H Dieter Oschadleus
Other affiliations: University of the Witwatersrand
Bio: H Dieter Oschadleus is an academic researcher from University of Cape Town. The author has contributed to research in topics: Nest & Population. The author has an hindex of 8, co-authored 39 publications receiving 170 citations. Previous affiliations of H Dieter Oschadleus include University of the Witwatersrand.
TL;DR: Nest construction, then, appears to be a multi-dimensional task whereby birds take into account material's structural properties, material proximity to the nest site and territory quality.
Abstract: Building a structurally robust nest is crucial for reproductive success in many birds. However, we know little about the criteria birds use to select material or where they go to collect it. Here we observed the material collection of male Cape Weavers (Ploceus capensis). Males typically selected long, strong material to build their nests and each male collected material from different locations. Males that built more nests nested in a different area of the colony and flew further to collect nest material than did males that built fewer nests. As these males that flew further to collect material had longer tails and wings and attracted more females to their territories than did males that flew shorter distances, they may have traded off the travel costs of collecting nest materials with benefits gained from holding a territory in a more ‘desirable’ part of the colony. Nest construction, then, appears to be a multi-dimensional task whereby birds take into account material’s structural properties, material proximity to the nest site and territory quality. Males that do this effectively both attract more mates and provide structurally sound nests for their young.
TL;DR: The Taung hominid type specimen of Australopithecus africanus was found to have an apparent isotopic age younger than the age of deposition in this paper.
Abstract: Earlier attempts to date the Taung hominid type specimen of Australopithecus africanus Dart yielded conflicting results. Recent faunal studies pointed to an age of 2.3 myr. Radioisotopic results suggested 1.0 myr. New uranium studies reveal that the Thabaseek (the oldest Taung tufa) was not a closed system and that younger uranium entered the tufa after initial deposition, producing an apparent isotopic age younger than the age of deposition. The Thabaseek isotopic dates provide only a terminus ad quem and this technique is therefore not applicable to the older Taung tufas. Delson's dating (2.3 myr) of cercopithecoids from Hrdlicka's pinnacle ca. 50 m from the hominid site provides the best available approximation to the age of the hominid. In our new Taung excavation, stratigraphic analysis indicates that the hominid may somewhat predate most identified fauna. Sedimentologically the hominid matrix proves to be of fluvial deposition, and hence closely resembles one Hrdlicka deposit, both samples differing appreciably from all other Taung samples which bespeak eolian deposition. Thus, the conditions under which the hominid-bearing stratum was deposited were virtually identical to those pertaining to one of the Hrdlicka deposits. The newest results show that Taung was not the youngest South African australopithecine site and eliminate the discrepancy between the relative ages of the Taung A. africanus africanus and the Sterkfontein A. africanus transvaalensis.
TL;DR: In this article, the authors investigated the influence of patch isolation, size and quality on weaver bird movement between ringing locations in Cape Town, a growing city within a global biodiversity hotspot.
Abstract: Urbanisation often has profound impacts on ecological processes. Management of these impacts is central to urban conservation efforts. We used data from 6591 individually ringed weaver birds from 42 ringing locations to investigate the influence that the urban matrix, as well as patch isolation, size and quality, had on weaver bird movement between ringing locations in Cape Town, a growing city within a global biodiversity hotspot. Distance-based linear models revealed that proximity to other sites was the dominant predictor of weaver movement while the site variables (wetland size and bird abundance) had a limited and inconclusive influence. Once the variation explained by the proximity and site variables had been accounted for, the composition of the surrounding urban matrix, the length of the least cost path between wetlands, and the presence of rivers as potential movement corridors (measured at three spatial scales) all had little influence on weaver movement. Analysis of the weaver bird movement-wetland network using social network analysis showed that the network is simple, clustered, and non-random, with relatively high vulnerability to node loss and some indication of preferential attachment (i.e., increased use of more used sites). Since proximity (site isolation) is the dominant influence on weaver movements, and the network is already sparse, further wetland loss is likely to reduce population viability. Our results match the predictions of classical theory and suggest that patch management will matter more for wetland passerines than matrix management.
TL;DR: The large differences in timing and duration of moult in this study only support the short-distance ‘rainfall-migration’ model for Red-billed Queleas in southern Africa.
Abstract: The onset and duration of primary moult were investigated for adult Red-billed Queleas (Quelea quelea) in southern Africa. The duration of moult was shortest in Namibia (75 days), intermediate in Botswana (83 days) and longest in Gauteng Province (101 days) and the Eastern Cape (124 days), South Africa. The timing of the onset of moult was similar in Namibia and Botswana (21 and 31 May respectively), but considerably earlier in the Eastern Cape and Gauteng Province (6 and 23 April respectively). Completion of primary moult was well synchronised, ending in August in all sub-regions. Production of feather mass was uniform and speed of moult was controlled by the rate of growth of individual primaries. When moult was faster, fewer feathers grew simultaneously, possibly to reduce the aerodynamic effect of the wing-gap. Red-billed Queleas are thought to migrate relative to the movement of rain fronts, allowing possible multiple breeding events in one season. In southern Africa, Queleas are present throughout their range all year, and a proportion of the population moves short distances in apparently random directions. The large differences in timing and duration of moult in this study only support the short-distance ‘rainfall-migration’ model.
