Ecology

Can managers compensate for coyote predation of white-tailed deer?
Many studies have documented that coyotes (Canis latrans) are the greatest source of natural mortality for white-tailed deer (Odocoileus virginianus) neonates (...


Temporal patterns in the foraging behavior of sea otters in Alaska
Activity time budgets in apex predators have been proposed as indicators of population status relative to resource limitation or carrying capacity. We used archival time-depth recorders implanted in 15 adult female and 4 male sea otters (Enhydra lutris) from the northernmost population of the species, Prince William Sound, Alaska, USA, to examine temporal patterns in their foraging behavior. Se...
Habitat-related variation in carcass mass of a large herbivore revealed by combining hunting and GPS data
Studies on habitat–performance relationships that require joint data on fitness and habitat use are still scarce in long-lived species. Using data from a southern French population of Mediterranean mouflon (Ovis gmelini musimon × Ovis sp.), we proposed an original approach for gaining information on this relationship by combining a fitness proxy (i.e., carcass mass) collected on harveste...


Genetic structure of brown and Iberian hare populations in northern Iberia: Implications for conservation of genetic diversity
Hares in the northern Iberian Peninsula have been managed by local authorities primarily as a game species for hunting. Over the last 4 decades, populations have been restocked by means of translocation from other regions. We examined the genetic structure of wild populations of 2 species living in the northern Iberian Peninsula: the brown hare (Lepus europaeus) and the Iberian hare (L. granate...
Stopover duration of mallards during autumn in the Illinois River valley
Estimates of time spent at migratory stopovers are often used to develop habitat conservation objectives for a variety of avian species, namely waterfowl. Because of limited previous research and a need for accurate conservation planning objectives, we estimated stopover duration and factors influencing stay of mallards (Anas platyrhynchos) in Illinois using radio telemetry during autumns 2009 ...


Modeling sighting heterogeneity and abundance in spatially replicated multiple-observer surveys
Failure to account for dependencies among observers in multiple-observer capture-recapture studies will lead to biased inference yet methods that account for dependencies are poorly developed. We combined hierarchical capture-recapture models and finite sampling theory to infer population abundance of koala (Phascolarctos cinereus) in the 5,812-ha Mount Eccles National Park, southeastern Austra...
Non-additive effects of invasive tree litter shift seasonal N release: a potential invasion feedback
Many invasive plant species strongly alter ecosystem processes by producing leaf litter that decomposes faster and releases N more quickly than that of native species. However, while most studies of invasive species litter impacts have only considered the decomposition of species in monoculture, forest litter layers typically contain litter from many species. Many litter mixtures decompose in a...

Masting, mixtures and modes: are two models better than one?
A key hypothesis in population ecology is that synchronous and intermittent seed production, known as mast seeding, is driven by the alternating allocation of carbohydrates and mineral nutrients between growth and reproduction in different years, i.e. ‘resource switching’. Such behaviour may ultimately generate bimodal distributions of long-term flower and seed production, and evidence of t...
Detecting phylogenetic signal in mutualistic interaction networks using a Markov process model
Ecological interaction networks, such as those describing the mutualistic interactions between plants and their pollinators or between plants and their frugivores, exhibit non-random structural properties that cannot be explained by simple models of network formation. One factor affecting the formation and eventual structure of such a network is its evolutionary history. We argue that this, in ...

Matrix models for quantifying competitive intransitivity from species abundance data
In a network of competing species, a competitive intransitivity occurs when the ranking of competitive abilities does not follow a linear hierarchy (A > B > C but C > A). A variety of mathematical models suggests that intransitive networks can prevent or slow down competitive exclusion and maintain biodiversity by enhancing species coexistence. However, it has been difficult to assess empirical...
Both flowering time and distance to conspecific plants affect reproduction in Echinacea angustifolia, a common prairie perennial
In small fragmented plant populations, reproductive failure due to pollen limitation is often attributed to spatial isolation of individuals. While flowering time has been shown to affect seed set, its role in pollen limited fragmented populations is less understood.2. In this study, we quantified near-neighbour distances, flowering phenology, and how they interact to affect seed set in individ...

Decoupled evolution of foliar freezing resistance, temperature-niche and morphological leaf traits in Chilean Myrceugenia
Phylogenetic conservatism of tolerance to freezing temperatures has been cited to explain the tendency of plant lineages to grow in similar climates. However there is little information about whether or not freezing resistance is conserved across phylogenies, and whether conservatism of physiological traits could explain conservatism of realized climatic niches. Here we compared the phylogeneti...
Hypogeous fungi in Mediterranean maquis, arid and semi-arid forests
Hypogeous fungi are common in arid and semi-arid areas of the Mediterranean basin and, in particular, they are found in Italy, Spain, northern African countries (especially in Morocco, Algeria, and Tunisia), and in the Middle East. These fungi and, in particular, some species belonging to the genus Tuber and the desert truffles (Terfezia spp. and Tirmania spp.) form ascomata of considerable eco...
Rock-inhabiting fungi and their role in deterioration of stone monuments in the Mediterranean area
Most of the cultural heritage is in the Mediterranean area. Stone was historically the most durable and widely used building material; therefore, the greatest deal of antiques is represented by stone monuments located in outdoor environments. Atmospheric agents, pollution, and various stresses are the main causes of deterioration of artistic heritage as well as many micro-organisms that often c...
Ecology and diversity of Cortinarius species (Agaricales, Basidiomycota) associated with Quercus ilex L. in the Mediterranean area of Liguria (North-western Italy)
Cortinarius is one of the most widespread macrofungal genera. Although Mediterranean basin is considered a biodiversity hotspot, very few studies have addressed the presence and importance of Cortinarius species in such area. Surveys were carried out in Liguria (NW Italy) in different habitats characterized by the presence of Quercus ilex. Altogether 67 taxa were observed: 49 of them are new re...