Revisiting Levin 1998

In 1998, in an invited paper in the journal Ecosystems, Simon Levin made a case for the value of viewing ecosystems as complex adaptive systems, in particular to understand the relative roles of the environment and self-organisation in determining system properties. At the end of the paper, Levin proposed six questions that, according to him, … Continue reading Revisiting Levin 1998


Revisiting Weir et al. 2002

In a study published in Science in 2002, Alex Weir, Jackie Chappell and Alex Kacelnik demonstrated that New Caledonian crows can bend wires into the shape of hooks to access food. This study was probably the first report of an animal purposefully modifying an object to use as a tool. Fifteen years after the paper … Continue reading Revisiting Weir et al. 2002

Revisiting Schluter and McPhail 1992

In 1992, Dolph Schluter and Don McPhail published a paper in The American Naturalist in which they provide evidence for ecological character displacement among species of stickleback fish that live in the lakes of coastal British Columbia. In the paper, Schluter and McPhail also provide a conceptual framework in the form of six criteria that need … Continue reading Revisiting Schluter and McPhail 1992

Revisiting Milinski and Bakker 1990

In 1990, Manfred Milinski and Theo Bakker published a paper in Nature providing experimental evidence in support of the Hamilton-Zuk hypothesis. Milinski and Bakker showed, through experiments on three-spined stickleback, that: 1. the intensity of a male's red color is correlated with his physical condition; 2. females choose males based on red color intensity; 3. … Continue reading Revisiting Milinski and Bakker 1990

Revisiting Loreau and Hector 2001

In a 2001 paper in Nature, Michel Loreau and Andy Hector described a new method, based on the Price equation, to partition  the "selection effect" and the "complementarity effect" of biodiversity  on ecosystem function, and demonstrated its use on data from the BIODEPTH  experiments (BIODiversity and Ecological Processes in Terrestrial Herbaceous ecosystems: experimental manipulations of … Continue reading Revisiting Loreau and Hector 2001