30 Works

NanoString nCounter copy number variation assay

Thea Rogers & Alison Wright
The sex chromosomes often follow unusual evolutionary trajectories. In particular, the sex-limited Y and W chromosomes frequently exhibit a small but unusual gene content in numerous species, where many genes have undergone massive gene amplification. The reasons for this remain elusive with a number of recent studies implicating meiotic drive, sperm competition, genetic drift and gene conversion in the expansion of gene families. However, our understanding is primarily based on Y chromosome studies, and the...

Testing the effectiveness of the Forest Integrity Assessment: A field-based tool for estimating the condition of tropical forest

Andrew Suggitt, Kok Yeong, Anders Lindhe, Agnes Agama, Keith Hamer, Glen Reynolds, Jane Hill & Jennifer Lucey
1. Global targets to halt biodiversity losses and mitigate climate change will require protecting rainforest beyond current protected area networks, necessitating responsible forest stewardship from a diverse range of companies, communities and private individuals. Robust assessments of forest condition are critical for successful forest management, but many existing techniques are highly technical, time-consuming, expensive, or require specialist knowledge. 2. To make assessment of tropical forests accessible to a wide range of actors, many of whom...

Plant traits of grass and legume species for flood resilience and N2O mitigation

Natalie J. Oram, Yan Sun, Diego Abalos, Jan-Willem Van Groenigen, & Gerlinde De Deyn
Flooding threatens the functioning of managed grasslands by decreasing primary productivity and increasing nitrogen losses, notably as the potent greenhouse gas nitrous oxide (N2O). Sowing species with traits that promote flood resilience and mitigate flood-induced N2O emissions within these grasslands could safeguard their productivity while mitigating nitrogen losses. We tested how plant traits and resource acquisition strategies could predict flood resilience and N2O emissions of 12 common grassland species (eight grasses and four legumes) grown...

Ocean warming reduces gastropod survival despite maintenance of feeding and oxygen consumption rates

Kathryn Anderson, Laura Falkenberg & Dina-Leigh Simons
Short-term, sub-lethal response variables are increasingly used to provide rapid indications of whole organism responses to future climate conditions. Accumulating evidence suggests, however, that these response variables may not consistently reflect whole organism responses which manifest over longer time scales. Here, we consider the effect of moderate warming on longer-term whole organism fitness, as reflected by survival, as well as two shorter-term response variables, feeding rate and oxygen consumption, for two tropical gastropod species. We...

Helpers compensate for age-related declines in parental care and offspring survival in a cooperatively breeding bird

Martijn Hammers, Sjouke Kingma, Lotte Van Boheemen, Alexandra Sparks, Terry Burke, Hannah Dugdale, David Richardson & Jan Komdeur
Offspring from elderly parents often have lower survival due to parental senescence. In cooperatively breeding species, where offspring care is shared between breeders and helpers, the alloparental care provided by helpers is predicted to mitigate the impact of parental senescence on offspring provisioning and, subsequently, offspring survival. We test this prediction using data from a long-term study on cooperatively breeding Seychelles warblers (Acrocephalus sechellensis). We find that the nestling-provisioning rate of female breeders declines with...

Data from: Upland rush management advocated by agri-environment schemes increases predation of artificial wader nests

Leah Kelly, David Douglas, Mike Shurmer & Karl Evans
Farmland birds, including breeding waders, have declined across Europe. One frequently advocated strategy to facilitate population recovery is using agri-environment schemes (AES) to improve vegetation structure. A key example is cutting dense rush Juncus to open the sward which aims to increase the abundance of wading birds, for example by improving foraging conditions. Effects on breeding success are, however, unknown. This is a critical knowledge gap as high nest and chick predation rates are a...

Data from: Telomere heritability and parental age at conception effects in a wild avian population

Alexandra Sparks, Lewis Spurgin, Marco Van Der Velde, Eleanor Fairfield, Jan Komdeur, Terry Burke, David Richardson & Hannah Dugdale
Individual variation in telomere length is predictive of health and mortality risk across a range of species. However, the relative influence of environmental and genetic variation on individual telomere length in wild populations remains poorly understood. Heritability of telomere length has primarily been calculated using parent–offspring regression which can be confounded by shared environments. To control for confounding variables, quantitative genetic ‘animal models’ can be used, but few studies have applied animal models in wild...

