Science Enabled by Specimen Data

Margaroni, S., K. B. Petersen, R. Gleadow, and M. Burd. 2019. The role of spore size in the global pattern of co‐occurrence among Selaginella species. Journal of Biogeography 46: 807–815. https://doi.org/10.1111/jbi.13532

Aim: Separation of regeneration niches may promote coexistence among closely related plant species, but there is little evidence that regeneration traits affect species ranges at broad geographical scales. We address patterns of co‐occurrence within the genus Selaginella, an ancient lineage of free‐…

Karger, D. N., M. Kessler, O. Conrad, P. Weigelt, H. Kreft, C. König, and N. E. Zimmermann. 2019. Why tree lines are lower on islands—Climatic and biogeographic effects hold the answer J. Grytnes [ed.],. Global Ecology and Biogeography 28: 839–850. https://doi.org/10.1111/geb.12897

Aim: To determine the global position of tree line isotherms, compare it with observed local tree limits on islands and mainlands, and disentangle the potential drivers of a difference between tree line and local tree limit. Location: Global. Time period: 1979–2013. Major taxa studied: Trees. Method…

Liu, X., T. M. Blackburn, T. Song, X. Li, C. Huang, and Y. Li. 2019. Risks of Biological Invasion on the Belt and Road. Current Biology 29: 499-505.e4. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.cub.2018.12.036

China’s Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) is an unprecedented global development program that involves nearly half of the world’s countries [1]. It not only will have economic and political influences, but also may generate multiple environmental challenges and is a focus of considerable academic and p…

Sheppard, C. S., and F. M. Schurr. 2018. Biotic resistance or introduction bias? Immigrant plant performance decreases with residence times over millennia. Global Ecology and Biogeography. https://doi.org/10.1111/geb.12844

Aim: Invasions are dynamic processes. Invasive spread causes the geographical range size of alien species to increase with residence time. However, with time native competitors and antagonists can adapt to invaders. This build‐up of biotic resistance may eventually limit the invader’s performance an…

Peterson, A. T., A. Asase, D. Canhos, S. de Souza, and J. Wieczorek. 2018. Data Leakage and Loss in Biodiversity Informatics. Biodiversity Data Journal 6. https://doi.org/10.3897/bdj.6.e26826

The field of biodiversity informatics is in a massive, “grow-out” phase of creating and enabling large-scale biodiversity data resources. Because perhaps 90% of existing biodiversity data nonetheless remains unavailable for science and policy applications, the question arises as to how these existin…

Inman, R., J. Franklin, T. Esque, and K. Nussear. 2018. Spatial sampling bias in the Neotoma paleoecological archives affects species paleo-distribution models. Quaternary Science Reviews 198: 115–125. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.quascirev.2018.08.015

The ability to infer paleo-distributions with limited knowledge of absence makes species distribution modeling (SDM) a useful tool for exploring paleobiogeographic questions. Spatial sampling bias is a known issue when modeling extant species. Here we quantify the spatial sampling bias in a North Am…

Goldstein, E. B., E. V. Mullins, L. J. Moore, R. G. Biel, J. K. Brown, S. D. Hacker, K. R. Jay, et al. 2018. Literature-based latitudinal distribution and possible range shifts of two US east coast dune grass species (Uniola paniculataandAmmophila breviligulata). PeerJ 6: e4932. https://doi.org/10.7717/peerj.4932

Previous work on the US Atlantic coast has generally shown that coastal foredunes are dominated by two dune grass species, Ammophila breviligulata (American beachgrass) and Uniola paniculata (sea oats). From Virginia northward, A. breviligulata dominates, while U. paniculata is the dominant grass so…

Joffard, N., F. Massol, M. Grenié, C. Montgelard, and B. Schatz. 2018. Effect of pollination strategy, phylogeny and distribution on pollination niches of Euro‐Mediterranean orchids I. Bartomeus [ed.],. Journal of Ecology 107: 478–490. https://doi.org/10.1111/1365-2745.13013

1.Pollination niches are important components of ecological niches and have played a major role in the diversification of Angiosperms. In this study, we focused on Euro‐Mediterranean orchids, which use diverse pollination strategies and interact with various functional groups of insects. In these or…

Petersen, K. B., and M. Burd. 2018. The adaptive value of heterospory: Evidence from Selaginella. Evolution 72: 1080–1091. https://doi.org/10.1111/evo.13484

Heterospory was a pivotal evolutionary innovation for land plants, but it has never been clear why it evolved. We used the geographic distributions of 114 species of the heterosporous lycophyte Selaginella to explore the functional ecology of microspore and megaspore size, traits that would be corre…

Sheffield, C., and J. Heron. 2018. A new western Canadian record of Epeoloides pilosulus (Cresson), with discussion of ecological associations, distribution and conservation status in Canada. Biodiversity Data Journal 6: e22837. https://doi.org/10.3897/bdj.6.e22837

Background: Epeoloides pilosulus, one of the rarest bees in North America, is a cleptoparasite of Macropis bees which themselves are uncommon oligoleges of oil-producing Lysimachia flowers. Only two specimens of the cleptoparasite have been reported from Canada since the 1960s, both from Nova Scotia…