Staff Publications

Staff Publications

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    'Staff publications' is the digital repository of Wageningen University & Research

    'Staff publications' contains references to publications authored by Wageningen University staff from 1976 onward.

    Publications authored by the staff of the Research Institutes are available from 1995 onwards.

    Full text documents are added when available. The database is updated daily and currently holds about 240,000 items, of which 72,000 in open access.

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    Data from: Rapid plastic breeding response to rain matches peak prey abundance in a tropical savannah bird
    Hidalgo Aranzamendi, Nataly ; Hall, Michelle L. ; Kingma, Sjouke ; Pol, Martijn van de; Peters, Anne - \ 2019
    Dryad
    trophic interactions - annual cycle - tropics - phenology - Timing of reproduction - Phenotypic Plasticity - avian life-history - unpredictable environment - Malurus coronatus
    1. Changes in climate are shifting the timing of life cycle events in the natural world. Compared to northern-temperate areas, these effects are relatively poorly understood in tropical and southern regions, where there is limited information on how timing of breeding and food availability are affected by climatic factors, and where patterns of breeding activity are more unpredictable within and between years. 2. Combining a new statistical modelling approach with 5 years of continuous individual-based monitoring of a monsoonal tropical insectivorous bird, we quantified (i) the proximate climatic drivers at two trophic levels: timing of breeding and abundance of arthropod prey; (ii) the effect of climate variation on reproductive output and (iii) the role of individual plasticity. 3. Rainfall was identified as the main determinant of phenology at both trophic levels. Throughout the year, likelihood of egg laying increased very rapidly in response to even small amounts of rain during the preceding 0-3 weeks. Adult body mass and male sperm storage also increased rapidly after rain, suggesting high breeding preparedness. Additionally, females were flexible, since they were more likely to nest if their previous attempt was longer ago and unsuccessful. Arthropod abundance also increased after rainfall, but more slowly, with a peak around 10 weeks. Therefore, the peak food availability coincided with the presence of dependent fledglings. 4. Fitness benefits of nesting after more rain appeared to be linked to offspring quantity rather than quality: nest attempts following higher rainfall produced larger clutches, but showed no improvement in nestling mass or relative fledging success. The response of clutch size to rainfall was plastic, since repeated sampling showed that individual females laid larger clutches after more rain, possibly mediated by improved body mass. 5. Rapid, individually flexible breeding in response to rainfall and slower increase in arthropod abundance also as a response to rainfall, might buffer insectivorous species living in tropical seasonal environments from climate-change induced phenological trophic mismatches.
    Rapid plastic breeding response to rain matches peak prey abundance in a tropical savanna bird
    Hidalgo Aranzamendi, Nataly ; Hall, Michelle L. ; Kingma, Sjouke A. ; Pol, Martijn van de; Peters, Anne - \ 2019
    Journal of Animal Ecology 88 (2019)11. - ISSN 0021-8790 - p. 1799 - 1811.
    annual cycle - avian life-history - phenology - phenotypic plasticity - timing of reproduction - trophic interactions - tropics - unpredictable environment

    Changes in climate are shifting the timing of life cycle events in the natural world. Compared to northern temperate areas, these effects are relatively poorly understood in tropical and southern regions, where there is limited information on how timing of breeding and food availability are affected by climatic factors, and where patterns of breeding activity are more unpredictable within and between years. Combining a new statistical modelling approach with 5 years of continuous individual-based monitoring of a monsoonal tropical insectivorous bird, we quantified (a) the proximate climatic drivers at two trophic levels: timing of breeding and abundance of arthropod prey; (b) the effect of climate variation on reproductive output and (c) the role of individual plasticity. Rainfall was identified as the main determinant of phenology at both trophic levels. Throughout the year, likelihood of egg laying increased very rapidly in response to even small amounts of rain during the preceding 0–3 weeks. Adult body mass and male sperm storage also increased rapidly after rain, suggesting high breeding preparedness. Additionally, females were flexible, since they were more likely to nest whether their previous attempt was longer ago and unsuccessful. Arthropod abundance also increased after rainfall, but more slowly, with a peak around 10 weeks. Therefore, the peak food availability coincided with the presence of dependent fledglings. Fitness benefits of nesting after more rain appeared to be linked to offspring quantity rather than quality: nest attempts following higher rainfall produced larger clutches, but showed no improvement in nestling mass or relative fledging success. The response of clutch size to rainfall was plastic, since repeated sampling showed that individual females laid larger clutches after more rain, possibly mediated by improved body mass. Rapid, individually flexible breeding in response to rainfall and slower increase in arthropod abundance also as a response to rainfall, might buffer insectivorous species living in tropical seasonal environments from climate change-induced phenological trophic mismatches.

