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Proceedings. Biological Sciences

Kelly L Ronald, Esteban Fernández-Juricic, Jeffrey R Lucas
A common assumption in sexual selection studies is that receivers decode signal information similarly. However, receivers may vary in how they rank signallers if signal perception varies with an individual's sensory configuration. Furthermore, receivers may vary in their weighting of different elements of multimodal signals based on their sensory configuration. This could lead to complex levels of selection on signalling traits. We tested whether multimodal sensory configuration could affect preferences for multimodal signals...
May 16, 2018: Proceedings. Biological Sciences
Jan-Åke Nilsson, Andreas Nord
The maximum work rate of animals has recently been suggested to be determined by the rate at which excess metabolic heat generated during work can be dissipated (heat dissipation limitation (HDL) theory). As a first step towards testing this theory in wild animals, we experimentally manipulated brood size in breeding marsh tits ( Poecile palustris ) to change their work rate. Parents feeding nestlings generally operated at above-normal body temperatures. Body temperature in both males and females increased with maximum ambient temperature and with manipulated work rate, sometimes even exceeding 45°C, which is close to suggested lethal levels for birds...
May 16, 2018: Proceedings. Biological Sciences
Georgia Titcomb, Robert M Pringle, Todd M Palmer, Hillary S Young
No abstract text is available yet for this article.
May 16, 2018: Proceedings. Biological Sciences
Kevin W Rio, Gregory C Dachner, William H Warren
It is commonly believed that global patterns of motion in flocks, schools and crowds emerge from local interactions between individuals, through a process of self-organization. The key to explaining such collective behaviour thus lies in deciphering these local interactions. We take an experiment-driven approach to modelling collective motion in human crowds. Previously, we observed that a pedestrian aligns their velocity vector (speed and heading direction) with that of a neighbour. Here we investigate the neighbourhood of interaction in a crowd: which neighbours influence a pedestrian's behaviour, how this depends on neighbour position, and how the influences of multiple neighbours are combined...
May 16, 2018: Proceedings. Biological Sciences
Benjamin T Martin, Stephan B Munch, Andrew M Hein
Ecologists have long sought to understand the dynamics of populations and communities by deriving mathematical theory from first principles. Theoretical models often take the form of dynamical equations that comprise the ecological processes (e.g. competition, predation) believed to govern system dynamics. The inverse of this approach-inferring which processes and ecological interactions drive observed dynamics-remains an open problem in ecology. Here, we propose a way to attack this problem using a machine learning method known as symbolic regression, which seeks to discover relationships in time-series data and to express those relationships using dynamical equations...
May 16, 2018: Proceedings. Biological Sciences
Roxanne S Beltran, Jennifer M Burns, Greg A Breed
Birds and mammals have developed numerous strategies for replacing worn feathers and hair. Moulting usually occurs on an annual basis; however, moults that take place twice per year (biannual moults) also occur. Here, we review the forces driving the evolution of various moult strategies, focusing on the special case of the complete biannual moult as a convergence of selection pressures across birds and mammals. Current evidence suggests that harsh environmental conditions or seasonality (e.g. larger variation in temperatures) drive evolution of a biannual moult...
May 16, 2018: Proceedings. Biological Sciences
Yu-Ching Huang, Viet Dai Dang, Ni-Chen Chang, John Wang
Supergenes consist of co-adapted loci that segregate together and are associated with adaptive traits. In the fire ant Solenopsis invicta , two 'social' supergene variants regulate differences in colony queen number and other traits. Suppressed recombination in this system is maintained, in part, by a greater than 9 Mb inversion, but the supergene is larger. Has the supergene in S. invicta undergone multiple large inversions? The initial gene content of the inverted allele of a supergene would be the same as that of the wild-type allele...
May 16, 2018: Proceedings. Biological Sciences
J C Buck, S E Perkins
No abstract text is available yet for this article.
May 16, 2018: Proceedings. Biological Sciences
Frédéric Delsuc, Melanie Kuch, Gillian C Gibb, Jonathan Hughes, Paul Szpak, John Southon, Jacob Enk, Ana T Duggan, Hendrik N Poinar
Mylodon darwinii is the extinct giant ground sloth named after Charles Darwin, who first collected its remains in South America. We have successfully obtained a high-quality mitochondrial genome at 99-fold coverage using an Illumina shotgun sequencing of a 12 880-year-old bone fragment from Mylodon Cave in Chile. Low level of DNA damage showed that this sample was exceptionally well preserved for an ancient subfossil, probably the result of the dry and cold conditions prevailing within the cave. Accordingly, taxonomic assessment of our shotgun metagenomic data showed a very high percentage of endogenous DNA with 22% of the assembled metagenomic contigs assigned to Xenarthra...
May 16, 2018: Proceedings. Biological Sciences
Jakob C Mueller, Heiner Kuhl, Stefan Boerno, Jose L Tella, Martina Carrete, Bart Kempenaers
When a species successfully colonizes an urban habitat it can be expected that its population rapidly adapts to the new environment but also experiences demographic perturbations. It is, therefore, essential to gain an understanding of the population structure and the demographic history of the urban and neighbouring rural populations before studying adaptation at the genome level. Here, we investigate populations of the burrowing owl ( Athene cunicularia ), a species that colonized South American cities just a few decades ago...