Visual obstruction, but not moderate traffic noise, increases reliance on heterospecific alarm calls

Chaminda Ratnayake, You Zhou, Francesca Dawson Pell, Dominique Potvin, Andrew Radford & Robert Magrath
Animals rely on both personal and social information about danger to minimise risk, yet environmental conditions constrain information. Both visual obstructions and background noise can reduce detectability of predators, which may increase reliance on social information, such as from alarm calls. Furthermore, a combination of visual and auditory constraints might greatly increase reliance on social information, because the loss of information from one source cannot be compensated by the other. Testing these possibilities requires manipulating...

Causes and consequences of telomere lengthening in a wild vertebrate population

Thomas Brown, David Richardson, Lewis Spurgin, Hannah Dugdale, Jan Komdeur, Terry Burke & David Richardson
Telomeres have been advocated to be important markers of biological age in evolutionary and ecological studies. Telomeres usually shorten with age, and shortening is frequently associated with environmental stressors and increased subsequent mortality. Telomere lengthening – an apparent increase in telomere length between repeated samples from the same individual – also occurs. However, the exact circumstances, and consequences, of telomere lengthening are poorly understood. Using longitudinal data from the Seychelles warbler (Acrocephalus sechellensis), we tested...

Data and R scripts for: Identifying existing management practices in the control of Striga asiatica within rice–maize systems in mid-west Madagascar

Donald Scott
Infestations by the parasitic weed genus Striga result in significant losses to cereal crop yields across sub-Saharan Africa. The problem disproportionately affects subsistence farmers who frequently lack access to novel technologies. Effective Striga management therefore requires the development of strategies utilising existing cultural management practices. We report a multi-year, landscape-scale monitoring project for Striga asiatica in the mid-west of Madagascar, undertaken over 2019-2020 with the aims of examining cultural, climatic and edaphic factors currently driving...

Developing hierarchical density-structured models to study the national-scale dynamics of an arable weed

Rob Goodsell
Population dynamics can be highly variable in the face of environmental heterogeneity, and understanding this variation is central in the study of ecology. Robust management decisions require that we understand how populations respond to management at a range of scales, and under a broad suite of conditions. Population models are potentially valuable tools in addressing this challenge. However, without adequate data, models can fail to produce useful results. Populations of arable weeds are particularly problematic...

Date From: The myriad of complex demographic responses of terrestrial mammals to climate change and gaps of knowledge: A global analysis

Maria Paniw, Tamora James, C. Ruth Archer, Gesa Römer, Sam Levin, Aldo Compagnoni, Judy Che-Castaldo, Joanne Bennett, Andrew Mooney, Dylan Childs, Arpat Ozgul, Owen Jones, Jean Burns, Andrew Beckerman, Abir Patwari, Nora Sanchez-Gassen, Tiffany Knight & Roberto Salguero-Gómez
Approximately 25% of mammals are currently threatened with extinction, a risk that is amplified under climate change. Species persistence under climate change is determined by the combined effects of climatic factors on multiple demographic rates (survival, development, reproduction), and hence, population dynamics. Thus, to quantify which species and regions on Earth are most vulnerable to climate-driven extinction, a global understanding of how different demographic rates respond to climate is urgently needed. Here, we perform a...

Morphological traits mediate fish occurrences in oil palm-impacted tropical streams

Kenny Chua, Felix Lim, Amirrudin Ahmad, Heok Hui Tan & Darren Yeo
Land-use change is a leading driver of biodiversity loss, especially in tropical fresh waters where the conversion of natural forest to monoculture plantations impacts freshwater fish assemblages. The environmental pathways underpinning shifts in fish assemblages, however, are poorly understood, but could potentially be inferred from trait-environment relationships. We addressed this knowledge gap using eco-morphological traits to explain fish occurrences in oil palm-impacted streams of the Endau drainage in Peninsular Malaysia. We also investigated how traits...

