John Orrock

John Orrock
University of Wisconsin–Madison | UW · Department of Zoology

PhD

About

187
Publications
51,261
Reads
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12,129
Citations
Citations since 2016
59 Research Items
8690 Citations
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201620172018201920202021202202004006008001,0001,2001,400
201620172018201920202021202202004006008001,0001,2001,400
Introduction
I am interested in behavior, ecological interactions, and how space mediates ecological and evolutionary dynamics. I am particularly interested in questions where these three themes converge, with a focus on biological invasion, conservation, and disease.

Publications

Publications (187)
Article
Animals are facing novel ‘timescapes’ in which the stimuli entraining their daily activity patterns no longer match historical conditions due to anthropogenic disturbance. However, the ecological effects (e.g., altered physiology, species interactions) of novel activity timing are virtually unknown. We reviewed 1328 studies and found relatively few...
Article
Full-text available
Plant induced defenses may benefit plants by increasing cannibalism among insect herbivores. However, the general efficacy of plant defenses that promote cannibalism remains unclear. Using a generalist Lepidopteran herbivore (Helicoverpa zea), we examined whether plant induced defenses in Solanum lycopersicum increased cannibalism among H. zea and...
Article
Full-text available
Seed dispersal directly affects plant establishment, gene flow and fitness. Understanding patterns in seed dispersal is, therefore, fundamental to understanding plant ecology and evolution, as well as addressing challenges of extinction and global change. Our ability to understand dispersal is limited because seeds may be dispersed by multiple agen...
Preprint
Seed dispersal directly affects plant establishment, gene flow, and fitness. As a result, understanding patterns in seed dispersal is fundamental to understanding plant ecology and evolution, as well as addressing challenges of extinction and global change. Our ability to understand dispersal is limited because few frameworks have emerged that prov...
Article
Full-text available
Understanding the forces that drive genotypic and phenotypic change in wild populations is a central goal of evolutionary biology. We examined exome variation in populations of deer mice from two of the California Channel Islands: Peromyscus maniculatus elusus from Santa Barbara Island and P. m. santacruzae from Santa Cruz Island exhibit significan...
Article
Full-text available
Understanding patterns of seed predation in tallgrass prairie restorations is vital because seed additions are often used by managers to increase diversity and promote native species. However, the success of seed additions depends on the extent of seed predation. It is not clear how seed predation varies through time and to what extent it is affect...
Article
Antipredator behavior affects prey fitness, prey demography, and the strength of ecological interactions. Although predator-prey interactions increasingly occur in habitats that experience multiple forms of human-generated disturbance, it is unclear how different forms of disturbance might affect antipredator behavior. Fire is a contemporary distur...
Article
Because wild rodents often harbor zoonotic pathogens that can be transmitted via saliva, urine, or feces (e.g., hantaviruses), researchers can be at risk when collecting rodent blood or tissue samples that are required for innumerable assays (e.g., infection status, hormone assays, etc.). I describe how inexpensive, readily available 50-mL centrifu...
Article
Sin Nombre virus (SNV) is a zoonotic virus that is highly pathogenic to humans. The deer mouse, Peromyscus maniculatus, is the primary host of SNV, and SNV prevalence in P. maniculatus is an important indicator of human disease risk. Because the California Channel Islands contain permanent human settlements, receive hundreds of thousands of visitor...
Article
Significance The restoration of degraded ecosystems is a global priority, yet successful restoration is challenged by the lingering degrading impacts of human land-use activities, like agriculture. Using a large-scale experiment within the longleaf pine ecosystem, we evaluate how 45 abiotic and biotic ecological properties are affected by legacies...
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Aims In temperate forests, small increases in winter temperature can lead to substantial decreases in snow accumulation, which may alter plant–consumer interactions such as seed predation. However, seed predation by small mammals may also be affected by local habitat structure (e.g., downed woody debris). We tested whether the effect of snow depth...
Article
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Abstract Post‐dispersal seed predation is an important determinant of plant recruitment. Although many plant species are dispersed following consumption by omnivorous vertebrates, the potential for these dispersal agents to indirectly affect seed fate by modifying seed predator behavior is poorly understood. We evaluated the hypothesis that the sca...
Article
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All activity imposes costs, but animals can often alter the timing of their activity to reduce these costs. Metabolic costs of activity are especially high during seasons of energy deficits (such as winter), but the extent to which animals can adjust their activity timing to reduce metabolic costs is unclear. Here, we test the hypothesis that the t...
