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Proceedings. Biological Sciences

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https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/28202817/adaptive-shaping-of-the-behavioural-and-neuroendocrine-phenotype-during-adolescence
#1
Tobias D Zimmermann, Sylvia Kaiser, Michael B Hennessy, Norbert Sachser
Environmental conditions during early life can adaptively shape the phenotype for the prevailing environment. Recently, it has been suggested that adolescence represents an additional temporal window for adaptive developmental plasticity, though supporting evidence is scarce. Previous work has shown that male guinea pigs living in large mixed-sex colonies develop a low-aggressive phenotype as part of a queuing strategy that is adaptive for integrating into large unfamiliar colonies. By contrast, males living in pairs during adolescence become highly aggressive towards strangers...
February 22, 2017: Proceedings. Biological Sciences
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/28202816/human-visual-search-behaviour-is-far-from-ideal
#2
Anna Nowakowska, Alasdair D F Clarke, Amelia R Hunt
Evolutionary pressures have made foraging behaviours highly efficient in many species. Eye movements during search present a useful instance of foraging behaviour in humans. We tested the efficiency of eye movements during search using homogeneous and heterogeneous arrays of line segments. The search target is visible in the periphery on the homogeneous array, but requires central vision to be detected on the heterogeneous array. For a compound search array that is heterogeneous on one side and homogeneous on the other, eye movements should be directed only to the heterogeneous side...
February 22, 2017: Proceedings. Biological Sciences
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/28202815/covariation-in-levels-of-nucleotide-diversity-in-homologous-regions-of-the-avian-genome-long-after-completion-of-lineage-sorting
#3
Ludovic Dutoit, Nagarjun Vijay, Carina F Mugal, Christen M Bossu, Reto Burri, Jochen Wolf, Hans Ellegren
Closely related species may show similar levels of genetic diversity in homologous regions of the genome owing to shared ancestral variation still segregating in the extant species. However, after completion of lineage sorting, such covariation is not necessarily expected. On the other hand, if the processes that govern genetic diversity are conserved, diversity may potentially covary even among distantly related species. We mapped regions of conserved synteny between the genomes of two divergent bird species-collared flycatcher and hooded crow-and identified more than 600 Mb of homologous regions (66% of the genome)...
February 22, 2017: Proceedings. Biological Sciences
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/28202814/early-mortality-saves-energy-estimating-the-energetic-cost-of-excess-offspring-in-a-seabird
#4
Oscar Vedder, He Zhang, Sandra Bouwhuis
Offspring are often produced in excess as insurance against stochastic events or unpredictable resources. This strategy may result in high early-life mortality, yet age-specific mortality before offspring independence and its associated costs have rarely been quantified. In this study, we modelled age-specific survival from hatching to fledging using 24 years of data on hatching order (HO), growth and age of mortality of more than 15 000 common tern (Sterna hirundo) chicks. We found that mortality peaked directly after hatching, after which it declined rapidly...
February 22, 2017: Proceedings. Biological Sciences
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/28202813/female-fecundity-variation-affects-reproducibility-of-experiments-on-host-plant-preference-and-acceptance-in-a-phytophagous-insect
#5
Alexander Schäpers, Hampus Petrén, Christopher W Wheat, Christer Wiklund, Magne Friberg
Reproducibility is a scientific cornerstone. Many recent studies, however, describe a reproducibility crisis and call for assessments of reproducibility across scientific domains. Here, we explore the reproducibility of a classic ecological experiment-that of assessing female host plant preference and acceptance in phytophagous insects, a group in which host specialization is a key driver of diversification. We exposed multiple cohorts of Pieris napi butterflies from the same population to traditional host acceptance and preference tests on three Brassicaceae host species...
