Science Enabled by Specimen Data

Ronquillo, C., Alves-Martins, F., Mazimpaka, V., Sobral-Souza, T., Vilela-Silva, B., G. Medina, N., & Hortal, J. (2020). Assessing spatial and temporal biases and gaps in the publicly available distributional information of Iberian mosses. Biodiversity Data Journal, 8. doi:10.3897/bdj.8.e53474 https://doi.org/10.3897/bdj.8.e53474

One of the most valuable initiatives on massive availability of biodiversity data is the Global Biodiversity Information Facility, which is creating new opportunities to develop and test macroecological knowledge. However, the potential uses of these data are limited by the gaps and biases associate…

Cross, A. T., Krueger, T. A., Gonella, P. M., Robinson, A. S., & Fleischmann, A. S. (2020). Conservation of carnivorous plants in the age of extinction. Global Ecology and Conservation, e01272. doi:10.1016/j.gecco.2020.e01272 https://doi.org/10.1016/j.gecco.2020.e01272

Carnivorous plants (CPs)—those possessing specific strategies to attract, capture and kill animal prey and obtain nutrition through the absorption of their biomass—are harbingers of anthropogenic degradation and destruction of ecosystems. CPs exhibit highly specialised and often very sensitive ecolo…

Chevalier, M., Chase, B. M., Quick, L. J., Dupont, L. M., & Johnson, T. C. (2020). Temperature change in subtropical southeastern Africa during the past 790,000 yr. Geology. doi:10.1130/g47841.1 https://doi.org/10.1130/G47841.1

Across the glacial-interglacial cycles of the late Pleistocene (~700 k.y.), temperature variability at low latitudes is often considered to have been negligible compared to changes in precipitation. However, a paucity of quantified temperature records makes this difficult to reliably assess. In this…

Tan, K., Lu, T., & Ren, M.-X. (2020). Biogeography and evolution of Asian Gesneriaceae based on updated taxonomy. PhytoKeys, 157, 7–26. doi:10.3897/phytokeys.157.34032 https://doi.org/10.3897/phytokeys.157.34032

Based on an updated taxonomy of Gesneriaceae, the biogeography and evolution of the Asian Gesneriaceae are outlined and discussed. Most of the Asian Gesneriaceae belongs to Didymocarpoideae, except Titanotrichum was recently moved into Gesnerioideae. Most basal taxa of the Asian Gesneriaceae are fou…

Zhernova, D. A., Nilova, M. V., & Oskolski, A. A. (2020). Comparative wood anatomy of Astropanax and Neocussonia, an Afro-Malagasy lineage of Araliaceae. Botanical Journal of the Linnean Society. doi:10.1093/botlinnean/boaa067 https://doi.org/10.1093/botlinnean/boaa067

Astropanax and Neocussonia are two recently resurrected genera of Araliaceae that had long been considered as an Afro-Malagasy lineage of Schefflera. The wood structure of 11 Neocussonia spp. and eight Astropanax spp. has been studied. Neocussonia shows a higher average length of vessel elements (13…

De Jesús Hernández-Hernández, M., Cruz, J. A., & Castañeda-Posadas, C. (2020). Paleoclimatic and vegetation reconstruction of the miocene southern Mexico using fossil flowers. Journal of South American Earth Sciences, 104, 102827. doi:10.1016/j.jsames.2020.102827 https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jsames.2020.102827

Concern about the course of the current environmental problems has raised interest in investigating the different scenarios that have taken place in our planet throughout time. To that end, different methodologies have been employed in order to determine the different variables that compose the envi…

Frankiewicz, K. E., Chau, J. H., & Oskolski, A. A. (2020). Wood and bark of Buddleja: uniseriate phellem, and systematic and ecological patterns. IAWA Journal, 1–40. doi:10.1163/22941932-bja10020 https://doi.org/10.1163/22941932-bja10020

Wood anatomy of Buddleja is well-explored but not in many southern African members, which form a grade of species and small clades that form successive sister groups to the rest of the genus, and its bark structure has not been studied at all. We provide new descriptions of wood anatomy for twelve s…

Davies, T. J., Daru, B. H., Bezeng, B. S., Charles-Dominique, T., Hempson, G. P., Kabongo, R. M., … Bond, W. J. (2020). Savanna tree evolutionary ages inform the reconstruction of the paleoenvironment of our hominin ancestors. Scientific Reports, 10(1). doi:10.1038/s41598-020-69378-0 https://doi.org/10.1038/s41598-020-69378-0

Ideas on hominin evolution have long invoked the emergence from forests into open habitats as generating selection for traits such as bipedalism and dietary shifts. Though controversial, the savanna hypothesis continues to motivate research into the palaeo-environments of Africa. Reconstruction of t…

Dimobe, K., Ouédraogo, A., Ouédraogo, K., Goetze, D., Stein, K., Schmidt, M., … Thiombiano, A. (2020). Climate change reduces the distribution area of the shea tree (Vitellaria paradoxa C.F. Gaertn.) in Burkina Faso. Journal of Arid Environments, 181, 104237. doi:10.1016/j.jaridenv.2020.104237 https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jaridenv.2020.104237

Vitellaria paradoxa, the shea tree, an economically important fruit-tree species native to savanna regions is threatened in Burkina Faso due to overexploitation and changing land-use. Furthermore, it remains unclear how climate change will influence its frequency and distribution. We investigated th…

Bellot, S., Bayton, R. P., Couvreur, T. L. P., Dodsworth, S., Eiserhardt, W. L., Guignard, M. S., … Baker, W. J. (2020). On the origin of giant seeds: the macroevolution of the double coconut ( Lodoicea maldivica ) and its relatives (Borasseae, Arecaceae). New Phytologist. doi:10.1111/nph.16750 https://doi.org/10.1111/nph.16750

Seed size shapes plant evolution and ecosystems, and may be driven by plant size and architecture, dispersers, habitat and insularity. How these factors influence the evolution of giant seeds is unclear, as are the rate of evolution and the biogeographical consequences of giant seeds. We generated D…