Article
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Because most tree species recruit from seeds, seed predation by small‐mammal granivores may be important for determining plant distribution and regeneration in forests. Despite the importance of seed predation, large‐scale patterns of small‐mammal granivory are often highly variable and thus difficult to predict. We hypothesize distributions of ape...
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The risk of consumption is a pervasive aspect of ecology and recent work has focused on synthesis of consumer–resource interactions (e.g., enemy–victim ecology). Despite this, theories pertaining to the timing and magnitude of defenses in animals and plants have largely developed independently. However, both animals and plants share the common dile...
Article
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Seed survival is a key process for plant populations; variation in the activity and abundance of animals that consume seeds can lead to dramatic shifts in seed fate. Because granivores may respond to contemporary disturbance as well as to enduring changes in habitats caused by past disturbances, understanding seed fate requires studies capable of e...
Article
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Extreme cold events can damage plant tissues, altering growth and reproduction. Soil fungi may help plants tolerate environmental stressors, but the role these microbes play during episodes of severe cold warrants further examination. Using the bunchgrass Elymus canadensis L., we tested how inoculation with mycorrhizal fungi alters plant tolerance...
Article
Our ability to predict how species will respond to human-induced rapid environmental change (HIREC) may depend upon our understanding of transgenerational plasticity (TGP), which occurs when environments experienced by previous generations influence phenotypes of subsequent generations. TGP evolved to help organisms cope with environmental stressor...
Article
Habitat connectivity enhances diversity Fragmentation of ecosystems leads to loss of biodiversity in the remaining habitat patches, but retaining connecting corridors can reduce these losses. Using long-term data from a large, replicated experiment, Damschen et al. show quantitatively how these losses are reduced. In their pine savanna system, corr...
Article
Plant interactions with herbivores and pathogens are among the most widespread ecological relationships, and show many congruent properties. Despite these similarities, general models describing how plant defenses function in ecosystems, and prioritization of responses to emerging challenges like climate change, invasive species, and habitat altera...
Article
Animals adjust the timing of their activity to maximize benefits, such as access to resources, and minimize costs, such as exposure to predators. Despite many examples of invasive plants changing animal behavior, the potential for invasive plants to alter the timing of animal activity remains unexplored. In eastern North America, invasive shrubs mi...
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The study of mammals has promoted the development and testing of many ideas in contemporary ecology. Here we address recent developments in foraging and habitat selection, source–sink dynamics, competition (both within and between species), population cycles, predation (including apparent competition), mutualism, and biological invasions. Because m...
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Agricultural land use is a leading cause of habitat degradation, leaving a legacy of ecological impacts long after agriculture has ceased. Yet the mechanisms for legacy effects, such as altered plant community composition, are not well understood. In particular, whether plant community recovery is limited by an inability of populations to establish...
Article
Ecological novelty, when conditions deviate from a historical baseline, is increasingly common as humans modify habitats and communities across the globe. Our ability to anticipate how novelty changes predator–prey interactions will likely hinge upon the explicit evaluation of multiple forms of novelty, rather than a focus on single forms of novelt...
Article
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Premise of the study: Extreme weather events can injure plants, causing decreased survival. However, we may underestimate the ecological importance of extreme events if they have strong sublethal effects that manifest after several months. We tested the hypothesis that late-winter extreme-cold events decrease the ability of woody plants to grow an...
Article
Capture-recapture methods are commonly used to estimate abundance and density of wild animal populations. Although a variety of sophisticated analytical techniques are available to evaluate capture-recapture data, vertebrate monitoring programs often lack the resources (e.g., time, personnel, and/or analytical expertise) to apply these methods. As...
Article
Physical stresses, such as exposure to cold, can affect plant recruitment, survival, and demography. The ability of plants to tolerate physical stress, however, may depend upon the co-occurrence of other stresses. For example, although plants undergo physiological changes to increase defense against herbivores, it is unknown whether chemical signal...
Article
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It is well established that circulating maternal stress hormones (glucocorticoids, GCs) can alter offspring phenotype. There is also a growing body of empirical work, within ecology and evolution, indicating that maternal GCs link the environment experienced by the mother during gestation with changes in offspring phenotype. These changes are consi...