February 22, 2017: Proceedings. Biological Sciences
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/28202812/three-dimensional-trajectories-and-network-analyses-of-group-behaviour-within-chimney-swift-flocks-during-approaches-to-the-roost
#6
Dennis J Evangelista, Dylan D Ray, Sathish K Raja, Tyson L Hedrick
Chimney swifts (Chaetura pelagica) are highly manoeuvrable birds notable for roosting overnight in chimneys, in groups of hundreds or thousands of birds, before and during their autumn migration. At dusk, birds gather in large numbers from surrounding areas near a roost site. The whole flock then employs an orderly, but dynamic, circling approach pattern before rapidly entering a small aperture en masse We recorded the three-dimensional trajectories of ≈1 800 individual birds during a 30 min period encompassing flock formation, circling, and landing, and used these trajectories to test several hypotheses relating to flock or group behaviour...
February 22, 2017: Proceedings. Biological Sciences
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/28202811/small-birds-big-effects-the-little-auk-alle-alle-transforms-high-arctic-ecosystems
#7
Ivan González-Bergonzoni, Kasper L Johansen, Anders Mosbech, Frank Landkildehus, Erik Jeppesen, Thomas A Davidson
In some arctic areas, marine-derived nutrients (MDN) resulting from fish migrations fuel freshwater and terrestrial ecosystems, increasing primary production and biodiversity. Less is known, however, about the role of seabird-MDN in shaping ecosystems. Here, we examine how the most abundant seabird in the North Atlantic, the little auk (Alle alle), alters freshwater and terrestrial ecosystems around the North Water Polynya (NOW) in Greenland. We compare stable isotope ratios (δ(15)N and δ(13)C) of freshwater and terrestrial biota, terrestrial vegetation indices and physical-chemical properties, productivity and community structure of fresh waters in catchments with and without little auk colonies...
February 22, 2017: Proceedings. Biological Sciences
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/28202810/how-numbers-of-nesting-sea-turtles-can-be-overestimated-by-nearly-a-factor-of-two
#8
Nicole Esteban, Jeanne A Mortimer, Graeme C Hays
Estimating the absolute number of individuals in populations and their fecundity is central to understanding the ecosystem role of species and their population dynamics as well as allowing informed conservation management for endangered species. Estimates of abundance and fecundity are often difficult to obtain for rare or cryptic species. Yet, in addition, here we show for a charismatic group, sea turtles, that are neither cryptic nor rare and whose nesting is easy to observe, that the traditional approach of direct observations of nesting has likely led to a gross overestimation of the number of individuals in populations and underestimation of their fecundity...
February 22, 2017: Proceedings. Biological Sciences
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/28202809/mammal-body-size-evolution-in-north-america-and-europe-over-20-myr-similar-trends-generated-by-different-processes
#9
Shan Huang, Jussi T Eronen, Christine M Janis, Juha J Saarinen, Daniele Silvestro, Susanne A Fritz
Because body size interacts with many fundamental biological properties of a species, body size evolution can be an essential component of the generation and maintenance of biodiversity. Here we investigate how body size evolution can be linked to the clade-specific diversification dynamics in different geographical regions. We analyse an extensive body size dataset of Neogene large herbivores (covering approx. 50% of the 970 species in the orders Artiodactyla and Perissodactyla) in Europe and North America in a Bayesian framework...
February 22, 2017: Proceedings. Biological Sciences
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/28202808/a-broad-scale-comparison-of-aerobic-activity-levels-in-vertebrates-endotherms-versus-ectotherms
#10
James F Gillooly, Juan Pablo Gomez, Evgeny V Mavrodiev
Differences in the limits and range of aerobic activity levels between endotherms and ectotherms remain poorly understood, though such differences help explain basic differences in species' lifestyles (e.g. movement patterns, feeding modes, and interaction rates). We compare the limits and range of aerobic activity in endotherms (birds and mammals) and ectotherms (fishes, reptiles, and amphibians) by evaluating the body mass-dependence of VO2 max, aerobic scope, and heart mass in a phylogenetic context based on a newly constructed vertebrate supertree...
