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Trends in Ecology & Evolution



ISSN: 0169-5347 (1872-8383)
Ecology - Evolutionary Biology - Genetics & Heredity - Ecology, Evolution, Behavior and Systematics
APC costs unknown

Recent articles

1 show abstract
0169-5347 * * 27728920
Publication date: Available online 10 September 2018

Source: Trends in Ecology & Evolution
Author(s): Zoë A. Doubleday, Sean D. Connell
2 show abstract
0169-5347 * * 27728921
Publication date: Available online 10 September 2018

Source: Trends in Ecology & Evolution
Author(s): Mark J. Costello, Tammy Horton, Andreas Kroh

The World Register of Marine Species (WoRMS) is a sustainable model of international collaboration around a centralised database that provides expert validated biodiversity data freely online. This model could be replicated for the over 1.2 million terrestrial and freshwater species to improve quality control and data management in biology and ecology globally.
3 show abstract
0169-5347 * * 27759697
Publication date: Available online 14 September 2018

Source: Trends in Ecology & Evolution
Author(s): Alexandra J.R. Carthey, Michael R. Gillings, Daniel T. Blumstein

Microbes are now known to influence inter- and intraspecific olfactory signaling systems. They do so by producing metabolites that function as odorants. A unique attribute of such odorants is that they arise as a product of microbial–host interactions. These interactions need not be mutualistic, and indeed can be antagonistic. We develop an integrated ecoevolutionary model to explore microbially mediated olfactory communication and a process model that illustrates the various ways that microbial products might contribute to odorants. This novel approach generates testable predictions, including that selection to incorporate microbial products should be a common feature of infochemicals that communicate identity but not those that communicate fitness or quality. Microbes extend an individual’s genotype, but also enhance vulnerability to environmental change.
4 show abstract
0169-5347 * * 27759698
Publication date: Available online 13 September 2018

Source: Trends in Ecology & Evolution
Author(s): Patrick J. O’Connor, Margaret A. Cargill
5 show abstract
0169-5347 * * 27785659
Publication date: Available online 18 September 2018

Source: Trends in Ecology & Evolution
Author(s): Marty Kardos, Aaron B.A. Shafer

The genomics revolution has sparked interest in using our increased understanding of the loci involved in phenotypic variation and adaptation to advance the conservation of biodiversity. Despite much interest and discussion, it remains unclear whether, when, and how such analyses should be used to guide conservation action. Such ‘gene-targeted’ conservation strategies, while promising, are complicated by several factors including the complex genomic architecture of phenotypic variation and the strong potential for undesirable outcomes such as the loss of genome-wide genetic variation and evolutionary potential. We caution against relying on gene-targeted approaches as a conservation silver bullet and propose rigorous criteria to identify situations where gene-targeted approaches are likely to benefit conservation.
6 show abstract
0169-5347 * * 27818205
Publication date: Available online 20 September 2018

Source: Trends in Ecology & Evolution
Author(s): Graeme C. Hays, Thomas K. Doyle, Jonathan D.R. Houghton

The past 30 years have seen several paradigm shifts in our understanding of how ocean ecosystems function. Now recent technological advances add to an overwhelming body of evidence for another paradigm shift in terms of the role of gelatinous plankton (jellyfish) in marine food webs. Traditionally viewed as trophic dead ends, stable isotope analysis of predator tissues, animal-borne cameras, and DNA analysis of fecal and gut samples (metabarcoding) are all indicating that many taxa routinely consume jellyfish. Despite their low energy density, the contribution of jellyfish to the energy budgets of predators may be much greater than assumed because of rapid digestion, low capture costs, availability, and selective feeding on the more energy-rich components. Feeding on jellyfish may make marine predators susceptible to ingestion of plastics.
7 show abstract
0169-5347 * * 27818206
Publication date: Available online 19 September 2018

Source: Trends in Ecology & Evolution
Author(s): Tim S. Doherty, Lucie M. Bland, Brett A. Bryan, Timothy Neale, Emily Nicholson, Euan G. Ritchie, Don A. Driscoll

