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Sample records for breeding habitat improves

  1. Familiarity with breeding habitat improves daily survival in colonial cliff swallows

    PubMed Central

    BROWN, CHARLES R.; BROWN, MARY BOMBERGER; BRAZEAL, KATHLEEN R.

    2008-01-01

    One probable cost of dispersing to a new breeding habitat is unfamiliarity with local conditions such as the whereabouts of food or the habits of local predators, and consequently immigrants may have lower probabilities of survival than more experienced residents. Within a breeding season, estimated daily survival probabilities of cliff swallows (Petrochelidon pyrrhonota) at colonies in southwestern Nebraska were highest for birds that had always nested at the same site, followed by those for birds that had nested there in some (but not all) past years. Daily survival probabilities were lowest for birds that were naïve immigrants to a colony site and for yearling birds that were nesting for the first time. Birds with past experience at a colony site had monthly survival 8.6% greater than that of naïve immigrants. All colonies where experienced residents did better than immigrants were smaller than 750 nests in size, and in colonies greater than 750 nests, naïve immigrants paid no survival costs relative to experienced residents. Removal of nest ectoparasites by fumigation resulted in higher survival probabilities for all birds, on average, and diminished the differences between immigrants and past residents, probably by improving bird condition to the extent that effects of past experience were relatively less important and harder to detect. The greater survival of experienced residents could not be explained by condition or territory quality, suggesting that familiarity with a local area confers survival advantages during the breeding season for cliff swallows. Colonial nesting may help to moderate the cost of unfamiliarity with an area, likely through social transfer of information about food sources and enhanced vigilance in large groups. PMID:19802326

  2. Habitat Suitability Index Models: Lesser Scaup (Breeding)

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Allen, Arthur W.

    1986-01-01

    A review and synthesis of existing information were used to develop a Habitat Suitability Index (HSI) model for the lesser scaup (Aythya affinis). The model consolidates habitat use information into a framework appropriate for field application, and is scaled to produce an index between 0.0 (unsuitable habitat) to 1.0 (optimum habitat). HSI models are designed to be used with Habitat Evaluation Procedures previously developed by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.

  3. Breeding-ground habitat conditions and the survival of mallards

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Nichols, J.D.; Pospahala, R.S.; Hines, J.E.

    1982-01-01

    The relationship between habitat conditions in prairie breeding areas of North America and mallard (Anas platyrhynchos) survival rates was investigated. Annual survival-rate estimates for mallards generally were higher during years of high May pond numbers and low mallards-per-pond ratios than during years of low pond numbers and high ratios. This tendency was most pronounced among males. These results suggest that mallard survival probabilities may be affected by breeding-ground habitat conditions.

  4. Habitat selection by breeding red-winged blackbirds

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Albers, P.H.

    1978-01-01

    Habitat preferences of breeding Red-winged Blackbirds in an agricultural area were determined by comparing population density, landscape characteristics, and vegetational descriptions. Observations were made throughout the breeding season. Preferred breeding habitats of Red-wings, in order of preference, were wetlands, hayfields, old fields, and pastures. Males and females occupied old fields and wetlands first, then hayfields, and finally, pastures. Cutting of hayfields caused territorial abandonment by both sexes within 48 h. The apparent movement of displaced females from cut hayfields to uncut hayfields suggests that habitat fidelity of females is strong after the breeding effort has begun. Breeding Red-wings exhibited general preferences for trees, large amounts of habitat edge, erect old vegetation, and sturdy, tall, and dense vegetation. Vegetative forms and species, such as upland grasses, broad- and narrow-leafed monocots in wetlands, and forbs were important to the Red-wing at various times during the breeding season. Landscape and vegetational preferences of breeding adults were easier to observe early in the breeding season (March through May) than later. Vegetational growth and increases in the size of the breeding population probably make these preferences more difficult to detect. Territory size was poorly correlated with landscape and vegetational characteristics in uplands but strongly correlated with broad- and narrow-leafed mono cots and vegetative height in wetlands. Wetland territories were smaller than upland territories. Territories increased in size during the middle and late portions of the breedi g season. Habitat selection by the Red-winged Blackbird can best be studied by evaluating vegetative preferences throughout the breeding season.

  5. Breeding canvasbacks: a test of a habitat model

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Johnson, D.H.; Hammond, M.C.; McDonald, T.L.; Nustad, C.L.

    1989-01-01

    Schroeder (1984) proposed a habitat suitability model for breeding canvasbacks (Aythya valisineria) based on the size, water regime, and emergent vegetation of wetlands. We evaluated the model with data from surveys of canvasbacks on 2265 wetlands in North Dakota, South Dakota, and Minnesota. The model proved inadequate as a predictor of canvasback pair density; the correlation between values produced by the model and canvasback pair densities was r = 0.0023 (P = 0.911). There were, however, suggestions of (1) higher canvasback density and frequency of occurrence on wetlands with more open interiors, and (2) a relation between canvasback density and wetland size that varied according to wetland permanence. We recommend that the model be improved by testing these relations, and possibly by incorporating determinants of water quality or pondweed (Potamogeton spp.) occurrence.

  6. A multiscaled model of southwestern willow flycatcher breeding habitat

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Hatten, J.R.; Paradzick, C.E.

    2003-01-01

    The southwestern willow flycatcher (SWFL; Empidonax traillii extimus) is an endangered songbird whose habitat has declined dramatically over the last century. Understanding habitat selection patterns and the ability to identify potential breeding areas for the SWFL is crucial to the management and conservation of this species. We developed a multiscaled model of SWTL breeding habitat with a Geographic Information System (GIS), survey data, GIS variables, and multiple logistic regressions. We obtained presence and absence survey data from a riverine ecosystem and a reservoir delta in south-central Arizona, USA, in 1999. We extracted the GIS variables from satellite imagery and digital elevation models to characterize vegetation and floodplain within the project area. We used multiple logistic regressions within a cell-based (30 X 30 m) modeling environment to (1) determine associations between GIS variables and breeding-site occurrence at different spatial scales (0.09-72 ha), and (2) construct a predictive model. Our best model explained 54% of the variability in breeding-site occurrence with the following variables: vegetation density at the site (0.09 ha), proportion of dense vegetation and variability in vegetation density within a 4.5-ha neighborhood, and amount of floodplain or flat terrain within a 41-ha neighborhood. The density of breeding sites was highest in areas that the model predicted to be most suitable within the project area and at an external test site 200 km away. Conservation efforts must focus on protecting not only occupied patches, but also surrounding riparian forests and floodplain to ensure long-term viability of SWTL. We will use the multiscaled model to map SWTL breeding habitat in Arizona, prioritize future survey effort, and examine changes in habitat abundance and quality over time.

  7. Infection persistence time of Aedes breeding habitats

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bicout, D. J.; Chalvet-Monfray, K.; Sabatier, P.

    2002-03-01

    The Aedes mosquito species are capable of maintaining the circulation of viruses only by the strategy of transovarial transmission and diapause of eggs. It is found that when the transovarial transmission is inhibited, the survival time of the presence of viruses in a given mosquito habitat is limited from above by the eggs lifetime. In contrast, when the transovarial transmission is turned on, the infection persistence time may largely exceed both the eggs lifetime and flooding period depending upon the production rate of infected eggs. We present a simple model allowing the derivation of analytical expressions of the infection persistence time.

  8. A Wildlife Habitat Improvement Plan.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Rogers, S. Elaine

    The document presents an overview of Stony Acres, a "sanctuary" for wildlife as well as a place for recreation enjoyment and education undertakings. A review of the history of wildlife habitat management at Stony Acres and the need for continued and improved wildlife habitat management for the property are discussed in Chapter I. Chapter II…

  9. Observations on anopheline breeding in relation to aquatic plants in different breeding habitats of Kheda (Gujarat).

    PubMed

    Kant, Rajni; Srivastava, H C

    2004-09-01

    Water bodies infested with aquatic vegetations may pose problems in mosquito control through bio-environmental methods. Paucity of information pertaining to association of mosquito breeding with aquatic vegetation was the basis for present investigation. The mosquito breeding sites infested with solitary/dominating plant community viz., Eichhornia crassipes, Ipomoea aquatica, Hydrilla verticillata, Nymphea neuchali, Trapa bispinosa, Lemna paucicostata, Trachelomonas spp., Azolla pinnata, Algae spp. and Cynodon dactylon were selected for the study. The investigation revealed that breeding of eleven anopheline species was associated with Eichhornia in different habitats followed by Hydrilla, algae and Cynodon (8 each), Ipomoea and Trapa (6), Lemna. and Nymphea (5), Azolla and Trachelomonas (4). An. subpictus was associated with all types of vegetation. An. annularis, An. nigerrimus and An. barbirostris were associated with nine plant species. An. culicifacies, the principal malaria vector was found breeding in association with seven aquatic plants and showed strong association with Cynodon, Hydrilla and algae. The species diversity in habitats infested with Hydrilla, algae and Cynodon seems to be most favourable for the breeding of An. culicifacies. It is suggested that thinning or removal of such vegetations at regular interval may help to reduce vector population and enhance the efficacy of biological control agents particularly the larvivorous fishes in such habitats. PMID:16509256

  10. Adaptive breeding habitat selection: Is it for the birds?

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Chalfoun, Anna D.; Schmidt, Kenneth A.

    2012-01-01

    The question of why animals choose particular habitats has important implications for understanding behavioral evolution and distribution of organisms in the wild and for delineating between habitats of different quality for conservation and management. Habitats chosen by animals can influence fitness outcomes via the costs (e.g., predation risk) and benefits (e.g., food availability) of habitat use. Habitat preferences should therefore be under selection to favor those that confer fitness advantages (Clark and Shutler 1999). Indeed, prevailing theory suggests that the habitat preferences of animals should be adaptive, such that fitness is higher in preferred habitats (Hildén 1965, Southwood 1977, Martin 1998). However, studies have often identified apparent mismatches between observed habitat preferences and fitness outcomes across a wide variety of taxa (Valladares and Lawton 1991, Mayhew 1997, Kolbe and Janzen 2002, Arlt and Pärt 2007, Mägi et al. 2009). Certainly, one limitation of studies may be that assessment of “fitness” is typically constrained to fitness surrogates such as nest success rather than lifetime reproductive success or classic Fisherian fitness (Endler 1986). Nevertheless, important habitat choices such as nest sites influence the probability that temporarily sedentary, dependent young are discovered by enemies such as predators and parasites. We therefore expect, on average, to see congruence between evolved habitat preferences and relevant components of fitness (e.g., nest success). Here, we (1) review the prevalence of apparent mismatches between avian breeding-habitat preferences and fitness outcomes using nest-site selection as a focus; (2) describe several potential mechanisms for such mismatches, including anthropogenic, methodological, and ecological–evolutionary; and (3) suggest a framework for understanding the contexts in which habitat preferences represent adaptive decisions, with a primary focus on ecological information

  11. Habitat use and home range of mallards breeding in Minnesota

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Gilmer, D.S.; Ball, I.J.; Cowardin, L.M.; Riechmann, J.

    1975-01-01

    Telemetry techniques were used to study habitat use and home range of 12 drake and 12 hen mallards (Anas platyrhynchos) in the forested region of north-central Minnesota during the 1968-72 breeding seasons. Circumneutral bogs and seasonal wetlands were the most frequently used communities; the lakeshore communities most used were sand-gravel, overhanging brush, and bog mat. Based on the availability of habitat, the highest preference shown was for the seasonal community and the least for the softwood swamp; however, all communities were used to some extent during the breeding season. Lakeshore was always among the habitats most frequently used by pairs. Twelve nest were found, nine in nonpermanent wetlands and three in upland forest sites. Mean home range was 210 ha for hens and 240 ha for drakes. The long axis of the home ranges of drakes and hens averaged 2.8 and 2.7 km, respectively. Hens had smaller home ranges during the laying period (mean = 70 ha) than during prenesting (mean = 135 ha).

  12. Breeding habitat associations and predicted distribution of an obligate tundra-breeding bird, Smith's Longspur

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Wild, Teri C.; Kendall, Steven J.; Guldager, Nikki; Powell, Abby N.

    2015-01-01

    Smith's Longspur (Calcarius pictus) is a species of conservation concern which breeds in Arctic habitats that are expected to be especially vulnerable to climate change. We used bird presence and habitat data from point-transect surveys conducted at 12 sites across the Brooks Range, Alaska, 2003–2009, to identify breeding areas, describe local habitat associations, and identify suitable habitat using a predictive model of Smith's Longspur distribution. Smith's Longspurs were observed at seven sites, where they were associated with a variety of sedge–shrub habitats composed primarily of mosses, sedges, tussocks, and dwarf shrubs; erect shrubs were common but sparse. Nonmetric multidimensional scaling ordination of ground cover revealed positive associations of Smith's Longspur presence with sedges and mosses and a negative association with high cover of shrubs. To model predicted distribution, we used boosted regression trees to relate landscape variables to occurrence. Our model predicted that Smith's Longspurs may occur in valleys and foothills of the northeastern and southeastern mountains and in upland plateaus of the western mountains, and farther west than currently documented, over a predicted area no larger than 15% of the Brooks Range. With climate change, shrubs are expected to grow larger and denser, while soil moisture and moss cover are predicted to decrease. These changes may reduce Smith's Longspur habitat quality and limit distribution in the Brooks Range to poorly drained lowlands and alpine plateaus where sedge–shrub tundra is likely to persist. Conversely, northward advance of shrubs into sedge tundra may create suitable habitat, thus supporting a northward longspur distribution shift.

  13. Habitat use by prairie raccoons during the waterfowl breeding season

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Fritzell, E.K.

    1978-01-01

    Mobility and habitat use of raccoons (Procyon lotor) in an intensively farmed area of the prairie pothole region were studied during the waterfowl breeding seasons (April-July) of 1973-75. Over 5700 locations of 30 raccoons were analyzed. Movement patterns varied with sex, age, and reproductive status. Adult males moved regularly throughout slightly overlapping ranges that averaged 2560 ha. Yearling males dispersed during May-June but their movements before and after dispersal were similar. Parous or pregnant females (mostly adults) had ranges averaging 806 ha but their movements were confined to smaller areas near the litter site after parturition. Nulliparous yearling females did not disperse and their ranges averaged 656 ha. Building sites, wooded areas, and wetlands were the only habitats preferentially used both at night and during the day. Eighty-one percent of all nocturnal locations and 94 percent of all diurnal locations were in these 3 habitats which comprised only 10 percent of the study area. Use of building sites decreased concomitantly with increased use of wetlands. Upland habitats were seldom used.

  14. Slipping through the Cracks: Rubber Plantation Is Unsuitable Breeding Habitat for Frogs in Xishuangbanna, China

    PubMed Central

    Behm, Jocelyn E.; Yang, Xiaodong; Chen, Jin

    2013-01-01

    Conversion of tropical forests into agriculture may present a serious risk to amphibian diversity if amphibians are not able to use agricultural areas as habitat. Recently, in Xishuangbanna Prefecture, Yunnan Province – a hotspot of frog diversity within China – two-thirds of the native tropical rainforests have been converted into rubber plantation agriculture. We conducted surveys and experiments to quantify habitat use for breeding and non-breeding life history activities of the native frog species in rainforest, rubber plantation and other human impacted sites. Rubber plantation sites had the lowest species richness in our non-breeding habitat surveys and no species used rubber plantation sites as breeding habitat. The absence of breeding was likely not due to intrinsic properties of the rubber plantation pools, as our experiments indicated that rubber plantation pools were suitable for tadpole growth and development. Rather, the absence of breeding in the rubber plantation was likely due to a misalignment of breeding and non-breeding habitat preferences. Analyses of our breeding surveys showed that percent canopy cover over pools was the strongest environmental variable influencing breeding site selection, with species exhibiting preferences for pools under both high and low canopy cover. Although rubber plantation pools had high canopy cover, the only species that bred in high canopy cover sites used the rainforest for both non-breeding and breeding activities, completing their entire life cycle in the rainforest. Conversely, the species that did use the rubber plantation for non-breeding habitat preferred to breed in low canopy sites, also avoiding breeding in the rubber plantation. Rubber plantations are likely an intermediate habitat type that ‘slips through the cracks’ of species habitat preferences and is thus avoided for breeding. In summary, unlike the rainforests they replaced, rubber plantations alone may not be able to support frog

  15. Sugarcane Improvement Through Breeding and Biotechnology

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The advancements in sugarcane breeding and the improvement of sugarcane through biotechnology have been reviewed by a team of leading sugarcane specialists from around the world. Topics covered in the breeding section include the evolution and origin of sugarcane, early history of conventional sugar...

  16. Habitat Suitability Index Models: Black-Bellied Whistling-Duck (Breeding)

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    McKenzie, Paul M.; Zwank, Phillip J.

    1988-01-01

    A review and synthesis of existing information were used to develop a model for evaluating the quality of habitat for breeding black-bellied whistling-ducks. The model is scaled to produce an index between 0.0 (unsuitable habitat) to 1.0 (optimal habitat). Habitat suitability index models are designed to be used with Habitat Evaluation Procedures previously developed by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. Guidelines for model application and techniques for measuring model variable are provided.

  17. Effect of Group-Selection Opening Size on Breeding Bird Habitat Use in a Bottomland Forest

    SciTech Connect

    Moorman, C.E.; D.C. Guynn, Jr.

    2001-12-01

    Research on the effects of creating group-selection openings of various sizes on breeding birds habitat use in a bottomland hardwood forest of the Upper Coastal Plain of South Carolina. Creation of 0.5-ha group selection openings in southern bottomland forests should provide breeding habitat for some field-edge species in gaps and habitat for forest-interior species and canopy-dwelling forest-edge species between gaps provided that enough mature forest is made available.

  18. Breeding Guild Determines Frog Distributions in Response to Edge Effects and Habitat Conversion in the Brazil's Atlantic Forest.

    PubMed

    Ferreira, Rodrigo B; Beard, Karen H; Crump, Martha L

    2016-01-01

    Understanding the response of species with differing life-history traits to habitat edges and habitat conversion helps predict their likelihood of persistence across changing landscape. In Brazil's Atlantic Forest, we evaluated frog richness and abundance by breeding guild at four distances from the edge of a reserve: i) 200 m inside the forest, ii) 50 m inside the forest, iii) at the forest edge, and iv) 50 m inside three different converted habitats (coffee plantation, non-native Eucalyptus plantation, and abandoned pastures, hereafter matrix types). By sampling a dry and a wet season, we recorded 622 individual frogs representing 29 species, of which three were undescribed. Breeding guild (i.e. bromeliad, leaf-litter, and water-body breeders) was the most important variable explaining frog distributions in relation to edge effects and matrix types. Leaf-litter and bromeliad breeders decreased in richness and abundance from the forest interior toward the matrix habitats. Water-body breeders increased in richness toward the matrix and remained relatively stable in abundance across distances. Number of large trees (i.e. DBH > 15 cm) and bromeliads best explained frog richness and abundance across distances. Twenty species found in the interior of the forest were not found in any matrix habitat. Richness and abundance across breeding guilds were higher in the rainy season but frog distributions were similar across the four distances in the two seasons. Across matrix types, leaf-litter species primarily used Eucalyptus plantations, whereas water-body species primarily used coffee plantations. Bromeliad breeders were not found inside any matrix habitat. Our study highlights the importance of primary forest for bromeliad and leaf-litter breeders. We propose that water-body breeders use edge and matrix habitats to reach breeding habitats along the valleys. Including life-history characteristics, such as breeding guild, can improve predictions of frog distributions in

  19. The ecology of vector snail habitats and mosquito breeding-places

    PubMed Central

    Muirhead-Thomson, R. C.

    1958-01-01

    The ecology of freshwater snails—in particular those which act as intermediate hosts of bilharziasis—is reviewed in the light of the much more extensive knowledge available on the breeding-places of anopheline mosquitos. Experimental ecological methods are recommended for the field and laboratory investigation of a number of common problems involved in the study of snail habitats and mosquito breeding-places. Among the environmental factors discussed are temperature, oxygen concentration, water movement, pollution and salinity. Sampling methods for estimating populations of both snails and mosquito larvae are also described. An attempt is made to show how malacologists and entomologists alike would benefit from improved facilities for keeping abreast of general developments in the wider field of freshwater ecology. PMID:13596888

  20. Habitat Effects on the Breeding Performance of Three Forest-Dwelling Hawks.

    PubMed

    Björklund, Heidi; Valkama, Jari; Tomppo, Erkki; Laaksonen, Toni

    2015-01-01

    Habitat loss causes population declines, but the mechanisms are rarely known. In the European Boreal Zone, loss of old forest due to intensive forestry is suspected to cause declines in forest-dwelling raptors by reducing their breeding performance. We studied the boreal breeding habitat and habitat-associated breeding performance of the northern goshawk (Accipiter gentilis), common buzzard (Buteo buteo) and European honey buzzard (Pernis apivorus). We combined long-term Finnish bird-of-prey data with multi-source national forest inventory data at various distances (100-4000 m) around the hawk nests. We found that breeding success of the goshawk was best explained by the habitat within a 2000-m radius around the nests; breeding was more successful with increasing proportions of old spruce forest and water, and decreasing proportions of young thinning forest. None of the habitat variables affected significantly the breeding success of the common buzzard or the honey buzzard, or the brood size of any of the species. The amount of old spruce forest decreased both around goshawk and common buzzard nests and throughout southern Finland in 1992-2010. In contrast, the area of young forest increased in southern Finland but not around hawk nests. We emphasize the importance of studying habitats at several spatial and temporal scales to determine the relevant species-specific scale and to detect environmental changes. Further effort is needed to reconcile the socioeconomic and ecological functions of forests and habitat requirements of old forest specialists. PMID:26422684

  1. Habitat Effects on the Breeding Performance of Three Forest-Dwelling Hawks

    PubMed Central

    Björklund, Heidi; Valkama, Jari; Tomppo, Erkki; Laaksonen, Toni

    2015-01-01

    Habitat loss causes population declines, but the mechanisms are rarely known. In the European Boreal Zone, loss of old forest due to intensive forestry is suspected to cause declines in forest-dwelling raptors by reducing their breeding performance. We studied the boreal breeding habitat and habitat-associated breeding performance of the northern goshawk (Accipiter gentilis), common buzzard (Buteo buteo) and European honey buzzard (Pernis apivorus). We combined long-term Finnish bird-of-prey data with multi-source national forest inventory data at various distances (100–4000 m) around the hawk nests. We found that breeding success of the goshawk was best explained by the habitat within a 2000-m radius around the nests; breeding was more successful with increasing proportions of old spruce forest and water, and decreasing proportions of young thinning forest. None of the habitat variables affected significantly the breeding success of the common buzzard or the honey buzzard, or the brood size of any of the species. The amount of old spruce forest decreased both around goshawk and common buzzard nests and throughout southern Finland in 1992–2010. In contrast, the area of young forest increased in southern Finland but not around hawk nests. We emphasize the importance of studying habitats at several spatial and temporal scales to determine the relevant species-specific scale and to detect environmental changes. Further effort is needed to reconcile the socioeconomic and ecological functions of forests and habitat requirements of old forest specialists. PMID:26422684

  2. Habitat selection and movements of Piping Plover broods suggest a tradeoff between breeding stages

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Wiltermuth, Mark T.; Anteau, Michael J.; Sherfy, Mark H.; Pearse, Aaron T.

    2015-01-01

    In precocial birds, adults select breeding areas using cues associated with habitat characteristics that are favorable for nesting success and chick survival, but there may be tradeoffs in habitat selection between these breeding stages. Here we describe habitat selection and intra-territory movements of 53 Piping Plover (Charadrius melodus) broods (320 observations) during the 2007–2008 breeding seasons on mainland- and island-shoreline habitats at Lake Sakakawea, North Dakota, USA. We used remotely sensed habitat characteristics to separately examine habitat selection and movements at two spatiotemporal scales to account for potential confounding effects of nest-site selection on brood-rearing habitat used. The scales used were (1) the entire brood-rearing period within available brood-rearing areas and (2) 2-day observation intervals within age-specific discrete habitat selection choice sets. Analyses at both scales indicated that broods selected areas which were non-vegetated, moderately level, and nearer to the shoreline. Rate of brood movement increased with age up to 5 days, then stabilized; broods that hatched >50 m away from the shoreline moved toward the shoreline. Brood movements were greater when they were in vegetated areas, when the brood-rearing area was of greater topographic complexity, and when broods aged 6–25 days were further away from the shoreline. Using inferences from our results and those of previously published work, we postulate how a potential tradeoff in habitat selection between nesting and brood-rearing can contribute to an ecological trap in a novel habitat. This work, in the context of published works, suggests that plover breeding habitat is a complex of both nesting and brood-rearing habitats and provides a basis for making remotely sensed abundance estimates of suitable breeding habitat for Piping Plovers.

  3. Habitat Suitability Index Models: Bald Eagle (Breeding Season)

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Peterson, Allen

    1986-01-01

    A review and synthesis of existing information were used to develop a Habitat Suitability Index (HSI) model for the bald eagle (Haliaeetus leucocephalus). The model consolidates habitat use information into a framework appropriate for field application, and is scaled to produce an index between 0.0 (unsuitable habitat) to 1.0 (optimum habitat). HSI models are designed to be used with Habitat Evaluation Procedures previously developed by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.

  4. Habitat Suitability Index Models: Blue-Winged Teal (Breeding)

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Sousa, Patrick J.

    1985-01-01

    A review and synthesis of existing information were used to develop a Habitat Suitability Index (HSI) model for the blue-winged teal (Anas discors). The model consolidates habitat use information into a framework appropriate for field application, and is scaled to produce an index between 0.0 (unsuitable habitat) to 1.0 (optimum habitat). HSI models are designed to be used with Habitat Evaluation Procedures previously developed by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.

  5. Improving the breed - Shuttle development

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Brand, V.

    1985-01-01

    An evaluation is made of design improvements that have been made to the Space Shuttle System, and the performance gains obtained; the most important of these stem from efforts to refine procedures for rendezvous with stricken satellites, in order to repair them. Ascent performance has been improved through Space Shuttle Main Engine thrust improvements and external tank weight reductions. On-orbit living convenience has been enhanced by the addition of small sleeping compartments and a galley. Greater flexibility has been obtained for reentry and landing maneuvers. Attention is given to problems which continue to be posed by the thermal protection tiles.

  6. Non-breeding season habitat quality mediates the strength of density-dependence for a migratory bird.

    PubMed

    Marra, Peter P; Studds, Colin E; Wilson, Scott; Sillett, T Scott; Sherry, Thomas W; Holmes, Richard T

    2015-07-22

    Our understanding of when natural populations are regulated during their annual cycle is limited, particularly for migratory species. This information is needed for parametrizing models that can inform management and conservation. Here, we use 14 years of data on colour-marked birds to investigate how conspecific density and habitat quality during the tropical non-breeding period interact to affect body condition and apparent annual survival of a long-distance migratory songbird, the American redstart (Setophagaruticilla). Body condition and survival of birds in high-quality mangrove habitat declined as density increased. By contrast, body condition improved and survival did not vary as density increased in adjacent, lower quality scrub habitat, although mean condition and survival were almost always lower than in mangrove. High rainfall enhanced body condition in scrub but not in mangrove, suggesting factors such as food availability outweighed consequences of crowding in lower quality habitat. Thus, survival of overwintering redstarts in mangrove habitat, disproportionately males,appears to be regulated by a crowding mechanism based on density-dependent resource competition. Survival of individuals in scrub, mostly females, appears to be limited by density-independent environmental factors but not regulated by crowding. The contrasting effects of density and food limitation on individuals overwintering in adjacent habitats illustrate the complexity of processes operating during the non-breeding period for migratory animals, and emphasize the need for long-term studies of animals in multiple habitats and throughout their annual cycles. PMID:26136445

  7. Non-breeding season habitat quality mediates the strength of density-dependence for a migratory bird

    PubMed Central

    Marra, Peter P.; Studds, Colin E.; Wilson, Scott; Sillett, T. Scott; Sherry, Thomas W.; Holmes, Richard T.

    2015-01-01

    Our understanding of when natural populations are regulated during their annual cycle is limited, particularly for migratory species. This information is needed for parametrizing models that can inform management and conservation. Here, we use 14 years of data on colour-marked birds to investigate how conspecific density and habitat quality during the tropical non-breeding period interact to affect body condition and apparent annual survival of a long-distance migratory songbird, the American redstart (Setophaga ruticilla). Body condition and survival of birds in high-quality mangrove habitat declined as density increased. By contrast, body condition improved and survival did not vary as density increased in adjacent, lower quality scrub habitat, although mean condition and survival were almost always lower than in mangrove. High rainfall enhanced body condition in scrub but not in mangrove, suggesting factors such as food availability outweighed consequences of crowding in lower quality habitat. Thus, survival of overwintering redstarts in mangrove habitat, disproportionately males, appears to be regulated by a crowding mechanism based on density-dependent resource competition. Survival of individuals in scrub, mostly females, appears to be limited by density-independent environmental factors but not regulated by crowding. The contrasting effects of density and food limitation on individuals overwintering in adjacent habitats illustrate the complexity of processes operating during the non-breeding period for migratory animals, and emphasize the need for long-term studies of animals in multiple habitats and throughout their annual cycles. PMID:26136445

  8. Development of an expert system for assessing trumpeter swan breeding habitat in the Northern Rocky Mountains.

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Sojda, Richard S.; Cornely, John E.; Howe, Adele E.

    2002-01-01

    A decision support system for the management of the Rocky Mountain Population of Trumpeter Swans (Cygnus buccinators) is being developed. As part of this, three expert systems are also in development: one for assessing the quality of Trumpeter Swan breeding habitat; one for making water level recommendations in montane, palustrine wetlands; and one for assessing the contribution a particular site can make towards meeting objectives from as flyway perspective. The focus of this paper is the development of the breeding habitat expert system, which currently consists of 157 rules. Out purpose is to provide decision support for issues that appear to be beyond the capability of a single persons to conceptualize and solve. We propose that by involving multiple experts in the development and use of the systems, management will be significantly improved. The knowledge base for the expert system has been developed using standard knowledge engineering techniques with a small team of ecological experts. Knowledge was then coded using production rules organized in decision trees using a commercial expert system development shell. The final system has been deployed on the world wide web.

  9. Tropical winter habitat limits reproductive success on the temperate breeding grounds in a migratory bird.

    PubMed Central

    Norris, D. Ryan; Marra, Peter P.; Kyser, T. Kurt; Sherry, Thomas W.; Ratcliffe, Laurene M.

    2004-01-01

    Identifying the factors that control population dynamics in migratory animals has been constrained by our inability to track individuals throughout the annual cycle. Using stable carbon isotopes, we show that the reproductive success of a long-distance migratory bird is influenced by the quality of habitat located thousands of kilometres away on tropical wintering grounds. For male American redstarts (Setophaga ruticilla), winter habitat quality influenced arrival date on the breeding grounds, which in turn affected key variables associated with reproduction, including the number of young fledged. Based on a winter-habitat model, females occupying high-quality winter habitat were predicted to produce more than two additional young and to fledge offspring up to a month earlier compared with females wintering in poor-quality habitat. Differences of this magnitude are highly important considering redstarts are single brooded, lay clutches of only three to five eggs and spend only two-and-a-half months on the breeding grounds. Results from this study indicate the importance of understanding how periods of the annual cycle interact for migratory animals. Continued loss of tropical wintering habitat could have negative effects on migratory populations in the following breeding season, minimizing density-dependent effects on the breeding grounds and leading to further population declines. If conservation efforts are to be successful, strategies must incorporate measures to protect all the habitats used during the entire annual cycle of migratory animals. PMID:15002772

  10. Breeding population density and habitat use of Swainson's warblers in a Georgia floodplain forest

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Wright, E.A.

    2002-01-01

    I examined density and habitat use of a Swainson's Warbler (Limnothlypis swainsonii) breeding population in Georgia. This songbird species is inadequately monitored, and may be declining due to anthropogenic alteration of floodplain forest breeding habitats. I used distance sampling methods to estimate density, finding 9.4 singing males/ha (CV = 0.298). Individuals were encountered too infrequently to produce a Iow-variance estimate, and distance sampling thus may be impracticable for monitoring this relatively rare species. I developed a set of multivariate habitat models using binary logistic regression techniques, based on measurement of 22 variables in 56 plots occupied by Swainson's Warblers and 110 unoccupied plots. Occupied areas were characterized by high stem density of cane (Arundinaria gigantea) and other shrub layer vegetation, and presence of abundant and accessible leaf litter. I recommend two habitat models, which correctly classified 87-89% of plots in cross-validation runs, for potential use in habitat assessment at other locations.

  11. Breeding Guild Determines Frog Distributions in Response to Edge Effects and Habitat Conversion in the Brazil’s Atlantic Forest

    PubMed Central

    Ferreira, Rodrigo B.; Beard, Karen H.; Crump, Martha L.

    2016-01-01

    Understanding the response of species with differing life-history traits to habitat edges and habitat conversion helps predict their likelihood of persistence across changing landscape. In Brazil’s Atlantic Forest, we evaluated frog richness and abundance by breeding guild at four distances from the edge of a reserve: i) 200 m inside the forest, ii) 50 m inside the forest, iii) at the forest edge, and iv) 50 m inside three different converted habitats (coffee plantation, non-native Eucalyptus plantation, and abandoned pastures, hereafter matrix types). By sampling a dry and a wet season, we recorded 622 individual frogs representing 29 species, of which three were undescribed. Breeding guild (i.e. bromeliad, leaf-litter, and water-body breeders) was the most important variable explaining frog distributions in relation to edge effects and matrix types. Leaf-litter and bromeliad breeders decreased in richness and abundance from the forest interior toward the matrix habitats. Water-body breeders increased in richness toward the matrix and remained relatively stable in abundance across distances. Number of large trees (i.e. DBH > 15 cm) and bromeliads best explained frog richness and abundance across distances. Twenty species found in the interior of the forest were not found in any matrix habitat. Richness and abundance across breeding guilds were higher in the rainy season but frog distributions were similar across the four distances in the two seasons. Across matrix types, leaf-litter species primarily used Eucalyptus plantations, whereas water-body species primarily used coffee plantations. Bromeliad breeders were not found inside any matrix habitat. Our study highlights the importance of primary forest for bromeliad and leaf-litter breeders. We propose that water-body breeders use edge and matrix habitats to reach breeding habitats along the valleys. Including life-history characteristics, such as breeding guild, can improve predictions of frog distributions in

  12. Breeding biology and habitat use of black ducks

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Owen, R.; Longcore, J.; Ringelman, J.; Reinecke, K.; Hendrix, K.

    1989-01-01

    Forested wetlands are Important habitats for black ducks nesting in the Northeast. Invertebrates, with their high protein content, are primary foods of females during egg laying and for rapidly growing ducklings. Beaver-created and modified wetlands provide excellent habitat for feeding as well as protective cover. As these wetlands age, their quality declines after 7-10 years, and waterfowl use diminishes. Wetland availability and quality should be considered when managing beaver.

  13. Breeding bird populations and habitat associations within the Savannah River Site (SRS).

    SciTech Connect

    Gauthreaux, Sidney, A.; Steven J. Wagner.

    2005-06-29

    Gauthreaux, Sidney, A., and Steven J. Wagner. 2005. Breeding bird populations and habitat associations within the Savannah River Site (SRS). Final Report. USDA Forest Service, Savannah River, Aiken, SC. 48 pp. Abstract: During the 1970's and 1980's a dramatic decline occurred in the populations of Neotropical migratory birds, species that breed in North America and winter south of the border in Central and South America and in the Caribbean. In 1991 an international initiative was mounted by U. S. governmental land management agencies, nongovernmental conservation agencies, and the academic and lay ornithological communities to understand the decline of Neotropical migratory birds in the Americas. In cooperation with the USDA Forest Service - Savannah River (FS - SR) we began 1992 a project directed to monitoring population densities of breeding birds using the Breeding Bird Census (BBC) methodology in selected habitats within the Savannah River Site SRS. In addition we related point count data on the occurrence of breeding Neotropical migrants and other bird species to the habitat data gathered by the Forest Inventory and Analysis (FIA) program of the USDA Forest Service and data on habitat treatments within forest stands.

  14. Habitat and sex differences in physiological condition of breeding Southwestern Willow Flycatchers (Empidonax traillii extimus)

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Owen, J.C.; Sogge, M.K.; Kern, M.D.

    2005-01-01

    The Southwestern Willow Flycatcher (Empidonax traillii extimus; hereafter "flycatcher") is a federally listed endangered species that breeds in densely vegetated riparian habitats dominated by native and exotic plants, including introduced monotypic saltcedar (Tamarix ramosissima). Some workers have theorized that saltcedar is unsuitable habitat for the flycatcher, primarily because it generally supports a smaller and less diverse invertebrate community (the flycatcher's food base) than native habitats (e.g. Salix spp.). However, differences in insect communities between native and saltcedar habitats are not proof that saltcedar habitats are inferior. The only way to evaluate whether the habitats differ in dietary or energetic quality is to document actual food limitation or its manifestations. Measurements of an individual's body condition and metabolic state can serve as indicators of environmental stressors, such as food limitation and environmental extremes. We captured 130 flycatchers breeding in native and saltcedar habitats in Arizona and New Mexico and measured 12 variables of physiological condition. These variables included body mass, fat level, body condition index, hematocrit, plasma triglycerides, plasma free fatty acids and glycerol, plasma glucose and beta-hydroxybutyrate, plasma uric acid, total leukocyte count, and heterophil-to-lymphocyte ratio. We found substantial sex-based differences in the condition of male and female flycatchers. Ten of the 12 measures of physiological condition differed significantly between the sexes. In all cases where male and female condition differed (except mass), the differences suggest that males were in poorer condition than females. We found few habitat-based differences in flycatcher condition. Only 3 of the 12 physiological condition indices differed significantly between habitats. Our data show that, at least in some parts of the flycatcher's range, there is no evidence that flycatchers breeding in saltcedar

  15. Distribution and habitat associations of breeding secretive marsh birds in Louisiana's Mississippi alluvial valley

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Valente, J.J.; King, S.L.; Wilson, R.R.

    2011-01-01

    Populations of many North American secretive marsh birds (SMBs) have declined in recent decades, partially as a function of wetland loss. Protecting and restoring appropriate habitat for these species is contingent upon understanding the habitat features they utilize. We investigated breeding distributions of SMBs in northeast Louisiana at 118 wetlands in 2007 and 2008 and modeled species occupancy (??) as a function of habitat variables measured at local (???100 m) and landscape (???1 km) scales. Common Moorhens (Gallinula chloropus), Least Bitterns (Ixobrychus exilis), and Purple Gallinules (Porphyrula martinica) were the most commonly detected species, whereas breeding King Rails (Rallus elegans) and American Coots (Fulica americana) were rare. Local habitat features consistently played a greater role in predicting ?? than landscape features for the three most common species. The proportion of local wetland area dominated by robust emergent vegetation (i.e., Typha spp. and Zizaniopsis miliacea) positively influenced ?? for all species, while other wetland vegetation types tended to have a minimal or negative effect. Our results suggest the habitat characteristics preferred by breeding SMBs differ from those used by migrating shorebirds and wintering waterfowl and management and restoration objectives for those species may be inadequate for enhancing SMB habitat. ?? 2011 US Government.

  16. Sex-Specific Habitat Utilization and Differential Breeding Investments in Christmas Island Frigatebirds throughout the Breeding Cycle

    PubMed Central

    Hennicke, Janos C.; James, David J.; Weimerskirch, Henri

    2015-01-01

    In seabirds, equal bi-parental care is the rule, as it is considered crucial for raising chicks successfully because seabirds forage in an environment with unpredictable and highly variable food supply. Frigatebirds forage in poor tropical waters, yet males reduce and even stop parental care soon after chick brooding, leaving the female to provision the chick alone for an extended fledging period. Using bird-borne tracking devices, male and female Christmas Island Frigatebirds (Fregata andrewsi) were investigated during the brooding, late chick rearing and post-fledging period to examine whether sexes exhibit foraging strategies that may be linked to differential breeding investments. During brooding, males and females showed similar foraging behaviour under average marine productivity of oceanic waters close to the colony, but males shifted to more distant and more productive habitats when conditions deteriorated to continue with reduced chick provisioning. During the late chick rearing period, females progressively increased their foraging range to the more distant but productive marine areas that only males had visited during brooding. Birds spent the non-breeding period roosting in highly productive waters of the Sunda Shelf. The sex-specific utilisation of three different foraging habitats with different primary productivity (oceanic, coastal, and shelf areas) allowed for temporal and spatial segregation in the exploitation of favourable habitats which seems to enable each sex to optimise its foraging profitability. In addition, post-fledging foraging movements of females suggest a biennial breeding cycle, while limited information on males suggests the possibility of an annual breeding cycle. PMID:26098941

  17. The Effects of Habitat Type and Volcanic Eruptions on the Breeding Demography of Icelandic Whimbrels Numenius phaeopus.

    PubMed

    Katrínardóttir, Borgný; Alves, José A; Sigurjónsdóttir, Hrefna; Hersteinsson, Páll; Gunnarsson, Tómas G

    2015-01-01

    Distinct preference of species for habitats is most often driven by long term differences in demographic rates between habitats. Estimating variation in those rates is key for developing successful conservation strategies. Stochastic events can interact with underlying variation in habitat quality in regulating demography but the opportunities to explore such interactions are rare. Whimbrels in Iceland show a strong preference for sparsely vegetated riverplains. Such habitats in Iceland face various threats, e.g., climate change, river regulation and spread of alien plant species. In this study we compared demographic parameters of breeding Whimbrels between riverplains and other habitats before, during and after volcanic eruption events to estimate the importance of the habitats for the species and the effect of ash deposit on breeding success. We found that an estimated minimum of 23% of the Icelandic population of Whimbrels and c. 10% of the world population of the species breed in riverplain habitats in Iceland. Whimbrels bred consistently at much higher densities in riverplain habitats than in other habitats and riverplains also had higher densities of pairs with fledglings although the proportion of successful breeders was similar between habitats. Predation by livestock may have had a considerable negative effect on breeding success on our study sites. Breeding was negatively affected by the volcanic activity, probably through the effects of ash on the invertebrate food supply, with breeding success being gradually worse closer to the eruption. Breeding success was equally affected by volcanism across habitats which differed in underlying habitat quality. This study gives an example of how populations can be regulated by factors which operate at different spatial scales, such as local variation in habitat quality and stochastic events which impact larger areas. PMID:26161860

  18. The Effects of Habitat Type and Volcanic Eruptions on the Breeding Demography of Icelandic Whimbrels Numenius phaeopus

    PubMed Central

    Katrínardóttir, Borgný; Alves, José A.; Sigurjónsdóttir, Hrefna; Gunnarsson, Tómas G.

    2015-01-01

    Distinct preference of species for habitats is most often driven by long term differences in demographic rates between habitats. Estimating variation in those rates is key for developing successful conservation strategies. Stochastic events can interact with underlying variation in habitat quality in regulating demography but the opportunities to explore such interactions are rare. Whimbrels in Iceland show a strong preference for sparsely vegetated riverplains. Such habitats in Iceland face various threats, e.g., climate change, river regulation and spread of alien plant species. In this study we compared demographic parameters of breeding Whimbrels between riverplains and other habitats before, during and after volcanic eruption events to estimate the importance of the habitats for the species and the effect of ash deposit on breeding success. We found that an estimated minimum of 23% of the Icelandic population of Whimbrels and c. 10% of the world population of the species breed in riverplain habitats in Iceland. Whimbrels bred consistently at much higher densities in riverplain habitats than in other habitats and riverplains also had higher densities of pairs with fledglings although the proportion of successful breeders was similar between habitats. Predation by livestock may have had a considerable negative effect on breeding success on our study sites. Breeding was negatively affected by the volcanic activity, probably through the effects of ash on the invertebrate food supply, with breeding success being gradually worse closer to the eruption. Breeding success was equally affected by volcanism across habitats which differed in underlying habitat quality. This study gives an example of how populations can be regulated by factors which operate at different spatial scales, such as local variation in habitat quality and stochastic events which impact larger areas. PMID:26161860

  19. Applying breeding objectives to dairy cattle improvement.

    PubMed

    Dekkers, J C; Gibson, J P

    1998-09-01

    Otherwise well-researched definitions of breeding objectives and selection criteria may never be used in practice if those definitions do not take into account the perceptions and wishes of the breeders for whom they are designed. Finding selection criteria that are widely accepted and implemented is a daunting task that requires considerable time and full interaction between the scientists and the industry. We review various aspects of this process and, in particular, how scientific principles can be used to ensure that the outcome best meets both the perceptions and needs of the users while remaining as close as possible to the technical economic optimum. Alternative methods of presenting and delivering selection indexes, such as index expression, index formulation, focus on response to selection rather than on index weights, construction of component indexes, and the use of direct accounting for costs of constraints rather than rescaling methods can all help in improving acceptance of an index. Development and implementation of selection criteria also involve consideration of the selective mating decisions that form an integral part of selection decisions in the field. The technical basis of factors that foster emphasis on individual mating decisions in the field are discussed in relation to formulation of the breeding goal and selection index and in relation to nonlinear economic and genetic parameters. Strategies that focus on use of a linear index for the selection of sires and dams followed by selective mating of selected parents have the greatest potential for implementation in the industry. We focus on examples taken from the Canadian dairy industry, but principles apply generally. PMID:9777509

  20. Characterization of breeding habitats for black and surf scoters in the eastern boreal forest and subarctic regions of Canada

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Perry, M.C.; Kidwell, D.M.; Wells, A.M.; Lohnes, E.J.R.; Osenton, P.C.; Altmann, S.H.

    2006-01-01

    We analyzed characteristics of wetland habitats used by breeding black scoters (Melanitta nigra) and surf scoters (M. perspicillata) in the eastern boreal forest and subarctic regions of Canada based on satellite telemetry data collected in the spring and summer. During 2002 and 2004, nine black scoters (four males, five females) were tracked to breeding areas in Quebec, Manitoba, and Northwest Territories. In addition, in 2001?04, seven surf scoters (three males, four females) were tracked to breeding areas in Labrador, Quebec, Northwest Territories, and Nunavut. Based on satellite telemetry data, locations of black and surf scoters in breeding areas were not significantly different in regard to latitude and longitude. Presumed breeding areas were manually plotted on topographic maps and percent cover type and water were estimated. Breeding habitat of black scoters was significantly different than that for surf scoters, with black scoters mainly using open (tundra) areas (44%) and surf scoters using mainly forest areas (66%). Surf scoters presumed breeding areas were at significantly higher elevations than areas used by black scoters. Some breeding areas were associated with islands, but the role of islands for breeding areas is equivocal. These results aid in the identification of potentially critical breeding areas and provide a baseline classification of breeding habitats used by these two species.

  1. Greater shrub dominance alters breeding habitat and food resources for migratory songbirds in Alaskan arctic tundra.

    PubMed

    Boelman, Natalie T; Gough, Laura; Wingfield, John; Goetz, Scott; Asmus, Ashley; Chmura, Helen E; Krause, Jesse S; Perez, Jonathan H; Sweet, Shannan K; Guay, Kevin C

    2015-04-01

    Climate warming is affecting the Arctic in multiple ways, including via increased dominance of deciduous shrubs. Although many studies have focused on how this vegetation shift is altering nutrient cycling and energy balance, few have explicitly considered effects on tundra fauna, such as the millions of migratory songbirds that breed in northern regions every year. To understand how increasing deciduous shrub dominance may alter breeding songbird habitat, we quantified vegetation and arthropod community characteristics in both graminoid and shrub dominated tundra. We combined measurements of preferred nest site characteristics for Lapland longspurs (Calcarius lapponicus) and Gambel's White-crowned sparrows (Zonotrichia leucophrys gambelii) with modeled predictions for the distribution of plant community types in the Alaskan arctic foothills region for the year 2050. Lapland longspur nests were found in sedge-dominated tussock tundra where shrub height does not exceed 20 cm, whereas White-crowned sparrows nested only under shrubs between 20 cm and 1 m in height, with no preference for shrub species. Shrub canopies had higher canopy-dwelling arthropod availability (i.e. small flies and spiders) but lower ground-dwelling arthropod availability (i.e. large spiders and beetles). Since flies are the birds' preferred prey, increasing shrubs may result in a net enhancement in preferred prey availability. Acknowledging the coarse resolution of existing tundra vegetation models, we predict that by 2050 there will be a northward shift in current White-crowned sparrow habitat range and a 20-60% increase in their preferred habitat extent, while Lapland longspur habitat extent will be equivalently reduced. Our findings can be used to make first approximations of future habitat change for species with similar nesting requirements. However, we contend that as exemplified by this study's findings, existing tundra modeling tools cannot yet simulate the fine-scale habitat

  2. Challenges and opportunities in genetic improvement of local livestock breeds

    PubMed Central

    Biscarini, Filippo; Nicolazzi, Ezequiel L.; Stella, Alessandra; Boettcher, Paul J.; Gandini, Gustavo

    2015-01-01

    Sufficient genetic variation in livestock populations is necessary both for adaptation to future changes in climate and consumer demand, and for continual genetic improvement of economically important traits. Unfortunately, the current trend is for reduced genetic variation, both within and across breeds. The latter occurs primarily through the loss of small, local breeds. Inferior production is a key driver for loss of small breeds, as they are replaced by high-output international transboundary breeds. Selection to improve productivity of small local breeds is therefore critical for their long term survival. The objective of this paper is to review the technology options available for the genetic improvement of small local breeds and discuss their feasibility. Most technologies have been developed for the high-input breeds and consequently are more favorably applied in that context. Nevertheless, their application in local breeds is not precluded and can yield significant benefits, especially when multiple technologies are applied in close collaboration with farmers and breeders. Breeding strategies that require cooperation and centralized decision-making, such as optimal contribution selection, may in fact be more easily implemented in small breeds. PMID:25763010

  3. Sergentomyia spp.: breeding sites in vertisols and peri-domestic habitats in North West Ethiopia.

    PubMed

    Moncaz, Aviad; Kirstein, Oscar; Gebresellassie, Araya; Lemma, Wossenseged; Gebre-Michael, Teshome; Balkew, Meshesha; Belay, Shewaye; Hailu, Asrat; Warburg, Alon

    2014-09-01

    Sand flies belonging to the genus Sergentomyia Franca & Parrot, 1920, are hematophagous insects feeding mostly on reptiles and birds, but some species feed also on mammals including humans. Sergentomyia spp. frequently comprise the vast majority of sand flies trapped along with Phlebotomus spp., the vectors of mammalian leishmaniasis. Within the framework of a project on the ecology and transmission of visceral leishmaniasis in Ethiopia, putative breeding sites of phlebotomine sand flies were studied. Large horizontal sticky traps (LHSTs) covered with sand fly-proof mesh were deployed over cracked vertisol and related habitats for up to 3 nights, and emerging sand flies were collected daily. Emergence traps (ETs) were also adapted to sample other putative breeding sites including tree trunks, termite mounds, rock piles and vertical river banks. Productive breeding sites were identified in the trunks and roots systems of trees, vertisol fields, cracks and burrows in vertisol dry river banks and termite mounds. Emerging flies were also collected form a stone wall and a rock pile situated inside a village. Significantly more Sergentomyia spp. were trapped in vertisols by ETs deployed over root system than in open fields. Similarly, more sand flies emerged from cracks in the vertisol in fallow Sorghum than in fallow sesame fields. Productive breeding sites were characterized by stable micro-climatic conditions. Species composition of emerging sand flies varied with habitat, season and geographical location. PMID:24841132

  4. Landscape effects on mallard habitat selection at multiple spatial scales during the non-breeding period

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Beatty, William S.; Webb, Elisabeth B.; Kesler, Dylan C.; Raedeke, Andrew H.; Naylor, Luke W.; Humburg, Dale D.

    2014-01-01

    Previous studies that evaluated effects of landscape-scale habitat heterogeneity on migratory waterbird distributions were spatially limited and temporally restricted to one major life-history phase. However, effects of landscape-scale habitat heterogeneity on long-distance migratory waterbirds can be studied across the annual cycle using new technologies, including global positioning system satellite transmitters. We used Bayesian discrete choice models to examine the influence of local habitats and landscape composition on habitat selection by a generalist dabbling duck, the mallard (Anas platyrhynchos), in the midcontinent of North America during the non-breeding period. Using a previously published empirical movement metric, we separated the non-breeding period into three seasons, including autumn migration, winter, and spring migration. We defined spatial scales based on movement patterns such that movements >0.25 and <30.00 km were classified as local scale and movements >30.00 km were classified as relocation scale. Habitat selection at the local scale was generally influenced by local and landscape-level variables across all seasons. Variables in top models at the local scale included proximities to cropland, emergent wetland, open water, and woody wetland. Similarly, variables associated with area of cropland, emergent wetland, open water, and woody wetland were also included at the local scale. At the relocation scale, mallards selected resource units based on more generalized variables, including proximity to wetlands and total wetland area. Our results emphasize the role of landscape composition in waterbird habitat selection and provide further support for local wetland landscapes to be considered functional units of waterbird conservation and management.

  5. Density and habitat of breeding Swallow-tailed Kites in the lower Suwannee ecosystem, Florida

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Sykes, P.W., Jr.; Kepler, C.B.; Litzenberger, K.L.; Sansing, H.R.; Lewis, E.T.R.; Hatfield, J.S.

    1999-01-01

    Historically the Swallow-tailed Kite (Elanoides forficatus) bred in the United States in at least 16 eastern states. Currently it is restricted to seven southeastern states, with most of its breeding range in Florida. Breeding Bird Surveys indicate a declining trend for this Neotropical migrant in most of Florida. Using a rapid survey technique at the Lower Suwannee NWR on 25-27 Mar. 1997, we scanned for kites from 16 sampling stations above the forest canopy, using 10X binoculars for 45 min per station. An effective detection distance of 2.4 km provided almost complete coverage of kite habitat (excluding salt marsh) on the refuge (14,620 ha) and in a 1.6-km buffer (13,526 ha). A mobile observation platform, extended to heights of 30-34 m provided an unobstructed view above the forest canopy where foraging bouts, feeding, courtship displays, and other activities by this species occur. This technique was found to be efficient in obtaining an estimate of potential breeding pairs. An estimated 19 breeding pairs were observed, with possibly five additional pairs, a density of at least one pair per 1173-1407 ha. There was no opportunity to search for nests so we were unable to correlate number of active nests with the number of kites observed, and linear nature of study area might concentrate birds, including nonbreeders, so our density of kites may or may not be typical for other areas. The refuge has a mosaic of 11 different habitats (7 forest types, freshwater and salt marshes, open water and urban/suburban) providing much linear edge to the matrix of different plant communities that range in height from less than 1 m to greater than 30 m. Such structure provides quality habitat for Swallow-tailed Kites.

  6. Conspecific reproductive success and breeding habitat selection: Implications for the study of coloniality

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Danchin, E.; Boulinier, T.; Massot, M.

    1998-01-01

    Habitat selection is a crucial process in the life cycle of animals because it can affect most components of fitness. It has been proposed that some animals cue on the reproductive success of conspecifics to select breeding habitats. We tested this hypothesis with demographic and behavioral data from a 17-yr study of the Black-legged Kittiwake (Rissa tridactyla), a cliff-nesting seabird. As the hypothesis assumes, the Black-legged Kittiwake nesting environment was patchy, and the relative quality of the different patches (i.e., breeding cliffs) varied in time. The average reproductive success of the breeders of a given cliff was predictable from one year to the next, but this predictability faded after several years. The dynamic nature of cliff quality in the long term is partly explained by the autocorrelation of the prevalence of an ectoparasite that influences reproductive success. As predicted by the performance-based conspecific attraction hypothesis, the reproductive success of current breeders on a given cliff was predictive of the reproductive success of new recruits on the cliff in the following year. Breeders tended to recruit to the previous year's most productive cliffs and to emigrate from the least productive ones. Consequently, the dynamics of breeder numbers on the cliffs were explained by local reproductive success on a year-to-year basis. Because, on average, young Black-legged Kittiwakes first breed when 4 yr old, such a relationship probably results from individual choices based on the assessment of previous-year local quality. When breeders changed breeding cliffs between years, they selected cliffs of per capita higher reproductive success. Furthermore, after accounting for the potential effects of age and sex as well as between-year variations, the effect of individual breeding performance on breeding dispersal was strongly influenced by the average reproductive success of other breeders on the same cliff. Individual breeding performance did

  7. Improving shelf life of blackberries through conventional breeding

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The University of Arkansas began blackberry breeding in 1964, and fruit breeder James N. Moore envisioned vast improvement of this "native" southern U.S. crop through crossing and selection of existing germplasm. He used the recurrent mass selection system of breeding, a system that utilizes the cro...

  8. Potential roadside biases due to habitat changes along Breeding Bird Survey routes

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Keller, C.M.E.; Scallan, J.T.

    1999-01-01

    Breeding Bird Surveys (BBS) are conducted along roadside routes to enable a large geographic area to be surveyed. Yet the potential biases of sampling populations only from roadsides have received little attention. We sampled aerial photography of BBS routes taken in the mid-1960s and late-1980s to evaluate whether habitat changes that occurred along roadsides were also occurring in the surrounding area, and whether the frequency of habitats encountered along roadsides were similar to that off-route. We examined 28 routes in Maryland and 25 routes in Ohio, and defined roadside area as within 200 m of the road, and off-route as 200-1,600 m from the road. Most habitat changes that occurred along BBS roadsides also were occurring in the off-route areas. However, increases in urban cover was significantly greater along the road in Maryland where urbanization of farmland was the predominant habitat change. The small increase in urban cover in Ohio was not significantly greater along the road. Construction of single family homes was greater along BBS roadsides in both states. In Ohio, the greatest change in habitat was the conversion of farmland back to forest, which was not significantly greater along the road. Changes associated with urbanization were more biased towards roadsides than the reforestation of farmland. Within one time period, roadside areas had less forest and more agricultural and urban cover types than occurred off-route.

  9. Breeding habitat selection and home range of radio-marked black ducks (Anas rubripes) in Maine

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Ringelman, J.K.; Longcore, J.R.; Owen, R.B., Jr.

    1982-01-01

    Telemetry techniques were used to monitor the movements and habitat use of 13 female and 7 male black ducks (Anas rubripes) in an inland breeding region of south central Maine in 1977-1980. Black ducks preferred persistent emergent, broad-leaved deciduous forested, and broad-leaved deciduous scrub-shrub wetlands over unconsolidated organic bottom, needle-leaved evergreen forested, and broad-leaved evergreen scrub-shrub ponds. Birds also made frequent use of small ephemeral pools and streams throughout the breeding period. Nests were located in several habitats ranging from wetland sites to upland areas 1.5 km from the most frequently used pond. Home range size averaged 119 ha for females and 231 ha for males and did not differ by reproductive stage. Three pairs used only a single pond during the incubation period. Home ranges were linear (linearity index = 2.8), averaging 1956 m long for females and 2755 m for males. Wetlands used most by hens during incubation recesses were not always those located closest to the nest. Radio-marked ducks that returned in subsequent breeding seasons demonstrated fidelity to the previously used home range. Pair bonds of marked birds lasted until day 19 or 20 of incubation for initial nesting attempts.

  10. Habitat selection by breeding waterbirds at ponds with size-structured fish populations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kloskowski, Janusz; Nieoczym, Marek; Polak, Marcin; Pitucha, Piotr

    2010-07-01

    Fish may significantly affect habitat use by birds, either as their prey or as competitors. Fish communities are often distinctly size-structured, but the consequences for waterbird assemblages remain poorly understood. We examined the effects of size structure of common carp ( Cyprinus carpio) cohorts together with other biotic and abiotic pond characteristics on the distribution of breeding waterbirds in a seminatural system of monocultured ponds, where three fish age classes were separately stocked. Fish age corresponded to a distinct fish size gradient. Fish age and total biomass, macroinvertebrate and amphibian abundance, and emergent vegetation best explained the differences in bird density between ponds. Abundance of animal prey other than fish (aquatic macroinvertebrates and larval amphibians) decreased with increasing carp age in the ponds. Densities of ducks and smaller grebes were strongly negatively associated with fish age/size gradient. The largest of the grebes, the piscivorous great crested grebe ( Podiceps cristatus), was the only species that preferred ponds with medium-sized fish and was positively associated with total fish biomass. Habitat selection by bitterns and most rallids was instead strongly influenced by the relative amount of emergent vegetation cover in the ponds. Our results show that fish size structure may be an important cue for breeding habitat choice and a factor affording an opportunity for niche diversification in avian communities.

  11. Habitat Use and Body Mass Regulation among Warblers in the Sahel Region during the Non-Breeding Season.

    PubMed

    Vafidis, James O; Vaughan, Ian P; Jones, T Hefin; Facey, Richard J; Parry, Rob; Thomas, Robert J

    2014-01-01

    Migratory birds face significant challenges across their annual cycle, including occupying an appropriate non-breeding home range with sufficient foraging resources. This can affect demographic processes such as over-winter survival, migration mortality and subsequent breeding success. In the Sahel region of Africa, where millions of migratory songbirds attempt to survive the winter, some species of insectivorous warblers occupy both wetland and dry-scrubland habitats, whereas other species are wetland or dry-scrubland specialists. In this study we examine evidence for strategic regulation of body reserves and competition-driven habitat selection, by comparing invertebrate prey activity-density, warbler body size and extent of fat and pectoral muscle deposits, in each habitat type during the non-breeding season. Invertebrate activity-density was substantially higher in wetland habitats than in dry-scrubland. Eurasian reed warblers Acrocephalus scirpaceus occupying wetland habitats maintained lower body reserves than conspecifics occupying dry-scrub habitats, consistent with buffering of reserves against starvation in food-poor habitat. A similar, but smaller, difference in body reserves between wet and dry habitat was found among subalpine warblers Sylvia cantillans but not in chiffchaffs Phylloscopus collybita inhabiting dry-scrub and scrub fringing wetlands. Body reserves were relatively low among habitat specialist species; resident African reed warbler A. baeticatus and migratory sedge warbler A. schoenobaenus exclusively occupying wetland habitats, and Western olivaceous warblers Iduna opaca exclusively occupying dry habitats. These results suggest that specialists in preferred habitats and generalists occupying prey-rich habitats can reduce body reserves, whereas generalists occupying prey-poor habitats carry an increased level of body reserves as a strategic buffer against starvation. PMID:25426716

  12. Habitat Use and Body Mass Regulation among Warblers in the Sahel Region during the Non-Breeding Season

    PubMed Central

    Vafidis, James O.; Vaughan, Ian P.; Jones, T. Hefin; Facey, Richard J.; Parry, Rob; Thomas, Robert J.

    2014-01-01

    Migratory birds face significant challenges across their annual cycle, including occupying an appropriate non-breeding home range with sufficient foraging resources. This can affect demographic processes such as over-winter survival, migration mortality and subsequent breeding success. In the Sahel region of Africa, where millions of migratory songbirds attempt to survive the winter, some species of insectivorous warblers occupy both wetland and dry-scrubland habitats, whereas other species are wetland or dry-scrubland specialists. In this study we examine evidence for strategic regulation of body reserves and competition-driven habitat selection, by comparing invertebrate prey activity-density, warbler body size and extent of fat and pectoral muscle deposits, in each habitat type during the non-breeding season. Invertebrate activity-density was substantially higher in wetland habitats than in dry-scrubland. Eurasian reed warblers Acrocephalus scirpaceus occupying wetland habitats maintained lower body reserves than conspecifics occupying dry-scrub habitats, consistent with buffering of reserves against starvation in food-poor habitat. A similar, but smaller, difference in body reserves between wet and dry habitat was found among subalpine warblers Sylvia cantillans but not in chiffchaffs Phylloscopus collybita inhabiting dry-scrub and scrub fringing wetlands. Body reserves were relatively low among habitat specialist species; resident African reed warbler A. baeticatus and migratory sedge warbler A. schoenobaenus exclusively occupying wetland habitats, and Western olivaceous warblers Iduna opaca exclusively occupying dry habitats. These results suggest that specialists in preferred habitats and generalists occupying prey-rich habitats can reduce body reserves, whereas generalists occupying prey-poor habitats carry an increased level of body reserves as a strategic buffer against starvation. PMID:25426716

  13. Predicting breeding habitat for amphibians: A spatiotemporal analysis across Yellowstone National Park

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Bartelt, P.E.; Gallant, A.L.; Klaver, R.W.; Wright, C.K.; Patla, D.A.; Peterson, C.R.

    2011-01-01

    The ability to predict amphibian breeding across landscapes is important for informing land management decisions and helping biologists better understand and remediate factors contributing to declines in amphibian populations. We built geospatial models of likely breeding habitats for each of four amphibian species that breed in Yellowstone National Park (YNP). We used field data collected in 2000-2002 from 497 sites among 16 basins and predictor variables from geospatial models produced from remotely sensed data (e.g., digital elevation model, complex topographic index, landform data, wetland probability, and vegetative cover). Except for 31 sites in one basin that were surveyed in both 2000 and 2002, all sites were surveyed once. We used polytomous regression to build statistical models for each species of amphibian from (1) field survey site data only, (2) field data combined with data from geospatial models, and (3) data from geospatial models only. Based on measures of receiver operating characteristic (ROC) scores, models of the second type best explained likely breeding habitat because they contained the most information (ROC values ranged from 0.70 to 0.88). However, models of the third type could be applied to the entire YNP landscape and produced maps that could be verified with reserve field data. Accuracy rates for models built for single years were highly variable, ranging from 0.30 to 0.78. Accuracy rates for models built with data combined from multiple years were higher and less variable, ranging from 0.60 to 0.80. Combining results from the geospatial multiyear models yielded maps of "core" breeding areas (areas with high probability values for all three years) surrounded by areas that scored high for only one or two years, providing an estimate of variability among years. Such information can highlight landscape options for amphibian conservation. For example, our models identify alternative areas that could be protected for each species

  14. Predicting breeding habitat for amphibians: a spatiotemporal analysis across Yellowstone National Park

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Bartelt, Paul E.; Gallant, Alisa L.; Klaver, Robert W.; Wright, Christopher K.; Patla, Debra A.; Peterson, Charles R.

    2011-01-01

    The ability to predict amphibian breeding across landscapes is important for informing land management decisions and helping biologists better understand and remediate factors contributing to declines in amphibian populations. We built geospatial models of likely breeding habitats for each of four amphibian species that breed in Yellowstone National Park (YNP). We used field data collected in 2000-2002 from 497 sites among 16 basins and predictor variables from geospatial models produced from remotely sensed data (e.g., digital elevation model, complex topographic index, landform data, wetland probabililty, and vegetative cover). Except for 31 sites in one basin that were surveyed in both 2000 and 2002, all sites were surveyed once. We used polytomous regression to build statistical models for each species of amphibian from 1) field survey site data only, 2) field data combined with data from geospatial models, and 3) data from geospatial models only. Based on measures of receiver operating characteristic (ROC) scores, models of the second type best explained likely breeding habitat because they contained the most information (ROC values ranged from 0.70 - 0.88). However, models of the third type could be applied to the entire YNP landscape and produced maps that could be verified with reserve field data. Accuracy rates for models built for single years were highly variable, ranging from 0.30 to 0.78. Accuracy rates for models built with data combined from multiple years were higher and less variable, ranging from 0.60 to 0.80. Combining results from the geospatial multiyear models yielded maps of "core" breeding areas (areas with high probability values for all three years) surrounded by areas that scored high for only one or two years, providing an estimate of variability among years. Such information can highlight landscape options for amphibian conservation. For example, our models identify alternative for areas that could be protected for each species

  15. Avian Use of Perennial Biomass Feedstocks as Post-Breeding and Migratory Stopover Habitat

    PubMed Central

    Robertson, Bruce A.; Doran, Patrick J.; Loomis, Elizabeth R.; Robertson, J. Roy; Schemske, Douglas W.