TL;DR: Clutch size and body mass were the most influential covariates, both with and without the inclusion of phylogenetic effects, and a regression model including only these two variables performed well in both of the validation tests.
Abstract: Estimates of annual survival rates of birds are valuable in a wide range of studies of population ecology and conservation. These include modelling studies to assess the impacts of climatic change or anthropogenic mortality for many species for which no reliable direct estimates of survival are available. We evaluate the performance of regression models in predicting adult survival rates of birds from values of demographic and ecological covariates available from textbooks and databases. We estimated adult survival for 67 species using dead recoveries of birds ringed in southern Africa and fitted regression models using five covariates: mean clutch size, mean body mass, mean age at first breeding, diet and migratory tendency. Models including these explanatory variables performed well in predicting adult survival in this set of species, both when phylogenetic relatedness of the species was taken into account using phylogenetic generalized least squares (51% of variation in logit survival explained) and when it was not (48%). Two independent validation tests also indicated good predictive power, as indicated by high correlations of observed with expected values in a leave-one-out cross validation test performed using data from the 67 species (35% of variation in logit survival explained), and when annual survival rates from independent mark-recapture studies of 38 southern African species were predicted from covariates and the regression using dead recoveries (48%). Clutch size and body mass were the most influential covariates, both with and without the inclusion of phylogenetic effects, and a regression model including only these two variables performed well in both of the validation tests (39 and 48% of variation in logit survival explained). Our regression models, including the version with only clutch size and body mass, are likely to perform well in predicting adult survival rate for southern African species for which direct survival estimates are not available.
TL;DR: Preface to the Princeton Landmarks in Biology Edition vii Preface xi Symbols used xiii 1.
Abstract: Preface to the Princeton Landmarks in Biology Edition vii Preface xi Symbols Used xiii 1. The Importance of Islands 3 2. Area and Number of Speicies 8 3. Further Explanations of the Area-Diversity Pattern 19 4. The Strategy of Colonization 68 5. Invasibility and the Variable Niche 94 6. Stepping Stones and Biotic Exchange 123 7. Evolutionary Changes Following Colonization 145 8. Prospect 181 Glossary 185 References 193 Index 201
01 Jan 1985
TL;DR: edited by D.H. Clayton and J. Moore, Oxford University Press, 1997.
Abstract: edited by D.H. Clayton and J. Moore, Oxford University Press, 1997. pound60.00 (hbk)/ pound25.00 (pbk) (xi+473 pages) ISBN 0 19 854893 1/0 19 854892/3.
TL;DR: P Paleoanthropological evidence clearly indicates that hominids evolved in East Africa, and that early Homo inhabited the Rift Valley lake shores, and 'brain-specific' nutrition had and still has significant potential to affect hominid brain evolution.
Abstract: An abundant, balanced dietary intake of long-chain polyunsaturated fatty acids is an absolute requirement for sustaining the very rapid expansion of the hominid cerebral cortex during the last one to two million years. The brain contains 600 g lipid/kg, with a long-chain polyunsaturated fatty acid profile containing approximately equal proportions of arachidonic acid and docosahexaenoic acid. Long-chain polyunsaturated fatty acid deficiency at any stage of fetal and/or infant development can result in irreversible failure to accomplish specific components of brain growth. For the past fifteen million years, the East African Rift Valley has been a unique geological environment which contains many enormous freshwater lakes. Paleoanthropological evidence clearly indicates that hominids evolved in East Africa, and that early Homo inhabited the Rift Valley lake shores. Although earlier hominid species migrated to Eurasia, modern Homo sapiens is believed to have originated in Africa between 100 and 200 thousand years ago, and subsequently migrated throughout the world. A shift in the hominid resource base towards more high-quality foods occurred approximately two million years ago; this was accompanied by an increase in relative brain size and a shift towards modern patterns of fetal and infant development. There is evidence for both meat and fish scavenging, although sophisticated tool industries and organized hunting had not yet developed. The earliest occurrences of modern H. sapiens and sophisticated tool technology are associated with aquatic resource bases. Tropical freshwater fish and shellfish have long-chain polyunsaturated lipid ratios more similar to that of the human brain than any other food source known. Consistent consumption of lacustrine foods could have provided a means of initiating and sustaining cerebral cortex growth without an attendant increase in body mass. A modest intake of fish and shellfish (6-12% total dietary energy intake) can provide more arachidonic acid and especially more docosahexaenoic acid than most diets contain today. Hence, 'brain-specific' nutrition had and still has significant potential to affect hominid brain evolution.
TL;DR: It is concluded that cycles of population expansions and contractions have been a common feature of many bird species during the Quaternary period, likely coinciding with climate cycles.
Abstract: Global climate fluctuations have significantly influenced the distribution and abundance of biodiversity . During unfavorable glacial periods, many species experienced range contraction and frag ...