Preprints

Filtering by Subject: Other Ecology and Evolutionary Biology

Cryptic species and hybridisation in corals: challenges and opportunities for conservation and restoration

Cynthia Riginos, Iva Popovic, Zoe Meziere, et al.

Published: 2024-02-14
Subjects: Genomics, Marine Biology, Other Ecology and Evolutionary Biology

Conservation and management of coral reef ecosystems will depend on accurate assessments of reef-building coral species diversity. However, the true diversity of corals may be obfuscated by the presence of cryptic species, which are likely much more pervasive than is currently recognised. Additionally, cryptic species may sometimes hybridize, resulting in gene introgression between species. Here, [...]

The Distraction Function of Extrafloral Nectaries: Keeping Ants Away From Flowers and Preventing Disruption of Pollination

Mario A. Sandoval Molina, Emilio González-Camarena, Jessica Rosas-Sánchez, et al.

Published: 2024-01-30
Subjects: Desert Ecology, Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, Life Sciences, Other Ecology and Evolutionary Biology

In exchange for extrafloral nectar, ants deter herbivores from the plants, reducing the amount of herbivory they suffered. However, this defensive mutualism can sometimes have negative effects on plants, as ants may also visit flowers, deterring pollinators and reducing plant fitness. The Distraction Hypothesis posits that extrafloral nectaries (EFNs) have the function of attracting ants and [...]

Multiple habitat graphs: how connectivity brings forth landscape ecological processes

Paul Savary, Céline Clauzel, Jean-Christophe Foltête, et al.

Published: 2024-01-30
Subjects: Other Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, Population Biology, Terrestrial and Aquatic Ecology

Habitat connectivity is integral to current biodiversity science and conservation strategies. Originally, the connectivity concept stressed the role of individual movements for landscape-scale processes. Connectivity determines whether populations can survive in sub-optimal patches (i.e., source-sink effects), complete life cycles relying on different habitat types (i.e., landscape [...]

The genetic basis of a regionally isolated sexual dimorphism involves cortex

Kalle Tunström, Ramprasad neethiraj, Naomi L.P. Keehnen, et al.

Published: 2024-01-29
Subjects: Biology, Evolution, Genetics and Genomics, Other Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, Population Biology

Sexual dimorphisms represent a source of phenotypic variation and result from differences in how natural and sexual selection act on males and females within a species. Identifying the genetic basis of dimorphism can be challenging, especially once it is fixed within a species. However, studying polymorphisms, even when fixed within a population, can provide insights into the genetic basis of [...]

Predicting organismal response to marine heatwaves using mechanistic thermal landscape models

Andrew R Villeneuve, Easton R White

Published: 2024-01-23
Subjects: Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, Life Sciences, Marine Biology, Other Ecology and Evolutionary Biology

Marine heatwaves (MHWs) can cause thermal stress in marine ectotherms, experienced as a pulse against the press of anthropogenic warming. When thermal stress exceeds organismal capacity to maintain homeostasis, organism survival becomes time-limited and can result in mass mortality events. Current methods of detecting and categorizing MHWs rely on statistical analysis of historic climatology, and [...]

A universal DNA barcode for the Tree of Life

Bruno A S de Medeiros, Liming Cai, Peter J Flynn, et al.

Published: 2024-01-18
Subjects: Bioinformatics, Computational Biology, Genomics, Other Ecology and Evolutionary Biology

Species identification using DNA barcodes has revolutionized biodiversity sciences and society at large. However, conventional barcoding methods do not reflect genomic complexity, may lack sufficient variation, and rely on limited genomic loci that are not universal across the Tree of Life. Here, we develop a novel barcoding method that uses exceptionally low-coverage genome skim data to create a [...]

A big data and machine learning approach for monitoring the condition of ecosystems

Miguel Equihua, Octavio Pérez-Maqueo, Julián Equihua, et al.

Published: 2024-01-16
Subjects: Applied Statistics, Biodiversity, Bioinformatics, Earth Sciences, Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, Environmental Sciences, Forest Biology, Forest Sciences, Life Sciences, Other Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, Physical Sciences and Mathematics, Statistical Methodology, Statistical Models, Terrestrial and Aquatic Ecology

Ecosystems are highly valuable as a source of goods and services and as a heritage for future generations. Knowing their condition is extremely important for all management and conservation activities and public policies. Until now, the evaluation of ecosystem condition has been unsatisfactory and thus lacks practical implementation for most countries. We propose that ecosystem integrity is a [...]

