Esta sección incluye una lista de los últimos artículos científicos del IPNA publicados en revistas incluidas en el Science Citation Index (SCI).
En DIGITAL.CSIC, repositorio institucional del CSIC, pueden encontrar el listado completo de artículos científicos desde 1962, así como otras colecciones de interés como congresos, tesis, libros, material divulgativo, etc. del centro. El objetivo de DIGITAL.CSIC es organizar, preservar y difundir en acceso abierto los resultados de nuestra investigación.
En el repositorio institucional del CSIC, pueden encontrar el listado completo de artículos científicos, así como otras colecciones de interés como congresos, tesis, libros, material divulgativo, etc.
Análisis de la Producción Científica del IPNA 2014-2019: análisis bibliométrico realizado a partir de datos recogidos en Scopus y Web of Science.
Could climate change benefit invasive snakes? Modelling the potential distribution of the California Kingsnake in the Canary Islands
The interaction between climate change and biological invasions is a global conservation challenge with major consequences for invasive species management. However, our understanding of this interaction has substantial knowledge gaps; this is particularly relevant for invasive snakes on islands because they can be a serious threat to island ecosystems. Here we evaluated the potential influence of climate change on the distribution of invasive snakes on islands, using the invasion of the California kingsnake (Lampropeltis californiae) in Gran Canaria. We analysed the potential distribution of L. californiae under current and future climatic conditions in the Canary Islands, with the underlying hypothesis that the archipelago might be suitable for the species under these climate scenarios. Our results indicate that the Canary Islands are currently highly suitable for the invasive snake, with increased suitability under the climate change scenarios tested here. This study supports the idea that invasive reptiles represent a substantial threat to near-tropical regions, and builds on previous studies suggesting that the menace of invasive reptiles may persist or even be exacerbated by climate change. We suggest future research should continue to fill the knowledge gap regarding invasive reptiles, in particular snakes, to clarify their potential future impacts on global biodiversity.
Piquet, Julien C. ; Warren, Dan L.; Saavedra Bolaños, Jorge Fernando; Sánchez Rivero, José Miguel; Gallo-Barneto, Ramón; Cabrera-Pérez, Miguel Ángel; Fisher, Robert N.; Fisher, Sam R.; Rochester, Carlton J.; Hinds, Brian; Nogales, Manuel ; López-Darias, Marta
K-Ar geochronology and trace-element geochemistry of 2M1 illite from upper Paleozoic shale of SW Laurentia – Insights into sediment origin and drainage pathways in the Anadarko Basin, USA
The Anadarko Basin of Oklahoma represents a major Paleozoic depocenter that existed along the rifted margins of southwestern Laurentia. In its infancy it accumulated a thick series of Cambrian through Mississippian detritus while further subsidence caused by inversion of the Cambrian Southern Oklahoma Aulacogen resulted in voluminous Pennsylvanian to Permian sediment. This contribution reports new data on K-Ar ages and trace-element geochemistry of detrital illite from middle and upper Pennsylvanian shale used to reconstruct sediment origins at the peak period of subsidence of the Anadarko Basin. X-ray diffraction was used to unveil mineral compositions and abundances of illite polytypes in two size fractions of separated illite (˂1 and 2-1 μm). K-Ar isotopic analyses were completed for both fine fractions, while the laser ablation inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry was done for the latter. All illite separates consisted of mixtures of authigenic (1Md) and detrital (2M1) illite. The Illite Age Analyses showed that the detrital age of Desmoinesian (Moscovian) shale is the late Ediacaran (584 Ma), while the age of Missourian (Kasimovian) shale is the middle Cambrian (512.5 Ma). Trace-element abundances of all analyzed illite, irrespectively of stratigraphic age, are consistent with those of mica from metamorphic rocks. Based on illite detrital age and geochemistry it was inferred that Desmoinesian (Moscovian) shale represents a mixture of Neoproterozoic and Cambrian detritus sourced locally, whereas Missourian (Kasimovian) shale records a provenance shift toward more distal easterly sources from the Ouachita-(Marathon) foreland. This study has proposed a sediment source transition between the middle and upper Pennsylvanian that likely reflected major changes in the basin paleogeography and progressive development of the east-west (transcontinental) fluvial systems.
