Preprints

Filtering by Subject: Ecology and Evolutionary Biology

Ecological Dynamics and Forecasting: A graduate course on the fundamentals of time series and forecasting in ecology

S.K. Morgan Ernest, Hao Ye, Ethan White

Published: 2022-12-05
Subjects: Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, Life Sciences

Ecological Dynamics and Forecasting is a semester-long course to introduce students to the fundamentals of ecological dynamics and forecasting. This course implements a combination of paper-based discussion to introduce students to concepts and ideas and R-based tutorials for hands-on application and training. The course material includes a reading list with prompting questions for discussions, [...]

Alternative reading frames are an underappreciated source of protein sequence novelty

Zachary Ardern

Published: 2022-12-05
Subjects: Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, Evolution, Genetics and Genomics, Genomics, Life Sciences

Alternative reading frames of protein coding genes are a major contributor to the evolution of novel protein products. Recent studies demonstrating this include examples across the three domains of cellular life and in viruses. Alternative frame sequences both increase the number of trials available for the evolutionary invention of new genes and have unusual properties which may facilitate gene [...]

Understanding local plant extinctions before it’s too late: bridging evolutionary genomics with global ecology.

Moises Exposito-Alonso

Published: 2022-12-01
Subjects: Biodiversity, Bioinformatics, Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, Genetics and Genomics, Life Sciences, Plant Sciences

Understanding evolutionary genomic and population processes within a species range is key to anticipating the extinction of plant species before it is too late. However, most models of biodiversity risk projections under global change do not account for the genetic variation and local adaptation of different populations. Population diversity is critical to understanding extinction because [...]

Describing posterior distributions of variance components: Problems and the use of null distributions to aid interpretation

Joel L Pick, Claudia Kasper, Hassen Allegue, et al.

Published: 2022-11-26
Subjects: Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, Life Sciences

Assessing the biological relevance of variance components estimated using MCMC-based mixed-effects models is not straightforward. Variance estimates are constrained to be greater than zero and their posterior distributions are often asymmetric. Different measures of central tendency for these distributions can therefore be very different, and credible intervals cannot overlap zero, making it [...]

Implications of microbial community assembly for ecosystem restoration: patterns, process, and potential

Emily Graham, Joseph E Knelman

Published: 2022-11-23
Subjects: Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, Environmental Microbiology and Microbial Ecology Life Sciences, Life Sciences

While it is now widely accepted that microorganisms provide essential functions in restoration ecology, the nature of relationships between microbial community assembly and ecosystem recovery remain unclear. There has been a longstanding challenge to decipher whether microorganisms facilitate or simply follow ecosystem recovery, and evidence for each is mixed at best. We propose that [...]

Accounting for cloud cover and circannual variation puts the effect of lunar phase on deer-vehicle collisions into perspective

Jacopo Cerri, Laura Stendardi, Elena Bužan, et al.

Published: 2022-11-22
Subjects: Biodiversity, Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, Life Sciences, Zoology

Although several studies have focused on the influence of moonlight over deer-vehicle collisions, findings have been inconsistent. This may be due to neglecting the effects of cloud cover, a major impediment to moon illumination, and circannual variation in both deer and human activity. We modeled how median cloud cover interacted with the illuminated fraction of the moon in affecting daily roe [...]

A tale of two genomes: What drives mitonuclear discordance in asexual lineages of a freshwater snail?

Maurine Neiman, Joel Sharbrough

Published: 2022-11-21
Subjects: Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, Evolution, Life Sciences

We use genomic information to tell us stories of evolutionary origins. But what does it mean when different genomes report wildly different accounts of lineage history? This “discordance” can be a consequence of a fascinating suite of natural history and evolutionary phenomena, from the different inheritance mechanisms of nuclear vs. cytoplasmic genomes to hybridization and introgression to [...]

High cryptic diversity in a caddisfly that co-occurs in lakes and streams

Christine Ann Parisek, Michael P Marchetti, Matthew R Cover

Published: 2022-11-18
Subjects: Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, Life Sciences

Lake and stream fauna are frequently studied, yet surprisingly little is known about ecological and evolutionary dynamics of species that inhabit both lentic and lotic habitats. There are few examples of species co-occurring in the different habitat flow types, which raises questions on how this may impact their ability to adapt to changing climatic conditions. The aquatic insect Limnephilus [...]

