aim: To test hypothesized biogeographic partitions of the tropical Indo-Pacific Ocean with phylogeographic data from 56 taxa, and to evaluate the strength and nature of barriers emerging from this test. Location: The Indo-Pacific Ocean. Time Period: Pliocene through the Holocene. Major Taxa Studied: 56 marine species. Methods: We tested eight biogeographic hypotheses for partitioning of the Indo-Pacific using a novel modification to analysis of molecular variance. Putative barriers to gene flow emerging from this analysis...

Inferring the mammal tree: Species-level sets of phylogenies for questions in ecology, evolution, and conservation

Nathan S. Upham, Jacob A. Esselstyn & Walter Jetz
Big, time-scaled phylogenies are fundamental to connecting evolutionary processes to modern biodiversity patterns. Yet inferring reliable phylogenetic trees for thousands of species involves numerous trade-offs that have limited their utility to comparative biologists. To establish a robust evolutionary timescale for all ~6000 living species of mammals, we developed credible sets of trees that capture root-to-tip uncertainty in topology and divergence times. Our ‘backbone-and-patch’ approach to tree-building applies a newly assembled 31-gene supermatrix to two levels...

Cave-adapted evolution in the North American Amblyopsid fishes inferred using phylogenomics and geometric morphometrics

Pamela Hart, Matthew Niemiller, Edward Burress, Jonathan Armbruster, William Ludt & Prosanta Chakrabarty
Cave adaptation has evolved repeatedly across the Tree of Life, famously leading to pigmentation and eye degeneration and loss, yet its macroevolutionary implications remain poorly understood. We use the North American amblyopsid fishes, a family spanning a wide degree of cave adaptation, to examine the impact of cave specialization on the modes and tempo of evolution. We reconstruct evolutionary relationships using ultraconserved element loci, estimate the ancestral histories of eye-state, and examine the impact of...

Data from: Combining transcriptomics and physiology to characterize plastic and evolved responses of Crassostrea virginica reared in common garden at two estuaries in the northern Gulf of Mexico

Kyle Sirovy, Kevin Johnson, Sandra Casas, Jerome La Peyre & Morgan Kelly
Eastern oysters in the northern Gulf of Mexico are facing rapid environmental changes and can respond to this change via plasticity or evolution. Plasticity can act as an immediate buffer against environmental change, but by buffering the effects of selection it could impact the organism’s ability to evolve in subsequent generations. While plasticity and evolution are not mutually exclusive, the relative contribution and interaction between them remains unclear. In this study, we investigate the roles...

Standardized nuclear markers improve and homogenize species delimitation in Metazoa

Lars Dietz, Jonas Eberle, Christoph Mayer, Sandra Kukowka, Claudia Bohacz, Hannes Baur, Marianne Espeland, Bernhard A. Huber, Carl Hutter, Ximo Mengual, Ralph S. Peters, Miguel Vences, Thomas Wesener, Keith Willmott, Bernhard Misof, Oliver Niehuis & Dirk Ahrens
Species are the fundamental units of life and their recognition is essential for science and society. DNA barcoding, the use of a single and often mitochondrial gene, has been increasingly employed as a universal approach for the identification of animal species. However, this approach faces several challenges. Here, we demonstrate with empiricalgenomic data from nine metazoan animal lineages including arthropods and 28 vertebrates that multiple nuclear-encoded markers, so called universal single-copy orthologs (USCOs) performs much...

Transgenerational plasticity and the capacity to adapt to low salinity in the eastern oyster, Crassostrea virginica

Joanna Griffiths, Kevin Johnson, Kyle Sirovy, Mark Yeats, Francis Pan, Jerome La Peyre & Morgan Kelly
Salinity conditions in oyster breeding grounds in the Gulf of Mexico are expected to drastically change due to increased precipitation from climate change and anthropogenic changes to local hydrology. We determined the capacity of the eastern oyster, Crassostrea virginica, to adapt via standing genetic variation or acclimate through transgenerational plasticity. We outplanted oysters to either a low or medium salinity site in Louisiana for two years. We then crossed adult parents using a North Carolina...

Data from: Paleoclimatic evolution as the main driver of current genomic diversity in the widespread and polymorphic Neotropical songbird Arremon taciturnus

Nelson Buainain, Roberta Canton, Gabriela Zuquim, Hanna Tuomisto, Tomas Hrbek, Hiromitsu Sato & Camila Ribas
Several factors have been proposed as drivers of species diversification in the Neotropics, including environmental heterogeneity, the development of drainage systems and historical changes in forest distribution due to climatic oscillations. Here, we investigate which drivers contributed to the evolutionary history and current patterns of diversity of a polymorphic songbird (Arremon taciturnus) that is widely distributed in Amazonian and Atlantic forests as well as in Cerrado gallery and seasonally-dry forests. We use genomic, phenotypic and...