February 22, 2017: Proceedings. Biological Sciences
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/28202807/the-genetics-of-mate-preferences-in-hybrids-between-two-young-and-sympatric-lake-victoria-cichlid-species
#11
Ola Svensson, Katie Woodhouse, Cock van Oosterhout, Alan Smith, George F Turner, Ole Seehausen
The genetic architecture of mate preferences is likely to affect significant evolutionary processes, including speciation and hybridization. Here, we investigate laboratory hybrids between a pair of sympatric Lake Victoria cichlid fish species that appear to have recently evolved from a hybrid population between similar predecessor species. The species demonstrate strong assortative mating in the laboratory, associated with divergent male breeding coloration (red dorsum versus blue). We show in a common garden experiment, using DNA-based paternity testing, that the strong female mate preferences among males of the two species are fully recovered in a large fraction of their F2 hybrid generation...
February 22, 2017: Proceedings. Biological Sciences
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/28202806/signals-cues-and-the-nature-of-mimicry
#12
REVIEW
Gabriel A Jamie
'Mimicry' is used in the evolutionary and ecological literature to describe diverse phenomena. Many are textbook examples of natural selection's power to produce stunning adaptations. However, there remains a lack of clarity over how mimetic resemblances are conceptually related to each other. The result is that categories denoting the traditional subdivisions of mimicry are applied inconsistently across studies, hindering attempts at conceptual unification. This review critically examines the logic by which mimicry can be conceptually organized and analysed...
February 22, 2017: Proceedings. Biological Sciences
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/28179522/landscape-context-alters-cost-of-living-in-honeybee-metabolism-and-feeding
#13
Sean Tomlinson, Kingsley W Dixon, Raphael K Didham, S Donald Bradshaw
Field metabolic rate (FMR) links the energy budget of an animal with the constraints of its ecosystem, but is particularly difficult to measure for small organisms. Landscape degradation exacerbates environmental adversity and reduces resource availability, imposing higher costs of living for many organisms. Here, we report a significant effect of landscape degradation on the FMR of free-flying Apis mellifera, estimated using (86)Rb radio-isotopic turnover. We validated the relationship between (86)Rb kb and metabolic rate for worker bees in the laboratory using flow-through respirometry...
February 8, 2017: Proceedings. Biological Sciences
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/28179521/egg-discrimination-along-a-gradient-of-natural-variation-in-eggshell-coloration
#14
Daniel Hanley, Tomáš Grim, Branislav Igic, Peter Samaš, Analía V López, Matthew D Shawkey, Mark E Hauber
Accurate recognition of salient cues is critical for adaptive responses, but the underlying sensory and cognitive processes are often poorly understood. For example, hosts of avian brood parasites have long been assumed to reject foreign eggs from their nests based on the total degree of dissimilarity in colour to their own eggs, regardless of the foreign eggs' colours. We tested hosts' responses to gradients of natural (blue-green to brown) and artificial (green to purple) egg colours, and demonstrate that hosts base rejection decisions on both the direction and degree of colour dissimilarity along the natural, but not artificial, gradient of egg colours...
February 8, 2017: Proceedings. Biological Sciences
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/28179520/population-viability-at-extreme-sex-ratio-skews-produced-by-temperature-dependent-sex-determination
#15
Graeme C Hays, Antonios D Mazaris, Gail Schofield, Jacques-Olivier Laloë
For species with temperature-dependent sex determination (TSD) there is the fear that rising temperatures may lead to single-sex populations and population extinction. We show that for sea turtles, a major group exhibiting TSD, these concerns are currently unfounded but may become important under extreme climate warming scenarios. We show how highly female-biased sex ratios in developing eggs translate into much more balanced operational sex ratios so that adult male numbers in populations around the world are unlikely to be limiting...
