Ignacio Morales‐Castilla

Ignacio Morales‐Castilla
University of Alcalá | UAH

PhD in Ecology

About

64
Publications
16,298
Reads
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1,780
Citations
Introduction
My research aims to improve predictions of the distribution of biodiversity across time and space. Doing so is critical to anticipate, mitigate and adapt to the negative outcomes that global change poses on wildlife, agriculture and human health. My work integrates the temporal dimension at varying scales into the study of the spatial distribution of biodiversity. Recently, I have started to join process-based and niche models to tackle questions of applied interest at biogeographical scales.
Additional affiliations
September 2014 - September 2015
Universidade de Évora
Position
  • Research Associate
September 2014 - present
McGill University
Position
  • PostDoc Position
September 2007 - April 2013
University of Alcalá
Position
  • Research Assistant

Publications

Publications (64)
Preprint
In a recent study, Cantwell-Jones et al. (2022) proposed a list of 1044 species as promising key sources of B vitamins based primarily on phylogenetic predictions. To identify candidate plants, they fitted lambda models of evolution to edible species with known values in each of six B vitamins (232 to 280 species) and used the estimated parameters...
Article
Climate change has advanced plant phenology globally 4‐6 days per °C on average. Such shifts are some of the most reported and predictable biological impacts of rising temperatures. Yet as climate change has marched on, phenological shifts have appeared muted over recent decades—failing to match simple predictions of an advancing spring with contin...
Article
Full-text available
Context Domesticated animals play a central role in agricultural landscapes. However, livestock has been scarcely studied from a spatial perspective. Mapping of livestock diversity has been limited by the lack of distribution and demography data. This shortfall limits both the reach of actions aimed to conserve threatened breeds and their considera...
Article
Full-text available
Species are shifting their distributions in response to climate change. This geographic reshuffling may result in novel co-occurrences among species, which could lead to unseen biotic interactions, including the exchange of parasites between previously isolated hosts. Identifying potential new host–parasite interactions would improve forecasting of...
Article
A growing body of research is focused on the extinction of parasite species in response to host endangerment and declines. Beyond the loss of parasite species richness, host extinction can impact apparent parasite host specificity, as measured by host richness or the phylogenetic distances among hosts. Such impacts on the distribution of parasites...
Article
Recently, multiple studies have reported declining phenological sensitivities (∆ days per ℃) with higher temperatures. Such observations have been used to suggest climate change is reshaping biological processes, with major implications for forecasts of future change. Here, we show that these results may simply be the outcome of using linear models...
Preprint
A growing body of research is focused on the extinction of parasite species in response to host endangerment and declines. Beyond the loss of parasite species richness, host extinction can impact apparent parasite host specificity, as measured by host richness or the phylogenetic distances among hosts. Such impacts on the distribution of parasites...
Article
Full-text available
Identifying structure underlying high-dimensional data is a common challenge across scientific disciplines. We revisit correspondence analysis (CA), a classical method revealing such structures, from a network perspective. We present the poorly-known equivalence of CA to spectral clustering and graph-embedding techniques. We point out a number of c...
Article
Full-text available
Understanding how species’ thermal limits have evolved across the tree of life is central to predicting species’ responses to climate change. Here, using experimentally-derived estimates of thermal tolerance limits for over 2000 terrestrial and aquatic species, we show that most of the variation in thermal tolerance can be attributed to a combinati...
Preprint
Full-text available
Temperature sensitivity--the magnitude of a biological response per °C--is a fundamental concept across scientific disciplines, especially biology, where temperature determines the rate of many plant, animal and ecosystem processes. Recently, a growing body of literature in global change biology has found temperature sensitivities decline as temper...
Article
Climate change causes both temporal (e.g., advancing spring phenology) and geographic (e.g., range ex pansion poleward) species shifts, which affect the photoperiod experienced at critical developmental stages (`experienced photoperiod'). As photoperiod is a common trigger of seasonal biological responses‐affecting woody plant spring phenology in 8...
Article
Full-text available
Native livestock breeds, i.e. those autochthonous to a specific region, are locally adapted domesticated animals that conserve genetic resources, guaranty food security and provide agroecosystem services. Native breeds are largely threatened worldwide by agricultural intensification and rural areas abandonment processes related to recent changes in...
