Questions tagged [ecology]

The study of the spatial and temporal patterns of the distribution and abundance of organisms, including causes and consequences (Scheiner, S.M. and Willig, M.R., 2008. A general theory of ecology. Theoretical Ecology, 1(1), pp.21-28. doi:10.1007/s12080-007-0002-0)

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Has anyone seen/read interspecies competition that is different at spatial scale for the same group of animals?

I work at a highly fragmented wildlife sanctuary in North Borneo, Malaysia. We have 8 species of hornbills here and from our observation they've grown to be less territorial in terms of where they ...
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What is the thickness of the biosphere?

In other words, what is the vertical distance between the deepest and highest point on Earth where life is found? Life has been discovered at the bottom of the Mariana Trench, 13 km below sea level. ...
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Escaping resource limitations during tumor evolution

In their discussion of the importance of r- and K-selection on tumors, Aktipis et al. (2013; figure 3) provide the following illustration of a hypothetical cancer growth curve: In it, you can see ...
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Negative association between habitat quality and reproductive success in birds

I'm looking for bird studies that have found either a negative correlation or no correlation between habitat quality and reproductive success. Or in other words, bird studies that have found that ...
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Caloric Mimicry

Was thinking about natural "zero calorie" sweetness and how these compounds could come to be via evolution. I was specifically thinking about monk fruit. While artificial selection likely ...
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Devonian Fish Diversity--What Would it Have Looked Like?

For 70 million years, the oceans, lakes and rivers of the world teemed with seven groups of fish: Placodermi Acanthodii Agnatha Chondrichthyes Sarcopterygii Actinopterygii Now two of those ...
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What do groundhogs and other subsurface-tunnel dwelling creatures do in heavy rains to avoid harm?

I notice groundhogs and many other tunneling creatures in my yard, the same yard which became pretty flooded during heavy rainfall. I don't see wildlife out during rain storms, but not long after, ...
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What is the effect of pesticides on worm growth?

As a new semester begins, we were asked to propose ideas for investigatory projects. Our idea revolves around the effects of pesticides on non-target organisms. Since frequent use of pesticides may ...
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Food Intake versus ability to flee among birds, particularly the hummingbird?

Logically speaking, if a hummingbird drinks too much nectar, it will be temporarily overweight and less able or unable to fly to escape danger. However if the same hummingbird doesn't drink enough ...
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Can we infer the orientation of a moose's head from the teeth patterns on tree trunks?

Background I am interested in studying the distribution and patterns of behaviour of moose (Alces alces). Moose chew bark off of the trunks of trees, especially Populus tremuloides. See some of the ...
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Are animal whiskers a useful monitoring tool?

I have come across studies that have used stable isotope values from seal/sea lion whiskers to infer foraging ecology. However, I am also aware that whiskers can fall off and then grow back. Is there ...
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Apportionment models, niche theory, neutral theory

I am trying to understand the relation between apportionment models, niche theory, and neutral theory of biodiversity. Wikipedia seems to suggest that the first two are the same thing, whereas the ...
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Sediment Size and Mayfly (Explanation + Literature)

I am doing investigation into association of sediment size with the movement of mayfly nymphs in a choice chamber, sampling the organisms from a stream. I will be doing a chi square test to determine ...
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What global habitat classification systems are there?

I am an IT guy, not a biologist or ecologist, but have ended up with (roughly) the task "given this Latitude/Longitude pair, return the 'habitat' at that location". The points of interest in ...
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What to do with this Araucaria sprout

I live in Santiago, Chile, and I see this Araucaria frequently: For what I have read, it seems to be a female A. angustifolia individual (leaves are 2-3 cm long and a few mm wide, with a very sharp ...
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What's the lowest atmospheric pressure a tardigrade can remain active in?

I'm not asking what atmospheric pressures they can survive (we now they can survive the vacuum of space) I'm wondering at what point a deficit of atmospheric pressure would cause them to enter one of ...
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Does trapper/hunter harvest reflect abundance or community composition?

