Robert E. Ricklefs
Other affiliations: University of Pennsylvania, Illinois State Museum, University of Saint Mary of the Lake ...read more
Bio: Robert E. Ricklefs is an academic researcher from University of Missouri–St. Louis. The author has contributed to research in topics: Species richness & Population. The author has an hindex of 110, co-authored 449 publications receiving 45584 citations. Previous affiliations of Robert E. Ricklefs include University of Pennsylvania & Illinois State Museum.
Papers published on a yearly basis
TL;DR: Observations suggest that regional and historical processes, as well as unique events and circumstances, profoundly influence local community structure and ecologists must broaden their concepts of community processes and incorporate data from systematics, biogeography, and paleontology into analyses of ecological patterns and tests of community theory.
Abstract: The species richness (diversity) of local plant and animal assemblages—biological communities—balances regional processes of species formation and geographic dispersal, which add species to communities, against processes of predation, competitive exclusion, adaptation, and stochastic variation, which may promote local extinction During the past three decades, ecologists have sought to explain differences in local diversity by the influence of the physical environment on local interactions among species, interactions that are generally believed to limit the number of coexisting species But diversity of the biological community often fails to converge under similar physical conditions, and local diversity bears a demonstrable dependence upon regional diversity These observations suggest that regional and historical processes, as well as unique events and circumstances, profoundly influence local community structure Ecologists must broaden their concepts of community processes and incorporate data from systematics, biogeography, and paleontology into analyses of ecological patterns and tests of community theory
01 Jan 1969
TL;DR: It is postulated that interspecific differences in mortality rates are determined by evolutionarily acceptable levels of adult risk to lower mortality rates of offspring through parental care, adult adaptations of morphology and behavior for foraging, and—most import—the diversity of predators to which a species must adapt.
Abstract: Ricklefs, Robert E. An Analysis of Nesting Mortality in Birds. Smithsonian Contributions to Zoology, 9:1-48. 1969.—This study was initiated to evaluate nesting mortality of birds as a feature of the environment and as a selective force in the evolution of reproductive strategies. Representative nesting-success data from the literature for most groups of birds were transformed into daily mortality rates to eliminate differences among species in the length of the nest cycle. These data are presented by taxonomic groupings and for passerines by geographical region and nest construction and placement. The strength and pattern of various mortality factors are described in detail. Predation, starvation, desertion, hatching failure, and adverse weather are the most prevalent factors, but nestsite competition, brood parasitism, and arthropod infestation may be important in some species. It is demonstrated that the various mortality factors can be identified by characteristic patterns of nesting losses involving differences in mortality rates between the egg and nestling periods and the within-nest component of mortality rates. Among Temperate Zone passerines, field-nesting and marsh-nesting species have the highest mortality rates while those species nesting in trees, especially in cavities, enjoy higher success. Starvation is prevalent in marsh and field species but desertion is more restricted to tree-nesting species. In general, arctic species have lower mortality rates and tropical species higher rates, although there is a similar gradient from arid to humid regions within the tropics. The relative abundance of a species is related directly to its mortality rate in arctic regions, but is not in temperate and tropical regions. Birds of prey generally have low mortality rates although starvation is often a major factor. Nesting losses in seabirds are caused primarily by crowded conditions in colonies and loss of eggs due to inadequate nest construction. Chick deaths come about primarily through their wandering away from parental care which is most common in the semiprecocial Charadriiformes. Precocial shorebirds and water birds enjoy higher egg success than ground-nesting passerines but game birds exhibit similar mortality rates. Little is known of the survival of precocial chicks after hatching except that mortality rates may be initially quite high and decrease with age. The fate of altricial birds after fledging is also poorly documented. It is postulated that interspecific differences in mortality rates are determined by evolutionarily acceptable levels of adult risk to lower mortality rates of offspring through parental care, adult adaptations of morphology and behavior for foraging which result in limitations on nesting adaptations, environmental unpredictability which reduces the effectiveness of adaptations, and—most import—the diversity of predators to which a species must adapt. Official publication date is handstamped in a limited number of initial copies and is recorded in the Institution's annual report, Smithsonian Year. UNITED STATES GOVERNMENT PRINTING OFFICE WASHINGTON : 1969 For sale by the Superintendent of Documents, U.S. Government Printing Office Washington, D.C. 20402 Price 55 cents (paper cover)
Michigan State University1, University of California, Davis2, University of California, Santa Barbara3, Grinnell College4, Florida Institute of Technology5, University of California, San Diego6, Smithsonian Institution7, Cornell University8, Academy of Natural Sciences of Drexel University9, Dartmouth College10, Yale University11, University of Chicago12, University of Missouri13, University of Georgia14, University of British Columbia15
TL;DR: Two major hypotheses for the origin of the latitudinal diversity gradient are reviewed, including the time and area hypothesis and the diversification rate hypothesis, which hold that tropical regions diversify faster due to higher rates of speciation, or due to lower extinction rates.