February 8, 2017: Proceedings. Biological Sciences
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/28179519/low-frequency-hearing-preceded-the-evolution-of-giant-body-size-and-filter-feeding-in-baleen-whales
#16
Travis Park, Alistair R Evans, Stephen J Gallagher, Erich M G Fitzgerald
Living baleen whales (mysticetes) produce and hear the lowest-frequency (infrasonic) sounds among mammals. There is currently debate over whether the ancestor of crown cetaceans (Neoceti) was able to detect low frequencies. However, the lack of information on the most archaic fossil mysticetes has prevented us from determining the earliest evolution of their extreme acoustic biology. Here, we report the first anatomical analyses and frequency range estimation of the inner ear in Oligocene (34-23 Ma) fossils of archaic toothed mysticetes from Australia and the USA...
February 8, 2017: Proceedings. Biological Sciences
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/28179518/computational-biomechanics-changes-our-view-on-insect-head-evolution
#17
Alexander Blanke, Peter J Watson, Richard Holbrey, Michael J Fagan
Despite large-scale molecular attempts, the relationships of the basal winged insect lineages dragonflies, mayflies and neopterans, are still unresolved. Other data sources, such as morphology, suffer from unclear functional dependencies of the structures considered, which might mislead phylogenetic inference. Here, we assess this problem by combining for the first time biomechanics with phylogenetics using two advanced engineering techniques, multibody dynamics analysis and finite-element analysis, to objectively identify functional linkages in insect head structures which have been used traditionally to argue basal winged insect relationships...
February 8, 2017: Proceedings. Biological Sciences
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/28179517/a-new-developmental-mechanism-for-the-separation-of-the-mammalian-middle-ear-ossicles-from-the-jaw
#18
Daniel J Urban, Neal Anthwal, Zhe-Xi Luo, Jennifer A Maier, Alexa Sadier, Abigail S Tucker, Karen E Sears
Multiple mammalian lineages independently evolved a definitive mammalian middle ear (DMME) through breakdown of Meckel's cartilage (MC). However, the cellular and molecular drivers of this evolutionary transition remain unknown for most mammal groups. Here, we identify such drivers in the living marsupial opossum Monodelphis domestica, whose MC transformation during development anatomically mirrors the evolutionary transformation observed in fossils. Specifically, we link increases in cellular apoptosis and TGF-BR2 signalling to MC breakdown in opossums...
February 8, 2017: Proceedings. Biological Sciences
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/28179516/competition-between-apex-predators-brown-bears-decrease-wolf-kill-rate-on-two-continents
#19
Aimee Tallian, Andrés Ordiz, Matthew C Metz, Cyril Milleret, Camilla Wikenros, Douglas W Smith, Daniel R Stahler, Jonas Kindberg, Daniel R MacNulty, Petter Wabakken, Jon E Swenson, Håkan Sand
Trophic interactions are a fundamental topic in ecology, but we know little about how competition between apex predators affects predation, the mechanism driving top-down forcing in ecosystems. We used long-term datasets from Scandinavia (Europe) and Yellowstone National Park (North America) to evaluate how grey wolf (Canis lupus) kill rate was affected by a sympatric apex predator, the brown bear (Ursus arctos). We used kill interval (i.e. the number of days between consecutive ungulate kills) as a proxy of kill rate...
February 8, 2017: Proceedings. Biological Sciences
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/28179515/the-magnitude-of-innovation-and-its-evolution-in-social-animals
#20
Michal Arbilly, Kevin N Laland
Innovative behaviour in animals, ranging from invertebrates to humans, is increasingly recognized as an important topic for investigation by behavioural researchers. However, what constitutes an innovation remains controversial, and difficult to quantify. Drawing on a broad definition whereby any behaviour with a new component to it is an innovation, we propose a quantitative measure, which we call the magnitude of innovation, to describe the extent to which an innovative behaviour is novel. This allows us to distinguish between innovations that are a slight change to existing behaviours (low magnitude), and innovations that are substantially different (high magnitude)...
February 8, 2017: Proceedings. Biological Sciences
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