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Ecological systems theory

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https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/28944555/biological-hierarchies-and-the-nature-of-extinction
#1
Curtis R Congreve, Amanda R Falk, James C Lamsdell
Hierarchy theory recognises that ecological and evolutionary units occur in a nested and interconnected hierarchical system, with cascading effects occurring between hierarchical levels. Different biological disciplines have routinely come into conflict over the primacy of different forcing mechanisms behind evolutionary and ecological change. These disconnects arise partly from differences in perspective (with some researchers favouring ecological forcing mechanisms while others favour developmental/historical mechanisms), as well as differences in the temporal framework in which workers operate...
September 24, 2017: Biological Reviews of the Cambridge Philosophical Society
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/28940809/effects-of-age-and-sex-ratios-on-offspring-recruitment-rates-in-translocated-black-rhinoceros
#2
Jay V Gedir, Peter R Law, Pierre du Preez, Wayne L Linklater
Success of animal translocations depends on improving post-release demographic rates toward establishment and subsequent growth of released populations. Short-term metrics for evaluating translocation success and its drivers, like post-release survival and fecundity, are unlikely to represent longer-term outcomes. We used information theory to investigate 25 years of black rhinoceros (Diceros bicornis) translocations using the offspring recruitment rate (ORR) of translocated females - a metric integrating survival, fecundity and offspring recruitment at sexual maturity - to detect determinants of success...
September 22, 2017: Conservation Biology: the Journal of the Society for Conservation Biology
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/28937447/community-general-pediatricians-perspectives-on-providing-autism-diagnoses-in-ontario-canada-a-qualitative-study
#3
Melanie Penner, Gillian A King, Laura Hartman, Evdokia Anagnostou, Michelle Shouldice, Charlotte Moore Hepburn
OBJECTIVE: Community general pediatricians (CGPs) are a potential resource to increase capacity for autism spectrum disorder (ASD) diagnostic assessments. The objective of this study was to explore factors influencing CGPs' perspectives on and practices of providing ASD diagnoses. METHODS: This qualitative study used a constructivist modified grounded theory approach. Participants included CGPs who had attended ASD educational events or had referred a child with suspected ASD to a tertiary rehabilitation center...
August 1, 2017: Journal of Developmental and Behavioral Pediatrics: JDBP
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/28931738/biological-and-statistical-processes-jointly-drive-population-aggregation-using-host-parasite-interactions-to-understand-taylor-s-power-law
#4
Pieter T J Johnson, Mark Q Wilber
The macroecological pattern known as Taylor's power law (TPL) represents the pervasive tendency of the variance in population density to increase as a power function of the mean. Despite empirical illustrations in systems ranging from viruses to vertebrates, the biological significance of this relationship continues to be debated. Here we combined collection of a unique dataset involving 11 987 amphibian hosts and 332 684 trematode parasites with experimental measurements of core epidemiological outcomes to explicitly test the contributions of hypothesized biological processes in driving aggregation...
September 27, 2017: Proceedings. Biological Sciences
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/28923156/functional-constructivism-in-search-of-formal-descriptors
#5
Irina Trofimova
The Functional Constructivism (FC) paradigm is an alternative to behaviorism and considers behavior as being generated every time anew, based on an individual's capacities, environmental resources and demands. Walter Freeman's work provided us with evidence supporting the FC principles. In this paper we make parallels between gradual construction processes leading to the formation of individual behavior and habits, and evolutionary processes leading to the establishment of biological systems. Referencing evolutionary theory, several formal descriptors of such processes are proposed...
October 2017: Nonlinear Dynamics, Psychology, and Life Sciences
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/28921808/long-term-agricultural-management-does-not-alter-the-evolution-of-a-soybean-rhizobium-mutualism
#6
Jennifer E Schmidt, Dylan J Weese, Jennifer A Lau
Leguminous crops, like soybeans, often rely on biologically fixed nitrogen via their symbiosis with rhizobia rather than synthetic nitrogen inputs. However, agricultural management practices may influence the effectiveness of biological nitrogen fixation. While the ecological effects of agricultural management on rhizobia have received some attention, the evolutionary effects have been neglected in comparison. Resource mutualism theory predicts that evolutionary effects are likely, however. Both fertilization and tillage are predicted to cause the evolution of rhizobia that provide fewer growth benefits to plant hosts and fix less nitrogen...
