Two new papers about blue tits on Corsica

I recently read two new papers about blue tits in Corsica: Dubuc-Messier et al. (2017 Behav. Ecol.), and Dubuc-Messier et al. (2018 Evol. Biol.). The 2018 paper was interested in whether the differences between the evergreen and deciduous ecotypes on Corsica were genetic or a plastic response to the different habitat types. They took 7-12 day old nestlings and raised them in a common garden, … Continue reading Two new papers about blue tits on Corsica

The interesting case of blue tits in France

[Update: Four years after this blog post, I published a paper in Ecology Letters that was partly inspired by this system: Carryover effects from natal habitat type upon competitive ability lead to trait divergence or source–sink dynamics] I’ve recently been reading about a several decade long study centred around blue tits in France and on the island of Corsica. The work is being carried out … Continue reading The interesting case of blue tits in France

Monitoring for conservation

McDonald-Madden (2010; TREE): Is monitoring worthwhile? The benefits of the information gained from monitoring do not always outweigh the costs of acquiring it. For example, if one’s management strategy is not dependent upon the state of the system, one does not need to monitor. Or if one is unsure about the cause of decline, it may make more sense to spend resources researching that rather … Continue reading Monitoring for conservation

Stability in large webs

Allesina & Tang (2012 Nature): An extension of analytic, Wigner semicircle theorem-like, stability criteria to predator-prey, competition and mutualism cases. Finds predator-prey interactions permit stability in networks as large and complex as real ones. Hierarchy is: competition-mutualism mixture, random, predator-prey. Finds that stability is less likely when both predator-prey networks and mutualistic networks are given more realistic structure (i.e. niche-model structure and nestedness respectively). Continue reading Stability in large webs