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Monday, April 9 • 3:45pm - 4:00pm
SYMPOSIA-04: Inter-population Variation of Dispersal Related Traits in a Neotropical Forest Bird: A Chance for Biodiversity Persistence in Fragmented Landscapes?

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AUTHORS: Cintia Cornelius*, Universidade Federal do Amazonas; Marcelo Awade, Universidade de São Paulo; Carlos Candia-Gallardo, Universidade de São Paulo; Mariane Biz, Universidade de São Paulo; Kathryn E. Sieving, University of Florida; Jean Paul Metzger, Universidade de São Paulo.

ABSTRACT: Species-specific fixed traits are often assumed in ecology and conservation research ignoring intraspecific or even interpopulation variation. Dispersal is a heritable trait that develops by interactions between landscape and behavioral processes, and thus interpopulation variation should be frequently observed. In this talk I will address how changes in landscapes configuration lead to inter population variation in traits that are related to dispersal. We conducted translocation-radio-tracking experiments and novel-environment tests to assess weather movement, exploratory behavior, and dispersal success differ among individuals from fragmented and continuous forest populations. As model system we used a tropical rainforest bird (Pyriglena leucoptera, Thamnophillidae), that is an understory army-ant follower of the Atlantic Forest in north- and south-eastern Brazil. We based our predictions on the hypothesis of non-optimal movement in human-modified landscapes that states that individuals that evolve in fragmented landscapes with a risky matrix, have higher resistance to cross boundaries than individuals from continuous habitats. We show that birds from the fragmented landscape population were indeed more resistant to cross boundaries, as predicted by the model, but they were more successful when compared to birds from the continuous forest dispersing through the fragmented landscape. We also found evidence in favor of a reduced exploratory score for birds from the fragmented landscape indicating that they were slow-explorers, possibly allowing them to explore their environment more thoroughly and enabling them to cross the matrix more successfully. Observed behavioral differences may emerge by either genetic adaptation, if selection pressure is strong, or behavioral plasticity. In any case, because sudden landscape changes may result in non-optimal behaviors, we suggest that, if landscape-change is inevitable, gradual transformations should be preferred to increase the chances of individuals to adjust their behavior (or populations to adapt) to the new environment.

Monday April 9, 2018 3:45pm - 4:00pm CDT
Adams Room