September 16, 2017: Ecological Applications: a Publication of the Ecological Society of America
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/28916329/ecological-extension-of-the-theory-of-evolution-by-natural-selection-from-a-perspective-of-western-and-eastern-holistic-philosophy
#7
REVIEW
Toshiyuki Nakajima
Evolution by natural selection requires the following conditions: (1) a particular selective environment, (2) variation of traits in the population; (3) differential survival/reproduction among types of organisms; and (4) heritable traits. However, the traditional (standard) model does not unclearly explain how and why these conditions are generated or determined. What generates a selective environment? What generates new types? How does a certain type replace, or coexist, with others? In this paper, based on the holistic philosophy in Western and Eastern traditions, I focus on the ecosystem as a higher-level system and generator of conditions that induce the evolution of local populations; I also aim to identify the ecosystem processes that generate those conditions...
September 12, 2017: Progress in Biophysics and Molecular Biology
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/28902394/quantity-and-quality-limit-detritivore-growth-mechanisms-revealed-by-ecological-stoichiometry-and-co-limitation-theory
#8
Halvor M Halvorson, Erik Sperfeld, Michelle A Evans-White
Resource quantity and quality are fundamental bottom-up constraints on consumers. Best understood in autotroph-based systems, co-occurrence of these constraints may be common but remains poorly studied in detrital-based systems. Here, we used a laboratory growth experiment to test limitation of the detritivorous caddisfly larvae Pycnopsyche lepida across a concurrent gradient of oak litter quantity (food supply) and quality (phosphorus:carbon, P:C ratios). Growth increased simultaneously with quantity and quality, indicating co-limitation across the resource gradients...
September 13, 2017: Ecology
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/28887176/ecoacoustic-codes-and-ecological-complexity
#9
Almo Farina
Multi-layer communication and sensing network assures the exchange of relevant information between animals and their umwelten, imparting complexity to the ecological systems. Individual soniferous species, the acoustic community, and soundscape are the three main operational levels that comprise this multi-layer network. Acoustic adaptation and acoustic niche are two more important mechanisms that regulate the acoustic performances at the first level while the acoustic community model explains the complexity of the interspecific acoustic network at the second level...
September 5, 2017: Bio Systems
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/28879013/the-dual-impact-of-ecology-and-management-on-social-incentives-in-marine-common-pool-resource-systems
#10
E S Klein, M R Barbier, J R Watson
Understanding how and when cooperative human behaviour forms in common-pool resource systems is critical to illuminating social-ecological systems and designing governance institutions that promote sustainable resource use. Before assessing the full complexity of social dynamics, it is essential to understand, concretely and mechanistically, how resource dynamics and human actions interact to create incentives and pay-offs for social behaviours. Here, we investigated how such incentives for information sharing are affected by spatial dynamics and management in a common-pool resource system...
August 2017: Royal Society Open Science
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/28865306/natural-ecosystem-mimicry-in-traditional-dryland-agroecosystems-insights-from-an-empirical-and-holistic-approach
#11
Julien Blanco, Geneviève Michon, Stéphanie M Carrière
While the aim of Ecological Intensification is to enable the design of more sustainable and productive agricultural systems, it is not suited to dryland agroecosystems that are driven by non-equilibrium dynamics and intrinsic variability. Instead, a model based on mobility and variability management has been proposed for these agroecosystems. However, this model remains under-applied in southern Morocco where there have been few studies on the functioning of traditional agroecosystems. This paper focuses on an agroecosystem in the Moroccan Saharan fringe zone that combines agriculture and pastoralism in an acacia parkland...
August 30, 2017: Journal of Environmental Management
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/28860356/island-biogeography-taking-the-long-view-of-nature-s-laboratories
#12
REVIEW
Robert J Whittaker, José María Fernández-Palacios, Thomas J Matthews, Michael K Borregaard, Kostas A Triantis
Islands provide classic model biological systems. We review how growing appreciation of geoenvironmental dynamics of marine islands has led to advances in island biogeographic theory accommodating both evolutionary and ecological phenomena. Recognition of distinct island geodynamics permits general models to be developed and modified to account for patterns of diversity, diversification, lineage development, and trait evolution within and across island archipelagos. Emergent patterns of diversity include predictable variation in island species-area relationships, progression rule colonization from older to younger land masses, and syndromes including loss of dispersability and secondary woodiness in herbaceous plant lineages...
September 1, 2017: Science
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/28857233/ecological-theories-of-systems-and-contextual-change-in-medical-education
#13
Rachel H Ellaway, Joanna Bates, Pim W Teunissen
INTRODUCTION: Contemporary medical practice is subject to many kinds of change, to which both individuals and systems have to respond and adapt. Many medical education programmes have their learners rotating through different training contexts, which means that they too must learn to adapt to contextual change. Contextual change presents many challenges to medical education scholars and practitioners, not least because of a somewhat fractured and contested theoretical basis for responding to these challenges...