Šegvić, Branimir; Zanoni, Giovanni; Bozkaya, Ömer; Sweet, Dustin; Barnes, Melanie; Boulesteix, Thomas ; Solé, Jesús
Changes in the structure of seed dispersal networks when including interaction outcomes from both plant and animal perspectives
Interaction frequency is the most common currency in quantitative ecological networks, although interaction quality can also affect benefits provided by mutualisms. Here, we evaluate if interaction quality can modify network topology, species' role and whether such changes affect community vulnerability to species loss. We use a well-examined study system (bird–lizard and fleshy-fruited plants in the ‘thermophilous' woodland of the Canary Islands) to compare network and species-level metrics from a network based on fruit consumption rates (interaction frequency, IF), against networks reflecting functional outcomes: a seed dispersal effectiveness network (SDE) quantifying recruitment, and a fruit resource provisioning network (FRP), accounting for the nutrient supply of fruits. Nestedness decreased in the FRP and the SDE networks, due to the lack of association between fruit consumption rates and 1) nutrient content and; 2) recruitment at the seed deposition sites, respectively. The FRP network showed lower niche overlap due to resource use complementarity among frugivores. Interaction evenness was lower in the SDE network, in response to a higher dominance of lizards in the recruitment of heliophilous species. Such changes, however, did not result in enhanced vulnerability against extinctions. At the plant species level, strength changed in the FRP network in frequently consumed or highly nutritious species. The number of effective partners decreased for species whose seeds were deposited in unsuitable places for recruitment. In frugivores, strength was consistent across networks (SDE vs IF), showing that consumption rates outweighed differences in dispersal quality. In the case of lizards, the increased importance of nutrient-rich species resulted in a higher number of effective partners.
Our work shows that although frequency strongly impacts interaction effects, accounting for quality improves our inferences about interaction assembly and species role. Thus, future studies including interaction outcomes from both partners' perspectives will provide valuable insights about the net effects of mutualistic interactions.
González-Castro, Aaron; Morán-López, Teresa; Nogales, Manuel; Traveset, Anna
The Chemistry of Reactive Oxygen Species (ROS) Revisited: Outlining Their Role in Biological Macromolecules (DNA, Lipids and Proteins) and Induced Pathologies
Living species are continuously subjected to all extrinsic forms of reactive oxidants and others that are produced endogenously. There is extensive literature on the generation and effects of reactive oxygen species (ROS) in biological processes, both in terms of alteration and their role in cellular signaling and regulatory pathways. Cells produce ROS as a controlled physiological process, but increasing ROS becomes pathological and leads to oxidative stress and disease. The induction of oxidative stress is an imbalance between the production of radical species and the antioxidant defense systems, which can cause damage to cellular biomolecules, including lipids, proteins and DNA. Cellular and biochemical experiments have been complemented in various ways to explain the biological chemistry of ROS oxidants. However, it is often unclear how this translates into chemical reactions involving redox changes. This review addresses this question and includes a robust mechanistic explanation of the chemical reactions of ROS and oxidative stress.
Andrés Juan, Celia; Pérez de Lastra, José Manuel; Plou Gasca, Francisco José; Pérez-Lebeña, Euardo
Biodiversity monitoring using environmental DNA
Monitoring biodiversity is essential to protect, preserve and restore ecosystems, particularly in the context of current challenges such as climate change, habitat destruction and globalization (Baird & Hajibabaei, 2012). Biomonitoring is needed for developing biotic indices for assessing ecological status, measuring impacts of anthropogenic activities in natural ecosystems, evaluating biodiversity loss, surveying nonindigenous species, conservation, and identifying cryptic species (Balvanera et al., 2006; Fišer et al., 2018). Thus, spatially and temporally structured biomonitoring activities provide a powerful tool for the implementation of regional, national and international regulations, directives and policies for nature conservation. However substantial impediments exist including access to remote locations, limited specialist taxonomic knowledge, cost, slow pace of human-driven data analyses, and typically low sensitivity for detection of rare and elusive species (Zinger et al., 2020). These drawbacks are often translated into expensive monitoring activities with limited spatial, temporal and taxonomic coverage. In this context, new approaches for biomonitoring are being explored, among which advanced DNA-based technologies are emerging (Kissling et al., 2018). The field of biodiversity monitoring through the analysis of the pool of DNA isolated from environmental samples, referred to as environmental DNA or eDNA (Pawlowski et al., 2020; Taberlet et al., 2012), is rapidly growing. This growth is being driven through improved approaches for sampling, data generation and analyses, and with recent advances on how eDNA should be interpreted for biodiversity assessments (Bohmann et al., 2014). The success of eDNA-based biomonitoring is reflected in exponential growth of publications within this area and increasing submissions to Molecular Ecology Resources in particular (Figure 1). Molecular Ecology Resources aims to publish high quality eDNA studies that serve as broad resources, including innovative methodologies for DNA sampling, enhanced laboratory protocols for data generation, or new computer programs and statistical advances for data analyses. Thus, the aim of this editorial is to contribute to producing good quality DNA data-derived essential biodiversity variables (EBVs) (Kissling et al., 2018) by providing guidance to the community submitting articles on the subject. For that purpose, we have summarized best practices established in published literature related to the different phases involved in the process, namely sampling, laboratory work, bioinformatic analyses and data interpretation (Figure 2).