I'm working on a study where a single professional trapper removes furbearers and corvids (who the trapper is changes annually). I would suspect that the composition of the harvest would be strongly ...
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Is there any example, where cooperative behaviour of predators induce fear in prey population?

I am basically from math background and doing Ph.D in mathematical biology. So I am not so efficient in biology. But my problem based on cooperative behaviour of animals during hunting which is ...
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How did fig tree take root in trunk of palm tree?

Please see pictures below. I never saw anything like this. Do the roots of the fig tree penetrate the trunk of the palm tree? Is there a symbiotic relationship between the two?
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Should you perform an ordination (such as PCA) of abiotic variables before a Redundancy analysis (RDA)?

I have a dataset of viral 'OTUs' across various sample points from different sites/times. I also have meta-data collected at these same sample points, for things like temperature and the ...
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Why does Fallopia Japonica not cause issues in Japan to where it is native unlike other countries?

Fallopia Japonica (also known as Japanese Knotweed), is currently causing a huge issue in the English countryside where it was introduced. This is due to the fact that it spreads and grows rather ...
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The mechanism of the evolutionary rate hypothesis

There are several hypotheses for explaining the latitudinal gradients in species diversity (link). Of which, the evolutionary rate hypothesis states that warm temperature increases the rate of ...
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Terrarium Compatibility: Millipedes with Carnivorous Plants?

I have a child that loves his large millipedes (Desert Millipedes) and Venus Fly Traps. He's also been wanting to get some Sundew Savages. Given this little collection and his real enjoyment of ...
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Pattern in parental care behaviour from lower to higher animals?

I was studying about parental care behavior. There seems a pattern present in this behavior in case of vertebrates. The more evolutionary advanced class the animal belongs to, the greater effort an ...
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Names for the degrees for symptoms from drought (or other damage) done to trees

Looking out my window, I see trees suffering from drought. I once knew the name for the degrees visible, but I have forgotten and can't find it on the net. Attempt at describing "level of dryness" ...
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Classification of degree of infested areas by pine processionary moth on regions

I'm making a thesis about pine processionary moth distribution on the regions of algeria! i'm making tests about if there are spatial autocorrelation of this insects on the regions. and i'm doing ...
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phosphorous availability to mycorrhizae and parent plant, timing - paper search

I'm researching phosphorous uptake in monocots to develop planting mixes for riparian planting. I recently saw a paper suggesting (the author lacked proof) that root zone mycorrhizae may solubilize ...
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Does the edge effect promote biodiversity?

I define the edge effect as: A term used to describe what occurs at habitat boundaries where two bordering communities influence one another. My question is whether it generally leads to an increase ...
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Range for which the Verhulst-Pearl model is a good approximate

The Verhulst-Pearl model describes the growth of a population using the differential equation, $$\frac{dN}{dt}=rN \left(\frac{K-N}{K} \right)$$ where N is the population (no. of organisms), r, the ...
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Are there any studies on the solar latitude limits of different plant species, beyond which they wouldn't thrive even with suitable weather?

Not sure whether this belongs here or in the Gardening & Landscaping StackExchange, but here goes... According to maps provided in the paper Present and future Köppen-Geiger climate ...
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2 votes
1 answer
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What is a partial regulator?

Source: MY textbook-NCERT 12th Biology-Ch: Organisms and Population (Pg 7 of pdf/Pg 223 of the book) Is this graph for Partial regulators correct? Isn't it that animals tend to be regulators first ...
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What does it mean for Caenorhabditis species to be "pseudoparasitic"?

In this Wormbook chapter, Kiontke says that some Caenorhabditis species live "pseudoparasitically" on warm-blooded animals. What does it mean? What is a pseudoparasite? I understand a parasite to be ...
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What accounts for the apparent lack of biodiversity in "bamboo forests"?

While hiking on the Hawaiian island of Maui, I passed from a forest with normal variety in trees and other flora, to a "bamboo forest" area in which the only plants that I could see were bamboo. This ...
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Why don't acacia trees prefer increasing tannin levels in their leaves rather than leaving them high?