Article
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Research on woody plant species highlights three major cues that shape spring phenological events: chilling, forcing and photoperiod. Increasing research on the phenological impacts of climate change has led to debate over whether chilling and/or photoperiod cues have slowed phenological responses to warming in recent years. Here we use a global me...
Article
Full-text available
Aim Wild biodiversity and agrobiodiversity are affected by challenges such as agricultural intensification. However, it is unknown whether or not both components of biodiversity respond similarly to environmental factors and to these challenges. Here, we examine the spatial relationships between the distributions of wild biodiversity and agrobiodiv...
Article
Phenology is a major component of an organism's fitness. While individual phenological events affect fitness, growing evidence suggests that the relationship between events may be equally or more important. This may explain why temperate deciduous woody plants exhibit considerable variation in the order of reproductive and vegetative events, or owe...
Article
(1) Temperate forests are shaped by late spring freezes after budburst—false springs—which may shift with climate change. Research to date has generated conflicting results, potentially because few studies focus on the multiple underlying drivers of false spring risk. (2) Here, we assessed the effects of mean spring temperature, distance from the c...
Article
Full-text available
Agrobiodiversity—the variation within agricultural plants, animals, and practices—is often suggested as a way to mitigate the negative impacts of climate change on crops [S. A. Wood et al. , Trends Ecol. Evol. 30, 531–539 (2015)]. Recently, increasing research and attention has focused on exploiting the intraspecific genetic variation within a crop...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
Decades of fundamental research in phenology outline how three major environmental cues, chilling (cool temperatures, generally occurring in the fall and late winter), forcing (warm temperatures, generally occurring in the late winter and early spring), and photoperiod (daylength), provide multiple routes to budburst each spring, depending on the e...
Article
We test the ability of the biotic exchange across the Bering land bridge coupled to niche conservatism to explain current day mammalian diversity gradients. The Holarctic. Mammals. We compared the diversity within clades that participated in the exchange (colonizers), whose ancestors withstood the Beringian cold temperatures, with that within clade...
Article
Parasites are a major component of global ecosystems, yet spatial variation in parasite diversity is poorly known, largely because their occurrence data are limited and thus difficult to interpret. Using a recently compiled database of parasite occurrences, we compare different models which we use to infer parasite geographic ranges and parasite sp...
Preprint
Full-text available
Many mechanisms have been hypothesized to explain Bergmanns rule - the correlation of body size with latitude. However, it is not feasible to assess the contribution of hypothesised mechanisms by experimental manipulation or statistical correlation. Here, we evaluate two of the principal hypothesised mechanisms, related to thermoregulation and reso...
Data
This digital atlas of the major winegrowing regions of the World delineates winegrape producing regions as provided by Oz Clark's (2007) . The shapefile comprises a total of 302 polygons distributed across 6 continents and its purpose is to develop spatially explicit analyses of winegrowing at a large or global scale (note that fine scale resolutio...
Article
Linking variation in species' traits to large-scale environmental gradients can lend insight into the evolutionary processes that have shaped functional diversity and future responses to environmental change. Here, we ask how heat and cold tolerance vary as a function of latitude, elevation and climate extremes, using an extensive global dataset of...
Article
Aim Many hypotheses exist to explain the astonishing variation in geographical range size across species, but these have rarely been tested under a unifying framework that simultaneously considers direct and indirect effects of ecological niche processes and evolutionary dynamics. Here, we jointly evaluate ecological and evolutionary hypotheses tha...
Article
Full-text available
Aim We examined body size scaling relationships for two developmental life stages of parasitic helminths (egg and adult) separately in relationship to latitude (i.e. Bergmann's rule), temperature and temperature seasonality. Given that helminth eggs experience environmental conditions more directly, whereas adults live inside infected host individu...
Article
In a recent publication (Pearse et al. 2018b), we explored the macroevolution and macroecology of passerine song using a large citizen science database of bird songs and powerful machine learning tools. Mikula et al. (2018) examine a small subset (<8%) of the data we used, and suggest that our metric of song complexity, the standard deviation of fr...