August 30, 2017: Medical Education
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/28839929/why-an-extended-evolutionary-synthesis-is-necessary
#14
REVIEW
Gerd B Müller
Since the last major theoretical integration in evolutionary biology-the modern synthesis (MS) of the 1940s-the biosciences have made significant advances. The rise of molecular biology and evolutionary developmental biology, the recognition of ecological development, niche construction and multiple inheritance systems, the '-omics' revolution and the science of systems biology, among other developments, have provided a wealth of new knowledge about the factors responsible for evolutionary change. Some of these results are in agreement with the standard theory and others reveal different properties of the evolutionary process...
October 6, 2017: Interface Focus
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/28839915/domestication-as-a-model-system-for-the-extended-evolutionary-synthesis
#15
REVIEW
Melinda A Zeder
One of the challenges in evaluating arguments for extending the conceptual framework of evolutionary biology involves the identification of a tractable model system that allows for an assessment of the core assumptions of the extended evolutionary synthesis (EES). The domestication of plants and animals by humans provides one such case study opportunity. Here, I consider domestication as a model system for exploring major tenets of the EES. First I discuss the novel insights that niche construction theory (NCT, one of the pillars of the EES) provides into the domestication processes, particularly as they relate to five key areas: coevolution, evolvability, ecological inheritance, cooperation and the pace of evolutionary change...
October 6, 2017: Interface Focus
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/28833083/why-are-some-plant-pollinator-networks-more-nested-than-others
#16
Chuliang Song, Rudolf P Rohr, Serguei Saavedra
Empirical studies have found that the mutualistic interactions forming the structure of plant-pollinator networks are typically more nested than expected by chance alone. Additionally, theoretical studies have shown a positive association between the nested structure of mutualistic networks and community persistence. Yet, it has been shown that some plant-pollinator networks may be more nested than others, raising the interesting question of which factors are responsible for such enhanced nested structure. It has been argued that ordered network structures may increase the persistence of ecological communities under less predictable environments...
August 21, 2017: Journal of Animal Ecology
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/28812691/a-macroecological-theory-of-microbial-biodiversity
#17
William R Shoemaker, Kenneth J Locey, Jay T Lennon
Microorganisms are the most abundant, diverse and functionally important organisms on Earth. Over the past decade, microbial ecologists have produced the largest ever community datasets. However, these data are rarely used to uncover law-like patterns of commonness and rarity, test theories of biodiversity, or explore unifying explanations for the structure of microbial communities. Using a global scale compilation of >20,000 samples from environmental, engineered and host-related ecosystems, we test the power of competing theories to predict distributions of microbial abundance and diversity-abundance scaling laws...
April 3, 2017: Nature ecology & evolution
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/28812678/the-multilayer-nature-of-ecological-networks
#18
Shai Pilosof, Mason A Porter, Mercedes Pascual, Sonia Kéfi
Although networks provide a powerful approach to study a large variety of ecological systems, their formulation does not typically account for multiple interaction types, interactions that vary in space and time, and interconnected systems such as networks of networks. The emergent field of 'multilayer networks' provides a natural framework for extending analyses of ecological systems to include such multiple layers of complexity, as it specifically allows one to differentiate and model 'intralayer' and 'interlayer' connectivity...
March 23, 2017: Nature ecology & evolution
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/28812672/rapid-and-direct-recoveries-of-predators-and-prey-through-synchronized-ecosystem-management
#19
Jameal F Samhouri, Adrian C Stier, Shannon M Hennessey, Mark Novak, Benjamin S Halpern, Phillip S Levin
One of the twenty-first century's greatest environmental challenges is to recover and restore species, habitats and ecosystems. The decision about how to initiate restoration is best-informed by an understanding of the linkages between ecosystem components and, given these linkages, an appreciation of the consequences of choosing to recover one ecosystem component before another. However, it remains difficult to predict how the sequence of species' recoveries within food webs influences the speed and trajectory of restoration, and what that means for human well-being...
March 1, 2017: Nature ecology & evolution
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/28806928/colour-polymorphic-lures-exploit-innate-preferences-for-spectral-versus-luminance-cues-in-dipteran-prey
#20
Thomas E White, Darrell J Kemp
BACKGROUND: Theory predicts that colour polymorphism may be favored by variation in the visual context under which signals are perceived. The context encompasses all environmental determinants of light availability and propagation, but also the dynamics of perception in receivers. Color vision involves the neural separation of information into spectral versus luminance channels, which often differentially guide specific tasks. Here we explicitly tested whether this discrete perceptual basis contributes to the maintenance of polymorphism in a prey-luring system...
August 14, 2017: BMC Evolutionary Biology
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