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Macroecology is the study of broad scale ecological patterns and processes. The focus is rarely on single communities and ecosystems, and instead looks at principles that apply more broadly such as metabolic scaling, extinction risk and diversity gradients.
Phylogenetic analysis of behavioural data across all living mammalian orders suggests the earliest mammals were nocturnal, and other modes such as cathemerality and strict diurnality did not arise until the end of the Cretaceous and early Cenozoic.
Assessing the relationship between sea temperature and distributional range for 1,790 shallow-water marine species, the authors find that realized thermal niches increase with latitude, despite decreases in geographic range size.
A trait-based approach for assessing physiological sensitivity to climate change can connect a species' evolutionary past with its future vulnerability. Now a global assessment of freshwater and marine fishes reveals patterns of warming sensitivity, highlighting the importance of different biogeographies and identifying places where vulnerability runs high.
Similarities in planning, development and culture within urban areas may lead to the convergence of ecological processes on continental scales. Transdisciplinary, multi-scale research is now needed to understand and predict the impact of human-dominated landscapes on ecosystem structure and function.
A steep decline in archiving could make large tree-ring datasets irrelevant. But increased spatiotemporal coverage, the addition of novel parameters at sub-annual resolution, and integration with other in situ and remote Earth observations will elevate tree-ring data as an essential component of global-change research.