    2011-01-01

    Increased production of biomass crops in North America will require new agricultural land, intensify the cultivation of land already under production and introduce new types of biomass crops. Assessing the potential biodiversity impacts of novel agricultural systems is fundamental to the maintenance of biodiversity in agricultural landscapes, yet the consequences of expanded biomass production remain unclear. We evaluate the ability of two candidate second generation biomass feedstocks (switchgrass, Panicum virgatum, and mixed-grass prairie) not currently managed as crops to act as post-breeding and fall migratory stopover habitat for birds. In total, we detected 41 bird species, including grassland specialists and species of state and national conservation concern (e.g. Henslow's Sparrow, Ammodramus henslowii). Avian species richness was generally comparable in switchgrass and prairie and increased with patch size in both patch types. Grassland specialists were less abundant and less likely to occur in patches within highly forested landscapes and were more common and likely to occur in larger patches, indicating that this group is also area-sensitive outside of the breeding season. Variation in the biomass and richness of arthropod food within patches was generally unrelated to richness and abundance metrics. Total bird abundance and that of grassland specialists was higher in patches with greater vegetation structural heterogeneity. Collectively, we find that perennial biomass feedstocks have potential to provide post-breeding and migratory stopover habitat for birds, but that the placement and management of crops will be critical factors in determining their suitability for species of conservation concern. Industrialization of cellulosic bioenergy production that results in reduced crop structural heterogeneity is likely to dramatically reduce the suitability of perennial biomass crops for birds. PMID:21390274

  16. Avian use of perennial biomass feedstocks as post-breeding and migratory stopover habitat.

    PubMed

    Robertson, Bruce A; Doran, Patrick J; Loomis, Elizabeth R; Robertson, J Roy; Schemske, Douglas W

    2011-01-01

    Increased production of biomass crops in North America will require new agricultural land, intensify the cultivation of land already under production and introduce new types of biomass crops. Assessing the potential biodiversity impacts of novel agricultural systems is fundamental to the maintenance of biodiversity in agricultural landscapes, yet the consequences of expanded biomass production remain unclear. We evaluate the ability of two candidate second generation biomass feedstocks (switchgrass, Panicum virgatum, and mixed-grass prairie) not currently managed as crops to act as post-breeding and fall migratory stopover habitat for birds. In total, we detected 41 bird species, including grassland specialists and species of state and national conservation concern (e.g. Henslow's Sparrow, Ammodramus henslowii). Avian species richness was generally comparable in switchgrass and prairie and increased with patch size in both patch types. Grassland specialists were less abundant and less likely to occur in patches within highly forested landscapes and were more common and likely to occur in larger patches, indicating that this group is also area-sensitive outside of the breeding season. Variation in the biomass and richness of arthropod food within patches was generally unrelated to richness and abundance metrics. Total bird abundance and that of grassland specialists was higher in patches with greater vegetation structural heterogeneity. Collectively, we find that perennial biomass feedstocks have potential to provide post-breeding and migratory stopover habitat for birds, but that the placement and management of crops will be critical factors in determining their suitability for species of conservation concern. Industrialization of cellulosic bioenergy production that results in reduced crop structural heterogeneity is likely to dramatically reduce the suitability of perennial biomass crops for birds. PMID:21390274

  17. Species Composition and Diversity of Malaria Vector Breeding Habitats in Trincomalee District of Sri Lanka

    PubMed Central

    Gunathilaka, Nayana; Abeyewickreme, Wimaladharma; Hapugoda, Menaka; Wickremasinghe, Rajitha

    2015-01-01

    Introduction. Mosquito larval ecology is important in determining larval densities and species assemblage. This in turn influences malaria transmission in an area. Therefore, understanding larval habitat ecology is important in designing malaria control programs. Method. Larval surveys were conducted in 20 localities under five sentinel sites (Padavisiripura, Gomarankadawala, Thoppur, Mollipothana, and Ichchallampaththu) in Trincomalee District, Eastern Province of Sri Lanka, between June 2010 and July 2013. The relationship between seven abiotic variables (temperature, pH, conductivity, Total Dissolved Solid (TDS), turbidity, Dissolved Oxygen (DO), and salinity) was measured. Results. A total of 21,347 anophelines were recorded representing 15 species. Anopheles subpictus 24.72% (5,278/21,347) was the predominant species, followed by 24.67% (5,267/21,347) of An. nigerrimus and 14.56% (3,109/21,347) of An. peditaeniatus. A total of 9,430 breeding habitats under twenty-one categories were identified. An. culcicifacies was noted to be highest from built wells (20.5%) with high salinity (1102.3 ± 81.8 mg/L), followed by waste water collections (20.2%) having low DO levels (2.85 ± 0.03 mg/L) and high TDS (1,654 ± 140 mg/L). Conclusion. This study opens an avenue to explore new breeding habitats of malaria vectors in the country and reemphasizes the requirement of conducting entomological surveillance to detect potential transmission of malaria in Sri Lanka under the current malaria elimination programme. PMID:26583136

  18. Ecological constraints on breeding system evolution: the influence of habitat on brood desertion in Kentish plover.

    PubMed

    Kosztolányi, András; Székely, Tamas; Cuthill, Innes C; Yilmaz, K Tuluhan; Berberoglu, Süha

    2006-01-01

    1. One of the fundamental insights of behavioural ecology is that resources influence breeding systems. For instance, when food resources are plenty, one parent is able to care for the young on its own, so that the other parent can desert and became polygamous. We investigated this hypothesis in the context of classical polyandry when females may have several mates within a single breeding season, and parental duties are carried out largely by the male. 2. We studied a precocial wader, the Kentish plover Charadrius alexandrinus, that exhibits variable brood care such that the chicks may be raised by both parents, only by the female or, more often, only by the male. The timing of female desertion varies: some females desert their brood at hatching of the eggs and lay a clutch for a new mate, whereas other females stay with their brood until the chicks fledge. Kentish plovers are excellent organisms with which to study breeding system evolution, as some of their close relatives exhibit classical polyandry (Eurasian dotterel Eudromias morinellus, mountain plover Charadrius montanus), whereas others are polygynous (northern lapwing Vanellus vanellus). 3. Kentish plovers raised their broods in two habitats in our study site in southern Turkey: saltmarsh and lakeshore. Food intake was higher on the lakeshore than in the saltmarsh as judged from feeding behaviour of chicks and adults. As the season proceeded and the saltmarsh dried out, the broods moved toward the lakeshore. 4. As the density of plovers increased on lakeshore, the parents spent more time defending their young, and female parents stayed with their brood longer on the lakeshore. 5. We conclude that the influence of food abundance on breeding systems is more complex than currently anticipated. Abundant food resources appear to have profound implications on spatial distribution of broods, and the social interactions between broods constrain female desertion and polyandry. PMID:16903063

  19. Underwater topography determines critical breeding habitat for humpback whales near Osa Peninsula, Costa Rica: implications for marine protected areas.

    PubMed

    Oviedo, L; Solís, M

    2008-06-01

    Migrating humpback whales from northern and southern feeding grounds come to the tropical waters near Osa Peninsula, Pacific of Costa Rica, to reproduce and raise their calves. Planning effective marine protected areas that encompass humpback critical habitats require data about which oceanographic features influence distribution during the breeding period. This study examines the relationship between water depth and ocean floor slope with humpback whale distribution, based on sightings during two breeding seasons (2005 and 2006). Data are from the Southern and Northern subpopulations in the Eastern Tropical Pacific (ETP). Analysis followed the basic principles of the Ecological Niche Factors Analysis (ENFA), where indices of Marginality and Tolerance provide insights on the restrictiveness of habitat use. At a fine scale, physical factors such as water depth and slope define the critical breeding and nursing habitat for M. novaeangliae. Divergence in the subsamples means of depths and slope distribution, with the global mean of the study area in both eco-geographical variables, determine habitat requirements restricted by topographic features such as depths (< 100 m) and slope (< 10%), and locate the key breeding and nursing habitat of the species within the continental shelf domains. Proposed Marine Protected Areas (MPA's) network plans should consider connectivity of Cafio Island-Drake Bay and the extension of Corcovado National Park maritime borders. PMID:19256430

  20. Human disturbance and stage-specific habitat requirements influence snowy plover site occupancy during the breeding season.

    PubMed

    Webber, Alyson F; Heath, Julie A; Fischer, Richard A

    2013-04-01

    Habitat use has important consequences for avian reproductive success and survival. In coastal areas with recreational activity, human disturbance may limit use of otherwise suitable habitat. Snowy plovers Charadrius nivosus have a patchy breeding distribution along the coastal areas on the Florida Panhandle, USA. Our goal was to determine the relative effects of seasonal human disturbance and habitat requirements on snowy plover habitat use. We surveyed 303 sites for snowy plovers, human disturbance, and habitat features between January and July 2009 and 2010. We made multiple visits during three different sampling periods that corresponded to snowy plover breeding: pre-breeding, incubation, and brood-rearing and used multi-season occupancy models to examine whether human disturbance, habitat features, or both influenced site occupancy, colonization (probability of transition from an unoccupied site to an occupied site), and extinction (probability of transition from an occupied site to an unoccupied site). Snowy plover site occupancy and colonization was negatively associated with human disturbance and site extinction was positively associated with human disturbance. Interdune vegetation had a negative effect on occupancy and colonization, indicating that plovers were less likely to use areas with uniform, dense vegetation among dunes. Also, dune shape, beach debris, and access to low-energy foraging areas influenced site occupancy, colonization, and extinction. Plovers used habitat based on beach characteristics that provided stage-specific resource needs; however, human disturbance was the strongest predictor of site occupancy. In addition, vegetation plantings used to enhance dune rehabilitation may negatively impact plover site occupancy. Management actions that decrease human disturbance, such as symbolic fencing and signage, may increase the amount of breeding habitat available to snowy plovers on the Florida Panhandle and in other areas with high human

  1. Human disturbance and stage-specific habitat requirements influence snowy plover site occupancy during the breeding season

    PubMed Central

    Webber, Alyson F; Heath, Julie A; Fischer, Richard A

    2013-01-01

    Habitat use has important consequences for avian reproductive success and survival. In coastal areas with recreational activity, human disturbance may limit use of otherwise suitable habitat. Snowy plovers Charadrius nivosus have a patchy breeding distribution along the coastal areas on the Florida Panhandle, USA. Our goal was to determine the relative effects of seasonal human disturbance and habitat requirements on snowy plover habitat use. We surveyed 303 sites for snowy plovers, human disturbance, and habitat features between January and July 2009 and 2010. We made multiple visits during three different sampling periods that corresponded to snowy plover breeding: pre-breeding, incubation, and brood-rearing and used multi-season occupancy models to examine whether human disturbance, habitat features, or both influenced site occupancy, colonization (probability of transition from an unoccupied site to an occupied site), and extinction (probability of transition from an occupied site to an unoccupied site). Snowy plover site occupancy and colonization was negatively associated with human disturbance and site extinction was positively associated with human disturbance. Interdune vegetation had a negative effect on occupancy and colonization, indicating that plovers were less likely to use areas with uniform, dense vegetation among dunes. Also, dune shape, beach debris, and access to low-energy foraging areas influenced site occupancy, colonization, and extinction. Plovers used habitat based on beach characteristics that provided stage-specific resource needs; however, human disturbance was the strongest predictor of site occupancy. In addition, vegetation plantings used to enhance dune rehabilitation may negatively impact plover site occupancy. Management actions that decrease human disturbance, such as symbolic fencing and signage, may increase the amount of breeding habitat available to snowy plovers on the Florida Panhandle and in other areas with high human

  2. Habitat area requirements of breeding forest birds of the middle Atlantic states

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Robbins, Chandler S.; Dawson, Deanna K.; Dowell, Barbara A.

    1989-01-01

    Conservation of birds requires an understanding of their nesting requirements, including area as well as structural characteristics of the habitat. Previous studies have shown that many neotropical migrant bird species seem to depend on extensive forested areas, but the specific area requirements of individual species have not been clarified sufficiently to aid in design and management of effective preserves. For this 5-year study, bird and vegetation data were obtained at 469 points in forests ranging in area from 0.1 ha to more than 3,000 ha in Maryland and adjacent states. Data were analyzed first by stepwise regression to identify habitat factors that had the greatest influence on relative abundance of each bird species. In the relatively undisturbed mature forests studied, degree of isolation and area were significant predictors of relative abundance for more bird species than were any habitat variables. For species for which forest area was a significant predictor of abundance, we used logistic regression to examine the relationship between forest area and the probability of detecting the species. In managing forest lands for wildlife, top priority should go toward providing for the needs of area-sensitive or rare species rather than increasing species diversity per se. Avian species that occur in small and disturbed forests are generalists that are adapted to survival under edge conditions and need no special assistance from man. Forest reserves with thousands of hectares are required to have the highest probability of providing for the least common species of forest birds in a region. However, if preservation of large contiguous forest tracts is not a realistic option, results of this study suggest 2 alternative approaches. First, if other habitat attributes also are considered, smaller forests may provide suitable breeding sites for relatively rare species. Second, smaller tracts in close proximity to other forests may serve to attract or retain area

  3. Simulating range-wide population and breeding habitat dynamics for an endangered woodland warbler in the face of uncertainty

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Adam Duarte; Hatfield, Jeffrey; Todd M. Swannack; Michael R. J. Forstner; M. Clay Green; Floyd W. Weckerly

    2015-01-01

    Population viability analyses provide a quantitative approach that seeks to predict the possible future status of a species of interest under different scenarios and, therefore, can be important components of large-scale species’ conservation programs. We created a model and simulated range-wide population and breeding habitat dynamics for an endangered woodland warbler, the golden-cheeked warbler (Setophaga chrysoparia). Habitat-transition probabilities were estimated across the warbler's breeding range by combining National Land Cover Database imagery with multistate modeling. Using these estimates, along with recently published demographic estimates, we examined if the species can remain viable into the future given the current conditions. Lastly, we evaluated if protecting a greater amount of habitat would increase the number of warblers that can be supported in the future by systematically increasing the amount of protected habitat and comparing the estimated terminal carrying capacity at the end of 50 years of simulated habitat change. The estimated habitat-transition probabilities supported the hypothesis that habitat transitions are unidirectional, whereby habitat is more likely to diminish than regenerate. The model results indicated population viability could be achieved under current conditions, depending on dispersal. However, there is considerable uncertainty associated with the population projections due to parametric uncertainty. Model results suggested that increasing the amount of protected lands would have a substantial impact on terminal carrying capacities at the end of a 50-year simulation. Notably, this study identifies the need for collecting the data required to estimate demographic parameters in relation to changes in habitat metrics and population density in multiple regions, and highlights the importance of establishing a common definition of what constitutes protected habitat, what management goals are suitable within those protected

  4. Mapping urban and peri-urban breeding habitats of Aedes mosquitoes using a fuzzy analytical hierarchical process based on climatic and physical parameters.

    PubMed

    Sarfraz, Muhammad Shahzad; Tripathi, Nagesh K; Faruque, Fazlay S; Bajwa, Usama Ijaz; Kitamoto, Asanobu; Souris, Marc

    2014-01-01

    The spread of dengue fever depends mainly on the availability of favourable breeding sites for its mosquito vectors around human dwellings. To investigate if the various factors influencing breeding habitats can be mapped from space, dengue indices, such as the container index, the house index and the Breteau index, were calculated from Ministry of Public health data collected three times annually in Phitsanulok, Thailand between 2009 and 2011. The most influential factors were found to be temperature, humidity, rainfall, population density, elevation and land cover. Models were worked out using parameters mostly derived from freely available satellite images and fuzzy logic software with parameter synchronisation and a predication algorithm based on data mining and the Decision Tree method. The models developed were found to be sufficiently flexible to accommodate additional parameters and sampling data that might improve prediction of favourable breeding hotspots. The algorithm applied can not only be used for the prediction of near real-time scenarios with respect to dengue, but can also be applied for monitoring other diseases influenced by environmental and climatic factors. The multi-criteria model presented is a cost-effective way of identifying outbreak hotspots and early warning systems lend themselves for development based on this strategy. The proposed approach demonstrates the successful utilisation of remotely sensed images to map mosquito breeding habitats. PMID:25599639

  5. Non-breeding habitat preference affects ecological speciation in migratory waders

    PubMed Central

    2007-01-01

    Models of ecological speciation predict that certain types of habitat should be more conducive to species diversification than others. In this study, I test this hypothesis in waders of the sub-order Charadrii using the number of morphological sub-species per species as an index of diversity. I classified all members of this clade as spending the non-breeding season either coastally or inland and argue that these represent fundamentally different environments. Coastal mudflats are characterised by high predictability and patchy worldwide distribution, whilst inland wetlands are widespread but unpredictable. The results show that migratory species that winter coastally are sub-divided into more sub-species than those that winter inland. This was not the case for non-migratory species. I argue that coastal environments select for more rigid migratory pathways, whilst inland wetlands favour more flexible movement patterns. Population sub-division could then result from the passive segregation of breeding sites or from the active selection for assortative mating of ecomorphs. PMID:18087687

  6. Predicting Risks to Wildlife Populations from Multriple Stressors: Mercury, Habitat Alteration and Common Loon Breeding in New Hampshire, USA

    EPA Science Inventory

    We applied a generic approach to estimate and test predictions of population risks of mercury (Hg) exposure and habitat alteration on common loons (Gavia immer) breeding in New Hampshire (NH), USA. We developed a publically-accessible data system, integrating environmental data ...

  7. Preferred habitat of breeding birds may be compromised by climate change: unexpected effects of an exceptionally cold, wet spring.

    PubMed

    Whitehouse, Michael J; Harrison, Nancy M; Mackenzie, Julia; Hinsley, Shelley A

    2013-01-01

    Previous studies of the consequences for breeding birds of climate change have explored how their populations may respond to increasing temperatures. However, few have considered the likely outcome of predicted extreme conditions and the relative vulnerability of populations in different habitats. Here, we compare phenology and breeding success in great tits and blue tits over a 10 year period, including the extremely harsh conditions during spring 2012, at three sites in eastern England--mixed deciduous woodland, riparian and urban habitat. Production, measured as brood biomass, was significantly lower in 2012 compared with the previous 9 years, with the decrease in productivity relatively greatest in woodland habitat. Production was related to hatch delay, i.e. birds not initiating incubation immediately after clutch completion, which was more common in 2012 than in previous years. The best predictor of hatch delay was daytime temperature (not nighttime minimum temperature) and rainfall, which convincingly reflected low growth and activity of caterpillar prey. We found that birds breeding in riparian and urban habitats were less vulnerable to the extremes of weather than those breeding in mixed deciduous woodland. PMID:24058694

  8. Infusion-Baited Ovitraps to Survey Ovipositional Height Preferences of Container-Breeding Mosquitoes in Two Florida Habitats

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The response of container-breeding mosquitoes to ovitraps containing water, oak or oak-pine infusion was evaluated in four suburban and four sylvatic habitats in north central Florida to ascertain species specific oviposition height preferences. A total of 48 ovitraps were suspended at 1 and 6 meter...

  9. Preferred Habitat of Breeding Birds May Be Compromised by Climate Change: Unexpected Effects of an Exceptionally Cold, Wet Spring

    PubMed Central

    Whitehouse, Michael J.; Harrison, Nancy M.; Mackenzie, Julia; Hinsley, Shelley A.

    2013-01-01

    Previous studies of the consequences for breeding birds of climate change have explored how their populations may respond to increasing temperatures. However, few have considered the likely outcome of predicted extreme conditions and the relative vulnerability of populations in different habitats. Here, we compare phenology and breeding success in great tits and blue tits over a 10 year period, including the extremely harsh conditions during spring 2012, at three sites in eastern England – mixed deciduous woodland, riparian and urban habitat. Production, measured as brood biomass, was significantly lower in 2012 compared with the previous 9 years, with the decrease in productivity relatively greatest in woodland habitat. Production was related to hatch delay, i.e. birds not initiating incubation immediately after clutch completion, which was more common in 2012 than in previous years. The best predictor of hatch delay was daytime temperature (not nighttime minimum temperature) and rainfall, which convincingly reflected low growth and activity of caterpillar prey. We found that birds breeding in riparian and urban habitats were less vulnerable to the extremes of weather than those breeding in mixed deciduous woodland. PMID:24058694

  10. Combining Site Occupancy, Breeding Population Sizes and Reproductive Success to Calculate Time-Averaged Reproductive Output of Different Habitat Types: An Application to Tricolored Blackbirds

    PubMed Central

    Holyoak, Marcel; Meese, Robert J.; Graves, Emily E.

    2014-01-01

    In metapopulations in which habitat patches vary in quality and occupancy it can be complicated to calculate the net time-averaged contribution to reproduction of particular populations. Surprisingly, few indices have been proposed for this purpose. We combined occupancy, abundance, frequency of occurrence, and reproductive success to determine the net value of different sites through time and applied this method to a bird of conservation concern. The Tricolored Blackbird (Agelaius tricolor) has experienced large population declines, is the most colonial songbird in North America, is largely confined to California, and breeds itinerantly in multiple habitat types. It has had chronically low reproductive success in recent years. Although young produced per nest have previously been compared across habitats, no study has simultaneously considered site occupancy and reproductive success. Combining occupancy, abundance, frequency of occurrence, reproductive success and nest failure rate we found that that large colonies in grain fields fail frequently because of nest destruction due to harvest prior to fledging. Consequently, net time-averaged reproductive output is low compared to colonies in non-native Himalayan blackberry or thistles, and native stinging nettles. Cattail marshes have intermediate reproductive output, but their reproductive output might be improved by active management. Harvest of grain-field colonies necessitates either promoting delay of harvest or creating alternative, more secure nesting habitats. Stinging nettle and marsh colonies offer the main potential sources for restoration or native habitat creation. From 2005–2011 breeding site occupancy declined 3x faster than new breeding colonies were formed, indicating a rapid decline in occupancy. Total abundance showed a similar decline. Causes of variation in the value for reproduction of nesting substrates and factors behind continuing population declines merit urgent investigation. The method

  11. Combining site occupancy, breeding population sizes and reproductive success to calculate time-averaged reproductive output of different habitat types: an application to Tricolored Blackbirds.

    PubMed

    Holyoak, Marcel; Meese, Robert J; Graves, Emily E

    2014-01-01

    In metapopulations in which habitat patches vary in quality and occupancy it can be complicated to calculate the net time-averaged contribution to reproduction of particular populations. Surprisingly, few indices have been proposed for this purpose. We combined occupancy, abundance, frequency of occurrence, and reproductive success to determine the net value of different sites through time and applied this method to a bird of conservation concern. The Tricolored Blackbird (Agelaius tricolor) has experienced large population declines, is the most colonial songbird in North America, is largely confined to California, and breeds itinerantly in multiple habitat types. It has had chronically low reproductive success in recent years. Although young produced per nest have previously been compared across habitats, no study has simultaneously considered site occupancy and reproductive success. Combining occupancy, abundance, frequency of occurrence, reproductive success and nest failure rate we found that that large colonies in grain fields fail frequently because of nest destruction due to harvest prior to fledging. Consequently, net time-averaged reproductive output is low compared to colonies in non-native Himalayan blackberry or thistles, and native stinging nettles. Cattail marshes have intermediate reproductive output, but their reproductive output might be improved by active management. Harvest of grain-field colonies necessitates either promoting delay of harvest or creating alternative, more secure nesting habitats. Stinging nettle and marsh colonies offer the main potential sources for restoration or native habitat creation. From 2005-2011 breeding site occupancy declined 3x faster than new breeding colonies were formed, indicating a rapid decline in occupancy. Total abundance showed a similar decline. Causes of variation in the value for reproduction of nesting substrates and factors behind continuing population declines merit urgent investigation. The method we

  12. Breeding habitat of sparrowhawks, Accipiter nisus on spoil heaps after coal mining

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Šálek, Miroslav; Hendrychová, Markéta; Řehoř, Michal

    2010-03-01

    Natural succession of spoil heaps after brown coal mining leads to the development of rich plant and invertebrate communities and therefore has been considered a proper alternative to conventional reclamation practice. Little is known, however, about the effects of these alternative approaches on vertebrate predators. This study analyses nest-site choice of the sparrowhawk, Accipiter nisus on afforested spoil heaps in the brown coal basin of north-west Bohemia, Czech Republic. Nest places of sparrowhawks, numbers of their main prey (small birds) and habitat attributes were investigated in 2007 and 2008 on 28 individual spoil heaps that were either reclaimed by silviculture or spontaneously afforested. Our results revealed preferences of breeding sparrowhawks for spontaneously developed birch growths with diverse mosaics of tree clumps, open patches and edge structures, all providing for opportunities to hunt. In addition, the proximity of large forests positively influenced nest-site choice of sparrowhawks. Although small birds were more abundant on Successions than Reclamations, our results did not suggest that numbers of this main prey were of higher importance for the sparrowhawks than habitat components of prey availability. These results highlight the importance of spontaneous succession as a rehabilitation alternative in post-mining landscapes.

  13. Foraging and nesting habitat of breeding male northern goshawks in the laurentian mixed forest province, Minnesota

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Boal, C.W.; Andersen, D.E.; Kennedy, P.L.

    2005-01-01

    We used radiotelemetry to examine foraging habitat preferences of 17 breeding, male northern goshawks (Accipiter gentilis) in Minnesota from 1998-2000. We assessed habitat preference using radio relocation points and 50-m radius buffers of radio relocation points. Our data suggested that foraging male goshawks used early-successional upland conifer stands (???25 yrs old), early-successional upland deciduous stands (???50 yrs old), late-successional upland conifer stands (???50 yrs old), and late-successional upland deciduous stands (???50 yrs old) more frequently than expected based on the abundance of these vegetation types in the landscape. The 2 most available stand types, early-successional upland deciduous (<25 yrs old) and all ages of late-successional lowland conifer stands, were used less than expected by foraging goshawks. Late-successional lowland deciduous stands (???50 yrs old) were used in proportion to availability. Although analysis of relocation points suggested early-successional upland deciduous stands (25-49 yrs old) and late-successional upland conifer stands (???50 yrs old) were used in proportion to availability, analysis of buffers around relocation points indicated that these stand types were also used more than expected by foraging goshawks. Regardless of vegetation community type, stands used by goshawks were structurally similar with high canopy and understory stem densities, high canopy closure, substantial shrub cover, and large amounts of woody debris. Nest stands consisted of taller and larger diameter canopy trees and fewer understory trees than foraging stands, but stands were otherwise similar in structural features, suggesting goshawks used similar stands for nesting and foraging but that they tended to select the most mature stands for nesting. A commonality among nesting and foraging stands was the presence of open spaces between the canopy and understory foliage, and between understory and shrub layer foliage. In our study area

  14. Spatial distribution & physicochemical characterization of the breeding habitats of Aedes aegypti in & around Kolkata, West Bengal, India

    PubMed Central

    Chatterjee, Soumendranath; Chakraborty, Arunima; Sinha, Shuvra Kanti

    2015-01-01

    Background & objectives: Dengue infection is endemic in several areas and the dengue virus is transmitted by Aedes mosquitoes. Thus, it becomes important to understand the breeding ecology of dengue vector and characterize the physicochemical parameters of its breeding habitat. The objective of this study was to analyze the physicochemical parameters of the breeding habitat of the dengue vector and to find out the nutrient composition of the habitat in and around Kolkata, West Bengal. In addition, a geographic information system (GIS) was used to map the disease prone areas for its effective management and prevention. Methods: Water samples were collected from various breeding habitats of Aedes mosquitoes of Kolkata and adjoining areas and were analysed for various physicochemical properties like acidity, alkalinity, hardness, electrical conductivity, total dissolved solids, concentration of chloride (Cl-), sodium (Na+), potassium (K+), fluoride (F-) in relation to larval prevalence. Results: Parameters like water pH, total dissolved solids, total hardness, electrical conductivity, concentration of chloride, sodium and potassium were seen to vary throughout the year. Certain parameters were found to be dependent on container type, like concentration of fluoride. Significant positive correlations were seen between per dip larval density and total dissolved solids (TDS) and electrical conductivity. Interpretation & conclusions: Water pH, electrical conductivity, total dissolved solids were seen to play a major role in the ovipositional preferences. Container type did not seem to affect TDS. Tyres had the highest TDS in most of the cases. Nutrient composition like sodium concentration was mostly found in the coconut shells, potassium concentration also showed the same. Thus, container type and various parameters and nutrients play a major role in determining where a gravid female mosquito will lay its eggs. It was observed that by altering various chemical and

  15. Sexual differences in the post-breeding movements and habitats selected by Western toads (Bufo boreas) in southeastern Idaho

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Bartelt, Paul E.; Peterson, Charles R.; Klaver, Robert W.

    2004-01-01

    We used radio-telemetry to study the movements and habitat use of Western toads (Bufo boreas) in the Targhee National Forest in southeastern Idaho. Eighteen toads (10 male and 8 female) that bred in a seasonally flooded pond, were fitted with radio-transmitters, tracked, and their movements mapped and analyzed with global positioning and geographic information systems. We also analyzed their patterns of habitat selection at micro- and macro-scales by comparing sites used by toads with randomly selected sites. After breeding, two male and six female toads left the breeding pond and used terrestrial habitats extensively. Male and female toads showed different patterns of movement and habitat use, although all toads seemed to behave in ways that reduced loss of body water (e.g., such as traveling on nights of high humidity). Male toads traveled shorter distances from the pond than females (581 ± 98 m and 1105 ± 272 m, respectively). Female toads used terrestrial habitats extensively and were selective of cover types (e.g., shrub) that provided greater protection from dehydration. Female toads also preferred certain habitat edges and open forests over forests with closed canopies or clearcuts. Information from this study can assist land managers in establishing protective buffers and managing forests for the protection of toad populations.

  16. Influence of habitat heterogeneity on distribution, occupancy patterns, and productivity of breeding peregrine falcons in central west Greenland

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Wightman, C.; Fuller, Mark R.

    2006-01-01

    We used occupancy and productivity data collected at 67 cliffs used for nesting from 1972 to 1999 to assess patterns of distribution and nest-site selection in an increasing population of Peregrine Falcons (Falco peregrinus) in central West Greenland. Peregrine Falcons breeding at traditionally occupied cliffs used for nesting had significantly lower variation in productivity and thus these cliffs were better quality sites. This indicates that Peregrine Falcons occupied cliffs according to a pattern of despotic distribution. Falcons breeding at cliffs that were consistently occupied during the breeding season had higher average productivity and lower variation in productivity than falcons at inconsistently occupied cliffs, and thus consistent occupancy also was indicative of cliff quality. Features of high quality habitat included tall cliffs, greater change in elevation from the lowest point within 3 km of the cliff to the cliff top (elevation gain), and protection from weather on the eyrie ledge. Spacing of suitable and occupied cliffs also was an important feature, and the best cliffs generally were more isolated. Increased spacing was likely a mechanism for reducing intraspecific competition. Our results suggest that Peregrine Falcons use a resource defense strategy to compete for better quality habitats and may use spacing and physical features of a nest site to identify good quality breeding habitat.

  17. Influence of habitat heterogeneity on distribution, occupancy patterns, and productivity of breeding peregrine falcons in central West Greenland

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Wightman, C.S.; Fuller, M.R.

    2006-01-01

    We used occupancy and productivity data collected at 67 cliffs used for nesting from 1972 to 1999 to assess patterns of distribution and nest-site selection in an increasing population of Peregrine Falcons (Falco peregrinus) in central West Greenland. Peregrine Falcons breeding at traditionally occupied cliffs used for nesting had significantly lower variation in productivity and thus these cliffs were better quality sites. This indicates that Peregrine Falcons occupied cliffs according to a pattern of despotic distribution. Falcons breeding at cliffs that were consistently occupied during the breeding season had higher average productivity and lower variation in productivity than falcons at inconsistently occupied cliffs, and thus consistent occupancy also was indicative of cliff quality. Features of high quality habitat included tall cliffs, greater change in elevation from the lowest point within 3 km of the cliff to the cliff top (elevation gain), and protection from weather on the eyrie ledge. Spacing of suitable and occupied cliffs also was an important feature, and the best cliffs generally were more isolated. Increased spacing was likely a mechanism for reducing intraspecific competition. Our results suggest that Peregrine Falcons use a resource defense strategy to compete for better quality habitats and may use spacing and physical features of a nest site to identify good quality breeding habitat. ?? The Cooper Ornithological Society 2006.

  18. Roadside versus remote: Is the habitat sampled by the Breeding Bird Survey in Maryland representative of statewide conditions?

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Boone, D.D.; Sauer, J.R.; Thomas, I.

    2000-01-01

    The North American Breeding Bird Survey (BBS) has received criticism that the bird habitat sampled along the 24.5 mile long roadside transects may not be proportional to regional totals. If true, trends in bird populations recorded by the BBS may not be sensitive predictors of regional or continental change in songbird abundance. To test whether the approximately 60 BBS routes in Maryland representatively sample the state's habitat, a geographic information system (GIS) database was compiled of significant bird habitat identified from remotely sensed landcover and land-use information (e.g., Multi-Resolution Land Characteristics Consortiumclassified Landsat Thematic Mapper imagery, etc.). These GIS data layers were analyzed to determine the statewide acreage of identified habitats as well as the acreage in each of the major physiographic regions of Maryland. Regional and statewide totals were also extracted for the subsample of habitat within 30 m of the BBS transects. The results of the comparison of regional and statewide habitat totals with the BBS sample showed very low proportional difference for nearly all of the identified habitat parameters. For Maryland and perhaps other urbanizing states, the BBS provides an accurate sample of available songbird habitats.

  19. Effects of habitat change along Breeding Bird Survey routes in the central Appalachians on Cerulean Warbler population

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    McElhone, P.; Wood, P.W.; Dawson, D.

    2007-01-01

    The cerulean warbler (Dendroica cerulea) is one of the highest priority bird species in the eastern United States because populations have declined 4.3% annually during 1966?2005 based on Breeding Bird Survey (BBS) data. Habitat loss and fragmentation due to land use changes is thought to be one of the major factors contributing to the decline. BBS routes, the primary source for monitoring bird population trends, include 50 sampling stops every 0.8 km. Although data from BBS routes are extrapolated to determine regional trends in bird populations, it is important to understand the effects of habitat changes at the stop-level along BBS routes. Route-level analysis of habitat changes may mask important changes that are occurring at a smaller scale particularly for the cerulean warbler which displays several micro-scale habitat preferences. We are examining cerulean warbler habitat and population changes in its core breeding range of the Ohio Hills and Cumberland Plateau physiographic regions. We quantified land cover changes within 300 m of BBS routes in the core cerulean warbler breeding range of Ohio, West Virginia, and Kentucky by digitizing aerial photographs from two time periods: the 1980s and 2004. We also quantified land cover changes within 300 m of BBS routes with the National Land Cover Dataset (NLCD) from 1992 and 2001. The hand-digitized aerial photos will be compared with the NLCD to determine how similar the two methods are in quantifying land cover changes. We then compared stop-level land cover changes with stop level changes in cerulean warbler detections within the same time periods along the BBS routes. This will allow for a more detailed analysis of how well habitat changes along BBS routes reflect the changes in cerulean warbler populations.

  20. Field Review of Fish Habitat Improvement Projects in Central Idaho.

    SciTech Connect

    Beschta, Robert L.; Griffith, Jack; Wesche, Thomas A.

    1993-05-01

    The goal of this field review was to provide information to the Bonneville Power Administration (BPA) regarding previous and ongoing fish habitat improvement projects in central Idaho. On July 14, 1992, the review team met at the Sawtooth National Recreation Area office near Ketchum, Idaho, for a slide presentation illustrating several habitat projects during their construction phases. Following the slide presentation, the review team inspected fish habitat projects that have been implemented in the last several years in the Stanley Basin and adjacent valleys. At each site the habitat project was described to the field team and a brief period for project inspection followed. The review team visited approximately a dozen sites on the Challis, Sawtooth, and Boise National Forests over a period of approximately two and a half days. There are two objectives of this review namely to summarize observations for specific field sites and to provide overview commentary regarding the BPA habitat improvement program in central Idaho.

  1. Effects of the North Atlantic Oscillation on sea ice breeding habitats of harp seals ( Pagophilus groenlandicus) across the North Atlantic

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Friedlaender, Ari S.; Johnston, David W.; Halpin, Patrick N.

    2010-07-01

    Harp seals ( Pagophilus groenlandicus) are an abundant and commercially exploited species of phocid seal in the North Atlantic. Harp seals are entirely dependent on annual sea ice for breeding purposes and the distribution, abundance, and constitution of sea ice in this region are subject to tremendous interannual variability. As such, harp seal population dynamics are likely intimately tied to climate variability and global change. We used satellite-derived images of sea ice cover to determine trends in available habitat at the four major harp seal breeding areas in the North Atlantic, and assessed linkages amongst sea ice conditions and variability in the North Atlantic Oscillation (NAO) during 1978-2006. The White Sea breeding area had the highest annual ice concentrations, while the Gulf of St. Lawrence and Front regions were the most variable over time. We confirmed a consistent positive correlation between the NAO index and the amount of sea ice cover in Western North Atlantic breeding areas off Canada. Furthermore, we found an opposite and consistent negative correlation between the NAO and sea ice cover in the eastern-most breeding areas, leading to an out-of-phase signal between the Western and Eastern (particularly the White Sea) North Atlantic. These results indicate that sea ice dynamics in the breeding regions of harp seals are controlled, to some extent, by the phase of the NAO and its effects on weather across the North Atlantic. Previous studies indicate that poor ice conditions can have negative effects on harp seal survival and the consistent relationships between breeding habitat and NAO conditions that are described here have implications for both the biology and management of harp seal populations.

  2. TILLING in forage grasses for gene discovery and breeding improvement.

    PubMed

    Manzanares, Chloe; Yates, Steven; Ruckle, Michael; Nay, Michelle; Studer, Bruno

    2016-09-25

    Mutation breeding has a long-standing history and in some major crop species, many of the most important cultivars have their origin in germplasm generated by mutation induction. For almost two decades, methods for TILLING (Targeting Induced Local Lesions IN Genomes) have been established in model plant species such as Arabidopsis (Arabidopsis thaliana L.), enabling the functional analysis of genes. Recent advances in mutation detection by second generation sequencing technology have brought its utility to major crop species. However, it has remained difficult to apply similar approaches in forage and turf grasses, mainly due to their outbreeding nature maintained by an efficient self-incompatibility system. Starting with a description of the extent to which traditional mutagenesis methods have contributed to crop yield increase in the past, this review focuses on technological approaches to implement TILLING-based strategies for the improvement of forage grass breeding through forward and reverse genetics. We present first results from TILLING in allogamous forage grasses for traits such as stress tolerance and evaluate prospects for rapid implementation of beneficial alleles to forage grass breeding. In conclusion, large-scale induced mutation resources, used for forward genetic screens, constitute a valuable tool to increase the genetic diversity for breeding and can be generated with relatively small investments in forage grasses. Furthermore, large libraries of sequenced mutations can be readily established, providing enhanced opportunities to discover mutations in genes controlling traits of agricultural importance and to study gene functions by reverse genetics. PMID:26924175

  3. Post-breeding habitat use by adult Boreal Toads (Bufo boreas) after wildfire in Glacier National Park, USA

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Guscio, C.G.; Hossack, B.R.; Eby, L.A.; Corn, P.S.

    2008-01-01

    Effects of wildfire on amphibians are complex, and some species may benefit from the severe disturbance of stand-replacing fire. Boreal Toads (Bufo boreas boreas) in Glacier National Park, Montana, USA increased in occurrence after fires in 2001 and 2003. We used radio telemetry to track adult B. boreas in a mosaic of terrestrial habitats with different burn severities to better understand factors related to the post-fire pulse in breeding activity. Toads used severely burned habitats more than expected and partially burned habitats less than expected. No toads were relocated in unburned habitat, but little of the study area was unburned and the expected number of observations in unburned habitat was < 3. High vagility of B. boreas and preference for open habitats may predispose this species to exploit recently disturbed landscapes. The long-term consequences of fire suppression likely have had different effects in different parts of the range of B. boreas. More information is needed, particularly in the northern Rocky Mountains, where toads are more likely to occupy habitats that have diverged from historic fire return intervals. Copyright ?? 2008. C. Gregory Guscio. All rights reserved.

  4. Household disposables as breeding habitats of dengue vectors: Linking wastes and public health

    SciTech Connect

    Banerjee, Soumyajit; Aditya, Gautam; Saha, Goutam K

    2013-01-15

    are most frequently disposed off contributed largely to the sustenance of Aedes mosquito population in the city. This calls for a strict legislation towards disposal as well as enhanced management of the household wastes. A link between the wastes disposed and subsequent conversion to the mosquito larval habitats cautions for continuance of Aedes population and possibility of dengue epidemics if the existing management practices are not improved.

  5. Breeding of tomorrow's chickens to improve well-being.

    PubMed

    Cheng, H-W

    2010-04-01

    Chickens, as well as other animals, have the ability to change their behavior (behavioral plasticity) and physiology (physiological plasticity) based on the costs and benefits to fit their environment (adaptation). Through natural selection, the population preserves and accumulates traits that are beneficial and rejects those that are detrimental in their prevailing environments. The surviving populations are able to contribute more genes associated with beneficial traits for increased fitness to subsequent generations. Natural selection is slow but constant; working over multiple generations, the changes to the population often appear silent or undetectable at a given point in history. Chickens were domesticated from the wild red jungle fowl. The principle of domestication of chickens, as well as other farm animals, by humans is similar to that of natural selection: selecting the best animals with the highest survivability and reproducibility (artificial selection). Compared with natural selection, the process of artificial selection is motivated by human needs and acts more rapidly with more visible results over a short time period. This process has been further accelerated following the development of current breeding programs and the emergence of specialized breeding companies. A laying hen, for example, produces more than 300 hundred eggs a year, whereas a jungle fowl lays 4 to 6 eggs in a year. During the domestication process, chickens retained their capability to adapt to their housing environments, which is usually achieved by genetic changes occurring with each subsequent generation. Genes control the behavioral, physiological, immunological, and psychological responses of animals to stressors, including environmental stimulations. With advances in understanding of genetic mediation of animal physiology and behavior and the discovery of the genome sequences of many species, animal production breeding programs can be improved in both speed and efficiency

  6. Breeding and biotechnology for improving berry nutritional quality.

    PubMed

    Scalzo, Jessica; Battino, Maurizio; Costantini, Elisa; Mezzetti, Bruno

    2005-01-01

    Breeding and biotechnological approaches are currently used to increase the content of specific bioactive components of plants, but the manipulation of plant metabolism is still not easy to address. There is an increasing awareness that multiple genetic and environmental factors affect production and accumulation of bioactive compounds, but these factors are rarely taken into account when fruit is marketed. Rigorous and unprejudiced evaluation of scientific evidence requires a defined set of criteria and methods of evaluation, particularly when breeding and biotech programs are aimed of producing new varieties with improved nutritional values combined with high plant production efficiency and fruit quality. In order to develop new genotypes and commercial cultivars the availability of new sources of Quality Attributes (QA) and Nutritional Attributes (NA) should be explored. In the strawberry, wild species such as F. virginiana glauca and F. vesca are good sources of bioactive compounds, but in raspberries the introduction of the wild germplasm (R. parvifolium) did not improve the nutritional quality of fruit. The methods available for detecting fruit TAC, combined with TPH and other quality parameters such as sugars, total acidity and fruit color, can be proposed as excellent tools for developing a fast and reliable program for screening large breeding populations for high nutritional quality genotypes. Furthermore, NA can represent a useful tool to facilitate analysis of "substantial equivalence" of transgenic and control derived fruit. PMID:16498208

  7. Effects of breeding versus winter habitat loss and fragmentation on the population dynamics of a migratory songbird.

    PubMed

    Taylor, Caz M; Stutchbury, Bridget J M

    2016-03-01

    Many migratory species are in decline and understanding these declines is challenging because individuals occupy widely divergent and geographically distant habitats during a single year and therefore populations across the range are interconnected in complex ways. Network modeling has been used to show, theoretically, that shifts in migratory connectivity patterns can occur in response to habitat or climate changes and that habitat loss in one region can affect sub-populations in regions that are not directly connected. Here, we use a network model, parameterized by integrating long-term monitoring data with direct tracking of -100 individuals, to explain population trends in the rapidly declining Wood Thrush (Hylocichla mustelina) and to predict future trends. Our model suggests that species-level declines in Wood Thrush are driven primarily by tropical deforestation in Central America but that protection of breeding habitat in some regions is necessary to prevent shifts in migratory connectivity and to sustain populations in all breeding regions. The model illustrates how shifts in migratory connectivity may lead to unexpected population declines in key regions. We highlight current knowledge gaps that make modeling full life-cycle population demographics in migratory species challenging but also demonstrate that modeling can inform conservation while these gaps are being filled. PMID:27209785

  8. A Study of the Effects of Gas Well Compressor Noise on Breeding Bird Populations of the Rattlesnake Canyon Habitat Management Area, San Juan County, New Mexico

    SciTech Connect

    LaGory, K.E.; Chang, Young-Soo; Chun, K.C.; Reeves, T.; Liebich, R.; Smith, K.

    2001-06-04

    This report, conducted from May through July 2000, addressed the potential effect of compressor noise on breeding birds in gas-production areas administered by the FFO, specifically in the Rattlesnake Canyon Habitat Management Area northeast of Farmington, New Mexico. The study was designed to quantify and characterize noise output from these compressors and to determine if compressor noise affected bird populations in adjacent habitat during the breeding season.

  9. Breeding habitat preference of preimaginal black flies (Diptera: Simuliidae) in Peninsular Malaysia.

    PubMed

    Ya'cob, Zubaidah; Takaoka, Hiroyuki; Pramual, Pairot; Low, Van Lun; Sofian-Azirun, Mohd

    2016-01-01

    To investigate the breeding habitat preference of black flies, a comprehensive black fly survey was conducted for the first time in Peninsular Malaysia. Preimaginal black flies (pupae and larvae) were collected manually from 180 stream points encompassing northern, southern, central and east coast of the Peninsular Malaysia. A total of 47 black fly species were recorded in this study. The predominant species were Simulium trangense (36.7%) and Simulium angulistylum (33.3%). Relatively common species were Simulium cheongi (29.4%), Simulium tani (25.6%), Simulium nobile (16.2%), Simulium sheilae (14.5%) and Simulium bishopi (10.6%). Principal Component Analysis (PCA) of all stream variables revealed four PCs that accounted for 69.3% of the total intersite variance. Regression analysis revealed that high species richness is associated with larger, deeper, faster and higher discharge streams with larger streambed particles, more riparian vegetation and low pH (F=22.7, d.f.=1, 173; P<0.001). Relationship between species occurrence of seven common species (present in >10% of the sampling sites) was assessed. Forward logistic regression analysis indicated that four species were significantly related to the stream variables. S. nobile and S. tani prefer large, fast flowing streams with higher pH, large streambed particles and riparian trees. S. bishopi was commonly found at high elevation with cooler stream, low conductivity, higher conductivity and more riparian trees. In contrast, S. sheilae was negatively correlated with PC-2, thus, this species commonly found at low elevation, warmer stream with low conductivity and less riparian trees. The results of this study are consistent with previous studies from other geographic regions, which indicated that both physical and chemical stream conditions are the key factors for black fly ecology. PMID:26476394

  10. [Breeding habitat characteristics of red-crowned crane at Zhalong of Northeast China: a multi-scale approach based on TM and ASAR image data].

    PubMed

    Liu, Chun-Yue; Jiang, Hong-Xing; Zhang, Shu-Qing; Hou, Yun-Qiu; Lu, Jun

    2012-02-01

    Based on the Landsat TM and Envisat ASAR HH/HV imagery data and by using the GPS data of red-crowned crane nesting sites (n = 28) at Zhalong National Nature Reserve of Northeast China, the models of the breeding habitat selection of red-crowned crane at the Reserve were established by binary Logistic regression to identify the key variables for the habitat selection at eight spatial scales (30-240 m). The relative performance of the two models based on the Landsat TM and Envisat ASAR HH/HV databases was compared, and the prediction capacity of the models across the eight scales was approached. The overall precisions of the two models were satisfactory (> or = 69.0%). At scale 30 m, only variable TCA_2 entered with negative value into the model based on Landsat TM database, which indicated that the crane at this scale avoided selecting higher density reed marshes. At scales 60-120 m, the variable PCA_2 entered with positive value into the two models, indicating that the crane at these scales had higher demand of high density reed marshes to improve its concealment. At scale 90 m, the variable HV backward scatting coefficient also entered into the combined model, which indicated that water condition was the important factor for the habitat selection of the crane at this scale. At scales > 120 m, the texture information of the two satellite sensors started to be involved into the two models, indicating that at larger scales, the crane had decreasing demand on the vegetation features for its breeding habitat selection but increasing sensitivity to the anthropogenic disturbance factors. The introduction of ASAR variables into the models increased the prediction accuracy of the models markedly at all scales. PMID:22586977

  11. Umatilla River Subbasin Fish Habitat Improvement Program, 2005 Annual Report.

    SciTech Connect

    St. Hilaire, Danny R.

    2006-05-01

    This annual report is in fulfillment of contractual obligations with Bonneville Power Administration (BPA), which is the funding source for the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife's (ODFW), Umatilla River Subbasin Fish Habitat Improvement Program (Program). The Program works cooperatively with private landowners to develop long-term restoration agreements, under which, passive and active Habitat Improvement Projects are conducted. Historically, projects have included livestock exclusion fencing (passive restoration) to protect riparian habitats, along with the installation of instream structures (active restoration) to address erosion and improve fish habitat conditions. In recent years, the focus of active restoration has shifted to bioengineering treatments and, more recently, to channel re-design and re-construction aimed at improving fish habitat, through the restoration of stable channel function. This report provides a summary of Program activities for the 2005 calendar year (January 1 through December 31, 2005), within each of the four main project phases, including: (1) Implementation--Pre-Work, (2) Implementation--On Site Development, (3) Operation and Maintenance (O&M), and (4) Monitoring and Evaluation (M&E). This report also summarizes activities associated with Program Administration, Interagency Coordination, and Public Education.

  12. Breeding habitat use by sympatric and allopatric populations of Wilson's Warblers and Yellow Warblers

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Ruth, J.M.; Stanley, T.R.

    2002-01-01

    We studied Wilson's Warbler (Wilsonia pusilla) and Yellow Warbler (Dendroica petechia) habitat use in allopatric and sympatric populations in the Rocky Mountains of northern Colorado and southeastern Wyoming in order to better understand the different habitat needs and interactions of these two species. Foraging Wilson's Warblers and Yellow Warblers used very similar habitat, both selecting larger, more open shrubs. In spite of similar foraging habitat, comparisons of habitat use by the two species at the sympatric sites yielded no evidence of foraging habitat partitioning or exclusion. There was evidence of nesting habitat partitioning. Wilson's Warblers nested on the ground, with some evidence that they used smaller, more densely stemmed shrubs under which to nest. Yellow Warblers are shrub nesters and selected larger, more open shrubs in which to nest. Results provide no evidence that Yellow Warblers can be blamed for population declines in Wilson's Warblers.

  13. Effects of stop-level habitat change on cerulean warbler detections along breeding bird survey routes in the central appalachians

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    McElhone, P.M.; Wood, P.B.; Dawson, D.K.

    2011-01-01

    We examined the effects of habitat change on Cerulean Warbler (Dendroica cerulea) populations at stops along Breeding Bird Survey (BBS) routes in the central Appalachians. We used aerial photographs to compare early (1967/1971), middle (1982/1985), and late (2000/2003) periods and compared 1992 and 2001 National Land Cover Data (NLCD). Mean Cerulean Warbler detections per stop decreased at 68 BBS stops between the early (0.05) and middle (0.01) time periods and their distribution became more restricted (15 vs. 3% of stops), but the amount of deciduous/mixed forest increased. Mean detections at 240 stops decreased from the middle (0.09) to the late (0.06) time periods, but the deciduous/mixed forest land cover and fragmentation metrics did not change. The amounts of deciduous/mixed forest, core forest area, and edge density in the NLCD analysis decreased from 1992 to 2001, whereas the amount of non-forest land cover increased. The number of Cerulean Warbler detections did not change (1992 ?=? 0.08, 2001 ?=? 0.10; P ?=? 0.11). The lack of concordance between Cerulean Warbler detections and broad habitat features suggests that smaller, microhabitat features may be most important in affecting Cerulean Warbler breeding habitat suitability. ?? 2011 by the Wilson Ornithological Society.

  14. Molecular Breeding for Improved Second Generation Bioenergy Crops.

    PubMed

    Allwright, Mike R; Taylor, Gail

    2016-01-01

    There is increasing urgency to develop and deploy sustainable sources of energy to reduce our global dependency on finite, high-carbon fossil fuels. Lignocellulosic feedstocks, used in power and liquid fuel generation, are valuable sources of non-food plant biomass. They are cultivated with minimal inputs on marginal or degraded lands to prevent competition with arable agriculture and offer significant potential for sustainable intensification (the improvement of yield without the necessity for additional inputs) through advanced molecular breeding. This article explores progress made in next generation sequencing, advanced genotyping, association genetics, and genetic modification in second generation bioenergy production. Using poplar as an exemplar where most progress has been made, a suite of target traits is also identified giving insight into possible routes for crop improvement and deployment in the immediate future. PMID:26541073

  15. Umatilla River Subbasin Fish Habitat Improvement Project, 1989 Annual Report.

    SciTech Connect

    Bailey, Timothy D.

    1989-01-01

    This annual report is in fulfillment of contract obligations with Bonneville Power Administration which is the Funding source for the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife's Umatilla Basin Habitat Improvement Project. The major activities undertaken during this report period were: procurement of 17 cooperative lease agreements with private landowners, design and layout of 8.6 miles of Riparian enclosure fence and 3.0 miles of instream structures, development of five fencing contracts and six instream work contracts. Results include implementation of 10 miles of fencing and 3 miles of instream work. Other activities undertaken during this report period are: data collection from 90 habitat monitoring transects, collection and summarization of temperature data, photopoint establishment, coordination with numerous agencies and tribes and education of all age groups on habitat improvement and protection.

  16. Breeding ecology and nesting habitat associations of five marsh bird species in western New York

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Lor, S.; Malecki, R.A.

    2006-01-01

    Nesting habitats and nest success of five species of marsh birds were studied during 1997 and 1998 at the Iroquois National Wildlife Refuge (NWR) and the adjacent Oak Orchard and Tonawanda State Wildlife Management Areas (WMA) located in western New York. Nest searches located 18 American Bittern (Botaurus lentiginosus), 117 Least Bittern (Ixobrychus exilis), 189 Pied-billed Grebe (Podilymbus podiceps), 23 Sora (Porzana carolina), and 72 Virginia Rail (Rallus limicola) nests. Average nest densities in 1998, our best nest searching year, ranged from 0.01/ha for Soras (N = 8) to 0.28/ha for Pied-billed Grebes (N = 160). Mayfield nest success estimates for Least Bittern were 80% (N = 16) in 1997 and 46% (N = 37) in 1998. Nest success estimates were 72% (N = 55) for Pied-billed Grebe, 43% (N = 6) for Sora, and 38% (N = 20) for Virginia Rail. Nests of all five species were located in ???70% emergent vegetation with a mean water depth of 24-56 cm and an average vegetation height that ranged from 69-133 cm. Logistic regression models were developed for each species using habitat variables at nest and random site locations. Each model was ranked with Akaike's Information Criterion for small sample size (AICc). In general, our best models indicated that increased emergent vegetation and horizontal cover with shallow water depths improved the odds of encountering marsh bird nests in the wetlands of western New York. We suggest that managing wetlands as a complex, at different stages of succession, would best benefit marsh bird species.

  17. Impact of fenoxycarb, a carbamate insect growth regulator, on some aquatic invertebrates abundant in mosquito breeding habitats.

    PubMed

    Miura, T; Takahashi, R M

    1987-09-01

    The insect growth regulator, Fenoxycarb, induced various morphogenetic aberrations in Notonecta unifasciata, Anax junius and Pantala hymenaea after treatment of late nymphal stages. Most affected nymphs died while molting from nymphs to adults. Fenoxycarb is also ovicidal to young eggs of N. unifasciata. The treatment rate of 0.034 kg AI/ha fenoxycarb induced some reduction in N. unifasciata population densities and produced a few morphogenetic abnormalities in some Odonata. However, planktonic organisms and aquatic beetles regularly found in the mosquito breeding habitats showed no deleterious effect. PMID:3504932

  18. Oak Grove Fork Habitat Improvement Project, 1988 Annual Report.

    SciTech Connect

    Bettin, Scott

    1989-04-01

    The Lower Oak Grove Fork of the Clackamas River is a fifth-order tributary of the Clackamas River drainage supporting depressed runs of coho and chinook salmon, and summer and winter steelhead. Habitat condition rating for the Lower Oak Grove is good, but smelt production estimates are below the average for Clackamas River tributaries. Limiting factors in the 3.8 miles of the Lower Oak Grove supporting anadromous fish include an overall lack of quality spawning and rearing habitat. Beginning in 1986. measures to improve fish habitat in the Lower Oak Grove were developed in coordination with the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife (ODF&W) and Portland General Electric (PGE) fisheries biologists. Prior to 1986, no measures had been applied to the stream to mitigate for PGE's storage and regulation of flows in the Oak Grove Fork (Timothy Lake, Harriet Lake). Catchable rainbow trout are stocked by ODF&W two or three times a year during the trout fishing season in the lowermost portion of the Oak Grove Fork near two Forest Service campgrounds (Ripplebrook and Rainbow). The 1987 field season marked the third year of efforts to improve fish habitat of the Lower Oak Grove Fork and restore anadromous fish production. The efforts included the development of an implementation plan for habitat improvement activities in the Lower Oak Grove Fork. post-project monitoring. and maintenance of the 1986 improvement structures. No new structures were constructed or placed in 1987. Fiscal year 1988 brought a multitude of changes which delayed implementation of plans developed in 1987. The most prominent change was the withdrawal of the proposed Spotted Owl Habitat Area (SOHA) which overlapped the Oak Grove project implementation area. Another was the change in the Forest Service biologist responsible for implementation and design of this project.

  19. Rainforest birds: A land manager's guide to breeding bird habitat in young conifer forests in the Pacific Northwest

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Altman, Bob; Hagar, Joan

    2007-01-01

    An underlying premise of the Guide is that forest management has a direct and significant influence on bird populations. Consequently, manipulation of forest conditions as part of forest management can be designed and implemented to achieve bird conservation objectives (Busing and Garman, 2002; Lehmkuhl and others, 2002). It is not our intent to describe all the potential forest management activities that could be conducted to achieve the desired habitat conditions for birds. Those need to be determined locally by assessing the most ecologically appropriate management at each site. However, to assist land managers, the Guide offers some basic forest management activities that are widely accepted for achieving habitat conditions and features which benefit breeding birds.

  20. The use of local indicators of spatial association to improve LiDAR-derived predictions of potential amphibian breeding ponds

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Julian, J.T.; Young, J.A.; Jones, J.W.; Snyder, C.D.; Wright, C.W.

    2009-01-01

    We examined whether spatially explicit information improved models that use LiDAR return signal intensity to discriminate in-pond habitat from terrestrial habitat at 24 amphibian breeding ponds. The addition of Local Indicators of Spatial Association (LISA) to LiDAR return intensity data significantly improved predictive models at all ponds, reduced residual error by as much as 74%, and appeared to improve models by reducing classification errors associated with types of in-pond vegetation. We conclude that LISA statistics can help maximize the information content that can be extracted from time resolved LiDAR return data in models that predict the occurrence of small, seasonal ponds. ?? Springer-Verlag 2008.

  1. The influence of habitat, prey abundance, sex, and breeding success on the ranging behavior of Prairie Falcons

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Marzluff, J.M.; Kimsey, Bryan A.; Schueck, Linda S.; McFadzen, Mary E.; Vekasy, M.S.; Bednarz, James C.

    1997-01-01

    We studied the ranging behavior and habitat selection of radio-tagged Prairie Falcons (Falco mexicanus) during the breeding season in southwestern Idaho. The distribution and numbers of Townsend's ground squirrels (Spermophilus townsendii), the primary prey of Prairie Falcons in our study area, varied in response to drought during the study period. Prairie Falcons ranged over large areas (ca. 300 km2) and increased their foraging ranges in response to declining ground squirrels. Reptiles and birds were preyed upon most frequently when squirrels were rare. Males and females differed little in their use of space. Successful pairs ranged over smaller areas than non-nesters and unsuccessful pairs. Falcons nesting near habitat most suitable for ground squirrels ranged over smaller areas than those nesting farther from such habitat. Home ranges contained significantly more winterfat (Ceratoides lanata) and native perennial grasses (especially Poa secunda), and significantly less salt desert shrubs and exotic annual grasses than expected based on availability. Salt desert shrubs were found less than expected, based on availability in core areas within home ranges. Selection for winterfat and bluegrass in core areas was contingent upon selection at the larger scale of the home range; falcons with home ranges containing more winterfat and bluegrass than expected based on availability were less selective in their placement of core areas with respect to these habitats. We believe salient features of Prairie Falcon home ranges result largely from patchy distribution of landscape features associated with different densities and availabilities of Townsend's ground squirrels.

  2. Climate change, breeding date and nestling diet: how temperature differentially affects seasonal changes in pied flycatcher diet depending on habitat variation.

    PubMed

    Burger, Claudia; Belskii, Eugen; Eeva, Tapio; Laaksonen, Toni; Mägi, Marko; Mänd, Raivo; Qvarnström, Anna; Slagsvold, Tore; Veen, Thor; Visser, Marcel E; Wiebe, Karen L; Wiley, Chris; Wright, Jonathan; Both, Christiaan

    2012-07-01

    1. Climate warming has led to shifts in the seasonal timing of species. These shifts can differ across trophic levels, and as a result, predator phenology can get out of synchrony with prey phenology. This can have major consequences for predators such as population declines owing to low reproductive success. However, such trophic interactions are likely to differ between habitats, resulting in differential susceptibility of populations to increases in spring temperatures. A mismatch between breeding phenology and food abundance might be mitigated by dietary changes, but few studies have investigated this phenomenon. Here, we present data on nestling diets of nine different populations of pied flycatchers Ficedula hypoleuca, across their breeding range. This species has been shown to adjust its breeding phenology to local climate change, but sometimes insufficiently relative to the phenology of their presumed major prey: Lepidoptera larvae. In spring, such larvae have a pronounced peak in oak habitats, but to a much lesser extent in coniferous and other deciduous habitats. 2. We found strong seasonal declines in the proportions of caterpillars in the diet only for oak habitats, and not for the other forest types. The seasonal decline in oak habitats was most strongly observed in warmer years, indicating that potential mismatches were stronger in warmer years. However, in coniferous and other habitats, no such effect of spring temperature was found. 3. Chicks reached somewhat higher weights in broods provided with higher proportions of caterpillars, supporting the notion that caterpillars are an important food source and that the temporal match with the caterpillar peak may represent an important component of reproductive success. 4. We suggest that pied flycatchers breeding in oak habitats have greater need to adjust timing of breeding to rising spring temperatures, because of the strong seasonality in their food. Such between-habitat differences can have

  3. Unravelling the annual cycle in a migratory animal: breeding-season habitat loss drives population declines of monarch butterflies.

    PubMed

    Flockhart, D T Tyler; Pichancourt, Jean-Baptiste; Norris, D Ryan; Martin, Tara G

    2015-01-01

    Threats to migratory animals can occur at multiple periods of the annual cycle that are separated by thousands of kilometres and span international borders. Populations of the iconic monarch butterfly (Danaus plexippus) of eastern North America have declined over the last 21 years. Three hypotheses have been posed to explain the decline: habitat loss on the overwintering grounds in Mexico, habitat loss on the breeding grounds in the United States and Canada, and extreme weather events. Our objectives were to assess population viability, determine which life stage, season and geographical region are contributing the most to population dynamics and test the three hypotheses that explain the observed population decline. We developed a spatially structured, stochastic and density-dependent periodic projection matrix model that integrates patterns of migratory connectivity and demographic vital rates across the annual cycle. We used perturbation analysis to determine the sensitivity of population abundance to changes in vital rate among life stages, seasons and geographical regions. Next, we compared the singular effects of each threat to the full model where all factors operate concurrently. Finally, we generated predictions to assess the risk of host plant loss as a result of genetically modified crops on current and future monarch butterfly population size and extinction probability. Our year-round population model predicted population declines of 14% and a quasi-extinction probability (<1000 individuals) >5% within a century. Monarch abundance was more than four times more sensitive to perturbations of vital rates on the breeding grounds than on the wintering grounds. Simulations that considered only forest loss or climate change in Mexico predicted higher population sizes compared to milkweed declines on the breeding grounds. Our model predictions also suggest that mitigating the negative effects of genetically modified crops results in higher population size and

  4. Assessing greater sage-grouse breeding habitat with aerial and ground imagery

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Anthropogenic disturbances, wildfires, and weedy-plant invasions have destroyed and fragmented sagebrush (Artemisia L. spp.) habitats. Sagebrush-dependent species like greater sage-grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus; hereafter, sage-grouse) are vulnerable to these changes, emphasizing the importance ...

  5. Yakima Habitat Improvement Project Master Plan, Technical Report 2003.

    SciTech Connect

    Golder Associates, Inc.

    2003-04-22

    The Yakima Urban Growth Area (UGA) is a developing and growing urban area in south-central Washington. Despite increased development, the Yakima River and its tributaries within the UGA continue to support threatened populations of summer steelhead and bull trout as well as a variety of non-listed salmonid species. In order to provide for the maintenance and recovery of these species, while successfully planning for the continued growth and development within the UGA, the City of Yakima has undertaken the Yakima Habitat Improvement Project. The overall goal of the project is to maintain, preserve, and restore functioning fish and wildlife habitat within and immediately surrounding the Yakima UGA over the long term. Acquisition and protection of the fish and wildlife habitat associated with key properties in the UGA will prevent future subdivision along riparian corridors, reduce further degradation or removal of riparian habitat, and maintain or enhance the long term condition of aquatic habitat. By placing these properties in long-term protection, the threat of development from continued growth in the urban area will be removed. To most effectively implement the multi-year habitat acquisition and protection effort, the City has developed this Master Plan. The Master Plan provides the structure and guidance for future habitat acquisition and restoration activities to be performed within the Yakima Urban Area. The development of this Master Plan also supports several Reasonable and Prudent Alternatives (RPAs) of the NOAA Fisheries 2000 Biological Opinion (BiOp), as well as the Water Investment Action Agenda for the Yakima Basin, local planning efforts, and the Columbia Basin Fish and Wildlife Authority's 2000 Fish and Wildlife Program. This Master Plan also provides the framework for coordination of the Yakima Habitat Improvement Project with other fish and wildlife habitat acquisition and protection activities currently being implemented in the area. As a result of

  6. Use of Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI) habitat models to predict breeding birds on the San Pedro River, Arizona

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    McFarland, Tiffany Marie; van Riper, Charles, III

    2013-01-01

    Successful management practices of avian populations depend on understanding relationships between birds and their habitat, especially in rare habitats, such as riparian areas of the desert Southwest. Remote-sensing technology has become popular in habitat modeling, but most of these models focus on single species, leaving their applicability to understanding broader community structure and function largely untested. We investigated the usefulness of two Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI) habitat models to model avian abundance and species richness on the upper San Pedro River in southeastern Arizona. Although NDVI was positively correlated with our bird metrics, the amount of explained variation was low. We then investigated the addition of vegetation metrics and other remote-sensing metrics to improve our models. Although both vegetation metrics and remotely sensed metrics increased the power of our models, the overall explained variation was still low, suggesting that general avian community structure may be too complex for NDVI models.

  7. Effects of breeding habitat (woodland versus urban) and metal pollution on the egg characteristics of great tits (Parus major).

