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Acanthurid surgeonfishes are an abundant and diverse group of herbivorous fishes on coral reefs. While their contribution to trophic linkages and dynamics in coral reef systems has received considerable attention, the role of linkages involving their parasites has not. As both consumers of fish tissue and prey to microcarnivores, external parasites can play a significant role in trophic transfer between the primarily algae-based food source and the broader coral reef community. Stable isotope analysis is a common tool for studying trophic linkages, which can be used for studies involving parasites. These data were collected to examine the stable isotope ecology (13C and 15N) of copepod (Caligus atromaculatus) and...
July 27, 2015 - To study warming temperatures, the Rob Dunn Lab has set up small chambers to simulate climate change in the woods of North Carolina and Massachusetts. Learn more in the National Geographic video: http://video.nationalgeographic.com/video/news/150727-news-warming-chambers-vin?source=searchvideo
By influencing nutrient mineralization in the soil, decomposers may affect the performance of plants and their associated herbivores. The strength of above–belowground linkages may therefore depend on the availability of nutrients in ecosystems. We investigated the dependency of decomposer- and leaf-herbivore-mediated changes in plant performance on soil nutrient availability in microcosm systems. In separate treatments, Poa annua was used as host plant for the herbivore and was grown in combination with different herb species: Plantago lanceolata, Trifolium repens, and Sanguisorba minor. At three different levels of nutrient availability, the impact of Collembola (Folsomia candida) and aphids (Rhopalosiphum padi),...
Abstract (from http://www.esajournals.org/doi/abs/10.1890/ES15-00266.1): Climate often drives ungulate population dynamics, and as climates change, some areas may become unsuitable for species persistence. Unraveling the relationships between climate and population dynamics, and projecting them across time, advances ecological understanding that informs and steers sustainable conservation for species. Using pronghorn ( Antilocapra americana) as an ecological model, we used a Bayesian approach to analyze long-term population, precipitation, and temperature data from 18 populations in the southwestern United States. We determined which long-term (12 and 24 months) or short-term (gestation trimester and lactation period)...
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We monitored Greater Sage-Grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus; hereafter, Sage-Grouse) nests and various habitat characteristics at the nest locations near Susanville in northeastern California, crossing over into northwestern Nevada. We employed a before-after-control-impact (BACI) experimental design to account for spatiotemporal heterogeneity in the system and to derive estimates of relative change in survival parameters. Sage-Grouse nest survival decreased after the Rush Fire but decreased more in the burned area relative to the unburned area. Although female Sage-Grouse continued to occupy burned areas, nest survival was reduced from 52 percent to 19 percent. Using a BACI ratio approach we found that nest survival...
Understanding of the influence of global warming has been limited by a paucity of experiments. Taking advantage of the largest, longest-running experimental warming of a forest, we convened dozens of scientists from across the world to collect data to study and understand how bacteria, fungi, herbivores, plant pathogens, insects and a diversity of other groups respond to warming. We found that warming had a significant impact on ecosystems at both a site in North Carolina, as well as a more northern site in Massachusetts. The types of effects, however, differed between the north and south; they also differed as a function of the organisms considered. While warming affected all levels of organization, it had the...
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Recent estimates of the magnitude of species’ range shifts, extinctions, and changes in ecosystem processes resulting from climatic change are alarming. Estimates of extinction rates and population losses attributable to climatic change are often based on studies of modeled biogeographic distributions, which rely on simple relationships between present-day distributions of species and climate variables to estimate distributions of species under future climate. Hundreds of papers using distribution models - based almost exclusively on relationships between plants and climate - have been published. The predictions of these models undergird conservation plans, are used to forecast the magnitude of future extinctions,...
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These data were compiled from pitfall traps deployed at three sites, along a 25 kilometers (km) stretch of the Colorado River, immediately downstream of Glen Canyon Dam, in Glen Canyon National Recreation Area. Each site had both pre and post-dam riparian habitats present. The purpose of the sampling was to determine if arthropod abundance, diversity and feeding guilds differed between habitats. Sampling for ground-dwelling arthropods using pitfall traps occurred continuously between June 17 and September 9, 2009. The site numbering proceeds from Glen Canyon Dam to Lees Ferry. Transects were composed of 10 pitfall traps approximately 10 meters apart in a line parallel with the river in both zones (Upper riparian...
By influencing nutrient mineralization in the soil, decomposers may affect the performance of plants and their associated herbivores. The strength of above–belowground linkages may therefore depend on the availability of nutrients in ecosystems. We investigated the dependency of decomposer- and leaf-herbivore-mediated changes in plant performance on soil nutrient availability in microcosm systems. In separate treatments, Poa annua was used as host plant for the herbivore and was grown in combination with different herb species: Plantago lanceolata, Trifolium repens, and Sanguisorba minor. At three different levels of nutrient availability, the impact of Collembola (Folsomia candida) and aphids (Rhopalosiphum padi),...
The green wave hypothesis (GWH) states that migrating animals should track or ‘surf’ high-quality forage at the leading edge of spring green-up. To index such high-quality forage, recent work proposed the instantaneous rate of green-up (IRG), i.e. rate of change in the normalized difference vegetation index over time. Despite this important advancement, no study has tested the assumption that herbivores select habitat patches at peak IRG. We evaluated this assumption using step selection functions parametrized with movement data during the green-up period from two populations each of bighorn sheep, mule deer, elk, moose and bison, totalling 463 individuals monitored 1–3 years from 2004 to 2014. Accounting for variables...


    map background search result map search result map Forests of the Future: Integrated Assessment of Climate Change and Ecosystem Diversity Ground-dwelling arthropod composition, Colorado River, Grand Canyon, 2009—Data Stable isotope dynamics of herbivorous reef fishes and their ectoparasites: 2012, 2013, 2018 Greater Sage-Grouse Nest Observations Before and After Wildfire Disturbance in Northeastern California (2007-2018) Forests of the Future: Integrated Assessment of Climate Change and Ecosystem Diversity Ground-dwelling arthropod composition, Colorado River, Grand Canyon, 2009—Data Greater Sage-Grouse Nest Observations Before and After Wildfire Disturbance in Northeastern California (2007-2018)