No. 12 December 2018Migration matters
Predators, such a brown bears, often rely on intercepting prey species, like Pacific salmon, during their annual migrations. This coupling of movements between migratory prey and resident predators may vary widely among taxa and ecosystems, with ecological consequences across whole communities.
See Furey et al
No. 11 November 2018Evolution of maturity
Age at maturity in Atlantic salmon is associated with a single locus, vgll3, with sex-specific effects. During sea migration of a large salmon population, rapid evolution towards early maturity is only observed in males.
See Czorlich et al.
No. 10 October 2018Ediacaran community complexity
Enigmatic Ediacaran organisms - Tribrachidium (top) and Ivovicia (bottom) - formed complex benthic communities ~15 million years before the Cambrian Explosion of animals.
See Darroch et al.
No. 9 September 2018Patchy sampling
Comprehensive analysis of field studies from the terrestrial Arctic reveals large spatial biases in sampling. Nearly one-third of all citations are derived from sites located within 50 km of two research stations – Toolik Lake in the USA and Abisko in Sweden, pictured.
See Metcalfe et al.
No. 8 August 2018Rare ocean gems
Marine plankton communities contain a huge number of distinct species, such as these protists observed by the Tara Oceans expedition at the ocean surface. Although the composition of such communities varies considerably from place to place, the decay in abundance of the rare species that comprise 99% of local richness follows the same power law everywhere.
See Ser-Giacomi et al.
No. 7 July 2018Dominating dry forests
In Latin America, many regrowing forests are dominated by legume trees. The ability to fix nitrogen through symbiosis is a crucial element of their success. But Leguminosae species that also form a small bipinnate leaves (shown here in Guanacaste, Costa Rica) hold a double advantage in hot, dry and highly seasonal environments across the Neotropics.
See Gei et al.
No. 6 June 2018Phenological mismatch
Pied flycatcher with caterpillar prey to feed young. Trends in spatial and temporal mismatch between trees, caterpillars and birds in the UK show delayed phenology of all species with increasing latitude, and little spatial variation in the magnitude of mismatch between caterpillars and birds.
See Burgess et al.
No. 5 May 2018Mesolithic resilience
An antler headdress/mask from the Mesolithic site at Star Carr in Yorkshire, UK. Combined palaeoclimatic and archaeological data show that hunter-gatherers persisted at this site for hundreds of years despite severe and abrupt changes in climate.
See Blockley et al.
No. 4 April 2018The importance of being intact
As the terrestrial human footprint continues to expand, the amount of native forest that is free from significant damaging human activities is in precipitous decline. The remaining intact forests, such as Danum Valley, Borneo, should be accorded urgent conservation priority because of their value for biodiversity, carbon sequestration and storage, water provision, and the maintenance of indigenous cultures and human health.
See Watson et al.
No. 3 March 2018Hidden in plain sight
The plains zebra is the most widespread of the three zebra species, but is under pressure due to habitat fragmentation that severs migration routes. A population genetic study places the plains zebra origin in southern Africa and details the historical migration routes between populations, revealing that the subspecies classification does not match the genetic structure.
See Pedersen et al.
No. 2 February 2018Keep on looking
For carnivores that weigh under about 5 kg, and whose diets therefore include significant proportions of small prey, activity scales positively with size, whereas above 5 kg it scales negatively. Medium-sized carnivores, such as this red fox (Vulpes vulpes) near the sea-puffin colony of Elliston, Canada, spend the most time foraging and are therefore particularly vulnerable to environmental change.
See Rizzuto et al.
No. 1 January 2018Birthday biodiversity
A celebration of some of the species that have featured in the pages of Nature Ecology & Evolution during the journal's first year.
See here for the names of all the species and the articles they appear in.