Conservation targets perform beneficial auxiliary functions that are rarely acknowledged, including raising awareness, building partnerships, promoting investment, and developing new knowledge. Building on these auxiliary functions could enable more rapid progress towards current targets and inform the design of future targets.
8 show abstract
0169-5347 * * 27873130
Publication date: Available online 27 September 2018

Source: Trends in Ecology & Evolution
Author(s): Ralf Seppelt, Michael Beckmann, Tomáš Václavík, Martin Volk

Humanity builds upon scientific findings, but the credibility of science might be at risk in a ‘postfactual’ era of advanced information technologies. Here we propose a systemic change for science, to turn away from a growth paradigm and to refocus on quality, characterized by curiosity, surprise, discovery, and societal relevance.
9 show abstract
0169-5347 * * 27873131
Publication date: Available online 26 September 2018

Source: Trends in Ecology & Evolution
Author(s): Shai Meiri, Pasquale Raia, Ana M.C. Santos
10 show abstract
0169-5347 * * 27873132
Publication date: Available online 26 September 2018

Source: Trends in Ecology & Evolution
Author(s): Joan Dudney, Richard J. Hobbs, Robert Heilmayr, John J. Battles, Katharine N. Suding

Resilience theory is increasingly applied to the management of global change impacts. There is growing concern, however, that misapplications of resilience-based management (RBM) can sometimes lead to undesirable outcomes. We address here an inescapable conundrum in the application of resilience theory: systems will need to track environmental change, but management that aims to support adaptive capacity can introduce undesirable levels of change. We provide a framework that links concepts from novel ecosystems and resilience theory to inform management of ecosystem change. We highlight that resilience-based applications need to address risks associated with novel human impacts to improve management outcomes.
11 show abstract
0169-5347 * * 27873133
Publication date: Available online 25 September 2018

Source: Trends in Ecology & Evolution
Author(s): Brent C. Emerson, Jairo Patiño
12 show abstract
0169-5347 * * 27873134
Publication date: Available online 25 September 2018

Source: Trends in Ecology & Evolution
Author(s): Elizabeth Theresa Miller, Richard Svanbäck, Brendan J.M. Bohannan

Interest in host-associated microbiomes has skyrocketed recently, yet our ability to explain microbiome variation has remained stubbornly low. Considering scales of interaction beyond the level of the individual host could lead to new insights. Metacommunity theory has many of the tools necessary for modeling multiscale processes and has been successfully applied to host microbiomes. However, the biotic nature of the host requires an expansion of theory to incorporate feedback between the habitat patch (host) and their local (microbial) community. This feedback can have unexpected effects, is predicted to be common, and can arise through a variety of mechanisms, including developmental, ecological, and evolutionary processes. We propose a new way forward for both metacommunity theory and host microbiome research that incorporates this feedback.
13 show abstract
0169-5347 * * 27935811
Publication date: Available online 3 October 2018

Source: Trends in Ecology & Evolution
Author(s): Jedediah F. Brodie, Kent H. Redford, Daniel F. Doak

Effective conservation strategies must ensure that species remain not just extant, but able to maintain key roles in species interactions and in the maintenance of communities and ecosystems. Such ecological functions, however, have not been well incorporated into management or policy. We present a framework for quantifying ecological function that is complementary to population viability analysis (PVA) and that allows function to be integrated into strategic planning processes. Ecological function analysis (EFA) focuses on preventing secondary extinctions and maintaining ecosystem structure, biogeochemical processes, and resiliency. EFA can use a range of modeling approaches and, because most species interactions are relatively weak, EFA needs to be performed for relatively few species or functions, making it a realistic way to improve conservation management.
14 show abstract
0169-5347 * * 27935812
Publication date: Available online 1 October 2018

Source: Trends in Ecology & Evolution
Author(s): David R. Feinberg, Benedict C. Jones, Marie M. Armstrong

Selection for low male voice pitch is generally assumed to occur because it is a valid cue of formidability. Here we summarize recent empirical challenges to this hypothesis. We also outline an alternative account in which selection for low male voice pitch is a byproduct of sensory exploitation.
15 show abstract
0169-5347 * * 27963633
Publication date: Available online 5 October 2018

Source: Trends in Ecology & Evolution
Author(s): Ken A. Thompson, Loren H. Rieseberg, Dolph Schluter

