Science Enabled by Specimen Data

Allstädt, F. J., Koutsodendris, A., Appel, E., Rösler, W., Reichgelt, T., Kaboth-Bahr, S., … Pross, J. (2021). Late Pliocene to early Pleistocene climate dynamics in western North America based on a new pollen record from paleo-Lake Idaho. Palaeobiodiversity and Palaeoenvironments. doi:10.1007/s12549-020-00460-1 https://doi.org/10.1007/s12549-020-00460-1

Marked by the expansion of ice sheets in the high latitudes, the intensification of Northern Hemisphere glaciation across the Plio/Pleistocene transition at ~ 2.7 Ma represents a critical interval of late Neogene climate evolution. To date, the characteristics of climate change in North America duri…

Shaw, E. C., Fowler, R., Ohadi, S., Bayly, M. J., Barrett, R. A., Tibbits, J., … Cousens, R. D. (2020). Explaining the worldwide distributions of two highly mobile species: Cakile edentula and Cakile maritima. Journal of Biogeography. doi:10.1111/jbi.14024 https://doi.org/10.1111/jbi.14024

Aim: If we are able to determine the geographic origin of an invasion, as well as its known area of introduction, we can better appreciate the innate environmental tolerance of a species and the strength of selection for adaptation that colonizing populations have undergone. It also enables us to ma…

Brendel, M. R., Schurr, F. M., & Sheppard, C. S. (2020). Inter‐ and intraspecific selection in alien plants: How population growth, functional traits and climate responses change with residence time. Global Ecology and Biogeography. doi:10.1111/geb.13228 https://doi.org/10.1111/geb.13228

Aim: When alien species are introduced to new ranges, climate or trait mismatches may initially constrain their population growth. However, inter‐ and intraspecific selection in the new environment should cause population growth rates to increase with residence time. Using a species‐for‐time approac…

Ebersbach, J., Tkach, N., Röser, M., & Favre, A. (2020). The Role of Hybridisation in the Making of the Species-Rich Arctic-Alpine Genus Saxifraga (Saxifragaceae). Diversity, 12(11), 440. doi:10.3390/d12110440 https://doi.org/10.3390/d12110440

Evolutionary processes fuelling rapid species diversification are not yet fully understood, although their major contribution to overall patterns of plant biodiversity is well established. Hybridisation is among the least understood of these processes, despite its multifaceted role in speciation pro…

Yi, S., Jun, C.-P., Jo, K., Lee, H., Kim, M.-S., Lee, S. D., … Lim, J. (2020). Asynchronous multi-decadal time-scale series of biotic and abiotic responses to precipitation during the last 1300 years. Scientific Reports, 10(1). doi:10.1038/s41598-020-74994-x https://doi.org/10.1038/s41598-020-74994-x

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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…

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…

Li, K., Wang, J., Qiao, L., Zheng, R., Ma, Y., Chen, Y., … Liu, H. (2020). Diversity of Reproductive Phenology Among Subtropical Grasses Is Constrained by Evolution and Climatic Niche. Frontiers in Ecology and Evolution, 8. doi:10.3389/fevo.2020.00181 https://doi.org/10.3389/fevo.2020.00181

Reproductive phenology is sensitive to climatic changes and is associated with species functional types, distribution ranges, and their corresponding climatic niches. Phylogenetic niche conservatism in reproductive phenology also constrains its diversity and the distribution of species. Therefore, w…

O’Connell, E., & Savage, J. (2020). Extended leaf phenology has limited benefits for invasive species growing at northern latitudes. Biological Invasions. doi:10.1007/s10530-020-02301-w https://doi.org/10.1007/s10530-020-02301-w

Many understory woody invasive plants in North America leaf out earlier or retain leaves later than their native associates. This extended leaf phenology is thought to grant invasive species an advantage over native species because spring and fall are crucial times for light access and carbon acquis…