Leaf silicification provides herbivore defence regardless of the extensive impacts of water stress

Rebecca Vandegeer, Ximena Cibils-Stewart, Richard Wuhrer, Susan Hartley, David Tissue & Scott Johnson
Altered precipitation patterns due to climate change are likely to impose water-deficit stress in plants resulting in changes to specific leaf mass, leaf water content and chemical defences that may impact herbivorous arthropods. Grasses, in particular, accumulate large concentrations of silicon (Si) which provides physical defence against herbivores. Although Si uptake by plants may be affected by water availability, very few studies have investigated the combined effect of water-deficit stress and Si on insect herbivore...

Data from: Contemporary evolution of the innate immune receptor gene TLR3 in an isolated vertebrate population

Charli Davies, Martin Taylor, Martijn Hammers, Terry Burke, Jan Komdeur, Hannah Dugdale & David Richardson
Understanding where genetic variation exists, and how it influences fitness within populations is important from an evolutionary and conservation perspective. Signatures of past selection suggest that pathogen-mediated balancing selection is a key driver of immunogenetic variation, but studies tracking contemporary evolution are needed to help resolve the evolutionary forces and mechanism at play. Previous work in a bottlenecked population of Seychelles warblers (Acrocephalus sechellensis) show that functional variation has been maintained at the viral-sensing Toll-like...

Global distribution and evolutionary transitions of angiosperm sexual systems

Yunyun Wang, Ao Luo, Tong Lyu, Dimitar Dimitrov, Xiaoting Xu, Robert Freckleton, Yaoqi Li, Xiangyan Su, Yichao Li, Yunpeng Liu, Denis Sandanov, Qingjun Li, Zhanqing Hao, Shuguang Liu & Zhiheng Wang
Angiosperm sexual systems are fundamental to the evolution and distribution of plant diversity, yet spatiotemporal patterns in angiosperm sexual systems and their drivers remain poorly known. Using data on sexual systems and distributions of 68453 angiosperm species, we present the first global maps of sexual system frequencies and evaluate sexual system evolution during the Cenozoic. Frequencies of dioecy and monoecy increase with latitude, while hermaphrodites are more frequent in warm and arid regions. Transitions to...

Simulated ice thickness, supraglacial debris thickness and subglacial topography for Khumbu Glacier, Nepal, using the iSOSIA ice-flow model - VERSION 2.0

Ann Rowan & David Egholm
Simulated ice thickness (ice, metres, 100 m grid spacing) and supraglacial debris thickness (debris, metres, 100 m grid spacing) for Khumbu Glacier, Nepal, produced using the iSOSIA ice-flow model presented in Rowan et al. (2021; Journal of Geophysical Research-Earth Surface). The model domains used for the entire glacier and active glacier simulations (metres above sea level, 100 m grid spacing), and the present-day ice thickness estimate (metres, 30 m grid spacing) used to create the...

Silicon enrichment alters functional traits in legumes depending on plant genotype and symbiosis with nitrogen-fixing bacteria

Rocky Putra, Rebecca K. Vandegeer, Shawan Karan, Jeff R. Powell, Susan E. Hartley & Scott N. Johnson
1. Silicon (Si) uptake and deposition (silicification) in tissues is known to alleviate stresses and generally improve plant health. This is mostly studied in Si-high accumulators, such as grasses, with comparatively less known about its effects on other plant functional groups, such as legumes. There is speculation that Si may positively impact the symbiosis between legumes and the nitrogen-fixing bacteria (rhizobia) they associate with, but this is poorly understood. This study examined the effects of...

Data from: Opposing effects of competition and selection on macroevolutionary dynamics

Alex Slavenko & Gavin Thomas
The diversity of species and traits is the outcome of multiple evolutionary processes operating over millions of years. These processes affect rates of trait evolution, speciation, and extinction. A key problem is identifying the relative importance of distinct processes in driving observed patterns in species traits and phylogenetic trees. Here, we show how two processes, competition and stabilising selection, can act opposingly but still leave identifiable traces in macroevolutionary data. Building on previous simulation studies,...

