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  • ItemOpen Access
    Dataset associated with “Context dependency of disease-mediated competitive release in bat assemblages following white-nose syndrome”
    (Colorado State University. Libraries, 2021) Bombaci, Sara P.; Russell, Robin E.; St. Germain, Michael J.; Dobony, Christopher A.; Ford, W. Mark; Loeb, Susan C.; Jachowski, David S.
    White-nose syndrome (WNS) has caused dramatic declines of several cave-hibernating bat species in North America since 2006, which has increased the activity of non-susceptible species in some geographic areas or during times of night formerly occupied by susceptible species - indicative of disease-mediated competitive release (DMCR). Yet, this pattern has not been evaluated across multiple bat assemblages simultaneously or across multiple years since WNS onset. We evaluated whether WNS altered spatial and temporal niche partitioning in bat assemblages at four locations in the eastern United States using long-term datasets of bat acoustic activity collected before and after WNS arrival. Activity of WNS-susceptible bat species decreased by 79-98% from pre-WNS levels across the four study locations, but only one of our four study sites provided strong evidence supporting the DMCR hypothesis in bats post-WNS. These results suggest that DMCR is likely dependent on the relative difference in activity by susceptible and non-susceptible species groups pre-WNS and the relative decline of susceptible species post-WNS allowing for competitive release, as well as the amount of time that had elapsed post-WNS. Our findings challenge the generality of WNS-mediated competitive release between susceptible and non-susceptible species and further highlight declining activity of some non-susceptible species, especially Lasiurus borealis, across three of four locations in the eastern US. These results underscore the broader need for conservation efforts to address the multiple potential interacting drivers of bat declines on both WNS susceptible and non-susceptible species.
  • ItemOpen Access
    Dataset associated with "Differential influence of humans impacts on age-specific demography underpin trends in an African elephant population"
    (Colorado State University. Libraries, 2021) Wittemyer, George; Daballen, David; Douglas-Hamilton, Iain
    Diagnosing age-specific influences on demographic trends and their drivers in at-risk wildlife species can support the development of targeted conservation interventions. Such information also underpins understanding of life history. Here we assess age-specific demography in wild African elephants, a species whose life history is marked by long life and extreme parental investment. During the 20-year study, survival and its variation were similar between adults and juveniles in contrast to relationships found among many large bodied mammals. Prospective analysis on age-specific Leslie matrices for females demonstrated survival is more influential than fecundity on λ, with sensitivity of both decreasing with age. Results aggregated by stage classes indicate young adults (9-18 years) demonstrated the highest elasticity, followed by preparous juveniles (3-8 years). Mature adults (36+ years) had the lowest aggregate elasticity value. Retrospective analysis parameterized by data from the early and latter periods of the study, characterized by low then high human impact (faster and slower growth respectively), demonstrated fecundity (particularly for adults; 19-35 years) explained the greatest variation in λ observed during the period of low human impact, while survival (particularly juvenile and adult) was more influential during the high human impact period. The oldest females (mature adult stage) weakly influenced population growth despite demonstrating the highest fecundity and their behavioral importance in elephant society. Multiple regression models on survival showed the negative effects of human impacts and population size were the strongest correlates across sexes and ages. Annual rainfall, our metric for environmental conditions, was weakly informative. The presence of dependent young was positively correlated with survival for breeding females, suggesting condition-based mortality filtering during pregnancy. Notwithstanding the stabilizing effect of high juvenile survival on elephant population growth, demographic processes in elephants were similar to those shaping life history in other large herbivores. Implications of the study results with respect to the conservation of elephants and analysis of demographic impact of poaching are discussed, along with the study’s relevance to theories regarding the evolution of life history and parental care.
