What we’re reading- July 4, 2014

Two salamander species, one habitat, vastly different population structure
Salamanders with similar ecological characteristics have different genetic structure in the same landscape. Highlights that similar species might respond differently to habitat change because of small life history differences.

Watch out NYC rats, there’s a new predator in town!
First time a fisher (Martes pennanti) is recorded in the Bronx. This mustelid is making a comeback. Nearly extirpated from being overhunted for its fur, it is now showing up in one of the world’s biggest cities.

Adaptation in Mountain Pine Beetles
Mountain Pine Beetles (Dendroctonus ponderosae) are a serious pest killing lodgepole pines which result in trophic cascades as species dependent on the pines for food resources no longer have access to those resources. Warmer winters have been implicated in beetle outbreaks. This paper (OA) investigates genomic changes in the beetles in relation to their northward range expansion.

A guide for interpreting social science results for conservation scientists
This paper (subscription) argues that natural scientists may misinterpret social science results and presents a guide for both correct interpretation as well as study design. The authors note the continuing importance of social science research for conservationists.


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