Article
Despite numerous efforts and many hypotheses to explain the selective pressures that may have favoured reversed sexual dimorphism (RSD) in raptors ‐ i.e. that the female is larger than the male ‐ some drivers of RSD are still unknown. Here we analyse how much variation in RSD is explained by hunting habitat structure, territoriality or territory si...
Article
Full-text available
Animal territoriality, defined here as defence of well-delimited breeding areas to exclude competitors, has been widely studied. However, the phylogenetic and ecological characteristics influencing the variation in the expression of this behaviour are poorly understood. We evaluated the effect of phylogeny and key ecological factors on territorial...
Article
Full-text available
Despite growing appreciation of the importance of considering a pace-of-life syndrome (POLS) perspective to understand how animals interact with their environment, studies relating behavior to life history under altered environmental conditions are still rare. By means of a comparative analysis of flight initiation distances (i.e., the distance at...
Article
Full-text available
How climate affects species distributions is a longstanding question receiving renewed interest owing to the need to predict the impacts of global warming on biodiversity. Is climate change forcing species to live near their critical thermal limits? Are these limits likely to change through natural selection? These and other important questions can...
Article
Studying the macroevolution of the songs of Passeriformes (perching birds) has proved challenging. The complexity of the task stems not just from the macroevolutionary and macroecological challenge of modelling so many species, but also from the difficulty in collecting and quantifying birdsong itself. Using machine learning techniques, we extracte...
Preprint
Full-text available
Successful explanations for diversity gradients should account for both the generalized tendency towards a higher tropical diversity and its exceptions. Moreover, identifying exceptions to general trends, such as the latitudinal diversity gradient can give insight into the mechanistic explanations responsible for structuring them. The Cenozoic biot...
Preprint
Full-text available
Successful explanations for diversity gradients should account for both the generalized tendency towards a higher tropical diversity and its exceptions. Moreover, identifying exceptions to general trends, such as the latitudinal diversity gradient can give insight into the mechanistic explanations responsible for structuring them. The Cenozoic biot...
Article
Predicted impacts of climate change on crops—including yield declines and loss of conservation lands—could be mitigated by exploiting existing diversity within crops. Here we examine this possibility for wine grapes. Across 1,100 planted varieties, wine grapes possess tremendous diversity in traits that affect responses to climate, such as phenolog...
Article
In order to understand the ecological effects of climate change it is essential to forecast suitable areas for species in the future. However, species’ ability to reach potentially suitable areas is also critical for species survival. These ‘range-shift’ abilities can be studied using life-history traits related to four range-shift stages: emigrati...
Article
Full-text available
Invasive species are considered a major threat to ecosystem functioning and native biodiversity. Their negative impacts on ecosystems and the provisioning of ecosystem services have been widely documented. South Africa faces one of the most significant challenges from invasive species globally, and the South African government spent an estimated US...
Article
We present a novel quantitative framework that combines information on phylogeny and the spatial distributions of related species to enhance the single-species distributional models commonly used in ecology. While species distribution models (SDMs) are becoming increasingly sophisticated, they rarely take into consideration the shared evolutionary...
Article
Full-text available
Forests represent one of the most important terrestrial ecosystems, given the high biodiversity they harbour and the number of ecosystem services they provide. Thus, it is necessary to study and forecast the existing threats that endanger them. Climate change is one of the biggest threats over such ecosystems, and as such estimation of its future i...
Article
Aim Bergmann's rule remains unexplored in marine mammals. We first examine at a global extent whether these organisms show the same interspecific pattern reported for terrestrial mammals and then evaluate the influence of current environmental conditions and human impacts on the observed patterns. Location Global. Methods We used range maps to do...
Article
http://authors.elsevier.com/a/1SZNZcZ3WTm5~ # around paywall access until April !! Information on the ecological traits of species might improve predictions of climate-driven range shifts. However, the usefulness of traits is usually assumed rather than quantified. Here, we present a framework to identify the most informative traits, based on four...
Article