Article
Recently plant biologists have documented that plants, like animals, engage in many activities that can be considered as behaviors, although plant biologists currently lack a conceptual framework to understand these processes. Borrowing the well‐established framework developed by psychologists, we propose that plant behaviors can be constructively...
Article
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Although induced defenses are widespread in plants, the degree to which plants respond to herbivore kairomones (incidental chemicals that herbivores produce independent of herbivory), the costs and benefits of responding to cues of herbivory risk, and the ecological consequences of induced defenses remain unclear. We demonstrate that undamaged toma...
Article
Timing is an essential component of the choices that animals make: The likelihood of successful resource capture (and predator avoidance) depends not just on what an animal chooses to do, but when it chooses to do it. Despite the importance of activity timing, our ability to understand the forces that constrain activity timing has been limited beca...
Article
Plants are attacked by myriad herbivores, and many plants exhibit anti-herbivore defences. We tested the hypothesis that induced defences benefit tomato plants by encouraging insects to eat other members of their species. We found that defences that promote cannibalism benefit tomatoes in two ways: cannibalism directly reduces herbivore abundance,...
Article
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Fungicide application facilitates seed and seedling survival, but these pesticides may also negatively affect germination. Moreover, it is unclear how fungicide may interact with influential environmental conditions, such as cold stratification, to affect tree seed germination. We examined how fungicide and five different cold stratification durati...
Article
Abandoned agricultural lands often have distinct plant communities from areas with no history of agriculture because plant species fail to recolonize. This may be due to dispersal limitation from a lack of seeds, or establishment limitation because of unsuitable environmental conditions. However, few experiments have directly tested how restoration...
Article
Full-text available
Seed and seedling survival are key components of plant population persistence. Although freeze–thaw events are experienced by many dispersed seeds in temperate ecosystems, it is unclear whether freeze–thaw stresses experienced by seeds can alter seedling susceptibility to herbivores during the growing season. We evaluated how freezing stress (tempe...
Article
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Recent evidence suggests that invasive exotic plants can provide novel habitats that alter animal behavior. However, it remains unclear whether classic animal-habitat associations that influence the spatial distribution of plant-animal interactions, such as small mammal use of downed woody debris, persist in invaded habitats. We removed an invasive...
Article
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Habitat fragmentation can lead to major changes in community composition, but little is known about the dynamics of these changes, or how community trajectories are affected by the initial state of habitat maturity. We use four landscape-scale experiments from different biogeographic regions to understand how plant community composition responds to...
Article
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Patterns of animal activity provide important insight into hypotheses in animal behavior, physiological ecology, behavioral ecology, as well as population and community ecology. Understanding patterns of animal activity in field settings is often complicated by the need for expensive equipment and time-intensive methods that limit data collection....
Data
Known exit data. (CSV)
Data
Known entry and exit data. (CSV)
Data
Closed trap data. (CSV)
Data
Known entry data. (CSV)
Article
Full-text available
Although studies often focus on the direct effects of invasive species on native taxa, invasive species may also alter interactions among native species. For example Solenopsis invicta, the red imported fire ant, may directly alter native seed survival by consuming seeds, but also indirectly alter seed survival, by altering the abundance and/or beh...
Article
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Disturbance may play a key role in affecting animal invasions; less appreciated is that past and present disturbances might interact to affect invasion. For example, although large portions of forest ecosystems worldwide are jointly affected by a history of past agricultural land use as well as contemporary timber harvest, it is unclear whether the...
Article
Full-text available
Historical agriculture and present-day fire regimes can have significant effects on contemporary ecosystems. Although past agricultural land use can lead to long-term changes in plant communities, it remains unclear whether these persistent land-use legacies alter plant-consumer interactions, such as seed predation, and whether contemporary disturb...
Article
The strength of interactions among species is often highly variable in space and time, and a major challenge in understanding context-dependent effects of herbivores lies in disentangling habitat-mediated from herbivore-mediated effects on plant performance. We conducted a landscape-scale experiment that manipulated light availability in woodlands...
Article
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Habitat fragmentation can create significant impediments to dispersal. A technique to increase dispersal between otherwise isolated fragments is the use of corridors. Although previous studies have compared dispersal between connected fragments to dispersal between unconnected fragments, it remains unknown how dispersal between fragments connected...
Article
Full-text available
Habitat fragmentation can create significant impediments to dispersal. A technique to increase dispersal between otherwise isolated fragments is the use of corridors. Although previous studies have compared dispersal between connected fragments to dispersal between unconnected fragments, it remains unknown how dispersal between fragments connected...
