Science Enabled by Specimen Data

Vasconcelos, T., Boyko, J. D., & Beaulieu, J. M. (2021). Linking mode of seed dispersal and climatic niche evolution in flowering plants. Journal of Biogeography. doi:10.1111/jbi.14292 https://doi.org/10.1111/jbi.14292

Aim: Due to the sessile nature of flowering plants, movements to new geographical areas occur mainly during seed dispersal. Frugivores tend to be efficient dispersers because animals move within the boundaries of their preferable niches, so seeds are more likely to be transported to environments tha…

Alban, D. M., Biersma, E. M., Kadereit, J. W., & Dillenberger, M. S. (2021). Colonization of the Southern Hemisphere by Sagina and Colobanthus (Caryophyllaceae). Plant Systematics and Evolution, 308(1). doi:10.1007/s00606-021-01793-w https://doi.org/10.1007/s00606-021-01793-w

Colobanthus (23 species) and Sagina (30–33 species) together are sister to Facchinia. Whereas Facchinia is distributed in western Eurasia, Colobanthus is almost exclusively distributed in the Southern Hemisphere, and Sagina is distributed in both hemispheres with the highest species diversity in wes…

Van Geel, B., van Leeuwen, J. F. N., Nooren, K., Mol, D., den Ouden, N., van der Knaap, P. W. O., … Lorenzen, E. D. (2022). Diet and environment of Mylodon darwinii based on pollen of a Late-Glacial coprolite from the Mylodon Cave in southern Chile. Review of Palaeobotany and Palynology, 296, 104549. doi:10.1016/j.revpalbo.2021.104549 https://doi.org/10.1016/j.revpalbo.2021.104549

We studied the pollen content of a well-preserved coprolite of a Late-Glacial giant ground sloth (Mylodon darwinii) from the Mylodon Cave, province Última Esperanza, southern Chile. The specimen was obtained in 1909 and has been stored in a museum in the Netherlands since. It was radiocarbon dated t…

Xue, T., Gadagkar, S. R., Albright, T. P., Yang, X., Li, J., Xia, C., … Yu, S. (2021). Prioritizing conservation of biodiversity in an alpine region: Distribution pattern and conservation status of seed plants in the Qinghai-Tibetan Plateau. Global Ecology and Conservation, 32, e01885. doi:10.1016/j.gecco.2021.e01885 https://doi.org/10.1016/j.gecco.2021.e01885

The Qinghai-Tibetan Plateau (QTP) harbors abundant and diverse plant life owing to its high habitat heterogeneity. However, the distribution pattern of biodiversity hotspots and their conservation status remain unclear. Based on 148,283 high-resolution occurrence coordinates of 13,450 seed plants, w…

Schneider, K., Makowski, D., & van der Werf, W. (2021). Predicting hotspots for invasive species introduction in Europe. Environmental Research Letters. doi:10.1088/1748-9326/ac2f19 https://doi.org/10.1088/1748-9326/ac2f19

Plant pest invasions cost billions of Euros each year in Europe. Prediction of likely places of pest introduction could greatly help focus efforts on prevention and control and thus reduce societal costs of pest invasions. Here, we test whether generic data-driven risk maps of pest introduction, val…

Zhang, M., Wei, R., Xiang, Q., Ebihara, A., & Zhang, X. (2021). Integrative taxonomy of the Selaginella helvetica group based on morphological, molecular and ecological data. TAXON. doi:10.1002/tax.12565 https://doi.org/10.1002/tax.12565

The Eurasian and Mediterranean Selaginella helvetica group is one of the taxonomically challenging groups in the cosmopolitan lycophyte genus Selaginella. Species of the S. helvetica group are all small plants with lax strobili composed of more or less isomorphic sporophylls (isosporophylls) that ar…

Sitzia, T., Kudrnovsky, H., Müller, N., & Michielon, B. (2021). Biological Flora of Central Europe: Myricaria germanica (L.) Desv. Perspectives in Plant Ecology, Evolution and Systematics, 125629. doi:10.1016/j.ppees.2021.125629 https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ppees.2021.125629

Myricaria germanica (German tamarisk or false tamarisk), Tamaricaceae, is a pioneer shrub native to the Eurasian temperate regions where it colonises gravel bars in braided rivers. Over the past 150 years, human alterations of rivers have caused its dramatic decline in Europe. This paper reviews the…

Baumbach, L., Warren, D. L., Yousefpour, R., & Hanewinkel, M. (2021). Climate change may induce connectivity loss and mountaintop extinction in Central American forests. Communications Biology, 4(1). doi:10.1038/s42003-021-02359-9 https://doi.org/10.1038/s42003-021-02359-9

The tropical forests of Central America serve a pivotal role as biodiversity hotspots and provide ecosystem services securing human livelihood. However, climate change is expected to affect the species composition of forest ecosystems, lead to forest type transitions and trigger irrecoverable losses…

Roberts, J., & Florentine, S. (2021). Biology, distribution and control of the invasive species Ulex europaeus (Gorse): A global synthesis of current and future management challenges and research gaps. Weed Research. doi:10.1111/wre.12491 https://doi.org/10.1111/wre.12491

Ulex europaeus (Gorse) is one of the most invasive shrubs in the world, being now found in more than 50 countries where it economically and environmentally degrades the land. This highly versatile shrub can live more than 30 years and produce over 18,000 fertile seeds annually that can remain viable…

Kriticos, D. J., Ireland, K. B., Morin, L., Kumaran, N., Rafter, M. A., Ota, N., & Raghu, S. (2021). Integrating ecoclimatic niche modelling methods into classical biological control programmes. Biological Control, 160, 104667. doi:10.1016/j.biocontrol.2021.104667 https://doi.org/10.1016/j.biocontrol.2021.104667

Much of the success of a classical biological control programme hinges on identifying effective candidate agents, and once approved for release deploying them in the range invaded by the target organism at site-specific times of the year when they have the best chance of establishing. While suitable…