Traits explain sorting of C4 grasses along a global precipitation gradient

Emma Jardine, Colin Osborne & Gavin Thomas
Species distributions are closely associated with moisture availability, but the underlying mechanisms remain unresolved. Drought relations are especially important for plants such as C4 grasses that dominate seasonally dry ecosystems. Here, we test the hypothesis that C4 grass species sampled across global precipitation gradients show variation in survival under drought that can be explained by their traits. Our experiment subjected 18 C4 grass species to a lethal drought under controlled environmental conditions. The number of...

Data from: Genetic variation for adaptive traits is associated with polymorphic inversions in Littorina saxatilis

Eva Koch, Hernán Morales, Jenny Larsson, Anja Westram, Rui Faria, Alan Lemmon, Emily Lemmon, Kerstin Johannesson & Roger Butlin
Chromosomal inversion polymorphisms, segments of chromosomes that are flipped in orientation and occur in reversed order in some individuals, have long been recognized to play an important role in local adaptation. They can reduce recombination in heterozygous individuals and thus help to maintain sets of locally adapted alleles. In a wide range of organisms, populations adapted to different habitats differ in frequency of inversion arrangements. However, getting a full understanding of the importance of inversions...

Evolution of large males is associated with female-skewed adult sex ratios in amniotes

András Liker, Veronika Bókony, Ivett Pipoly, Jean-François Lemaître, Jean-Michel Gaillard, Tamas Szekely & Robert P. Freckleton
Body size often differs between the sexes (leading to sexual size dimorphism, SSD), as a consequence of differential responses by males and females to selection pressures. Adult sex ratio (the proportion of males in the adult population, ASR) should influence SSD because ASR relates to both the number of competitors and available mates, which shape the intensity of mating competition and thereby promotes SSD evolution. However, whether ASR correlates with SSD variation among species has...

Inversions and genomic differentiation after secondary contact: when drift contributes to maintenance, not loss, of differentiation

Marina Rafajlovic, Jordi Rambla, Jeffrey L. Feder, Arcadi Navarro & Rui Faria
Due to their effects on reducing recombination, chromosomal inversions may play an important role in speciation by establishing and/or maintaining linked blocks of genes causing reproductive isolation (RI) between populations. This view fits empirical data indicating that inversions typically harbour loci involved in RI. However, previous computer simulations of infinite populations with 2-4 loci involved in RI implied that, even with gene flux as low as 10^(-8) per gamete, per generation between alternative arrangements, inversions...

Expanding the agricultural - sanitation circular economy: opportunities and benefits

Steven Banwart, Laura Carter, Tim Daniell, Yong-Guan Zhu, Hongyan Guo, Jeremy Guest, Stuart Kirk, Barbara Evans, Patrick McKenna & Sarah Dennis
An expanded circular economy between agriculture and sanitation waste (sewage) can recycle essential resources for agriculture through the recovery of water, biomass, and nutrients from sewage at scale. Doing so can help to increase or maintain soil productivity and support agricultural outputs; produce heat and power; reduce Green House Gas (GHG) emissions; and minimise stresses on water reserves.

Fine-scale genetic structure reflects limited and coordinated dispersal in the colonial monk parakeet, Myiopsitta monachus

Francesca Dawson Pell, Juan Carlos Senar, Daniel Franks & Ben Hatchwell
The genetic structure of animal populations has considerable behavioural, ecological and evolutionary implications and may arise from various demographic traits. Here, we use observational field data and molecular genetics to determine the genetic structure of an invasive population of monk parakeets, Myiopsitta monachus, at a range of spatial scales, and investigate the demographic processes that generate the observed structure. Monk parakeets construct large nests that can house several pairs occupying separate chambers; these nests are...

Registration Year

  • 2021
    30

Resource Types

  • Dataset
    30

Affiliations

  • University of Sheffield
    30
  • University of Groningen
    6
  • University of Leeds
    6
  • University of East Anglia
    5
  • Western Sydney University
    3
  • University of Oxford
    3
  • Aarhus University
    2
  • University of Gothenburg
    2
  • University of York
    2
  • Wageningen University & Research
    2