Time-series in evolutionary and conservation biology is essential for the understanding of processes in-situ. Genetic and ecological information collected from single points in time only represent snap shots and often yield an incomplete picture of historical and ongoing biological processes in populations. The genetic composition of a population is shaped by the interaction of contemporary and historical factors. Temporal genetic analyses of populations using historic material collected generations ago can help to disentangle the effects of modern and historical forces and facilitates the understanding of the forces driving specific differentiation events. Such an approach enables the exploration of genetic changes over short and intermediate time spans, as shown on inter- and intraspecific diversity – using species composition, morphologic characters and molecules.
Read more: Augenstein B, Ulrich W, Habel JC (2012) Directional temporal shifts in community structure of butterflies and ground beetles in fragmented oligotrophic grasslands of Central Europe. Journal of Basic and Applied Ecology 13: 715-724.
Habel JC, Husemann M, Finger A, Danley PD, Zachos FE (2014) The relevance of time series in molecular ecology and conservation biology. Biological Reviews 89: 484-492.