Revisiting Soule 1985

In a paper published in Bioscience in 1985, Michael Soule laid out his vision for a new discipline called Conservation Biology to "provide principles and tools for preserving biological diversity". Soule envisioned Conservation Biology as a "crisis discipline" in which "one must act before knowing all the facts", using a "mixture of science and art", … Continue reading Revisiting Soule 1985

Revisiting Peterson et al. 1999

In a paper published in Science in 1999, A. Townsend Peterson, Jorge Soberón and Víctor Sánchez-Cordero presented strong evidence for niche conservatism in 37 sister taxon pairs of mammals, birds and butterflies on either side of the Isthmus of Tehuantepec in Mexico. These results suggested that speciation initally took place along geographic dimensions and ecological … Continue reading Revisiting Peterson et al. 1999

Revisiting Gavrilets 2000

In the late 1990s, mounting experimental evidence for rapid evolution of traits related to fertilisation seemed paradoxical given that matching of male and female traits is required for successful reproduction In a paper published in Nature in 2000, Sergey Gavrilets showed, through a simple mode, that continual change is expected in such traits whenever females … Continue reading Revisiting Gavrilets 2000

Revisiting Stachowicz et al. 1999

In a paper published in Science in 1999, Jay Stachowicz, Robert Whitlach and Richard Osman showed, using experimental communities of sessile marine invertebrates that invasion success was lower in more species rich communities. The like reason for this pattern was that space, which was the limiting resource in the system, was more fully and efficiently … Continue reading Revisiting Stachowicz et al. 1999

Revisiting Davies & Brooke 1988

In a paper published in Animal Behaviour in 1988, Nick Davies and Michael Brooke unraveled, using a mix of natural history observation and clever experiments, the nature of the interaction between the brood-parasitic common cuckoo and its host the reed warbler. Their experiments showed that many facets of the cuckoo's behaviour are likely to have … Continue reading Revisiting Davies & Brooke 1988

Revisiting Felsenstein 1985

In a paper published in The American Naturalist in 1985, Joseph Felsenstein proposed a new method – phylogenetically independent contrasts – that allowed the incorporation of phylogenetic information into comparative analyses. Using Felsenstein’s method, biologists could overcome the statistical problem of non-independence of species due to shared ancestry. Thirty-one years after the paper was published, … Continue reading Revisiting Felsenstein 1985

Revisiting Gurevitch et al. 1992

In a paper published in The American Naturalist in 1992, Jessica Gurevitch, Laura Morrow, Alison Wallace and Joseph Walsh presented the results of what was, arguably, the first meta-analysis in ecology, of field competition experiments published in six leading ecology journals over a 10-year period. Gurevitch and colleagues found that, overall, competition had a strong … Continue reading Revisiting Gurevitch et al. 1992

Revisiting Hurlbert 1984

In a paper published in Ecological Monographs in 1984, Stuart Hurlbert examined 176 experimental studies in ecology and found that 27% suffered from 'pseudoreplication' - the use of statistical statistical testing in situations in which treatments were not replicated or the replicates were not independent. When only studies that used inferential statistics were considered, the … Continue reading Revisiting Hurlbert 1984