Article
Full-text available
Despite increasing evidence that herbivory on a focal plant may hinge upon the identity of its neighbors, it is not clear whether predictable mechanisms govern the nature and magnitude of such associational effects. Using a factorial field experiment replicated at 14 sites across 80,000 hectares, we evaluated the mechanisms driving associational ef...
Article
Invasive exotic plants may generate deleterious indirect effects on native species, such as increasing consumer pressure on native plants (i.e. apparent competition). Although rarely examined, invasive shrubs may create novel pulses of consumer pressure because their leaves senesce later, providing temporal increases in cover. Apparent competition...
Article
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Fraser et al. (Reports, 17 July 2015, p. 302) report a unimodal relationship between productivity and species richness at regional and global scales, which they contrast with the results of Adler et al. (Reports, 23 September 2011, p. 1750). However, both data sets, when analyzed correctly, show clearly and consistently that productivity is a poor...
Article
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How ecosystem productivity and species richness are interrelated is one of the most debated subjects in the history of ecology. Decades of intensive study have yet to discern the actual mechanisms behind observed global patterns. Here, by integrating the predictions from multiple theories into a single model and using data from 1,126 grassland plot...
Article
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The spatial arrangement of past and present human activities could affect the strength of species interactions through changes to environmental conditions. To better understand how land-use history might mediate the effect of insect herbivory on the growth of four herbaceous plant species at the edges between woodlands and open savannas, we coupled...
Article
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Exotic species dominate many communities; however the functional significance of species’ biogeographic origin remains highly contentious. This debate is fuelled in part by the lack of globally replicated, systematic data assessing the relationship between species provenance, function and response to perturbations. We examined the abundance of nati...
Article
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Herbivores can greatly reduce plant fitness. Error management theory (EMT) predicts the evolution of adaptive plant defensive strategies that err towards making less-costly errors so as to avoid making rare, costly errors. EMT provides a common framework for understanding observed levels of variation in plant defense among and within species. Copyr...
Article
Full-text available
Global climate change is altering thermal cycles in soils during late winter, a transition that may directly threaten seed survival via abiotic stress, facilitate infection by soil-borne pathogens, or both. Using field-collected soil and seeds of the perennial bunchgrass Elymus canadensis, we tested the hypothesis that soil freeze-thaw events limit...
Article
Humans dominate many important Earth system processes including the nitrogen (N) cycle. Atmospheric N deposition affects fundamental processes such as carbon cycling, climate regulation, and biodiversity, and could result in changes to fundamental Earth system processes such as primary production. Both modelling and experimentation have suggested a...
Article
Direct and indirect effects can play a key role in invasions, but experiments evaluating both are rare. We examined the roles of direct competition and apparent competition by exotic Amur honeysuckle (Lonicera maackii) by manipulating (1) L. maackii vegetation, (2) presence of L. maackii fruits, and (3) access to plants by small mammals and deer. D...
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We conducted an analysis of global forest cover to reveal that 70% of remaining forest is within 1 km of the forest’s edge, subject to the degrading effects of fragmentation. A synthesis of fragmentation experiments spanning multiple biomes and scales, five continents, and 35 years demonstrates that habitat fragmentation reduces biodiversity by 13...
Article
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Land-use legacies are known to shape the diversity and distribution of plant communities, but we lack an understanding of whether historical land use influences community responses to contemporary disturbances. Because human-modified landscapes often bear a history of multiple land-use activities, this contingency can challenge our understanding of...
Conference Paper
The importance of associational effects—where the amount of insect herbivore damage received by a focal plant depends on the identity of its neighbors—is being increasingly recognized in many ecosystems. We tested four alternative hypotheses regarding how neighboring plants affect herbivory by grasshoppers on a focal plant: H1a: the herbivore repel...
Article
Full-text available
Past land use can create altered soil conditions and plant communities that persist for decades, although the effects of these altered conditions on consumers are rarely investigated.Using a large-scale field study at 36 sites in longleaf pine (Pinus palustris) woodlands, we examined whether historic agricultural land use leads to differences in th...
Article
Full-text available
AimLarge-scale patterns linking energy availability, biological productivity and diversity form a central focus of ecology. Despite evidence that the activity and abundance of animals may be limited by climatic variables associated with regional biological productivity (e.g. mean annual precipitation and annual actual evapotranspiration), it is unc...