Rodríguez-Ezpeleta, Naiara; Zinger, Lucie; Kinziger, Andrew; Bik, Holly M.; Bonin, Aurélie; Coissac, Eric; Emerson, Brent C. ; Martins Lopes, Carla; Pelletier, Tara A.; Taberlet, Pierre; Narum, Shawn
FLTX2: A Novel Tamoxifen Derivative Endowed with Antiestrogenic, Fluorescent, and Photosensitizer Properties
Tamoxifen is the most widely used selective modulator of estrogen receptors (SERM) and the first strategy as coadjuvant therapy for the treatment of estrogen-receptor (ER) positive breast cancer worldwide. In spite of such success, tamoxifen is not devoid of undesirable effects, the most life-threatening reported so far affecting uterine tissues. Indeed, tamoxifen treatment is discouraged in women under risk of uterine cancers. Recent molecular design efforts have endeavoured the development of tamoxifen derivatives with antiestrogen properties but lacking agonistic uterine tropism. One of this is FLTX2, formed by the covalent binding of tamoxifen as ER binding core, 7-nitrobenzofurazan (NBD) as the florescent dye, and Rose Bengal (RB) as source for reactive oxygen species. Our analyses demonstrate (1) FLTX2 is endowed with similar antiestrogen potency as tamoxifen and its predecessor FLTX1, (2) shows a strong absorption in the blue spectral range, associated to the NBD moiety, which efficiently transfers the excitation energy to RB through intramolecular FRET mechanism, (3) generates superoxide anions in a concentration- and irradiation time-dependent process, and (4) Induces concentration- and time-dependent MCF7 apoptotic cell death. These properties make FLTX2 a very promising candidate to lead a novel generation of SERMs with the endogenous capacity to promote breast tumour cell death in situ by photosensitization.
Díaz, Mario; Lobo, Fernando; Hernández, Dácil; Amesty, Ángel; Valdés-Baizabal, Catalina; Canerina-Amaro, Ana; Mesa-Herrera, Fátima; Soler, Kevin; Boto, Alicia; Marín, Raquel; Estévez-Braun, Ana; Lahoz, Fernando
Genomic variation, population history and within-archipelago adaptation between island bird populations
Oceanic island archipelagos provide excellent models to understand evolutionary processes. Colonization events and gene flow can interact with selection to shape genetic variation at different spatial scales. Landscape-scale variation in biotic and abiotic factors may drive fine-scale selection within islands, while long-term evolutionary processes may drive divergence between distantly related populations. Here, we examine patterns of population history and selection between recently diverged populations of the Berthelot's pipit (Anthus berthelotii), a passerine endemic to three North Atlantic archipelagos. First, we use demographic trees and f3 statistics to show that genome-wide divergence across the species range is largely shaped by colonization and bottlenecks, with evidence of very weak gene flow between populations. Then, using a genome scan approach, we identify signatures of divergent selection within archipelagos at single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) in genes potentially associated with craniofacial development and DNA repair. We did not detect within-archipelago selection at the same SNPs as were detected previously at broader spatial scales between archipelagos, but did identify signatures of selection at loci associated with similar biological functions. These findings suggest that similar ecological factors may repeatedly drive selection between recently separated populations, as well as at broad spatial scales across varied landscapes.
Martín, Clauida A.; Armstrong, Claire; Illera, Juan Carlos ; Emerson, Brent C. ; Richardson, David S.; Spurgin, Lewis G.