    PubMed

    Hargitai, Rita; Nagy, Gergely; Nyiri, Zoltán; Bervoets, Lieven; Eke, Zsuzsanna; Eens, Marcel; Török, János

    2016-02-15

    In an urban environment, birds are exposed to metals, which may accumulate in their tissues and cause oxidative stress. Female birds may eliminate these pollutants through depositing them into eggs, thus eggs become suitable bioindicators of pollution. In this study, we aimed to analyse whether eggshell spotting pattern, egg volume, eggshell thickness and egg yolk antioxidant (lutein, tocopherol, retinol and selenium) levels were related to the breeding area (woodland versus urban) and the metal levels in the eggshell of a small passerine species, the great tit (Parus major). In the urban habitat, soil and eggshells contained higher concentrations of metals, and soil calcium level was also higher than that in the woodland. Eggshell spotting intensity and egg volume did not differ between eggs laid in the woodland and the urban park, and these traits were not related to the metal levels of the eggshell, suggesting that these egg characteristics are not sensitive indicators of metal pollution. A more aggregated eggshell spotting distribution indicated a higher Cu concentration of the eggshell. We found that eggshells were thinner in the less polluted woodland habitat, which is likely due to the limited Ca availability of the woodland area. Great tit eggs laid in the urban environment had lower yolk lutein, retinol and selenium concentrations, however, as a possible compensation for these lower antioxidant levels, urban females deposited more tocopherol into the egg yolk. It appears that females from different breeding habitats may provide similar antioxidant protection for their offspring against oxidative damage by depositing different specific dietary antioxidants. Egg yolk lutein and retinol levels showed a negative relationship with lead concentration of the eggshell, which may suggest that lead had a negative impact on the amount of antioxidants available for embryos during development in great tits. PMID:26657247

  8. Influence of breeding habitat on bear predation and age at maturity and sexual dimorphism of sockeye salmon populations

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Quinn, Thomas P; Wetzel, Lisa A.; Bishop, Susan; Overberg, Kristi; Rogers, Donald E.

    2001-01-01

    Age structure and morphology differ among Pacific salmon (Oncorhynchus spp.) populations. Sexual selection and reproductive capacity (fecundity and egg size) generally favor large (old), deep-bodied fish. We hypothesized that natural selection from physical access to spawning grounds and size-biased predation by bears, Ursus spp., opposes such large, deep-bodied salmon. Accordingly, size and shape of salmon should vary predictably among spawning habitats. We tested this hypothesis by measuring the age composition and body depth of sockeye salmon, Oncorhynchus nerka, and the intensity of predation in a range of breeding habitats in southwestern Alaska. Stream width was positively correlated with age at maturity and negatively correlated with predation level. However, salmon spawning on lake beaches were not consistently old, indicating that different factors affect age in riverine- and beach-spawning populations. Body depths of male and female salmon were positively correlated with water depth across all sites, as predicted. However, the mouths of some streams were so shallow that they might select against large or deep-bodied salmon, even in the absence of bear predation. Taken together, the results indicated that habitat has direct and indirect effects (via predation) on life history and morphology of mature salmon.

  9. The contribution of traditional potato breeding to scientific potato improvement

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Conventional potato breeding refers to development of new cultivars from sexual crosses followed by clonal propagation and selection. Nearly all new varieties of potato still emerge from this process free from modern technologies of gene insertion. Conventional breeding remains the most important ...

  10. Applying Selective Breeding And Vaccination To Improve Fish Health

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Infectious disease causes substantial economic loss in aquaculture. In an effort to reduce loss, selective breeding of animals with superior disease resistance is being increasingly utilized as a component within fish health management plans. Selective breeding is especially applicable to salmonid ...

  11. Umatilla River Subbasin Fish Habitat Improvement Project, 1990 Annual Report.

    SciTech Connect

    Bailey, Timothy D.; Rimbach, Gregory P.

    1991-03-01

    This annual report is in fulfillment of contract obligations with Bonneville Power Administration which is the Funding source For the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife's Umatilla Basin Habitat Improvement Project. The major activities undertaken during this report period were: procurement of 6 cooperative lease agreements and one lease addendum with private landowners, design and layout of 4.4 miles of riparian exclosure fence and 1.75 miles of instream structures, development of three fencing contracts and three instream work contracts. Results include implementation of 3 miles of fencing and 3.7 miles of instream work. Other activities undertaken during this report period are: weekly inspection and maintenance of fencing projects, collection and summarization of temperature data, photopoint establishment, coordination with numerous agencies and tribes and education of high school students on habitat improvement and preservation.

  12. Umatilla Basin Habitat Improvement Project; 1990 Annual Report.

    SciTech Connect

    Bailey, Timothy D.; Rimbach, Gregory P.

    1991-03-01

    This annual report is in fulfillment of contract obligations with Bonneville Power Administration which is the Funding source For the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife's Umatilla Basin Habitat Improvement Project. The major activities undertaken during this report period were: procurement of 6 cooperative lease agreements and one lease addendum with private landowners, design and layout of 4.4 miles of riparian exclosure fence and 1.75 miles of instream structures, development of three fencing contracts and three instream work contracts. Results include implementation OF 3 miles of fencing and 3.7 miles of instream work. Other activities undertaken during this report period are: weekly inspection and maintenance of fencing projects, collection and summarization of temperature data, photopoint establishment, coordination with numerous agencies and tribes and education of high school students on habitat improvement and preservation.

  13. Breeding loggerhead marine turtles Caretta caretta in Dry Tortugas National Park, USA, show high fidelity to diverse habitats near nesting beaches

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Hart, Kristen M.; Zawada, David G.; Sartain-Iverson, Autumn R.; Fujisaki, Ikuko

    2016-01-01

    We used satellite telemetry to identify in-water habitat used by individuals in the smallest North-west Atlantic subpopulation of adult nesting loggerhead turtles Caretta caretta during the breeding season. During 2010, 2011 and 2012 breeding periods, a total of 20 adult females used habitats proximal to nesting beaches with various levels of protection within Dry Tortugas National Park. We then used a rapid, high-resolution, digital imaging system to map habitat adjacent to nesting beaches, revealing the diversity and distribution of available benthic cover. Turtle behaviour showing measurable site-fidelity to these diverse habitats has implications for managing protected areas and human activities within them. Protecting diverse benthic areas adjacent to loggerhead turtle nesting beaches here and elsewhere could provide benefits for overall biodiversity conservation.

  14. Habitat traits and species interactions differentially affect abundance and body size in pond-breeding amphibians.

    PubMed

    Ousterhout, Brittany H; Anderson, Thomas L; Drake, Dana L; Peterman, William E; Semlitsch, Raymond D

    2015-07-01

    In recent studies, habitat traits have emerged as stronger predictors of species occupancy, abundance, richness and diversity than competition. However, in many cases, it remains unclear whether habitat also mediates processes more subtle than competitive exclusion, such as growth, or whether intra- and interspecific interactions among individuals of different species may be better predictors of size. To test whether habitat traits are a stronger predictor of abundance and body size than intra- and interspecific interactions, we measured the density and body size of three species of larval salamanders in 192 ponds across a landscape. We found that the density of larvae was best predicted by models that included habitat features, while models incorporating interactions among individuals of different species best explained the body size of larvae. Additionally, we found a positive relationship between focal species density and congener density, while focal species body size was negatively related to congener density. We posit that salamander larvae may not experience competitive exclusion and thus reduced densities, but instead compensate for increased competition behaviourally (e.g. reduced foraging), resulting in decreased growth. The discrepancy between larval density and body size, a strong predictor of fitness in this system, also highlights a potential shortcoming in using density or abundance as a metric of habitat quality or population health. PMID:25643605

  15. Invasive parasites, habitat change and heavy rainfall reduce breeding success in Darwin's finches.

    PubMed

    Cimadom, Arno; Ulloa, Angel; Meidl, Patrick; Zöttl, Markus; Zöttl, Elisabet; Fessl, Birgit; Nemeth, Erwin; Dvorak, Michael; Cunninghame, Francesca; Tebbich, Sabine

    2014-01-01

    Invasive alien parasites and pathogens are a growing threat to biodiversity worldwide, which can contribute to the extinction of endemic species. On the Galápagos Islands, the invasive parasitic fly Philornis downsi poses a major threat to the endemic avifauna. Here, we investigated the influence of this parasite on the breeding success of two Darwin's finch species, the warbler finch (Certhidea olivacea) and the sympatric small tree finch (Camarhynchus parvulus), on Santa Cruz Island in 2010 and 2012. While the population of the small tree finch appeared to be stable, the warbler finch has experienced a dramatic decline in population size on Santa Cruz Island since 1997. We aimed to identify whether warbler finches are particularly vulnerable during different stages of the breeding cycle. Contrary to our prediction, breeding success was lower in the small tree finch than in the warbler finch. In both species P. downsi had a strong negative impact on breeding success and our data suggest that heavy rain events also lowered the fledging success. On the one hand parents might be less efficient in compensating their chicks' energy loss due to parasitism as they might be less efficient in foraging on days of heavy rain. On the other hand, intense rainfalls might lead to increased humidity and more rapid cooling of the nests. In the case of the warbler finch we found that the control of invasive plant species with herbicides had a significant additive negative impact on the breeding success. It is very likely that the availability of insects (i.e. food abundance)is lower in such controlled areas, as herbicide usage led to the removal of the entire understory. Predation seems to be a minor factor in brood loss. PMID:25248092

  16. Invasive Parasites, Habitat Change and Heavy Rainfall Reduce Breeding Success in Darwin's Finches

    PubMed Central

    Cimadom, Arno; Ulloa, Angel; Meidl, Patrick; Zöttl, Markus; Zöttl, Elisabet; Fessl, Birgit; Nemeth, Erwin; Dvorak, Michael; Cunninghame, Francesca; Tebbich, Sabine

    2014-01-01

    Invasive alien parasites and pathogens are a growing threat to biodiversity worldwide, which can contribute to the extinction of endemic species. On the Galápagos Islands, the invasive parasitic fly Philornis downsi poses a major threat to the endemic avifauna. Here, we investigated the influence of this parasite on the breeding success of two Darwin's finch species, the warbler finch (Certhidea olivacea) and the sympatric small tree finch (Camarhynchus parvulus), on Santa Cruz Island in 2010 and 2012. While the population of the small tree finch appeared to be stable, the warbler finch has experienced a dramatic decline in population size on Santa Cruz Island since 1997. We aimed to identify whether warbler finches are particularly vulnerable during different stages of the breeding cycle. Contrary to our prediction, breeding success was lower in the small tree finch than in the warbler finch. In both species P. downsi had a strong negative impact on breeding success and our data suggest that heavy rain events also lowered the fledging success. On the one hand parents might be less efficient in compensating their chicks' energy loss due to parasitism as they might be less efficient in foraging on days of heavy rain. On the other hand, intense rainfalls might lead to increased humidity and more rapid cooling of the nests. In the case of the warbler finch we found that the control of invasive plant species with herbicides had a significant additive negative impact on the breeding success. It is very likely that the availability of insects (i.e. food abundance)is lower in such controlled areas, as herbicide usage led to the removal of the entire understory. Predation seems to be a minor factor in brood loss. PMID:25248092

  17. Assessing greater sage-grouse breeding habitat with aerial and ground imagery

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Agricultural expansion, housing and energy developments, wildfires, and weedy plant invasions have led to loss and fragmentation of sagebrush (Artemisia spp.) habitats within the Intermountain West. Sagebrush-dependent species such as greater sage-grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus) are vulnerable t...

  18. PREDICTING HABITAT SUITABILITY FOR TWO BREEDS OF CATTLE (ENGLISH AND SPANISH) IN NORTHEASTERN OREGON PRAIRIE ECOSYSTEMS

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Eastern Oregon cattle distribution was studied with global positioning (GPS) collars for 2 years on the Zumwalt prairie in the spring and fall and Hells Canyon during the winter to determine distribution and habitat selection differences between Spanish bred (Corriente X Longhorn) and English bred c...

  19. Umatilla River Subbasin Fish Habitat Improvement; 1992 Annual Report.

    SciTech Connect

    Bailey, Timothy D.; Rimbach, Gregory P.

    1993-03-01

    This annual report is in fulfillment of contract obligations with Bonneville Power Administration which is the funding source for the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife's Umatilla Basin Habitat Improvement Project. The major activities undertaken during this report period were: (1) procurement of one cooperative lease agreement and one access easement with private landowners, (2) design and layout of 1.3 miles of riparian exclosure fence and 1.4 miles of instream structure maintenance, and (3) development of one fencing contract and three instream work contracts. Results include implementation of 1.9 miles of fencing, 1.4 miles of instream maintenance work, reconstruction of 0.75 miles of flood damaged fence, inspection and routine maintenance of 13.5 miles of fence, and planting of grasses, legumes and shrubs along 4.6 miles of stream. Other activities undertaken during this report period are: collection and summarization of temperature data, establishment and data collection from habitat monitoring transects, electrofishing surveys and spawning ground counts, photopoint establishment, coordination with numerous agencies and tribes and education of high school students on habitat improvement and preservation.

  20. Linking Deforestation to Malaria in the Amazon: Characterization of the Breeding Habitat of the Principal Malaria Vector, Anopheles darlingi

    PubMed Central

    Vittor, Amy Y.; Pan, William; Gilman, Robert H.; Tielsch, James; Glass, Gregory; Shields, Tim; Sánchez-Lozano, Wagner; Pinedo, Viviana V.; Salas-Cobos, Erit; Flores, Silvia; Patz, Jonathan A.

    2009-01-01

    This study examined the larval breeding habitat of a major South American malaria vector, Anopheles darlingi, in areas with varying degrees of ecologic alteration in the Peruvian Amazon. Water bodies were repeatedly sampled across 112 km of transects along the Iquitos-Nauta road in ecologically varied areas. Field data and satellite imagery were used to determine the landscape composition surrounding each site. Seventeen species of Anopheles larvae were collected. Anopheles darlingi larvae were present in 87 of 844 sites (10.3%). Sites with A. darlingi larvae had an average of 24.1% forest cover, compared with 41.0% for sites without A. darlingi (P < 0.0001). Multivariate analysis identified seasonality, algae, water body size, presence of human populations, and the amount of forest and secondary growth as significant determinants of A. darlingi presence. We conclude that deforestation and associated ecologic alterations are conducive to A. darlingi larval presence, and thereby increase malaria risk. PMID:19556558

  1. Umatilla River Subbasin Fish Habitat Improvement; 1995 Annual Report.

    SciTech Connect

    Laws, Troy S.

    1996-06-01

    This annual report is in fulfillment of contract obligations with Bonneville Power Administration which is the funding source for the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife`s Umatilla Basin Habitat Improvement Project. Major activities undertaken during this report period included: (1) Flood damage assessment of project leases after the May 1995 and November 1995 floods, (2) reconstruction of 0.75 miles of riparian fence, (3) inspection and routine maintenance of 14.8 miles of fence, (4) collection of approximately 55,000 native willow and cottonwood cuttings and installation of approximately 21,600 of these material, (5) implementation of two bioengineering projects and initiation of a third project, (6) installation of approximately 30 tree/rootwads for fish habitat enhancement, (7) removal of an abandoned flood irrigation dam/fish barrier, (8) collection and summarization of physical and biological monitoring data, and (9) extensive interagency coordination.

  2. Umatilla River Subbasin Fish Habitat Improvement; 1994 Annual Report.

    SciTech Connect

    Laws, Troy S.

    1995-06-01

    This annual report is in fulfillment of contract obligations with Bonneville Power Administration which is the funding source for the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife`s Umatilla Basin Habitat Improvement Project. Major activities undertaken during this report period included: 1) Flood damage assessment of project leases after the May 1994 flood, 2) reconstruction of 1.25 miles of high tensile steel fence, 3) inspection and routine maintenance of 14.8 miles of fence, 4) collection of approximately 6,600 cottonwood and willow cuttings for transplanting in spring of 1995, 5) establishment of three bioengineered habitat restoration demonstration projects, 6) Implementation of a streambank stabilization workshop (bioengineering techniques) for Umatilla Basin residents and resource agency personnel, 7) collection and summarization of physical and biological monitoring data, and 8) extensive interagency coordination.

  3. Climate Impacts on Sea Turtle Breeding Phenology in Greece and Associated Foraging Habitats in the Wider Mediterranean Region.

    PubMed

    Patel, Samir H; Morreale, Stephen J; Saba, Vincent S; Panagopoulou, Aliki; Margaritoulis, Dimitris; Spotila, James R

    2016-01-01

    Sea turtles are vulnerable to climate change impacts in both their terrestrial (nesting beach) and oceanic habitats. From 1982 to 2012, air and sea surface temperatures at major high use foraging and nesting regions (n = 5) of loggerhead turtles (Caretta caretta) nesting in Greece have steadily increased. Here, we update the established relationships between sea surface temperature and nesting data from Zakynthos (latitude: 37.7°N), a major nesting beach, while also expanding these analyses to include precipitation and air temperature and additional nesting data from two other key beaches in Greece: Kyparissia Bay (latitude: 37.3°N) and Rethymno, Crete (latitude: 35.4°N). We confirmed that nesting phenology at Zakynthos has continued to be impacted by breeding season temperature; however, temperature has no consistent relationship with nest numbers, which are declining on Zakynthos and Crete but increasing at Kyparissia. Then using statistically downscaled outputs of 14 climate models assessed by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), we projected future shifts in nesting for these populations. Based on the climate models, we projected that temperature at the key foraging and breeding sites (Adriatic Sea, Aegean Sea, Crete, Gulf of Gabès and Zakynthos/Kyparissia Bay; overall latitudinal range: 33.0°-45.8°N) for loggerhead turtles nesting in Greece will rise by 3-5°C by 2100. Our calculations indicate that the projected rise in air and ocean temperature at Zakynthos could cause the nesting season in this major rookery to shift to an earlier date by as much as 50-74 days by 2100. Although an earlier onset of the nesting season may provide minor relief for nest success as temperatures rise, the overall climatic changes to the various important habitats will most likely have an overall negative impact on this population. PMID:27332550

  4. Climate Impacts on Sea Turtle Breeding Phenology in Greece and Associated Foraging Habitats in the Wider Mediterranean Region

    PubMed Central

    Morreale, Stephen J.; Saba, Vincent S.; Panagopoulou, Aliki; Margaritoulis, Dimitris; Spotila, James R.

    2016-01-01

    Sea turtles are vulnerable to climate change impacts in both their terrestrial (nesting beach) and oceanic habitats. From 1982 to 2012, air and sea surface temperatures at major high use foraging and nesting regions (n = 5) of loggerhead turtles (Caretta caretta) nesting in Greece have steadily increased. Here, we update the established relationships between sea surface temperature and nesting data from Zakynthos (latitude: 37.7°N), a major nesting beach, while also expanding these analyses to include precipitation and air temperature and additional nesting data from two other key beaches in Greece: Kyparissia Bay (latitude: 37.3°N) and Rethymno, Crete (latitude: 35.4°N). We confirmed that nesting phenology at Zakynthos has continued to be impacted by breeding season temperature; however, temperature has no consistent relationship with nest numbers, which are declining on Zakynthos and Crete but increasing at Kyparissia. Then using statistically downscaled outputs of 14 climate models assessed by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), we projected future shifts in nesting for these populations. Based on the climate models, we projected that temperature at the key foraging and breeding sites (Adriatic Sea, Aegean Sea, Crete, Gulf of Gabès and Zakynthos/Kyparissia Bay; overall latitudinal range: 33.0°—45.8°N) for loggerhead turtles nesting in Greece will rise by 3–5°C by 2100. Our calculations indicate that the projected rise in air and ocean temperature at Zakynthos could cause the nesting season in this major rookery to shift to an earlier date by as much as 50–74 days by 2100. Although an earlier onset of the nesting season may provide minor relief for nest success as temperatures rise, the overall climatic changes to the various important habitats will most likely have an overall negative impact on this population. PMID:27332550

  5. Human residential status and habitat quality affect the likelihood but not the success of lapwing breeding in an urban matrix.

    PubMed

    Roche, Dylan V; Cardilini, Adam P A; Lees, Daniel; Maguire, Grainne S; Dann, Peter; Sherman, Craig D H; Weston, Michael A

    2016-06-15

    Wildlife living in the suburbs faces the challenge of dealing with human presence and yard management (including the occurrence of pets) which vary at the scale of the house block. This study examined the influence of ecological factors (e.g. extent of grass and food availability) and anthropogenic factors (e.g. human activity and garden usage) on breeding site choice and reproductive success of the ground-nesting masked lapwing Vanellus miles on Phillip Island, Australia. Lapwings nested less frequently in residential properties (high levels of human usage) compared with vacant blocks and holiday houses. They were also more likely to breed on properties with high food availability and larger areas of grass. None of these variables influenced clutch size or the probability of eggs hatching, although larger clutches and higher hatching rates tended to be associated with more food. This study shows that, for an urban exploiting species, habitat quality is not homogenous at the scale of the house block, and that human activity is avoided by a species generally considered highly tolerant of people. PMID:26971220

  6. A Sequence of Flushing and Drying of Breeding Habitats of Aedes aegypti (L.) Prior to the Low Dengue Season in Singapore

    PubMed Central

    Seidahmed, Osama M. E.; Eltahir, Elfatih A. B.

    2016-01-01

    In dengue-endemic areas, transmission shows both a seasonal and interannual variability. To investigate how rainfall impacts dengue seasonality in Singapore, we carried out a longitudinal survey in the Geylang neighborhood from August 2014 to August 2015. The survey comprised of twice-weekly random inspections to outdoor breeding habitats and continuous monitoring for positive ones. In addition, observations of rainstorms were collected. Out of 6824 inspected habitats, 67 contained Aedes aegypti, 11 contained Aedes albopictus and 24 contained Culex spp. The main outdoors habitat of Aedes aegypti was storm drains (54/67). We found that 80% of breeding sites in drains (43/54) were lost after intense rainstorms related to the wet phase of the Northeast monsoon (NE) between November 2014 and early January 2015. Subsequently, 95% (41/43) of these flushed drains had dried out during the dry phase of the NE in late January-February 2015. A return in the outdoor breeding of Aedes aegypti was observed after the onset of Southwest monsoon (SW) between May and August 2015. There was also a reduction in productivity of breeding habitats for larvae and pupae after the onset of the NE. In wet equatorial regions like Singapore, rainfall varies with the monsoons. A monsoon-driven sequence of flushing and drying shapes the outdoor seasonal abundance of Aedes aegypti. This finding can be used to optimize vector control strategies and better understand dengue in the context of climate change. PMID:27459322

  7. A Sequence of Flushing and Drying of Breeding Habitats of Aedes aegypti (L.) Prior to the Low Dengue Season in Singapore.

    PubMed

    Seidahmed, Osama M E; Eltahir, Elfatih A B

    2016-07-01

    In dengue-endemic areas, transmission shows both a seasonal and interannual variability. To investigate how rainfall impacts dengue seasonality in Singapore, we carried out a longitudinal survey in the Geylang neighborhood from August 2014 to August 2015. The survey comprised of twice-weekly random inspections to outdoor breeding habitats and continuous monitoring for positive ones. In addition, observations of rainstorms were collected. Out of 6824 inspected habitats, 67 contained Aedes aegypti, 11 contained Aedes albopictus and 24 contained Culex spp. The main outdoors habitat of Aedes aegypti was storm drains (54/67). We found that 80% of breeding sites in drains (43/54) were lost after intense rainstorms related to the wet phase of the Northeast monsoon (NE) between November 2014 and early January 2015. Subsequently, 95% (41/43) of these flushed drains had dried out during the dry phase of the NE in late January-February 2015. A return in the outdoor breeding of Aedes aegypti was observed after the onset of Southwest monsoon (SW) between May and August 2015. There was also a reduction in productivity of breeding habitats for larvae and pupae after the onset of the NE. In wet equatorial regions like Singapore, rainfall varies with the monsoons. A monsoon-driven sequence of flushing and drying shapes the outdoor seasonal abundance of Aedes aegypti. This finding can be used to optimize vector control strategies and better understand dengue in the context of climate change. PMID:27459322

  8. Feeding habitat use by colonially-breeding herons, egrets, and ibises in North Carolina

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Custer, T.W.; Osborn, R.G.

    1978-01-01

    Nine species of herons, egrets, and ibises were followed by airplane from a nesting colony near Beaufort, North Carolina to their feeding sites. Except for Cattle Egrets, which flew exclusively to fields and dumps, the birds flew mainly to saltmarsh habitat. The selection of feeding habitats by Great Egrets and Louisiana Herons was directly related to tidal depth. The Great Egret was the only species that effectively used eelgrass beds, and its use of this habitat was restricted to between 1.5 h before and after Iow tide. We suspect that shorter-legged herons did not use eelgrass regularly because the water was too deep. Most Great Egrets, White Ibises, Louisiana Herons, and Snowy Egrets used areas near the colony (<4 km). Great Egrets, Black-crowned Night Herons, and White Ibises flew farther from the colony at high than at low tide. Great Egrets traveled farther from the colony when they used thermals; rate of travel to feeding sites was the same, however, whether or not they used thermals. Aggressive encounters were observed at the landing sites of Great Egrets, Louisiana Herons, Snowy Egrets, and Black-crowned Night Herons. In contrast to the other species studied, Cattle Egrets and White Ibises often flew in groups to feeding sites. Indirect evidence supports the hypothesis that colonies can act as 'information centres,' wherein unsuccessful birds follow successful ones to better feeding locations.

  9. Feeding habitat use by colonially breeding herons egrets and ibises in North Carolina USA

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Custer, T.W.; Osborn, R.G.

    1978-01-01

    Nine species of herons, egrets and ibises [Egretta thula, Florida caerula, Hydranassa tricolor, Eudocimus albus, Bubulcus ibis, Casmerodius albus, Nycticorax nycticorax, Plegadis falcinellus and Nyctanassa violacea] were followed by airplane from a nesting colony near Beaufort, North Carolina to their feeding sites. Except for cattle egrets, which flew exclusively to fields and dumps, the birds few mainly to saltmarsh habitat. The selection of feeding habitats by great egrets and Louisiana herons was directly related to tidal depth. The great egret was the only species that effectively used eelgrass [Zostera marina] beds, and its use of this habitat was restricted to between 1.5 h before and after low tide. Shorter-legged herons probably did not use eelgrass regularly because the water was too deep. Most great egrets, white ibises, Louisiana herons and snowy egrets used areas near the colony (< 4 km). Great egrets, black-crowned night herons and white ibises flew farther from the colony at high than at low tide. Great egrets traveled farther from the colony when they used thermals and the rate of travel to feeding sites was the same, whether or not thermals were used. Aggressive encounters were observed at the landing sites of great egrets, Louisiana herons, snowy egrets and black-crowned night herons. Cattle egrets and white ibises often flew in groups to feeding sites. Colonies may act as information centers, where unsuccessful birds follow successful ones to better feeding locations.

  10. Spatial dispersion and characterisation of mosquito breeding habitats in urban vegetable-production areas of Abidjan, Côte d'Ivoire.

    PubMed

    Matthys, B; Koudou, B G; N'Goran, E K; Vounatsou, P; Gosoniu, L; Koné, M; Gissé, G; Utzinger, J

    2010-12-01

    Although urban agriculture (UA) in the developing world may enhance nutrition and local economies, it may also lead to higher densities of mosquito breeding sites and, consequently, to increased transmission of malarial parasites. If targeted interventions against malaria vectors are to be successful in urban areas, the habitats that support Anopheles breeding need to be identified and detected. Mosquito breeding sites have recently been characterised, and the factors associated with productive Anopheles habitats identified, in market gardens of Abidjan, Côte d'Ivoire. Two surveys were conducted in seven vegetable-production areas, one towards the end of the rainy season and one during the dry season. A standardized methodology was used for habitat characterisation and the detection of Anopheles larvae and mosquito pupae. Overall, 454 and 559 potential mosquito-breeding sites were recorded in the rainy-season and dry-season surveys, respectively. In the rainy season, Anopheles larvae and mosquito pupae were found in 29.7% and 5.5% of the potential breeding sites, respectively, whereas the corresponding percentages in the dry season were 24.3% and 8.6%. The potential breeding sites in an agricultural zone on the periphery of Abidjan were those least likely to be positive for Anopheles larvae and mosquito pupae whereas 'agricultural trenches' between seedbeds were the sites most likely to be positive. In a spatially-explicit Bayesian multivariate logistic-regression model, although one out of every five such wells was also found to harbour Anopheles larvae, irrigation wells were found to be the least productive habitats, of those sampled, for pupae. In the study area, simple and cost-effective strategies of larval control should be targeted at agricultural trenches, ideally with the active involvement of local stakeholders (i.e. urban farmers and urban agricultural extension services). PMID:21144184

  11. [The systems organization of the breeding behavior of the moose in its natural habitat].

    PubMed

    Bogomolova, E M; Kurochkin, Iu A

    1995-01-01

    The complex organisation of moose sexual interrelations in natural environment is analysed from the systems point of view. To achieve the useful result--the well-timed fertilization of the all matured females on the given territory by the most strongest males--every year in autumn the multiorganismic system of interaction is formed, including the correspondent behavioural activities of local receptive females and males of different strength and different age. This system includes the sub-system of "rang establishment" between the males (detecting the strongest males), which works mainly at the beginning of rut, and the sub-system of mating. The features of species-specific behaviour are described, which assist to animals mutual detection in the forest, as well as their specific communication during the rut. The special attention is devoted to the role of olfactory and acoustic signals. The details of the forming, existing and disintegration of stable breeding couples are discussed and the breeding ritual itself is described, which ensures the achievement of the synchronisation of high sexual excitation in male and female. By means of long distance bioradiotelemetry the dynamics of heart and breathing rate were investigated as the indicators of animals emotional states on the different stages of their sexual behaviour. PMID:8525679

  12. Integrating selective breeding with microbial genomics to improve rainbow trout disease resistance

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Infectious disease is a substantial problem in aquaculture and improved methods are needed to diminish disease-related loss. One approach is to selectively breed fish from crosses that exhibit superior disease-resistance phenotypes thereby increasing fitness. A current limitation in breeding program...

  13. Umatilla River Subbasin Fish Habitat Improvement; 1993 Annual Report.

    SciTech Connect

    Bailey, Timothy D.; Laws, Troy S.

    1994-05-01

    This annual report is in fulfillment of contract obligations with Bonneville Power Administration which is the funding source for the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife`s Umatilla Basin Habitat Improvement Project. Major activities undertaken during this report period included: (1) procurement of one access easement with a private landowner, (2) design, layout, and implementation of 3.36 miles of instream structure maintenance, (3) inspection and routine maintenance of 15.1 miles of fence, (4) revegetation along 3.36 miles of stream, (5) collection and summarization of physical and biological monitoring data, (6) extensive interagency coordination, and (7) environmental education activities with local high school students.

  14. Assessing habitat use by breeding great blue herons (Ardea herodias) on the upper Mississippi River, USA

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Kirsch, E.M.; Ickes, B.; Olsen, D.A.

    2008-01-01

    Approximately 7,610 to 3,175 pairs of Great Blue Herons (Ardea herodias) nested along 420 river km of the Uppert Mississippi River (UMR) from 1993 to 2003. Numbers declined precipitously in the mid-1990s stabilizing somewhat in the early 2000s. The average number of nests in colonies was 349 (SD = 283). Annual colony turn over rate for the eleven year period was 0.15 and ranged from 0.06 to 0.29 each year. The number of years that a colony was active was positively correlated with the average number of nests present while the colony was active. Of the eight colonies active in 1993 that averaged more than 349 nests, four were abandoned by 2003. Only one colony grew to greater than 349 nests during the study period. Custer et al. (2004) suggested that herons on the UMR may be limited by forage resources or foraging habitat and social factors, as evidenced by the even spacing of colonies that reflects the maximum feeding range of herons on the river. To rule out nesting and foraging habitat limitation, landscape habitat features of terrestrial and aquatic areas were examined for colony areas and areas without colonies. Available fish monitoring data were used to examine potential interactions between herons and forage resources. Colony areas did not differ from areas without colonies in any habitat feature. Indices of potential heron forage fish increased from 1993 to 2002, although low indices of fish abundance in 1993 were likely influenced by flood conditions that year. Although fish availability to herons is related to flows and water levels, available data suggested that herons did not negatively impact their potential forage base. Numbers of herons were not correlated with indices of fish abundance from the preceding year on a pool-wide scale. Indices of fish abundance were higher within 5 km of colonies than farther than 5 km from colonies, and indices of fish abundance increased from June through August both near and far from colonies. Numbers of herons and

  15. A century of potato breeding: improvement, diversification, and diversity

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Breeding within potato has relied almost entirely on phenotypic selection and little is known of the underlying genetic elements being acted upon. To characterize the effects of this selection on phenotypic and genotypic diversity within cultivated potato, the SolCAP 8300 Infinium SNP chip was utili...

  16. Cowpea Breeding in the USA, New Varieties and Improved Germplasm

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Cowpeas are utilized in the U.S. as both a vegetable crop and a dry bean, and breeding efforts are focused on development of cultivars for specific end uses. Blackeye cultivars are developed for production of dry beans for national and international markets. ‘California Blackeye No. 50' (CB50), a ...

  17. Molecular marker-assisted breeding for maize improvement in Asia

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Maize is one of the most important food and feed crops in Asia, and is a source of income for several million farmers. Despite impressive progress made in the last few decades through conventional breeding in the “Asia-7” (China, India, Indonesia, Nepal, Philippines, Thailand and Vietnam), average m...

  18. Modelling terrestrial and marine foraging habitats in breeding Audouin's gulls Larus audouinii: timing matters.

    PubMed

    Bécares, Juan; García-Tarrasón, Manuel; Villero, Dani; Bateman, Santiago; Jover, Lluís; García-Matarranz, Víctor; Sanpera, Carolina; Arcos, José Manuel

    2015-01-01

    Although the breeding ecology of Audouin's gull has been widely studied, its spatial distribution patterns have received little attention. We assessed the foraging movements of 36 GPS-tracked adult Audouin's gulls breeding at the Ebro Delta (NW Mediterranean), coinciding with the incubation period (May 2011). This also coincided with a trawling moratorium northwards from the colony. We modelled the distribution of the gulls by combining these tracking data with environmental variables (including fishing activities from Vessel Monitoring System, VMS), using Maxent. The modelling range included both marine and terrestrial areas. Models were produced separately for every 2h time interval across the day, and for 2 fishing activity scenarios (workdays vs. weekends), allowing to assess the spatio-temporal distribution patterns of the gulls and the degree of association with fisheries. During workdays, gull distribution at sea fully matched with fishing activities, both trawling (daylight) and purse-seining (nightime). Gulls tended to avoid the area under trawling moratorium, confirming the high influence of fisheries on the distribution patterns of this species. On weekends, gulls made lesser use of the sea and tended to increase the use of rice fields. Overall, Audouin's gull activity was more intense during dailight hours, although birds also showed nocturnal activity, on both workdays and weekends. Nocturnal patterns at sea were more disperse during the latter, probably because these gulls are able to capture small pelagic fish at night in natural conditions, but tend to congregate around purse-seiners (which would enhance their foraging efficiency) in workdays. These results provide important insight for the management of this species. This is of particular relevance under the current scenario of European fisheries policies, since new regulations are aimed at eliminating discards, and this would likely influence Audouin's gull populations. PMID:25875597

  19. Modelling Terrestrial and Marine Foraging Habitats in Breeding Audouin's Gulls Larus audouinii: Timing Matters

    PubMed Central

    Bécares, Juan; García-Tarrasón, Manuel; Villero, Dani; Bateman, Santiago; Jover, Lluís; García-Matarranz, Víctor; Sanpera, Carolina; Arcos, José Manuel

    2015-01-01

    Although the breeding ecology of Audouin’s gull has been widely studied, its spatial distribution patterns have received little attention. We assessed the foraging movements of 36 GPS-tracked adult Audouin’s gulls breeding at the Ebro Delta (NW Mediterranean), coinciding with the incubation period (May 2011). This also coincided with a trawling moratorium northwards from the colony. We modelled the distribution of the gulls by combining these tracking data with environmental variables (including fishing activities from Vessel Monitoring System, VMS), using Maxent. The modelling range included both marine and terrestrial areas. Models were produced separately for every 2h time interval across the day, and for 2 fishing activity scenarios (workdays vs. weekends), allowing to assess the spatio-temporal distribution patterns of the gulls and the degree of association with fisheries. During workdays, gull distribution at sea fully matched with fishing activities, both trawling (daylight) and purse-seining (nightime). Gulls tended to avoid the area under trawling moratorium, confirming the high influence of fisheries on the distribution patterns of this species. On weekends, gulls made lesser use of the sea and tended to increase the use of rice fields. Overall, Audouin’s gull activity was more intense during dailight hours, although birds also showed nocturnal activity, on both workdays and weekends. Nocturnal patterns at sea were more disperse during the latter, probably because these gulls are able to capture small pelagic fish at night in natural conditions, but tend to congregate around purse-seiners (which would enhance their foraging efficiency) in workdays. These results provide important insight for the management of this species. This is of particular relevance under the current scenario of European fisheries policies, since new regulations are aimed at eliminating discards, and this would likely influence Audouin’s gull populations. PMID:25875597

  20. Between a Rock and a Hard Place: Habitat Selection in Female-Calf Humpback Whale (Megaptera novaeangliae) Pairs on the Hawaiian Breeding Grounds

    PubMed Central

    Cartwright, Rachel; Gillespie, Blake; LaBonte, Kristen; Mangold, Terence; Venema, Amy; Eden, Kevin; Sullivan, Matthew

    2012-01-01

    The Au'au Channel between the islands of Maui and Lanai, Hawaii comprises critical breeding habitat for humpback whales (Megaptera novaeangliae) of the Central North Pacific stock. However, like many regions where marine mega-fauna gather, these waters are also the focus of a flourishing local eco-tourism and whale watching industry. Our aim was to establish current trends in habitat preference in female-calf humpback whale pairs within this region, focusing specifically on the busy, eastern portions of the channel. We used an equally-spaced zigzag transect survey design, compiled our results in a GIS model to identify spatial trends and calculated Neu's Indices to quantify levels of habitat use. Our study revealed that while mysticete female-calf pairs on breeding grounds typically favor shallow, inshore waters, female-calf pairs in the Au'au Channel avoided shallow waters (<20 m) and regions within 2 km of the shoreline. Preferred regions for female-calf pairs comprised water depths between 40–60 m, regions of rugged bottom topography and regions that lay between 4 and 6 km from a small boat harbor (Lahaina Harbor) that fell within the study area. In contrast to other humpback whale breeding grounds, there was only minimal evidence of typical patterns of stratification or segregation according to group composition. A review of habitat use by maternal females across Hawaiian waters indicates that maternal habitat choice varies between localities within the Hawaiian Islands, suggesting that maternal females alter their use of habitat according to locally varying pressures. This ability to respond to varying environments may be the key that allows wildlife species to persist in regions where human activity and critical habitat overlap. PMID:22666432

  1. Effects of grazing and burning on densities and habitats of breeding ducks in North Dakota

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Kruse, A.D.; Bowen, B.S.

    1996-01-01

    Native grassland communities controlled by public agencies become increasingly important to the maintenance of many wildlife species as privately owned grasslands are destroyed or degraded for farming, mining, and development. In turn, wildlife on publicly owned grasslands are affected by the management techniques practiced by local managers. We studied the effects of grazing and prescribed burning on upland-nesting ducks and the structure and type of vegetation from 1980 to 1988 at the Lostwood National Wildlife Refuge (NWR) in northwestern North Dakota. Mallard (Anas platyrhynchos), the most abundant species at Lostwood NWR, had lower (P < 0.05) annual nest densities on experimental and control fields in the later years than in the early years of the study. Spring burning reduced (P = 0.016) nest densities of gadwall (A. strepera). Spring grazing reduced nest densities of gadwall (P = 0.014), and blue-winged teal (A. discors, P = 0.023). Nest density of gadwall increased (P = 0.018) after spring grazing was terminated. On the summer burn/spring graze fields, blue-winged teal had lower (P = 0.010) nest densities after treatments (1987-88) than before treatments (1980-81). Nest success was high (mallard 34%, gadwall 45%, blue-winged teal 31%) but was not influenced (P 0.16) by the burning and grazing treatments. During the study, the amount of grass/brush increased, whereas the amount of brush and brush/grass decreased on control and treatment fields. During the years with burning and grazing, short vegetation increased and tall vegetation decreased. On the spring graze fields, 1 year after grazing ended the vegetation was similar to that on the control fields. The spring burn and summer burn/spring graze fields recovered more slowly. Brushy species such as western snowberry (Symphoricarpos occidentalis) provided attractive nesting habitat for many upland-nesting waterfowl species, especially mallard, gadwall, American wigeon (A. americana), and northern pintail (A

  2. Utility of ERTS for monitoring the breeding habitat of migratory waterfowl

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Work, E. A., Jr.; Gilmer, D. S.; Klett, A. T.

    1974-01-01

    Since 1968 the Bureau of Sport Fisheries and Wildlife (BSF&W) and the Environmental Research Institute of Michigan have cooperated on developing applications of remote sensing to the management of migratory waterfowl. Basically, this work has been concerned with (1) the assimilation of data on surface water conditions so that the data can be used as an index of annual waterfowl production, and (2) the collection of data on land use and wetland quality so that a measure of habitat carrying capacity is obtained. To date, efforts have been directed toward utilizing ERTS to monitor surface water conditions. An example of a model used for predicting the annual production of mallards (Anas platyrhynchos) is presented. The data inputs to this model and the potential for acquiring these data using ERTS are described.

  3. Natural Propagation and Habitat Improvement, Volume I, Oregon, Supplement C, White River Habitat Inventory, 1983 Annual Report.

    SciTech Connect

    Heller, David

    1984-04-01

    More than 130 miles of stream fish habitat was inventoried and evaluated on the Mt. Hood National Forest during the first year of this multi-year project. First year tasks included field inventory and evaluation of habitat conditions on the White River and tributary streams thought to have the highest potential for supporting anadromous fish populations. All streams inventoried were located on the Mt. Hood National Forest. The surveyed area appears to contain most of the high quality anadromous fish habitat in the drainage. Habitat conditions appear suitable for steelhead, coho, and chinook salmon, and possibly sockeye. One hundred and twenty-four miles of potential anadromous fish habitat were identifed in the survey. Currently, 32 miles of this habitat would be readily accessible to anadromous fish. An additional 72 miles of habitat could be accessed with only minor passage improvement work. About 20 miles of habitat, however, will require major investment to provide fish passage. Three large lakes (Boulder, 14 acres; Badger, 45 acres; Clear, 550 acres) appear to be well-suited for rearing anadromous fish, although passage enhancement would be needed before self-sustaining runs could be established in any of the lakes.

  4. Conflation and aggregation of spatial data improve predictive models for species with limited habitats: a case of the threatened yellow-billed cuckoo in Arizona, USA

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Villarreal, Miguel L.; Van Riper, Charles, III; Petrakis, Roy E.

    2013-01-01

    Riparian vegetation provides important wildlife habitat in the Southwestern United States, but limited distributions and spatial complexity often leads to inaccurate representation in maps used to guide conservation. We test the use of data conflation and aggregation on multiple vegetation/land-cover maps to improve the accuracy of habitat models for the threatened western yellow-billed cuckoo (Coccyzus americanus occidentalis). We used species observations (n = 479) from a state-wide survey to develop habitat models from 1) three vegetation/land-cover maps produced at different geographic scales ranging from state to national, and 2) new aggregate maps defined by the spatial agreement of cover types, which were defined as high (agreement = all data sets), moderate (agreement ≥ 2), and low (no agreement required). Model accuracies, predicted habitat locations, and total area of predicted habitat varied considerably, illustrating the effects of input data quality on habitat predictions and resulting potential impacts on conservation planning. Habitat models based on aggregated and conflated data were more accurate and had higher model sensitivity than original vegetation/land-cover, but this accuracy came at the cost of reduced geographic extent of predicted habitat. Using the highest performing models, we assessed cuckoo habitat preference and distribution in Arizona and found that major watersheds containing high-probably habitat are fragmented by a wide swath of low-probability habitat. Focus on riparian restoration in these areas could provide more breeding habitat for the threatened cuckoo, offset potential future habitat losses in adjacent watershed, and increase regional connectivity for other threatened vertebrates that also use riparian corridors.

  5. Analysis of humpback whale sounds in shallow waters of the Southeastern Arabian Sea: An indication of breeding habitat.

    PubMed

    Mahanty, Madan M; Latha, G; Thirunavukkarasu, A

    2015-06-01

    The primary objective of this work was to present the acoustical identification of humpback whales, detected by using an autonomous ambient noise measurement system, deployed in the shallow waters of the Southeastern Arabian Sea (SEAS) during the period January to May 2011. Seven types of sounds were detected. These were characteristically upsweeps and downsweeps along with harmonics. Sounds produced repeatedly in a specific pattern were referred to as phrases (PQRS and ABC). Repeated phrases in a particular pattern were referred to as themes, and from the spectrographic analysis, two themes (I and II) were identified. The variation in the acoustic characteristics such as fundamental frequency, range, duration of the sound unit, and the structure of the phrases and themes are discussed. Sound units were recorded from mid-January to mid-March, with a peak in February, when the mean SST is approx. 28 degree C, and no presence was recorded after mid-March. The temporal and thematic structures strongly determine the functions of the humpback whale song form. Given the use of song in the SEAS, this area is possibly used as an active breeding habitat by humpback whales during the winter season. PMID:25963267

  6. Advanced phenotyping offers opportunities for improved breeding of forage and turf species

    PubMed Central

    Walter, Achim; Studer, Bruno; Kölliker, Roland

    2012-01-01

    Background and Aims Advanced phenotyping, i.e. the application of automated, high-throughput methods to characterize plant architecture and performance, has the potential to accelerate breeding progress but is far from being routinely used in current breeding approaches. In forage and turf improvement programmes, in particular, where breeding populations and cultivars are characterized by high genetic diversity and substantial genotype × environment interactions, precise and efficient phenotyping is essential to meet future challenges imposed by climate change, growing demand and declining resources. Scope This review highlights recent achievements in the establishment of phenotyping tools and platforms. Some of these tools have originally been established in remote sensing, some in precision agriculture, while others are laboratory-based imaging procedures. They quantify plant colour, spectral reflection, chlorophyll-fluorescence, temperature and other properties, from which traits such as biomass, architecture, photosynthetic efficiency, stomatal aperture or stress resistance can be derived. Applications of these methods in the context of forage and turf breeding are discussed. Conclusions Progress in cutting-edge molecular breeding tools is beginning to be matched by progress in automated non-destructive imaging methods. Joint application of precise phenotyping machinery and molecular tools in optimized breeding schemes will improve forage and turf breeding in the near future and will thereby contribute to amended performance of managed grassland agroecosystems. PMID:22362662

  7. New classification of natural breeding habitats for Neotropical anophelines in the Yanomami Indian Reserve, Amazon Region, Brazil and a new larval sampling methodology.

    PubMed

    Sánchez-Ribas, Jordi; Oliveira-Ferreira, Joseli; Rosa-Freitas, Maria Goreti; Trilla, Lluís; Silva-do-Nascimento, Teresa Fernandes

    2015-09-01

    Here we present the first in a series of articles about the ecology of immature stages of anophelines in the Brazilian Yanomami area. We propose a new larval habitat classification and a new larval sampling methodology. We also report some preliminary results illustrating the applicability of the methodology based on data collected in the Brazilian Amazon rainforest in a longitudinal study of two remote Yanomami communities, Parafuri and Toototobi. In these areas, we mapped and classified 112 natural breeding habitats located in low-order river systems based on their association with river flood pulses, seasonality and exposure to sun. Our classification rendered seven types of larval habitats: lakes associated with the river, which are subdivided into oxbow lakes and nonoxbow lakes, flooded areas associated with the river, flooded areas not associated with the river, rainfall pools, small forest streams, medium forest streams and rivers. The methodology for larval sampling was based on the accurate quantification of the effective breeding area, taking into account the area of the perimeter and subtypes of microenvironments present per larval habitat type using a laser range finder and a small portable inflatable boat. The new classification and new sampling methodology proposed herein may be useful in vector control programs. PMID:26517655

  8. New classification of natural breeding habitats for Neotropical anophelines in the Yanomami Indian Reserve, Amazon Region, Brazil and a new larval sampling methodology

    PubMed Central

    Sánchez-Ribas, Jordi; Oliveira-Ferreira, Joseli; Rosa-Freitas, Maria Goreti; Trilla, Lluís; Silva-do-Nascimento, Teresa Fernandes

    2015-01-01

    Here we present the first in a series of articles about the ecology of immature stages of anophelines in the Brazilian Yanomami area. We propose a new larval habitat classification and a new larval sampling methodology. We also report some preliminary results illustrating the applicability of the methodology based on data collected in the Brazilian Amazon rainforest in a longitudinal study of two remote Yanomami communities, Parafuri and Toototobi. In these areas, we mapped and classified 112 natural breeding habitats located in low-order river systems based on their association with river flood pulses, seasonality and exposure to sun. Our classification rendered seven types of larval habitats: lakes associated with the river, which are subdivided into oxbow lakes and nonoxbow lakes, flooded areas associated with the river, flooded areas not associated with the river, rainfall pools, small forest streams, medium forest streams and rivers. The methodology for larval sampling was based on the accurate quantification of the effective breeding area, taking into account the area of the perimeter and subtypes of microenvironments present per larval habitat type using a laser range finder and a small portable inflatable boat. The new classification and new sampling methodology proposed herein may be useful in vector control programs. PMID:26517655

  9. Natural Propagation and Habitat Improvement, Volume I, Oregon, Supplement A: Habitat Enhancement Evaluation of Fish and Wash Creeks, 1983 Annual Report.

    SciTech Connect

    Everest, Fred

    1984-04-01

    Habitat improvements for anadromous salmonids on Fish Creek in the upper Clackamas Basin were evaluated. The primary objectives of the evaluation effort include: (1) evaluate and quantify the changes in salmonid spawning and rearing habitat resulting from a variety of habitat improvements; (2) evaluate and quantify the changes in fish populations and biomass resulting from habitat improvements; and (3) evaluate the cost-effectiveness of habitat improvements developed with BPA and KV funds on Fish Creek. This report integrates data for the evaluation efforts collected in the Fish Creek Basin in 1982 and 1983. 3 references, 34 figures, 23 tables.

  10. Changes in Habitat and Populations of Steelhead Trout, Coho Salmon, and Chinook Salmon in Fish Creek, Oregon; Habitat Improvement, 1983-1987 Final Report.

    SciTech Connect

    Everest, Fred H.; Hohler, David B.; Cain, Thomas C.

    1988-03-01

    Construction and evaluation of salmonid habitat improvements on Fish Creek, a tributary of the upper Clackamas River, began in 1982 as a cooperative venture between the Estacada Ranger District, Mt. Hood National Forest, and the Anadromous Fish Habitat Research Unit of the Pacific Northwest Research Station (PNW), USDA Forest Service. The project was initially conceived as a 5-year effort (1982-1987) to be financed with Forest Service funds. The habitat improvement program and the evaluation of improvements were both expanded in mid-1983 when the Bonneville Power Administration (BPA) entered into an agreement with the Mt. Hood National Forest to cooperatively fund work on Fish Creek. Habitat improvement work in the basin is guided by the Fish Creek Habitat Rehabilitation-Enhancement Framework developed cooperatively by the Estacada Ranger District, the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife, and the Pacific Northwest Research Station. The framework examines potential factors limiting production of salmonids in the basin, and the appropriate habitat improvement measures needed to address the limiting factors. Habitat improvement work in the basin has been designed to: (1) improve quantity, quality, and distribution of spawning habitat for coho and spring chinook salmon and steelhead trout, (2) increase low flow rearing habitat for steelhead trout and coho salmon, (3) improve overwintering habitat for coho salmon and steelhead trout, (4) rehabilitate riparian vegetation to improve stream shading to benefit all species, and (5) evaluate improvement projects from a drainage wide perspective. The objectives of the evaluation include: (1) Drainage-wide evaluation and quantification of changes in salmonid spawning and rearing habitat resulting from a variety of habitat improvements. (2) Evaluation and quantification of changes in fish populations and biomass resulting from habitat improvements. (3) Benefit-cost analysis of habitat improvements.

  11. A satellite model of Southwestern Willow Flycatcher (Empidonax traillii extimus) breeding habitat and a simulation of potential effects of tamarisk leaf beetles (Diorhabda spp.), southwestern United States

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Hatten, James R.

    2016-01-01

    The study described in this report represents the first time that a satellite model has been used to identify potential Southwestern Willow Flycatcher (Empidonax traillii extimus) (hereinafter referred to as “flycatcher”) breeding habitat rangewide for 2013–15. Fifty-seven Landsat scenes were required to map the entire range of the flycatcher, encompassing parts of six States and more than 1 billion 30-meter pixels. Predicted flycatcher habitat was summarized in a hierarchical fashion from largest to smallest: regionwide, State, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) management unit, 7.5-minute quadrangle, and critical-habitat reach. The term “predicted habitat” is used throughout this report to distinguish areas the satellite model predicts as suitable flycatcher habitat from what may actually exist on the ground. A rangewide accuracy assessment was done with 758 territories collected in 2014, and change detection was done with yearly habitat maps to identify how and where habitat changed over time. Additionally, effects of tamarisk leaf beetles (Diorhabda spp.) on flycatcher habitat were summarized for the lower Virgin River from 2010 to 2015, and simulations of how tamarisk leaf beetles may affect flycatcher habitat in the lower Colorado and upper Gila Rivers were done for 2015. Model results indicated that the largest areas of predicted flycatcher habitat at elevations below 1,524 meters were in New Mexico and Arizona, areas followed in descending order by California, Texas, Nevada, Utah, and Colorado. By FWS management unit, the largest area of flycatcher habitat during all 3 years were the Middle Rio Grande (New Mexico), followed by the Upper Gila (Arizona and New Mexico) and Middle Gila/San Pedro (Arizona) management units. The area of predicted flycatcher habitat varied considerably in 7.5-minute quadrangles, ranging from 0 to1,398 hectares (ha). Averaged across 3 years, the top three producing quadrangles were Paraje Well (New Mexico), San Marcial

  12. Umatilla River Subbasin Fish Habitat Improvement; 1991 Annual Report.

    SciTech Connect

    Bailey, Timothy D.; Rimbach, Gregory P.

    1992-01-01

    This annual report is in fulfillment of contract obligations with Bonneville Power Administration which is the funding source for the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife`s Umatilla Basin Habitat Improvement Project. In May of this year a thirty year flood event occurred in the Umatilla Basin that resulted in major changes to the year`s statement of work and to the future direction of the program. All projects in the Birch Creek drainage sustained damage to either fencing or instream work, with severe damages on about 1/3 of the project areas. As a result of flooding, and subsequent maintenance demands, all new project implementation in the Birch Creek drainage was cancelled; the entire implementation season was spent repairing flood damages in the Birch Creek drainage. The major activities undertaken during this report period were: (a) construction of O.5 miles of riparian corridor fence on Meacham Creek, (b) performing intensive instream maintenance on 7.25 miles of Mainstem Birch and East Birch creeks, (c) performing major fence maintenance on 1.8 miles of flood damaged riparian corridor fence, (d) rebuilding of O.5 miles of flood destroyed fence, and 54 stream crossing fences, (e) retrofitting of three miles of high tensile fence with an extended electric wire, and (f) spending considerable time working with landowners to resolve flood related problems and come to agreement on project maintenance activities. Other activities undertaken during this report period were: weekly inspection and maintenance of fencing projects, collection and summarization of temperature data, photopoint picture taking, procurement of instream work permits, and coordination with numerous agencies and tribes.

  13. Breeding signatures of rice improvement revealed by a genomic variation map from a large germplasm collection

    PubMed Central

    Xie, Weibo; Wang, Gongwei; Yuan, Meng; Yao, Wen; Lyu, Kai; Zhao, Hu; Yang, Meng; Li, Pingbo; Zhang, Xing; Yuan, Jing; Wang, Quanxiu; Liu, Fang; Dong, Huaxia; Zhang, Lejing; Li, Xinglei; Meng, Xiangzhou; Zhang, Wan; Xiong, Lizhong; He, Yuqing; Wang, Shiping; Yu, Sibin; Xu, Caiguo; Luo, Jie; Li, Xianghua; Xiao, Jinghua; Lian, Xingming; Zhang, Qifa

    2015-01-01

    Intensive rice breeding over the past 50 y has dramatically increased productivity especially in the indica subspecies, but our knowledge of the genomic changes associated with such improvement has been limited. In this study, we analyzed low-coverage sequencing data of 1,479 rice accessions from 73 countries, including landraces and modern cultivars. We identified two major subpopulations, indica I (IndI) and indica II (IndII), in the indica subspecies, which corresponded to the two putative heterotic groups resulting from independent breeding efforts. We detected 200 regions spanning 7.8% of the rice genome that had been differentially selected between IndI and IndII, and thus referred to as breeding signatures. These regions included large numbers of known functional genes and loci associated with important agronomic traits revealed by genome-wide association studies. Grain yield was positively correlated with the number of breeding signatures in a variety, suggesting that the number of breeding signatures in a line may be useful for predicting agronomic potential and the selected loci may provide targets for rice improvement. PMID:26358652

  14. Lessons Learned While Breeding Peanut for Improved Drought Tolerance

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Peanuts become contaminated with aflatoxins when subjected to prolong periods of heat and drought stress. We have documented that improved drought tolerance can result in reduced aflatoxin contamination, and we are using drought-tolerance as an indirect selection technique to develop peanut cultiva...

  15. Does stress response predict return rate in a migratory bird species? A study of American redstarts and their non-breeding habitat.

    PubMed

    Angelier, Frédéric; Holberton, Rebecca L; Marra, Peter P

    2009-10-01

    In vertebrates, the adrenocortical stress response activates an emergency life-history stage, which is thought to promote survival by helping individuals escape life-threatening situations. Although the adrenocortical stress response promotes many behavioural and physiological changes, it remains unclear whether this stress response actually translates into higher survival in wild vertebrates. We measured the adrenocortical stress response of non-breeding American redstarts (Setophaga ruticilla), a migratory bird that wintered in habitats of either high (mangroves) or low suitability (scrubs), and subsequently monitored their return rate during the following non-breeding seasons. The intensity of the adrenocortical stress response was consistent within individuals across the non-breeding season and was positively correlated with return rates in redstarts that wintered in scrubs, but not in redstarts that wintered in mangroves. Thus, in a context-dependent manner, the ability of an individual to physiologically react to stress determines its ability of returning to its non-breeding territory the following winters. For an individual, the ability to mount an important adrenocortical stress response probably benefits to survival. However, this beneficial effect probably depends on an individual's environment and phenotypic characteristics because these two variables are likely to affect its probability of being confronted with life-threatening stressors during its annual life cycle. PMID:19605397

  16. Fifteenmile Basin Habitat Improvement Project: 1990 Annual Report.

    SciTech Connect

    Asbridge, Gary M.

    1993-12-01

    U.S.D.A. Forest Service activities in the Fifteenmile basin during 1990 involved the placement of 84 log structures in a two mile reach of Fifteenmile Creek (RM 45.4-47.4) by a combination of falling trees into the channel, bucking in blowdown trees spanning the creek, and winching in existing blowdown and log segments from newly fallen trees. The primary project objective on Fifteenmile Creek was to increase physical habitat diversity and rearing habitat for age l+ winter steelhead trout. USFS personnel also conducted spring spawning surveys in sections of Ramsey and Eightmile Creeks, physical habitat pre-project monitoring in the above project reach, water temperature monitoring, and macroinvertebrate sampling.

  17. Index-in-retrospect and breeding objectives characterizing genetic improvement programs for South African Nguni cattle

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The objective of the current study was to describe the historical selection applied to Nguni cattle in South Africa. Index-in-retrospect methods were applied to data originating from the National Beef Cattle Improvement Scheme. Data used were estimated breeding values (EBV) for animals born during t...

  18. The Role of Breeding and Genetics in Animal Production Improvement in the Developing Countries

    PubMed Central

    Rendel, Jan

    1974-01-01

    Availability of animal protein for human consumption is very low in the developing countries mainly because of low productivity of existing livestock; ways and means to improve productivity through breeding are discussed and some basic issues requiring further research pointed out. PMID:17248670

  19. Ross River virus risk associated with dispersal of Aedes (Ochlerotatus) camptorhynchus (Thomson) from breeding habitat into surrounding residential areas: muddy lakes, Western Australia.

    PubMed

    Jardine, Andrew; Neville, Peter J; Dent, Colin; Webster, Carla; Lindsay, Michael D A

    2014-07-01

    Rapid population growth in Western Australia has resulted in increased development of land for residential housing, and new developments are often proposed close to water because of intrinsic aesthetic values. However, this placement may place future residents at risk of mosquito-borne disease, of which Ross River virus (RRV) disease is the most common in Australia. Mosquito dispersal data were combined with a spatial analysis of human RRV cases to show that mosquitoes dispersed readily from larval habitat into surrounding low- and high-density residential areas and that residents living within 2 km of mosquito breeding habitat had a significantly higher rate of RRV disease. This finding highlights the importance of planning authorities in state and local governments to consider the implications of mosquito-borne disease risks when assessing residential development applications. PMID:24799370

  20. Energy reallocation to breeding performance through improved nest building in laboratory mice.

    PubMed

    Gaskill, Brianna N; Pritchett-Corning, Kathleen R; Gordon, Christopher J; Pajor, Edmond A; Lucas, Jeffrey R; Davis, Jerry K; Garner, Joseph P

    2013-01-01

    Mice are housed at temperatures (20-26 °C) that increase their basal metabolic rates and impose high energy demands to maintain core temperatures. Therefore, energy must be reallocated from other biological processes to increase heat production to offset heat loss. Supplying laboratory mice with nesting material may provide sufficient insulation to reduce heat loss and improve both feed conversion and breeding performance. Naïve C57BL/6, BALB/c, and CD-1 breeding pairs were provided with bedding alone, or bedding supplemented with either 8 g of Enviro-Dri, 8 g of Nestlets, for 6 months. Mice provided with either nesting material built more dome-like nests than controls. Nesting material improved feed efficiency per pup weaned as well as pup weaning weight. The breeding index (pups weaned/dam/week) was higher when either nesting material was provided. Thus, the sparing of energy for thermoregulation of mice given additional nesting material may have been responsible for the improved breeding and growth of offspring. PMID:24040193

  1. Genomics-assisted breeding for boosting crop improvement in pigeonpea (Cajanus cajan)

    PubMed Central

    Pazhamala, Lekha; Saxena, Rachit K.; Singh, Vikas K.; Sameerkumar, C. V.; Kumar, Vinay; Sinha, Pallavi; Patel, Kishan; Obala, Jimmy; Kaoneka, Seleman R.; Tongoona, P.; Shimelis, Hussein A.; Gangarao, N. V. P. R.; Odeny, Damaris; Rathore, Abhishek; Dharmaraj, P. S.; Yamini, K. N.; Varshney, Rajeev K.

    2015-01-01

    Pigeonpea is an important pulse crop grown predominantly in the tropical and sub-tropical regions of the world. Although pigeonpea growing area has considerably increased, yield has remained stagnant for the last six decades mainly due to the exposure of the crop to various biotic and abiotic constraints. In addition, low level of genetic variability and limited genomic resources have been serious impediments to pigeonpea crop improvement through modern breeding approaches. In recent years, however, due to the availability of next generation sequencing and high-throughput genotyping technologies, the scenario has changed tremendously. The reduced sequencing costs resulting in the decoding of the pigeonpea genome has led to the development of various genomic resources including molecular markers, transcript sequences and comprehensive genetic maps. Mapping of some important traits including resistance to Fusarium wilt and sterility mosaic disease, fertility restoration, determinacy with other agronomically important traits have paved the way for applying genomics-assisted breeding (GAB) through marker assisted selection as well as genomic selection (GS). This would accelerate the development and improvement of both varieties and hybrids in pigeonpea. Particularly for hybrid breeding programme, mitochondrial genomes of cytoplasmic male sterile (CMS) lines, maintainers and hybrids have been sequenced to identify genes responsible for cytoplasmic male sterility. Furthermore, several diagnostic molecular markers have been developed to assess the purity of commercial hybrids. In summary, pigeonpea has become a genomic resources-rich crop and efforts have already been initiated to integrate these resources in pigeonpea breeding. PMID:25741349

  2. Natural Propagation and Habitat Improvement, Volume I, Oregon, 1984 Final and Annual Reports.

    SciTech Connect

    Miller, Rod

    1986-02-01

    This volume contains reports on habitat improvement and fisheries enhancement projects conducted in the following subbasins: (1) Clackamas River; (2) Hood River; :(3) Deschutes River; (4) John Day River; (5) Umatilla River; and (6) Grande Ronde River. (ACR)

  3. Natural Propagation and Habitat Improvement, Volume 1, Oregon, 1986 Final and Annual Reports.

    SciTech Connect

    Stuart, Amy

    1987-01-01

    This report describes activities implemented for fisheries habitat improvement work on priority drainages in the Clackamas and Hood River sub-basins. Separate abstracts have been prepared for the reports on individual projects. (ACR)

  4. Integrating SAS and GIS software to improve habitat-use estimates from radiotelemetry data

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Kenow, K.P.; Wright, R.G.; Samuel, M.D.; Rasmussen, P.W.

    2001-01-01

    Radiotelemetry has been used commonly to remotely determine habitat use by a variety of wildlife species. However, habitat misclassification can occur because the true location of a radiomarked animal can only be estimated. Analytical methods that provide improved estimates of habitat use from radiotelemetry location data using a subsampling approach have been proposed previously. We developed software, based on these methods, to conduct improved habitat-use analyses. A Statistical Analysis System (SAS)-executable file generates a random subsample of points from the error distribution of an estimated animal location and formats the output into ARC/INFO-compatible coordinate and attribute files. An associated ARC/INFO Arc Macro Language (AML) creates a coverage of the random points, determines the habitat type at each random point from an existing habitat coverage, sums the number of subsample points by habitat type for each location, and outputs tile results in ASCII format. The proportion and precision of habitat types used is calculated from the subsample of points generated for each radiotelemetry location. We illustrate the method and software by analysis of radiotelemetry data for a female wild turkey (Meleagris gallopavo).

  5. Natural Propagation and Habitat improvement, Volume 2B, Washington, Similkameen River Habitat Inventory, 1983 Final Report.

    SciTech Connect

    Unknown Author

    1984-04-01

    During the summer low flow period, a habitat assessment of the Similkameen, Tulameen, Ashnola and Pasayten rivers in British Columbia and Washington State was conducted between August 10 and October 10, 1983. The biophysical survey assessed 400 km (250 mi) of stream at 77 stations. Fish sampling was conducted at each station to assess the resident fish populations and standing crop. Rainbow trout populations and standing crops were found to be very low. Large populations of mountain whitefish and bridgelip suckers were present in the manstem Similkameen River below Similkameen Falls. High densities of sculpins and longnose dace were found throughout the system except for sculpins above the falls, where none were captured. Approximately 961,000 m/sup 2/ (1,150,000 yd/sup 2/) of spawnable area for steelhead trout were estimated for the entire system which could accommodate 98,000 spawners. Nearly 367,000 m/sup 2/ (439,000 yd/sup 2/) of chinook salmon spawnable area was also estimated, capable of accommodating 55,000 chinook. Rearing area for steelhead trout smolts was estimated for the whole system at 1.8 million m/sup 2/ (2.2 million yd/sup 2/). Chinook salmon smolt rearing area was estimated at 700,000 m/sup 2/ (837,000 yd/sup 2/). Rearing area was found to be a limiting factor to anadromous production in a Similkameen River system. Smolt production from the system was estimated 610,000 steelhead trout and between 1.6 million and 4.8 million chinook salmon. No water quality, temperature or flow problems for anadromous salmonids were evident from the available data and the habitat inventory. In addition to an impassable falls on the Tulameen River at river mile 32.5, only two other areas of difficult passage exist in the system, Similkameen Falls (a series of chutes) and the steep, narrow lower section of the Ashnola River. 51 references, 18 figures, 25 tables.

  6. Presence of Breeding Birds Improves Body Condition for a Crocodilian Nest Protector

    PubMed Central

    Nell, Lucas A.; Frederick, Peter C.; Mazzotti, Frank J.; Vliet, Kent A.; Brandt, Laura A.

