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January American Naturalist highlights
Date:1/4/2008

rated that ectoparasite blood meal size, and in turn survival, is shaped positively by host nutritive resources and negatively by host immunity. The important point of our study, states Pierre Bize, the lead author, is that although parasites have a poor survival when feeding on hosts in prime conditions, because these hosts can mount a potent immune response, the reverse is not true. Indeed, parasites also have a reduced survival when feeding on hosts in poor conditions and with a low immune response, which points out that immunity is not the only factor accounting for parasite fitness. Alexandre Roulin adds, The appraisal of what factors make a host profitable are vital for our understanding of host-parasite interactions, and in turn to the implement of well-designed parasite control programmes.


"Linking traits to energetics and population dynamics to predict lizard ranges in changing environments"
Lauren B. Buckley (Santa Fe Institute)

Does biology matter when predicting how animals will respond to climate change"

Most predictions of how animals will move in changing climates rely on statistically relating an animals current location to environmental conditions. This approach ignores potentially important aspects of an animals biology including size, physiology, and behavior. Lauren Buckley, an ecologist at the Santa Fe Institute, has developed a bottom-up approach that predicts distributions directly from an animals traits and environmental conditions by modeling the energy use of individuals and populations. Research forthcoming in The American Naturalist applies the model to five populations of a widespread North American lizard, Sceloporus undulatus, to examine whether geographic variation in traits influences range predictions. Buckley finds that lizards from the five populations are suited to live in different areas and are predicted to respond differently to a climate warming of 3C, contrasting the predi
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Contact: Rudy Faust
rfaust@press.uchicago.edu
773-834-0386
University of Chicago Press Journals
Source:Eurekalert

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