Abstract: A latitudinal gradient in biodiversity has existed since before the time of the dinosaurs, yet how and why this gradient arose remains unresolved. Here we review two major hypotheses for the origin of the latitudinal diversity gradient. The time and area hypothesis holds that tropical climates are older and historically larger, allowing more opportunity for diversification. This hypothesis is supported by observations that temperate taxa are often younger than, and nested within, tropical taxa, and that diversity is positively correlated with the age and area of geographical regions. The diversification rate hypothesis holds that tropical regions diversify faster due to higher rates of speciation (caused by increased opportunities for the evolution of reproductive isolation, or faster molecular evolution, or the increased importance of biotic interactions), or due to lower extinction rates. There is phylogenetic evidence for higher rates of diversification in tropical clades, and palaeontological data demonstrate higher rates of origination for tropical taxa, but mixed evidence for latitudinal differences in extinction rates. Studies of latitudinal variation in incipient speciation also suggest faster speciation in the tropics. Distinguishing the roles of history, speciation and extinction in the origin of the latitudinal gradient represents a major challenge to future research.
TL;DR: It is argued that individual and adaptive responses to different environments are limited by physiological mechanisms, and studies should integrate behavior and physiology within the environmental and demographic contexts of selection.
Abstract: The rate of reproduction, age at maturity and longevity vary widely among species. Most of this life-history variation falls on a slow-fast continuum, with low reproductive rate, slow development and long life span at one end and the opposite traits at the other end. The absence of alternative combinations of these variables implies constraint on the diversification of life histories, but the nature of this constraint remains elusive. Here, we argue that individual and adaptive responses to different environments are limited by physiological mechanisms. Although energy and materials allocations are important results of physiological tradeoffs, endocrine control mechanisms can produce incompatible physiological states that restrict life histories to a single dominant axis of variation. To approach the problem of life-history variation properly, studies should integrate behavior and physiology within the environmental and demographic contexts of selection.
01 Jan 1993
TL;DR: In this article, the authors explore the large-scale mechanisms that generate and maintain diversity in ecological communities, and emphasize the fact that ecological processes acting quickly on a local scale do not erase the effects of regional and historical events that occur more slowly and less frequently.
Abstract: "Species Diversity in Ecological Communities" looks at biodiversity in its broadest geographical and historical contexts. For many decades, ecologists have tended to study only small areas over short time spans in the belief that diversity is regulated by local ecological interactions. However, to understand fully how communities come to have the diversity they do and to address properly the urgent conservation problems we face, scientists must consider global patterns of species richness and the historical events that shape both regional and local communities. The authors use new theoretical developments, analyses and case studies to explore the large-scale mechanisms that generate and maintain diversity. Case studies of various regions and organisms consider how local and regional processes interact to determine patterns of species richness. The contributors emphasize the fact that ecological processes acting quickly on a local scale do not erase the effects of regional and historical events that occur more slowly and less frequently.
28 Jul 2005
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
TL;DR: This book by a teacher of statistics (as well as a consultant for "experimenters") is a comprehensive study of the philosophical background for the statistical design of experiment.
Abstract: THE DESIGN AND ANALYSIS OF EXPERIMENTS. By Oscar Kempthorne. New York, John Wiley and Sons, Inc., 1952. 631 pp. $8.50. This book by a teacher of statistics (as well as a consultant for \"experimenters\") is a comprehensive study of the philosophical background for the statistical design of experiment. It is necessary to have some facility with algebraic notation and manipulation to be able to use the volume intelligently. The problems are presented from the theoretical point of view, without such practical examples as would be helpful for those not acquainted with mathematics. The mathematical justification for the techniques is given. As a somewhat advanced treatment of the design and analysis of experiments, this volume will be interesting and helpful for many who approach statistics theoretically as well as practically. With emphasis on the \"why,\" and with description given broadly, the author relates the subject matter to the general theory of statistics and to the general problem of experimental inference. MARGARET J. ROBERTSON
TL;DR: It is suggested that the natural selection against large insertion/deletion is so weak that a large amount of variation is maintained in a population.
TL;DR: For the next few weeks the course is going to be exploring a field that’s actually older than classical population genetics, although the approach it’ll be taking to it involves the use of population genetic machinery.
Abstract: So far in this course we have dealt entirely with the evolution of characters that are controlled by simple Mendelian inheritance at a single locus. There are notes on the course website about gametic disequilibrium and how allele frequencies change at two loci simultaneously, but we didn’t discuss them. In every example we’ve considered we’ve imagined that we could understand something about evolution by examining the evolution of a single gene. That’s the domain of classical population genetics. For the next few weeks we’re going to be exploring a field that’s actually older than classical population genetics, although the approach we’ll be taking to it involves the use of population genetic machinery. If you know a little about the history of evolutionary biology, you may know that after the rediscovery of Mendel’s work in 1900 there was a heated debate between the “biometricians” (e.g., Galton and Pearson) and the “Mendelians” (e.g., de Vries, Correns, Bateson, and Morgan). Biometricians asserted that the really important variation in evolution didn’t follow Mendelian rules. Height, weight, skin color, and similar traits seemed to