    2016-01-01

    Ecological associations where one species enhances habitat for another nearby species (facilitations) shape fundamental community dynamics and can promote niche expansion, thereby influencing how and where species persist and coexist. For the many breeding birds facing high nest-predation pressure, enemy-free space can be gained by nesting near more formidable animals for physical protection. While the benefits to protected species seem well documented, very few studies have explored whether and how protector species are affected by nest protection associations. Long-legged wading birds (Pelecaniformes and Ciconiiformes) actively choose nesting sites above resident American alligators (Alligator mississippiensis), apparently to take advantage of the protection from mammalian nest predators that alligator presence offers. Previous research has shown that wading bird nesting colonies could provide substantial food for alligators in the form of dropped chicks. We compared alligator body condition in similar habitat with and without wading bird nesting colonies present. Alligator morphometric body condition indices were significantly higher in colony than in non-colony locations, an effect that was statistically independent of a range of environmental variables. Since colonially nesting birds and crocodilians co-occur in many tropical and subtropical wetlands, our results highlight a potentially widespread keystone process between two ecologically important species-groups. These findings suggest the interaction is highly beneficial for both groups of actors, and illustrate how selective pressures may have acted to form and reinforce a strongly positive ecological interaction. PMID:26934602

  7. Presence of Breeding Birds Improves Body Condition for a Crocodilian Nest Protector.

    PubMed

    Nell, Lucas A; Frederick, Peter C; Mazzotti, Frank J; Vliet, Kent A; Brandt, Laura A

    2016-01-01

    Ecological associations where one species enhances habitat for another nearby species (facilitations) shape fundamental community dynamics and can promote niche expansion, thereby influencing how and where species persist and coexist. For the many breeding birds facing high nest-predation pressure, enemy-free space can be gained by nesting near more formidable animals for physical protection. While the benefits to protected species seem well documented, very few studies have explored whether and how protector species are affected by nest protection associations. Long-legged wading birds (Pelecaniformes and Ciconiiformes) actively choose nesting sites above resident American alligators (Alligator mississippiensis), apparently to take advantage of the protection from mammalian nest predators that alligator presence offers. Previous research has shown that wading bird nesting colonies could provide substantial food for alligators in the form of dropped chicks. We compared alligator body condition in similar habitat with and without wading bird nesting colonies present. Alligator morphometric body condition indices were significantly higher in colony than in non-colony locations, an effect that was statistically independent of a range of environmental variables. Since colonially nesting birds and crocodilians co-occur in many tropical and subtropical wetlands, our results highlight a potentially widespread keystone process between two ecologically important species-groups. These findings suggest the interaction is highly beneficial for both groups of actors, and illustrate how selective pressures may have acted to form and reinforce a strongly positive ecological interaction. PMID:26934602

  8. Molecular Breeding Algae For Improved Traits For The Conversion Of Waste To Fuels And Commodities.

    SciTech Connect

    Bagwell, C.

    2015-10-14

    This Exploratory LDRD aimed to develop molecular breeding methodology for biofuel algal strain improvement for applications in waste to energy / commodity conversion technologies. Genome shuffling technologies, specifically protoplast fusion, are readily available for the rapid production of genetic hybrids for trait improvement and have been used successfully in bacteria, yeast, plants and animals. However, genome fusion has not been developed for exploiting the remarkable untapped potential of eukaryotic microalgae for large scale integrated bio-conversion and upgrading of waste components to valued commodities, fuel and energy. The proposed molecular breeding technology is effectively sexual reproduction in algae; though compared to traditional breeding, the molecular route is rapid, high-throughput and permits selection / improvement of complex traits which cannot be accomplished by traditional genetics. Genome fusion technologies are the cutting edge of applied biotechnology. The goals of this Exploratory LDRD were to 1) establish reliable methodology for protoplast production among diverse microalgal strains, and 2) demonstrate genome fusion for hybrid strain production using a single gene encoded trait as a proof of the concept.

  9. From phenotyping towards breeding strategies: using in vivo indicator traits and genetic markers to improve meat quality in an endangered pig breed.

    PubMed

    Biermann, A D M; Yin, T; König von Borstel, U U; Rübesam, K; Kuhn, B; König, S

    2015-06-01

    In endangered and local pig breeds of small population sizes, production has to focus on alternative niche markets with an emphasis on specific product and meat quality traits to achieve economic competiveness. For designing breeding strategies on meat quality, an adequate performance testing scheme focussing on phenotyped selection candidates is required. For the endangered German pig breed 'Bunte Bentheimer' (BB), no breeding program has been designed until now, and no performance testing scheme has been implemented. For local breeds, mainly reared in small-scale production systems, a performance test based on in vivo indicator traits might be a promising alternative in order to increase genetic gain for meat quality traits. Hence, the main objective of this study was to design and evaluate breeding strategies for the improvement of meat quality within the BB breed using in vivo indicator traits and genetic markers. The in vivo indicator trait was backfat thickness measured by ultrasound (BFiv), and genetic markers were allele variants at the ryanodine receptor 1 (RYR1) locus. In total, 1116 records of production and meat quality traits were collected, including 613 in vivo ultrasound measurements and 713 carcass and meat quality records. Additionally, 700 pigs were genotyped at the RYR1 locus. Data were used (1) to estimate genetic (co)variance components for production and meat quality traits, (2) to estimate allele substitution effects at the RYR1 locus using a selective genotyping approach and (3) to evaluate breeding strategies on meat quality by combining results from quantitative-genetic and molecular-genetic approaches. Heritability for the production trait BFiv was 0.27, and 0.48 for backfat thickness measured on carcass. Estimated heritabilities for meat quality traits ranged from 0.14 for meat brightness to 0.78 for the intramuscular fat content (IMF). Genetic correlations between BFiv and IMF were higher than estimates based on carcass backfat

  10. Selection of pigs for improved coping with health and environmental challenges: breeding for resistance or tolerance?

    PubMed

    Guy, Sarita Z Y; Thomson, Peter C; Hermesch, Susanne

    2012-01-01

    The benefits of improved health and welfare in pigs have driven refinements in management and selection practices, one of which is the production of pig phenotypes that can maintain health and productivity by improving response against pathogens. Selection has traditionally been made for host resistance; but the alternative host defence mechanism-host tolerance-is now being considered, as breeding for disease tolerance allows maintenance of high performance across environments of increasing pathogenic load. A distinction must be made between these two mechanisms as they vary in their influence on host-pathogen interactions and pathogen evolution, and consequently on the results of breeding programs. Many pig production studies have failed to distinguish between resistance and tolerance; although a distinction may not always be possible. This article reviews current perspectives in selective breeding for disease resistance and tolerance in growing pigs, and the attendant industry implications. To assess the viability of breeding for resistance and/or tolerance for improved response to disease and other environmental challenges, we propose the use of routine farm records, instead of data measurements taken from laboratory experiments. Consequently, a number of factors need to be taken into account simultaneously for a multidimensional modeling approach. This includes not only genotype and disease variables, but also descriptors of the environment, as well as any possible interactions. It may not be feasible to record individual pathogen loads, and therefore true tolerance, on farm using routinely collected data. However, it may be estimated with group (farm) means, or other proxy measures. Although this results in a bias, this may still be useful for modeling and quantifying resistance and tolerance. We can then quantify success of selection, and this may enable us to decide whether to select for disease resistance versus disease tolerance. PMID:23248641

  11. Opposing effects on glutathione and reactive oxygen metabolites of sex, habitat, and spring date, but no effect of increased breeding density in great tits (Parus major)

    PubMed Central

    Isaksson, Caroline

    2013-01-01

    Abstract Oxidative stress (i.e., more oxidants than antioxidants) has been proposed as a proximate currency in life-history trade-offs, which if studied in an ecological setting allow a more realistic perspective on the origin and evolution of trade-offs. Therefore, the aim here was to investigate the impact of ecological and individual factors for variation in markers of oxidative stress using both experimental and correlational data. Total glutathione (tGSH), oxidized glutathione (GSSG), plasma antioxidant capacity (OXY), and plasma-reactive oxygen metabolites (ROM) were measured in more than 700 breeding great tits (Parus major). The main results revealed a pronounced sex difference, with females having lower ROM and OXY, but higher tGSH compared with males. In addition, birds breeding in the evergreen areas had higher tGSH compared with those in the deciduous habitat, but the experimentally manipulated breeding density had no significant effect on any of the redox markers. Independent of the sex differences, the larger the reproductive investment the lower the ROM of both males and females. Taken together, the extracellular markers – ROM and OXY – revealed similar results and were highly correlated. Interestingly, the direction of their effects was in the opposite direction to the endogenously synthesized tGSH and GSSG. This highlights the need to combine extracellular markers with endogenously synthesized antioxidants to understand its implications for the origin and evolution of trade-offs in an ecological setting. Oxidative stress has been proposed as a proximate currency in life-history trade-offs, which if studied in an ecological setting allow a more realistic perspective on the origin and evolution of trade-offs. Here multiple markers of oxidative stress were analysed in wild great tits. The results reveal that the endogenously synthesized antioxidant glutathione and markers of plasma oxidative stress are affected in opposing directions with regard

  12. Opposing effects on glutathione and reactive oxygen metabolites of sex, habitat, and spring date, but no effect of increased breeding density in great tits (Parus major).

    PubMed

    Isaksson, Caroline

    2013-08-01

    Oxidative stress (i.e., more oxidants than antioxidants) has been proposed as a proximate currency in life-history trade-offs, which if studied in an ecological setting allow a more realistic perspective on the origin and evolution of trade-offs. Therefore, the aim here was to investigate the impact of ecological and individual factors for variation in markers of oxidative stress using both experimental and correlational data. Total glutathione (tGSH), oxidized glutathione (GSSG), plasma antioxidant capacity (OXY), and plasma-reactive oxygen metabolites (ROM) were measured in more than 700 breeding great tits (Parus major). The main results revealed a pronounced sex difference, with females having lower ROM and OXY, but higher tGSH compared with males. In addition, birds breeding in the evergreen areas had higher tGSH compared with those in the deciduous habitat, but the experimentally manipulated breeding density had no significant effect on any of the redox markers. Independent of the sex differences, the larger the reproductive investment the lower the ROM of both males and females. Taken together, the extracellular markers - ROM and OXY - revealed similar results and were highly correlated. Interestingly, the direction of their effects was in the opposite direction to the endogenously synthesized tGSH and GSSG. This highlights the need to combine extracellular markers with endogenously synthesized antioxidants to understand its implications for the origin and evolution of trade-offs in an ecological setting. Oxidative stress has been proposed as a proximate currency in life-history trade-offs, which if studied in an ecological setting allow a more realistic perspective on the origin and evolution of trade-offs. Here multiple markers of oxidative stress were analysed in wild great tits. The results reveal that the endogenously synthesized antioxidant glutathione and markers of plasma oxidative stress are affected in opposing directions with regard to sex

  13. Importance of Indigenous Breeds of Chicken for Rural Economy and Their Improvements for Higher Production Performance

    PubMed Central

    Padhi, Mahendra Kumar

    2016-01-01

    Indigenous/native breeds of chickens are playing an important role in rural economies in most of the developing and underdeveloped countries. They play a major role for the rural poor and marginalised section of the people with respect to their subsidiary income and also provide them with nutritious chicken egg and meat for their own consumption. Performance of native fowl can be improved by change in husbandry, feeding, and better health cover. However, genetic improvement may be made either through selection and crossbreeding or by utilisation of both selection and crossbreeding. Improvement through selection may be time consuming but the improvement will be permanent. Through crossbreeding improvement may be faster but research has to aim for the production of native-type birds with higher production potential. In the present review efforts have been made to present the importance of native fowl to rural economy and their improvement for higher production performance. PMID:27144053

  14. Lemhi River Habitat Improvement Study, 1985 Final Report.

    SciTech Connect

    Dorratcaque, Dennis E.

    1986-02-01

    The objective was to develop methods for improving anadromous fish passage in the Lemhi River in east central Idaho. Alternatives assessed include flow concentration, fish screen improvement, groundwater augmentation, groundwater irrigation, water withdrawal reduction, return flow improvement, sprinkler irrigation, storage, and trap and haul. (ACR)

  15. Natural Propagation and Habitat Improvement, Volume 1, Oregon, 1985 Annual and Final Reports.

    SciTech Connect

    McDonald, Ken

    1986-10-01

    The Hot Springs Fork of the Collawash River is a major sub-drainage in the Clackamas River drainage. Emphasis species for natural production are spring chinook, coho salmon, and winter steelhead. Increased natural production appears limited by a lack of quality rearing habitat. Habitat complexity over approximately 70% of accessible area to anadromous fish has been reduced over the last 40 years by numerous factors. Natural passage barriers limit anadromous fish access to over 7 miles of high quality habitat. In the first year of a multi-year effort to improve fish habitat in the Hot Springs Fork drainage, passage enhancement on two tributaries and channel rehabilitation on one of those tributaries was completed. Three waterfalls on Nohorn Creek were evaluated and passage improved on the uppermost waterfall to provide steelhead full access to 2.4 miles of good quality habitat. The work was completed in October 1985 and involved blasting three jump pools and two holding pools into the waterfall. On Pansy Creek, four potential passage barriers were evaluated and passage improvement work conducted on two logjams and one waterfall. Minor modifications were made to a waterfall to increase flow into a side channel which allows passage around the waterfall. Channel rehabilitation efforts on Pansy Creek (RM 0.0 to 0.3) to increase low flow pool rearing habitat and spawning habitat including blasting five pools into areas of bedrock substrate and using a track-mounted backhoe to construct instream structures. On site materials were used to construct three log sills, three boulder berms, a boulder flow deflector, and five log and boulder structures. Also, an alcove was excavated to provide overwinter rearing habitat. Pre-project monitoring consisting of physical and biological data collection was completed in the project area.

  16. Identifying malaria vector breeding habitats with remote sensing data and terrain-based landscape indices in Zambia

    PubMed Central

    2010-01-01

    Background Malaria, caused by the parasite Plasmodium falciparum, is a significant source of morbidity and mortality in southern Zambia. In the Mapanza Chiefdom, where transmission is seasonal, Anopheles arabiensis is the dominant malaria vector. The ability to predict larval habitats can help focus control measures. Methods A survey was conducted in March-April 2007, at the end of the rainy season, to identify and map locations of water pooling and the occurrence anopheline larval habitats; this was repeated in October 2007 at the end of the dry season and in March-April 2008 during the next rainy season. Logistic regression and generalized linear mixed modeling were applied to assess the predictive value of terrain-based landscape indices along with LandSat imagery to identify aquatic habitats and, especially, those with anopheline mosquito larvae. Results Approximately two hundred aquatic habitat sites were identified with 69 percent positive for anopheline mosquitoes. Nine species of anopheline mosquitoes were identified, of which, 19% were An. arabiensis. Terrain-based landscape indices combined with LandSat predicted sites with water, sites with anopheline mosquitoes and sites specifically with An. arabiensis. These models were especially successful at ruling out potential locations, but had limited ability in predicting which anopheline species inhabited aquatic sites. Terrain indices derived from 90 meter Shuttle Radar Topography Mission (SRTM) digital elevation data (DEM) were better at predicting water drainage patterns and characterizing the landscape than those derived from 30 m Advanced Spaceborne Thermal Emission and Reflection Radiometer (ASTER) DEM. Conclusions The low number of aquatic habitats available and the ability to locate the limited number of aquatic habitat locations for surveillance, especially those containing anopheline larvae, suggest that larval control maybe a cost-effective control measure in the fight against malaria in Zambia and

  17. Umatilla River Subbasin Fish Habitat Improvement Program, 1996-2003 Summary Report.

    SciTech Connect

    St. Hilaire, Danny R.; Montgomery, Michael; Bailey, Timothy D.

    2005-01-01

    This annual report is in fulfillment of contractual obligations with Bonneville Power Administration (BPA), which is the funding source for the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife's (ODFW), Umatilla River Subbasin Fish Habitat Improvement Program (Program). The last Annual Program Report was submitted in 1997, and described projects undertaken in 1995. This report describes Program activities carried out in 2003, along with a summary of projects undertaken during the years 1996 through 2002. The Program works cooperatively with private landowners to develop long-term restoration agreements, under which, passive and active Habitat Improvement Projects are conducted. Historically, projects have included livestock exclusion fencing (passive restoration) to protect riparian habitats, along with the installation of instream structures (active restoration) to address erosion and improve fish habitat. In recent years, the focus of active restoration has shifted to bioengineering treatments and, more recently, to channel re-design and re-construction aimed at improving fish habitat, by restoring stable channel function. This report provides a summary table of past projects (1996-2002), along with a text description of more extensive habitat improvement projects, including: (1) Implementation of a four-phased project on the Lobato property (Birch Creek) beginning in 1996 and involving a demonstration bioengineering site and riparian improvements (fencing, planting), (2) Implementation of stable channel design/instream structure placement on the Houser property, East Birch Creek, beginning in 1998, an (3) Implementation of a joint, US Army Corps of Engineers/ODFW (cost share) project beginning in 2001 on the Brogoitti property, East Birch Creek, which involved implementation of stable channel design/construction and riparian improvement treatments.

  18. Transcriptome analysis of a barley breeding program examines gene expression diversity and reveals target genes for malting quality improvement

    PubMed Central

    2010-01-01

    Background Advanced cycle breeding utilizes crosses among elite lines and is a successful method to develop new inbreds. However, it results in a reduction in genetic diversity within the breeding population. The development of malting barley varieties requires the adherence to a narrow malting quality profile and thus the use of advanced cycle breeding strategies. Although attention has been focused on diversity in gene expression and its association with genetic diversity, there are no studies performed in a single breeding program examining the implications that consecutive cycles of breeding have on gene expression variation and identifying the variability still available for future improvement. Results Fifteen lines representing the historically important six-rowed malting barley breeding program of the University of Minnesota were genotyped with 1,524 SNPs, phenotypically examined for six malting quality traits, and analyzed for transcript accumulation during germination using the Barley1 GeneChip array. Significant correlation was detected between genetic and transcript-level variation. We observed a reduction in both genetic and gene expression diversity through the breeding process, although the expression of many genes have not been fixed. A high number of quality-related genes whose expression was fixed during the breeding process was identified, indicating that much of the diversity reduction was associated with the improvement of the complex phenotype "malting quality", the main goal of the University of Minnesota breeding program. We also identified 49 differentially expressed genes between the most recent lines of the program that were correlated with one or more of the six primary malting quality traits. These genes constitute potential targets for the improvement of malting quality within the breeding program. Conclusions The present study shows the repercussion of advanced cycle breeding on gene expression diversity within an important barley

  19. Umatilla River Subbasin Fish Habitat Improvement Program, 2004-2005 Annual Report.

    SciTech Connect

    St. Hilaire, Danny R.

    2006-02-01

    This annual report is in fulfillment of contractual obligations with Bonneville Power Administration (BPA), which is the funding source for the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife's (ODFW), Umatilla River Subbasin Fish Habitat Improvement Program (Program). The Program works cooperatively with private landowners to develop long-term restoration, under which, passive and active Habitat Improvement Projects are conducted. Historically, projects have included livestock exclusion fencing (passive restoration) to protect riparian habitats, along with the installation of instream structures (active restoration) to address erosion and improve fish habitat. In recent years, the focus of active restoration has shifted to bioengineering treatments and, more recently, to channel re-design and reconstruction aimed at improving fish habitat, by restoring stable channel function. This report provides a summary of Program activities for the 2004 calendar year (January 1 through December 31, 2004), within each of the four main project phases, including: (1) Implementation--Pre-Work, (2) Implementation--On Site Development, (3) Operation and Maintenance, and (4) Monitoring and Evaluation. This report also summarizes Program Administrative, Interagency Coordination, and Public Education activities.

  20. An annotated bibliography of selected guides for stream habitat improvement in the Pacific Northwest

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Keim, R.F.; Price, A.B.; Hardin, T. S.; Skaugset, Arne E.; Bateman, D.S.; Gresswell, R.E.; Tesch, S. D.

    2004-01-01

    This annotated bibliography is a response to widespread interest in stream habitat improvement in the Pacific Northwest by land managers, governmental and nongovernmental organizations, and the lay public. Several guides to stream habitat improvement have been written in the past, but may not be easily accessible to people from diverse backgrounds. This annotated bibliography reviews 11 guides to stream habitat improvement so that readers can find literature appropriate to their needs. All reviews begin with summaries of the contents, stated audiences, and goals of each guide. Reviews also include subjective comments on the strengths and weaknesses of each guide. Finally, this bibliography includes recommendations of guides and combinations of guides judged most useful for a range of purposes. 

  1. Resource selection and space use by sea ducks during the non-breeding season: implications for habitat conservation planning in urbanized estuaries

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    De La Cruz, Susan E. W.; Eadie, John M.; Miles, A. Keith; Yee, Julie; Spragens, Kyle A.; Palm, Eric C.; Takekawa, John Y.

    2014-01-01

    Wide-ranging marine birds rely on multiple habitats for wintering, breeding, and migrating, and their conservation may be dependent on protecting networks of key areas. Urbanized estuaries are critical wintering and stopover areas for many declining sea ducks in North America; however, conservation measures within estuaries are difficult to establish given lack of knowledge about habitat use by these species and the variety of competing human interests. We applied hierarchical modeling to evaluate resource selection of sea ducks (surf scoters, Melanitta perspicillata) wintering in San Francisco Bay, California, USA, a large and highly urbanized estuary. We also examined their distribution, home range, and movements with respect to key habitat features and regions within the estuary. Herring roe was the strongest predictor of bird locations; however, eelgrass, water depth and salinity were also highly-ranked, with sea ducks using deeper areas of higher salinity associated with herring roe and eelgrass presence during mid-winter. Sea ducks were also strongly associated with ferry routes, suggesting these areas may contain resources that are too important to avoid and emphasizing the need to better understand water traffic effects. Movements and home range size differed between males and females in early winter but became more similar in late winter. Birds traveled farther and used several sub-bays in early winter compared to mid-winter when herring roe availability peaked in the Central Bay. Our findings identified key environmental variables, highlighted core use areas, and documented critical periods for consideration when developing conservation plans for sea ducks in urbanized estuaries.

  2. Improving wildlife habitat model performance: Sensitivity to the scale and detail of vegetation measurements

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Roberts, Lance Jay, Jr.

    Monitoring the impacts of resource use and landscape change on wildlife habitat over large areas is a daunting assignment. Forest land managers could benefit from linking the frequent decisions of resource use (timber harvesting) with a system of wildlife habitat accounting, but to date these tools are not widely available. I examined aspects of wildlife habitat modeling that: (in Chapter 2) could potentially lead to the establishment of wildlife habitat accounting within a resource decision support tool, (in Chapter 3) improve our theoretical understanding and methods to interpret the accuracy of wildlife habitat models, (in Chapter 4) explore the effects of vegetation classification systems on wildlife habitat model results, and (in Chapter 5) show that forest structural estimates from satellite imagery can improve potential habitat distribution models (GAP) for forest bird species. The majority of the analyses in this dissertation were done using a forest resource inventory developed by the State of Michigan (IFMAP). Paired with field vegetation and bird samples from sites across the lower peninsula of Michigan, we compared the relative accuracy of wildlife habitat relationship models built with plot-scale vegetation samples and stand-scale forest inventory maps. Recursive partitioning trees were used to build wildlife habitat models for 30 bird species. The habitat distribution maps from the Michigan Gap Analysis (MIGAP) were used as a baseline for comparison of model accuracy results. Both the plot and stand-scale measurements achieved high accuracy and there were few large differences between plot and stand-scale models for any individual species. Where the plot and stand-scale models were different, they tended to be species associated with mixed habitats. This may be evidence that scale of vegetation measurement has a larger influence on species associated with edges and ecotones. Habitat models that were built solely with land cover data were less accurate

  3. Camas Creek (Meyers Cove) Anadromous Species Habitat Improvement: Annual Report 1990.

    SciTech Connect

    Seaberg, Glen

    1990-06-01

    Populations of wild salmon and steelhead in the Middle Fork of the Salmon River are at historical lows. Until passage and flow problems associated with Columbia River dams are corrected to reduce mortalities of migrating smolts, continuance of habitat enhancements that decrease sediment loads, increase vegetative cover, remove passage barriers, and provide habitat diversity is imperative to maintain surviving populations of these specially adapted fish. In 1987-1988, 4.3 miles of fence was constructed establishing a riparian livestock exclosure. One end-gap and two water-crossing corridors were constructed in 1989 to complete the fence system. Areas within the exclosure have been fertilized to promote tree and shrub root growth and meadow recovery. A stream crossing ford was stabilized with angular cobble. Streambank stabilization/habitat cover work was completed at three sites and three additional habitat structures were placed. Extensive inventories were completed to identify habitat available to anadromous fish. Streambank stabilization work was limited to extremely unstable banks, minimizing radical alterations to an active stream channel. Enhancement activities will improve spawning, incubation, and rearing habitat for wild populations of steelhead trout and chinook salmon. Anadromous species population increases resulting from these enhancement activities will provide partial compensation for downstream losses resulting from hydroelectric developments on the Columbia River system. 10 refs., 11 figs., 5 tabs.

  4. Particle Backtracking Improves Breeding Subpopulation Discrimination and Natal-Source Identification in Mixed Populations

    PubMed Central

    Fraker, Michael E.; Anderson, Eric J.; Brodnik, Reed M.; Carreon-Martinez, Lucia; DeVanna, Kristen M.; Fryer, Brian J.; Heath, Daniel D.; Reichert, Julie M.; Ludsin, Stuart A.

    2015-01-01

    We provide a novel method to improve the use of natural tagging approaches for subpopulation discrimination and source-origin identification in aquatic and terrestrial animals with a passive dispersive phase. Our method integrates observed site-referenced biological information on individuals in mixed populations with a particle-tracking model to retrace likely dispersal histories prior to capture (i.e., particle backtracking). To illustrate and test our approach, we focus on western Lake Erie’s yellow perch (Perca flavescens) population during 2006–2007, using microsatellite DNA and otolith microchemistry from larvae and juveniles as natural tags. Particle backtracking showed that not all larvae collected near a presumed hatching location may have originated there, owing to passive drift during the larval stage that was influenced by strong river- and wind-driven water circulation. Re-assigning larvae to their most probable hatching site (based on probabilistic dispersal trajectories from the particle backtracking model) improved the use of genetics and otolith microchemistry to discriminate among local breeding subpopulations. This enhancement, in turn, altered (and likely improved) the estimated contributions of each breeding subpopulation to the mixed population of juvenile recruits. Our findings indicate that particle backtracking can complement existing tools used to identify the origin of individuals in mixed populations, especially in flow-dominated systems. PMID:25799555

  5. Micronutrient fortification of plants through plant breeding: can it improve nutrition in man at low cost?

    PubMed

    Bouis, Howarth E

    2003-05-01

    Can commonly-eaten food staple crops be developed that fortify their seeds with essential minerals and vitamins? Can farmers be induced to grow such varieties? If so, would this result in a marked improvement in human nutrition at a lower cost than existing nutrition interventions? An interdisciplinary international effort is underway to breed for mineral- and vitamin-dense varieties of rice, wheat, maize, beans and cassava for release to farmers in developing countries. The biofortification strategy seeks to take advantage of the consistent daily consumption of large amounts of food staples by all family members, including women and children as they are most at risk for micronutrient malnutrition. As a consequence of the predominance of food staples in the diets of the poor, this strategy implicitly targets low-income households. After the one-time investment is made to develop seeds that fortify themselves, recurrent costs are low and germplasm may be shared internationally. It is this multiplier aspect of plant breeding across time and distance that makes it so cost-effective. Once in place, the biofortified crop system is highly sustainable. Nutritionally-improved varieties will continue to be grown and consumed year after year, even if government attention and international funding for micronutrient issues fades. Biofortification provides a truly feasible means of reaching malnourished populations in relatively remote rural areas, delivering naturally-fortified foods to population groups with limited access to commercially-marketed fortified foods that are more readily available in urban areas. Biofortification and commercial fortification are, therefore, highly complementary. Breeding for higher trace mineral density in seeds will not incur a yield penalty. Mineral-packed seeds sell themselves to farmers because, as recent research has shown, these trace minerals are essential in helping plants resist disease and other environmental stresses. More seedlings

  6. Molecular Breeding Strategy and Challenges Towards Improvement of Blast Disease Resistance in Rice Crop

    PubMed Central

    Ashkani, Sadegh; Rafii, Mohd Y.; Shabanimofrad, Mahmoodreza; Miah, Gous; Sahebi, Mahbod; Azizi, Parisa; Tanweer, Fatah A.; Akhtar, Mohd Sayeed; Nasehi, Abbas

    2015-01-01

    Rice is a staple and most important security food crop consumed by almost half of the world’s population. More rice production is needed due to the rapid population growth in the world. Rice blast caused by the fungus, Magnaporthe oryzae is one of the most destructive diseases of this crop in different part of the world. Breakdown of blast resistance is the major cause of yield instability in several rice growing areas. There is a need to develop strategies providing long-lasting disease resistance against a broad spectrum of pathogens, giving protection for a long time over a broad geographic area, promising for sustainable rice production in the future. So far, molecular breeding approaches involving DNA markers, such as QTL mapping, marker-aided selection, gene pyramiding, allele mining and genetic transformation have been used to develop new resistant rice cultivars. Such techniques now are used as a low-cost, high-throughput alternative to conventional methods allowing rapid introgression of disease resistance genes into susceptible varieties as well as the incorporation of multiple genes into individual lines for more durable blast resistance. The paper briefly reviewed the progress of studies on this aspect to provide the interest information for rice disease resistance breeding. This review includes examples of how advanced molecular method have been used in breeding programs for improving blast resistance. New information and knowledge gained from previous research on the recent strategy and challenges towards improvement of blast disease such as pyramiding disease resistance gene for creating new rice varieties with high resistance against multiple diseases will undoubtedly provide new insights into the rice disease control. PMID:26635817

  7. Natural Propagation and Habitat Improvement, Volume 2, Idaho, 1984 Final and Annual Reports.

    SciTech Connect

    Hair, Don

    1986-01-01

    In 1984, and under the auspices of the Northwest Power Planning Council, the Clear-water National Forest and the Bonneville Power Administration entered into a contractual agreement to improve anadromous fish habitat in Lolo Creek. This was to be the second and final year of instream enhancement work in Lolo Creek, a major tributary to the Clearwater River. The project was again entitled Lolo Creek Habitat Improvement (No.84-6) which was scheduled from April 1, 1984, through March 31, 1985. Project costs were not to exceed $39,109. The following report is a description of the project objectives, methodology, results, and conclusions of this year's work, based on the knowledge and experience gained through 2 years of enhancement work. The primary objective was to partially mitigate the juvenile and adult anadromous fish losses accrued through hydroelectric development in the Columbia and Snake River systems by enhancing the spawning and rearing habitats of selected Clearwater River tributaries for spring chinook salmon and summer steelhead trout. The enhancement was designed to ameliorate the ''limiting production factors'' by the in-stream placement of habitat structures that would positively alter the pool-riffle structure and increase the quality of over-winter habitat.

  8. Forb, Insect, and Soil Response to Burning and Mowing Wyoming Big Sagebrush in Greater Sage-Grouse Breeding Habitat

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hess, Jennifer E.; Beck, Jeffrey L.

    2014-04-01

    Wyoming big sagebrush ( Artemisia tridentata wyomingensis A. t. Nutt. ssp. wyomingensis Beetle and Young) communities provide structure and forbs and insects needed by greater sage-grouse ( Centrocercus urophasianus) for growth and survival. We evaluated forb, insect, and soil responses at six mowed and 19 prescribed burned sites compared to 25, paired and untreated reference sites. Sites were classified by treatment type, soil type, season, and decade of treatment (sites burned during 1990-1999 and sites burned or mowed during 2000-2006). Our objective was to evaluate differences in ten habitat attributes known to influence sage-grouse nesting and brood rearing to compare responses among treatment scenarios. Contrary to desired outcomes, treating Wyoming big sagebrush through prescribed burning or mowing may not stimulate cover or increase nutrition in food forbs, or increase insect abundance or indicators of soil quality compared with reference sites. In some cases, prescribed burning showed positive results compared with mowing such as greater forb crude protein content (%), ant (Hymenoptera; no./trap), beetle (Coleoptera/no./trap), and grasshopper abundance (Orthoptera; no./sweep), and total (%) soil carbon and nitrogen, but of these attributes, only grasshopper abundance was enhanced at burned sites compared with reference sites in 2008. Mowing did not promote a statistically significant increase in sage-grouse nesting or early brood-rearing habitat attributes such as cover or nutritional quality of food forbs, or counts of ants, beetles, or grasshoppers compared with reference sites.

  9. Commerical harvest of western juniper and habitat improvement

    SciTech Connect

    Nader, G.; Young, J.A.

    1994-12-31

    Western juniper makes excellent stove wood, but the woodlands are located to far from population centers to make shipment of the relatively low density wood economically feasible. The fibers of juniper wood have been shown in laboratory tests to possess excellent characteristics for the manufacture of molded wood fiber products. The size and growth form of the trees precludes the large scale production of dimensional lumber. The abundant essential oils in the foliage may have commercial value. Certainly the waste from any harvesting and manufacturing process with western juniper would be rich in potential energy. What is proposed is the development of a manufacturing process from western juniper biomass, and using the monetary value of this material to pay for the cost of range improvement on the harvested woodlands. The development of such a commercial operation is venture capitalism at its highest level. The potential rewards are the solving of a major environmental problem while providing jobs in rural areas.

  10. Landscape history improves detection of marginal habitats on semi-natural grasslands.

    PubMed

    Pitkänen, Timo P; Kumpulainen, J; Lehtinen, J; Sihvonen, M; Käyhkö, N

    2016-01-01

    Semi-natural grassland habitats have markedly declined from their historical coverage, thus causing substantial losses for agricultural biodiversity and establishing a consequent need to spot the remaining habitat patches. These patches are generally remnants of once larger habitat areas, formed by uninterrupted and low-intensity management for centuries, but then later being isolated and fragmented into smaller pieces. In the light of this development, past landscape phases have a crucial role for the present existence of semi-natural grasslands. The importance of historical factors has been indicated in many studies but evaluation of their added value, or actual site-specific effects compared to observations of only the present landscape characteristics, is not generally provided. As data related to the past is often difficult to obtain, tedious to process and challenging to interpret, assessment of its advantages and related effects - or consequences of potential exclusion - would be needed. In this study, we used maximum entropy approach to model the distribution of Fumewort (Corydalis solida) which in the study area is a good indicator of valuable semi-natural habitats. We constructed three different models - one based on only the contemporary environment with expected indicators of habitat stability, one solely on the historical landscape phases and long-term dynamics, and one combining variables from the past and the present. Predictions of the three models were validated and compared with each other, followed by an analysis indicating the similarity of model results with known Fumewort occurrences. Our results indicate that present landscapes may provide workable surrogates to delineate larger core habitats, but utilization of historical data markedly improves the detection of small outlying patches. These conclusions emphasize the importance of previous landscape phases particularly in detecting marginal semi-natural grassland habitats, existing in

  11. An Improved Quantum-Behaved Particle Swarm Optimization Algorithm with Elitist Breeding for Unconstrained Optimization

    PubMed Central

    Yang, Zhen-Lun; Wu, Angus; Min, Hua-Qing

    2015-01-01

    An improved quantum-behaved particle swarm optimization with elitist breeding (EB-QPSO) for unconstrained optimization is presented and empirically studied in this paper. In EB-QPSO, the novel elitist breeding strategy acts on the elitists of the swarm to escape from the likely local optima and guide the swarm to perform more efficient search. During the iterative optimization process of EB-QPSO, when criteria met, the personal best of each particle and the global best of the swarm are used to generate new diverse individuals through the transposon operators. The new generated individuals with better fitness are selected to be the new personal best particles and global best particle to guide the swarm for further solution exploration. A comprehensive simulation study is conducted on a set of twelve benchmark functions. Compared with five state-of-the-art quantum-behaved particle swarm optimization algorithms, the proposed EB-QPSO performs more competitively in all of the benchmark functions in terms of better global search capability and faster convergence rate. PMID:26064085

  12. Hybrid breeding in wheat: technologies to improve hybrid wheat seed production.

    PubMed

    Whitford, Ryan; Fleury, Delphine; Reif, Jochen C; Garcia, Melissa; Okada, Takashi; Korzun, Viktor; Langridge, Peter

    2013-12-01

    Global food security demands the development and delivery of new technologies to increase and secure cereal production on finite arable land without increasing water and fertilizer use. There are several options for boosting wheat yields, but most offer only small yield increases. Wheat is an inbred plant, and hybrids hold the potential to deliver a major lift in yield and will open a wide range of new breeding opportunities. A series of technological advances are needed as a base for hybrid wheat programmes. These start with major changes in floral development and architecture to separate the sexes and force outcrossing. Male sterility provides the best method to block self-fertilization, and modifying the flower structure will enhance pollen access. The recent explosion in genomic resources and technologies provides new opportunities to overcome these limitations. This review outlines the problems with existing hybrid wheat breeding systems and explores molecular-based technologies that could improve the hybrid production system to reduce hybrid seed production costs, a prerequisite for a commercial hybrid wheat system. PMID:24179097

  13. The effect of Bacillus thuringiensis israelensis [H-14] on emergence of Mansonia mosquitos from natural breeding habitat.

    PubMed

    Chang, M S; Ho, B C; Chan, K L

    1990-09-01

    The measurement of the ultimate effects of the microbial insecticides on mosquito density is best obtained by assessment of adult populations. The main aims of this study are: (1) to assess the effect of Bacillus thuringiensis israelensis (Bti) FC Skeetal and Bactimos briquettes on the emergence rate of Mansonia bonneae developed from the introduced first-instar stage larvae and (2) to measure the effect of these two formulations of insecticides on Mansonia adult populations emerging from the natural breeding plots. Bti Skeetal and Bactimos briquettes at the lower applied dosages of 2.3 kg/ha and 1 briquette case/20 m2 respectively achieved 39-40% pupation rates and 31.5-34.2% adult emergence rates. At these low applied dosages, there was little or no direct effect on pupation from the surviving larvae and thereafter on the emergence of adults from the pupae. A two-fold increase in dosage, however, produced a drastic decline in the pupation rate and adult emergence rate. The rates dropped to 6.5% (pupation) and 4.3% (adult emergence) of the total larvae for Bactimos briquettes and to merely 1.5% (pupation) and 1.3% (adult emergence) of the total larvae for Skeetal. In studying the effect of Bti on the field populations of Mansonia mosquitos, two plots each were treated with Bactimos at 1 briquette case/10 m2 and Skeetal at 4.6 kg/ha. A wooden pyramid-shaped screened cage was placed on a cluster of host plants for a period of 2 weeks to trap the emerging adult mosquitoes. There were a total of 24 clusters of host plants in each plot.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 250 WORDS) PMID:1981631

  14. Middle Fork and Upper Salmon River Habitat Improvement Implementation Plan, FY 1988-1992.

    SciTech Connect

    Andrews, John; Everson, Larry B.

    1988-02-01

    This document presents an implementation plan for completing the phase II portion of the Middle Fork and Upper Salmon River Habitat Improvement Agreement. Underseeding of spawning adult salmon and steelhead, high instream sediment levels, a lack of habitat diversity in the form of overhanging riparian vegetation and edge, and barriers to both adult and juvenile anadromous fish migration were identified as the principal factors limiting anadromous fish production in the project area. Underseeding is being addressed in other projects sponsored and funded by the Bonneville Power Administration while this implementation plan lays out a schedule for resolving the other identified limiting factors. The primary goal of this program is to increase the quality and quantity of anadromous fish habitat (spring chinook and summer steelhead) with an emphasis on the survival of the wild stocks. This goal will be achieved by reducing the impact of sediment loading, improving riparian vegetation, eliminating passage barriers, and increasing habitat diversity. Meeting the above goal will provide off-site mitigation under the manadate of the pacific northwest electric power planning and conservation act of 1980. Project implementation will follow measures in the Northwest Power Council's Columbia River Fish and Wildlife Program. 9 refs., 3 figs., 5 tabs.

  15. Fish Habitat Improvement Projects in the Fifteenmile Creek and Trout Creek Basins of Central Oregon: Field Review and Management Recommendations.

    SciTech Connect

    Kauffman, J. Boone

    1993-07-01

    A field review of stream habitat improvement project sites in the lower Deschutes River Basin was conducted by riparian ecology, fisheries, and hydrology specialists. Habitat management objectives, limiting factors, project implementation, land use history, and other factors were discussed at each site. This information, in conjunction with the reviewer`s field inspections of portions of a particular habitat project, provided the basis for this report.

  16. Natural Propagation and Habitat Improvement, Volume III, Idaho, 1982/1983 Final and Annual Reports.

    SciTech Connect

    Espinosa, Jr., F.

    1984-04-01

    In 1983 and under the auspices of the Northwest Power Act, the Clearwater National Forest and Bonneville Power Administration entered into an agreement to improve anadromous fish habitat in three major tributaries of the Clearwater River in Idaho. Phase I (FY 83) habitat enhancement was initiated and completed on Lolo, Crooked Fork, and White Sand Creeks. Enhancement of Lolo Creek involved the placement of 145 structures that were designed to alter the pool/riffle structure, increase diversity and cover, and purge in-stream sediment over 8.5 miles of stream length. Log weirs, organic debris, and boulder clusters were featured in the enhancement design. For the Lolo Project, the average unit cost was $186/structure. Spring chinook salmon was the primary target species and were observed utilizing the enhanced habitat in September. Enhancement of the upper Lochsa River tributaries involved the placement of 263 structures of which 200 were felled riparian trees and 63 were anchored organic debris. Enhancement occurred over 9.1 miles of stream reaches and was designed to increase diversity, cover, and spawning habitat. Depressed stocks of spring chinook salmon and summer steelhead trout were the focal points of the enhancement. The average cost per structure equaled $91/unit. Because of a mixed ownership pattern and in-channel variables, only 50 percent of the total stream distance was available for enhancement. 6 references, 68 figures.

  17. Rice Improvement Through Genome-Based Functional Analysis and Molecular Breeding in India.

    PubMed

    Agarwal, Pinky; Parida, Swarup K; Raghuvanshi, Saurabh; Kapoor, Sanjay; Khurana, Paramjit; Khurana, Jitendra P; Tyagi, Akhilesh K

    2016-12-01

    Rice is one of the main pillars of food security in India. Its improvement for higher yield in sustainable agriculture system is also vital to provide energy and nutritional needs of growing world population, expected to reach more than 9 billion by 2050. The high quality genome sequence of rice has provided a rich resource to mine information about diversity of genes and alleles which can contribute to improvement of useful agronomic traits. Defining the function of each gene and regulatory element of rice remains a challenge for the rice community in the coming years. Subsequent to participation in IRGSP, India has continued to contribute in the areas of diversity analysis, transcriptomics, functional genomics, marker development, QTL mapping and molecular breeding, through national and multi-national research programs. These efforts have helped generate resources for rice improvement, some of which have already been deployed to mitigate loss due to environmental stress and pathogens. With renewed efforts, Indian researchers are making new strides, along with the international scientific community, in both basic research and realization of its translational impact. PMID:26743769

  18. Irrigation Strategies and Crop Breeding As Complementary Measures for Improved Water Management and Ecosystem Services

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vico, G.; Manzoni, S.; Weih, M.; Porporato, A. M.

    2014-12-01

    The projected population growth and changes in climate and dietary habits will further increase the pressure on water resources globally. Within precision farming, a host of technical solutions has been developed to reduce water consumption for agricultural uses. Examples are the shift from scheduled to demand-based irrigation and the use of sophisticated water distribution techniques. The next frontier for a more sustainable agriculture is the combination of reduced water requirements with enhanced ecosystem services. Currently, staple grains are obtained from annuals crops. Enhanced ecosystem services could be obtained shifting from annual to perennial crops, obtained by means of targeted breeding. In fact, perennial plants, with their continuous soil cover and the higher allocation of resources to the below ground, contribute to the reduction of soil erosion, water and nutrient losses, while enhancing carbon sequestration in the root zone. We explore here the implications for water management at the field- to farm-scale of both improved irrigation methods and targeted breeding. A probabilistic description of the soil water balance and crop development is employed to quantify water requirements and yields and their inter-annual variability, as a function of rainfall patterns, soil and crop features. Optimal irrigation strategies are thus defined in terms of maximization of yield and minimization of required irrigation volumes and their inter-annual variability. The probabilistic model is parameterized based on an extensive meta-analysis of traits of co-generic annual and perennial species (including both selected and wild species) to explore the consequences for water requirements of shifting from annual to perennial crops under current and future climates. The larger and more developed roots of perennial crops may allow a better exploitation of soil water resources than annual species. At the same time, perennial crops may require adequate water supply for

  19. Lake Roosevelt Rainbow Trout : Habitat/Passage Improvement Project Annual Report 2000.

    SciTech Connect

    Sear, Sheri

    2001-02-01

    Lake Franklin D. Roosevelt was created with the completion of the Grand Coulee Dam in 1942. The lake stretches 151 miles up-stream to the International border between the United States and Canada at the 49th parallel. Increased recreational use, subsistence and sport fishing has resulted in intense interest and possible exploitation of the resources within the lake. Previous studies of the lake and its fishery have been limited. Early studies indicate that natural reproduction within the lake and tributaries are not sufficient to support a rainbow trout (Onchoryhnchus mykiss) fishery (Scholz et. al., 1988). These studies indicate that the rainbow trout population may be limited by lack of suitable habitat for spawning and rearing (Scholz et. al., 1988). The initial phase of this project (Phase I, baseline data collection- 1990-91) was directed at the assessment of limiting factors such as quality and quantity of available spawning gravel, identification of passage barriers, and assessment of other limiting factors. Population estimates were conducted using the Seber/LeCren removal/depletion method. After the initial assessment of stream parameters, several streams were selected for habitat/passage improvement projects (Phase II, implementation-1992-96). At the completion of project habitat improvements, the final phase (Phase III, monitoring) began. This phase will assess changes and gauge the success achieved through the improvements. The objective of the project is to correct passage barriers and improve habitat conditions of selected tributaries to Lake Roosevelt for adfluvial rainbow trout that utilize tributary streams for spawning and rearing. Streams with restorable habitats were selected for improvements. Completion of improvement efforts should increase the adfluvial rainbow trout contribution to the resident fishery in Lake Roosevelt. Three co-operating agencies, the Confederated Tribes of the Colville Reservation (CCT), the Spokane Tribe of Indians (STI

  20. Lake Roosevelt Rainbow Trout : Habitat/Passage Improvement Project Annual Report 1999.

    SciTech Connect

    Jones, Charles D.

    2000-02-01

    Lake Franklin D. Roosevelt was created with the completion of the Grand Coulee Dam in 1942. The lake stretches 151 miles up-stream to the International border between the United States and Canada at the 49th parallel. Increased recreational use, subsistence and sport fishing has resulted in intense interest and possible exploitation of the resources within the lake. Previous studies of the lake and its fishery have been limited. Early studies indicate that natural reproduction within the lake and tributaries are not sufficient to support a rainbow trout (Onchoryhnchus mykiss) fishery (Scholz et. al., 1988). These studies indicate that the rainbow trout population may be limited by lack of suitable habitat for spawning and rearing (Scholz et. al., 1988). The initial phase of this project (Phase I, baseline data collection- 1990-91) was directed at the assessment of limiting factors such as quality and quantity of available spawning gravel, identification of passage barriers, and assessment of other limiting factors. Population estimates were conducted using the Seber/LeCren removal/depletion method. After the initial assessment of stream parameters, several streams were selected for habitat/passage improvement projects (Phase II, implementation-1992-96). At the completion of project habitat improvements, the final phase (Phase III, monitoring) began. This phase will assess changes and gauge the success achieved through the improvements. The objective of the project is to correct passage barriers and improve habitat conditions of selected tributaries to Lake Roosevelt for adfluvial rainbow trout that utilize tributary streams for spawning and rearing. Streams with restorable habitats were selected for improvements. Completion of improvement efforts should increase the adfluvial rainbow trout contribution to the resident fishery in Lake Roosevelt. Three co-operating agencies, the Confederated Tribes of the Colville Reservation (CCT), the Spokane Tribe of Indians (STI

  1. Lake Roosevelt Rainbow Trout : Habitat/Passage Improvement Project : Annual Report 1998.

    SciTech Connect

    Jones, Charles D.

    1999-02-01

    Lake Franklin D. Roosevelt was created with the completion of the Grand Coulee Dam in 1942. The lake stretches 151 miles up-stream to the International border between the United States and Canada at the 49th parallel. Increased recreational use, subsistence and sport fishing has resulted in intense interest and possible exploitation of the resources within the lake. Previous studies of the lake and its fishery have been limited. Early studies indicate that natural reproduction within the lake and tributaries are not sufficient to support a rainbow trout (Onchoryhnchus mykiss) fishery (Scholz et. al., 1988). These studies indicate that the rainbow trout population may be limited by lack of suitable habitat for spawning and rearing (Scholz et. al., 1988). The initial phase of this project (Phase I, baseline data collection) was directed at the assessment of limiting factors such as quality and quantity of available spawning gravel, identification of passage barriers, and assessment of other limiting factors. Population estimates were conducted using the Seber/LeCren removal/depletion method. After the initial assessment of stream parameters, several streams were selected for habitat/passage improvement projects (Phase II, implementation). At the completion of project habitat improvements, the final phase (Phase III, monitoring) began. This phase will assess changes and gauge the success achieved through the improvements. The objective of the project is to correct passage barriers and improve habitat conditions of selected tributaries to Lake Roosevelt for adfluvial rainbow trout that utilize tributary streams for spawning and rearing. Streams with restorable habitats were selected for improvements. Completion of improvement efforts should increase the adfluvial rainbow trout contribution to the resident fishery in Lake Roosevelt. Personnel of three co-operating agencies, the Confederated Tribes of the Colville Reservation (CCT), the Spokane Tribe of Indians (STI) and

  2. Breeding for improved potato nutrition: High amylose starch potatoes show promise as fiber source

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Potato starch is composed of approximately 75% amylopectin and 25% amylose. We are interested in breeding for higher amylose content, which would increase the fiber content of potato and decrease glycemic index. In order to make progress in a breeding program, we have developed a high throughput ass...

  3. Genetic improvement of the Pee Dee cotton germplasm collection following seventy years of plant breeding

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Long-term plant breeding programs develop genetic resources that constitute the baseline potential of crop production systems. Over the course of time, through long-term plant breeding efforts, the volume of genetic resources developed is extensive. Knowledge of the performance and genetic propertie...

  4. Notice of release of iceberg, romaine, and leaf lettuce breeding lines with improved disease resistance

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The Agricultural Research Service, U.S. Department of Agriculture announces the release of sixteen breeding lines of lettuce (Lactuca sativa L.). Five (SM13-Il, SM13-I2, SM13-I3, SM13-I4, and SM13-I5) of the six iceberg breeding lines can be used for whole head or salad blend production; the sixth i...

  5. Evaluation of the efficiency of alternative two-tier nucleus breeding systems designed to improve meat sheep in Kenya.

    PubMed

    Gicheha, M G; Kosgey, I S; Bebe, B O; Kahi, A K

    2006-08-01

    A deterministic approach was used to genetically and economically evaluate the efficiency of five two-tier nucleus breeding systems for meat sheep in Kenya. The nucleus breeding systems differed in terms of whether the system was closed or open, in the type of animals that were involved in the movement of genetic superiority and in the number of selection pathways in each system. These systems were compared under four alternative breeding objectives based on monetary genetic gain and profit per ewe. The first objective simulated a situation where the flock size cannot be increased due to non-feed related constraints (FLOCK). The second specifically assumed that the flock size is restricted due to limited amount of feed resources (FEED). The third and fourth objectives assumed that sheep performed only tangible roles (TR) and both tangible and intangible roles (IR) in the production system respectively. Monetary genetic gains were highest for all objectives in an open nucleus system with a certain proportion of commercial-born ewes being introduced in the nucleus while at the same time utilizing young rams from the nucleus to breed sires and dams for the nucleus and commercial sector (ONyre). Utilizing young rams in a closed nucleus system for the dissemination of superior genes resulted in higher annual monetary genetic gain than utilization of old rams. Profit per ewe was significantly higher for FLOCK and IR in ONyre. In a closed system that allowed for downward movement of dams from the nucleus to the commercial sector to breed sires and dams, profit per ewe was highest for FEED and TR. The success of a nucleus breeding system should also focus on the profitability and logistics of establishing it. The implication of these results on the choice of two-tier nucleus breeding systems for the improvement of meat sheep is discussed. PMID:16882091

  6. Lake Roosevelt Rainbow Trout Habitat/Passage Improvement Project, Annual Report 2002-2003.

    SciTech Connect

    Sears, Sheryl

    2004-01-01

    The construction of Chief Joseph and Grand Coulee Dams completely and irrevocably blocked anadromous fish migrations to the Upper Columbia River. Historically this area hosted vast numbers of salmon returning to their natal waters to reproduce and die. For the native peoples of the region, salmon and steelhead were a principle food source, providing physical nourishment and spiritual sustenance, and contributing to the religious practices and the cultural basis of tribal communities. The decaying remains of spawned-out salmon carcasses contributed untold amounts of nutrients into the aquatic, aerial, and terrestrial ecosystems of tributary habitats in the upper basin. Near the present site of Kettle Falls, Washington, the second largest Indian fishery in the state existed for thousands of years. Returning salmon were caught in nets and baskets or speared on their migration to the headwater of the Columbia River in British Columbia. Catch estimates at Kettle Falls range from 600,000 in 1940 to two (2) million around the turn of the century (UCUT, Report No.2). The loss of anadromous fish limited the opportunities for fisheries management and enhancement exclusively to those actions addressed to resident fish. The Lake Roosevelt Rainbow Trout Habitat/Passage Improvement Project is a mitigation project intended to enhance resident fish populations and to partially mitigate for anadromous fish losses caused by hydropower system impacts. This substitution of resident fish for anadromous fish losses is considered in-place and out-of-kind mitigation. Upstream migration and passage barriers limit the amount of spawning and rearing habitat that might otherwise be utilized by rainbow trout. The results of even limited stream surveys and habitat inventories indicated that a potential for increased natural production exists. However, the lack of any comprehensive enhancement measures prompted the Upper Columbia United Tribes Fisheries Center (UCUT), Colville Confederated

  7. Lake Roosevelt Rainbow Trout Habitat/Passage Improvement Project, Annual Report 2001-2002.

    SciTech Connect

    Sears, Sheryl

    2003-01-01

    The construction of Chief Joseph and Grand Coulee Dams completely and irrevocably blocked anadromous fish migrations to the Upper Columbia River. Historically this area hosted vast numbers of salmon returning to their natal waters to reproduce and die. For the native peoples of the region, salmon and steelhead were a principle food source, providing physical nourishment and spiritual sustenance, and contributing to the religious practices and the cultural basis of tribal communities. The decaying remains of spawned-out salmon carcasses contributed untold amounts of nutrients into the aquatic, aerial, and terrestrial ecosystems of tributary habitats in the upper basin. Near the present site of Kettle Falls, Washington, the second largest Indian fishery in the state existed for thousands of years. Returning salmon were caught in nets and baskets or speared on their migration to the headwater of the Columbia River in British Columbia. Catch estimates at Kettle Falls range from 600,000 in 1940 to two (2) million around the turn of the century (UCUT, Report No.2). The loss of anadromous fish limited the opportunities for fisheries management and enhancement exclusively to those actions addressed to resident fish. The Lake Roosevelt Rainbow Trout Habitat/Passage Improvement Project is a mitigation project intended to enhance resident fish populations and to partially mitigate for anadromous fish losses caused by hydropower system impacts. This substitution of resident fish for anadromous fish losses is considered in-place and out-of-kind mitigation. Upstream migration and passage barriers limit the amount of spawning and rearing habitat that might otherwise be utilized by rainbow trout. The results of even limited stream surveys and habitat inventories indicated that a potential for increased natural production exists. However, the lack of any comprehensive enhancement measures prompted the Upper Columbia United Tribes Fisheries Center (UCUT), Colville Confederated

  8. Can non-breeding be a cost of breeding dispersal?

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Danchin, E.; Cam, E.

    2002-01-01

    Breeding habitat selection and dispersal are crucial processes that affect many components of fitness. Breeding dispersal entails costs, one of which has been neglected: dispersing animals may miss breeding opportunities because breeding dispersal requires finding a new nesting site and mate, two time- and energy-consuming activities. Dispersers are expected to be prone to non-breeding. We used the kittiwake (Rissa tridactyla) to test whether breeding dispersal influences breeding probability. Breeding probability was associated with dispersal, in that both were negatively influenced by private information (previous individual reproductive success) and public information (average reproductive success of conspecifics) about patch quality. Furthermore, the probability of skipping breeding was 1.7 times higher in birds that settled in a new patch relative to those that remained on the same patch. Finally, non-breeders that resumed breeding were 4.4 times more likely to disperse than birds that bred in successive years. Although private information may influence breeding probability directly, the link between breeding probability and public information may be indirect, through the influence of public information on breeding dispersal, non-breeding thus being a cost of dispersal. These results support the hypothesis that dispersal may result in not being able to breed. More generally, non-breeding (which can be interpreted as an extreme form of breeding failure) may reveal costs of various previous activities. Because monitoring the non-breeding portion of a population is difficult, non-breeders have been neglected in many studies of reproduction trade-offs.

  9. Natural Propagation and Habitat Improvement Idaho: Lolo Creek and Upper Lochsa, Clearwater National Forest.

    SciTech Connect

    Espinosa, F.A. Jr.; Lee, Kristine M.

    1991-01-01

    In 1983, the Clearwater National Forest and the Bonneville Power Administration (BPA) entered into a contractual agreement to improve anadromous fish habitat in selected tributaries of the Clearwater River Basin. This agreement was drawn under the auspices of the Northwest Power Act of 1980 and the Columbia River basin Fish and Wildlife Program (section 700). The Program was completed in 1990 and this document constitutes the Final Report'' that details all project activities, costs, accomplishments, and responses. The overall goal of the Program was to enhance spawning, rearing, and riparian habitats of Lolo Creek and major tributaries of the Lochsa River so that their production systems could reach full capability and help speed the recovery of salmon and steelhead within the basin.

  10. Habitat Suitability Index Models: Wood Duck

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Sousa, Patrick J.; Farmer, Adrian H.

    1983-01-01

    A review and synthesis of existing information were used to develop models for breeding and wintering habitats for the wood duck (Aix sponsa). The models are scaled to produce indices of habitat suitability between 0 (unsuitable habitat) and 1 (optimally suitable habitat). Habitat suitability indices are designed for use with Habitat Evaluation Procedures previously developed by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.

  11. Possibility of tree selection and breeding for genetic improvement of wood properties of Gmelina arborea

    SciTech Connect

    Akachuku, A.E.

    1984-06-01

    Wood samples of Gmelina arborea were collected from Nigerian plantations. The wood density was measured with an X-ray densitometer. Fiber length was measured with a modified map measurer. Fiber proportion was determined with a modification of Ladell's (1959) randomized dot technique. Considerable between-tree differences were observed in wood density, fiber length, fiber proportion, and sizes of trees of the same age, planted at the same spacing within the same environment. The magnitude of within-tree variations in these wood properties was different in trees within the same plot. Some individual trees combined comparatively high density, fiber length, and fiber proportion with fast growth rate and uniform wood. There was sufficient phenotypic variation to encourage genetic improvement of the wood properties and growth rate by selecting and breeding trees with higher values of these traits. Tree selection should be based on a preliminary screening for tree form and volume growth followed by a second selection for the desired wood properties.

  12. Molecular physiology and breeding at the crossroads of cold hardiness improvement.

    PubMed

    Castonguay, Yves; Dubé, Marie-Pier; Cloutier, Jean; Bertrand, Annick; Michaud, Réal; Laberge, Serge

    2013-01-01

    Alfalfa (Medicago sativa L.) is a major forage legume grown extensively worldwide with important agronomic and environmental attributes. Insufficient cold hardiness is a major impediment to its reliable production in northern climates. Improvement of freezing tolerance using conventional breeding approaches is slowed by the quantitative nature of inheritance and strong interactions with the environment. The development of gene-based markers would facilitate the identification of genotypes with superior stress tolerance. Successive cycles of recurrent selection were applied using an indoor screening method to develop populations with significantly higher tolerance to freezing (TF). Bulk segregant analysis of heterogeneous TF populations identified DNA variations that are progressively enriched in frequency in response to selection. Polymorphisms resulting from intragenic variations within a dehydrin gene were identified and could potentially lead to the development of robust selection tools. Our results illustrate the benefits of feedback interactions between germplasm development programs and molecular physiology for a deeper understanding of the molecular and genetic bases of cold hardiness. PMID:22452626

  13. Improving predictive mapping of deep-water habitats: Considering multiple model outputs and ensemble techniques

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Robert, Katleen; Jones, Daniel O. B.; Roberts, J. Murray; Huvenne, Veerle A. I.

    2016-07-01

    In the deep sea, biological data are often sparse; hence models capturing relationships between observed fauna and environmental variables (acquired via acoustic mapping techniques) are often used to produce full coverage species assemblage maps. Many statistical modelling techniques are being developed, but there remains a need to determine the most appropriate mapping techniques. Predictive habitat modelling approaches (redundancy analysis, maximum entropy and random forest) were applied to a heterogeneous section of seabed on Rockall Bank, NE Atlantic, for which landscape indices describing the spatial arrangement of habitat patches were calculated. The predictive maps were based on remotely operated vehicle (ROV) imagery transects high-resolution autonomous underwater vehicle (AUV) sidescan backscatter maps. Area under the curve (AUC) and accuracy indicated similar performances for the three models tested, but performance varied by species assemblage, with the transitional species assemblage showing the weakest predictive performances. Spatial predictions of habitat suitability differed between statistical approaches, but niche similarity metrics showed redundancy analysis and random forest predictions to be most similar. As one statistical technique could not be found to outperform the others when all assemblages were considered, ensemble mapping techniques, where the outputs of many models are combined, were applied. They showed higher accuracy than any single model. Different statistical approaches for predictive habitat modelling possess varied strengths and weaknesses and by examining the outputs of a range of modelling techniques and their differences, more robust predictions, with better described variation and areas of uncertainties, can be achieved. As improvements to prediction outputs can be achieved without additional costly data collection, ensemble mapping approaches have clear value for spatial management.

  14. Breeding Horticultural Plants

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Plant breeding involves selection of plants with combinations of improved traits that are inherited in a predictable manner. Collecting, understanding, and incorporating genetic variation into a horticultural breeding program are critical to success. Clearly defined goals help plant breeders choose ...

  15. Annual Progress Report Fish Research Project Oregon : Project title, Evaluation of Habitat Improvements -- John Day River.

    SciTech Connect

    Olsen, Erik A.

    1984-01-01

    This report summarizes data collected in 1983 to evaluate habitat improvements in Deer, Camp, and Clear creeks, tributaries of the John Day River. The studies are designed to evaluate changes in abundance of spring chinook and summer steelhead due to habitat improvement projects and to contrast fishery benefits with costs of construction and maintenance of each project. Structure types being evaluated are: (1) log weirs, rock weirs, log deflectors, and in stream boulders in Deer Creek; (2) log weirs in Camp Creek; and (3) log weir-boulder combinations and introduced spawning gravel in Clear Creek. Abundance of juvenile steelhead ranged from 16% to 119% higher in the improved (treatment) area than in the unimproved (control) area of Deer Creek. However, abundance of steelhead in Camp Creek was not significantly different between treatment and control areas. Chinook and steelhead abundance in Clear Creek was 50% and 25% lower, respectively in 1983, than the mean abundance estimated in three previous years. The age structure of steelhead was similar between treatment and control areas in Deer and Clear creeks. The treatment area in Camp Creek, however, had a higher percentage of age 2 and older steelhead than the control. Steelhead redd counts in Camp Creek were 36% lower in 1983 than the previous five year average. Steelhead redd counts in Deer Creek were not made in 1983 because of high streamflows. Chinook redds counted in Clear Creek were 64% lower than the five year average. Surface area, volume, cover, and spawning gravel were the same or higher than the corresponding control in each stream except in Deer Creek where there was less available cover and spawning gravel in sections with rock weirs and in those with log deflectors, respectively. Pool:riffle ratios ranged from 57:43 in sections in upper Clear Creek with log weirs to 9:91 in sections in Deer Creek with rock weirs. Smolt production following habitat improvements is estimated for each stream

  16. Hydrologic modification to improve habitat in riverine lakes: Management objectives, experimental approach, and initial conditions

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Johnson, Barry L.; Barko, John W.; Gerasimov, Yuri; James, William F.; Litvinov, Alexander; Naimo, Teresa J.; Wiener, James G.; Gaugush, Robert F.; Rogala, James T.; Rogers, Sara J.

    1996-01-01

    The Finger Lakes habitat-rehabilitation project is intended to improve physical and chemical conditions for fish in six connected back water lakes in Navigation Pool 5 of the upper Missouri River. The primary management objective is to improve water temperature, dissolved oxygen concentration and current velocity during winter for bluegills, Lepomis macrochirus, and black crappies, Pomoxis nigromaculatus, two of the primary sport fishes in the lakes. The lakes will be hydrologically altered by Installing culverts to Introduce controlled flows of oxygenated water into four lakes, and an existing unregulated culvert on a fifth lake will be equipped with a control gate to regulate inflow. These habitat modifications constitute a manipulative field experiment that will compare pre-project (1991 to summer 1993) and post-project (fall 1993 to 1996) conditions in the lakes, including hydrology, chemistry, rooted vegetation, and fish and macroinvertebrate communities. Initial data indicate that the Finger Lakes differ in water chemistry, hydrology, and macrophyte abundance. Macroinvertebrate communities also differed among lakes: species diversity was highest in lakes with dense aquatic macrophytes. The system seems to support a single fish community, although some species concentrated in individual lakes at different times. The introduction of similar flows into five of the lakes will probably reduce the existing physical and chemical differences among lakes. However, our ability to predict the effects of hydrologic modification on fish populations is limited by uncertainties concerning both the interactions of temperature, oxygen and current in winter and the biological responses of primary and secondary producers. Results from this study should provide guidance for similar habitat-rehabilitation projects in large rivers.

  17. Intragenic crop improvement: combining the benefits of traditional breeding and genetic engineering.

    PubMed

    Rommens, Caius M

    2007-05-30

    New crop varieties are developed by applying traditional breeding methods that rely on random genome modifications. These varieties combine multiple traits that support farm efficiency and acceptable yields but also contain genes associated with the production of toxins, allergens, and/or antinutritional compounds that were not considered during the selection process. Furthermore, existing cultivars frequently lack the functional genes required for specific sensory traits and the formation of health-promoting antioxidants. One new method efficiently addresses some of these issues by either silencing undesirable genes or enhancing the expression of genes that are linked to dormant beneficial traits. Rather than incorporating foreign DNA into the plant's genome, these methods transform crops with plant-derived transfer (P-) DNAs that consist of only native genetic elements. The genetic modification can be characterized molecularly so that any inadvertent transfer of undesirable DNA, as may be the case with traditional methods, is excluded. A recently developed intragenic potato plant is silenced for the polyphenol oxidase, dikinase R1, and phosphorylase-L genes in a tuber-specific manner. French fries derived from these tubers lack discolorations, display an enhanced potato flavor, and produce greatly reduced amounts of the suspected carcinogen acrylamide. It is argued that intragenic modification is unlikely to trigger phenotypic, biochemical, or physiological variation that is new to the species. Similarly, the targeted traits are similar to those that breeders select for and often have a history of domestication and reduced fitness. For these reasons, an updated regulatory system is proposed whereby intragenic crops are considered as low risk and should be cleared for commercial release in a timely and cost-effective manner. By using modern techniques to modify the same genetic material that is used by breeders, intragenic approaches may be perceived as an

  18. Marsh birds and the North American Breeding Bird Survey: judging the value of a landscape level survey for habitat specialist species with low detection rates

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Sauer, J.R.