Many outstanding questions about speciation are difficult to test empirically because of a lack of suitable study systems. Here, we highlight studies of evolutionary ecology in urban environments to argue that cities provide ideal conditions that can be leveraged to study the speciation process. Considering general findings from these studies, we discuss the mechanisms of speciation that are likely to occur in cities. We also discuss fundamental questions about speciation that urban environments are uniquely suited to address, such as those about the earliest stages of divergence or the role of phenotypic plasticity. We conclude that the study of contemporary speciation in urban environments has promise to facilitate discoveries about the process of speciation as it occurs in the Anthropocene.
16 show abstract
0169-5347 * * 27991972
Publication date: Available online 9 October 2018

Source: Trends in Ecology & Evolution
Author(s): James M. Bullock, Dries Bonte, Gesine Pufal, Carolina da Silva Carvalho, Daniel S. Chapman, Cristina García, Daniel García, Erik Matthysen, Maria Mar Delgado

Humans fundamentally affect dispersal, directly by transporting individuals and indirectly by altering landscapes and natural vectors. This human-mediated dispersal (HMD) modifies long-distance dispersal, changes dispersal paths, and overall benefits certain species or genotypes while disadvantaging others. HMD is leading to radical changes in the structure and functioning of spatial networks, which are likely to intensify as human activities increase in scope and extent. Here, we provide an overview to guide research into HMD and the resulting rewiring of spatial networks, making predictions about the ecological and evolutionary consequences and how these vary according to spatial scale and the traits of species. Future research should consider HMD holistically, assessing the range of direct and indirect processes to understand the complex impacts on eco-evolutionary dynamics.
17 show abstract
0169-5347 * * 27991973
Publication date: Available online 9 October 2018

Source: Trends in Ecology & Evolution
Author(s): Nico Eisenhauer, Sylvie Herrmann, Jes Hines, François Buscot, Julia Siebert, Madhav P. Thakur

Research exploring the timing of recurring biological events has shown that anthropogenic climate change dramatically alters the phenology of many plants and animals. However, we still lack studies on how climate change might alter the phenology of soil invertebrates as well as how this can subsequently affect ecosystem functions.
18 show abstract
0169-5347 * * 27991974
Publication date: Available online 9 October 2018

Source: Trends in Ecology & Evolution
Author(s): Miklós Bálint, Markus Pfenninger, Hans-Peter Grossart, Pierre Taberlet, Mark Vellend, Mathew A. Leibold, Göran Englund, Diana Bowler

Ecological communities change in time and space, but long-term dynamics at the century-to-millennia scale are poorly documented due to lack of relevant data sets. Nevertheless, understanding long-term dynamics is important for explaining present-day biodiversity patterns and placing conservation goals in a historical context. Here, we use recent examples and new perspectives to highlight how environmental DNA (eDNA) is starting to provide a powerful new source of temporal data for research questions that have so far been overlooked, by helping to resolve the ecological dynamics of populations, communities, and ecosystems over hundreds to thousands of years. We give examples of hypotheses that may be addressed by temporal eDNA biodiversity data, discuss possible research directions, and outline related challenges.
19 show abstract
0169-5347 * * 28048320
Publication date: Available online 16 October 2018

Source: Trends in Ecology & Evolution
Author(s): Frank Götmark, Philip Cafaro, Jane O’Sullivan

As the nations of the world grapple with the task of creating sustainable societies, ending and in some cases reversing population growth will be necessary to succeed. Yet stable or declining populations are typically reported in the media as a problem, or even a crisis, due to demographic aging. This is misguided, as economic analyses show that the costs connected with aging societies are manageable, while the economic, social, and environmental benefits of smaller populations are substantial. Earth’s human-carrying capacity has been exceeded; hence, population growth must end and aging societies are unavoidable. They should be embraced as part of a just and prosperous future for people and the other species with whom we share our planet.
20 show abstract
0169-5347 * * 28103581
Publication date: Available online 19 October 2018

Source: Trends in Ecology & Evolution
Author(s): Angela N. Theodosopoulos, Amanda K. Hund, Scott A. Taylor

