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The costs of mischoosing are not uniform across individuals


Matching habitat choice is a particular form of habitat selection based on self?assessment of local performance that offers individuals a means to optimize the match of phenotype to the environment. Despite the advantages of this mechanism in terms of increased local adaptation, examples from natural populations are extremely rare. One possible reason for the apparent rarity of matching habitat choice is that it might be manifest only in those segments of a population for which the cost of a phenotype–environment mismatch is high. To test this hypothesis, we used a breeding population of sockeye salmon (Oncorhynchus nerka) exposed to size-dependent predation risk by bears, and evaluated the costs of mischoosing in discrete groups (e.g. male versus females, and ocean?age 2 versus ocean?age 3) using reproductive life span as a measure of individual performance. Bear preference for larger fish, especially in shallow water, translates into a performance trade-off that sockeye salmon can potentially use to guide their settlement decisions. Consistent with matching habitat choice, we found that salmon of similar ocean?age and size tended to cluster together in sites of similar water depth. However, matching habitat choice was only favoured in 3?ocean females – the segment of the population most vulnerable to bear predation. This study illustrates the unequal relevance of matching habitat choice to different segments of a population, and suggests that ‘partial matching habitat choice' could have resulted in an underestimation of the actual prevalence of this mechanism in nature. informacion[at] Camacho & Hendry (2020) Matching habitat choice: it's not for everyone. Oikos DOI 10.1111/oik.06932
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Recent shift in the pigmentation phenotype of a wild Neotropical primate

Recent shift in the pigmentation phenotype of a wild Neotropical primate

The colors of primates are among the most diverse phenotypes in mammals. These colors are mostly produced by the deposition of melanin pigments in hairs. Many species show considerable variability in pigmentation, but this is always temporarily fixed. Here the first rapid change in the pigmentation phenotype of a primate is reported. In the last five years, the pelage of mantled howler monkeys Alouatta palliata inhabiting Costa Rica has started to change from fully black to yellowish, constituting a conspicuous color change. Raman spectroscopy analyses of hairs show that the change is due to a shift toward the production of the sulphurated form of melanin, termed pheomelanin. Most animals with anomalous coloration have been observed in forests surrounding intensive cultivations where sulfur-containing pesticides are frequently used. Exposure to environmental sulfur may increase the availability of sulfhydryls to cells, which may favor pheomelanin synthesis in melanocytes and explain the pigmentation shift. informacion[at] Galván et al (2018) A recent shift in the pigmentation phenotype of a wild Neotropical primate. Mammalian Biol. Doi 10.1016/j.mambio.2018.10.007