    1999-01-01

    The North American Breeding Bird Survey was started in 1966, and provides information on population change for >400 species of birds. it covers the continental United States, Canada, and Alaska, and is conducted once each year, in June, by volunteer observers. A 39.4 kIn roadside survey route is driven starting 30 min before sunrise, and a 3 min point count is conducted at each of 50 stops spaced every 0.8 kIn. Existing analyses of the data are internet-based (http://www.mbr-pwrc.usgs.govlbbslbbs.html), and include maps of relative abundance, estimates of population change including trends (%/yr), composite annual indices (pattern in time), and maps of population trend (pattern in space). At least 36 species of marsh birds are encountered on the BBS, and the survey provides estimates with greatly varying levels of efficiency for the species. It is often difficult to understand how well the BBS surveys a species. Often, efficiency is judged by estimating trend and its variance for a species, then by calculating power and needed samples to detect a prespecified trend over some time period (e.g., a 2%/yr trend over 31 yr). Unfortunately, this approach is not always valid, as estimated trends and variances can be of little use if the population is poorly sampled. Lurking concerns with BBS data include (1) incomplete coverage of species range; (2) undersampling of habitats; and (3) low and variable visibility of birds during point counts. It is difficult to evaluate these concerns, because known populations do not exist for comparison with counts, and detection rates are time-consuming and costly to estimate. I evaluated the efficiency of the BBS for selected rails (Rallidae) and snipes (Scolopacidae), presenting estimates of population trend over 1966-1996 (T), power to detect 2%/yr trend over 31 yr, needed samples to achieve power of 0.75 with alpha= 0.1, number of survey routes with data for the species (N), average abundance on survey routes (RA), and maps of

  19. Improved charge breeding efficiency of light ions with an electron cyclotron resonance ion source

    SciTech Connect

    Vondrasek, R.; Kutsaev, Sergey; Delahaye, P.; Maunoury, L.

    2012-11-15

    The Californium Rare Isotope Breeder Upgrade is a new radioactive beam facility for the Argonne Tandem Linac Accelerator System (ATLAS). The facility utilizes a {sup 252}Cf fission source coupled with an electron cyclotron resonance ion source to provide radioactive beam species for the ATLAS experimental program. The californium fission fragment distribution provides nuclei in the mid-mass range which are difficult to extract from production targets using the isotope separation on line technique and are not well populated by low-energy fission of uranium. To date the charge breeding program has focused on optimizing these mid-mass beams, achieving high charge breeding efficiencies of both gaseous and solid species including 14.7% for the radioactive species {sup 143}Ba{sup 27+}. In an effort to better understand the charge breeding mechanism, we have recently focused on the low-mass species sodium and potassium which up to present have been difficult to charge breed efficiently. Unprecedented charge breeding efficiencies of 10.1% for {sup 23}Na{sup 7+} and 17.9% for {sup 39}K{sup 10+} were obtained injecting stable Na{sup +} and K{sup +} beams from a surface ionization source.

  20. Improved charge breeding efficiency of light ions with an electron cyclotron resonance ion source.

    PubMed

    Vondrasek, R; Delahaye, P; Kutsaev, Sergey; Maunoury, L

    2012-11-01

    The Californium Rare Isotope Breeder Upgrade is a new radioactive beam facility for the Argonne Tandem Linac Accelerator System (ATLAS). The facility utilizes a (252)Cf fission source coupled with an electron cyclotron resonance ion source to provide radioactive beam species for the ATLAS experimental program. The californium fission fragment distribution provides nuclei in the mid-mass range which are difficult to extract from production targets using the isotope separation on line technique and are not well populated by low-energy fission of uranium. To date the charge breeding program has focused on optimizing these mid-mass beams, achieving high charge breeding efficiencies of both gaseous and solid species including 14.7% for the radioactive species (143)Ba(27+). In an effort to better understand the charge breeding mechanism, we have recently focused on the low-mass species sodium and potassium which up to present have been difficult to charge breed efficiently. Unprecedented charge breeding efficiencies of 10.1% for (23)Na(7+) and 17.9% for (39)K(10+) were obtained injecting stable Na(+) and K(+) beams from a surface ionization source. PMID:23206054

  1. Long-term reductions in anthropogenic nutrients link to improvements in Chesapeake Bay habitat

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Ruhl, H.A.; Rybicki, N.B.

    2010-01-01

    Great effort continues to focus on ecosystem restoration and reduction of nutrient inputs thought to be responsible, in part, for declines in estuary habitats worldwide. The ability of environmental policy to address restoration is limited, in part, by uncertainty in the relationships between costly restoration and benefits. Here, we present results from an 18-y field investigation (1990-2007) of submerged aquatic vegetation (SAV) community dynamics and water quality in the Potomac River, a major tributary of the Chesapeake Bay. River and anthropogenic discharges lower water clarity by introducing nutrients that stimulate phytoplankton and epiphyte growth as well as suspended sediments. Efforts to restore the Chesapeake Bay are often viewed as failing. Overall nutrient reduction and SAV restoration goals have not been met. In the Potomac River, however, reduced in situ nutrients, wastewater-treatment effluent nitrogen, and total suspended solids were significantly correlated to increased SAV abundance and diversity. Species composition and relative abundance also correlated with nutrient and water-quality conditions, indicating declining fitness of exotic species relative to native species during restoration. Our results suggest that environmental policies that reduce anthropogenic nutrient inputs do result in improved habitat quality, with increased diversity and native species abundances. The results also help elucidate why SAV cover has improved only in some areas of the Chesapeake Bay.

  2. Long-term reductions in anthropogenic nutrients link to improvements in Chesapeake Bay habitat.

    PubMed

    Ruhl, Henry A; Rybicki, Nancy B

    2010-09-21

    Great effort continues to focus on ecosystem restoration and reduction of nutrient inputs thought to be responsible, in part, for declines in estuary habitats worldwide. The ability of environmental policy to address restoration is limited, in part, by uncertainty in the relationships between costly restoration and benefits. Here, we present results from an 18-y field investigation (1990-2007) of submerged aquatic vegetation (SAV) community dynamics and water quality in the Potomac River, a major tributary of the Chesapeake Bay. River and anthropogenic discharges lower water clarity by introducing nutrients that stimulate phytoplankton and epiphyte growth as well as suspended sediments. Efforts to restore the Chesapeake Bay are often viewed as failing. Overall nutrient reduction and SAV restoration goals have not been met. In the Potomac River, however, reduced in situ nutrients, wastewater-treatment effluent nitrogen, and total suspended solids were significantly correlated to increased SAV abundance and diversity. Species composition and relative abundance also correlated with nutrient and water-quality conditions, indicating declining fitness of exotic species relative to native species during restoration. Our results suggest that environmental policies that reduce anthropogenic nutrient inputs do result in improved habitat quality, with increased diversity and native species abundances. The results also help elucidate why SAV cover has improved only in some areas of the Chesapeake Bay. PMID:20823243

  3. Combining scales in habitat models to improve conservation planning in an endangered vulture

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mateo-Tomás, Patricia; Olea, Pedro P.

    2009-07-01

    Predictive modelling of species' distributions has been successfully applied in conservation ecology, but effective conservation requires predictive and accurate models. The combination of different scales to build habitat models might improve their predictive ability and hence their usefulness for conservation, but this approach has rarely been evaluated. We developed habitat-occupancy models combining scales from nest-site to landscape for a key population at the northwestern edge of the distribution of the globally endangered Egyptian vulture ( Neophron percnopterus). We used generalised linear models (GLM) and an information-theoretic approach to identify the best combination of scales and resolutions for explaining occurrence. Those models that combined nest-site and landscape scales improved the predictive ability compared with the scale-specific ones. The best combined model had a very high predictive ability when used against an independent dataset (92% correct classifications). Egyptian vultures preferred to nest in caves with vegetation at the entrance that were situated at the base of long cliffs, provided that these cliffs are embedded within low-lying, heterogeneous areas with little topographic irregularity and with little human disturbance. The density of sheep around the nest positively influenced Egyptian vulture presence. Conservation of the studied population should focus on minimising human disturbance and on promoting sustainable development through conservation of traditional pastoralism. Our findings highlight the importance of developing region-specific multiscale models in order to design effective conservation strategies. The approach described here may be applied similarly in other populations and species.

  4. Physiological breeding.

    PubMed

    Reynolds, Matthew; Langridge, Peter

    2016-06-01

    Physiological breeding crosses parents with different complex but complementary traits to achieve cumulative gene action for yield, while selecting progeny using remote sensing, possibly in combination with genomic selection. Physiological approaches have already demonstrated significant genetic gains in Australia and several developing countries of the International Wheat Improvement Network. The techniques involved (see Graphical Abstract) also provide platforms for research and refinement of breeding methodologies. Recent examples of these include screening genetic resources for novel expression of Calvin cycle enzymes, identification of common genetic bases for heat and drought adaptation, and genetic dissection of trade-offs among yield components. Such information, combined with results from physiological crosses designed to test novel trait combinations, lead to more precise breeding strategies, and feed models of genotype-by-environment interaction to help build new plant types and experimental environments for future climates. PMID:27161822

  5. Variation in Anthocyanin Content of Wild Black Raspberry for Breeding Improved Cultivars

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Because of its intense anthocyanin pigments, black raspberry (Rubus occidentalis L.) has a long history of use as a natural colorant and dye. Recent studies showing black raspberries to be a rich source of anthocyanins and other dietary phytochemicals has led to renewed interest in breeding new, bet...

  6. Field Review of Fish Habitat Improvement Projects in the Grande Ronde and John Day River Basins of Eastern Oregon.

    SciTech Connect

    Beschta, Robert L.; Platts, William S.; Kauffman, J. Boone

    1991-10-01

    The restoration of vegetation adapted to riparian environments and the natural succession of riparian plant communities is necessary to recreate sustainable salmonid habitat and should be the focal point for fish habitat improvement programs. In mid-August of 1991, a field review of 16 Salmon habitat improvement sites in the Grande Ronde and John Day River Basins in Eastern Oregon was undertaken. The review team visited various types of fish habitat improvements associated with a wide range of reach types, geology, channel gradients, stream sizes, and vegetation communities. Enhancement objectives, limiting factors, landuse history, and other factors were discussed at each site. This information, in conjunction with the reviewer's field inspection of portions of a particular habitat improvement project, provided the basis for the following report. This report that follows is divided into four sections: (1) Recommendations, (2) Objectives, (3) Discussion and Conclusions, and (4) Site Comments. The first section represents a synthesis of major recommendations that were developed during this review. The remaining sections provide more detailed information and comments related to specific aspects of the field review.

  7. Applications of genetic data to improve management and conservation of river fishes and their habitats

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Scribner, Kim T; Lowe, Winsor H.; Landguth, Erin L.; Luikart, Gordon; Infante, Dana M.; Whelan, Gary; Muhlfeld, Clint C.

    2015-01-01

    Environmental variation and landscape features affect ecological processes in fluvial systems; however, assessing effects at management-relevant temporal and spatial scales is challenging. Genetic data can be used with landscape models and traditional ecological assessment data to identify biodiversity hotspots, predict ecosystem responses to anthropogenic effects, and detect impairments to underlying processes. We show that by combining taxonomic, demographic, and genetic data of species in complex riverscapes, managers can better understand the spatial and temporal scales over which environmental processes and disturbance influence biodiversity. We describe how population genetic models using empirical or simulated genetic data quantify effects of environmental processes affecting species diversity and distribution. Our summary shows that aquatic assessment initiatives that use standardized data sets to direct management actions can benefit from integration of genetic data to improve the predictability of disturbance–response relationships of river fishes and their habitats over a broad range of spatial and temporal scales.

  8. Hyperspectral analysis of columbia spotted frog habitat

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Shive, J.P.; Pilliod, D.S.; Peterson, C.R.

    2010-01-01

    Wildlife managers increasingly are using remotely sensed imagery to improve habitat delineations and sampling strategies. Advances in remote sensing technology, such as hyperspectral imagery, provide more information than previously was available with multispectral sensors. We evaluated accuracy of high-resolution hyperspectral image classifications to identify wetlands and wetland habitat features important for Columbia spotted frogs (Rana luteiventris) and compared the results to multispectral image classification and United States Geological Survey topographic maps. The study area spanned 3 lake basins in the Salmon River Mountains, Idaho, USA. Hyperspectral data were collected with an airborne sensor on 30 June 2002 and on 8 July 2006. A 12-year comprehensive ground survey of the study area for Columbia spotted frog reproduction served as validation for image classifications. Hyperspectral image classification accuracy of wetlands was high, with a producer's accuracy of 96 (44 wetlands) correctly classified with the 2002 data and 89 (41 wetlands) correctly classified with the 2006 data. We applied habitat-based rules to delineate breeding habitat from other wetlands, and successfully predicted 74 (14 wetlands) of known breeding wetlands for the Columbia spotted frog. Emergent sedge microhabitat classification showed promise for directly predicting Columbia spotted frog egg mass locations within a wetland by correctly identifying 72 (23 of 32) of known locations. Our study indicates hyperspectral imagery can be an effective tool for mapping spotted frog breeding habitat in the selected mountain basins. We conclude that this technique has potential for improving site selection for inventory and monitoring programs conducted across similar wetland habitat and can be a useful tool for delineating wildlife habitats. ?? 2010 The Wildlife Society.

  9. A Review of Microsatellite Markers and Their Applications in Rice Breeding Programs to Improve Blast Disease Resistance

    PubMed Central

    Miah, Gous; Rafii, Mohd Y.; Ismail, Mohd R.; Puteh, Adam B.; Rahim, Harun A.; Islam, Kh. Nurul; Latif, Mohammad Abdul

    2013-01-01

    Over the last few decades, the use of molecular markers has played an increasing role in rice breeding and genetics. Of the different types of molecular markers, microsatellites have been utilized most extensively, because they can be readily amplified by PCR and the large amount of allelic variation at each locus. Microsatellites are also known as simple sequence repeats (SSR), and they are typically composed of 1–6 nucleotide repeats. These markers are abundant, distributed throughout the genome and are highly polymorphic compared with other genetic markers, as well as being species-specific and co-dominant. For these reasons, they have become increasingly important genetic markers in rice breeding programs. The evolution of new biotypes of pests and diseases as well as the pressures of climate change pose serious challenges to rice breeders, who would like to increase rice production by introducing resistance to multiple biotic and abiotic stresses. Recent advances in rice genomics have now made it possible to identify and map a number of genes through linkage to existing DNA markers. Among the more noteworthy examples of genes that have been tightly linked to molecular markers in rice are those that confer resistance or tolerance to blast. Therefore, in combination with conventional breeding approaches, marker-assisted selection (MAS) can be used to monitor the presence or lack of these genes in breeding populations. For example, marker-assisted backcross breeding has been used to integrate important genes with significant biological effects into a number of commonly grown rice varieties. The use of cost-effective, finely mapped microsatellite markers and MAS strategies should provide opportunities for breeders to develop high-yield, blast resistance rice cultivars. The aim of this review is to summarize the current knowledge concerning the linkage of microsatellite markers to rice blast resistance genes, as well as to explore the use of MAS in rice breeding

  10. Glucosinolate metabolism, functionality and breeding for the improvement of Brassicaceae vegetables

    PubMed Central

    Ishida, Masahiko; Hara, Masakazu; Fukino, Nobuko; Kakizaki, Tomohiro; Morimitsu, Yasujiro

    2014-01-01

    Unique secondary metabolites, glucosinolates (S-glucopyranosyl thiohydroximates), are naturally occurring S-linked glucosides found mainly in Brassicaceae plants. They are enzymatically hydrolyzed to produce sulfate ions, D-glucose, and characteristic degradation products such as isothiocyanates. The functions of glucosinolates in the plants remain unclear, but isothiocyanates possessing a pungent or irritating taste and odor might be associated with plant defense from microbes. Isothiocyanates have been studied extensively in experimental in vitro and in vivo carcinogenesis models for their cancer chemopreventive properties. The beneficial isothiocyanates, glucosinolates that are functional for supporting human health, have received attention from many scientists studying plant breeding, plant physiology, plant genetics, and food functionality. This review presents a summary of recent topics related with glucosinolates in the Brassica family, along with a summary of the chemicals, metabolism, and genes of glucosinolates in Brassicaceae. The bioavailabilities of isothiocyanates from certain functional glucosinolates and the importance of breeding will be described with emphasis on glucosinolates. PMID:24987290

  11. Glucosinolate metabolism, functionality and breeding for the improvement of Brassicaceae vegetables.

    PubMed

    Ishida, Masahiko; Hara, Masakazu; Fukino, Nobuko; Kakizaki, Tomohiro; Morimitsu, Yasujiro

    2014-05-01

    Unique secondary metabolites, glucosinolates (S-glucopyranosyl thiohydroximates), are naturally occurring S-linked glucosides found mainly in Brassicaceae plants. They are enzymatically hydrolyzed to produce sulfate ions, D-glucose, and characteristic degradation products such as isothiocyanates. The functions of glucosinolates in the plants remain unclear, but isothiocyanates possessing a pungent or irritating taste and odor might be associated with plant defense from microbes. Isothiocyanates have been studied extensively in experimental in vitro and in vivo carcinogenesis models for their cancer chemopreventive properties. The beneficial isothiocyanates, glucosinolates that are functional for supporting human health, have received attention from many scientists studying plant breeding, plant physiology, plant genetics, and food functionality. This review presents a summary of recent topics related with glucosinolates in the Brassica family, along with a summary of the chemicals, metabolism, and genes of glucosinolates in Brassicaceae. The bioavailabilities of isothiocyanates from certain functional glucosinolates and the importance of breeding will be described with emphasis on glucosinolates. PMID:24987290

  12. New Breed of Mice May Improve Accuracy for Preclinical Testing of Cancer Drugs | Poster

    Cancer.gov

    A new breed of lab animals, dubbed “glowing head mice,” may do a better job than conventional mice in predicting the success of experimental cancer drugs—while also helping to meet an urgent need for more realistic preclinical animal models. The mice were developed to tolerate often-used light-emitting molecules, such as luciferase from fireflies and green fluorescent protein (GFP) from jellyfish. These “optical reporters” are useful for monitoring the effect of experimental therapies in live animals over time because they emit an immediate and easily detected light signal showing whether a tumor inside the animal’s body is shrinking as desired.

  13. Using Sequence Variants in Linkage Disequilibrium with Causative Mutations to Improve Across-Breed Prediction in Dairy Cattle: A Simulation Study.

    PubMed

    van den Berg, Irene; Boichard, Didier; Guldbrandtsen, Bernt; Lund, Mogens S

    2016-01-01

    Sequence data are expected to increase the reliability of genomic prediction by containing causative mutations directly, especially in cases where low linkage disequilibrium between markers and causative mutations limits prediction reliability, such as across-breed prediction in dairy cattle. In practice, the causative mutations are unknown, and prediction with only variants in perfect linkage disequilibrium with the causative mutations is not realistic, leading to a reduced reliability compared to knowing the causative variants. Our objective was to use sequence data to investigate the potential benefits of sequence data for the prediction of genomic relationships, and consequently reliability of genomic breeding values. We used sequence data from five dairy cattle breeds, and a larger number of imputed sequences for two of the five breeds. We focused on the influence of linkage disequilibrium between markers and causative mutations, and assumed that a fraction of the causative mutations was shared across breeds and had the same effect across breeds. By comparing the loss in reliability of different scenarios, varying the distance between markers and causative mutations, using either all genome wide markers from commercial SNP chips, or only the markers closest to the causative mutations, we demonstrate the importance of using only variants very close to the causative mutations, especially for across-breed prediction. Rare variants improved prediction only if they were very close to rare causative mutations, and all causative mutations were rare. Our results show that sequence data can potentially improve genomic prediction, but careful selection of markers is essential. PMID:27317779

  14. Using Sequence Variants in Linkage Disequilibrium with Causative Mutations to Improve Across-Breed Prediction in Dairy Cattle: A Simulation Study

    PubMed Central

    van den Berg, Irene; Boichard, Didier; Guldbrandtsen, Bernt; Lund, Mogens S.

    2016-01-01

    Sequence data are expected to increase the reliability of genomic prediction by containing causative mutations directly, especially in cases where low linkage disequilibrium between markers and causative mutations limits prediction reliability, such as across-breed prediction in dairy cattle. In practice, the causative mutations are unknown, and prediction with only variants in perfect linkage disequilibrium with the causative mutations is not realistic, leading to a reduced reliability compared to knowing the causative variants. Our objective was to use sequence data to investigate the potential benefits of sequence data for the prediction of genomic relationships, and consequently reliability of genomic breeding values. We used sequence data from five dairy cattle breeds, and a larger number of imputed sequences for two of the five breeds. We focused on the influence of linkage disequilibrium between markers and causative mutations, and assumed that a fraction of the causative mutations was shared across breeds and had the same effect across breeds. By comparing the loss in reliability of different scenarios, varying the distance between markers and causative mutations, using either all genome wide markers from commercial SNP chips, or only the markers closest to the causative mutations, we demonstrate the importance of using only variants very close to the causative mutations, especially for across-breed prediction. Rare variants improved prediction only if they were very close to rare causative mutations, and all causative mutations were rare. Our results show that sequence data can potentially improve genomic prediction, but careful selection of markers is essential. PMID:27317779

  15. Advanced Burner Reactor with Breed-and-Burn Thorium Blankets for Improved Economics and Resource Utilization

    SciTech Connect

    Greenspan, Ehud

    2015-11-04

    This study assesses the feasibility of designing Seed and Blanket (S&B) Sodium-cooled Fast Reactor (SFR) to generate a significant fraction of the core power from radial thorium fueled blankets that operate on the Breed-and-Burn (B&B) mode without exceeding the radiation damage constraint of presently verified cladding materials. The S&B core is designed to maximize the fraction of neutrons that radially leak from the seed (or “driver”) into the subcritical blanket and reduce neutron loss via axial leakage. The blanket in the S&B core makes beneficial use of the leaking neutrons for improved economics and resource utilization. A specific objective of this study is to maximize the fraction of core power that can be generated by the blanket without violating the thermal hydraulic and material constraints. Since the blanket fuel requires no reprocessing along with remote fuel fabrication, a larger fraction of power from the blanket will result in a smaller fuel recycling capacity and lower fuel cycle cost per unit of electricity generated. A unique synergism is found between a low conversion ratio (CR) seed and a B&B blanket fueled by thorium. Among several benefits, this synergism enables the very low leakage S&B cores to have small positive coolant voiding reactivity coefficient and large enough negative Doppler coefficient even when using inert matrix fuel for the seed. The benefits of this synergism are maximized when using an annular seed surrounded by an inner and outer thorium blankets. Among the high-performance S&B cores designed to benefit from this unique synergism are: (1) the ultra-long cycle core that features a cycle length of ~7 years; (2) the high-transmutation rate core where the seed fuel features a TRU CR of 0.0. Its TRU transmutation rate is comparable to that of the reference Advanced Burner Reactor (ABR) with CR of 0.5 and the thorium blanket can generate close to 60% of the core power; but requires only one sixth of the reprocessing and

  16. Breeding signature of combining ability improvement revealed by a genomic variation map from recurrent selection population in Brassica napus

    PubMed Central

    Zhao, Xinwang; Li, Bao; Zhang, Ka; Hu, Kaining; Yi, Bin; Wen, Jing; Ma, Chaozhi; Shen, Jinxiong; Fu, Tingdong; Tu, Jinxing

    2016-01-01

    Combining ability is crucial for parent selection in crop hybrid breeding. The present investigation and results had revealed the underlying genetic factors which might contribute in adequate combining ability, further assisting in enhancing heterosis and stability. Here, we conducted a large-scale analysis of genomic variation in order to define genomic regions affecting the combining ability in recurrent selection population of rapeseed. A population of 175 individuals was genotyped with the Brassica60K SNP chip. 525 hybrids were assembled with three different testers and used to evaluate the general combining ability (GCA) in three environments. By detecting the changes of the genomic variation, we identified 376 potential genome regions, spanning 3.03% of rapeseed genome which provided QTL-level resolution on potentially selected variants. More than 96% of these regions were located in the C subgenome, indicating that C subgenome had sustained stronger selection pressure in the breeding program than the A subgenome. In addition, a high level of linkage disequilibrium in rapeseed genome was detected, suggesting that marker-assisted selection for the population improvement might be easily implemented. This study outlines the evidence for high GCA on a genomic level and provided underlying molecular mechanism for recurrent selection improvement in B. napus. PMID:27412721

  17. Breeding signature of combining ability improvement revealed by a genomic variation map from recurrent selection population in Brassica napus.

    PubMed

    Zhao, Xinwang; Li, Bao; Zhang, Ka; Hu, Kaining; Yi, Bin; Wen, Jing; Ma, Chaozhi; Shen, Jinxiong; Fu, Tingdong; Tu, Jinxing

    2016-01-01

    Combining ability is crucial for parent selection in crop hybrid breeding. The present investigation and results had revealed the underlying genetic factors which might contribute in adequate combining ability, further assisting in enhancing heterosis and stability. Here, we conducted a large-scale analysis of genomic variation in order to define genomic regions affecting the combining ability in recurrent selection population of rapeseed. A population of 175 individuals was genotyped with the Brassica60K SNP chip. 525 hybrids were assembled with three different testers and used to evaluate the general combining ability (GCA) in three environments. By detecting the changes of the genomic variation, we identified 376 potential genome regions, spanning 3.03% of rapeseed genome which provided QTL-level resolution on potentially selected variants. More than 96% of these regions were located in the C subgenome, indicating that C subgenome had sustained stronger selection pressure in the breeding program than the A subgenome. In addition, a high level of linkage disequilibrium in rapeseed genome was detected, suggesting that marker-assisted selection for the population improvement might be easily implemented. This study outlines the evidence for high GCA on a genomic level and provided underlying molecular mechanism for recurrent selection improvement in B. napus. PMID:27412721

  18. The critical role of islands for waterbird breeding and foraging habitat in managed ponds of the South Bay Salt Pond Restoration Project, South San Francisco Bay, California

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Ackerman, Joshua T.; Hartman, C. Alex; Herzog, Mark P.; Smith, Lacy M.; Moskal, Stacy M.; De La Cruz, Susan E. W.; Yee, Julie L.; Takekawa, John Y.

    2014-01-01

    The South Bay Salt Pond Restoration Project aims to restore 50–90 percent of former salt evaporation ponds into tidal marsh in South San Francisco Bay, California. However, large numbers of waterbirds use these ponds annually as nesting and foraging habitat. Islands within ponds are particularly important habitat for nesting, foraging, and roosting waterbirds. To maintain current waterbird populations, the South Bay Salt Pond Restoration Project plans to create new islands within former salt ponds in South San Francisco Bay. In a series of studies, we investigated pond and individual island attributes that are most beneficial to nesting, foraging, and roosting waterbirds.

  19. Monitoring Hip and Elbow Dysplasia Achieved Modest Genetic Improvement of 74 Dog Breeds over 40 Years in USA

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Xu; Zhao, Qian; Todhunter, Rory J.; Zhang, Zhiwu

    2013-01-01

    Hip (HD) and Elbow Dysplasia (ED) are two common complex developmental disorders of dogs. In order to decrease their prevalence and severity, the Orthopedic Foundation for Animals (OFA) has a voluntary registry of canine hip and elbow conformation certified by boarded radiologists. However, the voluntarily reports have been severely biased against exposing dogs with problems, especially at beginning period. Fluctuated by additional influential factors such as age, the published raw scores barely showed trends of improvement. In this study, we used multiple-trait mixed model to simultaneously adjust these factors and incorporate pedigree to derive Estimated Breeding Values (EBV). A total of 1,264,422 dogs from 74 breeds were evaluated for EBVs from 760,455 hip scores and 135,409 elbow scores. These EBVs have substantially recovered the reporting bias and the other influences. Clear and steady trends of genetic improvement were observed over the 40 years since 1970. The total genetic improvements were 16.4% and 1.1% of the phenotypic standard deviation for HD and ED, respectively. The incidences of dysplasia were 0.83% and 2.08%, and the heritabilities were estimated as 0.22 and 0.17 for hip and elbow scores, respectively. The genetic correlation between them was 0.12. We conclude that EBV is more effective than reporting raw phenotype. The weak genetic correlation suggested that selection based on hip scores would also slightly improve elbow scores but it is necessary to allocate effort toward improvement of elbow scores alone. PMID:24124555

  20. Monitoring Hip and Elbow Dysplasia achieved modest genetic improvement of 74 dog breeds over 40 years in USA.

    PubMed

    Hou, Yali; Wang, Yachun; Lu, Xuemei; Zhang, Xu; Zhao, Qian; Todhunter, Rory J; Zhang, Zhiwu

    2013-01-01

    Hip (HD) and Elbow Dysplasia (ED) are two common complex developmental disorders of dogs. In order to decrease their prevalence and severity, the Orthopedic Foundation for Animals (OFA) has a voluntary registry of canine hip and elbow conformation certified by boarded radiologists. However, the voluntarily reports have been severely biased against exposing dogs with problems, especially at beginning period. Fluctuated by additional influential factors such as age, the published raw scores barely showed trends of improvement. In this study, we used multiple-trait mixed model to simultaneously adjust these factors and incorporate pedigree to derive Estimated Breeding Values (EBV). A total of 1,264,422 dogs from 74 breeds were evaluated for EBVs from 760,455 hip scores and 135,409 elbow scores. These EBVs have substantially recovered the reporting bias and the other influences. Clear and steady trends of genetic improvement were observed over the 40 years since 1970. The total genetic improvements were 16.4% and 1.1% of the phenotypic standard deviation for HD and ED, respectively. The incidences of dysplasia were 0.83% and 2.08%, and the heritabilities were estimated as 0.22 and 0.17 for hip and elbow scores, respectively. The genetic correlation between them was 0.12. We conclude that EBV is more effective than reporting raw phenotype. The weak genetic correlation suggested that selection based on hip scores would also slightly improve elbow scores but it is necessary to allocate effort toward improvement of elbow scores alone. PMID:24124555

  1. Blackberry breeding and genetics

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Blackberry (Rubus L. subgenus Rubus Watson) improvement has made substantial progress with over 400 cultivars named originating from wild selections to many releases from breeding efforts. Public breeding has been ongoing for over 100 years. The result of these improvements is commercial production ...

  2. Application of remotely sensed multispectral data to automated analysis of marshland vegetation. Inference to the location of breeding habitats of the salt marsh mosquito (Aedes Sollicitans)

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Cibula, W. G.

    1976-01-01

    The techniques used for the automated classification of marshland vegetation and for the color-coded display of remotely acquired data to facilitate the control of mosquito breeding are presented. A multispectral scanner system and its mode of operation are described, and the computer processing techniques are discussed. The procedures for the selection of calibration sites are explained. Three methods for displaying color-coded classification data are presented.

  3. Applied genetics: Speeding the development of improved varieties by developing breeding tools and genetic knowledge

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Geneticists improve the breeders ability to create new, improved varieties by finding genes, making the genes more available to breeders by moving them into improved germplasm, and devising improved selection techniques, whether based on visual trait evaluations or linkage between genes and molecula...

  4. Sustainable urban development and human health: septic tank as a major breeding habitat of mosquito vectors of human diseases in south-eastern Nigeria.

    PubMed

    Nwoke, B E; Nduka, F O; Okereke, O M; Ehighibe, O C

    1993-02-01

    Septic tank mosquitoes in Abia State University Okigwe, south-eastern Nigeria were studied using exit traps between November 1988 and April 1989. The results were revealing and striking. Apart from the common septic tank mosquitoes, Culex p. quinquefasciatus, Cu. cinereus and Aedes aegypti, which have been previously commonly found breeding in ammonia and nitrate-rich waters of latrines and septic tanks, the other species, Cu. horridus, Cu. tigripes and Aedes vittatus, have not been commonly reported as colonizing septic tanks in Nigeria. Three out of these six mosquito species observed are vectors of human diseases: Aedes aegypti and Aedes vittatus are vectors of Yellow fever and Cu. p. quinquefasciatus is a potential vector of Bancroftian filariasis and a world-wide vector of various arboviruses. The fact that these mosquito vectors are able to breed in highly polluted waters of septic tanks during the harsh dry months when most surface water bodies are dry is epidemiologically important. The breeding of these mosquito vectors of human diseases around human dwellings indicates an intense man-vector contact creating a high level risk to the crowded urban population. The public health implications of this urbanization/modernization problem and solutions are discussed. PMID:8508215

  5. Natural Propagation and Habitat Improvement, Volume 2, Idaho, 1985 Annual and Final Reports.

    SciTech Connect

    Hair, Don

    1986-09-01

    The individual reports in this volume have been separately abstracted for inclusion in the data base. The reports describe fish habitat enhancement projects on the Lochsa River, Eldorado and Camas Creeks, and the Clearwater River. (ACR)

  6. Experimental evidence of a link between breeding conditions and the decision to breed or to help in a colonial cooperative bird.

    PubMed Central

    Covas, Rita; Doutrelant, Claire; du Plessis, Morné A.

    2004-01-01

    In many species mature individuals delay independent reproduction and may help others to reproduce. This behaviour is often explained through ecological constraints, although recently attention has also been paid to the variation in habitat quality. If the quality of vacant habitat influences the fitness trade-off between delaying reproduction and breeding independently, individuals should delay reproduction when conditions for breeding are poor. Yet, no study has experimentally manipulated habitat quality or the conditions experienced during the breeding period to test this assertion conclusively. We report results from an experiment conducted on a colonial cooperative bird with no territory constraints on reproduction. We artificially improved breeding conditions in several colonies of sociable weavers, Philetairus socius, through the provision of an easily obtainable and unlimited supply of food. We provide experimental evidence showing that under enhanced conditions some individuals reduce their age at first reproduction, a greater proportion of colony members engage in independent breeding and proportionally fewer birds act as helpers. Hence, these results also provide evidence for a direct influence of reproductive costs on life-history decisions such as age at first reproduction and breeding and helping behaviours. PMID:15255101

  7. Potential for Loss of Breeding Habitat for Imperiled Mountain Yellow-legged Frog ( Rana muscosa) in High Sierra Nevada Mountain Water Bodies due to Reduced Snowpack: Interaction of Climate Change and an Introduced Predator

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lacan, I.; Matthews, K. R.

    2005-12-01

    Year to year variation in snowpack (20-200% average) and summer rain create large fluctuations in the volume of water in ponds and small lakes of the higher elevation (> 3000 m) Sierra Nevada. These water bodies are critical habitat for the imperiled mountain yellow-legged frog, Rana muscosa, which has decreased in abundance by 90% during the past century, due in part to the loss of suitable habitat and introduction of a fish predator (trout, Oncorhynchus spp.). Climate change is predicted to reduce the amount of snowpack, potentially impacting amphibian habitats throughout the Sierra Nevada by further reducing the lake and pond water levels and resulting in drying of small lakes during the summer. Mountain yellow-legged frogs are closely tied to water during all life stages, and are unique in having a three- to four-year tadpole phase. Thus, tadpole survival and future recruitment of adult frogs requires adequate water in lakes and ponds throughout the year, but larger lakes are populated with fish that prey on frogs and tadpoles. Thus, most successful frog breeding occurs in warm, shallow, fishless ponds that undergo wide fluctuations in volume. These water bodies would be most susceptible to the potential climate change effects of reduced snowpack, possibly resulting in lower tadpole survival. This study explores the link between the changes in water availability -- including complete pond drying -- and the abundance and recruitment of mountain yellow-legged frog in Dusy Basin, Kings Canyon National Park, California, USA. We propose using the low-snowpack years (1999, 2002, 2004) as comparative case studies to predict future effects of climate change on aquatic habitat availability and amphibian abundance and survival. To quantify the year to year variation and changes in water volume available to amphibians, we initiated GPS lake mapping in 2002 to quantify water volumes, water surface area, and shoreline length. We tracked these changes by repeated mapping of

  8. Improving ungulate habitat in a region undergoing rapid energy development: Consequences for songbirds and small mammals

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bombaci, Sara Petrita

    Habitat manipulation intended to mitigate the impact of energy development on game animals is well underway in the western U.S. Yet, the consequences of these actions for other species are not well understood. A habitat manipulation experiment was established in the Piceance Basin, a region of Colorado undergoing rapid energy development, to evaluate alternative methods (i.e. chaining, hydro-axe, and roller-chop treatments) for reducing pinyon-juniper woodlands to promote mule deer habitat. I use this experimental design to additionally test the initial effects of these treatments on birds and small mammals, and to evaluate selection of habitat components in treatments by birds and small mammals. I found lower bird species occupancy in all treatment plots compared to control plots; however the strength of this response varied by bird guild. I found a positive relationship between bird species occupancy and percent tree cover and a negative relationship between bird species occupancy and percent grass and forb cover. I found no evidence of differences in small mammal species occupancy or density between controls and treatments. I found a positive relationship between small mammal species occupancy and percent grass and forb cover. Species richness did not significantly differ between control and treatment plots for birds or small mammals. My approach and research findings can be used to inform habitat management and multiple-species conservation objectives in pinyon-juniper and sage-steppe ecosystems undergoing energy development. Specifically, I have identified that recently developed roller-chop and hydro-axe treatments have similar impacts to woodland bird guilds as traditional chaining treatments. I have also identified species that are sensitive to habitat mitigation treatments, and thus should be monitored if woodland reduction continues to be used as a habitat mitigation strategy. Since all bird guilds were positively associated with tree cover, woodland

  9. Breeding productivity of Smith Island black ducks

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Haramis, G.M.; Jorde, D.G.; Olsen, G.H.; Stotts, D.B.; Harrison, M.K.

    2002-01-01

    We investigated the breeding performance of American black ducks (Anas rubripes) on Smith Island, Chesapeake Bay, to improve our understanding of island black duck breeding ecology and to make management recommendations to enhance productivity. During 1995-96, we implanted 56 female black ducks with 20-g radio transmitters and tracked 35 of the individuals through the breeding season to locate nests, determine nest fate, and identify brood habitat. We also increased preseason banding efforts and compared capture characteristics over 12 years with those from the Deal Island Wildlife Management Area, a banding site on the mainland of Tangier Sound. A low rate of nesting (37%), lack of renesting, and poor hatching success (31%) indicated that island salt marsh habitats present a harsh environment for breeding black ducks. Black ducks located 11 of 13 nests (85%) in black needlerush (Juncus roemerianus) marsh where they were vulnerable to flooding from extreme tides and to egg predators. No nests were found on forested tree hammocks, a feature that distinguishes Smith Island from nearby South Marsh and Bloodsworth Islands. Nest predators included red foxes (Vulpes vulpes), herring gulls (Larus argentams), fish crows (Corvus ossifragus), and, potentially, Norway rats (Rattus norvegicus). Unlike mainland red foxes, foxes radio tracked on Smith Island were found to be capable swimmers and effective low marsh predators. We found shoreline meadows of widgeon grass (Ruppia maritima) to be important foraging sites for black ducks and suspected that the virtual absence of fresh water in this high salinity environment (1217+ ppt) to incur some cost in terms of growth and survival of ducklings. Preseason bandings revealed a high proportion of banded adults and a strong positive correlation in age ratios with the Deal Island banding site. This latter finding strongly suggests a negative universal effect of storm tides on nest success for Tangier Sound black ducks. Management to

  10. Multi-scale habitat selection in highly territorial bird species: Exploring the contribution of nest, territory and landscape levels to site choice in breeding rallids (Aves: Rallidae)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jedlikowski, Jan; Chibowski, Piotr; Karasek, Tomasz; Brambilla, Mattia

    2016-05-01

    Habitat selection often involves choices made at different spatial scales, but the underlying mechanisms are still poorly understood, and studies that investigate the relative importance of individual scales are rare. We investigated the effect of three spatial scales (landscape, territory, nest-site) on the occurrence pattern of little crake Zapornia parva and water rail Rallus aquaticus at 74 ponds in the Masurian Lakeland, Poland. Habitat structure, food abundance and water chemical parameters were measured at nests and random points within landscape plots (from 300-m to 50-m radius), territory (14-m) and nest-site plots (3-m). Regression analyses suggested that the most relevant scale was territory level, followed by landscape, and finally by nest-site for both species. Variation partitioning confirmed this pattern for water rail, but also highlighted the importance of nest-site (the level explaining the highest share of unique variation) for little crake. The most important variables determining the occurrence of both species were water body fragmentation (landscape), vegetation density (territory) and water depth (at territory level for little crake, and at nest-site level for water rail). Finally, for both species multi-scale models including factors from different levels were more parsimonious than single-scale ones, i.e. habitat selection was likely a multi-scale process. The importance of particular spatial scales seemed more related to life-history traits than to the extent of the scales considered. In the case of our study species, the territory level was highly important likely because both rallids have to obtain all the resources they need (nest site, food and mates) in relatively small areas, the multi-purpose territories they defend.

  11. Benthic habitat mapping: A review of progress towards improved understanding of the spatial ecology of the seafloor using acoustic techniques

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Brown, Craig J.; Smith, Stephen J.; Lawton, Peter; Anderson, John T.

    2011-05-01

    This review examines the various strategies and methods used to produce benthic habitat maps using acoustic remote sensing techniques, coupled with in situ sampling. The applications of three acoustic survey techniques are examined in detail: single-beam acoustic ground discrimination systems, sidescan sonar systems, and multi-beam echo sounders. Over the past decade we have witnessed the nascence of the field of benthic habitat mapping and, on the evidence of the literature reviewed in this paper, have seen a rapid evolution in the level of sophistication in our ability to image and thus map seafloor habitats. As acoustic survey tools have become ever more complex, new methods have been tested to segment, classify and combine these data with biological ground truth sample data. Although the specific methods used to derive habitat maps vary considerably, the review indicates that studies can generally be categorized into one of three over-arching strategies; 1) Abiotic surrogate mapping; 2) Assemble first, predict later (unsupervised classification); 3) Predict first, assemble later (supervised classification). Whilst there is still no widely accepted agreement on the best way to produce benthic habitat maps, all three strategies provide valuable map resources to support management objectives. Whilst there is still considerable work to be done before we can answer many of the outstanding technological, methodological, ecological and theoretical questions that have been raised here, the review concludes that the advent of spatial ecological studies founded on high-resolution environmental data sets will undoubtedly help us to examine patterns in community and species distributions. This is a vital first step in unraveling ecological complexities and thus providing improved spatial information for management of marine systems.

  12. Estimating habitat carrying capacity for migrating and wintering waterfowl: Considerations, pitfalls and improvements

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Williams, Christopher; Dugger, Bruce D.; Brasher, Michael G.; Coluccy, John M.; Cramer, Dane M.; Eadie, John M.; Gray, Matthew J.; Hagy, Heath M.; Livolsi, Mark; McWilliams, Scott R.; Petrie, Matthew; Soulliere, Gregory J.; Tirpak, John M.; Webb, Elisabeth B.

    2014-01-01

    Population-based habitat conservation planning for migrating and wintering waterfowl in North America is carried out by habitat Joint Venture (JV) initiatives and is based on the premise that food can limit demography (i.e. food limitation hypothesis). Consequently, planners use bioenergetic models to estimate food (energy) availability and population-level energy demands at appropriate spatial and temporal scales, and translate these values into regional habitat objectives. While simple in principle, there are both empirical and theoretical challenges associated with calculating energy supply and demand including: 1) estimating food availability, 2) estimating the energy content of specific foods, 3) extrapolating site-specific estimates of food availability to landscapes for focal species, 4) applicability of estimates from a single species to other species, 5) estimating resting metabolic rate, 6) estimating cost of daily behaviours, and 7) estimating costs of thermoregulation or tissue synthesis. Most models being used are daily ration models (DRMs) whose set of simplifying assumptions are well established and whose use is widely accepted and feasible given the empirical data available to populate such models. However, DRMs do not link habitat objectives to metrics of ultimate ecological importance such as individual body condition or survival, and largely only consider food-producing habitats. Agent-based models (ABMs) provide a possible alternative for creating more biologically realistic models under some conditions; however, ABMs require different types of empirical inputs, many of which have yet to be estimated for key North American waterfowl. Decisions about how JVs can best proceed with habitat conservation would benefit from the use of sensitivity analyses that could identify the empirical and theoretical uncertainties that have the greatest influence on efforts to estimate habitat carrying capacity. Development of ABMs at

  13. Habitat use of breeding green turtles Chelonia mydas tagged in Dry Tortugas National Park: Making use of local and regional MPAs

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Hart, Kristen; Zawada, David G.; Fujisaki, Ikuko; Lidz, Barbara H.

    2013-01-01

    Use of existing marine protected areas (MPAs) by far-ranging marine turtles can be determined using satellite telemetry. Because of a lack of information on MPA use by marine turtles in the Gulf of Mexico, we used satellite transmitters in 2010 and 2011 to track movements of 11 adult female breeding green turtles (Chelonia mydas) tagged in Dry Tortugas National Park (DRTO), in the Gulf of Mexico, south Florida, USA. Throughout the study period, turtles emerged every 9–18 days to nest. During the intervals between nesting episodes (i.e., inter-nesting periods), the turtles consistently used a common core-area within the DRTO boundary, determined using individual 50% kernel-density estimates (KDEs). We mapped the area in DRTO where individual turtle 50% KDEs overlapped using the USGS Along-Track Reef-Imaging System, and determined the diversity and distribution of various benthic-cover types within the mapped area. We also tracked turtles post-nesting as they transited to foraging sites 5–282 km away from tagging beaches; these sites were located both within DRTO and in the surrounding area of the Florida Keys and Florida Keys National Marine Sanctuary (FKNMS), a regional MPA. Year-round residency of 9 out of 11 individuals (82%) both within DRTO and in the FKNMS represents novel non-migratory behavior, which offers an opportunity for conservation of this imperiled species at both local and regional scales. These data comprise the first satellite-tracking results on adult nesting green turtles at this remote study site. Additional tracking could reveal whether the distinct inter-nesting and foraging sites delineated here will be repeatedly used in the future by these and other breeding green turtles.

  14. Breeding of lager yeast with Saccharomyces cerevisiae improves stress resistance and fermentation performance.

    PubMed

    Garcia Sanchez, Rosa; Solodovnikova, Natalia; Wendland, Jürgen

    2012-08-01

    Lager beer brewing relies on strains collectively known as Saccharomyces carlsbergensis, which are hybrids between S. cerevisiae and S. eubayanus-like strains. Lager yeasts are particularly adapted to low-temperature fermentations. Selection of new yeast strains for improved traits or fermentation performance is laborious, due to the allotetraploid nature of lager yeasts. Initially, we have generated new F1 hybrids by classical genetics, using spore clones of lager yeast and S. cerevisiae and complementation of auxotrophies of the single strains upon mating. These hybrids were improved on several parameters, including growth at elevated temperature and resistance against high osmolarity or high ethanol concentrations. Due to the uncertainty of chromosomal make-up of lager yeast spore clones, we introduced molecular markers to analyse mating-type composition by PCR. Based on these results, new hybrids between a lager and an ale yeast strain were isolated by micromanipulation. These hybrids were not subject to genetic modification. We generated and verified 13 hybrid strains. All of these hybrid strains showed improved stress resistance as seen in the ale parent, including improved survival at the end of fermentation. Importantly, some of the strains showed improved fermentation rates using 18° Plato at 18-25°C. Uniparental mitochondrial DNA inheritance was observed mostly from the S. cerevisiae parent. PMID:22887121

  15. Transcriptome analysis of a breeding program pedigree examines gene expression diversity and reveals target genes for malting quality improvement

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Advanced cycle breeding utilizes crosses among elite lines and is a successful method to develop new inbreds. However, it results in a reduction in genetic diversity within the breeding population. The development of malting barley varieties requires the adherence to a narrow malting quality profile...

  16. Kootenai River Wildlife Habitat Enhancement Project : Long-term Bighorn Sheep/Mule Deer Winter and Spring Habitat Improvement Project : Wildlife Mitigation Project, Libby Dam, Montana : Management Plan.

    SciTech Connect

    Yde, Chis

    1990-06-01

    The Libby hydroelectric project, located on the Kootenai River in northwestern Montana, resulted in several impacts to the wildlife communities which occupied the habitats inundated by Lake Koocanusa. Montana Department of Fish, Wildlife and Parks, in cooperation with the other management agencies, developed an impact assessment and a wildlife and wildlife habitat mitigation plan for the Libby hydroelectric facility. In response to the mitigation plan, Bonneville Power Administration funded a cooperative project between the Kootenai National Forest and Montana Department of Fish, Wildlife and Parks to develop a long-term habitat enhancement plan for the bighorn sheep and mule deer winter and spring ranges adjacent to Lake Koocanusa. The project goal is to rehabilitate 3372 acres of bighorn sheep and 16,321 acres of mule deer winter and spring ranges on Kootenai National Forest lands adjacent to Lake Koocanusa and to monitor and evaluate the effects of implementing this habitat enhancement work. 2 refs.

  17. Mosquito breeding site water temperature observations and simulations towards improved vector-borne disease models for Africa.

    PubMed

    Asare, Ernest O; Tompkins, Adrian M; Amekudzi, Leonard K; Ermert, Volker; Redl, Robert

    2016-01-01

    An energy budget model is developed to predict water temperature of typical mosquito larval developmental habitats. It assumes a homogeneous mixed water column driven by empirically derived fluxes. The model shows good agreement at both hourly and daily time scales with 10-min temporal resolution observed water temperatures, monitored between June and November 2013 within a peri-urban area of Kumasi, Ghana. There was a close match between larvae development times calculated using either the model-derived or observed water temperatures. The water temperature scheme represents a significant improvement over assuming the water temperature to be equal to air temperature. The energy budget model requires observed minimum and maximum temperatures, information that is generally available from weather stations. Our results show that hourly variations in water temperature are important for the simulation of aquatic-stage development times. By contrast, we found that larval development is insensitive to sub-hourly variations. Modelling suggests that in addition to water temperature, accurate estimation of degree-day development time is very important to correctly predict the larvae development times. The results highlight the potential of the model to predict water temperature of temporary bodies of surface water. Our study represents an important contribution towards the improvement of weatherdriven dynamical disease models, including those designed for malaria early forecasting systems. PMID:27063735

  18. Genome Wide Screening of Candidate Genes for Improving Piglet Birth Weight Using High and Low Estimated Breeding Value Populations

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Lifan; Zhou, Xiang; Michal, Jennifer J.; Ding, Bo; Li, Rui; Jiang, Zhihua

    2014-01-01

    Birth weight is an economically important trait in pig production because it directly impacts piglet growth and survival rate. In the present study, we performed a genome wide survey of candidate genes and pathways associated with individual birth weight (IBW) using the Illumina PorcineSNP60 BeadChip on 24 high (HEBV) and 24 low estimated breeding value (LEBV) animals. These animals were selected from a reference population of 522 individuals produced by three sires and six dam lines, which were crossbreds with multiple breeds. After quality-control, 43,257 SNPs (single nucleotide polymorphisms), including 42,243 autosomal SNPs and 1,014 SNPs on chromosome X, were used in the data analysis. A total of 27 differentially selected regions (DSRs), including 1 on Sus scrofa chromosome 1 (SSC1), 1 on SSC4, 2 on SSC5, 4 on SSC6, 2 on SSC7, 5 on SSC8, 3 on SSC9, 1 on SSC14, 3 on SSC18, and 5 on SSCX, were identified to show the genome wide separations between the HEBV and LEBV groups for IBW in piglets. A DSR with the most number of significant SNPs (including 7 top 0.1% and 31 top 5% SNPs) was located on SSC6, while another DSR with the largest genetic differences in FST was found on SSC18. These regions harbor known functionally important genes involved in growth and development, such as TNFRSF9 (tumor necrosis factor receptor superfamily member 9), CA6 (carbonic anhydrase VI) and MDFIC (MyoD family inhibitor domain containing). A DSR rich in imprinting genes appeared on SSC9, which included PEG10 (paternally expressed 10), SGCE (sarcoglycan, epsilon), PPP1R9A (protein phosphatase 1, regulatory subunit 9A) and ASB4 (ankyrin repeat and SOCS box containing 4). More importantly, our present study provided evidence to support six quantitative trait loci (QTL) regions for pig birth weight, six QTL regions for average birth weight (ABW) and three QTL regions for litter birth weight (LBW) reported previously by other groups. Furthermore, gene ontology analysis with 183 genes

  19. Breeding sites of Phlebotomus sergenti, the sand fly vector of cutaneous leishmaniasis in the Judean Desert.

    PubMed

    Moncaz, Aviad; Faiman, Roy; Kirstein, Oscar; Warburg, Alon

    2012-01-01

    Phlebotomine sand flies transmit Leishmania, phlebo-viruses and Bartonella to humans. A prominent gap in our knowledge of sand fly biology remains the ecology of their immature stages. Sand flies, unlike mosquitoes do not breed in water and only small numbers of larvae have been recovered from diverse habitats that provide stable temperatures, high humidity and decaying organic matter. We describe studies designed to identify and characterize sand fly breeding habitats in a Judean Desert focus of cutaneous leishmaniasis. To detect breeding habitats we constructed emergence traps comprising sand fly-proof netting covering defined areas or cave openings. Large size horizontal sticky traps within the confined spaces were used to trap the sand flies. Newly eclosed male sand flies were identified based on their un-rotated genitalia. Cumulative results show that Phlebotomus sergenti the vector of Leishmania tropica rests and breeds inside caves that are also home to rock hyraxes (the reservoir hosts of L. tropica) and several rodent species. Emerging sand flies were also trapped outside covered caves, probably arriving from other caves or from smaller, concealed cracks in the rocky ledges close by. Man-made support walls constructed with large boulders were also identified as breeding habitats for Ph. sergenti albeit less important than caves. Soil samples obtained from caves and burrows were rich in organic matter and salt content. In this study we developed and put into practice a generalized experimental scheme for identifying sand fly breeding habitats and for assessing the quantities of flies that emerge from them. An improved understanding of sand fly larval ecology should facilitate the implementation of effective control strategies of sand fly vectors of Leishmania. PMID:22802981

  20. Breeding Sites of Phlebotomus sergenti, the Sand Fly Vector of Cutaneous Leishmaniasis in the Judean Desert

    PubMed Central

    Moncaz, Aviad; Faiman, Roy; Kirstein, Oscar; Warburg, Alon

    2012-01-01

    Phlebotomine sand flies transmit Leishmania, phlebo-viruses and Bartonella to humans. A prominent gap in our knowledge of sand fly biology remains the ecology of their immature stages. Sand flies, unlike mosquitoes do not breed in water and only small numbers of larvae have been recovered from diverse habitats that provide stable temperatures, high humidity and decaying organic matter. We describe studies designed to identify and characterize sand fly breeding habitats in a Judean Desert focus of cutaneous leishmaniasis. To detect breeding habitats we constructed emergence traps comprising sand fly-proof netting covering defined areas or cave openings. Large size horizontal sticky traps within the confined spaces were used to trap the sand flies. Newly eclosed male sand flies were identified based on their un-rotated genitalia. Cumulative results show that Phlebotomus sergenti the vector of Leishmania tropica rests and breeds inside caves that are also home to rock hyraxes (the reservoir hosts of L. tropica) and several rodent species. Emerging sand flies were also trapped outside covered caves, probably arriving from other caves or from smaller, concealed cracks in the rocky ledges close by. Man-made support walls constructed with large boulders were also identified as breeding habitats for Ph. sergenti albeit less important than caves. Soil samples obtained from caves and burrows were rich in organic matter and salt content. In this study we developed and put into practice a generalized experimental scheme for identifying sand fly breeding habitats and for assessing the quantities of flies that emerge from them. An improved understanding of sand fly larval ecology should facilitate the implementation of effective control strategies of sand fly vectors of Leishmania. PMID:22802981

  1. Use of LANDSAT data to assess waterfowl habitat quality

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Colwell, J. E.; Gilmer, D. S. (Principal Investigator); Work, E. A., Jr.; Rebel, D. L.; Roller, N. E. G.

    1978-01-01

    The author has identified the following significant results. The capability of mapping ponds over a very large area was demonstrated, with multidate, multiframe LANDSAT imagery. A small double sample of aircraft data made it possible to adjust a LANDSAT large area census. Terrain classification was improved by using multitemporal LANDSAT data. Waterfowl production was estimated, using remotely determined pond data, in conjunction with FWS estimates of breeding population. Relative waterfowl habitat quality was characterized on a section by section basis.

  2. Apricot Breeding

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Apricot orchard area and fruit production are increasing worldwide. Breeding programs engage in apricot development to provide new varieties to meet needs of producers and consumers. Over the last 20 years, breeders have used new techniques to assist in variety development and to increase breeding...

  3. Improvement of Basmati rice varieties for resistance to blast and bacterial blight diseases using marker assisted backcross breeding.

    PubMed

    Ellur, Ranjith K; Khanna, Apurva; Yadav, Ashutosh; Pathania, Sandeep; Rajashekara, H; Singh, Vikas K; Gopala Krishnan, S; Bhowmick, Prolay K; Nagarajan, M; Vinod, K K; Prakash, G; Mondal, Kalyan K; Singh, Nagendra K; Vinod Prabhu, K; Singh, Ashok K

    2016-01-01

    Marker assisted backcross breeding was employed to incorporate the blast resistance genes, Pi2 and Pi54 and bacterial blight (BB) resistance genes xa13 and Xa21 into the genetic background of Pusa Basmati 1121 (PB1121) and Pusa Basmati 6. Foreground selection for target gene(s) was followed by arduous phenotypic and background selection which fast-tracked the recovery of recurrent parent genome (RPG) to an extent of 95.8% in one of the near-isogenic lines (NILs) namely, Pusa 1728-23-33-31-56, which also showed high degree of resemblance to recurrent parent, PB6 in phenotype. The phenotypic selection prior to background selection provided an additional opportunity for identifying the novel recombinants viz., Pusa 1884-9-12-14 and Pusa 1884-3-9-175, superior to parental lines in terms of early maturity, higher yield and improved quality parameters. There was no significant difference between the RPG recovery estimated based on SSR or SNP markers, however, the panel of SNPs markers was considered as the better choice for background selection as it provided better genome coverage and included SNPs in the genic regions. Multi-location evaluation of NILs depicted their stable and high mean performance in comparison to the respective recurrent parents. The Pi2+Pi54 carrying NILs were effective in combating a pan-India panel of Magnaporthe oryzae isolates with high level of field resistance in northern, eastern and southern parts of India. Alongside, the PB1121-NILs and PB6-NILs carrying BB resistance genes xa13+Xa21 were resistant against Xanthomonas oryzae pv. oryzae races of north-western, southern and eastern parts of the country. Three of NILs developed in this study, have been promoted to final stage of testing during the ​Kharif 2015 in the Indian National Basmati Trial. PMID:26566849

  4. Using livestock grazing to improve habitat for Mountain Plovers: A summary of responses after 3 years of treatments

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Livestock grazing is widely viewed as having negative effects on wildlife populations, but some species may benefit from habitat conditions produced by grazing, suggesting that under particular circumstances, grazing may be an effective habitat management tool. Mountain Plover (Charadrius montanus)...

  5. Combining Breeding Bird Survey and distance sampling to estimate density of migrant and breeding birds

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Somershoe, S.G.; Twedt, D.J.; Reid, B.

    2006-01-01

    We combined Breeding Bird Survey point count protocol and distance sampling to survey spring migrant and breeding birds in Vicksburg National Military Park on 33 days between March and June of 2003 and 2004. For 26 of 106 detected species, we used program DISTANCE to estimate detection probabilities and densities from 660 3-min point counts in which detections were recorded within four distance annuli. For most species, estimates of detection probability, and thereby density estimates, were improved through incorporation of the proportion of forest cover at point count locations as a covariate. Our results suggest Breeding Bird Surveys would benefit from the use of distance sampling and a quantitative characterization of habitat at point count locations. During spring migration, we estimated that the most common migrant species accounted for a population of 5000-9000 birds in Vicksburg National Military Park (636 ha). Species with average populations of 300 individuals during migration were: Blue-gray Gnatcatcher (Polioptila caerulea), Cedar Waxwing (Bombycilla cedrorum), White-eyed Vireo (Vireo griseus), Indigo Bunting (Passerina cyanea), and Ruby-crowned Kinglet (Regulus calendula). Of 56 species that bred in Vicksburg National Military Park, we estimated that the most common 18 species accounted for 8150 individuals. The six most abundant breeding species, Blue-gray Gnatcatcher, White-eyed Vireo, Summer Tanager (Piranga rubra), Northern Cardinal (Cardinalis cardinalis), Carolina Wren (Thryothorus ludovicianus), and Brown-headed Cowbird (Molothrus ater), accounted for 5800 individuals.

  6. Improving proliferation resistance of high breeding gain generation 4 reactors using blankets composed of light water reactor waste

    SciTech Connect

    Hellesen, C.; Grape, S.; Haakanson, A.; Jacobson Svaerd, S.; Jansson, P.

    2013-07-01

    Fertile blankets can be used in fast reactors to enhance the breeding gain as well as the passive safety characteristics. However, such blankets typically result in the production of weapons grade plutonium. For this reason they are often excluded from Generation IV reactor designs. In this paper we demonstrate that using blankets manufactured directly from spent light water (LWR) reactor fuel it is possible to produce a plutonium product with non-proliferation characteristics on a par with spent LWR fuel of 30-50 MWd/kg burnup. The beneficial breeding and safety characteristics are retained. (authors)

  7. Western Juniper Management: Assessing Strategies for Improving Greater Sage-grouse Habitat and Rangeland Productivity.

    PubMed

    Farzan, Shahla; Young, Derek J N; Dedrick, Allison G; Hamilton, Matthew; Porse, Erik C; Coates, Peter S; Sampson, Gabriel

    2015-09-01

    Western juniper (Juniperus occidentalis subsp. occidentalis) range expansion into sagebrush steppe ecosystems has affected both native wildlife and economic livelihoods across western North America. The potential listing of the greater sage-grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus) under the U.S. Endangered Species Act has spurred a decade of juniper removal efforts, yet limited research has evaluated program effectiveness. We used a multi-objective spatially explicit model to identify optimal juniper removal sites in Northeastern California across weighted goals for ecological (sage-grouse habitat) and economic (cattle forage production) benefits. We also extended the analysis through alternative case scenarios that tested the effects of coordination among federal agencies, budgetary constraints, and the use of fire as a juniper treatment method. We found that sage-grouse conservation and forage production goals are somewhat complementary, but the extent of complementary benefits strongly depends on spatial factors and management approaches. Certain management actions substantially increase achievable benefits, including agency coordination and the use of prescribed burns to remove juniper. Critically, our results indicate that juniper management strategies designed to increase cattle forage do not necessarily achieve measurable sage-grouse benefits, underscoring the need for program evaluation and monitoring. PMID:25957623

  8. Western juniper management: assessing strategies for improving greater sage-grouse habitat and rangeland productivity

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Farzan, Shahla; Young, Derek J.N.; Dedrick, Allison G.; Hamilton, Mattew; Porse, Erik C.; Coates, Peter S.; Sampson, Gabriel

    2015-01-01

    Western juniper (Juniperus occidentalis subsp. occidentalis) range expansion into sagebrush steppe ecosystems has affected both native wildlife and economic livelihoods across western North America. The potential listing of the greater sage-grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus) under the U.S. Endangered Species Act has spurred a decade of juniper removal efforts, yet limited research has evaluated program effectiveness. We used a multi-objective spatially explicit model to identify optimal juniper removal sites in Northeastern California across weighted goals for ecological (sage-grouse habitat) and economic (cattle forage production) benefits. We also extended the analysis through alternative case scenarios that tested the effects of coordination among federal agencies, budgetary constraints, and the use of fire as a juniper treatment method. We found that sage-grouse conservation and forage production goals are somewhat complementary, but the extent of complementary benefits strongly depends on spatial factors and management approaches. Certain management actions substantially increase achievable benefits, including agency coordination and the use of prescribed burns to remove juniper. Critically, our results indicate that juniper management strategies designed to increase cattle forage do not necessarily achieve measurable sage-grouse benefits, underscoring the need for program evaluation and monitoring.

  9. Western Juniper Management: Assessing Strategies for Improving Greater Sage-grouse Habitat and Rangeland Productivity

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Farzan, Shahla; Young, Derek J. N.; Dedrick, Allison G.; Hamilton, Matthew; Porse, Erik C.; Coates, Peter S.; Sampson, Gabriel

    2015-09-01

    Western juniper ( Juniperus occidentalis subsp. occidentalis) range expansion into sagebrush steppe ecosystems has affected both native wildlife and economic livelihoods across western North America. The potential listing of the greater sage-grouse ( Centrocercus urophasianus) under the U.S. Endangered Species Act has spurred a decade of juniper removal efforts, yet limited research has evaluated program effectiveness. We used a multi-objective spatially explicit model to identify optimal juniper removal sites in Northeastern California across weighted goals for ecological (sage-grouse habitat) and economic (cattle forage production) benefits. We also extended the analysis through alternative case scenarios that tested the effects of coordination among federal agencies, budgetary constraints, and the use of fire as a juniper treatment method. We found that sage-grouse conservation and forage production goals are somewhat complementary, but the extent of complementary benefits strongly depends on spatial factors and management approaches. Certain management actions substantially increase achievable benefits, including agency coordination and the use of prescribed burns to remove juniper. Critically, our results indicate that juniper management strategies designed to increase cattle forage do not necessarily achieve measurable sage-grouse benefits, underscoring the need for program evaluation and monitoring.

  10. Integration of selective breeding and vaccination to improve disease resistance in aquaculture: Application to control bacterial cold water disease

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Bacterial cold water disease (BCWD) is a frequent cause of elevated mortality in rainbow trout and the development of effective control strategies is a priority within the U.S. A goal of the NCCCWA breeding program is to produce germplasm with superior growth and survival following exposure to infe...

  11. Genetic improvement through selective breeding: Part of an integrated strategy to reduce disease loss and Antibiotic use

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Bacterial cold water disease (BCWD) is a frequent cause of elevated mortality in rainbow trout, and outbreaks often require the use of antibiotic treatment. Since antimicrobial resistance is of concern, additional control methods are desirable. Family-based selective breeding offers new opportuniti...

  12. Adaptive traits of indigenous cattle breeds: The Mediterranean Baladi as a case study.

    PubMed

    Shabtay, Ariel

    2015-11-01

    Generally taken, breeds of Bos taurus ancestry are considered more productive, in comparison with Bos indicus derived breeds that present enhanced hardiness and disease resistance, low nutritional requirements and higher capability of feed utilization. While breeds of B. taurus have been mostly selected for intensive production systems, indigenous cattle, developed mostly from indicine and African taurines, flourish in extensive habitats. Worldwide demographic and economic processes face animal production with new challenges - the increasing demand for animal food products. Intensification of animal husbandry is thus a desired goal in stricken parts of the world. An introduction of productive traits to indigenous breeds might serve to generate improved biological and economic efficiencies. For this to succeed, the genetic merit of traits like efficiency of feed utilization and product quality should be revealed, encouraging the conservation initiatives of indigenous cattle populations, many of which are already extinct and endangered. Moreover, to overcome potential genetic homogeneity, controlled breeding practices should be undertaken. The Baladi cattle are a native local breed found throughout the Mediterranean basin. Purebred Baladi animals are rapidly vanishing, as more European breeds are being introduced or used for backcrosses leading to improved production. The superiority of Baladi over large-framed cattle, in feedlot and on Mediterranean pasture, with respect to adaptability and efficiency, is highlighted in the current review. PMID:26025652

  13. SM09A and SM09B: Romaine Lettuce Breeding Lines Resistant to Dieback and with Improved Shelf-life.

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    SM09A and SM09B are F8 romaine breeding lines of lettuce (Lactuca sativa L.) resistant to dieback and with good shelf-life. SM09B was selected from a cross between ‘Darkland’ and PI491224, while SM09A was developed from ‘Green Towers’ × (‘Darkland’ × PI491224). Resistance to the disease in both bree...

  14. Integration of BpMADS4 on various linkage groups improves the utilization of the rapid cycle breeding system in apple.