Species barriers are tested in hybrid zones when gene flow occurs between hybridizing species. Hybridization can erode species barriers, lead to the introgression of adaptive traits, or remain stable through time. Outcomes in hybrid zones are influenced by divergence between the hybridizing taxa, behavior, ecology, and geography. Parasites and pathogens play a major role in host fitness and appear to have varied impacts on species barriers in hybrid zones. We comprehensively reviewed the literature on parasitism in animal hybrid zones and present an evolutionary framework within which to consider parasite–hybrid interactions. Parasites most frequently show potential to contribute to species barrier breakdown in hybrid zones, but also frequently show potential to facilitate the maintenance of species barriers. Incorporating eco-immunology, parasite community theory, and spatiotemporal approaches will be important as genomic tools allow researchers to examine parasites and hybrid zones at greater resolution and in a diversity of natural habitats.
21 show abstract
0169-5347 * * 28136109
Publication date: November 2018

Source: Trends in Ecology & Evolution, Volume 33, Issue 11
22 show abstract
0169-5347 * * 28136110
Publication date: Available online 24 October 2018

Source: Trends in Ecology & Evolution
Author(s): Kevin J. Gaston, Masashi Soga, James P. Duffy, Joanne K. Garrett, Sian Gaston, Daniel T.C. Cox

The field of ecology has focused on understanding characteristics of natural systems in a manner as free as possible from biases of human observers. However, demand is growing for knowledge of human–nature interactions at the level of individual people. This is particularly driven by concerns around human health consequences due to changes in positive and negative interactions. This requires attention to the biased ways in which people encounter and experience other organisms. Here we define such a ‘personalised ecology’, and discuss its connections to other aspects of the field. We propose a framework of focal research topics, shaped by whether the unit of analysis is a single person, a single population, or multiple populations, and whether a human or nature perspective is foremost.
23 show abstract
0169-5347 * * 28136111
Publication date: Available online 22 October 2018

Source: Trends in Ecology & Evolution
Author(s): Mark Pagel
24 show abstract
0169-5347 * * 28164344
Publication date: Available online 26 October 2018

Source: Trends in Ecology & Evolution
Author(s): Leonardo Campagna, Trevor D. Price
25 show abstract
0169-5347 * * 28192727
Publication date: Available online 29 October 2018

Source: Trends in Ecology & Evolution
Author(s): Ove Hoegh-Guldberg, Emma V. Kennedy, Hawthorne L. Beyer, Caleb McClennen, Hugh P. Possingham

Rapid ocean warming as a result of climate change poses a key risk for coral reefs. Even if the goals of the Paris Climate Agreement are achieved, coral reefs are likely to decline by 70–90% relative to their current abundance by midcentury. Although alarming, coral communities that survive will play a key role in the regeneration of reefs by mid-to-late century. Here, we argue for a coordinated, global coral reef conservation strategy that is centred on 50 large (500 km2) regions that are the least vulnerable to climate change and which are positioned to facilitate future coral reef regeneration. The proposed strategy and actions should strengthen and expand existing conservation efforts for coral reefs as we face the long-term consequences of intensifying climate change.
26 show abstract
0169-5347 * * 28192728
Publication date: Available online 28 October 2018

Source: Trends in Ecology & Evolution
Author(s): Rebecca A. Boulton, Marlene Zuk, David M. Shuker

Polyandry, or multiple mating by females with different males, is commonplace. One explanation is that females engage in convenience polyandry, mating multiple times to reduce the costs of sexual harassment. Although the logic underlying convenience polyandry is clear, and harassment often seems to influence mating outcomes, it has not been subjected to as thorough theoretical or empirical attention as other explanations for polyandry. We re-examine here convenience polyandry in the light of new studies demonstrating previously unconsidered benefits of polyandry. We suggest that true convenience polyandry is likely to be a fleeting phenomenon, even though it can profoundly shape mating-system evolution via potential feedback loops between resistance to males and the costs and benefits of mating.
27 show abstract
0169-5347 * * 28221542
Publication date: Available online 2 November 2018

Source: Trends in Ecology & Evolution
Author(s): Dustin J. Marshall, Craig R. White