Data from: Surf and Turf Vision: Patterns and predictors of visual acuity in compound eye evolution

Kathryn Feller, Lorian Schweikert, Camilla Sharkey, Alyssa McDuffee-Altekruse, Heather Bracken-Grissom, Nathan Lord & Megan Porter
Eyes have the flexibility to evolve to meet the ecological demands of their users. Relative to camera-type eyes, the fundamental limits of optical diffraction in arthropod compound eyes restricts the ability to resolve fine detail (visual acuity) to much lower degrees. We tested the capacity of several ecological factors to predict arthropod visual acuity, while simultaneously controlling for shared phylogenetic history. In this study, we have generated the most comprehensive review of compound eye visual...

No, you go first: phenotype and social context affect house sparrow neophobia

Tosha Kelly, Melanie Kimball, Keegan Stansberry & Christine Lattin
Novel object trials are commonly used to assess aversion to novelty (neophobia), and previous work has shown neophobia can be influenced by the social environment, but whether the altered behaviour persists afterwards (social learning) is largely unknown in wild animals. We assessed house sparrow (Passer domesticus) novel object responses before, during, and after being paired with a conspecific of either similar or different behavioral phenotype. During paired trials, animals housed with a similar or more...

Mississippi River Baton Rouge water quality

Robert Eugene Turner
We investigated how physical and chemical factors affect Chlorophyll a concentrations in the Mississippi River, the largest river in North America, by sampling 878 times from February 1997 to December 2018 near its terminus at Baton Rouge, Louisiana. Measured values included temperature, light (secchi disk), suspended sediments, and nutrients (nitrate+nitrite, phosphate, TP, TN, ammonium, silicate) that may affect phytoplankton communities. The data are available for unrestricted use.

Light and thermal niches of ground-foraging Amazonian insectivorous birds

Vitek Jirinec, Patricia Rodrigues, Bruna Amaral & Philip Stouffer
Insectivores of the tropical rainforest floor are consistently among the most vulnerable birds to forest clearing and fragmentation. Several hypotheses attempt to explain this pattern, including sensitivity to extreme microclimates found near forest borders—particularly brighter and warmer conditions. Importantly, this “microclimate hypothesis” has additional implications for intact forest under global climate change that could be evaluated through direct assessment of the light and temperature environment of terrestrial insectivores. In this study, we harness novel technology...

Morphological consequences of climate change for resident birds in intact Amazonian rainforest

Vitek Jirinec & Philip Stouffer
First, this dataset contains morphological measurements (body mass, wing length) of birds from the Biological Dynamics of Forest Fragments Project (BDFFP), located in central Amazonia. Birds were captured using mist-nets between 1979 and 2019 in the understory of primary forest spanning ~40 km. Second, we have included climate data (precipitation, temperature) associated with this study area derived from the global EU Copernicus ERA5 climate reanalysis (https://cds.climate.copernicus.eu).

Murine locomotion and diversification

Jonathan Nations
The relationship between organismal function and form is a cornerstone of biology because functional diversity is key to generating and maintaining ecological diversity. Morphological changes often occur in unison with behavioral or ecological transitions, and this process may foster diversification, but alternately could trap a species on an adaptive peak. We estimated the most comprehensive phylogenetic hypothesis of Murinae, a young (~15 My) and diverse (~700 species) clade of mammals. We then tested for correlated...

Data from: Differential responses to ocean acidification between populations of Balanophyllia elegans corals from high and low upwelling environments

Joanna S. Griffiths, Francis T. Pan & Morgan W. Kelly
Ocean acidification (OA), the global decrease in surface water pH from absorption of anthropogenic CO2, may put many marine taxa at risk. However, populations that experience extreme localized conditions, and are adapted to these conditions predicted in the global ocean in 2100, may be more tolerant to future OA. By identifying locally adapted populations, researchers can examine the mechanisms used to cope with decreasing pH. One oceanographic process that influences pH, is wind driven upwelling....

Data from: Biological evidence supports an early and complex emergence of the Isthmus of Panama

Christine D. Bacon, Daniele Silvestro, Carlos Jaramillo, Brian Tilston Smith, Prosanta Chakrabarty & Alexandre Antonelli
The formation of the Isthmus of Panama, which linked North and South America, is key to understanding the biodiversity, oceanography, atmosphere, and climate in the region. Despite its importance across multiple disciplines, the timing of formation and emergence of the Isthmus and the biological patterns it created have been controversial. Here, we analyze molecular and fossil data, including terrestrial and marine organisms, to show that biotic migrations across the Isthmus of Panama began several million...

Data from: Bottom-up trait-mediated indirect effects decrease pathogen transmission in a tritrophic system

Bret D. Elderd
A plant's induction of secondary defenses helps to decrease herbivore damage by changing resource quality. While these chemical or physical defenses may directly decrease herbivory, they can also have indirect consequences. In a tritrophic system consisting of a plant, an insect herbivore, and an insect pathogen, plant based trait-mediated indirect effects (TMIEs) can alter host-pathogen interactions and, thereby, indirectly affect disease transmission. In a series of field experiments, individual soybean plants (Glycine max) were sprayed...