    PubMed

    Weigl, Kathleen; Wenzel, Stephanie; Flachowsky, Henryk; Peil, Andreas; Hanke, Magda-Viola

    2015-02-01

    Rapid cycle breeding in apple is a new approach for the rapid introgression of agronomically relevant traits (e.g. disease resistances) from wild apple species into domestic apple cultivars (Malus × domestica Borkh.). This technique drastically shortens the long-lasting juvenile phase of apple. The utilization of early-flowering apple lines overexpressing the BpMADS4 gene of the European silver birch (Betula pendula Roth.) in hybridization resulted in one breeding cycle per year. Aiming for the selection of non-transgenic null segregants at the end of the breeding process, the flower-inducing transgene and the gene of interest (e.g. resistance gene) that will be introgressed by hybridization need to be located on different chromosomes. To improve the flexibility of the existing approach in apple, this study was focused on the development and characterization of eleven additional BpMADS4 overexpressing lines of four different apple cultivars. In nine lines, the flowering gene was mapped to different linkage groups. The differences in introgressed T-DNA sequences and plant genome deletions post-transformation highlighted the unique molecular character of each line. However, transgenic lines demonstrated no significant differences in flower organ development and pollen functionality compared with non-transgenic plants. Hybridization studies using pollen from the fire blight-resistant wild species accession Malus fusca MAL0045 and the apple scab-resistant cultivar 'Regia' indicated that BpMADS4 introgression had no significant effect on the breeding value of each transgenic line. PMID:25370729

  15. Bald eagle habitat suitability on Melton Hill Reservoir and the Clinch River

    SciTech Connect

    Buehler, D.A.

    1994-09-01

    The area around Melton Hill Reservoir and sections of the Clinch River along the Oak Ridge Reservation (ORR) provide suitable habitat for bald eagles for both breeding and wintering activities. Primary limitations on habitat suitability appear to be human activity in aquatic habitats and along shoreline areas, and human development along shoreline areas. ORR provides the majority of the suitable habitat because shoreline development is very limited. Four eagle management strategies discussed for ORR include planning development away from high-quality habitats, allowing forest stands near water to mature, conducting timber stand improvement to foster growth and development in pines and hardwoods, and using introductions to foster the development of a breeding population. The primary objective of this project was to make a qualitative assessment of bald eagle habitat suitability along Melton Hill Reservoir and the Clinch River and in adjacent areas on the ORR, including the proposed Advanced Neutron Source site. This survey`s aim was to provide ORR managers with an indication of whether suitable habitat exists and, if so, where it occurs on ORR. This information should provide the basis for incorporating eagle management into the overall ORR land management plan.

  16. Hungry Horse Dam Fisheries Mitigation : Fish Passage and Habitat Improvement in the Upper Flathead River Basin, 1991-1996 Progress Report.

    SciTech Connect

    Knotek, W.Ladd; Deleray, Mark; Marotz, Brian L.

    1997-08-01

    In the past 50 years, dramatic changes have occurred in the Flathead Lake and River system. Degradation of fishery resources has been evident, in part due to deterioration of aquatic habitat and introduction of non-endemic fish and invertebrate species. Habitat loss has been attributed to many factors including the construction and operation of Hungry Horse Dam, unsound land use practices, urban development, and other anthropogenic and natural disturbances. Fish migration has also been limited by barriers such as dams and impassible culverts. Cumulatively, these factors have contributed to declines in the distribution and abundance of native fish populations. Recovery of fish populations requires that a watershed approach be developed that incorporates long-term aquatic habitat needs and promotes sound land use practices and cooperation among natural resource management agencies. In this document, the authors (1) describe completed and ongoing habitat improvement and fish passage activities under the Hungry Horse Fisheries Mitigation Program, (2) describe recently identified projects that are in the planning stage, and (3) develop a framework for identifying prioritizing, implementing, and evaluating future fish habitat improvement and passage projects.

  17. RosBREED: Enabling Marker-Assisted Breeding In Rosaceae

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    RosBREED will create a national, dynamic, sustained effort in research, infrastructure establishment, training, and extension for applying marker-assisted breeding (MAB) to deliver improved plant materials more efficiently and rapidly. The Rosaceae family (including apple, peach, sweet and tart cher...

  18. Road to the Future: Strategies for Wildlife Crossings and Youth Empowerment to Improve Wildlife Habitat in Roaded Landscapes

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Tanner, Dawn Renee

    2010-01-01

    As the footprint of human society expands upon the earth, habitat loss and landscape fragmentation is an increasing global problem. That problem includes loss of native habitats as these areas are harvested, converted to agricultural crops, and occupied by human settlement. Roads increase human access to previously inaccessible areas, encourage…

  19. Use of Landsat data to assess waterfowl habitat quality

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Colwell, J.E.; Gilmer, D.S.; Work, E.A., Jr.; Rebel, D.

    1978-01-01

    This report is a discussion of the feasibility of using Landsat data to generate information of value for effective management of migratory waterfowl. Effective management of waterfowl includes regulating waterfowl populations through hunting regulations and habitat management. This report examines the ability to analyze annual production by monitoring the number of breeding and brood ponds that are present, and the ability to assess waterfowl habitat based on the various relationships between ponds and the surrounding upland terrain types. The basic conclusions of this report are that: 1) Landsat data can be used to improve estimates of pond numbers which may be correlated with duck production; and 2) Landsat data can be used to generate information on terrain types which subsequently can be used to assess relative waterfowl habitat quality.

  20. Red Clover Breeding Progress

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Red clover (Trifolium pratense L.) is an important forage legume grown on approximately 4 million hectares worldwide. It has a long and varied history in agriculture. Active breeding efforts began at the end of the 19th century. Since this time significant improvement in red clover cultivar for a...

  1. Raspberry Breeding and Genetics

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    This chapter describes the origin, speciation, and history of improvement of the raspberries, Rubus section idaeobatus. The world industry in North America, Australasia, China, Europe, Eastern Europe, Africa, and South America and the breeding objectives of programs in those areas are discussed. Ger...

  2. Breeding productivity and adult survival in nongame birds

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Martin, Thomas E.; DeSante, David F.; Paine, Charles R.; Donovan, Therese M.; Dettmers, Randy; Manolis, J.C.; Burton, K.

    1995-01-01

    Demographic data (breeding productivity and adult survival) provide the kind of early warning signal that allows detection of unhealthy populations in terms of productivity or survival problems (Martin and Guepel 1993). In addition, demographic data can help determine whether population declines are the result of low breeding productivity or low survival in migration or winter. Breeding productivity data also can help identify habitat conditions associated with successful and failed breeding attempts. Such information is critical for developing habitat- and land-management practices (Martin 1992). Here, we provide examples of the kinds of information that can be obtained by broad-scale demographic studies.

  3. The use of agrobiodiversity for plant improvement and the intellectual property paradigm: institutional fit and legal tools for mass selection, conventional and molecular plant breeding.

    PubMed

    Batur, Fulya; Dedeurwaerdere, Tom

    2014-12-01

    Focused on the impact of stringent intellectual property mechanisms over the uses of plant agricultural biodiversity in crop improvement, the article delves into a systematic analysis of the relationship between institutional paradigms and their technological contexts of application, identified as mass selection, controlled hybridisation, molecular breeding tools and transgenics. While the strong property paradigm has proven effective in the context of major leaps forward in genetic engineering, it faces a systematic breakdown when extended to mass selection, where innovation often displays a collective nature. However, it also creates partial blockages in those innovation schemes rested between on-farm observation and genetic modification, i.e. conventional plant breeding and upstream molecular biology research tools. Neither overly strong intellectual property rights, nor the absence of well delineated protection have proven an optimal fit for these two intermediary socio-technological systems of cumulative incremental innovation. To address these challenges, the authors look at appropriate institutional alternatives which can create effective incentives for in situ agrobiodiversity conservation and the equitable distribution of technologies in plant improvement, using the flexibilities of the TRIPS Agreement, the liability rules set forth in patents or plant variety rights themselves (in the form of farmers', breeders' and research exceptions), and other ad hoc reward regimes. PMID:26085450

  4. Landscape selection by piping plovers has implications for measuring habitat and population size

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Anteau, Michael J.; Shaffer, Terry L.; Wiltermuth, Mark T.; Sherfy, Mark H.

    2014-01-01

    How breeding birds distribute in relation to landscape-scale habitat features has important implications for conservation because those features may constrain habitat suitability. Furthermore, knowledge of these associations can help build models to improve area-wide demographic estimates or to develop a sampling stratification for research and monitoring. This is particularly important for rare species that have uneven distributions across vast areas, such as the federally listed piping plover (Charadrius melodus; hereafter plover). We examined how remotely-sensed landscape features influenced the distribution of breeding plover pairs among 2-km shoreline segments during 2006–2009 at Lake Sakakawea in North Dakota, USA. We found strong associations between remotely-sensed landscape features and plover abundance and distribution (R2 = 0.65). Plovers were nearly absent from segments with bluffs (>25 m elevation increase within 250 m of shoreline). Relative plover density (pairs/ha) was markedly greater on islands (4.84 ± 1.22 SE) than on mainlands (0.85 ± 0.17 SE). Pair numbers increased with abundance of nesting habitat (unvegetated-flat areas β^=0.28±0.08SE ). On islands, pair numbers also increased with the relative proportion of the total area that was habitat ( β^=3.27±0.46SE ). Our model could be adapted to estimate the breeding population of plovers or to make predictions that provide a basis for stratification and design of future surveys. Knowledge of landscape features, such as bluffs, that exclude use by birds refines habitat suitability and facilitates more accurate estimates of habitat and population abundance, by decreasing the size of the sampling universe. Furthermore, techniques demonstrated here are applicable to other vast areas where birds breed in sparse or uneven densities.

  5. Dairy Cattle: Breeding and Genetics

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Five primary factors affect breeding genetically improved dairy cattle: 1) identification, 2) pedigree, 3) performance recording, 4) artificial insemination, and 5) genetic evaluation systems (traditional and genomic). Genetic progress can be measured as increased efficiency (higher performance with...

  6. Consistency in habitat preference of forest bird species

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Noon, B.R.; Dawson, D.K.; Inkley, D.B.; Robbins, C.S.; Anderson, S.H.

    1980-01-01

    The important management conclusion that follows from our results is that the habitat requirements of most forest bird species, although quite specific for each species, apply generally throughout their breeding ranges. Thus a habitat management program that proves beneficial in one part of the breeding range of a species has a high likelihood of success in an area hundreds of kilometers away. Site-specific programs may be necessary for successful management of species whose habitat preferences change across their range. Alternatively, geographical variation in habitat use may indicate that a species' habitat requirements are easily met and that effective management for the species is more readily attained. Close monitoring of a species' response to specific management programs will be required to resolve whether species showing geographic variation in habitat preference are habitat specialists or simply habitat generalists with varying responses to habitat structure

  7. Natural Propagation and Habitat Improvement, Volume I, Oregon Supplement 5: White River Falls Fish Passage, 1983 Annual Report.

    SciTech Connect

    Lindsay, Robert

    1984-04-01

    Biological and physical characteristics of White River drainage were studied in 1983 to determine the feasibility of introducing anadromous salmonids into the watershed. Access to White River by anadromous fish is presently blocked by waterfalls located 3.4 km from the confluence with the Deschutes River. Mortality of juvenile chinook salmon from a 43 m free fall at White River Falls does not appear to be significant during high flows (300 to 500 cfs) but may be significant at low flows (115 to 150 cfs). At low flow the recapture of fish released in the south channel above the falls was 54% lower than the recapture of control fish released below the falls. The recapture of two releases in the north channel was 37% lower than the recapture of control groups. We surveyed 94 km of the lower reaches of 7 tributaries below the boundary of the Mt. Hood National Forest. We identified 8325 m/sup 2/ of anadromous spawning gravel of which 52% was good quality, 20 water withdrawals for irrigation that took a total of 33 cfs of water, 13 barriers to upstream migration of which 3 were waterfalls of 3.1 to 7.6 m, and 138 major holding and rearing pools. Maximum water temperatures of 25/sup 0/C or greater and diurnal fluctuations of around 10/sup 0/C were recorded in the lower reaches of several streams. The maximum water temperature in upper reaches of streams above the forest boundary was 13 to 14/sup 0/C. Habitat improvement opportunities identified in surveys of the lower reaches included barrier modifications for upstream passage, in-stream structures to develop pools and retain gravels, structures to reduce bank erosion, and streamside fensing to protect riparian zones. 10 references, 34 figures, 20 tables.

  8. Genome-wide Association Study (GWAS) and Its Application for Improving the Genomic Estimated Breeding Values (GEBV) of the Berkshire Pork Quality Traits

    PubMed Central

    Lee, Young-Sup; Jeong, Hyeonsoo; Taye, Mengistie; Kim, Hyeon Jeong; Ka, Sojeong; Ryu, Youn-Chul; Cho, Seoae

    2015-01-01

    The missing heritability has been a major problem in the analysis of best linear unbiased prediction (BLUP). We introduced the traditional genome-wide association study (GWAS) into the BLUP to improve the heritability estimation. We analyzed eight pork quality traits of the Berkshire breeds using GWAS and BLUP. GWAS detects the putative quantitative trait loci regions given traits. The single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) were obtained using GWAS results with p value <0.01. BLUP analyzed with significant SNPs was much more accurate than that with total genotyped SNPs in terms of narrow-sense heritability. It implies that genomic estimated breeding values (GEBVs) of pork quality traits can be calculated by BLUP via GWAS. The GWAS model was the linear regression using PLINK and BLUP model was the G-BLUP and SNP-GBLUP. The SNP-GBLUP uses SNP-SNP relationship matrix. The BLUP analysis using preprocessing of GWAS can be one of the possible alternatives of solving the missing heritability problem and it can provide alternative BLUP method which can find more accurate GEBVs. PMID:26580278

  9. Non-invasive monitoring of hormones: a tool to improve reproduction in captive breeding of the Eurasian lynx.

    PubMed

    Dehnhard, M; Naidenko, S; Frank, A; Braun, B; Göritz, F; Jewgenow, K

    2008-07-01

    The survival of many critical endangered mammal species is often depending on successful captive breeding programmes which include the future option of reintroduction to the wild. Breeding in captivity also demands the application of modern assisted reproductive techniques to ensure maximal biodiversity, but knowledge on reproductive physiology is often limited. Therefore, non-invasive monitoring of urinary and faecal hormones has become an important tool for reproductive management. To exemplify the importance of non-invasive hormone monitoring, we choose the Eurasian lynx as a model for the world's most endangered felid species, the Iberian lynx. We analysed faecal samples of pregnant and pseudo-pregnant female Eurasian lynxes during a 3-year study period. Compared to pre-mating levels faecal progesterone metabolite profiles revealed a tendency towards higher levels in pregnant and pseudo-pregnant females with no difference between both categories. Oestrogen levels raised in both pregnant and pseudo-pregnant females with a tendency to be more elevated and prolonged in pregnant females. Surprisingly both E2 and P4 metabolites were highly correlated (r(2) =0.8131, p < 0.0001) showing a postpartum increase both in pregnant and pseudo-pregnant females. The results from the Eurasian lynx revealed that the measurement of faecal progesterone metabolites led to profiles dissimilar to profiles shown in other felid species, but similar to those from faecal gestagen metabolite analysis in the Iberian lynx. To identify faecal gestagen and oestrogen metabolites a radio-metabolism study was performed. Using the progesterone immunoassay two major progesterone metabolites were detected demonstrating that the assay indeed tracks the relevant metabolites. The oestrogen assay measured authentic 17beta-oestradiol and oestrone, and their conjugates. The analysis of the faecal metabolite composition in samples from early and late pregnancy and lactation particularly revealed a

  10. Spatial Scaling of Environmental Variables Improves Species-Habitat Models of Fishes in a Small, Sand-Bed Lowland River

    PubMed Central

    Radinger, Johannes; Wolter, Christian; Kail, Jochem

    2015-01-01

    Habitat suitability and the distinct mobility of species depict fundamental keys for explaining and understanding the distribution of river fishes. In recent years, comprehensive data on river hydromorphology has been mapped at spatial scales down to 100 m, potentially serving high resolution species-habitat models, e.g., for fish. However, the relative importance of specific hydromorphological and in-stream habitat variables and their spatial scales of influence is poorly understood. Applying boosted regression trees, we developed species-habitat models for 13 fish species in a sand-bed lowland river based on river morphological and in-stream habitat data. First, we calculated mean values for the predictor variables in five distance classes (from the sampling site up to 4000 m up- and downstream) to identify the spatial scale that best predicts the presence of fish species. Second, we compared the suitability of measured variables and assessment scores related to natural reference conditions. Third, we identified variables which best explained the presence of fish species. The mean model quality (AUC = 0.78, area under the receiver operating characteristic curve) significantly increased when information on the habitat conditions up- and downstream of a sampling site (maximum AUC at 2500 m distance class, +0.049) and topological variables (e.g., stream order) were included (AUC = +0.014). Both measured and assessed variables were similarly well suited to predict species’ presence. Stream order variables and measured cross section features (e.g., width, depth, velocity) were best-suited predictors. In addition, measured channel-bed characteristics (e.g., substrate types) and assessed longitudinal channel features (e.g., naturalness of river planform) were also good predictors. These findings demonstrate (i) the applicability of high resolution river morphological and instream-habitat data (measured and assessed variables) to predict fish presence, (ii) the

  11. Improving the screening of potato breeding lines for specific nutritional traits using portable mid-infrared spectroscopy and multivariate analysis.

    PubMed

    Ayvaz, Huseyin; Bozdogan, Adnan; Giusti, M Monica; Mortas, Mustafa; Gomez, Rene; Rodriguez-Saona, Luis E

    2016-11-15

    Efficient selection of potato varieties with enhanced nutritional quality requires simple, accurate and cost effective assays to obtain tuber chemical composition information. In this study, 75 Andean native potato samples from 7 Solanum species with different colors were characterized and quantified for their anthocyanin, phenolics and sugar content using traditional reference methods. IR (infrared) spectra of potato extracts were collected using a portable infrared system and partial least squares regression (PLSR) calibration models were developed. These models were validated using both full cross-validation and an independent sample set giving strong linear correlation coefficients of prediction (rPred)>0.91 and standard error of prediction (SEP) of 24mg/100g phenolics, 7mg/100g monomeric anthocyanins, 0.1g/100g reducing sugars and 0.12g/100g sucrose. Overall, portable infrared system with PLSR showed great potential to facilitate potato breeding and certain aspects of crop management, material selection for potato processing and related research by providing alternative prediction models. PMID:27283645

  12. Habitat-specific breeder survival of Florida Scrub-Jays: Inferences from multistate models

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Breininger, D.R.; Nichols, J.D.; Carter, G.M.; Oddy, D.M.

    2009-01-01

    Quantifying habitat-specific survival and changes in habitat quality within disturbance-prone habitats is critical for understanding population dynamics and variation in fitness, and for managing degraded ecosystems. We used 18 years of color-banding data and multistate capture-recapture models to test whether habitat quality within territories influences survival and detection probability of breeding Florida Scrub-Jays (Aphelocoma coerulescens) and to estimate bird transition probabilities from one territory quality state to another. Our study sites were along central Florida's Atlantic coast and included two of the four largest metapopulations within the species range. We developed Markov models for habitat transitions and compared these to bird transition probabilities. Florida Scrub-Jay detection probabilities ranged from 0.88 in the tall territory state to 0.99 in the optimal state; detection probabilities were intermediate in the short state. Transition probabilities were similar for birds and habitat in grid cells mapped independently of birds. Thus, bird transitions resulted primarily from habitat transitions between states over time and not from bird movement. Survival ranged from 0.71 in the short state to 0.82 in the optimal state, with tall states being intermediate. We conclude that average Florida Scrub-Jay survival will remain at levels that lead to continued population declines because most current habitat quality is only marginally suitable across most of the species range. Improvements in habitat are likely to be slow and difficult because tall states are resistant to change and the optimal state represents an intermediate transitional stage. The multistate modeling approach to quantifying survival and habitat transition probabilities is useful for quantifying habitat transition probabilities and comparing them to bird transition probabilities to test for habitat selection in dynamic environments. ?? 2009 by the Ecological society ot America.

  13. Can settlement in natal-like habitat explain maladaptive habitat selection?

    PubMed Central

    Piper, Walter H.; Palmer, Michael W.; Banfield, Nathan; Meyer, Michael W.

    2013-01-01

    The study of habitat selection has long been influenced by the ideal free model, which maintains that young adults settle in habitat according to its inherent quality and the density of conspecifics within it. The model has gained support in recent years from the finding that conspecifics produce cues inadvertently that help prebreeders locate good habitat. Yet abundant evidence shows that animals often fail to occupy habitats that ecologists have identified as those of highest quality, leading to the conclusion that young animals settle on breeding spaces by means not widely understood. Here, we report that a phenomenon virtually unknown in nature, natal habitat preference induction (NHPI), is a strong predictor of territory settlement in both male and female common loons (Gavia immer). NHPI causes young animals to settle on natal-like breeding spaces, but not necessarily those that maximize reproductive success. If widespread, NHPI might explain apparently maladaptive habitat settlement. PMID:23804619

  14. Proximate drivers of spatial segregation in non-breeding albatrosses

    PubMed Central

    Clay, Thomas A.; Manica, Andrea; Ryan, Peter G.; Silk, Janet R. D.; Croxall, John P.; Ireland, Louise; Phillips, Richard A.

    2016-01-01

    Many animals partition resources to avoid competition, and in colonially-breeding species this often leads to divergent space or habitat use. During the non-breeding season, foraging constraints are relaxed, yet the patterns and drivers of segregation both between and within populations are poorly understood. We modelled habitat preference to examine how extrinsic (habitat availability and intra-specific competition) and intrinsic factors (population, sex and breeding outcome) influence the distributions of non-breeding grey-headed albatrosses Thalassarche chrysostoma tracked from two major populations, South Georgia (Atlantic Ocean) and the Prince Edward Islands (Indian Ocean). Spatial segregation was greater than expected, reflecting distinct seasonal differences in habitat selection and accessibility, and avoidance of intra-specific competition with local breeders. Previously failed birds segregated spatially from successful birds during summer, when they used less productive waters, suggesting a link between breeding outcome and subsequent habitat selection. In contrast, we found weak evidence of sexual segregation, which did not reflect a difference in habitat use. Our results indicate that the large-scale spatial structuring of albatross distributions results from interactions between extrinsic and intrinsic factors, with important implications for population dynamics. As habitat preferences differed substantially between colonies, populations should be considered independently when identifying critical areas for protection. PMID:27443877

  15. Proximate drivers of spatial segregation in non-breeding albatrosses.

    PubMed

    Clay, Thomas A; Manica, Andrea; Ryan, Peter G; Silk, Janet R D; Croxall, John P; Ireland, Louise; Phillips, Richard A

    2016-01-01

    Many animals partition resources to avoid competition, and in colonially-breeding species this often leads to divergent space or habitat use. During the non-breeding season, foraging constraints are relaxed, yet the patterns and drivers of segregation both between and within populations are poorly understood. We modelled habitat preference to examine how extrinsic (habitat availability and intra-specific competition) and intrinsic factors (population, sex and breeding outcome) influence the distributions of non-breeding grey-headed albatrosses Thalassarche chrysostoma tracked from two major populations, South Georgia (Atlantic Ocean) and the Prince Edward Islands (Indian Ocean). Spatial segregation was greater than expected, reflecting distinct seasonal differences in habitat selection and accessibility, and avoidance of intra-specific competition with local breeders. Previously failed birds segregated spatially from successful birds during summer, when they used less productive waters, suggesting a link between breeding outcome and subsequent habitat selection. In contrast, we found weak evidence of sexual segregation, which did not reflect a difference in habitat use. Our results indicate that the large-scale spatial structuring of albatross distributions results from interactions between extrinsic and intrinsic factors, with important implications for population dynamics. As habitat preferences differed substantially between colonies, populations should be considered independently when identifying critical areas for protection. PMID:27443877

  16. Surface Habitat Systems

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kennedy, Kriss J.

    2009-01-01

    The Surface Habitat Systems (SHS) Focused Investment Group (FIG) is part of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) Johnson Space Center (JSC) effort to provide a focused direction and funding to the various projects that are working on human surface habitat designs and technologies for the planetary exploration missions. The overall SHS-FIG effort focuses on directing and guiding those projects that: 1) develop and demonstrate new surface habitat system concepts, innovations, and technologies to support human exploration missions, 2) improve environmental systems that interact with human habitats, 3) handle and emplace human surface habitats, and 4) focus on supporting humans living and working in habitats on planetary surfaces. The activity areas of the SHS FIG described herein are focused on the surface habitat project near-term objectives as described in this document. The SHS-FIG effort focuses on mitigating surface habitat risks (as identified by the Lunar Surface Systems Project Office (LSSPO) Surface Habitat Element Team; and concentrates on developing surface habitat technologies as identified in the FY08 gap analysis. The surface habitat gap assessment will be updated annually as the surface architecture and surface habitat definition continues to mature. These technologies are mapped to the SHS-FIG Strategic Development Roadmap. The Roadmap will bring to light the areas where additional innovative efforts are needed to support the development of habitat concepts and designs and the development of new technologies to support of the LSSPO Habitation Element development plan. Three specific areas of development that address Lunar Architecture Team (LAT)-2 and Constellation Architecture Team (CxAT) Lunar habitat design issues or risks will be focused on by the SHS-FIG. The SHS-FIG will establish four areas of development that will help the projects prepare in their planning for surface habitat systems development. Those development areas are

  17. Ghosts of habitats past: Contribution of landscape change to current habitats used by shrubland birds

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Knick, Steven T.; Rotenberry, J.T.

    2000-01-01

    Models of habitat associations for species often are developed with an implicit assumption that habitats are static, even though recent disturbance may have altered the landscape. We tested our hypothesis that trajectory and magnitude of habitat change influenced observed distribution and abundance of passerine birds breeding in shrubsteppe habitats of southwestern Idaho. Birds in this region live in dynamic landscapes undergoing predominantly large-scale, radical, and unidirectional habitat change because wildfires are converting shrublands into expanses of exotic annual grasslands. We used data from field surveys and satellite image analyses in a series of redundancy analyses to partition variances and to determine the relative contribution of habitat change and current landscapes. Although current habitats explained a greater proportion of total variation, changes in habitat and measures of habitat richness and texture also contributed to variation in abundance of Horned Larks (Eremophila alpestris), Brewera??s Sparrows (Spizella breweri), and Sage Sparrows (Amphispiza belli). Abundance of birds was insensitive to scale for nonspatial habitat variables. In contrast, spatial measures of habitat richness and texture in the landscape were significant only at large spatial scales. Abundance of Horned Larks, Western Meadowlarks (Sturnella neglecta), and Brewera??s Sparrows, but not Sage Thrashers (Oreoscoptes montanus) or Sage Sparrows, was positively correlated with changes toward stable habitats. Because dominant habitat changes were toward less stable conditions, regional declines of those birds in shrubsteppe habitats reflect current landscapes as well as the history, magnitude, and trajectory of habitat change.

  18. Thermal characteristics of wild and captive Micronesian Kingfisher nesting habitats

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Kesler, Dylan C.; Haig, Susan M.

    2004-01-01

    To provide information for managing the captive population of endangered Guam Micronesian kingfishers (Halcyon cinnamomina cinnamomina), four biologically relevant thermal metrics were compared among captive facilities on the United States mainland and habitats used by wild Micronesian kingfishers on the island of Pohnpei (H. c. reichenbachii), Federated States of Micronesia. Additionally, aviaries where kingfishers laid eggs were compared to those in which birds did not attempt to breed. Compared to aviaries, habitats used by wild Pohnpei kingfishers had 3.2A?C higher daily maximum and minimum temperatures and the proportion of time when temperatures were in the birds' thermoneutral zone was 45% greater. No differences were found in the magnitude of temperature fluctuation in captive and wild environments. In captive environments in which birds bred, daily maximum temperatures were 2.1A?C higher and temperatures were within the thermoneutral zone 25% more often than in the aviaries where the kingfishers did not breed. No differences were found in the magnitude of temperature fluctuation or the daily minimum temperature. Results suggest that the thermal environment has the potential to influence reproduction, and that consideration should be given to increasing temperatures in captive breeding facilities to improve propagation of the endangered Micronesian kingfisher.

  19. 78 FR 45494 - Plant Breeding Listening Session meeting

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2013-07-29

    ... breeding and cultivar development stakeholders. DATES: The Plant Breeding Listening Session will be held... discuss their plant breeding and cultivar development programs and/or their perception of needs and potential improvements in publicly-funded plant breeding and cultivar development research. Following...

  20. Breeding System of Ruellia succulenta Small (Acanthaceae)

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    This study examines the breeding system of Ruellia succulenta (Acanthaceae), an herbaceous perennial found in the pine rockland habitat of southern Florida. Hand pollination treatments were performed on 75 plants, 25 from each of three sites. Treatments applied to test plants included: 1) control ...

  1. Using Net Energy Intake models to predict and evaluate the benefits of stream restoration to improve juvenile steelhead (Oncorhynchus mykiss) habitat

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bouwes, N.; Wall, C. E.; Wheaton, J. M.; Bennett, S.; Jordan, C.

    2013-12-01

    Stream restoration is often targeted to improve fish habitat. However, predictions or evaluations of habitat or fish population responses to these actions are rarely assessed or more often assumed. Model predictions that describe both physical and biological effects from different types of restorations can help test hypotheses to improve our understanding of fish habitat requirements, especially if restoration is treated as an experiment. In addition, models can help synthesize data to determine project effectiveness to link fish responses to physical habitat responses, promoting a mechanistic understanding that is transferrable to other systems. We are applying a mechanistic model to estimate net energy intake (NEI) potential for juvenile steelhead throughout a stream reach. NEI modeling approaches attempt to describe the quantity of food a fish can ingest at a particular site (as a function of food availability, temperature, and fish size) and the energetic costs of living there (as a function of flow patterns, temperature, and fish size). The collection of NEI estimates can be used to help understand the site's overall energetic profitability for fish and to generate an estimate of carrying capacity. We collected topographic information to create digital elevation models (DEMs) of a stream channel along with drifting invertebrates, temperature, discharge, and substrate type, before and after the addition of large wood in the Asotin watershed. This information was used to create hydraulic models to estimate water velocities and flow direction which were then used to predict delivery rates of drift, swimming costs to fish, and ultimately NEI potential throughout the reach. The model was used to predict restoration benefits based on expected geomorphic responses to large wood. In addition, the model was used to translate modest observed changes in topography from the restoration to increases in NEI and carrying capacity of the stream reach. We believe the NEI

  2. Effects of vegetation manipulation on breeding waterfowl in prairie wetlands--a literature review

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Kantrud, H.A.

    1986-01-01

    Literature on the effects of fire and grazing on the wetlands used by breeding prairie waterfowl is reviewed. Both dabbling and diving ducks and their broods prefer wetlands with openings in the marsh canopy. Decreased use is commonly associated with decreased habitat heterogeneity caused by tall, robust hydrophytes such as Typha spp. and other species adapted to form monotypes in the absence of disturbance. Nearly all previous studies indicate that reductions in height and density of tall, emergent hydrophytes by fire and grazing (unless very intensive) generally benefit breeding waterfowl. Such benefits are an increase in pair density, probably related to increased interspersion of cover and open water which decreases visibility among conspecific pairs, and improvements in their invertebrate food resources that result from increased habitat heterogeneity. Research needs are great because of the drastic changes that have accrued to prairie wetlands through fire suppression, cultivation, and other factors. The physical and biological environments preferred by species of breeding waterfowl during their seasonal and daily activities should be ascertained from future studies in wetland complexes that exist in the highest state of natural preservation. Long-term burning and grazing experiments should follow on specific vegetatively-degraded wetlands judged to be potentially important breeding areas. Seasonality, frequency, and intensity of treatments should be varied and combined and, in addition to measuring the response of the biotic community, the changes in the physical and chemical environment of the wetlands should be monitored to increase our knowledge of causative factors and possible predictive values.

  3. Natural Propagation and Habitat Improvement, Volume 1, Oregon, Supplement B, White River Falls Fish Passage, 1983 Annual Report.

    SciTech Connect

    United States. Bonneville Power Administration.

    1984-04-01

    White River Falls are located in north central Oregon approximately 25 miles south of the City of The Dalles. The project site is characterized by a series of three natural waterfalls with a combined fall of 180 ft. In the watershed above the falls are some 120 miles of mainstem habitat and an undetermined amount of tributary stream habitat that could be opened to anadromous fish, if passage is provided around the falls. The purpose of this project is to determine feasibility of passage, select a passage scheme, and design and construct passage facilities. This report provides information on possible facilities that would pass adult anadromous fish over the White River Falls. 25 references, 29 figures, 12 tables. (ACR)

  4. Emperor penguins breeding on iceshelves.

    PubMed

    Fretwell, Peter T; Trathan, Phil N; Wienecke, Barbara; Kooyman, Gerald L

    2014-01-01

    We describe a new breeding behaviour discovered in emperor penguins; utilizing satellite and aerial-survey observations four emperor penguin breeding colonies have been recorded as existing on ice-shelves. Emperors have previously been considered as a sea-ice obligate species, with 44 of the 46 colonies located on sea-ice (the other two small colonies are on land). Of the colonies found on ice-shelves, two are newly discovered, and these have been recorded on shelves every season that they have been observed, the other two have been recorded both on ice-shelves and sea-ice in different breeding seasons. We conduct two analyses; the first using synthetic aperture radar data to assess why the largest of the four colonies, for which we have most data, locates sometimes on the shelf and sometimes on the sea-ice, and find that in years where the sea-ice forms late, the colony relocates onto the ice-shelf. The second analysis uses a number of environmental variables to test the habitat marginality of all emperor penguin breeding sites. We find that three of the four colonies reported in this study are in the most northerly, warmest conditions where sea-ice is often sub-optimal. The emperor penguin's reliance on sea-ice as a breeding platform coupled with recent concerns over changed sea-ice patterns consequent on regional warming, has led to their designation as "near threatened" in the IUCN red list. Current climate models predict that future loss of sea-ice around the Antarctic coastline will negatively impact emperor numbers; recent estimates suggest a halving of the population by 2052. The discovery of this new breeding behaviour at marginal sites could mitigate some of the consequences of sea-ice loss; potential benefits and whether these are permanent or temporary need to be considered and understood before further attempts are made to predict the population trajectory of this iconic species. PMID:24416381

  5. Habitat automation

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Swab, Rodney E.

    1992-01-01

    A habitat, on either the surface of the Moon or Mars, will be designed and built with the proven technologies of that day. These technologies will be mature and readily available to the habitat designer. We believe an acceleration of the normal pace of automation would allow a habitat to be safer and more easily maintained than would be the case otherwise. This document examines the operation of a habitat and describes elements of that operation which may benefit from an increased use of automation. Research topics within the automation realm are then defined and discussed with respect to the role they can have in the design of the habitat. Problems associated with the integration of advanced technologies into real-world projects at NASA are also addressed.

  6. Large forest patches promote breeding success of a terrestrial mammal in urban landscapes.

    PubMed

    Soga, Masashi; Koike, Shinsuke

    2013-01-01

    Despite a marked increase in the focus toward biodiversity conservation in fragmented landscapes, studies that confirm species breeding success are scarce and limited. In this paper, we asked whether local (area of forest patches) and landscape (amount of suitable habitat surrounding of focal patches) factors affect the breeding success of raccoon dogs (Nyctereutes procyonoides) in Tokyo, Central Japan. The breeding success of raccoon dogs is easy to judge as adults travel with pups during the breeding season. We selected 21 forest patches (3.3-797.8 ha) as study sites. In each forest patch, we used infra-red-triggered cameras for a total of 60 camera days per site. We inspected each photo to determine whether it was of an adult or a pup. Although we found adult raccoon dogs in all 21 forest patches, pups were found only in 13 patches. To estimate probability of occurrence and detection for raccoon in 21 forest fragments, we used single season site occupancy models in PRESENCE program. Model selection based on AIC and model averaging showed that the occupancy probability of pups was positively affected by patch area. This result suggests that large forests improve breeding success of raccoon dogs. A major reason for the low habitat value of small, isolated patches may be the low availability of food sources and the high risk of being killed on the roads in such areas. Understanding the effects of local and landscape parameters on species breeding success may help us to devise and implement effective long-term conservation and management plans. PMID:23300951

  7. Large Forest Patches Promote Breeding Success of a Terrestrial Mammal in Urban Landscapes

    PubMed Central

    Soga, Masashi; Koike, Shinsuke

    2013-01-01

    Despite a marked increase in the focus toward biodiversity conservation in fragmented landscapes, studies that confirm species breeding success are scarce and limited. In this paper, we asked whether local (area of forest patches) and landscape (amount of suitable habitat surrounding of focal patches) factors affect the breeding success of raccoon dogs (Nyctereutes procyonoides) in Tokyo, Central Japan. The breeding success of raccoon dogs is easy to judge as adults travel with pups during the breeding season. We selected 21 forest patches (3.3–797.8 ha) as study sites. In each forest patch, we used infra-red-triggered cameras for a total of 60 camera days per site. We inspected each photo to determine whether it was of an adult or a pup. Although we found adult raccoon dogs in all 21 forest patches, pups were found only in 13 patches. To estimate probability of occurrence and detection for raccoon in 21 forest fragments, we used single season site occupancy models in PRESENCE program. Model selection based on AIC and model averaging showed that the occupancy probability of pups was positively affected by patch area. This result suggests that large forests improve breeding success of raccoon dogs. A major reason for the low habitat value of small, isolated patches may be the low availability of food sources and the high risk of being killed on the roads in such areas. Understanding the effects of local and landscape parameters on species breeding success may help us to devise and implement effective long-term conservation and management plans. PMID:23300951

  8. Molecular Breeding to Improve Salt Tolerance of Rice (Oryza sativa L.) in the Red River Delta of Vietnam

    PubMed Central

    Linh, Le Hung; Linh, Ta Hong; Xuan, Tran Dang; Ham, Le Huy; Ismail, Abdelbagi M.; Khanh, Tran Dang

    2012-01-01

    Rice is a stable food in Vietnam and plays a key role in the economy of the country. However, the production and the cultivating areas are adversely affected from the threats of devastation caused by the rise of sea level. Using marker-assisted backcrossing (MABC) to develop a new salt tolerance rice cultivar is one of the feasible methods to cope with these devastating changes. To improve rice salt tolerance in BT7 cultivar, FL478 was used as a donor parent to introgress the Saltol QTL conferring salt tolerance into BT7. Three backcrosses were conducted and successfully transferred positive alleles of Saltol from FL478 into BT7. The plants numbers IL-30 and IL-32 in BC3F1 population expected recurrent genome recovery of up to 99.2% and 100%, respectively. These selected lines that carried the Saltol alleles were screened in field for their agronomic traits. All improved lines had Saltol allele similar to the donor parent FL478, whereas their agronomic performances were the same as the original BT7. We show here the success of improving rice salt tolerance by MABC and the high efficiency of selection in early generations. In the present study, MABC has accelerated the development of superior qualities in the genetic background of BT7. PMID:23326259

  9. Breeding season survival and breeding incidence of female Mottled Ducks on the upper Texas gulf coast

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Rigby, Elizabeth A.; Haukos, David A.

    2012-01-01

    Previous Mottled Duck (Anas fulvigula) studies suggested that high female breeding season survival may be caused by low nesting effort, but few breeding season estimates of survival associated with nesting effort exist on the western Gulf Coast. Here, breeding season survival (N = 40) and breeding incidence (N = 39) were estimated for female Mottled Ducks on the upper Texas coast, 2006–2008. Females were fitted with backpack radio transmitters and visually relocated every 3–4 days. Weekly survival was estimated using the Known Fate procedure of program MARK with breeding incidence estimated as the annual proportion of females observed nesting or with broods. The top-ranked survival model included a body mass covariate and held weekly female survival constant across weeks and years (SW = 0.986, SE = 0.006). When compared to survival across the entire year estimated from previous band recovery and age ratio analysis, survival rate during the breeding season did not differ. Breeding incidence was well below 100% in all years and highly variable among years (15%–63%). Breeding season survival and breeding incidence were similar to estimates obtained with implant transmitters from the mid-coast of Texas. The greatest breeding incidence for both studies occurred when drought indices indicated average environmental moisture during the breeding season. The observed combination of low breeding incidence and high breeding season survival support the hypothesis of a trade-off between the ecological cost of nesting effort and survival for Mottled Duck females. Habitat cues that trigger nesting are unknown and should be investigated.

  10. Considering Spatial Scale and Reproductive Consequences of Habitat Selection when Managing Grasslands for a Threatened Species

    PubMed Central

    Pearson, Scott F.; Knapp, Shannon M.

    2016-01-01

    Habitat selection that has fitness consequences has important implications for conservation activities. For example, habitat characteristics that influence nest success in birds can be manipulated to improve habitat quality with the goal of ultimately improving reproductive success. We examined habitat selection by the threatened streaked horned lark (Eremophila alpestris strigata) at both the breeding-site (territory) and nest-site scales. Larks were selective at both spatial scales but with contrasting selection. At the territory scale, male larks selected sparsely vegetated grasslands with relatively short vegetation. At the nest-site scale, female larks selected sites within territories with higher vegetation density and more perennial forbs. These nest-site scale choices had reproductive consequences, with greater nest success in areas with higher densities of perennial forbs. We experimentally manipulated lark habitat structure in an attempt to mimic the habitat conditions selected by larks by using late summer prescribed fires. After the burn, changes in vegetation structure were in the direction preferred by larks but habitat effects attenuated by the following year. Our results highlight the importance of evaluating habitat selection at spatial scales appropriate to the species of interest, especially when attempting to improve habitat quality for rare and declining species. They also highlight the importance of conducting restoration activities in a research context. For example, because the sparsely vegetated conditions created by fire attenuate, there may be value in examining more frequent burns or hotter fires as the next management and research action. We hope the design outlined in this study will serve as an integrated research and management example for conserving grassland birds generally. PMID:27322196

  11. Considering Spatial Scale and Reproductive Consequences of Habitat Selection when Managing Grasslands for a Threatened Species.

    PubMed

    Pearson, Scott F; Knapp, Shannon M

    2016-01-01

    Habitat selection that has fitness consequences has important implications for conservation activities. For example, habitat characteristics that influence nest success in birds can be manipulated to improve habitat quality with the goal of ultimately improving reproductive success. We examined habitat selection by the threatened streaked horned lark (Eremophila alpestris strigata) at both the breeding-site (territory) and nest-site scales. Larks were selective at both spatial scales but with contrasting selection. At the territory scale, male larks selected sparsely vegetated grasslands with relatively short vegetation. At the nest-site scale, female larks selected sites within territories with higher vegetation density and more perennial forbs. These nest-site scale choices had reproductive consequences, with greater nest success in areas with higher densities of perennial forbs. We experimentally manipulated lark habitat structure in an attempt to mimic the habitat conditions selected by larks by using late summer prescribed fires. After the burn, changes in vegetation structure were in the direction preferred by larks but habitat effects attenuated by the following year. Our results highlight the importance of evaluating habitat selection at spatial scales appropriate to the species of interest, especially when attempting to improve habitat quality for rare and declining species. They also highlight the importance of conducting restoration activities in a research context. For example, because the sparsely vegetated conditions created by fire attenuate, there may be value in examining more frequent burns or hotter fires as the next management and research action. We hope the design outlined in this study will serve as an integrated research and management example for conserving grassland birds generally. PMID:27322196

  12. Aloe vera bathing improved physical and humoral protection in breeding stock after induced spawning in matrinxã (Brycon amazonicus).

    PubMed

    Zanuzzo, Fábio S; Zaiden, Sérgio F; Senhorini, José A; Marzocchi-Machado, Cleni M; Urbinati, Elisabeth C

    2015-07-01

    In this study, we show that induced spawning causes stress, an intense loss of epithelia and immunosuppression, decreasing physical and humoral protection in fish, effects that were prevented or improved in fish bathed with Aloe vera. A. vera has several medicinal properties, including wound healing and immunostimulatory effects, which we observed in this study. Fish bathed with A. vera had a higher number of epidermal goblet cells and, in general, an improved wound healing rate compared with the control after induced spawning. These effects might be related to (1) the stimulation of leukocyte activity, represented here by the increased leukocyte respiratory activity triggered by A. vera (leukocytes are recognized as playing an important role in wound repair); (2) the antimicrobial properties of A. vera, which decrease wound infection and accelerate the healing process; and (3) several mechanisms that explain the healing effect of A. vera (increased collagen synthesis, rate of epithelialization, and anti-inflammatory and moisturizing effects). Our results also suggest that caution is necessary during the induced spawning process, especially during stripping, and A. vera bathing is recommended after intensive aquaculture operations. PMID:25703714

  13. Southwestern Willow Flycatcher Breeding Site and Territory Summary - 2006

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Durst, Scott L.; Sogge, Mark K.; Stump, Shay D.; Williams, Sartor O.; Kus, Barbara E.; Sferra, Susan J.

    2007-01-01

    Introduction The Southwestern Willow Flycatcher (Empidonax traillii extimus) is an endangered bird that breeds only in dense riparian habitats in six southwestern states (southern California, extreme southern Nevada, southern Utah, southwestern Colorado, Arizona, and New Mexico). Since 1993, hundreds of Southwestern Willow Flycatcher surveys have been conducted each year, and many new flycatcher breeding sites located. This document synthesizes information on all known Southwestern Willow Flycatcher breeding sites. This rangewide data synthesis was designed to meet these objectives: * identify all known Southwestern Willow Flycatcher breeding sites, and * assemble data on population size, location, habitat, and other information for all breeding sites, for as many years as possible, from 1993 through 2006. This report provides data summaries in terms of the number of flycatcher sites and the number of territories.

  14. Improving salt tolerance of lowland rice cultivar 'Rassi' through marker-aided backcross breeding in West Africa.

    PubMed

    Bimpong, Isaac Kofi; Manneh, Baboucarr; Sock, Mamadou; Diaw, Faty; Amoah, Nana Kofi Abaka; Ismail, Abdelbagi M; Gregorio, Glenn; Singh, Rakesh Kumar; Wopereis, Marco

    2016-01-01

    Salt stress affects about 25% of the 4.4 million ha of irrigated and lowland systems for rice cultivation in West Africa (WA). A major quantitative trait locus (QTLs) on chromosome 1 (Saltol) that enhances tolerance to salt stress at the vegetative stage has enabled the use of marker-assisted selection (MAS) to develop salt-tolerant rice cultivar(s) in WA. We used 3 cycles of backcrossing with selection based on DNA markers and field-testing using 'FL478' as tolerant donor and the widely grown 'Rassi' as recurrent parent. In the BC3F2 stage, salt-tolerant lines with over 80% Rassi alleles except in the region around Saltol segment were selected. 429 introgression lines (Saltol-ILs) were identified as tolerant at vegetative stage, of which 116 were field-tested for four seasons at the reproductive stage. Sixteen Saltol-ILs had less yield loss (3-26% relative to control trials), and 8 Saltol-ILs showed high yield potential under stress and non-stress conditions. The 16 Saltol-ILs had been included for further African-wide testing prior to release in 6 WA countries. MAS reduced the time for germplasm improvement from at least 7 to about 4 years. Our objective is to combine different genes/QTLs conferring tolerance to stresses under one genetic background using MAS. PMID:26566846

  15. Advantages and Risks of Husbandry and Housing Changes to Improve Animal Wellbeing in a Breeding Colony of Common Marmosets (Callithrix jacchus)

    PubMed Central

    Bakker, Jaco; Ouwerling, Boudewijn; Heidt, Peter J; Kondova, Ivanela; Langermans, Jan AM

    2015-01-01

    Between 1975 and 2014, housing conditions for laboratory-housed marmosets changed dramatically after the introduction of new guidelines designed to improve their care and wellbeing. According to these guidelines, our facility provided marmosets with outside enclosures, switched to deep litter as bedding material, and discontinued the use of disinfectant agents in animal enclosures. However, both deep litter and access to outside enclosures hypothetically increase the risk of potential exposure to pathogenic microorganisms. We evaluated whether these housing and husbandry modifications constituted an increased veterinary risk for laboratory-housed common marmosets (Callithrix jacchus). After the animals had been exposed to these new housing conditions for 2.5 y, we examined their intestinal bacterial flora and feces, the deep litter, and insects present in the housing. In addition, we assessed the marmosets’ general health and the effect of outdoor housing on, for example, vitamin D levels. Although numerous bacterial strains—from nonpathogenic to potentially pathogenic—were cultured, we noted no increase in illness, mortality, or breeding problems related to this environmental microflora. Housing laboratory marmosets in large enriched cages, with both indoor and outdoor enclosures, providing them with deep litter, and eliminating the use of disinfectants present an increased veterinary risk. However, after evaluating all of the collected data, we estimate that the veterinary risk of the new housing conditions is minimal to none in terms of clinical disease, disease outbreaks, abnormal behavior, and negative effects on reproduction. PMID:26045452

  16. Productive responses of breeding Cashmere goats and their kids to different stocking rates on improved upland pastures.

    PubMed

    Celaya, R; Moreno-Gonzalo, J; López López, C; Ferreira, L M M; García, U; Ferre, I; Osoro, K

    2016-03-01

    Although goat meat production could be an option for diversification in improved upland pastures in northern Spain, precise information on the optimal grazing management to enhance goat performance and maximize production per unit land area is lacking. The objective of this study was to compare the effects of 3 stocking rates, high stocking rate (HSR; 20 goats/ha), medium stocking rate (MSR; 15 goats/ha), and low stocking rate (LSR; 10 goats/ha), on gastrointestinal (GI) nematode infections and productive responses of Cashmere goats grazing such pastures. Treatments were replicated twice on 6 paddocks sown with and and with a high presence of the native grass . The experiment lasted 3 grazing seasons (from spring to autumn). Pastures were sampled for sward height and botanical and proximate composition. Body weight and BCS changes of goats were monitored and GI nematode infections were assessed by fecal egg counts (FEC). The established treatments resulted in lower mean sward height in the HSR than in the MSR and LSR (9.6, 11.5, and 14.4 cm, respectively; < 0.001). Pasture botanical composition and nutritive quality did not differ between treatments. The mean FEC of does across the 3 grazing seasons were greater ( < 0.05) in the HSR than in the LSR. spp., , and were the most prevalent nematode species identified in coprocultures. Does showed more favorable ( < 0.001) BW and BCS changes in the LSR than in the MSR and HSR (-14, -30, and -52 g/d and -0.1, -0.3, and -0.7 BCS units [scale 1 to 5], respectively). Greater ( < 0.001) kids' BW gains were observed in the LSR and MSR (average 94 g/d) compared with the HSR (70 g/d). Inversely, kid output per unit land area was greater in the HSR than in the MSR and LSR (320, 258, and 192 kg∙ha∙yr, respectively; < 0.001), whereas daily kids' BW gains per hectare were greater ( < 0.001) in the HSR and MSR (average 1.37 kg∙d∙ha) compared with the LSR (0.98 kg∙d∙ha). A medium stocking rate of 15 goats/ha could

  17. Larval habitat of Anopheles philippinensis: a vector of malaria in Bangladesh.

    PubMed Central

    Elias, M.

    1996-01-01

    This article reviews the various types of larval habitat of the malaria vector Anopheles philippinensis Ludlow in Bangladesh and characterizes its breeding ecology. Discussed also are the possible implications of the environmental changes on its breeding habitats resulting from intensified land use brought about by population increase and developments in irrigation and water resources. PMID:8823969

  18. Statistical integration of tracking and vessel survey data to incorporate life history differences in habitat models.

    PubMed

    Yamamoto, Takashi; Watanuki, Yutaka; Hazen, Elliott L; Nishizawa, Bungo; Sasaki, Hiroko; Takahashi, Akinori

    2015-12-01

    Habitat use is often examined at a species or population level, but patterns likely differ within a species, as a function of the sex, breeding colony, and current breeding status of individuals. Hence, within-species differences should be considered in habitat models when analyzing and predicting species distributions, such as predicted responses to expected climate change scenarios. Also, species' distribution data obtained by different methods (vessel-survey and individual tracking) are often analyzed separately rather than integrated to improve predictions. Here, we eventually fit generalized additive models for Streaked Shearwaters Calonectris leuconelas using tracking data from two different breeding colonies in the Northwestern Pacific and visual observer data collected during a research cruise off the coast of western Japan. The tracking-based models showed differences among patterns of relative density distribution as a function of life history category (colony, sex, and breeding conditions). The integrated tracking-based and vessel-based bird count model incorporated ecological states rather than predicting a single surface for the entire species. This study highlights both the importance of including ecological and life history data and integrating multiple data types (tag-based tracking and vessel count) when examining species-environment relationships, ultimately advancing the capabilities of species distribution models. PMID:26910963

  19. Understanding the Habitat Needs of the Declining Western Yellow-Billed Cuckoo

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Johnson, Matthew J.

    2009-01-01

    The western yellow-billed cuckoo, once common along the streams and rivers of the American West, is now a candidate for protection under the Endangered Species Act. Most of the remaining breeding pairs are found in Arizona, California, and New Mexico. Research to understand the cuckoos' habitat needs by U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) and Northern Arizona University scientists has shown that cuckoos in Arizona prefer breeding habitat dominated by native tree species, especially cottonwood-willow habitat bordered by mesquite bosque habitat. This research also revealed that the size of habitat patches matters - breeding cuckoos were found only in large, continuous areas of riparian habitat. These findings and the development of spatially explicit habitat models by USGS scientists will help resource managers conserve and manage riparian habitats needed to ensure the survival of the western yellow-billed cuckoo.

  20. Habitat manipulation influences northern bobwhite resource selection on a reclaimed surface mine

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Brooke, Jarred M.; Peters, David C.; Unger, Ashley M.; Tanner, Evan P.; Harper, Craig A.; Keyser, Patrick D.; Clark, Joseph D.; Morgan, John J.

    2015-01-01

    lacked cover during the non-breeding season. Individuals also selected areas treated with herbicide to control sericea lespedeza (Lespedeza cuneata) throughout the year. During the breeding season, bobwhites avoided areas burned during the previous dormant season. Habitat quality of reclaimed mine lands may be limited by a lack of shrub cover and extensive coverage of non-native herbaceous vegetation. Managers aiming to increase bobwhite abundance should focus on increasing interspersion of shrub cover, with no area >100 m from shrub cover. We suggest disking and herbicide application to control invasive species and improve the structure and composition of vegetation for bobwhites.

  1. Habitat availability is a more plausible explanation than insecticide acute toxicity for U.S. grassland bird species declines

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Grassland bird species have experienced substantial declines in North America. These declines have been largely attributed to habitat loss and degradation, especially from agricultural practices and intensification (the habitat-availability hypothesis). A recent analysis of North American Breeding B...

  2. [Progress and countermeasures of Dendrobium officinale breeding].

    PubMed

    Si, Jin-Ping; He, Bo-wei; Yu, Qiao-xian

    2013-02-01

    The standandized cultivation of Chinese medicinal materials is based on variety. With the rapid development of Dendrobium officinale industry and increasing demand of improved varieties, many studies have concentrated on the variety breeding of D. officinale and subsequently achieved remarkable success. This paper systematically expounds the research progress of D. officinale breeding, e. g. the collection and differentiated evaluation for germplasm, theory and practice for variety breeding, tissue culture and efficient production with low-carbon for germchit, and DNA molecular marker-assisted breeding, and then indicates the main problems of the current breeding of D. officinale. Furthermore, the priorities and keys for the further breeding of D. officinale have been pointed out. PMID:23713267

  3. What breeds make up the national herd?

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Changes in the procedures and database at the Animal Improvement Programs Laboratory have resulted in the ability to know which breeds contribute to each cow and in what proportion. Previously each animal was considered to be the single breed reported through the dairy industry; therefore, statistic...

  4. Grasses and Legumes: Genetics and Plant Breeding

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Humans have been breeding forage and turf species for over 100 years. This chapter explores the progress that has been made in improving grasses and legumes for human benefit and the evolution of breeding and selection systems that have brought about those changes....

  5. Breeding commercial sugarcane varieties for the industry

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Recent literature suggests that sugarcane breeding in the United States has reached a sugar yield plateau. If so, this could have huge implications for the future of the industry and breeding per se because yield improvement might have to be achieved through secondary, non-sugar-related traits, or t...

  6. Habitat selection and management of the Hawaiian crow

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Giffen, J.G.; Scott, J.M.; Mountainspring, S.

    1987-01-01

    The abundance and range of the Hawaiian crow, or alala, (Corvus hawaiiensis) have decreased drastically since the 1890's. Fewer than 10 breeding pairs remained in the wild in 1985. A sample of 82 nests during 1970-82 were used to determine habitat associations. Two hundred firty-nine alala observations were used to estimate densities occurring in different vegetation types in 1978. Compared to available habitat, more nests and higher bird densities during the breeding season occurred in areas where: (1) canopy cover was > 60%; (2) koa (Acacia koa) and ohia (Metrosideros polymorpha) were dominant species in the crown layer; (3) native plants constituted > 75% of the understory cover; and (4) the elevation was 1,100-1,500 m. Compared to breeding habitat, nonbreeding habitat tended to lie at lower elevations and in wetter forests having the crown layer dominated by ohia but lacking koa. Habitat loss is a major factor underlying the decline of this species although predation on fledgings, avian disease, and shooting also have reduced the population. Remaining key habitat areas have little or no legal protection through zoning and land ownership. Preserves should be established to encompass the location of existing pairs and to assure the provision of optimum breeding habitat and suitable nonbreeding habitat.

  7. Improving classification accuracy using multi-date IRS/LISS data and development of thermal stress index for Asiatic lion habitat

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gupta, Rajendra Kumar

    The increase in lion and leopard population in the GIR wild life sanctuary and National Park (Gir Protected Area) demands periodic and precision monitoring of habitat at close intervals using space based remote sensing data. Besides characterizing the different forest classes, remote sensing needs to support for the assessment of thermal stress zones and identification of possible corridors for lion dispersion to new home ranges. The study focuses on assessing the thematic forest classification accuracies in percentage terms(CA) attainable using single date post-monsoon (CA=60, kappa = 0.514) as well as leaf shedding (CA=48.4, kappa = 0.372) season data in visible and Near-IR spectral bands of IRS/LISS-III at 23.5 m spatial resolution; and improvement of CA by using joint two date (multi-temporal) data sets (CA=87.2, kappa = 0.843) in the classification. The 188 m spatial resolution IRS/WiFS and 23.5 m spatial resolution LISS-III data were used to study the possible corridors for dispersion of Lions from GIR protected areas (PA). A relative thermal stress index (RTSI) for Gir PA has been developed using NOAA/ AVHRR data sets of post-monsoon, leaf shedded and summer seasons. The paper discusses the role of RTSI as a tool to work out forest management plans using leaf shedded season data to combat the thermal stress in the habitat, by identifying locations for artificial water holes during the ensuing summer season.

  8. Long-term effect of instream habitat-improvement structures on channel morphology along the Blackledge and Salmon rivers, Connecticut, USA.

    PubMed

    Thompson, Douglas M

    2002-02-01

    Habitat-improvement structures on the Blackledge and Salmon rivers date back to the 1930s and 1950s. Forty of these structures were investigated to determine their long-term impact on channel morphology. These structures include designs that continue to be used in modern restoration efforts. During the intervening period since these structures were introduced, several major floods have affected the two channels. The floods include three flows in excess of the 50-year event, including the flood of record, which has an estimated recurrence interval of almost 300 years. Despite the extreme flooding, many structures were discovered in varying conditions of operation. Grade-control structures and low-flow deflectors generally create some low-flow habitat (P = 0.815) but do not produce the depth of water predicted by design manuals (P < 0.0001). Unintended erosion has developed in response to many of the channel modifications especially along the outside of meanders. In addition, the mode of failure of grade-control structures has created localized channel widening with associated bank erosion. Meanwhile, cover structures have produced a 30% reduction in streamside vegetation with over 75% less overhead cover than unaltered reaches. Based on these results, it is important for prospective designers to carefully consider the long-term impacts of instream structures when developing future channel-restoration projects. PMID:11815827

  9. Aedes aegypti (L.) and Aedes albopictus (Skuse) in Singapore City. 2. Larval habitats.

    PubMed

    Chan, K L; Ho, B C; Chan, Y C

    1971-01-01

    Detailed information on the breeding habitats of Ae. aegypti and Ae. albopictus is necessary when planning programmes for their control. The larval habitats of the two species in 10 city areas were counted and classified according to type, frequency of occurrence, location, and function. Of all the breeding habitats recorded 95% were domestic containers. The most common Ae. aegypti breeding habitats were ant traps, earthenware jars, bowls, tanks, tin cans, and drums, ant traps being the most common indoors and earthenware jars the most common out doors. Breeding habitats for Ae. albopictus were commonly found in earthen ware jars, tin cans, ant traps, rubber tires, bowls, and drums; ant traps were the most common indoor habitat and tin cans were most common outdoors.The majority of Ae. aegypti breeding habitats were found indoors, while only half of all the Ae. albopictus breeding habitats were indoors. The indoor and outdoor distribution of breeding habitats of both species was not related to the type of housing in the area.The distribution of the type of breeding habitats, however, was related to the type of housing in the area. Ant traps were common to all areas, but water-storage containers and unused containers were common in slum-house and shop-house areas. Flats, however, had more containers used for keeping plants and flowers.The most common breeding habitats of Ae. aegypti and Ae. albopictus are discussed in relation to the habits of the people. It is concluded that control of the two species will depend largely on a change in such habits, either through public health education or by some form of law enforcement. PMID:5316746

  10. USDA lettuce breeding and genetics

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The lettuce industry of California requires continued development of improved, adapted cultivars to meet new disease and insect problems, changes in the market, and changes in growing procedures. The USDA lettuce breeding and genetics project aims to incorporate valuable traits into crisphead, mixed...

  11. WILDLIFE HABITAT

    EPA Science Inventory

    Habitat change statistics were used to estimate the effects of alternative future scenarios for agriculture on non-fish vertebrate diversity in Iowa farmlands. Study areas were two watersheds in central Iowa of about 50 and 90 square kilometers, respectively. Future scenarios w...

  12. Improvement of Anadromous Fish Habitat and Passage in Omak Creek, 2008 Annual Report : February 1, 2008 to January 31, 2009.

    SciTech Connect

    Dasher, Rhonda; Fisher, Christopher

    2009-06-09

    During the 2008 season, projects completed under BPA project 2000-100-00 included installation of riparian fencing, maintenance of existing riparian fencing, monitoring of at-risk culverts and installation of riparian vegetation along impacted sections of Omak Creek. Redd and snorkel surveys were conducted in Omak Creek to determine steelhead production. Canopy closure surveys were conducted to monitor riparian vegetation recovery after exclusion of cattle since 2000 from a study area commonly known as the Moomaw property. Additional redd and fry surveys were conducted above Mission Falls and in the lower portion of Stapaloop Creek to try and determine whether there has been successful passage at Mission Falls. Monitoring adult steelhead trying to navigate the falls resulted in the discovery of shallow pool depth at an upper pool that is preventing many fish from successfully navigating the entire falls. The Omak Creek Habitat and Passage Project has worked with NRCS to obtain additional funds to implement projects in 2009 that will address passage at Mission Falls, culvert replacement, as well as additional riparian planting. The Omak Creek Technical Advisory Group (TAG) is currently revising the Omak Creek Watershed Assessment. In addition, the group is revising strategy to focus efforts in targeted areas to provide a greater positive impact within the watershed. In 2008 the NRCS Riparian Technical Team was supposed to assess areas within the watershed that have unique problems and require special treatments to successfully resolve the issues involved. The technical team will be scheduled for 2009 to assist the TAG in developing strategies for these special areas.

  13. Development and application of biological technologies in fish genetic breeding.

    PubMed

    Xu, Kang; Duan, Wei; Xiao, Jun; Tao, Min; Zhang, Chun; Liu, Yun; Liu, ShaoJun

    2015-02-01

    Fish genetic breeding is a process that remolds heritable traits to obtain neotype and improved varieties. For the purpose of genetic improvement, researchers can select for desirable genetic traits, integrate a suite of traits from different donors, or alter the innate genetic traits of a species. These improved varieties have, in many cases, facilitated the development of the aquaculture industry by lowering costs and increasing both quality and yield. In this review, we present the pertinent literatures and summarize the biological bases and application of selection breeding technologies (containing traditional selective breeding, molecular marker-assisted breeding, genome-wide selective breeding and breeding by controlling single-sex groups), integration breeding technologies (containing cross breeding, nuclear transplantation, germline stem cells and germ cells transplantation, artificial gynogenesis, artificial androgenesis and polyploid breeding) and modification breeding technologies (represented by transgenic breeding) in fish genetic breeding. Additionally, we discuss the progress our laboratory has made in the field of chromosomal ploidy breeding of fish, including distant hybridization, gynogenesis, and androgenesis. Finally, we systematically summarize the research status and known problems associated with each technology. PMID:25595050

  14. Mine-drainage treatment wetland as habitat for herptofaunal wildlife

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lacki, Michael J.; Hummer, Joseph W.; Webster, Harold J.

    1992-07-01

    Land reclamation techniques that incorporate habitat features for herptofaunal wildlife have received little attention. We assessed the suitability of a wetland, constructed for the treatment of mine-water drainage, for supporting herptofaunal wildlife from 1988 through 1990 using diurnal and nocturnal surveys. Natural wetlands within the surrounding watershed were also monitored for comparison. The treatment wetland supported the greatest abundance and species richness of herptofauna among the sites surveyed. Abundance was a function of the frog density, particularly green frogs ( Rana clamitans) and pickerel frogs ( R. palustris), while species richness was due to the number of snake species found. The rich mix of snake species present at the treatment wetland was believed due to a combination of an abundant frog prey base and an amply supply of den sites in rock debris left behind from earlier surface-mining activities. Nocturnal surveys of breeding male frogs demonstrated highest breeding activity at the treatment wetland, particularly for spring peepers ( Hyla crucifer). Whole-body assays of green frog and bullfrog ( R. catesbeiana) tissues showed no differences among sites in uptake of iron, aluminum, and zinc; managanese levels in samples from the treatment wetland were significantly lower than those from natural wetlands. These results suggest that wetlands established for water quality improvement can provide habitat for reptiles and amphibians, with the species composition dependent on the construction design, the proximity to source populations, and the degree of acidity and heavy-metal concentrations in drainage waters.

  15. Blackberry Breeding and Genetics

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Plant Breeding Reviews has been published since the early 1980s and each edition presents a thorough review of the state of the are on breeding and genetics of specific crop plant. The extensive chapter on blackberry breeding and genetics is organized as follows: INTRODUCTION (Origin and Speciation...

  16. Chickpea Breeding and Management

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    This book presents the current status of chickpea breeding and management by experts from around the world. It thoroughly covers a wide array of subject on chickpea genetics and breeding ranging from cytogenetics, wild relatives and biodiversity, conventional and modern breeding techniques and achi...

  17. Captive breeding of pangolins: current status, problems and future prospects

    PubMed Central

    Hua, Liushuai; Gong, Shiping; Wang, Fumin; Li, Weiye; Ge, Yan; Li, Xiaonan; Hou, Fanghui

    2015-01-01

    Abstract Pangolins are unique placental mammals with eight species existing in the world, which have adapted to a highly specialized diet of ants and termites, and are of significance in the control of forest termite disaster. Besides their ecological value, pangolins are extremely important economic animals with the value as medicine and food. At present, illegal hunting and habitat destruction have drastically decreased the wild population of pangolins, pushing them to the edge of extinction. Captive breeding is an important way to protect these species, but because of pangolin’s specialized behaviors and high dependence on natural ecosystem, there still exist many technical barriers to successful captive breeding programs. In this paper, based on the literatures and our practical experience, we reviewed the status and existing problems in captive breeding of pangolins, including four aspects, the naturalistic habitat, dietary husbandry, reproduction and disease control. Some recommendations are presented for effective captive breeding and protection of pangolins. PMID:26155072

  18. Captive breeding of pangolins: current status, problems and future prospects.

    PubMed

    Hua, Liushuai; Gong, Shiping; Wang, Fumin; Li, Weiye; Ge, Yan; Li, Xiaonan; Hou, Fanghui

    2015-01-01

    Pangolins are unique placental mammals with eight species existing in the world, which have adapted to a highly specialized diet of ants and termites, and are of significance in the control of forest termite disaster. Besides their ecological value, pangolins are extremely important economic animals with the value as medicine and food. At present, illegal hunting and habitat destruction have drastically decreased the wild population of pangolins, pushing them to the edge of extinction. Captive breeding is an important way to protect these species, but because of pangolin's specialized behaviors and high dependence on natural ecosystem, there still exist many technical barriers to successful captive breeding programs. In this paper, based on the literatures and our practical experience, we reviewed the status and existing problems in captive breeding of pangolins, including four aspects, the naturalistic habitat, dietary husbandry, reproduction and disease control. Some recommendations are presented for effective captive breeding and protection of pangolins. PMID:26155072

  19. Emperor Penguins Breeding on Iceshelves

    PubMed Central

    Fretwell, Peter T.; Trathan, Phil N.; Wienecke, Barbara; Kooyman, Gerald L.