  • ItemOpen Access
    Data associated with "Interpersonal relationships drive successful team science: an exemplary case-based study"
    (Colorado State University. Libraries, 2020) Love, Hannah; Cross, Jennifer; Fosdick, Bailey; Crooks, Kevin; VandeWoude, Susan; Fisher, Ellen
    Team science, or collaborations between groups of scientists with varying expertise, is required for researching solutions to complex problems of the 21st century. Despite the essential need for such transdisciplinary interactions, knowledge about training scientists and developing personal mastery, a set of principles and practices necessary for team learning, also referred to as the science of team science (SciTS) in productive team interactions is still in its nascent stages. This article reports on a longitudinal case study of an exemplary scientific team and evaluates the following question: How do scientists enhance their productivity through participation in transdisciplinary teams? Through a focused SciTS study applying mixed methods, including social network surveys, participant observation, focus groups, interviews, and historical social network data, we found that the interactions of an international, transdisciplinary scientific team trained scientists to become experts in their field, helped the team develop personal mastery, advanced their scientific productivity, and fulfilled the land grant mission. The team’s processes and practices to train new scientists propelled new ideas, collaborations, and research outcomes over a 15-year period. This case study highlights that in addition to specific scientific discoveries, scientific progress benefits from developing and forming interpersonal relationships among scientists from diverse disciplines.
  • ItemOpen Access
    Data associated with "Resilience and regime shifts: Do novel communities impede ecological recovery in a historically metal-contaminated stream?"
    (Colorado State University. Libraries, 2019) Wolff, Brian A.; Duggan, Sam B.; Clements, William H.
    Novel communities that result from exposure to contaminants and other anthropogenic stressors often persist in ecosystems that have experienced regime shifts. Because these systems may not return to pre-disturbance conditions after removal of the stressor, understanding the ecological consequences of regime shifts has important implications for how restoration success is defined. Long-term observational studies can potentially identify regime shifts in disturbed ecosystems; however, experimental approaches may be necessary to demonstrate their ecological consequences. We report results of a long-term (28 year) observational study and a series of stream mesocosm experiments that investigated a regime shift in a mining-contaminated watershed. We tested the hypothesis that establishment of a novel, metal-tolerant macroinvertebrate community in a previously contaminated stream impeded recovery of sensitive species, despite significant improvements in water quality over the past two decades. Despite significant improvements in water quality, abundance and species richness, we observed persistent changes in community composition and trophic structure downstream from a former source of metal contamination. Downstream communities were dominated by large, metal-tolerant caddisflies that likely impeded colonization by metal-sensitive groups (e.g., grazing mayflies). Mesocosm experiments conducted with reference and downstream communities demonstrated that novel communities retained their tolerance to metals, but were significantly more sensitive to other stressors. We suggest that the failure of downstream communities to recover represented a contaminant-induced regime shift that resulted from the sustained dominance of metal-tolerant species. Restoration ecologists generally consider increased species diversity or abundance of recreationally/commercially important species as indicators of restoration success. However, few stream restoration projects have quantified ecological resilience, and none have included a significant experimental component. Our research is the first to experimentally demonstrate that novel communities in a stream recovering from historical metal pollution have lower resilience to other (e.g., non-metal) stressors. These results have important implications for how restoration success is defined. In systems where restoration to pre-disturbance conditions is unlikely, a better understanding of the ecological resilience of novel communities may be critical for assessing the restoration success. We suggest that resilience to novel stressors is an important indicator of restoration effectiveness that may be applicable in other aquatic ecosystems.
  • ItemOpen Access
    Adult female mule deer global positioning system radio collar data from the Piceance Basin, CO, USA, 2008 – 2010
    (Colorado State University. Libraries, 2016) Northrup, Joe; Anderson, Chuck
    These data represent GPS radio collar data from adult female mule deer (> 1 year old) on their winter range in the Piceance Basin in NW Colorado. The data are from 54 unique individuals fit with collars set to attempt a relocation once every 5 hours. As data represent the precise locations of a hunted species, the locations are relative locations: a constant value has been subtracted from each location. The original projection of the data is NAD 1983 UTM Zone 12N.