Bioactive Metabolites from the Endophytic Fungus Aspergillus sp. SPH2
In the current study, an ethyl acetate extract from the endophytic fungus Aspergillus sp. SPH2 isolated from the stem parts of the endemic plant Bethencourtia palmensis was screened for its biocontrol properties against plant pathogens (Fusarium moniliforme, Alternaria alternata, and Botrytis cinerea), insect pests (Spodoptera littoralis, Myzus persicae, Rhopalosiphum padi), plant parasites (Meloidogyne javanica), and ticks (Hyalomma lusitanicum). SPH2 gave extracts with strong fungicidal and ixodicidal effects at different fermentation times. The bioguided isolation of these extracts gave compounds 1–3. Mellein (1) showed strong ixodicidal effects and was also fungicidal. This is the first report on the ixodicidal effects of 1. Neoaspergillic acid (2) showed potent antifungal effects. Compound 2 appeared during the exponential phase of the fungal growth while neohydroxyaspergillic acid (3) appeared during the stationary phase, suggesting that 2 is the biosynthetic precursor of 3. The mycotoxin ochratoxin A was not detected under the fermentation conditions used in this work. Therefore, SPH2 could be a potential biotechnological tool for the production of ixodicidal extracts rich in mellein.
Morales-Sánchez, Viridiana; Díaz, Carmen E.; Trujillo, Elena; Olmeda, Sonia A.; Valcarcel, Félix; Muñoz, Rubén; Andrés, María Fe; González-Coloma, Azucena
Long‐term cloud forest response to climate warming revealed by insect speciation history
Montane cloud forests are areas of high endemism, and are one of the more vulnerable terrestrial ecosystems to climate change. Thus, understanding how they both contribute to the generation of biodiversity, and will respond to ongoing climate change, are important and related challenges. The widely accepted model for montane cloud forest dynamics involves upslope forcing of their range limits with global climate warming. However, limited climate data provides some support for an alternative model, where range limits are forced downslope with climate warming. Testing between these two models is challenging, due to the inherent limitations of climate and pollen records. We overcome this with an alternative source of historical information, testing between competing model predictions using genomic data and demographic analyses for a species of beetle tightly associated to an oceanic island cloud forest. Results unequivocally support the alternative model: populations that were isolated at higher elevation peaks during the Last Glacial Maximum are now in contact and hybridizing at lower elevations. Our results suggest that genomic data are a rich source of information to further understand how montane cloud forest biodiversity originates, and how it is likely to be impacted by ongoing climate change.
Salces-Castellano, Antonia; Stankowski, Sean; Arribas, Paula; Patiño, Jairo; Karger, Dirk N.; Butlin, Roger; Emerson, Brent C.
Anthropogenic Perturbations to the Atmospheric Molybdenum Cycle
Molybdenum (Mo) is a key cofactor in enzymes used for nitrogen (N) fixation and nitrate reduction, and the low availability of Mo can constrain N inputs, affecting ecosystem productivity. Natural atmospheric Mo aerosolization and deposition from sources such as desert dust, sea‐salt spray, and volcanoes can affect ecosystem function across long timescales, but anthropogenic activities such as combustion, motor vehicles, and agricultural dust have accelerated the natural Mo cycle. Here we combined a synthesis of global atmospheric concentration observations and modeling to identify and estimate anthropogenic sources of atmospheric Mo. To project the impact of atmospheric Mo on terrestrial ecosystems, we synthesized soil Mo data and estimated the global distribution of soil Mo using two approaches to calculate turnover times. We estimated global emissions of atmospheric Mo in aerosols (<10 μm in diameter) to be 23 Gg Mo yr‐1, with 40 to 75% from anthropogenic sources. We approximated that for the top meter of soil, Mo turnover times range between 1,000 to 1,000,000 years. In some industrialized regions, anthropogenic inputs have enhanced Mo deposition 100‐fold, lowering the soil Mo turnover time considerably. Our synthesis of global observational data, modeling, and a mass balance comparison with riverine Mo exports suggest that anthropogenic activity has greatly accelerated the Mo cycle, with potential to influence N‐limited ecosystems.
Wong, Michelle Y.; Rathod, Sagar D.; Marino, Roxanne; Li, Longlei; Howarth, Robert W.; Alastuey, Andres; Alaimo, Maria Grazia; Barraza, Francisco; Carneiro, Manuel Castro; Chellam, Shankararaman; Chen Yu-Cheng; Cohen, David D.; Connelly, David; Dongarra, Gaetano; Gomez, Dario; Hand, Jenny; Harrison, R.M.; Hopke, Philip K.; Hueglin, Christoph; Kuang, Yuan-wen; Lambert, Fabrice; Liang, James; Losno, Remi; Maenhaut, Willy; Milando, Chad; Couto Monteiro, Maria Inês; Morera-Gómez, Yasser; Querol, Xavier; Rodríguez, Sergio; Smichowski, Patricia; Varrica, Daniela; Xiao, Yi-hua; Xu, Yangjunjie; Mahowald, Natalie M.