Theories of growth have a long history in biology. Two major branches of theory (mechanistic and phenomenological) describe the dynamics of growth and explain variation in the size of organisms. Both theory branches usually assume that reproductive output scales proportionately with body size, in other words that reproductive output is isometric. A meta-analysis of hundreds of marine fishes contradicts this assumption, larger mothers reproduce disproportionately more in 95% of species studied, and patterns in other taxa suggest that reproductive hyperallometry is widespread. We argue here that reproductive hyperallometry represents a profound challenge to mechanistic theories of growth in particular, and that they should be revised accordingly. We suspect that hyperallometric reproduction drives growth trajectories in ways that are largely unanticipated by current theories.
28 show abstract
0169-5347 * * 28299505
Publication date: Available online 8 November 2018

Source: Trends in Ecology & Evolution
Author(s): Sylvie Estrela, Eric Libby, Jeremy Van Cleve, Florence Débarre, Maxime Deforet, William R. Harcombe, Jorge Peña, Sam P. Brown, Michael E. Hochberg

By consuming and producing environmental resources, organisms inevitably change their habitats. The consequences of such environmental modifications can be detrimental or beneficial not only to the focal organism but also to other organisms sharing the same environment. Social evolution theory has been very influential in studying how social interactions mediated by public ‘goods’ or ‘bads’ evolve by emphasizing the role of spatial structure. The environmental dimensions driving these interactions, however, are typically abstracted away. We propose here a new, environment-mediated taxonomy of social behaviors where organisms are categorized by their production or consumption of environmental factors that can help or harm others in the environment. We discuss microbial examples of our classification and highlight the importance of environmental intermediates more generally.
29 show abstract
0169-5347 * * 28370891
Publication date: Available online 14 November 2018

Source: Trends in Ecology & Evolution
Author(s): Heikki Helanterä
30 show abstract
0169-5347 * * 28370892
Publication date: Available online 13 November 2018

Source: Trends in Ecology & Evolution
Author(s): Piero Amodio, Markus Boeckle, Alexandra K. Schnell, Ljerka Ostojić, Graziano Fiorito, Nicola S. Clayton

Intelligence in large-brained vertebrates might have evolved through independent, yet similar processes based on comparable socioecological pressures and slow life histories. This convergent evolutionary route, however, cannot explain why cephalopods developed large brains and flexible behavioural repertoires: cephalopods have fast life histories and live in simple social environments. Here, we suggest that the loss of the external shell in cephalopods (i) caused a dramatic increase in predatory pressure, which in turn prevented the emergence of slow life histories, and (ii) allowed the exploitation of novel challenging niches, thus favouring the emergence of intelligence. By highlighting convergent and divergent aspects between cephalopods and large-brained vertebrates we illustrate how the evolution of intelligence might not be constrained to a single evolutionary route.
31 show abstract
0169-5347 * * 28370893
Publication date: Available online 13 November 2018

Source: Trends in Ecology & Evolution
Author(s): Leonard V. Polishchuk, Julia L. Blanchard

Science is a search for patterns but there are few cross-habitat patterns in ecology. We propose key questions following the findings of consistent scaling of abundance versus body mass from bacteria to earthworms and whales, based on an almost forgotten study of soils and a well-known one from the open ocean.
32 show abstract
0169-5347 * * 28404053
Publication date: December 2018

Source: Trends in Ecology & Evolution, Volume 33, Issue 12
33 show abstract
0169-5347 * * 28404054
Publication date: Available online 15 November 2018

Source: Trends in Ecology & Evolution
Author(s): Alex Fajardo, Eliot J.B. McIntire, Mark E. Olson

With their imposing grandeur, the small number of very tall tree species attract a disproportionate amount of scientific study. We right this bias by focusing here on the shorter trees, which often grow in the shade of the giants and many other places besides. That tall trees are so restricted in distribution indicates that there are far more habitats available for small trees. We discuss some leading candidates for the mechanisms that limit maximum plant height in any given habitat, as well as why every habitat has a range of plant sizes. At least two attributes – greater adaptation capacity and higher drought resistance – suggest that the forests of the future belong to short trees.
34 show abstract
0169-5347 * * 28404055
Publication date: Available online 15 November 2018