According to this article, the Acacia tree has a chemical defence system which leads to the release of ethylene in the surroundings when a herbivore grazes on it. This leads to an increase in tannin ...
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Is there any standard of notation for ecological diagrams?

General Question Is there any convention of how to express different types of relations (e.g., eats, turns into, is beneficial to) and agents (e.g., species, nutrient) in an ecological diagram? I ...
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Is the inhalation of ammonia a possible health problem for bats in an artificial small volume winter roost?

About 70 bats (Nyctalus noctula) spend their winter in an artificial small volume (0,050 cubic meters) winter roost located in the attic of a building. There is a single small exit to the outside ...
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Is there a name for dominant-intraspecific competition?

Some ecological competition dynamics have particular names (e.g.: scramble competition, contest competition, ...). I wonder if there's such a name for competition dynamics where the interspecific ...
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A question about a succession study by Chapin et al. (1994)

The succession study in Glacier Bay, Alaska (Chapin et al., 1994) is an example that is used in almost all introductory texts on ecological succession. In the study, the effect of each succession ...
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Ecological specialization and relative abundance

I am reading Evolution in Changing Environments by R. Levin but have a hard time. Claim At page 25, Levin says as a conclusion The more efficient a caste at meeting the contingency for which it ...
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Stable isotope sample preparation: Bone Collagen

I am performing research in which I need to extract bone collagen from the foot bones of American Beaver (Castor canadensis). I have read through the literature fairly thoroughly on both the ...
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2 votes
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Bergmann's rule and Allen's rule: endotherms and ectotherms

Surface area to volume ratio (in terms of heat conservation) is not the only mechanism, but it is still an important mechanism for explaining Bergmann's rule and Allen's rule. Given that, I want to ...
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How do climate and location affect the Pine Processionary moth?

I have statistics on the occurence of the Pine Processionary moth (Thaumetopoea pityocampa); we have the regions that are located in Algeria, infested area in percent, the defiliation degree (small, ...
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1 vote
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Abilities used to survive against natural enemies: directional selection or frequency-dependent selection?

Regarding abilities used to survive predators and parasites, are they subjected more to directional selection or frequency-dependent selection? It's usually that host-parasite coevolution is ...
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the effect of aquatic photoautotrophs on CO2 concentration in the air

The CO2 concentration in the air is more strongly influenced by the northern hemisphere than the southern hemisphere. A given explanation is that the northern hemisphere contains more terrestrial ...
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What is the effect of an acidic solution on hydrolytic enzymes?

I'm working on a school research project and my research question is "What is the effect of increasing concentrations of Acid X on hydrolytic enzymes, measured through the loss of mass of leaf ...
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What do oxpeckers eat from thick-skinned hippopotamuses and rhinoceroses?

Noted for their thick skin are both rhinoceroses (1.5 to 5 cm) and hippopotamuses (6 cm). They are further noted for their symbiotic relationship with bird called an oxpecker: Both the English and ...
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1 vote
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Why was the precipitation-streamflow correlation greater in the intact catchment at Hubbard BrookI

I gave an assignment and ran a class on this data last year. https://lifediscoveryed.org/r290/hubbard_brook_streamflow_response_to_deforestation Its a classic small watershed experiment where ...
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1 vote
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Does the preservation fluid (ethanol or formaldehyde) leach heavy metals from mollusc tissue?

In a thread on researchgate, the concern was raised that long term exposure to unbuffered preservation fluids such as ethanol or formaldehyde may leach heavy metals from biological samples due to a ...
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1 vote
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Inequality factor for similarity sensitive diversity

In a research article, Lou Jost has introduced the concept of inequality factor. The paper is "The relation between evenness and diversity", published in 2010. Inequality factor allows an intuitive ...
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What's the lowest temperature a tardigrade can remain active at?

There's a lot of information floating around the net about how tough they are & what they can survive, like "We now know that some tardigrades can tolerate being frozen to -272.8 °C". But any ...
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