Validated removal of nuclear pseudogenes and sequencing artefacts from mitochondrial metabarcode data
Metabarcoding of Metazoa using mitochondrial genes may be confounded by both the accumulation of PCR and sequencing artefacts and the co-amplification of nuclear mitochondrial pseudogenes (NUMTs). The application of read abundance thresholds and denoising methods is efficient in reducing noise accompanying authentic mitochondrial amplicon sequence variants (ASVs). However, these procedures do not fully account for the complex nature of concomitant sequences and the highly variable DNA contribution of specimens in a metabarcoding sample. We propose, as a complement to denoising, the metabarcoding Multidimensional Abundance Threshold Evaluation (metaMATE) framework, a novel approach that allows comprehensive examination of multiple dimensions of abundance filtering and the evaluation of the prevalence of unwanted concomitant sequences in denoised metabarcoding datasets. metaMATE requires a denoised set of ASVs as input, and designates a subset of ASVs as being either authentic (mitochondrial DNA haplotypes) or nonauthentic ASVs (NUMTs and erroneous sequences) by comparison to external reference data and by analysing nucleotide substitution patterns. metaMATE (i) facilitates the application of read abundance filtering strategies, which are structured with regard to sequence library and phylogeny and applied for a range of increasing abundance threshold values, and (ii) evaluates their performance by quantifying the prevalence of nonauthentic ASVs and the collateral effects on the removal of authentic ASVs. The output from metaMATE facilitates decision-making about required filtering stringency and can be used to improve the reliability of intraspecific genetic information derived from metabarcode data. The framework is implemented in the metaMATE software (available at https://github.com/tjcreedy/metamate).
Andújar, Carmelo; Creedy, Thomas J.; Arribas, Paula; López, Heriberto; Salces-Castellano, Antonia; Pérez‐Delgado, Antonio José; Vogler, Alfried P.; Emerson, Brent C.
Exploring the role of life history traits and introduction effort in understanding invasion success in mammals: a case study of Barbary ground squirrels
Invasive species–species that have successfully overcome the barriers of transport, introduction, establishment, and spread—are a risk to biodiversity and ecosystem function. Introduction effort is one of the main factors underlying invasion success, but life history traits are also important as they influence population growth. In this contribution, we first investigated life history traits of the Barbary ground squirrel, Atlantoxerus getulus, a species with a very low introduction effort. We then studied if their invasion success was due to a very fast life history profile by comparing their life history traits to those of other successful invasive mammals. Next, we examined whether the number of founders and/or a fast life history influences the invasion success of squirrels. Barbary ground squirrels were on the fast end of the “fast-slow continuum”, but their life history was not the only contributing factor to their invasion success, as the life history profile is comparable to other invasive species that do not have such a low introduction effort. We also found that neither life history traits nor the number of founders explained the invasion success of introduced squirrels in general. These results contradict the concept that introduction effort is the main factor explaining invasion success, especially in squirrels. Instead, we argue that invasion success can be influenced by multiple aspects of the new habitat or the biology of the introduced species.
van der Marel, Annemarie; Waterman, Jane M.; López-Darias, Marta
Time-Scales of Inter-eruptive Volcano Uplift Signals: Three Sisters Volcanic center, Oregon (USA)
A classical inflation-eruption-deflation cycle of a volcano is useful to conceptualize the time-evolving deformation of volcanic systems. Such a model predicts accelerated uplift during pre-eruptive periods, followed by subsidence during the co-eruptive stage. Some volcanoes show puzzling persistent uplift signals with minor or no other geophysical or geochemical variations, which are difficult to interpret. Such temporal behaviors are usually observed in large calderas (e.g., Yellowstone, Long Valley, Campi Flegrei, Rabaul), but less commonly for stratovolcanoes. Volcano deformation needs to be better understood during inter-eruptive stages, to assess its value as a tool for forecasting eruptions and to understand the processes governing the unrest behavior. Here, we analyze inter-eruptive uplift signals at Three Sisters, a complex stratovolcano in Oregon (United States), which in recent decades shows persistent inter-eruptive uplift signals without associated eruptive activity. Using a Bayesian inversion method, we re-assessed the source characteristics (magmatic system geometry and location) and its uncertainties. Furthermore, we evaluate the most recent evolution of the surface deformation signals combining both GPS and InSAR data through a new non-subjective linear regularization inversion procedure to estimate the 26 years-long time-series. Our results constrain the onset of the Three Sisters volcano inflation to be between October 1998 and August 1999. In the absence of new magmatic inputs, we estimate a continuous uplift signal, at diminishing but detectable rates, to last for few decades. The observed uplift decay observed at Three Sisters is consistent with a viscoelastic response of the crust, with viscosity of ∼1018 Pa s around a magmatic source with a pressure change which increases in finite time to a constant value. Finally, we compare Three Sisters volcano time series with historical uplift at different volcanic systems. Proper modeling of scaled inflation time series indicates a unique and well-defined exponential decay in temporal behavior. Such evidence supports that this common temporal evolution of uplift rates could be a potential indicator of a rather reduced set of physical processes behind inter-eruptive uplift signals.
