Science Enabled by Specimen Data

Bazzicalupo, A. L., Whitton, J., & Berbee, M. L. (2019). Over the hills, but how far away? Estimates of mushroom geographic range extents. Journal of Biogeography. doi:10.1111/jbi.13617 https://doi.org/10.1111/jbi.13617

Aim: Geographic distributions of mushroom species remain poorly understood despite their importance for advancing our understanding of the habitat requirements, species interactions and ecosystem functions of this key group of organisms. Here, we estimate geographic range extents (maximum within‐spe…

Pelletier, T. A., Carstens, B. C., Tank, D. C., Sullivan, J., & Espíndola, A. (2018). Predicting plant conservation priorities on a global scale. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 115(51), 13027–13032. doi:10.1073/pnas.1804098115 https://doi.org/10.1073/pnas.1804098115

The conservation status of most plant species is currently unknown, despite the fundamental role of plants in ecosystem health. To facilitate the costly process of conservation assessment, we developed a predictive protocol using a machine-learning approach to predict conservation status of over 150…

Chase, B. M., Boom, A., Carr, A. S., Chevalier, M., Quick, L. J., Verboom, G. A., & Reimer, P. J. (2019). Extreme hydroclimate response gradients within the western Cape Floristic region of South Africa since the Last Glacial Maximum. Quaternary Science Reviews, 219, 297–307. doi:10.1016/j.quascirev.2019.07.006 https://doi.org/10.1016/j.quascirev.2019.07.006

The Cape Floristic Region (CFR) is one of the world's major biodiversity hotspots, and much work has gone into identifying the drivers of this diversity. Considered regionally in the context of Quaternary climate change, climate stability is generally accepted as being one of the major factors promo…

Villaverde, T., González-Moreno, P., Rodríguez-Sánchez, F., & Escudero, M. (2017). Niche shifts after long-distance dispersal events in bipolar sedges (Carex, Cyperaceae). American Journal of Botany, 104(11), 1765–1774. doi:10.3732/ajb.1700171 https://doi.org/10.3732/ajb.1700171

PREMISE OF THE STUDY: Bipolar species represent the greatest biogeographical disjunction on Earth, raising many questions about the colonization and adaptive processes behind such striking distribution. We investigated climatic niche differences of five Carex bipolar species in North and South Ameri…

Armitage, D. W., & Jones, S. E. (2020). Coexistence barriers confine the poleward range of a globally distributed plant. Ecology Letters, 23(12), 1838–1848. doi:10.1111/ele.13612 https://doi.org/10.1111/ele.13612

In the study of factors shaping species' poleward range boundaries, climatic constraints are often assigned greater importance than biotic interactions such as competition. However, theory suggests competition can truncate a species' fundamental niche in harsh environments. We test this by challengi…

Lake, T. A., Briscoe Runquist, R. D., & Moeller, D. A. (2020). Predicting range expansion of invasive species: Pitfalls and best practices for obtaining biologically realistic projections. Diversity and Distributions, 26(12), 1767–1779. doi:10.1111/ddi.13161 https://doi.org/10.1111/ddi.13161

Aim: Species distribution models (SDMs) are widely used to forecast potential range expansion of invasive species. However, invasive species occurrence datasets often have spatial biases that may violate key SDM assumptions. In this study, we examined alternative methods of spatial bias correction a…

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…

Brightly, W. H., Hartley, S. E., Osborne, C. P., Simpson, K. J., & Strömberg, C. A. E. (2020). High silicon concentrations in grasses are linked to environmental conditions and not associated with C 4 photosynthesis. Global Change Biology. doi:10.1111/gcb.15343 https://doi.org/10.1111/gcb.15343

The uptake and deposition of silicon (Si) as silica phytoliths is common among land plants and is associated with a variety of functions. Among these, herbivore defense has received significant attention, particularly with regards to grasses and grasslands. Grasses are well known for their high sili…

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…

Lindelof, K., Lindo, J. A., Zhou, W., Ji, X., & Xiang, Q. (Jenny). (2020). Phylogenomics, biogeography, and evolution of the blue‐ or white‐fruited dogwoods ( Cornus ) ‐ insights into morphological and ecological niche divergence following intercontinental geographic isolation. Journal of Systematics and Evolution. doi:10.1111/jse.12676 https://doi.org/10.1111/jse.12676

The eastern Asian (EA)–eastern North American (ENA) floristic disjunction represents a major pattern of phytogeography of the Northern Hemisphere. Despite 20 years of studies dedicated to identification of taxa that display this disjunct pattern, its origin and evolution remain an open question, esp…