Ecological theory predicts that fragmentation aggravates the effects of habitat loss, yet empirical results show mixed evidences, which fail to support the theory instead reinforcing the primary importance of habitat loss. Fragmentation hypotheses have received much attention due to their potential implications for biodiversity conservation, howeve...
Article
Understanding the factors that govern species' geographical ranges is of utmost importance for predicting potential range shifts triggered by environmental change. Species ranges are partially limited by their tolerances to extrinsic environmental conditions such as climate and habitat. However, they are also determined by the capacity of species t...
Article
Inferring biotic interactions from functional, phylogenetic and geographical proxies remains one great challenge in ecology. We propose a conceptual framework to infer the backbone of biotic interaction networks within regional species pools. First, interacting groups are identified to order links and remove forbidden interactions between species....
Conference Paper
Full-text available
Models of species distributions have proven valuable for understanding biodiversity gradients and for making predictions of future species’ responses to changing environment. Although species distribution models are becoming increasingly sophisticated and can include factors other than climate (i.e. traits, biotic interactions, etc.),they rarely ta...
Article
Full-text available
I. Morales-Castilla esta financiado por el Programa Integrado de IC&DT (No. 1/SAESCTN/ALENT-07-0224-FEDER-001755). R. Garcia-Valdes esta financiado por el proyecto POIC10-0311-0585, de la Junta de Comunidades de Castilla-La Mancha.
Article
Theory predicts that fragmentation aggravates habitat loss, increasing the extinction threshold of habitat specialists.However, contradictory empirical results have fuelled claims that fragmentation has been overemphasized, and more attention should be given to habitat loss for preserving species. We assess variation in species sensitivity to fores...
Article
AimTo quantify the contributions of environment, phylogeny and geography to variation in the breeding and non‐breeding geographical range sizes of oscine passerines. LocationWestern Hemisphere. Methods Breeding range sizes were estimated for 420 species, and non‐breeding ranges were estimated for 122 migratory species. Phylogenetic, environmental a...
Conference Paper
Background/Question/Methods That large scale diversity patterns are imprinted by phenomena occurred along the evolutionary history of the taxa is not a novel idea. Historical facts such as palaeoclimatic changes, palaeogeographical modifications and subsequent biotic exchanges would have contributed to the shifting and shaping of the geographical...
Article
Ecology, evolution, and historical events all contribute to biogeographic patterns, but studies that integrate them are scarce. Here we focus on how biotic exchanges of mammals during the Late Cenozoic have contributed to current geographic body size patterns. We explore differences in the environmental correlates and phylogenetic patterning of bod...
Article
Body size is evolutionarily constrained, but the influence of phylogenetic relationships on global body size (i.e. body mass) gradients is unexplored. We quantify and map the family-level phylogenetic and non-phylogenetic structure of the global gradient of birds, evaluating the extent to which it is influenced by phylogenetic inertia in contrast t...
Data
Body mass estimations for species belonging to 61 genera of extinct mammals of the New World. Only Pleistocene megafaunal species and genera are considered (≥44 kg) since they are known to have selectively been driven extinct. Body size values were obtained from Smith et al. (2003), and for unspecific generic fossil records an average of the body s...
Article
Among the statistical methods available to control for phylogenetic autocorrelation in ecological data, those based on eigenfunction analysis of the phylogenetic distance matrix among the species are becoming increasingly important tools. Here, we evaluate a range of criteria to select eigenvectors extracted from a phylogenetic distance matrix (usi...
Article
Niche conservatism has been proposed as a mechanism influencing large-scale patterns of taxonomic richness. We document the species richness patterns of five monophyletic squamate reptile groups (gekkonids, cordylids-scincids, lacertids, chameleons and alethinophidian snakes) in eastern and southern Africa, and explore if observed patterns reflect...
Article
A major focus of geographical ecology and macroecology is to understand the causes of spatially structured ecological patterns. However, achieving this understanding can be complicated when using multiple regression, because the relative importance of explanatory variables, as measured by regression coefficients, can shift depending on whether spat...
Article
Full-text available
Recent studies addressing broad-scale species richness gradients have proposed two main primary drivers: contemporary climate and evolutionary processes (differential balance between speciation and extinction). Here, we analyze the global richness patterns of two venomous snake clades, Viperidae and Elapidae. We used ordinary least squares multiple...

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