    Using FLUXNET data to improve models of springtime vegetation activity onset in forest ecosystems
    Melaas, E. ; Richardson, A. ; Friedl, M. ; Dragoni, D. ; Gough, C. ; Herbst, M. ; Montagnani, L. ; Moors, E.J. - \ 2013
    Agricultural and Forest Meteorology 171-172 (2013). - ISSN 0168-1923 - p. 46 - 56.
    terrestrial biosphere model - deciduous forest - co2 exchange - temperate regions - soil-temperature - phenology model - carbon-dioxide - annual cycle - bud-burst - trees
    Vegetation phenology is sensitive to climate change and variability, and is a first order control on the carbon budget of forest ecosystems. Robust representation of phenology is therefore needed to support model-based projections of how climate change will affect ecosystem function. A variety of models have been developed to predict species or site-specific phenology of trees. However, extension of these models to other sites or species has proven difficult. Using meteorological and eddy covariance data for 29 forest sites (encompassing 173 site-years), we evaluated the accuracy with which 11 different models were able to simulate, as a function of air temperature and photoperiod, spatial and temporal variability in the onset of spring photosynthetic activity. In parallel, we also evaluated the accuracy with which dynamics in remotely sensed vegetation indices from MODIS captured the timing of spring onset. To do this, we used a subset of sites in the FLUXNET La Thuile database located in evergreen needleleaf and deciduous broadleaf forests with distinct active and dormant seasons and where temperature is the primary driver of seasonality. As part of this analysis we evaluated predictions from refined versions of the 11 original models that include parameterizations for geographic variation in both thermal and photoperiod constraints on phenology. Results from cross-validation analysis show that the refined models predict the onset of spring photosynthetic activity with significantly higher accuracy than the original models. Estimates for the timing of spring onset from MODIS were highly correlated with the onset of photosynthesis derived from flux measurements, but were biased late for needleleaf sites. Our results demonstrate that simple phenology models can be used to predict the timing of spring photosynthetic onset both across sites and across years at individual sites. By extension, these models provide an improved basis for predicting how the phenology and carbon budgets of temperature-limited forest ecosystems may change in the coming decades.
    Changes in body mass and hormone levels between wintering and spring staging areas in dark-bellied brent geese Branta bernicla bernicla
    Poisbleau, M. ; Fritz, H. ; Lambrechts, M.M. ; Trouvé, C. ; Ebbinge, B.S. - \ 2006
    Journal of Avian Biology 37 (2006)2. - ISSN 0908-8857 - p. 143 - 148.
    challenge hypothesis - thyroid-hormone - social inertia - annual cycle - anser-anser - testosterone - reproduction - reserves - aggression - endocrine
    We document seasonal changes in body mass and plasma hormone levels (testosterone and triiodothyronine) between winter and spring quarters in dark-bellied brent geese Branta bernicla bernicla. Body mass increased between winter and spring, whereas body size was the same for the birds sampled in winter and those in spring. Adults and males were larger and heavier than juveniles and females. Plasma testosterone levels did not differ significantly between winter and spring, and did not vary with sex, age and morphometry. Plasma triiodothyronine (T3) levels were significantly higher in spring than in winter, and were higher for males than for females. However, T3 levels did not vary significantly with age and body measurements. To explain the findings, we discuss potential impacts of social dominance
    Performance of HIRLAM in a semiarid heterogeneous region: Evaluation of the land surface and boundary layer description using EFEDA observations
    Jochum, A.M. ; Camino, E.R. ; Debruin, H.A.R. ; Holtslag, A.A.M. - \ 2004
    Monthly Weather Review 132 (2004)12. - ISSN 0027-0644 - p. 2745 - 2760.
    aerosol optical depth - low-level parameters - soil-moisture - ecmwf model - sequential assimilation - meteorological models - atmospheric moisture - field experiment - climate models - annual cycle
    Observations from the European Field Experiment in a Desertification-threatened Area (EFEDA) are used to evaluate the performance of the radiation, land surface, and boundary layer description of the numerical weather prediction (NWP) system High-Resolution Limited Area Model (HIRLAM) in semiarid conditions. Model analysis and 6-h forecast data of the fully coupled three-dimensional model are compared with the comprehensive dataset of a case study representing a sample of 22 days of anticyclonic conditions. Distributed micrometeorological surface stations, radiosondes, flux aircraft, and airborne lidar provide a unique validation dataset of the diurnal cycle of surface and boundary layer processes. The model surface, soil, and boundary layer are found to be too moist and slightly too cold during most of the diurnal cycle. The model radiation and surface energy budgets are biased toward more humid conditions. Model shortcomings are identified essentially in four areas. These are the moisture data assimilation, the land-use and soil classification with its associated physiographic database, the aerosol parameterization in the radiation code, and the boundary layer vertical resolution and entrainment description. Practical steps for immediate improvement of the model performance are proposed. They focus on the use of a land-use and soil classification and physiographic database adapted to Mediterranean landscapes, in combination with the inclusion of aerosol parameters in the radiation scheme, that account for the typically higher aerosol load of arid and semiarid environments.
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