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Cover April

The photo on the April cover shows two black legged kittiwakes at nests on Puffin Island, one of the three study sites in the paper " Environmental heterogeneity amplifies behavioural response to a temporal cycle ". The paper studies the effect of a predictable...

Citizen science shows how predation risk effects can reduce lifetime fitness

Simple observations can sometimes lead to unexpected scientific discoveries. In 1996, wildlife biologist and educator Dick Thiel was musing about the abundance of North American porcupines (Erethizon dorsatum) near his home in central Wisconsin. That winter he started...

What happens in the ecosystem if an apex predator is removed?

Our study reports the results of the first broad-scale field study investigating the ecological role of Australia’s largest terrestrial predator, the dingo, in tropical savannah ecosystems. We did this by comparing the abundances of herbivores, an introduced...

Water and the lack of it shape tundra vegetation patterns

Water has a control over vegetation. Whether there is too much or too little of it, it has an impact on the spatial patterns of plants, mosses and lichens. This is evident in arid ecosystems – about but what about cold ecosystems which are considered as temperature...

Editor's Choice March

The first editor’s choice is the forum by Patrick & Yuan: ‘ The challenges that spatial context present for synthesizing community ecology across scales ’. The rationale for their forum is the common mismatch between community theory and its application within a...

How long time does a T. Rex take to digest a seed?

When an animal ingests a seed, how long does it take for the seed to pass through its gut? This is an important question for plant ecologists, because seed retention time (SRT) can determine the distance the seed can travel. A number of studies have measured SRT for a...

WHY this variation in vulnerability?

As I child, I could only dream about the Amazon Rainforest. Few places had such a stronghold on my imagination – a mystical and remote place teeming with unparalleled diversity and exotic creatures. But when, decades later, I made my inaugural trip to Manaus, Brazil, I...

Cover February

The cover for our February Issue shows "The butterfly Charaxes jasius, recolonizing a burn area 10 days after a high intensity wildfire (Òdena fire, Barcelona, NE Spain; August 2015); photo: JG Pausas. The photo is from the paper Generalized fire response strategies in...

Generalists are the most urban-tolerant birds

What makes an urban bird (Figure 1)? Are there certain ecological and life history traits which make some species predisposed to urban living (Figure 2)? This is a longstanding question in urban ecology: see here, here, and here for just a few select examples. Much of...

Small text, big returns

Our Oikos way to increase healthy debate and speculation in ecology Speculation in scientific articles is frequently discouraged, even though it can lead to new hypotheses and debate. Too often, as well, co-authors seek a consensus or commonality regarding the...

New Year and EC January

Happy New Year to all Oikos readers! The editorial team wishes you a healthy and prosperous 2019, with lots of exciting science! Our first issue of 2019 contains a collection of 13 fascinating articles, ranging from evolutionary processes of adaptation and sex-ration...

Cover January

The cover on our January Issue shows a moose (Alces alces) drinking in the boreal forest of Cape Breton Highlands National Park, Nova Scotia, Canada. When large terrestrial herbivores like moose are abundant, their browsing in terrestrial ecosystems can have cross-...

Temporal changes with life long effects

Walking through central European meadows among hills and mountains, in the middle of spring, we are amazed by the striking beauty of the plethora of flowers blooming, and the hundreds of insects feasting on the blossoms. Watching butterflies, we notice them stopping on...

Seasonal effects on stream community structures

Think about your garden, where you might plant vegetables in late spring and expect to harvest them throughout the summer. Fertilizers are often required to provide nutrients to the plants, and pests like insects might consume the plants before you can harvest them...

Forum: Eltonian niche and functional diversity

One of this month's Editor's choice papers, which is also Forum paper, has the title "Bringing the Eltonian niche into functional diversity". The first author, Matthias Dehling sent us a photo.... This composite photo shows a Western Lowland Gorilla (Gorilla gorilla)...

December cover

The photo on our December cover shows a Laughing falcon, Herpetotheres cachinnans , scoring a human-dominated landscape at Costa Rica. Photo: Daniel Karp The paper "Do correlated responses to multiple environmental changes exacerbate or mitigate species loss?" is...

There is a hole in my litterbag….

Disaster. A ruined experiment. Returning after a year to find half of the experiment eaten! Usually plant material, or litter, rots when buried outside, so we were expecting some of the litter to have disappeared through decomposition. But eaten? What would eat plant...

November cover

The photo on the November cover shows a Bombus appositus legitimately visiting a Corydalis caseana flower on an inflorescence bearing both robbed and unrobbed flowers. This interaction is studied in the paper Why are some plant–nectar robber interactions commensalisms...

Seabirds of habit

Breakfast at the nearest coffee shop in the morning, lunch from the local convenience store, quick drink in your regular on the way home. Sound familiar? Just like we can be creatures of habit, new research has revealed that seabirds, too, adapt to hourly cycles to...

One or more embryos? A parasitoidic dilemma....

The small (1.5 mm) parasitoid wasp female in the photo is inserting her ovipositor into the egg of a moth, which she uses as a host for her young. After she has laid her own egg within the host, the growing embryo divides many times to form a clone of genetically...

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