    2014-01-01

    We describe a new breeding behaviour discovered in emperor penguins; utilizing satellite and aerial-survey observations four emperor penguin breeding colonies have been recorded as existing on ice-shelves. Emperors have previously been considered as a sea-ice obligate species, with 44 of the 46 colonies located on sea-ice (the other two small colonies are on land). Of the colonies found on ice-shelves, two are newly discovered, and these have been recorded on shelves every season that they have been observed, the other two have been recorded both on ice-shelves and sea-ice in different breeding seasons. We conduct two analyses; the first using synthetic aperture radar data to assess why the largest of the four colonies, for which we have most data, locates sometimes on the shelf and sometimes on the sea-ice, and find that in years where the sea-ice forms late, the colony relocates onto the ice-shelf. The second analysis uses a number of environmental variables to test the habitat marginality of all emperor penguin breeding sites. We find that three of the four colonies reported in this study are in the most northerly, warmest conditions where sea-ice is often sub-optimal. The emperor penguin’s reliance on sea-ice as a breeding platform coupled with recent concerns over changed sea-ice patterns consequent on regional warming, has led to their designation as “near threatened” in the IUCN red list. Current climate models predict that future loss of sea-ice around the Antarctic coastline will negatively impact emperor numbers; recent estimates suggest a halving of the population by 2052. The discovery of this new breeding behaviour at marginal sites could mitigate some of the consequences of sea-ice loss; potential benefits and whether these are permanent or temporary need to be considered and understood before further attempts are made to predict the population trajectory of this iconic species. PMID:24416381

  20. Admixture and Local Breed Marginalization Threaten Algerian Sheep Diversity

    PubMed Central

    Ciani, Elena; Kdidi, Samia; Aouissat, Miloud; Dhimi, Laziz; Lafri, Mohamed; Maftah, Abderrahman; Mehtar, Nadhira

    2015-01-01

    Due to its geo-climatic conditions, Algeria represents a biodiversity hotspot, with sheep breeds well adapted to a patchwork of extremely heterogeneous harsh habitats. The importance of this peculiar genetic reservoir increases as climate change drives the demand for new adaptations. However, the expansion of a single breed (Ouled-Djellal) which occurred in the last decades has generated a critical situation for the other breeds; some of them are being subjected to uncontrolled cross-breeding with the favored breed and/or to marginalization (effective size contraction). This study investigated genetic diversity within and among six of the nine Algerian breeds, by use of 30 microsatellite markers. Our results showed that, in spite of the census contraction experienced by most of the considered breeds, genetic diversity is still substantial (average gene diversity ranging 0.68 to 0.76) and inbreeding was not identified as a problem. However, two breeds (Rembi and Taâdmit) appeared to have lost most of their genetic originality because of intensive cross-breeding with Ouled-Djellal. Based on the above evidence, we suggest Hamra, Sidaoun, and D’man as breeds deserving the highest priority for conservation in Algeria. PMID:25875832

  1. Admixture and local breed marginalization threaten Algerian sheep diversity.

    PubMed

    Gaouar, Samir Bachir Souheil; Da Silva, Anne; Ciani, Elena; Kdidi, Samia; Aouissat, Miloud; Dhimi, Laziz; Lafri, Mohamed; Maftah, Abderrahman; Mehtar, Nadhira

    2015-01-01

    Due to its geo-climatic conditions, Algeria represents a biodiversity hotspot, with sheep breeds well adapted to a patchwork of extremely heterogeneous harsh habitats. The importance of this peculiar genetic reservoir increases as climate change drives the demand for new adaptations. However, the expansion of a single breed (Ouled-Djellal) which occurred in the last decades has generated a critical situation for the other breeds; some of them are being subjected to uncontrolled cross-breeding with the favored breed and/or to marginalization (effective size contraction). This study investigated genetic diversity within and among six of the nine Algerian breeds, by use of 30 microsatellite markers. Our results showed that, in spite of the census contraction experienced by most of the considered breeds, genetic diversity is still substantial (average gene diversity ranging 0.68 to 0.76) and inbreeding was not identified as a problem. However, two breeds (Rembi and Taâdmit) appeared to have lost most of their genetic originality because of intensive cross-breeding with Ouled-Djellal. Based on the above evidence, we suggest Hamra, Sidaoun, and D'man as breeds deserving the highest priority for conservation in Algeria. PMID:25875832

  2. Evaluating water management scenarios to support habitat management for the Cape Sable seaside sparrow

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Beerens, James M.; Romañach, Stephanie S.; McKelvy, Mark

    2016-01-01

    The endangered Cape Sable seaside sparrow (Ammodramus maritimus mirabilis) is endemic to south Florida and a key indicator species of marl prairie, a highly diverse freshwater community in the Florida Everglades. Maintenance and creation of suitable habitat is seen as the most important pathway to the persistence of the six existing sparrow subpopulations; however, major uncertainties remain in how to increase suitable habitat within and surrounding these subpopulations, which are vulnerable to environmental stochasticity. Currently, consistently suitable conditions for the Cape Sable seaside sparrow are only present in two of these subpopulations (B and E). The water management scenarios evaluated herein were intended to lower water levels and improve habitat conditions in subpopulation A and D, raise water levels to improve habitat conditions in subpopulations C and F, and minimize impacts to subpopulations B and E. Our objective in this analysis was to compare these scenarios utilizing a set of metrics (short- to long-time scales) that relate habitat suitability to hydrologic conditions. Although hydrologic outputs are similar across scenarios in subpopulation A, scenario R2H reaches the hydroperiod and depth suitability targets more than the other scenarios relative to ECB, while minimizing negative consequences to subpopulation E. However, although R2H hydroperiods are longer than those for ECB during the wet season in subpopulations C and F, depths during the breeding season are predicted to decrease in suitability (less than -50 cm) relative to existing conditions.

  3. Population and habitat viability assessment for the Wyoming toad (Bufo baxteri): Final workshop report

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    2001-01-01

    The Wyoming toad was listed as an endangered species under the Endangered Species Act on January 17, 1984, with a recovery plan approved in 1991. Currently the total population of the Wyoming toad includes approximately 200 animals in the captive breeding program and as few as 62 toads surviving at reintroduction sites in the Laramie Basin based upon fall 2000 survey data (after releases of more than 10,000 toads and tadpoles since 1995). Necessary conservation measures include improving reproduction and survival in the captive breeding program, improving survival at reintroduction sites, developing techniques to control the effects of the amphibian chytrid fungus, and eliminating threats and further habitat degradation in the wild.

  4. EVALUATING AN URBAN STREAM RESTORATION PROGRAM FOR IMPROVING WATER QUALITY, IN-STREAM HABITAT, AND BANK STABILITY

    EPA Science Inventory

    To improve water quality in urban and suburban areas, watershed managers often incorporate best management practices (BMPs) to reduce the quantity of runoff, as well as minimize pollutants and other stressors contained in stormwater runoff. It is well known that land use practice...

  5. Habitat classification modeling with incomplete data: Pushing the habitat envelope

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Zarnetske, P.L.; Edwards, T.C., Jr.; Moisen, G.G.

    2007-01-01

    Habitat classification models (HCMs) are invaluable tools for species conservation, land-use planning, reserve design, and metapopulation assessments, particularly at broad spatial scales. However, species occurrence data are often lacking and typically limited to presence points at broad scales. This lack of absence data precludes the use of many statistical techniques for HCMs. One option is to generate pseudo-absence points so that the many available statistical modeling tools can be used. Traditional techniques generate pseudoabsence points at random across broadly defined species ranges, often failing to include biological knowledge concerning the species-habitat relationship. We incorporated biological knowledge of the species-habitat relationship into pseudo-absence points by creating habitat envelopes that constrain the region from which points were randomly selected. We define a habitat envelope as an ecological representation of a species, or species feature's (e.g., nest) observed distribution (i.e., realized niche) based on a single attribute, or the spatial intersection of multiple attributes. We created HCMs for Northern Goshawk (Accipiter gentilis atricapillus) nest habitat during the breeding season across Utah forests with extant nest presence points and ecologically based pseudo-absence points using logistic regression. Predictor variables were derived from 30-m USDA Landfire and 250-m Forest Inventory and Analysis (FIA) map products. These habitat-envelope-based models were then compared to null envelope models which use traditional practices for generating pseudo-absences. Models were assessed for fit and predictive capability using metrics such as kappa, thresholdindependent receiver operating characteristic (ROC) plots, adjusted deviance (Dadj2), and cross-validation, and were also assessed for ecological relevance. For all cases, habitat envelope-based models outperformed null envelope models and were more ecologically relevant, suggesting

  6. Habitat classification modeling with incomplete data: pushing the habitat envelope.

    PubMed

    Zarnetske, Phoebe L; Edwards, Thomas C; Moisen, Gretchen G

    2007-09-01

    Habitat classification models (HCMs) are invaluable tools for species conservation, land-use planning, reserve design, and metapopulation assessments, particularly at broad spatial scales. However, species occurrence data are often lacking and typically limited to presence points at broad scales. This lack of absence data precludes the use of many statistical techniques for HCMs. One option is to generate pseudo-absence points so that the many available statistical modeling tools can bb used. Traditional techniques generate pseudo-absence points at random across broadly defined species ranges, often failing to include biological knowledge concerning the species-habitat relationship. We incorporated biological knowledge of the species-habitat relationship into pseudo-absence points by creating habitat envelopes that constrain the region from which points were randomly selected. We define a habitat envelope as an ecological representation of a species, or species feature's (e.g., nest) observed distribution (i.e., realized niche) based on a single attribute, or the spatial intersection of multiple attributes. We created HCMs for Northern Goshawk (Accipiter gentilis atricapillus) nest habitat during the breeding season across Utah forests with extant nest presence points and ecologically based pseudo-absence points using logistic regression. Predictor variables were derived from 30-m USDA Landfire and 250-m Forest Inventory and Analysis (FIA) map products. These habitat-envelope-based models were then compared to null envelope models which use traditional practices for generating pseudo-absences. Models were assessed for fit and predictive capability using metrics such as kappa, threshold-independent receiver operating characteristic (ROC) plots, adjusted deviance (D(adj)2), and cross-validation, and were also assessed for ecological relevance. For all cases, habitat envelope-based models outperformed null envelope models and were more ecologically relevant

  7. Carry-Over Effects of Nonbreeding Habitat on Start-to-Finish Spring Migration Performance of a Songbird.

    PubMed

    McKinnon, Emily A; Stanley, Calandra Q; Stutchbury, Bridget J M

    2015-01-01

    For migratory animals, conditions during the nonbreeding period may carry-over to influence spring migration performance. Animals in low-quality habitats are predicted to be in poorer condition, show later migration timing, and travel at slower speeds. This can result in subsequent negative effects on fitness. We tested the hypothesis that nonbreeding season body condition and habitat quality carry-over to affect spring migration performance of a long-distance migratory songbird, the Wood Thrush (Hylocichla mustelina). We tracked individual birds between multiple breeding sites in North America and nonbreeding sites in Central America. First, we compared body condition of nonbreeding birds migrating to the same general region of the breeding range with spring migration performance (timing, speed, and duration) obtained from light-level geolocators. Second, we assessed the Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI) as a proxy for nonbreeding habitat quality, and predicted that birds from wetter habitat or in wetter years (higher NDVI) would show improved migration performance relative to birds from drier sites. We found no evidence of individual-level carry-over effects of nonbreeding season body condition on spring migration performance. Lower NDVI of nonbreeding habitat resulted in delayed spring migration departure, but this effect disappeared by arrival at breeding sites. Birds occupying drier nonbreeding sites migrated faster and for fewer days, compensating for their relatively late departure. We also documented a broader pattern in NDVI and migration timing and distance, in that birds that occupied the wettest areas in the southern part of the nonbreeding range departed significantly later and migrated farther. Our results suggest that individual carry-over effects of nonbreeding habitat quality may be compensated for by a faster and shorter migration strategy. At a broad scale, consistently later spring timing and longer migration distances were

  8. Carry-Over Effects of Nonbreeding Habitat on Start-to-Finish Spring Migration Performance of a Songbird

    PubMed Central

    McKinnon, Emily A.; Stanley, Calandra Q.; Stutchbury, Bridget J. M.

    2015-01-01

    For migratory animals, conditions during the nonbreeding period may carry-over to influence spring migration performance. Animals in low-quality habitats are predicted to be in poorer condition, show later migration timing, and travel at slower speeds. This can result in subsequent negative effects on fitness. We tested the hypothesis that nonbreeding season body condition and habitat quality carry-over to affect spring migration performance of a long-distance migratory songbird, the Wood Thrush (Hylocichla mustelina). We tracked individual birds between multiple breeding sites in North America and nonbreeding sites in Central America. First, we compared body condition of nonbreeding birds migrating to the same general region of the breeding range with spring migration performance (timing, speed, and duration) obtained from light-level geolocators. Second, we assessed the Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI) as a proxy for nonbreeding habitat quality, and predicted that birds from wetter habitat or in wetter years (higher NDVI) would show improved migration performance relative to birds from drier sites. We found no evidence of individual-level carry-over effects of nonbreeding season body condition on spring migration performance. Lower NDVI of nonbreeding habitat resulted in delayed spring migration departure, but this effect disappeared by arrival at breeding sites. Birds occupying drier nonbreeding sites migrated faster and for fewer days, compensating for their relatively late departure. We also documented a broader pattern in NDVI and migration timing and distance, in that birds that occupied the wettest areas in the southern part of the nonbreeding range departed significantly later and migrated farther. Our results suggest that individual carry-over effects of nonbreeding habitat quality may be compensated for by a faster and shorter migration strategy. At a broad scale, consistently later spring timing and longer migration distances were

  9. Population size of snowy plovers breeding in North America

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Thomas, Susan M.; Lyons, James E.; Andres, Brad A.; T-Smith, Elise Elliot; Palacios, Eduardo; Cavitt, John F.; Royle, J. Andrew; Fellows, Suzanne D.; Maty, Kendra; Howe, William H.; Mellink, Eric; Melvin, Stefani; Zimmerman, Tara

    2012-01-01

    Snowy Plovers (Charadrius nivosus) may be one of the rarest shorebirds in North America yet a comprehensive assessment of their abundance and distribution has not been completed. During 2007 and 2008, 557 discrete wetlands were surveyed and nine additional large wetland complexes sampled in México and the USA. From these surveys, a population of 23,555 (95% CI = 17,299 – 29,859) breeding Snowy Plovers was estimated. Combining the estimate with information from areas not surveyed, the total North American population was assessed at 25,869 (95% CI = 18,917 – 32,173). Approximately 42% of all breeding Snowy Plovers in North America resided at two sites (Great Salt Lake, Utah, and Salt Plains National Wildlife Refuge, Oklahoma), and 33% of all these were on wetlands in the Great Basin (including Great Salt Lake). Also, coastal habitats in central and southern Texas supported large numbers of breeding plovers. New breeding sites were discovered in interior deserts and highlands and along the Pacific coast of México; approximately 9% of the North American breeding population occurred in México. Because of uncertainties about effects of climate change and current stresses to breeding habitats, the species should be a management and conservation priority. Periodic monitoring should be undertaken at important sites to ensure high quality habitat is available to support the Snowy Plover population.

  10. Habitat exploration and use in dispersing juvenile flying squirrels.

    PubMed

    Selonen, Vesa; Hanski, Ilpo K

    2006-11-01

    1. Variation in behaviours involved in habitat selection is important for several evolutionary and ecological processes. For example, habitat use during dispersal may differ from breeding habitat use, and for dispersers the scale of habitat familiarity is determined by exploratory behaviour. We studied habitat use and exploration of 56 radio-collared juvenile flying squirrels Pteromys volans L. within natal home range and during dispersal, and compared habitat use between juveniles and 37 adults within breeding home range. 2. Before dispersal, young flying squirrels actively moved around the natal site. Surprisingly, long-distance dispersers explored less than short-distance dispersers, but philopatric individuals explored similar distances as dispersers. Females explored less than males, although females are the more dispersive sex in flying squirrels. 3. For most of the individuals the settlement area was unfamiliar due to long dispersal distance. Consequently, direction and distance of exploration were not very strong predictors of settlement location. However, individuals familiar with the settlement area concentrated exploration to that area. Exploration did not correlate with short-term survival. 4. Dispersers preferred breeding habitat while dispersing, but were found more often in matrix habitat than juveniles within natal, or adults within breeding, home ranges. 5. We conclude that familiarity does not determine settlement as much as, for example, availability of the habitat for flying squirrels. Based on our results, it also seems clear that data on adult habitat use are not enough to predict habitat use of dispersing individuals. In addition, our results support the recent view that short- and long-distance dispersers may need to be analysed separately in ecological and evolutionary analyses. PMID:17032376

  11. An empirical evaluation of landscape energetic models: Mallard and American black duck space use during the non-breeding period

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Beatty, William S.; Webb, Elisabeth B.; Kesler, Dylan C.; Naylor, Luke W.; Raedeke, Andrew H.; Humburg, Dale D.; Coluccy, John M.; Soulliere, G.

    2015-01-01

    Bird conservation Joint Ventures are collaborative partnerships between public agencies and private organizations that facilitate habitat management to support waterfowl and other bird populations. A subset of Joint Ventures has developed energetic carrying capacity models (ECCs) to translate regional waterfowl population goals into habitat objectives during the non-breeding period. Energetic carrying capacity models consider food biomass, metabolism, and available habitat to estimate waterfowl carrying capacity within an area. To evaluate Joint Venture ECCs in the context of waterfowl space use, we monitored 33 female mallards (Anas platyrhynchos) and 55 female American black ducks (A. rubripes) using global positioning system satellite telemetry in the central and eastern United States. To quantify space use, we measured first-passage time (FPT: time required for an individual to transit across a circle of a given radius) at biologically relevant spatial scales for mallards (3.46 km) and American black ducks (2.30 km) during the non-breeding period, which included autumn migration, winter, and spring migration. We developed a series of models to predict FPT using Joint Venture ECCs and compared them to a biological null model that quantified habitat composition and a statistical null model, which included intercept and random terms. Energetic carrying capacity models predicted mallard space use more efficiently during autumn and spring migrations, but the statistical null was the top model for winter. For American black ducks, ECCs did not improve predictions of space use; the biological null was top ranked for winter and the statistical null was top ranked for spring migration. Thus, ECCs provided limited insight into predicting waterfowl space use during the non-breeding season. Refined estimates of spatial and temporal variation in food abundance, habitat conditions, and anthropogenic disturbance will likely improve ECCs and benefit conservation planners

  12. Cassava Breeding I: The Value of Breeding Value

    PubMed Central

    Ceballos, Hernán; Pérez, Juan C.; Joaqui Barandica, Orlando; Lenis, Jorge I.; Morante, Nelson; Calle, Fernando; Pino, Lizbeth; Hershey, Clair H.

    2016-01-01

    Breeding cassava relies on several selection stages (single row trial-SRT; preliminary; advanced; and uniform yield trials—UYT). This study uses data from 14 years of evaluations. From more than 20,000 genotypes initially evaluated only 114 reached the last stage. The objective was to assess how the data at SRT could be used to predict the probabilities of genotypes reaching the UYT. Phenotypic data from each genotype at SRT was integrated into the selection index (SIN) used by the cassava breeding program. Average SIN from all the progenies derived from each progenitor was then obtained. Average SIN is an approximation of the breeding value of each progenitor. Data clearly suggested that some genotypes were better progenitors than others (e.g., high number of their progenies reaching the UYT), suggesting important variation in breeding values of progenitors. However, regression of average SIN of each parental genotype on the number of their respective progenies reaching UYT resulted in a negligible coefficient of determination (r2 = 0.05). Breeding value (e.g., average SIN) at SRT was not efficient predicting which genotypes were more likely to reach the UYT stage. Number of families and progenies derived from a given progenitor were more efficient predicting the probabilities of the progeny from a given parent reaching the UYT stage. Large within-family genetic variation tends to mask the true breeding value of each progenitor. The use of partially inbred progenitors (e.g., S1 or S2 genotypes) would reduce the within-family genetic variation thus making the assessment of breeding value more accurate. Moreover, partial inbreeding of progenitors can improve the breeding value of the original (S0) parental material and sharply accelerate genetic gains. For instance, homozygous S1 genotypes for the dominant resistance to cassava mosaic disease (CMD) could be generated and selected. All gametes from these selected S1 genotypes would carry the desirable allele and

  13. Cassava Breeding I: The Value of Breeding Value.

    PubMed

    Ceballos, Hernán; Pérez, Juan C; Joaqui Barandica, Orlando; Lenis, Jorge I; Morante, Nelson; Calle, Fernando; Pino, Lizbeth; Hershey, Clair H

    2016-01-01

    Breeding cassava relies on several selection stages (single row trial-SRT; preliminary; advanced; and uniform yield trials-UYT). This study uses data from 14 years of evaluations. From more than 20,000 genotypes initially evaluated only 114 reached the last stage. The objective was to assess how the data at SRT could be used to predict the probabilities of genotypes reaching the UYT. Phenotypic data from each genotype at SRT was integrated into the selection index (SIN) used by the cassava breeding program. Average SIN from all the progenies derived from each progenitor was then obtained. Average SIN is an approximation of the breeding value of each progenitor. Data clearly suggested that some genotypes were better progenitors than others (e.g., high number of their progenies reaching the UYT), suggesting important variation in breeding values of progenitors. However, regression of average SIN of each parental genotype on the number of their respective progenies reaching UYT resulted in a negligible coefficient of determination (r (2) = 0.05). Breeding value (e.g., average SIN) at SRT was not efficient predicting which genotypes were more likely to reach the UYT stage. Number of families and progenies derived from a given progenitor were more efficient predicting the probabilities of the progeny from a given parent reaching the UYT stage. Large within-family genetic variation tends to mask the true breeding value of each progenitor. The use of partially inbred progenitors (e.g., S1 or S2 genotypes) would reduce the within-family genetic variation thus making the assessment of breeding value more accurate. Moreover, partial inbreeding of progenitors can improve the breeding value of the original (S0) parental material and sharply accelerate genetic gains. For instance, homozygous S1 genotypes for the dominant resistance to cassava mosaic disease (CMD) could be generated and selected. All gametes from these selected S1 genotypes would carry the desirable allele and

  14. Habitats of North American sea ducks.

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Derksen, Dirk V.; Petersen, Margaret R.; Savard, Jean-Pierre L.

    2015-01-01

    Breeding, molting, fall and spring staging, and wintering habitats of the sea duck tribe Mergini are described based on geographic locations and distribution in North America, geomorphology, vegetation and soil types, and fresh water and marine characteristics. The dynamics of habitats are discussed in light of natural and anthropogenic events that shape areas important to sea ducks. Strategies for sea duck habitat management are outlined and recommendations for international collaboration to preserve key terrestrial and aquatic habitats are advanced. We follow the definition of habitat advanced by Odum (1971), which is the place or space where an organism lives. Weller (1999) emphasized that habitats for waterbirds required presence of sufficient resources (i.e., food, water, cover, space) for maintenance during a portion of their annual cycle. Habitats exploited by North American sea ducks are diverse, widespread across the continent and adjacent marine waters and until recently, most were only superficially known. Even following a 15-year-long effort through the Sea Duck Joint Venture and U.S. and Canadian Endangered/Threatened Species programs to fund research focused on sea duck habitats there are still important gaps in our understanding of key elements required by some species during various life stages. Importantly, many significant habitats, especially staging and wintering sites, have been and continue to be destroyed or altered, largely as a result of anthropogenic effects. Our goal here is to develop a comprehensive summary of marine, freshwater, and terrestrial habitats and their characteristics by considering sea duck species with similar needs as groups (e.g., eiders) within the tribe Mergini. Additionally, this chapter will examine threats and changes to sea duck habitats from human-caused and natural events. Finally, we will evaluate conservation and management programs underway or available for maintenance and enhancement of habitats critical for

  15. Teetering on the edge or too late? Conservation and research issues for avifauna of sagebrush habitats

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Knick, Steven T.; Dobkin, D.S.; Rotenberry, J.T.; Schroeder, M.A.; Vander Haegen, M.; Van Riper, C.

    2003-01-01

    Degradation, fragmentation, and loss of native sagebrush (Artemisia spp.) landscapes have imperiled these habitats and their associated avifauna. Historically, this vast piece of the Western landscape has been undervalued: even though more than 70% of all remaining sagebrush habitat in the United States is publicly owned, <3% of it is protected as federal reserves or national parks. We review the threats facing birds in sagebrush habitats to emphasize the urgency for conservation and research actions, and synthesize existing information that forms the foundation for recommended research directions. Management and conservation of birds in sagebrush habitats will require more research into four major topics: (1) identification of primary land-use practices and their influence on sagebrush habitats and birds, (2) better understanding of bird responses to habitat components and disturbance processes of sagebrush ecosystems, (3) improved hierarchical designs for surveying and monitoring programs, and (4) linking bird movements and population changes during migration and wintering periods to dynamics on the sagebrush breeding grounds. This research is essential because we already have seen that sagebrush habitats can be altered by land use, spread of invasive plants, and disrupted disturbance regimes beyond a threshold at which natural recovery is unlikely. Research on these issues should be instituted on lands managed by state or federal agencies because most lands still dominated by sagebrush are owned publicly. In addition to the challenge of understanding shrubsteppe bird-habitat dynamics, conservation of sagebrush landscapes depends on our ability to recognize and communicate their intrinsic value and on our resolve to conserve them.

  16. Habitat selection responses of parents to offspring predation risk: An experimental test

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Fontaine, J.J.; Martin, T.E.

    2006-01-01

    The ability of nest predation to influence habitat settlement decisions in birds is widely debated, despite its importance in limiting fitness. Here, we experimentally manipulated nest predation risk across a landscape and asked the question, do migratory birds assess and respond to variation in nest predation risk when choosing breeding habitats? We examined habitat preference by quantifying the density and settlement date of eight species of migratory passerines breeding in areas with and without intact nest predator communities. We found consistently more individuals nesting in areas with reduced nest predation than in areas with intact predator assemblages, although predation risk had no influence on settlement or breeding phenology. Additionally, those individuals occupying safer nesting habitats exhibited increased singing activity. These findings support a causal relationship between habitat choice and nest predation risk and suggest the importance of nest predation risk in shaping avian community structure and breeding activity. ?? 2006 by The University of Chicago. All rights reserved.

  17. Breeding erect plant type sweetpotato lines using cross breeding and gamma-ray irradiation

    PubMed Central

    Kuranouchi, Toshikazu; Kumazaki, Tadashi; Kumagai, Toru; Nakatani, Makoto

    2016-01-01

    Few sweetpotato (Ipomoea batatas Lam.) cultivars with erect plant type are available despite their advantages over spreading type, such as simplicity of cultivation and ability to adapt to limited space. One of the reasons is insufficiency of their agronomic characteristics for table use. So, it is important to overcome these drawbacks of ER-type lines. We attempted to breed new erect plant type sweetpotato lines having good agronomic traits using cross breeding and mutation breeding with gamma-ray irradiation. With cross breeding we successfully developed new erect plant type lines with almost equal levels of yield as compared to ‘Beniazuma’, one of the leading cultivars in Japan. However, mutation breeding failed to develop any promising lines because we could not obtain distinct erect plant type lines. In the future larger numbers of plants should be used for mutation breeding, and irradiation methods should be improved. PMID:27436957

  18. Breeding erect plant type sweetpotato lines using cross breeding and gamma-ray irradiation.

    PubMed

    Kuranouchi, Toshikazu; Kumazaki, Tadashi; Kumagai, Toru; Nakatani, Makoto

    2016-06-01

    Few sweetpotato (Ipomoea batatas Lam.) cultivars with erect plant type are available despite their advantages over spreading type, such as simplicity of cultivation and ability to adapt to limited space. One of the reasons is insufficiency of their agronomic characteristics for table use. So, it is important to overcome these drawbacks of ER-type lines. We attempted to breed new erect plant type sweetpotato lines having good agronomic traits using cross breeding and mutation breeding with gamma-ray irradiation. With cross breeding we successfully developed new erect plant type lines with almost equal levels of yield as compared to 'Beniazuma', one of the leading cultivars in Japan. However, mutation breeding failed to develop any promising lines because we could not obtain distinct erect plant type lines. In the future larger numbers of plants should be used for mutation breeding, and irradiation methods should be improved. PMID:27436957

  19. Determining habitat quality for species that demonstrate dynamic habitat selection

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Beerens, James; Frederick, Peter C; Noonburg, Erik G; Gawlik, Dale E.

    2015-01-01

    Determining habitat quality for wildlife populations requires relating a species' habitat to its survival and reproduction. Within a season, species occurrence and density can be disconnected from measures of habitat quality when resources are highly seasonal, unpredictable over time, and patchy. Here we establish an explicit link among dynamic selection of changing resources, spatio-temporal species distributions, and fitness for predictive abundance and occurrence models that are used for short-term water management and long-term restoration planning. We used the wading bird distribution and evaluation models (WADEM) that estimate (1) daily changes in selection across resource gradients, (2) landscape abundance of flocks and individuals, (3) conspecific foraging aggregation, and (4) resource unit occurrence (at fixed 400 m cells) to quantify habitat quality and its consequences on reproduction for wetland indicator species. We linked maximum annual numbers of nests detected across the study area and nesting success of Great Egrets (Ardea alba), White Ibises (Eudocimus albus), and Wood Storks (Mycteria americana) over a 20-year period to estimated daily dynamics of food resources produced by WADEM over a 7490 km2 area. For all species, increases in predicted species abundance in March and high abundance in April were strongly linked to breeding responses. Great Egret nesting effort and success were higher when birds also showed greater conspecific foraging aggregation. Synthesis and applications: This study provides the first empirical evidence that dynamic habitat selection processes and distributions of wading birds over environmental gradients are linked with reproductive measures over periods of decades. Further, predictor variables at a variety of temporal (daily-multiannual) resolutions and spatial (400 m to regional) scales effectively explained variation in ecological processes that change habitat quality. The process used here allows managers to develop

  20. Determining habitat quality for species that demonstrate dynamic habitat selection.

    PubMed

    Beerens, James M; Frederick, Peter C; Noonburg, Erik G; Gawlik, Dale E

    2015-12-01

    Determining habitat quality for wildlife populations requires relating a species' habitat to its survival and reproduction. Within a season, species occurrence and density can be disconnected from measures of habitat quality when resources are highly seasonal, unpredictable over time, and patchy. Here we establish an explicit link among dynamic selection of changing resources, spatio-temporal species distributions, and fitness for predictive abundance and occurrence models that are used for short-term water management and long-term restoration planning. We used the wading bird distribution and evaluation models (WADEM) that estimate (1) daily changes in selection across resource gradients, (2) landscape abundance of flocks and individuals, (3) conspecific foraging aggregation, and (4) resource unit occurrence (at fixed 400 m cells) to quantify habitat quality and its consequences on reproduction for wetland indicator species. We linked maximum annual numbers of nests detected across the study area and nesting success of Great Egrets (Ardea alba), White Ibises (Eudocimus albus), and Wood Storks (Mycteria americana) over a 20-year period to estimated daily dynamics of food resources produced by WADEM over a 7490 km(2) area. For all species, increases in predicted species abundance in March and high abundance in April were strongly linked to breeding responses. Great Egret nesting effort and success were higher when birds also showed greater conspecific foraging aggregation. Synthesis and applications: This study provides the first empirical evidence that dynamic habitat selection processes and distributions of wading birds over environmental gradients are linked with reproductive measures over periods of decades. Further, predictor variables at a variety of temporal (daily-multiannual) resolutions and spatial (400 m to regional) scales effectively explained variation in ecological processes that change habitat quality. The process used here allows managers to

  1. Spatiotemporal variation in range-wide Golden-cheeked Warbler habitat

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Duarte, Adam; Jensen, Jennifer; Hatfield, Jeffrey S.; Weckerly, Floyd

    2013-01-01

    Habitat availability ultimately limits the distribution and abundance of wildlife species. Consequently, it is paramount to identify where wildlife habitat is and understand how it changes over time in order to implement large scale wildlife conservation plans. Yet, no work has quantified the degree of change in range-wide breeding habitat for the golden-cheeked warbler (Setophaga chrysoparia), despite the species being listed as endangered by the U.S. federal government. Thus, using available geographic information system (GIS) data and Landsat satellite imagery we quantified range-wide warbler breeding habitat change from 1999-2001 to 2010-2011. We detected a 29% reduction in total warbler breeding habitat and found that warbler breeding habitat was removed and became more fragmented at uneven rates across the warbler’s breeding range during this time period. This information will assist researchers and managers in prioritizing breeding habitat conservation efforts for the species and provide a foundation for more realistic carrying capacity scenarios when modeling golden-cheeked warbler populations over time. Additionally, this study highlights the need for future work centered on quantifying golden-cheeked warbler movement rates and distances in order to assess the degree of connectivity between increasingly fragmented habitat patches.

  2. Behavioural cues surpass habitat factors in explaining prebreeding resource selection by a migratory diving duck

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    O'Neil, Shawn T.; Warren, Jeffrey M.; Takekawa, John Y.; De La Cruz, Susan E. W.; Cutting, Kyle A.; Parker, Michael W.; Yee, Julie L.

    2014-01-01

    Prebreeding habitat selection in birds can often be explained in part by habitat characteristics. However, females may also select habitats on the basis of fidelity to areas of previous reproductive success or use by conspecifics. The relative influences of sociobehavioural attributes versus habitat characteristics in habitat selection has been primarily investigated in songbirds, while less is known about how these factors affect habitat selection processes in migratory waterfowl. Animal resource selection models often exhibit much unexplained variation; spatial patterns driven by social and behavioural characteristics may account for some of this. We radiomarked female lesser scaup, Aythya affinis, in the southwestern extent of their breeding range to explore hypotheses regarding relative roles of habitat quality, site fidelity and conspecific density in prebreeding habitat selection. We used linear mixed-effects models to relate intensity of use within female home ranges to habitat features, distance to areas of reproductive success during the previous breeding season and conspecific density. Home range habitats included shallow water (≤118 cm), moderate to high densities of flooded emergent vegetation/open water edge and open water areas with submerged aquatic vegetation. Compared with habitat features, conspecific female density and proximity to successful nesting habitats from the previous breeding season had greater influences on habitat use within home ranges. Fidelity and conspecific attraction are behavioural characteristics in some waterfowl species that may exert a greater influence than habitat features in influencing prebreeding space use and habitat selection within home ranges, particularly where quality habitat is abundant. These processes may be of critical importance to a better understanding of habitat selection in breeding birds.

  3. Cooperative breeding in birds: a comparative test of the life history hypothesis

    PubMed Central

    Arnold, K. E.; Owens, I. P. F.

    1998-01-01

    In approximately 3.2% of bird species individuals regularly forgo the opportunity to breed independently and instead breed cooperatively with other conspecifics, either as non-reproductive 'helpers' or as co-breeders. The traditional explanation for cooperative breeding is that the opportunities for breeding independently are limited owing to peculiar features of the species' breeding ecology. However, it has proved remarkably difficult to find any common ecological correlates of cooperative breeding in birds. This difficulty has led to the 'life history hypothesis', which suggests that the common feature of cooperatively breeding birds is their great longevity, rather than any particular feature of their breeding ecology. Here, we use a comparative method to test the life history hypothesis by looking for correlations between life history variation and variation in the frequency of cooperative breeding. First, we find that cooperative breeding in birds is not randomly distributed, but concentrated in certain families, thus supporting the idea that there may be a common basis to cooperative breeding in birds. Second, increases in the level of cooperative breeding are strongly associated with decreases in annual adult mortality and modal clutch size. Third, the proportion of cooperatively breeding species per family is correlated with a low family-typical value of annual mortality, suggesting that low mortality predisposes cooperative breeding rather than vice versa. Finally, the low rate of mortality typically found in cooperatively breeding species is associated with increasing sedentariness, lower latitudes, and decreased environmental fluctuation. We suggest that low annual mortality is the key factor that predisposes avian lineages to cooperative breeding, then ecological changes, such as becoming sedentary, further slow population turnover and reduce opportunities for independent breeding. As the traditional explanation suggests, the breeding habitat of

  4. Understanding the contribution of habitats and regional variation to long-term population trends in tricolored blackbirds

    PubMed Central

    Graves, Emily E; Holyoak, Marcel; Rodd Kelsey, T; Meese, Robert J

    2013-01-01

    Population trends represent a minimum amount of information required to assess the conservation status of a species. However, understanding and detecting trends can be complicated by variation among habitats and regions, and by dispersal connecting habitats through source-sink dynamics. We analyzed trends in breeding populations between habitats and regions to better understand the overall dynamics of a species' decline. Specifically, we analyzed historical trends in breeding populations of tricolored blackbirds (Agelaius tricolor) using breeding records from 1907 to 2009. The species breeds itinerantly and ephemerally uses multiple habitat types and breeding areas, which make interpretation of trends complex. We found overall abundance declines of 63% between 1935 and 1975. Since 1980 overall declines became nonsignificant and obscure despite large amounts of data from 1980 to 2009. Temporal trends differed between breeding habitat types and were associated with regional differences in population declines. A new habitat, triticale crops (a wheat-rye hybrid grain) produced colonies 40× larger, on average, than other breeding habitats, and contributed to a change in regional distribution since it primarily occurred in a single region. The mechanism for such an effect is not clear, but could represent the local availability of foodstuffs in the landscape rather than something specific to triticale crops. While variation in trends among habitats clearly occurred, they could not easily be ascribed to source-sink dynamics, ecological traps, habitat selection or other detailed ecological mechanisms. Nonetheless, such exchanges provide valuable information to guide management of dynamic systems. PMID:24101977

  5. Understanding the contribution of habitats and regional variation to long-term population trends in tricolored blackbirds.

    PubMed

    Graves, Emily E; Holyoak, Marcel; Rodd Kelsey, T; Meese, Robert J

    2013-09-01

    Population trends represent a minimum amount of information required to assess the conservation status of a species. However, understanding and detecting trends can be complicated by variation among habitats and regions, and by dispersal connecting habitats through source-sink dynamics. We analyzed trends in breeding populations between habitats and regions to better understand the overall dynamics of a species' decline. Specifically, we analyzed historical trends in breeding populations of tricolored blackbirds (Agelaius tricolor) using breeding records from 1907 to 2009. The species breeds itinerantly and ephemerally uses multiple habitat types and breeding areas, which make interpretation of trends complex. We found overall abundance declines of 63% between 1935 and 1975. Since 1980 overall declines became nonsignificant and obscure despite large amounts of data from 1980 to 2009. Temporal trends differed between breeding habitat types and were associated with regional differences in population declines. A new habitat, triticale crops (a wheat-rye hybrid grain) produced colonies 40× larger, on average, than other breeding habitats, and contributed to a change in regional distribution since it primarily occurred in a single region. The mechanism for such an effect is not clear, but could represent the local availability of foodstuffs in the landscape rather than something specific to triticale crops. While variation in trends among habitats clearly occurred, they could not easily be ascribed to source-sink dynamics, ecological traps, habitat selection or other detailed ecological mechanisms. Nonetheless, such exchanges provide valuable information to guide management of dynamic systems. PMID:24101977

  6. Categorization of potential breeding sites of dengue vectors in Johor, Malaysia.

    PubMed

    Nyamah, M A; Sulaiman, S; Omar, B

    2010-04-01

    This cross-sectional study was to compare and categorize potential breeding sites of dengue vectors, Aedes aegypti and Aedes albopictus at three different places, namely, an urban (Taman Permas Jaya, Johor Bahru, Johor), a suburban (Kg. Melayu Gelang Patah, Johor Bahru, Johor) and a rural (Felda Simpang Waha, Kota Tinggi, Johor) habitats in Malaysia. Larval surveys were conducted once in every two months at each habitat over a period of 11 months from August 2000 until June 2001. There was a significant difference between the three study sites in terms of potential breeding sites inspected (p<0.001). There were more potential breeding sites found in the rural area when compared to the urban and suburban habitats. The mean Potential Container Index (PCI) values in descending order were as follows: rural habitat (57.72)>suburban (29.35)>urban habitat (16.97). Both breeding sites and potential breeding sites were the nominator and the total number of containers inspected as the denominator in the formula of PCI, thus the latter could be a potential indicator to initiate anti-dengue campaign at the community level to rid off potential Aedes breeding sites. The three most common potential breeding sites of Aedes species were similar for urban and suburban habitats (flower pots, pails and bowls respectively). However, flower pots, vases and tyres were the three most common potential breeding sites for the rural habitat. Another finding in this study was that various types of larval habitats were found indoors and outdoors for both species. PMID:20562811

  7. Evaluating the accotink creek restoration project for improving water quality, in-stream habitat, and bank stability

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Struck, S.D.; Selvakumar, A.; Hyer, K.; O'Connor, T.

    2007-01-01

    Increased urbanization results in a larger percentage of connected impervious areas and can contribute large quantities of stormwater runoff and significant quantities of debris and pollutants (e.g., litter, oils, microorganisms, sediments, nutrients, organic matter, and heavy metals) to receiving waters. To improve water quality in urban and suburban areas, watershed managers often incorporate best management practices (BMPs) to reduce the quantity of runoff as well as to minimize pollutants and other stressors contained in stormwater runoff. It is well known that land-use practices directly impact urban streams. Stream flows in urbanized watersheds increase in magnitude as a function of impervious area and can result in degradation of the natural stream channel morphology affecting the physical, chemical, and biological integrity of the stream. Stream bank erosion, which also increases with increased stream flows, can lead to bank instability, property loss, infrastructure damage, and increased sediment loading to the stream. Increased sediment loads may lead to water quality degradation downstream and have negative impacts on fish, benthic invertebrates, and other aquatic life. Accotink Creek is in the greater Chesapeake Bay and Potomac watersheds, which have strict sediment criteria. The USEPA (United States Environmental Protection Agency) and USGS (United States Geological Survey) are investigating the effectiveness of stream restoration techniques as a BMP to decrease sediment load and improve bank stability, biological integrity, and in-stream water quality in an impaired urban watershed in Fairfax, Virginia. This multi-year project continuously monitors turbidity, specific conductance, pH, and water temperature, as well as biological and chemical water quality parameters. In addition, physical parameters (e.g., pebble counts, longitudinal and cross sectional stream surveys) were measured to assess geomorphic changes associated with the restoration. Data

  8. Mars habitat

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1991-01-01

    The College of Engineering & Architecture at Prairie View A&M University has been participating in the NASA/USRA Advanced Design Program since 1986. The interdisciplinary nature of the program allowed the involvement of students and faculty throughout the College of Engineering & Architecture for the last five years. The research goal for the 1990-1991 year is to design a human habitat on Mars that can be used as a permanent base for 20 crew members. The research is being conducted by undergraduate students from the Department of Architecture.

  9. Influence of land use and climate on wetland breeding birds in the Prairie Pothole region of Canada

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Forcey, G.M.; Linz, G.M.; Thogmartin, W.E.; Bleier, W.J.

    2007-01-01

    Bird populations are influenced by a variety of factors at both small and large scales that range from the presence of suitable nesting habitat, predators, and food supplies to climate conditions and land-use patterns. We evaluated the influences of regional climate and land-use variables on wetland breeding birds in the Canada section of Bird Conservation Region 11 (CA-BCR11), the Prairie Potholes. We used bird abundance data from the North American Breeding Bird Survey, land-use data from the Prairie Farm Rehabilitation Administration, and weather data from the National Climatic Data and Information Archive to model effects of regional environmental variables on bird abundance. Models were constructed a priori using information from published habitat associations in the literature, and fitting was performed with WinBUGS using Markov chain Monte Carlo techniques. Both land-use and climate variables contributed to predicting bird abundance in CA-BCR11, although climate predictors contributed the most to improving model fit. Examination of regional effects of climate and land use on wetland birds in CA-BCR11 revealed relationships with environmental covariates that are often overlooked by small-scale habitat studies. Results from these studies can be used to improve conservation and management planning for regional populations of avifauna. ?? 2007 NRC.

  10. Modeling sensitive elasmobranch habitats

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pennino, M. Grazia; Muñoz, Facundo; Conesa, David; López-Quílez, Antonio; Bellido, José Marí; a

    2013-10-01

    Basic information on the distribution and habitat preferences of ecologically important species is essential for their management and protection. In the Mediterranean Sea there is increasing concern over elasmobranch species because their biological (ecological) characteristics make them highly vulnerable to fishing pressure. Their removal could affect the structure and function of marine ecosystems, inducing changes in trophic interactions at the community level due to the selective elimination of predators or prey species, competitors and species replacement. In this study Bayesian hierarchical spatial models are used to map the sensitive habitats of the three most caught elasmobranch species (Galeus melastomus, Scyliorhinus canicula, Etmopterus spinax) in the western Mediterranean Sea, based on fishery-dependent bottom trawl data. Results show that habitats associated with hard substrata and sandy beds, mainly in deep waters and with a high seabed gradient, have a greater probability registering the presence of the studied species than those associated with muddy shallow waters. Temperature and chlorophyll-α concentration show a negative relationship with S. canicula occurrence. Our results identify some of the sensitive habitats for elasmobranchs in the western Mediterranean Sea (GSA06 South), providing essential and easy-to-use interpretation tools, such as predictive distribution maps, with the final aim of improving management and conservation of these vulnerable species.

  11. Natural Propagation and Habitat Improvement, Washington, Volume IIA, Tumwater Falls and Dryden Dam Fish Passage, 1983 Final Report.

    SciTech Connect

    Unknown Author

    1984-05-01

    This engineering feasibility and predesign report on the Tumwater Falls and Dryden Dam Fish Passage Project provides BPA with information for planning purposes and will serve as a discussion document for interested agencies. Tumwater Falls and Dryden Dams, both on the Wenatchee River, were built in the early 1900's as diversions for hydropower, and irrigation and hydropower, respectively. The present fishway facilities at both sites are inadequate to properly pass the anadromous fish runs in the Wenatchee River. These runs include spring and summer chinook salmon, sockeye salmon, coho salmon and steelhead trout. Predesign level drawings are provided in this report that represent fishway schemes capable of adequately passing present and projected fish runs. The effects of present passage facilities on anadromous fish stocks is addressed both quantitatively and qualitatively. The quantitative treatment assesses losses of adult migrants due to the structures and places an estimated value on those fish. The dollar figure is estimated to be between $391,000 and $701,000 per year for both structures. The qualitative approach to benefits deals with the concept of stock vigor, the need for passage improvements to help ensure the health of the anadromous fish stock. 29 references, 27 figures, 5 tables.

  12. Effects of silvicultultural modifications of temperate rainforest on breeding and wintering bird communities, Prince of Wales Island, southeast Alaska

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Dellasala, Dominick A.; Hagar, Joan C.; Engel, Kathleen A.; McComb, W.C.; Fairbanks, Randal L.; Campbell, Ellen G.

    1996-01-01

    We inventoried breeding and wintering bird communities in four treatments of temperate rainforest on Prince of Wales Island, southeast Alaska during 1991-1992 and 1992-1993. The four forest treatments sampled included: (1) young growth (20 years) originating from clearcut logging with no silvicultural modification (non-modified), (2) young growth (20 years) precommercially thinned along uniformly-spaced thinning grids (thinned), (3) young growth (20 years) with gaps in the overstory canopy created by felling trees in 0.05-ha openings (gapped), and (4) virgin old growth (2 150 years). Of 16 common breeding bird species observed, six showed significant responses to young-growth modifications. One species was more abundant and two species were less abundant in thinned sites, while one species was more abundant and two species were less abundant in gapped sites than at least one of the other treatments. None of the three common wintering species of birds observed was influenced by young-growth modification. Breeding bird communities, in general, were less similar between young- and old-growth treatments than among young-growth treatments. Three of the 16 common breeding bird species were more abundant in old growth than each of the young-growth treatments and one uncommon species was detected almost exclusivelyi n old growth duringb oth the breedinga nd wintering seasonsF. our other breeding bird species were more abundant in young-growth treatments than in old growth. Higher use of old growth by wintering birds was related to winter severity. To enhance habitat for wintering and breeding birds we recommend: (1) thinning young growth along variablespaced grids to create additional canopy layers and improve snow-intercept properties of young growth for canopy-foraging birds, (2) retention of old-growth clumps in clearcuts for bird species associated with old-growth structure, and (3) long-term conservation of oldgrowth temperate rainforest for breeding and wintering

  13. The peregrine falcon in Arizona: Habitat utilization and management recommendations

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Ellis, D.H.

    1982-01-01

    The peregrine falcon once bred in significant numbers in Arizona. Good documentation is available for specific breeding sites and an additional 20 general locations. This report, based on the published literature, an extensive personal contact survey, an aerial habitat inventory (over 124 hours air time), and ground visits to over 300 locations, provides information on habitat preferences and management practices which can contribute to the bird's survival. In seeking to identify the habitat preferences of the falcon, many site description factors were examined. Those traits which appeared common to most recent Arizona sites (and therefore most useful in evaluating habitat) were: elevation less than 9,000 feet, cliffs tall or very tall, cliffs extensive, topographic relief high, and surface water readily available. All recent sites are in extensive canyon systems or in extensive mountain ranges. Using a habitat evaluation key derived from the traits common to known breeding sites, all cliff regions in Arizona and the Navajo Indian Reservation were flown and evaluated for suitability. Nineteen falcon eyries located in subsequent ground visits were all in areas previously ranked acceptable or better. Many management alternatives are discussed: management of information on breeding sites, habitat preservation, controlling disruptive human activities, and enhancing productivity through the creation of suitable breeding ledges, providing pesticide free prey, or direct reintroductions. Given their privacy (and an increasingly pesticide free environment) the peregrine falcon will likely exist indefinitely in suitable areas across Arizona.

  14. Grande Ronde Basin Fish Habitat Enhancement Project : 1998 Annual Report.

    SciTech Connect

    McGowan, Vance R.; Powell, Russ M.

    1999-05-01

    The primary goal of ''The Grande Ronde Basin Fish Habitat Improvement Project'' is to access, create, improve, protect, and restore reparian and instream habitat for anadromous salmonids, thereby maximizing opportunities for natural fish production within the basin.

  15. Skeletal muscle transcriptional profiles in two Italian beef breeds, Chianina and Maremmana, reveal breed specific variation.

    PubMed

    Bongiorni, S; Gruber, C E M; Chillemi, G; Bueno, S; Failla, S; Moioli, B; Ferrè, F; Valentini, A

    2016-04-01

    Chianina and Maremmana breeds play an important role in the Italian cattle meat market. The Chianina breed is an ancient breed principally raised for draught. Now this breed is the worldwide recognized producer of top quality beef, tasteful and tender, specifically the famous "Florentine steak". The Maremmana characterized by a massive skeletal structure, is a rustic cattle breed selected for adaptability to the marshy land of the Maremma region. We used a high throughput mRNA sequencing to analyze gene expression in muscle tissues of two Italian cattle breeds, Maremmana (MM) and Chianina (CN) with different selection history. We aim to examine the specific genetic contribution of each breed to meat production and quality, comparing the skeletal muscle tissue from Maremmana and Chianina. Most of the differentially expressed genes were grouped in the Glycolysis/Gluconeogenesis pathways. The rate and the extent of post-mortem energy metabolism have a critical effect on the conversion of muscle to meat. Furthermore, we aim at discovering the differences in nucleotide variation between the two breeds which might be attributable to the different history of selection/divergence. In this work we could emphasize the involvement of pathways of post-mortem energy metabolism. Moreover, we detected a collection of coding SNPs which could offer new genomic resources to improve phenotypic selection in livestock breeding program. PMID:26896938

  16. Sexual Reproduction and Breeding

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    In the second edition of Plant Propagation Concepts and Laboratory Exercises, we have combined the first edition chapters 36: Sexual Reproduction in Angiosperms and 37: Breeding Horticultural Plants into the present single chapter Sexual Reproduction and Breeding. These topics are so closely relate...

  17. Habitat size and bird community management

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Anderson, S.H.; Robbins, C.S.

    1981-01-01

    The purpose of this paper is to review the results in the literature that show the effect of area of forest on nesting migratory bird species, and to present the results of additional field work that we have conducted in forest habitats in western Maryland. These results indicate the area sensitivity of many long distance migrants. Because 80 to 95 percent of the breeding birds in the northeastern deciduous forest are neotropical migrants, the changes in bird species composition as a result of forest fragmentation can be immense. Management strategies based on habitat size are suggested to assist in maintaining communities of nesting migratory birds.

  18. Facilitated by nature and agriculture: performance of a specialist herbivore improves with host-plant life history evolution, domestication, and breeding.

    PubMed

    Dávila-Flores, Amanda M; DeWitt, Thomas J; Bernal, Julio S

    2013-12-01

    Plant defenses against herbivores are predicted to change as plant lineages diversify, and with domestication and subsequent selection and breeding in the case of crop plants. We addressed whether defense against a specialist herbivore declined coincidently with life history evolution, domestication, and breeding within the grass genus Zea (Poaceae). For this, we assessed performance of corn leafhopper (Dalbulus maidis) following colonization of one of four Zea species containing three successive transitions: the evolutionary transition from perennial to annual life cycle, the agricultural transition from wild annual grass to primitive crop cultivar, and the agronomic transition from primitive to modern crop cultivar. Performance of corn leafhopper was measured through seven variables relevant to development speed, survivorship, fecundity, and body size. The plants included in our study were perennial teosinte (Zea diploperennis), Balsas teosinte (Zea mays parviglumis), a landrace maize (Zea mays mays), and a hybrid maize. Perennial teosinte is a perennial, iteroparous species, and is basal in Zea; Balsas teosinte is an annual species, and the progenitor of maize; the landrace maize is a primitive, genetically diverse cultivar, and is ancestral to the hybrid maize; and, the hybrid maize is a highly inbred, modern cultivar. Performance of corn leafhopper was poorest on perennial teosinte, intermediate on Balsas teosinte and landrace maize, and best on hybrid maize, consistent with our expectation of declining defense from perennial teosinte to hybrid maize. Overall, our results indicated that corn leafhopper performance increased most with the agronomic transition, followed by the life history transition, and least with the domestication transition. PMID:23868032

  19. Mourning Dove nesting habitat and nest success in Central Missouri

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Drobney, R.D.; Schulz, J.H.; Sheriff, S.L.; Fuemmeler, W.J.

    1998-01-01

    Previous Mourning Dove (Zenaida macroura) nesting studies conducted in areas containing a mixture of edge and continuous habitats have focused on edge habitats. Consequently, little is known about the potential contribution of continuous habitats to dove production. In this study we evaluated the relative importance of these two extensive habitat types by monitoring the habitat use and nest success of 59 radio-marked doves during 1990-1991 in central Missouri. Of 83 nests initiated by our marked sample, most (81.9%) were located in edge habitats. Although continuous habitats were selected less as nest sites, the proportion of successful nests did not differ significantly from that in edge habitats. Our data indicate that continuous habitats should not be considered marginal nesting habitat. If the intensity of use and nest success that we observed are representative regionally or nationally, continuous habitats could contribute substantially to annual Mourning Dove production because of the high availability of these habitats throughout much of the Mourning Dove breeding range.

  20. The Habitat Connection.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Naturescope, 1987

    1987-01-01

    Consists of activities which address the causes of habitat destruction and the effects of habitat loss on animals and plants. Identifies habitat loss as the major reason for the endangerment and extinction of plant and animal species. (ML)

  1. Habitat Demonstration Unit - Deep Space Habitat Configuration

    NASA Video Gallery

    This animated video shows the process of transporting, assembling and testing the Habitat Demonstration Unit - Deep Space Habitat (HDU DSH) configuration, which will be deployed during the 2011 Des...

  2. Advances in Japanese pear breeding in Japan.

    PubMed

    Saito, Toshihiro

    2016-01-01

    The Japanese pear (Pyrus pyrifolia Nakai) is one of the most widely grown fruit trees in Japan, and it has been used throughout Japan's history. The commercial production of pears increased rapidly with the successive discoveries of the chance seedling cultivars 'Chojuro' and 'Nijisseiki' around 1890, and the development of new cultivars has continued since 1915. The late-maturing, leading cultivars 'Niitaka' and 'Shinko' were released during the initial breeding stage. Furthermore, systematic breeding by the Horticultural Research Station (currently, NARO Institute of Fruit Tree Science, National Agriculture and Food Research Organization (NIFTS)) began in 1935, which mainly aimed to improve fruit quality by focusing on flesh texture and black spot disease resistance. To date, 22 cultivars have been released, including 'Kosui', 'Hosui', and 'Akizuki', which are current leading cultivars from the breeding program. Four induced mutant cultivars induced by gamma irradiation, which exhibit some resistance to black spot disease, were released from the Institute of Radiation Breeding. Among these cultivars, 'Gold Nijisseiki' has become a leading cultivar. Moreover, 'Nansui' from the Nagano prefectural institute breeding program was released, and it has also become a leading cultivar. Current breeding objectives at NIFTS mainly combine superior fruit quality with traits related to labor and cost reduction, multiple disease resistance, or self-compatibility. Regarding future breeding, marker-assisted selection for each trait, QTL analyses, genome-wide association studies, and genomic selection analyses are currently in progress. PMID:27069390

  3. Genetic diversity of local Yunnan chicken breeds and their relationships with Red Junglefowl.

    PubMed

    Huo, J L; Wu, G S; Chen, T; Huo, H L; Yuan, F; Liu, L X; Ge, C R; Miao, Y W

    2014-01-01

    Yunnan is situated in the Southwest China and encompasses regions having high biodiversity, including habitats for several ancestral species of domestic animals such as chicken. Domestic chickens in Yunnan were kept by peoples of varied ethnic and economic backgrounds living in highly varied geographic environments. To identify the genetic background of Yunnan domestic chickens and their relationships with Red Junglefowl, we applied 28 widely used microsatellite DNA markers to genotype 340 birds from 7 chicken breeds and Red Junglefowl indigenous to Yunnan. Among a total of 342 alleles identified, 121 (35.4%) were breed specific, with Red Junglefowl harboring most microsatellite alleles (23). High levels of heterozygosity were observed within populations indicated by a mean unbiased HE value of 0.663, which was higher than the reported for most populations elsewhere. The FIS value of domestic populations ranged from -0.098-0.005, indicating a lack of inbreeding among these populations. A high proportion of significant departures (89) from the 224 HWE tests for each locus in each population reflected an excess of heterozygosity and population substructure. Individual assignment tests, high FST values (0.1757-0.3015), and Nei's DA genetic distances (0.4232-0.6950) indicated clear differentiation among these populations. These observations, along with the close genetic distance between indigenous domestic populations and Red Junglefowl, were consistent with the primitive and ancestral state of Yunnan indigenous chickens. Protecting the unique variants of these indigenous poultry varieties from contamination with commercial breeds might provide values for improving modern agricultural livestock and breeding programs. Thus, the current study may benefit breeding management and conservation efforts. PMID:24841782

  4. Is income breeding an appropriate construct for waterfowl?

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Janke, Adam K.; Anteau, Michael J.; Markl, Nicholas; Stafford, Joshua D.

    2015-01-01

    Breeding birds use a range of nutrient accumulation and allocation strategies to meet the nutritional demands of clutch formation and incubation. On one end of the spectrum, capital breeders use stored nutrients acquired prior to clutch formation and incubation to sustain metabolism during reproduction, while on the opposite end, income breeders derive nutrients solely from exogenous sources on the breeding grounds. Blue-winged Teal (Anas discors) are an ideal candidate to test for adoption of an income strategy among migratory waterfowl because of their small body size, temperate breeding range, and timing of reproduction relative to pulses in nutrient availability within breeding habitats. We collected migrating and pre-breeding Blue-winged Teal (n = 110) during the warmest spring in over a century in the southern edge of the species’ breeding range, which produced ideal conditions to test for adoption of an income breeding strategy among migratory waterfowl. Regression analyses revealed that females accumulated protein and fat reserves early in follicle development and appeared to mobilize at least some reserves coincident with the onset of clutch formation. Accumulation and subsequent mobilization of nutrient reserves was inconsistent with adherence to an income breeding strategy and suggested breeding Blue-winged Teal used capital (albeit locally acquired) for reproduction. Our results add to existing knowledge on the ubiquity of endogenous nutrient reserve accumulation prior to and during reproduction by waterfowl, perhaps suggesting endogenous nutrient reserves are universally used for clutch formation or incubation to some degree. If indeed Blue-winged Teal and other waterfowl universally use capital for breeding, research and conservation efforts should shift from evaluating whether an income breeding strategy is used and focus on when and where necessary capital is acquired prior to clutch formation.

  5. Landscape Analysis of Adult Florida Panther Habitat

    PubMed Central

    Frakes, Robert A.; Belden, Robert C.; Wood, Barry E.

    2015-01-01

    Historically occurring throughout the southeastern United States, the Florida panther is now restricted to less than 5% of its historic range in one breeding population located in southern Florida. Using radio-telemetry data from 87 prime-aged (≥3 years old) adult panthers (35 males and 52 females) during the period 2004 through 2013 (28,720 radio-locations), we analyzed the characteristics of the occupied area and used those attributes in a random forest model to develop a predictive distribution map for resident breeding panthers in southern Florida. Using 10-fold cross validation, the model was 87.5 % accurate in predicting presence or absence of panthers in the 16,678 km2 study area. Analysis of variable importance indicated that the amount of forests and forest edge, hydrology, and human population density were the most important factors determining presence or absence of panthers. Sensitivity analysis showed that the presence of human populations, roads, and agriculture (other than pasture) had strong negative effects on the probability of panther presence. Forest cover and forest edge had strong positive effects. The median model-predicted probability of presence for panther home ranges was 0.81 (0.82 for females and 0.74 for males). The model identified 5579 km2 of suitable breeding habitat remaining in southern Florida; 1399 km2 (25%) of this habitat is in non-protected private ownership. Because there is less panther habitat remaining than previously thought, we recommend that all remaining breeding habitat in south Florida should be maintained, and the current panther range should be expanded into south-central Florida. This model should be useful for evaluating the impacts of future development projects, in prioritizing areas for panther conservation, and in evaluating the potential impacts of sea-level rise and changes in hydrology. PMID:26222526

  6. Landscape Analysis of Adult Florida Panther Habitat.

    PubMed

    Frakes, Robert A; Belden, Robert C; Wood, Barry E; James, Frederick E

    2015-01-01

    Historically occurring throughout the southeastern United States, the Florida panther is now restricted to less than 5% of its historic range in one breeding population located in southern Florida. Using radio-telemetry data from 87 prime-aged (≥3 years old) adult panthers (35 males and 52 females) during the period 2004 through 2013 (28,720 radio-locations), we analyzed the characteristics of the occupied area and used those attributes in a random forest model to develop a predictive distribution map for resident breeding panthers in southern Florida. Using 10-fold cross validation, the model was 87.5 % accurate in predicting presence or absence of panthers in the 16,678 km2 study area. Analysis of variable importance indicated that the amount of forests and forest edge, hydrology, and human population density were the most important factors determining presence or absence of panthers. Sensitivity analysis showed that the presence of human populations, roads, and agriculture (other than pasture) had strong negative effects on the probability of panther presence. Forest cover and forest edge had strong positive effects. The median model-predicted probability of presence for panther home ranges was 0.81 (0.82 for females and 0.74 for males). The model identified 5579 km2 of suitable breeding habitat remaining in southern Florida; 1399 km2 (25%) of this habitat is in non-protected private ownership. Because there is less panther habitat remaining than previously thought, we recommend that all remaining breeding habitat in south Florida should be maintained, and the current panther range should be expanded into south-central Florida. This model should be useful for evaluating the impacts of future development projects, in prioritizing areas for panther conservation, and in evaluating the potential impacts of sea-level rise and changes in hydrology. PMID:26222526

  7. Post-breeding migration of Dutch-breeding black-tailed godwits: timing, routes, use of stopovers, and nonbreeding destinations

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Hooijmeijer, Jos C. E. W.; Senner, Nathan R.; Tibbitts, T. Lee; Gill, Robert E., Jr.; Douglas, David C.; Bruinzeel, Leo W.; Wymenga, Eddy; Piersma, Theunis

    2014-01-01

    Conservation of long-distance migratory shorebirds is complex because these species use habitats spread across continents and hemispheres, making identification of critical habitats and potential bottlenecks in the annual cycle especially difficult. The population of Black-tailed Godwits that breeds in Western Europe, Limosa limosa limosa, has declined precipitously over the past few decades. Despite significant efforts to identify the root causes of this decline, much remains unclear. To better understand the migratory timing, use of stopover and nonbreeding sites, and the potential impact of breeding success on these parameters, we attached 15 Argos satellite transmitters and 10 geolocation tracking devices to adult godwits nearing completion of incubation at breeding sites in southwest Friesland, The Netherlands during the spring of 2009. We successfully tracked 16 adult godwits for their entire southward migration and two others for part of it. Three migration patterns and four regions of use were apparent. Most godwits left their breeding sites and proceeded south directly to stopover sites in the Mediterranean — e.g. Spain, Portugal, and Morocco — before flying on to non-breeding sites in West Africa. Other individuals spent the entire nonbreeding season in the Mediterranean. A third pattern included a few individuals that flew nonstop from their Dutch breeding sites to nonbreeding sites in West Africa. Tracking data from this study will be immediately useful for conservation efforts focused on preserving the dispersed network of sites used by godwits during their southward migration.

  8. Integration of georeferencing, habitat, sampling, and genetic data for documentation of wild plant genetic resources

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Plant genetic resource collections provide novel materials to the breeding and research communities. Availability of detailed documentation of passport, phenotypic, and genetic data increases the value of the genebank accessions. Inclusion of georeferenced sources, habitats, and sampling data in co...

  9. Utilization of surface mine ponds in East Tennessee by breeding amphibians

    SciTech Connect

    Turner, L.J.; Fowler, D.K.

    1981-06-01

    Of 24 ponds examined on Ollis Creek Surface Mine, Campbell County, Tennessee, 21 contained breeding amphibians. Twelve species of amphibians were identified in ponds that ranged from 4.0 to 8.0 in pH. Although ponds with low pH values were used by breeding amphibians, significantly more amphibian species were found in ponds with higher pH values. The average pH of ponds occupied by each amphibian species varied. Spring peepers (Hyla crucifer) occupied ponds with the lowest average pH (5.22) while upland chorus frogs (Pseudacris triseriata feriarum) utilized ponds with the highest average pH (6.33). Findings indicated high biological productivity in surface mine ponds. Aquatic vegetation was present in 20 of the 24 ponds. Aquatic insects and a diverse wildlife fauna utilized the study ponds. Large mammals (3 species), waterbirds (17 species), and snakes (2 species) were among those species observed. Surface mine ponds were found to supply an important habitat component for a variety of wildlife species and therefore improve the quality of wildlife habitat on the surface mines. In some areas, mine ponds are the only source of surface water available for wildlife use. 23 references, 9 figures, 5 tables.

  10. Feasibility for improving phytonutrient content in vegetable crops using conventional breeding strategies: case study with carotenoids and tocopherols in sweet corn and broccoli.