Misrepresenting biases in arrival: a comment on Svensson (2022)

Alejandro Cano, Alejandro Couce, Joanna Masel, et al.

Published: 2022-11-17
Subjects: Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, Evolution, Life Sciences

The idea that adaptive change is subject to biases in variation by a "first come, first served" dynamic is not part of classic evolutionary reasoning. Yet, predictable effects of biases in the introduction of variation have been reported in models of population genetics, in laboratory evolution, and in retrospective analyses of natural adaptation. This effect of "arrival bias" has potentially [...]

The cost of being a non-native English speaker in science

Tatsuya Amano, Valeria Ramírez-Castañeda, Violeta Berdejo-Espinola, et al.

Published: 2022-11-10
Subjects: Biodiversity, Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, International and Intercultural Communication, Publishing, Scholarly Publishing

The use of English as the common language of science represents a major impediment to maximising the contribution of non-native English speakers to science. Yet few studies have quantified the consequences of language barriers on the career development of researchers who are non-native English speakers. Our survey demonstrates that non-native English speakers, especially early in their careers, [...]

Space-for-time substitutions in climate change ecology and evolution

Rebecca SL Lovell, Sinead Collins, Simon H Martin, et al.

Published: 2022-11-10
Subjects: Ecology and Evolutionary Biology

In an epoch of rapid environmental change, understanding and predicting how biodiversity will respond to a changing climate is one of the most urgent challenges faced in ecology and evolution. Since we seldom have sufficient long-term biological data to use the past to anticipate the future, spatial climate-biotic associations are often used as a proxy for predicting biotic responses to climate [...]

Heritability and developmental plasticity of growth in an oviparous lizard

Fonti Kar, Shinichi Nakagawa, Daniel W.A. Noble

Published: 2022-11-09
Subjects: Ecology and Evolutionary Biology

Selective processes act on phenotypic variation yet the evolutionary potential of any given trait relies on underlying heritable variation. Developmental plasticity is an important source of phenotypic variation, but it can also promote changes in heritability by modifying environmental sources of variability. Here, we quantified the influence of developmental temperature on an important fitness [...]

Evolutionary origins of the Mesoamerican-eastern United States floristic disjunction: current status and future prospects

Gregory W Stull

Published: 2022-11-07
Subjects: Biodiversity, Biology, Botany, Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, Evolution, Life Sciences, Plant Sciences

Biogeographic disjunction patterns, where multiple taxonomic groups are shared between isolated geographic areas, represent excellent systems for investigating the historical assembly of modern biotas as well as fundamental biological processes such as speciation, diversification, niche evolution, and evolutionary responses to climate change. Studies on plant genera disjunct across the Northern [...]

The Fieldwork Wellness Framework: A new approach to field research in Ecology

Anna Elizabeth Nordseth, Jacqueline R Gerson, Lucrecia K Aguilar, et al.

Published: 2022-11-07
Subjects: Biology, Ecology and Evolutionary Biology

Fieldwork is often an important aspect of research in Ecology, Evolution, and Conservation Biology (EECB), but individuals with marginalized identities are likely to experience compromised wellness. The responsibility for structurally changing fieldwork to improve experiences and outcomes falls on the entire EECB community. We propose a Fieldwork Wellness Framework to replace traditional [...]

Iterative species distribution modeling results in the discovery of novel populations of a rare cold desert perennial

Israel Temitope Borokini, Kenneth Nussear, Blaise Petitpierre, et al.

Published: 2022-11-02
Subjects: Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, Life Sciences

Niche modeling for rare and range-restricted species can generate inaccurate predictions leading to an overestimation of a species geographic distribution. We used an iterative ensemble modeling approach and model-stratified field surveys to improve niche model formulation and better understand the ecological drivers of Ivesia webberi distribution. I. webberi is a U.S. federally threatened [...]

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