Arne Ø. Mooers

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Continuously varying traits such as body size or gene expression level evolve during the history of species or gene lineages. To test hypotheses about the evolution of such traits, the maximum likelihood (ML) method is often used. Here we introduce CoMET (Continuous-character Model Evaluation and Testing), which is module for Mesquite that automates(More)
Understanding the evolution of specialization in host plant use by pollinators is often complicated by variability in the ecological context of specialization. Flowering communities offer their pollinators varying numbers and proportions of floral resources, and the uniformity observed in these floral resources is, to some degree, due to shared ancestry.(More)
BACKGROUND Categories of imperilment like the global IUCN Red List have been transformed to probabilities of extinction and used to rank species by the amount of imperiled evolutionary history they represent (e.g. by the Edge of Existence programme). We investigate the stability of such lists when ranks are converted to probabilities of extinction under(More)
The EDGE (evolutionarily distinct and globally endangered) conservation program ( uses a composite measure of threat and phylogenetic isolation to rank species for conservation attention. Using primates as a test case, we examined how species that rank highly with this metric represent the collective from which they are drawn.(More)
The long-term persistence of forest-dwelling caribou (Rangifer tarandus caribou) will probably be determined by management and conservation decisions. Understanding the evolutionary relationships between modern caribou herds, and how these relationships have changed through time will provide key information for the design of appropriate management(More)
The value of a continuous character evolving on a phylogenetic tree is commonly modelled as the location of a particle moving under one-dimensional Brownian motion with constant rate. The Brownian motion model is best suited to characters evolving under neutral drift or tracking an optimum that drifts neutrally. We present a generalization of the Brownian(More)
Anthropogenic activities have increased the rate of biological extinction many-fold. Recent empirical studies suggest that projected extinction may lead to extensive loss to the Tree of Life, much more than if extinction were random. One suggested cause is that extinction risk is heritable (phylogenetically patterned), such that entire higher groups will be(More)
If predictions for species extinctions hold, then the 'tree of life' today may be quite different to that in (say) 100 years. We describe a technique to quantify how much each species is likely to contribute to future biodiversity, as measured by its expected contribution to phylogenetic diversity. Our approach considers all possible scenarios for the set(More)
BACKGROUND Despite much empirical attention, tests for indirect benefits of mate choice have rarely considered the major components of sexual and nonsexual offspring fitness relevant to a population. Here we use a novel experimental design to test for the existence of any indirect benefits in a laboratory adapted population of D. melanogaster. Our(More)
Conservation planning needs to account for limited resources when choosing those species on which to focus attention and resources. Currently, funding is biased to small sections of the tree of life, such as raptors and carnivores. One new approach for increasing the diversity of species under consideration considers how many close relatives a species has(More)