Biogeographical diet variation within and between the rabbitfishes Siganus corallinus, Siganus virgatus, Siganus doliatus and Siganus trispilos

Salvador Zarco-Perello, Andrew Hoey, Storm Martin

Published: 2023-12-27
Subjects: Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, Life Sciences, Other Ecology and Evolutionary Biology

Feeding habits of herbivorous fish play an important role in the form and function of coastal marine ecosystems. Rabbitfishes (Siganidae) have been recognized as important consumers of macroalgae in the coral reefs of the Indo-Pacific region. However, it is unclear how their diet varies among and within species at biogeographical scales. The present study assessed the inter- and intra-specific [...]

Shrinking body size may not provide meaningful thermoregulatory benefits in a warmer world

Andreas Nord, Elin Persson, Joshua Kenneth Robertson Tabh, et al.

Published: 2023-12-13
Subjects: Comparative and Evolutionary Physiology, Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, Life Sciences, Ornithology, Other Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, Physiology, Terrestrial and Aquatic Ecology, Zoology

In a recent and impressive analysis of avian morphological data (covering >250 000 male birds from 105 species), Youngflesh et al.1 report that birds breeding in North America have become significantly lighter over the last three decades, coincident with rising breeding season temperatures. Because these observations recapitulate predictions under Bergmann’s Rule (i.e., that the body size of [...]

Opinion: Missing half the picture, focus on stony corals during bleaching events has left critical knowledge gaps in our understanding of reef-scale bleaching and recovery

Rosemary Kate Steinberg

Published: 2023-11-28
Subjects: Biodiversity, Biology, Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, Life Sciences, Marine Biology, Other Ecology and Evolutionary Biology

Octocoral Symbiodiniaceae, but not bacterial communities, are resistant to compositional changes from heat stress on a subtropical reef

Rosemary Kate Steinberg, Katherine A Dafforn, Emma L Johnston, et al.

Published: 2023-11-20
Subjects: Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, Life Sciences, Marine Biology, Other Ecology and Evolutionary Biology

Microbes are essential to the holobiome of all organisms, so when organisms are impacted by environmental stressors the changes to microbial communities can inform on the health state of the host and even cause host disease. In early 2019 marine heatwaves occurred across eastern Australia, resulting in differential bleaching across Lord Howe Island reefs. Here we examined the Symbiodiniaceae and [...]

Sharing the burden: Cabbage stem flea beetle pest pressure and crop damage are lower in rapeseed fields surrounded by other rapeseed crops

Daniel J Leybourne, Antonia M C Pahl, Petra Melloh, et al.

Published: 2023-11-04
Subjects: Agriculture, Entomology, Life Sciences, Other Ecology and Evolutionary Biology

The cabbage stem flea beetle (Psylliodes chrysocephala) is a significant pest of rapeseed (Brassica napus). Feeding by adult P. chrysocephala can cause severe leaf damage and larval infestation can reduce stem strength, both of which impact crop growth and development, causing substantial yield losses and economic damage. The structure of the agricultural landscape can regulate herbivorous pest [...]

Maternal investment and early thermal conditions affect performance and antipredator responses

Maider Iglesias Carrasco, Jiayu Zhang, Daniel W.A. Noble

Published: 2023-10-27
Subjects: Behavior and Ethology, Biology, Evolution, Other Ecology and Evolutionary Biology

Exposure to increased temperatures during early development can lead to phenotypic plasticity in morphology, physiology, and behaviour across a range of ectothermic animals. In addition, maternal effects are known to be important contributors to phenotypic variation in offspring. Whether the two factors interact to shape offspring morphology and behaviour has been barely explored. This is [...]

Functional trait dataset of benthic macroinvertebrates in South Korean streams

Sagar Adhurya, Da-Yeong Lee, Dae-Seong Lee, et al.

Published: 2023-09-22
Subjects: Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, Other Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, Terrestrial and Aquatic Ecology

Functional traits are the result of evolution and adaptation, providing important ecological insights into how organisms interact with their environment. Benthic macroinvertebrates, in particular, have garnered attention as biomonitoring indicators for freshwater ecosystems. This study presents a functional trait dataset for benthic macroinvertebrates, comprising 447 taxa (393 at genus level, 53 [...]

Metaweb and its applications in understanding ecological interactions

Sagar Adhurya, Nisha Agasti, Young-seuk Park

Published: 2023-09-22
Subjects: Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, Other Ecology and Evolutionary Biology

Understanding the dynamics of ecological interactions is an essential initial step in acquiring a comprehensive understanding of the ecosystem structure and functions. Such knowledge is pivotal in effective conservation planning, sustainable development, and ecosystem management. However, the limited availability of information on ecological interactions, commonly referred to as Eltonian [...]

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