Source: Trends in Ecology & Evolution
Author(s): Lindsey Gillson, Harry Biggs, Izak P.J. Smit, Malika Virah-Sawmy, Kevin Rogers

Adaptive management (AM) and evidence-based conservation (EBC) have emerged as major decision-making frameworks for conservation management. AM deals with complexity and the importance of local context in making conservation decisions under conditions of high variability, uncertainty, and rapid environmental and social change. EBC seeks for generality from empirical data and aims to develop and enhance best practice. The goal of this review is to explore opportunities for finding common ground between AM and EBC. We propose a framework for distinguishing the subset of conservation problems that are amenable to an evidence-based approach, based on levels of uncertainty, complexity, and social agreement. We then suggest ways for combining multiple lines of evidence and developing greater opportunities for iteration and co-learning in EBC.
35 show abstract
0169-5347 * * 28499755
Publication date: Available online 26 November 2018

Source: Trends in Ecology & Evolution
Author(s): Adam B. Smith, William Godsoe, Francisco Rodríguez-Sánchez, Hsiao-Hsuan Wang, Dan Warren

Ecological niches reflect not only adaptation to local circumstances but also the tendency of related lineages to share environmental tolerances. As a result, information on phylogenetic relationships has underappreciated potential to inform ecological niche modeling. Here we review three strategies for incorporating evolutionary information into niche models: splitting lineages into subunits, lumping across lineages, and partial pooling of lineages into a common statistical framework that implicitly or explicitly accounts for evolutionary relationships. We challenge the default practice of modeling at the species level, which ignores the process of niche evolution and erroneously assumes that the species is always the appropriate level for niche estimation. Progress in the field requires reexamination of how we assess models of niches versus models of distributions.
36 show abstract
0169-5347 * * 28582878
Publication date: Available online 1 December 2018

Source: Trends in Ecology & Evolution
Author(s): Cang Hui, David M. Richardson

Invasion science is in a state of paradox, having low predictability despite strong, identifiable covariates of invasion performance. We propose shifting the foundation metaphor of biological invasions from a linear filtering scheme to one that invokes complex adaptive networks. We link invasion performance and invasibility directly to the loss of network stability and indirectly to network topology through constraints from the emergence of the stability criterion in complex systems. We propose the wind vane of an invaded network – the major axis of its adjacency matrix – which reveals how species respond dynamically to invasions. We suggest that invasion ecology should steer away from comparative macroecological studies, to rather explore the ecological network centred on the focal species.
37 show abstract
0169-5347 * * 28582879
Publication date: Available online 1 December 2018

Source: Trends in Ecology & Evolution
Author(s): Emily Nicholson, Elizabeth A. Fulton, Thomas M. Brooks, Ryan Blanchard, Paul Leadley, Jean Paul Metzger, Karel Mokany, Simone Stevenson, Brendan A. Wintle, Skipton N.C. Woolley, Megan Barnes, James E.M. Watson, Simon Ferrier

Global biodiversity targets have far-reaching implications for nature conservation worldwide. Scenarios and models hold unfulfilled promise for ensuring such targets are well founded and implemented; here, we review how they can and should inform the Aichi Targets of the Strategic Plan for Biodiversity and their reformulation. They offer two clear benefits: providing a scientific basis for the wording and quantitative elements of targets; and identifying synergies and trade-offs by accounting for interactions between targets and the actions needed to achieve them. The capacity of scenarios and models to address complexity makes them invaluable for developing meaningful targets and policy, and improving conservation outcomes.
38 show abstract
0169-5347 * * 28582880
Publication date: Available online 30 November 2018

Source: Trends in Ecology & Evolution
Author(s): David Kleijn, Riccardo Bommarco, Thijs P.M. Fijen, Lucas A. Garibaldi, Simon G. Potts, Wim H. van der Putten