Data from: Behavioral response to song and genetic divergence in two subspecies of white-crowned sparrows (Zonotrichia leucophrys)

Sara E. Lipshutz, Isaac A. Overcast, Michael J. Hickerson, Robb T. Brumfield & Elizabeth P. Derryberry
Divergence in sexual signals may drive reproductive isolation between lineages, but behavioral barriers can weaken in contact zones. Here, we investigate the role of song as a behavioral and genetic barrier in a contact zone between two subspecies of white-crowned sparrows (Zonotrichia leucophrys). We employed a reduced genomic dataset to assess population structure and infer the history underlying divergence, gene flow and hybridization. We also measured divergence in song and tested behavioral responses to song...

Data from: Spatiotemporal patterns of duck nest density and predation risk: a multi-scale analysis of 18 years and more than 10 000 nests

Kevin Ringelman, John M. Eadie, Joshua T. Ackerman, Andy Sih, Daniel L. Loughman, Gregory S. Yarris, Shaun L. Oldenburger, M. Robert McLandress, Kevin M. Ringelman & Andrew Sih
Many avian species are behaviorally-plastic in selecting nest sites, and may shift to new locations or habitats following an unsuccessful breeding attempt. If there is predictable spatial variation in predation risk, the process of many individuals using prior experience to adaptively change nest sites may scale up to create shifting patterns of nest density at a population level. We used 18 years of waterfowl nesting data to assess whether there were areas of consistently high...

Data from: Nonrandom, diversifying processes are disproportionately strong in the smallest size classes of a tropical forest

Peter T. Green, Kyle E. Harms & Joseph H. Connell
A variety of ecological processes influence diversity and species composition in natural communities. Most of these processes, whether abiotic or biotic, differentially filter individuals from birth to death, thereby altering species’ relative abundances. Nonrandom outcomes could accrue throughout ontogeny, or the processes that generate them could be particularly influential at certain stages. One long-standing paradigm in tropical forest ecology holds that patterns of relative abundance among mature trees are largely set by processes operating at...

Data from: Identifying biases at different spatial and temporal scales of diversification: a case study in the Neotropical parrotlet genus Forpus

Brian Tilston Smith, Camila C. Ribas, Bret M. Whitney, Blanca E. Hernández-Baños & John Klicka
The temporal origins of the extraordinary biodiversity of the Neotropical region are highly debated. Recent empirical work has found support for alternative models on the tempo of speciation in Neotropical species further fuelling the debate. However, relationships within many Neotropical lineages are poorly understood and it is unclear how this uncertainty impacts inferences on the evolution of taxa in the region. We examined the robustness of diversification patterns in the avian genus Forpus by testing...

Data from: The biogeography of sodium in Neotropical figs (Moraceae)

Adriana Bravo & Kyle E. Harms
Sodium is essential for animals but not for most plants. Terrestrial sodium comes largely from marine aerosols, so inland ecosystems should have greater potential for sodium limitation than coastal ecosystems. We report a significant decrease of sodium in fruits of four Neotropical Ficus species with distance from presumed marine source.

Data from: Investigating sensitivity of phylogenetic community structure metrics using North American desert bats

Lorelei E. Patrick & Richard D. Stevens
A relatively recent approach to characterizing structure of natural communities is to use phylogenies of species pools to compare patterns of relatedness between real and simulated communities. Such an approach can provide mechanistic insights into structure. Despite popularity of phylogenetic approaches, we do not yet fully understand how phylogenetic community structure (PCS) metrics might be impacted by changes to the phylogeny or community membership data from which they are calculated. We investigate metric sensitivity and...

Data from: Detection of implausible phylogenetic inferences using posterior predictive assessment of model fit

Jeremy M. Brown
Systematic phylogenetic error caused by the simplifying assumptions made in models of molecular evolution may be impossible to avoid entirely when attempting to model evolution across massive, diverse datasets. However, not all deficiencies of inference models result in unreliable phylogenetic estimates. The field of phylogenetics lacks a direct method to identify cases where model specification adversely affects inferences. Posterior predictive simulation is a flexible and intuitive approach for assessing goodness-of-fit of the assumed model and...

Comparing ultraconserved elements and exons for phylogenomic analyses of Middle American cichlids: When data agree to disagree

Fernando Alda, William B. Ludt, Diego J. Elías, Caleb D. McMahan & Prosanta Chakrabarty
Choosing among types of genomic markers to be used in a phylogenomic study can have a major influence on the cost, design, and results of a study. Yet few attempts have been made to compare categories of next-generation sequence markers limiting our ability to compare the suitability of these different genomic fragment types. Here we explore properties of different genomic markers to find if they vary in the accuracy of component phylogenetic trees and to...

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