Rodríguez-Molina, Sara; González, Pablo J.; Charco, María; Negredo, Ana M.; Schmidt, David A.
ENMTools 1.0: an R package for comparative ecological biogeography
The ENMTools software package was introduced in 2008 as a platform for making measurements on environmental niche models (ENMs, frequently referred to as species distribution models or SDMs), and for using those measurements in the context of newly developed Monte Carlo tests to evaluate hypotheses regarding niche evolution. Additional functionality was later added for model selection and simulation from ENMs, and the software package has been quite widely used. ENMTools was initially implemented as a Perl script, which was also compiled into an executable file for various platforms. However, the package had a number of significant limitations; it was only designed to fit models using Maxent, it relied on a specific Perl distribution to function, and its internal structure made it difficult to maintain and expand. Subsequently, the R programming language became the platform of choice for most ENM studies, making ENMTools less usable for many practitioners. Here we introduce a new R version of ENMTools that implements much of the functionality of its predecessor as well as numerous additions that simplify the construction, comparison and evaluation of niche models. These additions include new metrics for model fit, methods of measuring ENM overlap, and methods for testing evolutionary hypotheses. The new version of ENMTools is also designed to work within the expanding universe of R tools for ecological biogeography, and as such includes greatly simplified interfaces for analyses from several other R packages.
Warren, Dan L.; Matzke, Nicholas J.; Cardillo, Marcel; Baumgartner, John B.; Beaumont, Linda J.; Turelli, Michael; Glor, Richard E.; Huron, Nicholas A.; Simões, Marianna; Iglesias, Teresa L.; Piquet, Julien C.; Dinnage, Russell
Are Computational Methods Useful for Structure Elucidation of Large and Flexible Molecules? Belizentrin as a Case Study
Quantum mechanical NMR methods are progressively becoming decisive in structure elucidation. However, problems arise using low-level calculations for complex molecules, whereas methods using higher levels of theory are not practical for large molecules. This report outlines a synergistic effort employing computationally inexpensive quantum mechanical NMR calculations with conformer selection incorporating 3JHH values as a way to solve the structure of large, complex, and highly flexible molecules using readily available computational resources with belizentrin as a case study.
Hernández Daranas, Antonio; Sarotti, Ariel M.
The role of the brown bear Ursus arctos as a legitimate megafaunal seed disperser
Megafaunal frugivores can consume large amounts of fruits whose seeds may be dispersed over long distances, thus, affecting plant regeneration processes and ecosystem functioning. We investigated the role of brown bears (Ursus arctos) as legitimate megafaunal seed dispersers. We assessed the quantity component of seed dispersal by brown bears across its entire distribution based on information about both the relative frequency of occurrence and species composition of fleshy fruits in the diet of brown bears extracted from the literature. We assessed the quality component of seed dispersal based on germination experiments for 11 fleshy-fruited plant species common in temperate and boreal regions and frequently eaten by brown bears. Across its distribution, fleshy fruits, on average, represented 24% of the bear food items and 26% of the total volume consumed. Brown bears consumed seeds from at least 101 fleshy-fruited plant species belonging to 24 families and 42 genera, of which Rubus (Rosaceae) and Vaccinium (Ericaceae) were most commonly eaten. Brown bears inhabiting Mediterranean forests relied the most on fleshy fruits and consumed the largest number of species per study area. Seeds ingested by bears germinated at higher percentages than those from whole fruits, and at similar percentages than manually depulped seeds. We conclude that brown bears are legitimate seed dispersers as they consume large quantities of seeds that remain viable after gut passage. The decline of these megafaunal frugivores may compromise seed dispersal services and plant regeneration processes.
García-Rodríguez, Alberto; Albrecht; Jörg, Szczutkowska, Sylwia; Valido, Alfredo; Farwing, Nina; Selva, Nuria