Category Archives: Molecular Ecology, the journal

Mating systems

In a new paper, published online in Molecular Ecology, Pannell (2015) reviews the literature on the evolution of mating systems and dispersal in colonizing species as component of a special issue called Invasion Genetics: The Baker and Stebbins Legacy.  This issue is … Continue reading

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Posted in adaptation, Coevolution, conferences, evolution, Molecular Ecology, the journal, selection | Tagged , , , , , | 1 Comment

Beauty is in the eyes of the beholder

Many animals use visual signals to scope out potential mates. In a new paper in Molecular Ecology, Sandkam et al. (2015) demonstrate that the variation underlying preference in female guppies could be explained by simple changes in expression and coding of … Continue reading

Posted in Coevolution, evolution, Molecular Ecology, the journal, natural history, population genetics, speciation, Uncategorized | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Harry Smith, the founder of Molecular Ecology, has died

We’ve received word that Harry Smith, the founder of Molecular Ecology, passed away yesterday. Smith had a prolific and well-regarded career studying the molecular basis of plants’ responses to their environments. In particular, he helped to demonstrate how plants perceive … Continue reading

Posted in community, Molecular Ecology, the journal, science publishing | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Estimating the ticks and tocks of molecular clocks

M Like many undergraduate students, I learned about the linear, universal molecular clock: the homogeneous rate of nucleotide change over time. When I sat down to actually do analyses of molecular data, I was confounded by the array of options to treat … Continue reading

Posted in evolution, Molecular Ecology, the journal, mutation, software | Tagged | Leave a comment

A molecular how-to for hibernating this winter

As the academic semester ends, I see the tell-tale signs of the upcoming holiday hibernation. The weary eyes of teaching assistants peeking over piles of final exams. Students who may have mentally been on break before finals even started. A little … Continue reading

Posted in association genetics, Molecular Ecology, the journal, quantitative genetics, Uncategorized | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

C.L. Gloger’s favorite owl

Biologists love clines. We’ve been mentally masticating on clines for decades. Clines in body size. Clines in color. Clines in heart size! Clines that go in circles! Recognizing clinal patterns in phenotypes or genotypes is fun, but discovering the mechanisms behind … Continue reading

Posted in adaptation, Molecular Ecology, the journal, population genetics | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Exotic gene flow surveillance

Exotic forest plantations often cover large areas and, as such, may contribute female gametes, male gametes and/or zygotes to native stands. In seed plants, these three components of exotic gene flow have not been distinguished, though they will have different … Continue reading

Posted in conservation, Molecular Ecology, the journal, population genetics, Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Isolation by environment explains why the grass isn’t always greener

Ever since Sewall Wright introduced isolation by distance in 1943, the interplay between genetic differentiation and geographic distance has been a foundational, sometimes frustrating, aspect of population genetics studies. But distance isn’t just distance. The walk to my car isn’t any longer when … Continue reading

Posted in methods, Molecular Ecology, the journal, population genetics | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

All in the family: hierarchical social and genetic structure in the Old World monkey Theropithecus gelada

Complex, multi-level animal societies have evolved convergently across many taxa but we know little about the mechanisms behind their formation and their associated fitness benefits. In their Molecular Ecology paper published online last week, Snyder-Mackler et al. addressed these questions … Continue reading

Posted in community, Molecular Ecology, the journal, primates, societal structure | 2 Comments

The latest gadget for the molecular ecologist’s toolkit

Designing a sampling scheme to collect an organism of interest for a population genetic/genomic study can be fraught with difficulty. How best to sample? Randomly? Or, along a grid? How many individuals to sample? Thirty? Or, perhaps, the sample size … Continue reading

Posted in genomics, methods, Molecular Ecology, the journal, natural history, pedigree, population genetics, software | 2 Comments