There is worldwide concern about the environmental costs of conventional intensification of agriculture. Growing evidence suggests that ecological intensification of mainstream farming can safeguard food production, with accompanying environmental benefits; however, the approach is rarely adopted by farmers. Our review of the evidence for replacing external inputs with ecosystem services shows that scientists tend to focus on processes (e.g., pollination) rather than outcomes (e.g., profits), and express benefits at spatio-temporal scales that are not always relevant to farmers. This results in mismatches in perceived benefits of ecological intensification between scientists and farmers, which hinders its uptake. We provide recommendations for overcoming these mismatches and highlight important additional factors driving uptake of nature-based management practices, such as social acceptability of farming.
39 show abstract
0169-5347 * * 28626051
Publication date: Available online 4 December 2018

Source: Trends in Ecology & Evolution
Author(s): Nianpeng He, Congcong Liu, Shilong Piao, Lawren Sack, Li Xu, Yiqi Luo, Jinsheng He, Xingguo Han, Guangsheng Zhou, Xuhui Zhou, Yi Lin, Qiang Yu, Shirong Liu, Wei Sun, Shuli Niu, Shenggong Li, Jiahui Zhang, Guirui Yu

As the range of studies on macroecology and functional traits expands, integration of traits into higher-level approaches offers new opportunities to improve clarification of larger-scale patterns and their mechanisms and predictions using models. Here, we propose a framework for quantifying ‘ecosystem traits’ and means to address the challenges of broadening the applicability of functional traits to macroecology. Ecosystem traits are traits or quantitative characteristics of organisms (plants, animals, and microbes) at the community level expressed as the intensity (or density) normalized per unit land area. Ecosystem traits can inter-relate and integrate data from field trait surveys, eddy-flux observation, remote sensing, and ecological models, and thereby provide new resolution of the responses and feedback at regional to global scale.
40 show abstract
0169-5347 * * 28626052
Publication date: Available online 4 December 2018

Source: Trends in Ecology & Evolution
Author(s): Kathryn E. Barry, Liesje Mommer, Jasper van Ruijven, Christian Wirth, Alexandra J. Wright, Yongfei Bai, John Connolly, Gerlinde B. De Deyn, Hans de Kroon, Forest Isbell, Alexandru Milcu, Christiane Roscher, Michael Scherer-Lorenzen, Bernhard Schmid, Alexandra Weigelt

Evidence suggests that biodiversity supports ecosystem functioning. Yet, the mechanisms driving this relationship remain unclear. Complementarity is one common explanation for these positive biodiversity–ecosystem functioning relationships. Yet, complementarity is often indirectly quantified as overperformance in mixture relative to monoculture (e.g., ‘complementarity effect’). This overperformance is then attributed to the intuitive idea of complementarity or, more specifically, to species resource partitioning. Locally, however, several unassociated causes may drive this overperformance. Here, we differentiate complementarity into three types of species differences that may cause enhanced ecosystem functioning in more diverse ecosystems: (i) resource partitioning, (ii) abiotic facilitation, and (iii) biotic feedbacks. We argue that disentangling these three causes is crucial for predicting the response of ecosystems to future biodiversity loss.
41 show abstract
0169-5347 * * 28661012
Publication date: Available online 7 December 2018

Source: Trends in Ecology & Evolution
Author(s): Rita Covas, Claire Doutrelant

Theoretical models show that sexual and social selection can stabilise cooperation. However, field tests of these mechanisms have been difficult to conduct and the results are mixed. We discuss the conceptual and practical difficulties associated with testing the role of social and sexual selection on cooperation and argue that there are alternative ways of examining these hypotheses. Specifically, approaches based on the classic theories of sexual selection and signalling, and recent developments in the field of behavioural syndromes, provide mechanisms to insure the reliability of cooperation. In addition, methodological developments (social networks and microtracking) and long-term datasets, allow measuring partner choice in a cooperation context and the resulting fitness benefits for both the cooperators and the individuals that associate with them.

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Journal Citation Reports (2017)

Impact factor: 15.938
Q1 (Ecology (1/158))
Q1 (Evolutionary Biology (1/49))
Q1 (Genetics & Heredity (3/171))

Scopus Journal Metrics (2017)

SJR: 8.634
SNIP: 4.485
Impact (Scopus CiteScore): 1.035
Quartile: Q1
CiteScore percentile: 99%
CiteScore rank: 5 out of 561
Cited by WUR staff: 1303 times. (2014-2016)

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