May 16, 2018: Proceedings. Biological Sciences
H J Esser, N A Hartemink, W F de Boer
No abstract text is available yet for this article.
May 16, 2018: Proceedings. Biological Sciences
Gary Carvalho
No abstract text is available yet for this article.
May 16, 2018: Proceedings. Biological Sciences
Michael L Logan, John David Curlis, Anthony L Gilbert, Donald B Miles, Albert K Chung, Joel W McGlothlin, Robert M Cox
Ectothermic species are particularly sensitive to changes in temperature and may adapt to changes in thermal environments through evolutionary shifts in thermal physiology or thermoregulatory behaviour. Nevertheless, the heritability of thermal traits, which sets a limit on evolutionary potential, remains largely unexplored. In this study, we captured brown anole lizards ( Anolis sagrei ) from two populations that occur in contrasting thermal environments. We raised offspring from these populations in a laboratory common garden and compared the shape of their thermal performance curves to test for genetic divergence in thermal physiology...
May 16, 2018: Proceedings. Biological Sciences
Janek S Lobmaier, Urs Fischbacher, Fabian Probst, Urs Wirthmüller, Daria Knoch
No abstract text is available yet for this article.
May 16, 2018: Proceedings. Biological Sciences
Moritz Muschick, James M Russell, Eliane Jemmi, Jonas Walker, Kathlyn M Stewart, Alison M Murray, Nathalie Dubois, J Curt Stager, Thomas C Johnson, Ole Seehausen
The frequent occurrence of adaptive radiations on oceanic islands and in lakes is often attributed to ecological opportunity resulting from release from competition where arrival order among lineages predicts which lineage radiates. This priority effect occurs when the lineage that arrives first expands its niche breadth and diversifies into a set of ecological specialists with associated monopolization of the resources. Later-arriving species do not experience ecological opportunity and do not radiate. While theoretical support and evidence from microbial experiments for priority effects are strong, empirical evidence in nature is difficult to obtain...
May 16, 2018: Proceedings. Biological Sciences
Eli Amson, Guillaume Billet, Christian de Muizon
Through phenotypic plasticity, bones can change in structure and morphology, in response to physiological and biomechanical influences over the course of individual life. Changes in bones also occur in evolution as functional adaptations to the environment. In this study, we report on the evolution of bone mass increase (BMI) that occurred in the postcranium and skull of extinct aquatic sloths. Although non-pathological BMI in postcranial skeleton has been known in aquatic mammals, we here document general BMI in the skull for the first time...
May 16, 2018: Proceedings. Biological Sciences
James S Santangelo, Marc T J Johnson, Rob W Ness
Urban environments offer the opportunity to study the role of adaptive and non-adaptive evolutionary processes on an unprecedented scale. While the presence of parallel clines in heritable phenotypic traits is often considered strong evidence for the role of natural selection, non-adaptive evolutionary processes can also generate clines, and this may be more likely when traits have a non-additive genetic basis due to epistasis. In this paper, we use spatially explicit simulations modelled according to the cyanogenesis (hydrogen cyanide, HCN) polymorphism in white clover ( Trifolium repens ) to examine the formation of phenotypic clines along urbanization gradients under varying levels of drift, gene flow and selection...
May 16, 2018: Proceedings. Biological Sciences
Bradley K Woodworth, D Ryan Norris, Brendan A Graham, Zachary A Kahn, Daniel J Mennill
Understanding how climate change will shape species distributions in the future requires a functional understanding of the demographic responses of animals to their environment. For birds, most of our knowledge of how climate influences population vital rates stems from research in temperate environments, even though most of Earth's avian diversity is concentrated in the tropics. We evaluated effects of Southern Oscillation Index (SOI) and local temperature and rainfall at multiple temporal scales on sex-specific survival of a resident tropical bird, the rufous-and-white wren Thryophilus rufalbus , studied over 15 years in the dry forests of northwestern Costa Rica...
May 16, 2018: Proceedings. Biological Sciences
Anna S Westermeier, Renate Sachse, Simon Poppinga, Philipp Vögele, Lubomir Adamec, Thomas Speck, Manfred Bischoff
The fast motion of the snap-traps of the terrestrial Venus flytrap ( Dionaea muscipula ) have been intensively studied, in contrast to the tenfold faster underwater snap-traps of its phylogenetic sister, the waterwheel plant ( Aldrovanda vesiculosa ). Based on biomechanical and functional-morphological analyses and on a reverse biomimetic approach via mechanical modelling and computer simulations, we identify a combination of hydraulic turgor change and the release of prestress stored in the trap as essential for actuation...
May 16, 2018: Proceedings. Biological Sciences
Claus Wedekind
No abstract text is available yet for this article.
May 16, 2018: Proceedings. Biological Sciences
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