    PubMed

    Ibrahim, Khalid E; Juvik, John A

    2009-06-10

    Among vegetables, sweet corn ( Zea mays L.) and broccoli ( Brassica oleracea L. ssp. italica) are important sources of dietary carotenoids and tocopherols. Because medical evidence suggests that carotenoid and tocopherol health-promoting activity acts in a dose-dependent manner, conventional breeding to develop elite sweet corn and broccoli germplasm with enhanced levels of these phytochemicals will potentially promote health among the consuming public. This investigation includes the quantitative analysis of carotenoid and tocopherol contents of 41 corn and 24 broccoli genotypes grown in multiple environments (years and seasons in one location) to partition the variation into genetic, environment, and genotype by environment interaction (GxE) components and measure the phenotypic stability of genotypes for these phytochemicals. The primary carotenoids and tocopherols in corn were lutein and gamma-tocopherol (65 and 73% of total carotenoid and tocopherol, respectively), whereas beta-carotene and alpha-tocopherol were dominant in broccoli (65 and 79% of total carotenoid and tocopherol, respectively). Partitioning of the variance indicated that genetic differences among the genotypes averaged for the primary compounds in corn (lutein, zeaxanthin, and alpha- and gamma-tocopherol) and broccoli (beta-carotene, lutein, and alpha- and gamma-tocopherol) accounted for the largest proportion of the variation (67 and 55% of total phenotypic variation averaged across the phytochemicals in sweet corn and broccoli, respectively). Stability analysis identified several corn (IL451b sh2 and IL2027-8 sh2) and broccoli ('Pirate' and 'Baccus') genotypes with relatively high mean concentrations for the various carotenoids and tocopherols that were comparatively stable across seasons and years. The results of this investigation suggest that sweet corn and broccoli germplasm with enhanced concentrations of carotenoids and tocopherols can be developed using conventional breeding protocols

  11. Effects of breeding success, mate fidelity and senescence on breeding dispersal of male and female blue-footed boobies.

    PubMed

    Kim, Sin-Yeon; Torres, Roxana; Rodríguez, Cristina; Drummond, Hugh

    2007-05-01

    1. Understanding the effects of individual and population factors on variation in breeding dispersal (the movement of individuals between successive breeding sites) is key to identifying the strategies behind breeders' movements. Dispersal is often influenced by multiple factors and these can be confounded with each other. We used 13 years of data on the locations, mates, breeding success and ages of individuals to tease apart the factors influencing breeding dispersal in a colonially breeding long-lived seabird, the blue-footed booby Sula nebouxii. 2. Breeding dispersal varied among and within years. Males dispersed further in years of higher population density, and late breeding males and females dispersed further than early breeders. This temporal variation related to changes in competition for territory was taken into account in all tests of individual factors influencing breeding dispersal. 3. Individuals that retained their mates from the previous year dispersed shorter distances than those that changed their mates. 4. The effect of previous breeding success depended on mate fidelity. Unsuccessful breeding induced greater dispersal in birds that changed their mates but not in birds that retained their mates, indicating that breeders who change mates may take their own previous breeding experience into account during habitat selection. Faithful individuals may have to stay close to their previous sites to encounter their mates. 5. Male divorcees dispersed over shorter distances than their former mates, possibly because males contribute more than females to establishing territories. 6. Dispersal of males and females declined with increasing age over the first 10-11 years of life, then increased in old age, possibly due to senescent decay in the ability to compete for mates and territories. PMID:17439464

  12. Selective breeding of food size rainbow trout against Flavobacteriosis

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Selective breeding of rainbow trout is an important component of an integrated fish health management program. The current goals of our selective breeding program are to improve disease resistance, growth and survival in a reuse water environment. To improve these traits, data are recorded on thousa...

  13. Selective breeding of food sized rainbow trout against Flavobacteriosis

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Selective breeding of rainbow trout is an important component of an integrated fish health management program. The current goals of our selective breeding program are to improve disease resistance, growth and survival in a reuse water environment. To improve these traits, data are recorded on thousa...

  14. Citrus breeding, genetics and genomics in Japan.

    PubMed

    Omura, Mitsuo; Shimada, Takehiko

    2016-01-01

    Citrus is one of the most cultivated fruits in the world, and satsuma mandarin (Citrus unshiu Marc.) is a major cultivated citrus in Japan. Many excellent cultivars derived from satsuma mandarin have been released through the improvement of mandarins using a conventional breeding method. The citrus breeding program is a lengthy process owing to the long juvenility, and it is predicted that marker-assisted selection (MAS) will overcome the obstacle and improve the efficiency of conventional breeding methods. To promote citrus molecular breeding in Japan, a genetic mapping was initiated in 1987, and the experimental tools and resources necessary for citrus functional genomics have been developed in relation to the physiological analysis of satsuma mandarin. In this paper, we review the progress of citrus breeding and genome researches in Japan and report the studies on genetic mapping, expression sequence tag cataloguing, and molecular characterization of breeding characteristics, mainly in terms of the metabolism of bio-functional substances as well as factors relating to, for example, fruit quality, disease resistance, polyembryony, and flowering. PMID:27069387

  15. Citrus breeding, genetics and genomics in Japan

    PubMed Central

    Omura, Mitsuo; Shimada, Takehiko

    2016-01-01

    Citrus is one of the most cultivated fruits in the world, and satsuma mandarin (Citrus unshiu Marc.) is a major cultivated citrus in Japan. Many excellent cultivars derived from satsuma mandarin have been released through the improvement of mandarins using a conventional breeding method. The citrus breeding program is a lengthy process owing to the long juvenility, and it is predicted that marker-assisted selection (MAS) will overcome the obstacle and improve the efficiency of conventional breeding methods. To promote citrus molecular breeding in Japan, a genetic mapping was initiated in 1987, and the experimental tools and resources necessary for citrus functional genomics have been developed in relation to the physiological analysis of satsuma mandarin. In this paper, we review the progress of citrus breeding and genome researches in Japan and report the studies on genetic mapping, expression sequence tag cataloguing, and molecular characterization of breeding characteristics, mainly in terms of the metabolism of bio-functional substances as well as factors relating to, for example, fruit quality, disease resistance, polyembryony, and flowering. PMID:27069387

  16. Asotin Creek Instream Habitat Alteration Projects: 1998 Habitat Evaluation Surveys.

    SciTech Connect

    Bumgarner, Joseph D.

    1999-03-01

    The Asotin Creek Model Watershed Master Plan was completed 1994. The plan was developed by a landowner steering committee for the Asotin County Conservation District (ACCD), with technical support from the various Federal, State and local entities. Actions identified within the plan to improve the Asotin Creek ecosystem fall into four main categories, (1) Stream and Riparian, (2) Forestland, (3) Rangeland, and (4) Cropland. Specific actions to be carried out within the stream and in the riparian area to improve fish habitat were, (a) create more pools, (b) increase the amount of large organic debris (LOD), (c) increase the riparian buffer zone through tree planting, and (d) increase fencing to limit livestock access; additionally, the actions are intended to stabilize the river channel, reduce sediment input, and protect private property. Fish species of main concern in Asotin Creek are summer steelhead (Oncorhynchus mykiss), spring chinook (Oncorhynchus tshawytscha), and bull trout (Salvelinus confluentus). Spring chinook in Asotin Creek are considered extinct (Bumgarner et al. 1998); bull trout and summer steelhead are below historical levels and are currently as ''threatened'' under the ESA. In 1998, 16 instream habitat projects were planned by ACCD along with local landowners. The ACCD identified the need for a more detailed analysis of these instream projects to fully evaluate their effectiveness at improving fish habitat. The Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife's (WDFW) Snake River Lab (SRL) was contracted by the ACCD to take pre-construction measurements of the existing habitat (pools, LOD, width, depth, etc.) within each identified site, and to eventually evaluate fish use within these sites. All pre-construction habitat measurements were completed between 6 and 14 July, 1998. 1998 was the first year that this sort of evaluation has occurred. Post construction measurements of habitat structures installed in 1998, and fish usage evaluation, will be

  17. Breeding site selection by coho salmon (Oncorhynchus kisutch) in relation to large wood additions and factors that influence reproductive success

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Clark, Steven M.; Dunham, Jason B.; McEnroe, Jeffery R.; Lightcap, Scott W.

    2014-01-01

    The fitness of female Pacific salmon (Oncorhynchus spp.) with respect to breeding behavior can be partitioned into at least four fitness components: survival to reproduction, competition for breeding sites, success of egg incubation, and suitability of the local environment near breeding sites for early rearing of juveniles. We evaluated the relative influences of habitat features linked to these fitness components with respect to selection of breeding sites by coho salmon (Oncorhynchus kisutch). We also evaluated associations between breeding site selection and additions of large wood, as the latter were introduced into the study system as a means of restoring habitat conditions to benefit coho salmon. We used a model selection approach to organize specific habitat features into groupings reflecting fitness components and influences of large wood. Results of this work suggest that female coho salmon likely select breeding sites based on a wide range of habitat features linked to all four hypothesized fitness components. More specifically, model parameter estimates indicated that breeding site selection was most strongly influenced by proximity to pool-tail crests and deeper water (mean and maximum depths). Linkages between large wood and breeding site selection were less clear. Overall, our findings suggest that breeding site selection by coho salmon is influenced by a suite of fitness components in addition to the egg incubation environment, which has been the emphasis of much work in the past.

  18. Welfare in horse breeding

    PubMed Central

    Campbell, M. L. H.; Sandøe, P.

    2015-01-01

    Welfare problems related to the way horses are bred, whether by coitus or by the application of artificial reproduction techniques (ARTs), have been given no discrete consideration within the academic literature. This paper reviews the existing knowledge base about welfare issues in horse breeding and identifies areas in which data is lacking. We suggest that all methods of horse breeding are associated with potential welfare problems, but also that the judicious use of ARTs can sometimes help to address those problems. We discuss how negative welfare effects could be identified and limited and how positive welfare effects associated with breeding might be maximised. Further studies are needed to establish an evidence base about how stressful or painful various breeding procedures are for the animals involved, and what the lifetime welfare implications of ARTs are for future animal generations. PMID:25908746

  19. California red-legged frog (Rana draytonii) movement and habitat use: Implications for conservation

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Fellers, G.M.; Kleeman, P.M.

    2007-01-01

    Nonbreeding habitats are critically important for Rana draytonii, especially for individuals that breed in temporary bodies of water. We radiotracked 123 frogs to evaluate seasonal habitat use. Individual frogs were continuously tracked for up to 16 months. Some individuals remained at breeding ponds all year, but 66% of female and 25% of male frogs moved to nonbreeding areas, even when the breeding site retained water. Frogs at our main study site moved 150 m (median), roughly the distance to the nearest suitable nonbreeding area. The greatest straight-line distance traveled was 1.4 km, although the presumed distance traveled was 2.8 km. Females were more likely than males to move from permanent ponds (38% of females, 16% of males), but among dispersing frogs, males and females did not differ in distance moved. Some frogs left breeding sites shortly after oviposition (median = 12 days for females, 42.5 days for males), but many individuals remained until the site was nearly dry. Fog provided moisture for dispersal or migration throughout the summer. Our data demonstrate that maintaining populations of pond-breeding amphibians requires that all essential habitat components be protected; these include (1) breeding habitat, (2) nonbreeding habitat, and (3) migration corridors. In addition, a buffer is needed around all three areas to ensure that outside activities do not degrade any of the three habitat components. Copyright 2007 Society for the Study of Amphibians and Reptiles.

  20. Assisted Breeding in Sugar Beet

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Molecular insight and methods applied to plant breeding and germplasm enhancement is the goal of assisted breeding, also known as marker assisted breeding, marker assisted selection, molecular plant breeding, or genome-wide selection, among others. The basic idea is that most, if not all, heritable ...

  1. Wildlife Habitat Improvement Using Range Improvement Practices

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Wildfires in the Intermountain West are and annual event. The introduction and subsequent invasion of cheatgrass (Bromus tectorum) onto millions of hectares of rangelands throughout the West has resulted in devastating wildfires. With each passing wildfire season more and more critical wildlife habi...

  2. HOME RANGES AND HABITAT USE OF SUBURBAN RED-SHOULDERED HAWKS

    EPA Science Inventory

    Radio telemetry was used to determine home range size and habitat use for breeding season and non-breedng season red-shouldered hawks nesting in a surburban area in southwestern Ohio. Home ranges averaged 96.0 ha for males (n=4) and 48.3 for females (n-2) during the breeding sea...

  3. High Performance Home Building Guide for Habitat for Humanity Affiliates

    SciTech Connect

    Lindsey Marburger

    2010-10-01

    This guide covers basic principles of high performance Habitat construction, steps to achieving high performance Habitat construction, resources to help improve building practices, materials, etc., and affiliate profiles and recommendations.

  4. Multiple causes of sexual segregation in European red deer: enlightenments from varying breeding phenology at high and low latitude.

    PubMed Central

    Bonenfant, Christophe; Loe, Leif E.; Mysterud, Atle; Langvatn, Rolf; Stenseth, Nils Chr; Gaillard, Jean-Michel; Klein, François

    2004-01-01

    Sexual segregation outside the mating season occurs in most species of sexually dimorphic ungulates and has been extensively described in the literature, but the mechanisms causing segregation are still debated. The detailed pattern of sexual segregation throughout the year has rarely been presented for mammals, and no study, to our knowledge, has used latitudinal-related variation in breeding phenology to shed light on the underlying mechanisms. Recent methodological developments have made it possible to quantify separate components of segregation (social, habitat) and activity synchrony in animal groups, but these major improvements have so far been little used. We observed European red deer year round at two widely different latitudes (France and Norway) and tested three different mechanistic hypotheses of segregation related to: (i) predation risk; (ii) body-size-related forage selection; and (iii) activity budget. Habitat segregation peaked during calving in both populations and dropped rapidly after calving. Females with calves were more segregated from males than were females without calves, pointing to a key role of antipredator behaviour even though large predators are absent in France and extremely rare in Norway. However, at both sites individuals also grouped with their own sex within habitat types (i.e. social segregation), and individuals in mixed-sex groups were less synchronized in activity type than individuals in either unisex male or unisex female groups, suggesting that differences in activity budgets are involved. Social segregation peaked during calving and was lowest during the rut (indicating aggregation) in both populations; these activities occurred one month later in the Northern populations, corresponding well with known differences in breeding phenology. We conclude that latitude-dependent breeding phenology shapes the seasonal pattern of sexual segregation and that sexual segregation in ungulates has multiple causes. PMID:15255042

  5. Habitat-Specific Population Growth of a Farmland Bird

    PubMed Central

    Arlt, Debora; Forslund, Pär; Jeppsson, Tobias; Pärt, Tomas

    2008-01-01

    Background To assess population persistence of species living in heterogeneous landscapes, the effects of habitat on reproduction and survival have to be investigated. Methodology/Principal Findings We used a matrix population model to estimate habitat-specific population growth rates for a population of northern wheatears Oenanthe oenanthe breeding in farmland consisting of a mosaic of distinct habitat (land use) types. Based on extensive long-term data on reproduction and survival, habitats characterised by tall field layers (spring- and autumn-sown crop fields, ungrazed grasslands) displayed negative stochastic population growth rates (log λs: −0.332, −0.429, −0.168, respectively), that were markedly lower than growth rates of habitats characterised by permanently short field layers (pastures grazed by cattle or horses, and farmyards, log λs: −0.056, +0.081, −0.059). Although habitats differed with respect to reproductive performance, differences in habitat-specific population growth were largely due to differences in adult and first-year survival rates, as shown by a life table response experiment (LTRE). Conclusions/Significance Our results show that estimation of survival rates is important for realistic assessments of habitat quality. Results also indicate that grazed grasslands and farmyards may act as source habitats, whereas crop fields and ungrazed grasslands with tall field layers may act as sink habitats. We suggest that the strong decline of northern wheatears in Swedish farmland may be linked to the corresponding observed loss of high quality breeding habitat, i.e. grazed semi-natural grasslands. PMID:18714351

  6. Patterns of food abundance for breeding waterbirds in the san luis valley of Colorado

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Gammonley, J.H.; Laubhan, M.K.

    2002-01-01

    We measured the amount and distribution of macroinvertebrates and seeds in four wetland habitats (short emergent, seasonal open water, semipermanent/permanent open water, and saltgrass [Distichlis spicata]) used by breeding ducks and shorebirds at a wetland complex in the San Luis Valley, Colorado, USA. Density of macroinvertebrates did not differ among habitats or sampling periods (P = 0.45), but dry mass, crude protein, and gross energy production were greater (P < 0.05) in short emergent than in other habitats. These differences were largely due to the greater dry mass of gastropods in short emergent than in other habitats. Total seed density, dry mass, crude protein, and gross energy differed among habitats and periods with interaction effects (P <0.01). Although seed abundance varied among habitats and sampling periods, abundance was greatest in short emergent during all sampling periods. Breeding waterbirds consumed a variety of macroinvertebrates and seeds on the study area. Patterns of abundance among habitats of macroinvertebrates and seeds consumed by six waterbird species were not consistent with patterns of foraging habitat use by most ducks and shorebirds at this wetland complex. Our results indicate that estimates of food or nutrient abundance are useful in assessing the functional role of broad habitat types, but factors other than food abundance also influence avian selection of wetland foraging habitats. ?? 2002, The Society of Wetland Scientists.

  7. Western habitats - Session summary

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Titus, K.; Fuller, M.R.

    1989-01-01

    Determining the status of all habitats in the nine western states considered in this symposium is a difficult task. The authors of habitat status papers commented that the diversity of habitat classification systems limited their ability to relate habitat status to raptors. Differences of scale, objectives and survey design have hindered integration of habitat classification methods used by land managers with the habitat relationships understood by wildlife biologists, but examples now exist for successful integration of these methods. We suggest that land managers and wildlife biologists use common survey and classification schemes so that data can be combined and that results will be applicable over broader areas.

  8. Effect of urbanisation on habitat generalists: starlings not so flexible?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mennechez, Gwénaëlle; Clergeau, Philippe

    2006-09-01

    The small variability of habitat generalist abundances in relation to landscape changes has been related to their behavioural flexibility. We hypothesise that successful generalists, such as the starling, compensate for feeding resource difficulties (poor quality of food, accessibility) in habitats such as urban ecosystems and that its behavioural flexibility allows for similar breeding performance in rural and urban areas. Along an urbanisation gradient we compared simultaneously (1) success factors such as the abundance of breeding starlings, their breeding performance and the fitness of nestlings, and (2) possible flexibility quantified through the rate of parental food-provisioning, and the composition and the amount of food delivered to nestlings. Abundance of breeding starlings are similar throughout the urbanisation gradient, but urbanisation profoundly and negatively affects reproductive parameters of starlings. Differences in the amount of food delivered to nestlings by parents (less food in town centre), and the small masses of nestlings reared in the urban sectors support the idea that urban nestlings received insufficient food loads. Despite modifications to their diurnal food-provisioning rhythm and the incorporation of some human food refuse into their diet, starling parents have a significantly reduced production of young in the urban centre sector. We rebut the idea that the "generalist" starling is able to breed successfully anywhere: other more "specialist" species succeed in producing their young by innovating more in terms of diet resources. We suggest defining successful birds with respect to colonisation or invasion process through behavioural innovation rather than an ambiguous habitat generalist definition.

  9. Genetic characterization of four native Italian shepherd dog breeds and analysis of their relationship to cosmopolitan dog breeds using microsatellite markers.

    PubMed

    Bigi, D; Marelli, S P; Randi, E; Polli, M

    2015-12-01

    Very little research into genetic diversity of Italian native dog breeds has been carried out so far. In this study we aimed to estimate and compare the genetic diversity of four native Italian shepherd dog breeds: the Maremma, Bergamasco, Lupino del Gigante and Oropa shepherds. Therefore, some cosmopolitan dog breeds, which have been widely raised in Italy for a long time past, have also been considered to check possible influence of these dog populations on the Italian autochthonous breeds considered here. A total of 212 individuals, belonging to 10 different dog breeds, were sampled and genotyped using 18 autosomal microsatellite loci. We analyzed the genetic diversity of these breeds, within breed diversity, breed relationship and population structure. The 10 breeds considered in this study were clearly genetically differentiated from each other, regardless of current population sizes and the onset of separate breeding history. The level of genetic diversity explained 20% of the total genetic variation. The level of H E found here is in agreement with that found by other studies. The native Italian breeds showed generally higher genetic diversity compared with the long established, well-defined cosmopolitan dog breeds. As the Border Collie seems closer to the Italian breeds than the other cosmopolitan shepherd dogs considered here, a possible utilization of this breed to improve working performance in Italian traditional working shepherd dogs cannot be ignored. The data and information found here can be utilized in the organization of conservation programs planned to reduce inbreeding and to minimize loss of genetic variability. PMID:26245492

  10. 1980 breeding bird censuses

    SciTech Connect

    Raynor, G.S.

    1980-09-01

    As part of a program to characterize the plant and animal life of the Laboratory site and the surrounding region, the two breeding bird censuses originated in 1977 were continued in 1980. Coverage was below that of previous years due to illness and travel of some participants, but 11 trips were made to the BNL plot and 8 to the Westhampton plot. Each was censused by separate teams of three volunteer observers. The number of breeding species and number of territorial males on the BNL plot have progressively declined since 1977 but little change has taken place in either number of territories or species composition on the Westhampton plot.

  11. Defining core habitat of local populations of the gray treefrog (Hyla versicolor) based on choice of oviposition site.

    PubMed

    Johnson, Jarrett R; Semlitsch, Raymond D

    2003-10-01

    Concern over amphibian population declines and loss of terrestrial and aquatic habitat have emphasized the need to define habitat requirements for each stage in a species' life history. The realization that pond-breeding amphibians spend most of their lives in the terrestrial environment suggests the need to protect terrestrial as well as aquatic habitat. Many studies on amphibian populations have focused on emigration from breeding sites to define habitat use; however these studies do not typically elucidate terrestrial activities of adults within the breeding season. We measured colonization rates of artificial pools by gray treefrogs (Hyla versicolor) at multiple distances from natural breeding ponds. We found a non-random distribution of egg deposition among distances, with 95% of eggs deposited within 15 m of the breeding pond. Additionally, we found that the time to first colonization of artificial pools increased with respect to distance. Our results indicate that adult gray treefrogs may travel up to 200 m within a breeding season, and that multiple breeding ponds may be considered part of a single population. We suggest that a minimum core terrestrial habitat of 60 m surrounding breeding sites is appropriate for protection of local populations of gray treefrogs. PMID:12883991

  12. Modern biotechnology and the future of plant breeding

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Genetic improvement of crop plants has been traditionally achieved through conventional plant breeding. The art of plant breeding was developed long before the laws of genetics (the science of heredity) became known. The discovery of the principles of genetics at the turn of the last century boosted...

  13. Increasing the Oleic Acid in Soybean Oil with Plant Breeding

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Increasing the oleic acid content along with decrease in linolenic acid can improve the oxidative stability of soybean oil. Genetic changes in soybean using standard plant breeding practices has resulted in a publicly released a mid-oleic breeding line, N98-4445A, with oil that averages 57% oleic ac...

  14. Status of genetic diversity of U. S. dairy goat breeds

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Genetic diversity underpins the livestock breeders’ ability to improve the production potential of their livestock. Therefore, it is important to periodically assess genetic diversity within a breed. Such an analysis was conducted on U.S. dairy goat breeds: Alpine, LaMancha, Nigerian Dwarf, Nubian, ...

  15. Status of genetic diversity of U. S. dairy goat breeds

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Genetic diversity underpins the livestock breeders’ ability to improve the production potential of their livestock. Therefore, it is important to periodically assess genetic diversity within a breed. Such an analysis was conducted on U.S. dairy goat breeds and this article is an overview of that wo...

  16. Breeding latitude drives individual schedules in a trans-hemispheric migrant bird.

    PubMed

    Conklin, Jesse R; Battley, Phil F; Potter, Murray A; Fox, James W

    2010-01-01

    Despite clear benefits of optimal arrival time on breeding grounds, migration schedules may vary with an individual bird's innate quality, non-breeding habitat or breeding destination. Here, we show that for the bar-tailed godwit (Limosa lapponica baueri), a shorebird that makes the longest known non-stop migratory flights of any bird, timing of migration for individual birds from a non-breeding site in New Zealand was strongly correlated with their specific breeding latitudes in Alaska, USA, a 16,000-18,000 km journey away. Furthermore, this variation carried over even to the southbound return migration, 6 months later, with birds returning to New Zealand in approximately the same order in which they departed. These tightly scheduled movements on a global scale suggest endogenously controlled routines, with breeding site as the primary driver of temporal variation throughout the annual cycle. PMID:20842198

  17. Dynamics of Chytridiomycosis during the Breeding Season in an Australian Alpine Amphibian

    PubMed Central

    Brannelly, Laura A.; Hunter, David A.; Lenger, Daniel; Scheele, Ben C.; Skerratt, Lee F.; Berger, Lee

    2015-01-01

    Understanding disease dynamics during the breeding season of declining amphibian species will improve our understanding of how remnant populations persist with endemic infection, and will assist the development of management techniques to protect disease-threatened species from extinction. We monitored the endangered Litoria verreauxii alpina (alpine treefrog) during the breeding season through capture-mark-recapture (CMR) studies in which we investigated the dynamics of chytridiomycosis in relation to population size in two populations. We found that infection prevalence and intensity increased throughout the breeding season in both populations, but infection prevalence and intensity was higher (3.49 and 2.02 times higher prevalence and intensity, respectively) at the site that had a 90-fold higher population density. This suggests that Bd transmission is density-dependent. Weekly survival probability was related to disease state, with heavily infected animals having the lowest survival. There was low recovery from infection, especially when animals were heavily infected with Bd. Sympatric amphibian species are likely to be reservoir hosts for the disease and can play an important role in the disease ecology of Bd. Although we found 0% prevalence in crayfish (Cherax destructor), we found that a sympatric amphibian (Crinia signifera) maintained 100% infection prevalence at a high intensity throughout the season. Our results demonstrate the importance of including infection intensity into CMR disease analysis in order to fully understand the implications of disease on the amphibian community. We recommend a combined management approach to promote lower population densities and ensure consistent progeny survival. The most effective management strategy to safeguard the persistence of this susceptible species might be to increase habitat area while maintaining a similar sized suitable breeding zone and to increase water flow and area to reduce drought. PMID:26629993

  18. Dynamics of Chytridiomycosis during the Breeding Season in an Australian Alpine Amphibian.

    PubMed

    Brannelly, Laura A; Hunter, David A; Lenger, Daniel; Scheele, Ben C; Skerratt, Lee F; Berger, Lee

    2015-01-01

    Understanding disease dynamics during the breeding season of declining amphibian species will improve our understanding of how remnant populations persist with endemic infection, and will assist the development of management techniques to protect disease-threatened species from extinction. We monitored the endangered Litoria verreauxii alpina (alpine treefrog) during the breeding season through capture-mark-recapture (CMR) studies in which we investigated the dynamics of chytridiomycosis in relation to population size in two populations. We found that infection prevalence and intensity increased throughout the breeding season in both populations, but infection prevalence and intensity was higher (3.49 and 2.02 times higher prevalence and intensity, respectively) at the site that had a 90-fold higher population density. This suggests that Bd transmission is density-dependent. Weekly survival probability was related to disease state, with heavily infected animals having the lowest survival. There was low recovery from infection, especially when animals were heavily infected with Bd. Sympatric amphibian species are likely to be reservoir hosts for the disease and can play an important role in the disease ecology of Bd. Although we found 0% prevalence in crayfish (Cherax destructor), we found that a sympatric amphibian (Crinia signifera) maintained 100% infection prevalence at a high intensity throughout the season. Our results demonstrate the importance of including infection intensity into CMR disease analysis in order to fully understand the implications of disease on the amphibian community. We recommend a combined management approach to promote lower population densities and ensure consistent progeny survival. The most effective management strategy to safeguard the persistence of this susceptible species might be to increase habitat area while maintaining a similar sized suitable breeding zone and to increase water flow and area to reduce drought. PMID:26629993

  19. Predictive Seagrass Habitat Model

    EPA Science Inventory

    Restoration of ecosystem services provided by seagrass habitats in estuaries requires a firm understanding of the modes of action of multiple interacting stressors including nutrients, climate change, coastal land-use change, and habitat modification. We explored the application...

  20. MODELING PHYSICAL HABITAT PARAMETERS

    EPA Science Inventory

    Salmonid populations can be affected by alterations in stream physical habitat. Fish productivity is determined by the stream's physical habitat structure ( channel form, substrate distribution, riparian vegetation), water quality, flow regime and inputs from the watershed (sedim...

  1. Estimating survival and breeding probability for pond-breeding amphibians: a modified robust design

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Bailey, L.L.; Kendall, W.L.; Church, D.R.; Wilbur, H.M.

    2004-01-01

    Many studies of pond-breeding amphibians involve sampling individuals during migration to and from breeding habitats. Interpreting population processes and dynamics from these studies is difficult because (1) only a proportion of the population is observable each season, while an unknown proportion remains unobservable (e.g., non-breeding adults) and (2) not all observable animals are captured. Imperfect capture probability can be easily accommodated in capture?recapture models, but temporary transitions between observable and unobservable states, often referred to as temporary emigration, is known to cause problems in both open- and closed-population models. We develop a multistate mark?recapture (MSMR) model, using an open-robust design that permits one entry and one exit from the study area per season. Our method extends previous temporary emigration models (MSMR with an unobservable state) in two ways. First, we relax the assumption of demographic closure (no mortality) between consecutive (secondary) samples, allowing estimation of within-pond survival. Also, we add the flexibility to express survival probability of unobservable individuals (e.g., ?non-breeders?) as a function of the survival probability of observable animals while in the same, terrestrial habitat. This allows for potentially different annual survival probabilities for observable and unobservable animals. We apply our model to a relictual population of eastern tiger salamanders (Ambystoma tigrinum tigrinum). Despite small sample sizes, demographic parameters were estimated with reasonable precision. We tested several a priori biological hypotheses and found evidence for seasonal differences in pond survival. Our methods could be applied to a variety of pond-breeding species and other taxa where individuals are captured entering or exiting a common area (e.g., spawning or roosting area, hibernacula).

  2. Environmental variables associated with immature stage habitats of culicidae collected in aboriginal villages in Pahang, Malaysia.

    PubMed

    Ali, Wan Najdah Wan Mohamad; Ahmad, Rohani; Nor, Zurainee Mohamed; Ismail, Zamree; Ibrahim, Mohd Noor; Hadi, Azahari Abdul; Hassan, Rahimi; Lim, Lee Han

    2012-11-01

    Many of the most widely spread vector-borne diseases are water related, in that the mosquito vectors concerned breed or pass part of their lifecycle in or close to water. A major reason for the study of mosquito larval ecology is to gather information on environmental variables that may determine the species of mosquitoes and the distribution of larvae in the breeding habitats. Larval surveillance studies were conducted six times between May 2008 and October 2009 in Pos Lenjang, Kuala Lipis, Pahang. Twelve environmental variables were recorded for each sampling site, and samples of mosquito larvae were collected. Larval survey studies showed that anopheline and culicine larvae were collected from 79 and 67 breeding sites, respectively. All breeding sites were classified into nine habitat groups. Culicine larvae were found in all habitat groups, suggesting that they are very versatile and highly adaptable to different types of environment. Rock pools or water pockets with clear water formed on the bank of rivers and waterfalls were the most common habitats associated with An. maculatus. Environmental variables influence the suitability of aquatic habitats for anopheline and culicine larvae, but not significantly associated with the occurrence of both larvae genera (p>0.05). This study provides information on mosquito ecology in relation to breeding habitats that will be useful in designing and implementing larval control operations. PMID:23413702

  3. Haploids: Constraints and opportunities in plant breeding.

    PubMed

    Dwivedi, Sangam L; Britt, Anne B; Tripathi, Leena; Sharma, Shivali; Upadhyaya, Hari D; Ortiz, Rodomiro

    2015-11-01

    The discovery of haploids in higher plants led to the use of doubled haploid (DH) technology in plant breeding. This article provides the state of the art on DH technology including the induction and identification of haploids, what factors influence haploid induction, molecular basis of microspore embryogenesis, the genetics underpinnings of haploid induction and its use in plant breeding, particularly to fix traits and unlock genetic variation. Both in vitro and in vivo methods have been used to induce haploids that are thereafter chromosome doubled to produce DH. Various heritable factors contribute to the successful induction of haploids, whose genetics is that of a quantitative trait. Genomic regions associated with in vitro and in vivo DH production were noted in various crops with the aid of DNA markers. It seems that F2 plants are the most suitable for the induction of DH lines than F1 plants. Identifying putative haploids is a key issue in haploid breeding. DH technology in Brassicas and cereals, such as barley, maize, rice, rye and wheat, has been improved and used routinely in cultivar development, while in other food staples such as pulses and root crops the technology has not reached to the stage leading to its application in plant breeding. The centromere-mediated haploid induction system has been used in Arabidopsis, but not yet in crops. Most food staples are derived from genomic resources-rich crops, including those with sequenced reference genomes. The integration of genomic resources with DH technology provides new opportunities for the improving selection methods, maximizing selection gains and accelerate cultivar development. Marker-aided breeding and DH technology have been used to improve host plant resistance in barley, rice, and wheat. Multinational seed companies are using DH technology in large-scale production of inbred lines for further development of hybrid cultivars, particularly in maize. The public sector provides support to

  4. Genomics to feed a switchgrass breeding program

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Development of improved cultivars is one of three pillars, along with sustainable production and efficient conversion, required for dedicated cellulosic bioenergy crops to succeed. Breeding new cultivars is a long, slow process requiring patience, dedication, and motivation to realize gains and adva...

  5. Interspecific Sorghum Breeding Using S. macrospermum

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Grain sorghum [Sorghum bicolor (L.) Moench] has been improved by public and private breeding programs utilizing germplasm mostly from within the species. Different cross-incompatibility mechanisms have prevented its hybridization with species in other sections of the genus. These incompatibilities...

  6. Traditional breeding and cultivar development (potato)

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Traditional breeding allows for the genetic ‘reshuffling’ of genes and their recombination into new genotypes that may carry the desired assemblage of resistance and agronomic traits necessary for release as a new cultivar. While molecular biology techniques can be useful for improving upon a weakne...

  7. Determining Ploidy Level in Guayule Breeding Populations

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The domestication and cultivation of guayule (Parthenium argentatum Gray) as a perennial natural rubber crop has been intermittent in the southwestern United States, thus its continued genetic improvement through modern plant breeding is vitally needed to realize yield potential and suitability for ...

  8. Short communication: Improving accuracy of predicting breeding values in Brazilian Holstein population by adding data from Nordic and French Holstein populations.

    PubMed

    Li, X; Lund, M S; Zhang, Q; Costa, C N; Ducrocq, V; Su, G

    2016-06-01

    The present study investigated the improvement of prediction reliabilities for 3 production traits in Brazilian Holsteins that had no genotype information by adding information from Nordic and French Holstein bulls that had genotypes. The estimated across-country genetic correlations (ranging from 0.604 to 0.726) indicated that an important genotype by environment interaction exists between Brazilian and Nordic (or Nordic and French) populations. Prediction reliabilities for Brazilian genotyped bulls were greatly increased by including data of Nordic and French bulls, and a 2-trait single-step genomic BLUP performed much better than the corresponding pedigree-based BLUP. However, only a minor improvement in prediction reliabilities was observed in nongenotyped Brazilian cows. The results indicate that although there is a large genotype by environment interaction, inclusion of a foreign reference population can improve accuracy of genetic evaluation for the Brazilian Holstein population. However, a Brazilian reference population is necessary to obtain a more accurate genomic evaluation. PMID:27040784

  9. Breeding Cold Hardy Begonias

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Hardy begonia cultivars have potential as a new crop for Southern nurseries. Current begonia breeding efforts are focused on sections Begonia and Pritzelia. Diverse begonia germplasm has been collected to study fertility and hardiness.To date cold hardy germplasm which has produced viable seeds inc...

  10. Hop Cultivars and Breeding

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Pest management decision making in hops varies among cultivars. Historically, the primary objective of hop breeding programs has been to increase the yield or characteristics associated with either bittering (high alpha-acids) or aroma (unique volatile oil profiles) cultivars. Other factors consid...

  11. Intra-annual variation in habitat choice by an endemic woodpecker: Implications for forest management and conservation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Garcia-del-Rey, Eduardo; Fernández-Palacios, José María; Muñoz, Pascual Gil

    2009-09-01

    The Canary Islands great spotted woodpecker Dendrocopos major canariensis is an endemic bird restricted to the Pinus canariensis forests of Tenerife and Gran Canaria. Classification tree models were applied to explore the relationship of the occurrence of this picid and habitat variables between two contrasting periods (breeding vs. non-breeding seasons) and for the entire annual cycle. During the reproductive period the availability of mature trees (DBH > 60 cm), and snags (dead trees), for nesting and roosting, characterize the breeding territory. Outside the breeding season the choice of locations was driven by a tree cover larger than 28.5% and the presence of trees taller than 8.5 m on average, a pattern explained by the availability of pine seeds in the cones of well-developed canopies, and less so by predation risk. Overall, during the annual cycle, well-developed canopy sites influenced the presence of this picidae (tree cover > 38%) and on more open sites (<38%) the presence of mature trees (DBH> 60 cm) became the second most important predictor of occurrence. We suggest that food abundance and availability could be the ultimate factor explaining the intra-annual variation observed, with the availability of snags being an important factor during nesting. In the range of this endemic, we recommend selective cuts in pine plantations, to allow the trees to set seed and improve their crops, minimizing the elimination of snags, and killing some large pine trees if the priority is to expand the distributional range of the woodpecker.

  12. Advances in Japanese pear breeding in Japan

    PubMed Central

    Saito, Toshihiro

    2016-01-01

    The Japanese pear (Pyrus pyrifolia Nakai) is one of the most widely grown fruit trees in Japan, and it has been used throughout Japan’s history. The commercial production of pears increased rapidly with the successive discoveries of the chance seedling cultivars ‘Chojuro’ and ‘Nijisseiki’ around 1890, and the development of new cultivars has continued since 1915. The late-maturing, leading cultivars ‘Niitaka’ and ‘Shinko’ were released during the initial breeding stage. Furthermore, systematic breeding by the Horticultural Research Station (currently, NARO Institute of Fruit Tree Science, National Agriculture and Food Research Organization (NIFTS)) began in 1935, which mainly aimed to improve fruit quality by focusing on flesh texture and black spot disease resistance. To date, 22 cultivars have been released, including ‘Kosui’, ‘Hosui’, and ‘Akizuki’, which are current leading cultivars from the breeding program. Four induced mutant cultivars induced by gamma irradiation, which exhibit some resistance to black spot disease, were released from the Institute of Radiation Breeding. Among these cultivars, ‘Gold Nijisseiki’ has become a leading cultivar. Moreover, ‘Nansui’ from the Nagano prefectural institute breeding program was released, and it has also become a leading cultivar. Current breeding objectives at NIFTS mainly combine superior fruit quality with traits related to labor and cost reduction, multiple disease resistance, or self-compatibility. Regarding future breeding, marker-assisted selection for each trait, QTL analyses, genome-wide association studies, and genomic selection analyses are currently in progress. PMID:27069390

  13. Habitat fragmentation and reproductive success: a structural equation modelling approach.

    PubMed

    Le Tortorec, Eric; Helle, Samuli; Käyhkö, Niina; Suorsa, Petri; Huhta, Esa; Hakkarainen, Harri

    2013-09-01

    1. There is great interest on the effects of habitat fragmentation, whereby habitat is lost and the spatial configuration of remaining habitat patches is altered, on individual breeding performance. However, we still lack consensus of how this important process affects reproductive success, and whether its effects are mainly due to reduced fecundity or nestling survival. 2. The main reason for this may be the way that habitat fragmentation has been previously modelled. Studies have treated habitat loss and altered spatial configuration as two independent processes instead of as one hierarchical and interdependent process, and therefore have not been able to consider the relative direct and indirect effects of habitat loss and altered spatial configuration. 3. We investigated how habitat (i.e. old forest) fragmentation, caused by intense forest harvesting at the territory and landscape scales, is associated with the number of fledged offspring of an area-sensitive passerine, the Eurasian treecreeper (Certhia familiaris). We used structural equation modelling (SEM) to examine the complex hierarchical associations between habitat loss and altered spatial configuration on the number of fledged offspring, by controlling for individual condition and weather conditions during incubation. 4. Against generally held expectations, treecreeper reproductive success did not show a significant association with habitat fragmentation measured at the territory scale. Instead, our analyses suggested that an increasing amount of habitat at the landscape scale caused a significant increase in nest predation rates, leading to reduced reproductive success. This effect operated directly on nest predation rates, instead of acting indirectly through altered spatial configuration. 5. Because habitat amount and configuration are inherently strongly collinear, particularly when multiple scales are considered, our study demonstrates the usefulness of a SEM approach for hierarchical partitioning

  14. Life history differences influence the impacts of drought on two pond-breeding salamanders.

    PubMed

    Anderson, Thomas L; Ousterhout, Brittany H; Peterman, William E; Drake, Dana L; Semlitsch, Raymond D

    2015-10-01

    . Consideration of the spatial network and configuration of habitat patches that act as refuges under extreme environmental conditions will improve conservation efforts, such as the placement of permanent ponds for aquatic organisms. A better awareness of species-specific tolerances to environmental filters such as drought can lead to improved management recommendations to conserve and promote habitat for a greater diversity of species across landscapes of spatially connected populations. PMID:26591455

  15. Urban Areas. Habitat Pac.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Fish and Wildlife Service (Dept. of Interior), Washington, DC.

    The materials in this educational packet are designed for use with students in grades 4 through 7. They consist of an overview, teaching guides and student data sheets for three activities, and a poster. The overview discusses the city as an ecosystem, changing urban habitats, urban wildlife habitats, values of wildlife, habitat management, and…

  16. Biodiversity: Habitat Suitability

    EPA Science Inventory

    Habitat suitability quantifies the relationship between species and habitat, and is evaluated according to the species’ fitness (i.e. proportion of birth rate to death rate). Even though it might maximize evolutionary success, species are not always in habitat that optimizes fit...

  17. Comparative habitat use in a juniper woodland bird community

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Pavlacky, D.C., Jr.; Anderson, S.H.

    2004-01-01

    We compared vegetation structure used by 14 bird species during the 1998 and 1999 breeding seasons to determine what habitat features best accounted for habitat division and community organization in Utah juniper (Juniperus osteosperma) woodlands of southwestern Wyoming. Habitat use was quantified by measuring 24 habitat variables in 461 bird-centered quadrats, each 0.04 ha in size. Using discriminant function analysis, we differentiated between habitat used by 14 bird species along 3 habitat dimensions: (1) variation in shrub cover, overstory juniper cover, mature tree density, understory height, and decadent tree density; (2) a gradient composed of elevation and forb cover; and (3) variation in grass cover, tree height, seedling/sapling cover, and bare ground/rock cover. Of 14 species considered, 9 exhibited substantial habitat partitioning: Mourning Dove (Zenaida macroura), Bewick's Wren (Thryomanes bewickii), Blue-gray Gnatcatcher (Polioptila caerulea), Mountain Bluebird (Sialia currucoides), Plumbeous Vireo (Vireo plumbeus), Green-tailed Towhee (Pipilo chlorurus), Brewer's Sparrow (Spizella breweri), Dark-eyed Junco (Junco hyemalis), and Cassin's Finch (Carpodacus cassinii). Our results indicate juniper bird communities of southwestern Wyoming are organized along a 3-dimensional habitat gradient composed of woodland maturity, elevation, and juniper recruitment. Because juniper birds partition habitat along successional and altitudinal gradients, indiscriminate woodland clearing as well as continued fire suppression will alter species composition. Restoration efforts should ensure that all successional stages of juniper woodland are present on the landscape.

  18. Evaluating habitat selection with radio-telemetry triangulation error

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Samuel, M.D.; Kenow, K.P.

    1992-01-01

    Radio-telemetry triangulation errors result in the mislocation of animals and misclassification of habitat use. We present analytical methods that provide improved estimates of habitat use when misclassification probabilities can be determined. When misclassification probabilities cannot be determined, we use random subsamples from the error distribution of an estimated animal location to improve habitat use estimates. We conducted Monte Carlo simulations to evaluate the effects of this subsampling method, triangulation error, number of animal locations, habitat availability, and habitat complexity on bias and variation in habitat use estimates. Results for the subsampling method are illustrated using habitat selection by redhead ducks (Aythya americana ). We recommend the subsampling method with a minimum of 50 random points to reduce problems associated with habitat misclassification.

  19. Evaluating habitat selection with radio-telemetry triangulation error

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Samuel, M.D.; Kenow, K.P.

    1992-01-01

    Radio-telemetry triangulation errors result in the mislocation of animals and misclassification of habitat use. We present analytical methods that provide improved estimates of habitat use when misclassification probabilities can be determined. When misclassification probabilities cannot be determined, we use random subsamples from the error distribution of an estimated animal location to improve habitat use estimates. We conducted Monte Carlo simulations to evaluate the effects of this subsampling method, triangulation error, number of animal locations, habitat availability, and habitat complexity on bias and variation in habitat use estimates. Results for the subsampling method are illustrated using habitat selection by redhead ducks (Aythya americana). We recommend the subsampling method with a minimum of 50 random points to reduce problems associated with habitat misclassification.

  20. Integrating spatially explicit indices of abundance and habitat quality: an applied example for greater sage-grouse management

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Coates, Peter S.; Casazza, Michael L.; Ricca, Mark A.; Brussee, Brianne E.; Blomberg, Erik J.; Gustafson, K. Benjamin; Overton, Cory T.; Davis, Dawn M.; Niell, Lara E.; Espinosa, Shawn P.; Gardner, Scott C.; Delehanty, David J.

    2016-01-01

    Predictive species distributional models are a cornerstone of wildlife conservation planning. Constructing such models requires robust underpinning science that integrates formerly disparate data types to achieve effective species management. Greater sage-grouse Centrocercus urophasianus, hereafter “sage-grouse” populations are declining throughout sagebrush-steppe ecosystems in North America, particularly within the Great Basin, which heightens the need for novel management tools that maximize use of available information. Herein, we improve upon existing species distribution models by combining information about sage-grouse habitat quality, distribution, and abundance from multiple data sources. To measure habitat, we created spatially explicit maps depicting habitat selection indices (HSI) informed by > 35 500 independent telemetry locations from > 1600 sage-grouse collected over 15 years across much of the Great Basin. These indices were derived from models that accounted for selection at different spatial scales and seasons. A region-wide HSI was calculated using the HSI surfaces modelled for 12 independent subregions and then demarcated into distinct habitat quality classes. We also employed a novel index to describe landscape patterns of sage-grouse abundance and space use (AUI). The AUI is a probabilistic composite of: (i) breeding density patterns based on the spatial configuration of breeding leks and associated trends in male attendance; and (ii) year-round patterns of space use indexed by the decreasing probability of use with increasing distance to leks. The continuous AUI surface was then reclassified into two classes representing high and low/no use and abundance. Synthesis and applications. Using the example of sage-grouse, we demonstrate how the joint application of indices of habitat selection, abundance, and space use derived from multiple data sources yields a composite map that can guide effective allocation of management intensity across

  1. Clark's Nutcracker Breeding Season Space Use and Foraging Behavior.

    PubMed

    Schaming, Taza D

    2016-01-01

    Considering the entire life history of a species is fundamental to developing effective conservation strategies. Decreasing populations of five-needle white pines may be leading to the decline of Clark's nutcrackers (Nucifraga columbiana). These birds are important seed dispersers for at least ten conifer species in the western U.S., including whitebark pine (Pinus albicaulis), an obligate mutualist of Clark's nutcrackers. For effective conservation of both Clark's nutcrackers and whitebark pine, it is essential to ensure stability of Clark's nutcracker populations. My objectives were to examine Clark's nutcracker breeding season home range size, territoriality, habitat selection, and foraging behavior in the southern Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem, a region where whitebark pine is declining. I radio-tracked Clark's nutcrackers in 2011, a population-wide nonbreeding year following a low whitebark pine cone crop, and 2012, a breeding year following a high cone crop. Results suggest Douglas-fir (Pseudotsuga menziesii) communities are important habitat for Clark's nutcrackers because they selected it for home ranges. In contrast, they did not select whitebark pine habitat. However, Clark's nutcrackers did adjust their use of whitebark pine habitat between years, suggesting that, in some springs, whitebark pine habitat may be used more than previously expected. Newly extracted Douglas-fir seeds were an important food source both years. On the other hand, cached seeds made up a relatively lower proportion of the diet in 2011, suggesting cached seeds are not a reliable spring food source. Land managers focus on restoring whitebark pine habitat with the assumption that Clark's nutcrackers will be available to continue seed dispersal. In the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem, Clark's nutcracker populations may be more likely to be retained year-round when whitebark pine restoration efforts are located adjacent to Douglas-fir habitat. By extrapolation, whitebark pine restoration

  2. Habitat suitability index model for brook trout in streams of the Southern Blue Ridge Province: Surrogate variables, model evaluation, and suggested improvements

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Schmitt, C.J.; Lemly, A.D.; Winger, P.V.

    1993-01-01

    Data from several sources were collated and analyzed by correlation, regression, and principal components analysis to define surrrogate variables for use in the brook trout (Salvelinus fontinalis) habitat suitability index (HSI) model, and to evaluate the applicability of the model for assessing habitat in high elevation streams of the southern Blue Ridge Province (SBRP). In all data sets examined, pH and alkalinity were highly correlated, and both declined with increasing elevation; however, the magnitude of the decline varied with underlying rock formations and other factors, thereby restricting the utility of elevation as a surrogate for pH. In the data sets that contained biological information, brook trout abundance (as biomass, density, or both) tended to increase with elevation and decrease with the abundance of rainbow trout (Oncorhynchus mykiss), and was not significantly correlated (P >0.05) with the abundance of most benthic macroinvertebrate taxa normally construed as important in the diet of brook trout. Using multiple linear regression, the authors formulated an alternative HSI model A? based on point estimates of gradient, pH, elevation, stream width, and rainbow trout density A? which explained 40 to 50 percent of the variance in brook trout density in 256 stream reaches. Although logically developed, the present U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service HSI model, proposed in 1982, seems deficient in several areas, especially when applied to SBRP streams. The authors recommend that the water quality component in the model be updated and reevaluated, focusing on the differential sensitivities of each life stage, the stochastic nature of the water quality variables, and the possible existence of habitat requirements that differ among brook trout strains.

  3. Predicting cerulean warbler habitat use in the Cumberland Mountains of Tennessee

    SciTech Connect

    Buehler, D.A.; Welton, M.J.; Beachy, T.A.

    2006-12-15

    We developed a habitat model to predict cerulean warbler (Dendroica cerulea) habitat availability in the Cumberland Mountains of eastern Tennessee. We used 7 remotely sensed vegetation and topographic landform explanatory variables and known locations of territorial male cerulean warblers mapped in 2003 as the response variable to develop a Mahalanobis distance statistic model of potential habitat. We evaluated the accuracy of the model based on field surveys for ceruleans during the 2004 breeding season. The model performed well with an 80% correct classification of cerulean presence based on the validation data, although prediction of absence was only 54% correct. We extrapolated from potential habitat to cerulean abundance based on density estimates from territory mapping on 8 20-ha plots in 2005. Over the 200,000-ha study area, we estimated there were 80,584 ha of potential habitat, capable of supporting about 36,500 breeding pairs. We applied the model to the 21,609-ha state-owned Royal Blue Wildlife Management Area to evaluate the potential effects of coal surface mining as one example of a potential conflict between land use and cerulean warbler conservation. Our models suggest coal surface mining could remove 2,954 ha of cerulean habitat on Royal Blue Wildlife Management Area and could displace 2,540 breeding pairs (23% of the Royal Blue population). A comprehensive conservation strategy is needed to address potential and realized habitat loss and degradation on the breeding grounds, during migration, and on the wintering grounds.

  4. How much habitat management is needed to meet mallard production objectives?

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Cowardin, L.M.; Shaffer, T.L.; Kraft, K.M.

    1995-01-01

    We used results from simulation models to demonstrate the benefit-cost ratios of habitat management to increase the number of mallard (Anas platyrhynchos) recruits produced. The models were applied to hypothetical 2-habitat landscapes comprised of managed and unmanaged habitat. Managed habitats were predator barrier fencing and CRP cover; unmanaged habitat was grassland. As the amount of managed cover increased, the production curve rose rapidly and leveled off. If 2 managed habitats are added to a landscape, the cover can compete for available nesting hens, thus negating the benefits of 1 of the covers. After converting benefits and costs to dollars, we determined the point at which maximum net benefit occurs. We present an equation that can be used to determine the maximum net benefit of a management treatment given the size of the breeding population and the values of costs and benefits. Our examples demonstrate that, on local areas, it is inefficient to spend money for habitat management once maximum net benefit has been attained. If desired production can not be attained efficiently on an area, the manager can invest effort on alternative areas with greater management potential. If recruitment is inadequate to maintain a stable population, managers should manage to increase recruitment before attempting to attract additional breeding pairs. If recruitment more than maintains the breeding population, managers should attempt to attract additional breeding pairs to the area.

  5. Spatial distribution and ecological niches of non-breeding planktivorous petrels

    PubMed Central

    Navarro, Joan; Cardador, Laura; Brown, Ruth; Phillips, Richard A.

    2015-01-01

    According to niche theory, mechanisms exist that allow co-existence of organisms that would otherwise compete for the same prey and other resources. How seabirds cope with potential competition during the non-breeding period is poorly documented, particularly for small species. Here we investigate for the first time the potential role of spatial, environmental (habitat) and trophic (isotopic) segregation as niche-partitioning mechanisms during the non-breeding season for four species of highly abundant, zooplanktivorous seabird that breed sympatrically in the Southern Ocean. Spatial segregation was found to be the main partitioning mechanism; even for the two sibling species of diving petrel, which spent the non-breeding period in overlapping areas, there was evidence from distribution and stable isotope ratios for differences in habitat use and diving depth. PMID:26165162

  6. Spatial distribution and ecological niches of non-breeding planktivorous petrels.

    PubMed

    Navarro, Joan; Cardador, Laura; Brown, Ruth; Phillips, Richard A

    2015-01-01

    According to niche theory, mechanisms exist that allow co-existence of organisms that would otherwise compete for the same prey and other resources. How seabirds cope with potential competition during the non-breeding period is poorly documented, particularly for small species. Here we investigate for the first time the potential role of spatial, environmental (habitat) and trophic (isotopic) segregation as niche-partitioning mechanisms during the non-breeding season for four species of highly abundant, zooplanktivorous seabird that breed sympatrically in the Southern Ocean. Spatial segregation was found to be the main partitioning mechanism; even for the two sibling species of diving petrel, which spent the non-breeding period in overlapping areas, there was evidence from distribution and stable isotope ratios for differences in habitat use and diving depth. PMID:26165162

  7. Allele mining and enhanced genetic recombination for rice breeding.

    PubMed

    Leung, Hei; Raghavan, Chitra; Zhou, Bo; Oliva, Ricardo; Choi, Il Ryong; Lacorte, Vanica; Jubay, Mona Liza; Cruz, Casiana Vera; Gregorio, Glenn; Singh, Rakesh Kumar; Ulat, Victor Jun; Borja, Frances Nikki; Mauleon, Ramil; Alexandrov, Nickolai N; McNally, Kenneth L; Sackville Hamilton, Ruaraidh

    2015-12-01

    Traditional rice varieties harbour a large store of genetic diversity with potential to accelerate rice improvement. For a long time, this diversity maintained in the International Rice Genebank has not been fully used because of a lack of genome information. The publication of the first reference genome of Nipponbare by the International Rice Genome Sequencing Project (IRGSP) marked the beginning of a systematic exploration and use of rice diversity for genetic research and breeding. Since then, the Nipponbare genome has served as the reference for the assembly of many additional genomes. The recently completed 3000 Rice Genomes Project together with the public database (SNP-Seek) provides a new genomic and data resource that enables the identification of useful accessions for breeding. Using disease resistance traits as case studies, we demonstrated the power of allele mining in the 3,000 genomes for extracting accessions from the GeneBank for targeted phenotyping. Although potentially useful landraces can now be identified, their use in breeding is often hindered by unfavourable linkages. Efficient breeding designs are much needed to transfer the useful diversity to breeding. Multi-parent Advanced Generation InterCross (MAGIC) is a breeding design to produce highly recombined populations. The MAGIC approach can be used to generate pre-breeding populations with increased genotypic diversity and reduced linkage drag. Allele mining combined with a multi-parent breeding design can help convert useful diversity into breeding-ready genetic resources. PMID:26606925

  8. Mosquito larval habitats and public health implications in Abeokuta, Ogun State, Nigeria.

    PubMed

    Adeleke, M A; Mafiana, C F; Idowu, A B; Adekunle, M F; Sam-Wobo, S O

    2008-04-01

    The larval habitats of mosquitoes were investigated in Abeokuta, Nigeria in order to determine the breeding sites of the existing mosquito fauna and its possible public health implications on the residents of the City. The habitats were sampled between August 2005 and July 2006 using plastic dippers and a pipette. The habitats were grouped as ground pools/ponds, gutters/open drains, tyres, domestic containers and treeholes/ leaf axils. Ten species of mosquitoes were encountered in the five habitats namely Mansonia africana, M. uniformis, Culex quinquefasciatus, Aedes aegypti, Ae. albopictus, Ae. vittatus, Cx tigripes, Anopheles gambiae s.l., An. funestus and Eretmapodite clnysogaster. Ae. aegypti bred in all the habitats sampled while Cx quinquefasciatus bred in four habitats except tree holes/leaf axils. An. gambiae s.l and Ae. albopictus occurred in three habitats while other species bred only in one or two habitats. Ground pools and domestic containers recorded the highest number of species followed by gutters/open drains. Tree holes/leaf axils was the least preferred habitat with the lowest number of species occurrence. However, statistical analysis revealed non-significant difference in species occurrence in the five habitats. The availability of the habitats to support the breeding of Aedes, Culex and Anopheles, which are known vectors of urban yellow fever, lymphatic filariasis and malaria suggest that the residents ofAbeokuta City are at risk of mosquito-borne diseases. It is important that residents of the City are enlighten on the environmental factors that contribute to mosquito breeding and that the Government should institute proper sanitation measures to reduce mosquito breeding sites. PMID:18846789

  9. Biotechnology and apple breeding in Japan.

    PubMed

    Igarashi, Megumi; Hatsuyama, Yoshimichi; Harada, Takeo; Fukasawa-Akada, Tomoko

    2016-01-01

    Apple is a fruit crop of significant economic importance, and breeders world wide continue to develop novel cultivars with improved characteristics. The lengthy juvenile period and the large field space required to grow apple populations have imposed major limitations on breeding. Various molecular biological techniques have been employed to make apple breeding easier. Transgenic technology has facilitated the development of apples with resistance to fungal or bacterial diseases, improved fruit quality, or root stocks with better rooting or dwarfing ability. DNA markers for disease resistance (scab, powdery mildew, fire-blight, Alternaria blotch) and fruit skin color have also been developed, and marker-assisted selection (MAS) has been employed in breeding programs. In the last decade, genomic sequences and chromosome maps of various cultivars have become available, allowing the development of large SNP arrays, enabling efficient QTL mapping and genomic selection (GS). In recent years, new technologies for genetic improvement, such as trans-grafting, virus vectors, and genome-editing, have emerged. Using these techniques, no foreign genes are present in the final product, and some of them show considerable promise for application to apple breeding. PMID:27069388

  10. Biotechnology and apple breeding in Japan

    PubMed Central

    Igarashi, Megumi; Hatsuyama, Yoshimichi; Harada, Takeo; Fukasawa-Akada, Tomoko

    2016-01-01

    Apple is a fruit crop of significant economic importance, and breeders world wide continue to develop novel cultivars with improved characteristics. The lengthy juvenile period and the large field space required to grow apple populations have imposed major limitations on breeding. Various molecular biological techniques have been employed to make apple breeding easier. Transgenic technology has facilitated the development of apples with resistance to fungal or bacterial diseases, improved fruit quality, or root stocks with better rooting or dwarfing ability. DNA markers for disease resistance (scab, powdery mildew, fire-blight, Alternaria blotch) and fruit skin color have also been developed, and marker-assisted selection (MAS) has been employed in breeding programs. In the last decade, genomic sequences and chromosome maps of various cultivars have become available, allowing the development of large SNP arrays, enabling efficient QTL mapping and genomic selection (GS). In recent years, new technologies for genetic improvement, such as trans-grafting, virus vectors, and genome-editing, have emerged. Using these techniques, no foreign genes are present in the final product, and some of them show considerable promise for application to apple breeding. PMID:27069388

  11. Breeding bird response to cattle grazing of a cottonwood bottomland

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Sedgwick, James A.; Knopf, Fritz L.

    1987-01-01

    We studied avian habitat relationships and the impact of grazing on breeding densities of selected migratory birds in a plains cottonwood (Populus sargentii) bottomland in northeastern Colorado. Five 16-ha plots served as controls and 5 were fenced and fall-grazed October-November 1982-84 following a season of pre-treatment study in the spring of 1982. We focused our analysis on bird species directly dependent on the grass-herb-shrub layer of vegetation for foraging, nesting, or both. The guild included house wren (Troglodytes aedon), brown thrasher (Toxostoma rufum), American robin (Turdus migratorius), common yellowthroat (Geothlypis trichas), yellow-breasted chat (Icteria virens), and rufous-sided towhee (Pipilo erythropthalmus). Moderate, late-fall grazing had no detectable impact on calculated densities of any of the 6 species, implying that proper seasonal grazing of a cottonwood floodplain is, at least initially (3 years), compatible with migratory bird use of a site for breeding. Habitat associations suggested that common yellowthroats and yellow-breasted chats were most unique and most likely to respond negatively to higher levels of grazing. We suggest that these latter 2 species are appropriate ecological indicators of the quality of ground-shrub vegetation as breeding bird habitats in lowland floodplains of the Great Plains.

  12. Assemblages of breeding birds as indicators of grassland condition

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Browder, S.F.; Johnson, D.H.; Ball, I.J.

    2002-01-01

    We developed a measure of biological integrity for grasslands (GI) based on the most influential habitat types in the Prairie Pothole Region of North Dakota. GI is based on proportions of habitat types and the relationships of these habitat types to breeding birds. Habitat types were identified by digital aerial photography, verified on the ground, and quantified using GIS, We then developed an index to GI based on the presence or abundance of breeding bird species. Species abundance data were obtained from 3 min roadside point counts at 889 points in 44, 4050 ha study plots over a 2-year period. Using a modified North American Breeding Bird Survey protocol, species were recorded in each of four quadrants at each point. Fifty species selected for analysis included all grassland species that occurred in at least 15 quadrants and all other bird species that occurred in at least 1 % of quadrants. We constructed preliminary models using data from each of the 2 years, then tested their predictive ability by cross-validation with data from the other year. These cross-validation tests indicated that the index consistently predicted grassland integrity. The final four models (presence and abundance models at 200 and 400 m scales) included only those species that were statistically significant (P ??? 0.05) in all preliminary models. Finally, we interpreted the components of the indices by examining associations between individual species and habitat types. Logistic regression identified 386 statistically significant relationships between species and habitat types at 200 and 400m scales. This method, though labor-intensive, successfully uses the presence of grassland-dependent species and absence of species associated with woody vegetation or cropland to provide an index to grassland integrity. Once regional associations of species with habitat types have been identified, such indices can be applied relatively inexpensively to monitor grassland integrity over large

  13. Assemblages of breeding birds as indicators of grassland condition

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Browder, S.F.; Johnson, D.H.; Ball, I.J.

    2002-01-01

    We developed a measure of biological integrity for grasslands (GI) based on the most influential habitat types in the Prairie Pothole Region of North Dakota. GI is based on proportions of habitat types and the relationships of these habitat types to breeding birds. Habitat types were identified by digital aerial photography, verified on the ground, and quantified using GIS. We then developed an index to GI based on the presence or abundance of breeding bird species. Species abundance data were obtained from 3 min roadside point counts at 889 points in 44, 4050 ha study plots over a 2-year period. Using a modified North American Breeding Bird Survey protocol, species were recorded in each of four quadrants at each point. Fifty species selected for analysis included all grassland species that occurred in at least 15 quadrants and all other bird species that occurred in at least 1% of quadrants. We constructed preliminary models using data from each of the 2 years, then tested their predictive ability by cross-validation with data from the other year. These cross-validation tests indicated that the index consistently predicted grassland integrity. The final four models (presence and abundance models at 200 and 400 m scales) included only those species that were statistically significant (P 0.05) in all preliminary models. Finally we interpreted the components of the indices by examining associations between individual species and habitat types. Logistic regression identified 386 statistically significant relationships between species and habitat types at 200 and 400 m scales. This method, though labor-intensive, successfully uses the presence of grassland-dependent species and absence of species associated with woody vegetation or cropland to provide an index to grassland integrity. Once regional associations of species with habitat types have been identified, such indices can be applied relatively inexpensively to monitor grassland integrity over large geographic

  14. NASDA next generation aquatic habitat for space shuttle and ISS

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Masukawa, M.; Ochiai, T.; Kamigaichi, S.; Ishioka, N.; Uchida, S.; Kono, Y.; Sakimura, T.

    2003-10-01

    The National Space Development Agency of Japan (NASDA) has more than 20 years of experience developing aquatic animal experiment facilities. We are now studying the next-generation aquatic animal experiment facility or the Aquatic Habitat (AQH) for both Space Shuttle and International Space Station use. A prototype breeding system was designed and tested. Medaka adult fish were able to mate and spawn in this closed circulatory breeding system, and the larvae grewto adult fish and spawned on the 45th day after hatching. The water quality-control system using nitrifying bacteria worked well throughout the medaka breeding test. For amphibians, we also conducted the African clawed toad ( Xenopus laevis) breeding test with the same specimen chambers, although a part of circulation loop was opened to air. Xenopus larvae grew and completed metamorphosis successfully in the small specimen chamber. The first metamorphic climax started on the 30th day and was completed on the 38th day.

  15. A Qualitative Evidence of the Breeding Sites of Anopheles arabiensis Patton (Diptera: Culicidae) in and Around Kassala Town, Eastern Sudan

    PubMed Central

    Hamza, Asma Mahmoud; El Rayah, El Amin

    2016-01-01

    Anopheles arabiensis Patton (Diptera: Culicidae) is considered the most efficient malaria vector in eastern Sudan. This study aims to characterize the breeding sites of An. arabiensis throughout the year in and around Kassala town, eastern Sudan. Diverse larval habitat types were visited and characterized based on the habitat type and chemical composition. Mosquito larvae were found in many diverse habitats. During the rainy season, rain pools and water bodies created by the seasonal Gash River serve as the main breeding sites. In the dry season, irrigation canals, seepage from water pipes, neglected wells, artificial containers, and man-made ditches serve as the main breeding sites. Breeding water showed a pH of 7.9 and a low concentration of the total dissolved salts. The results of this study may be considered in planning and implementing larval control programs in the area. PMID:27547039

  16. A Qualitative Evidence of the Breeding Sites of Anopheles arabiensis Patton (Diptera: Culicidae) in and Around Kassala Town, Eastern Sudan.

    PubMed

    Hamza, Asma Mahmoud; El Rayah, El Amin

    2016-01-01

    Anopheles arabiensis Patton (Diptera: Culicidae) is considered the most efficient malaria vector in eastern Sudan. This study aims to characterize the breeding sites of An. arabiensis throughout the year in and around Kassala town, eastern Sudan. Diverse larval habitat types were visited and characterized based on the habitat type and chemical composition. Mosquito larvae were found in many diverse habitats. During the rainy season, rain pools and water bodies created by the seasonal Gash River serve as the main breeding sites. In the dry season, irrigation canals, seepage from water pipes, neglected wells, artificial containers, and man-made ditches serve as the main breeding sites. Breeding water showed a pH of 7.9 and a low concentration of the total dissolved salts. The results of this study may be considered in planning and implementing larval control programs in the area. PMID:27547039

  17. An improved estimation of the poleward expansion of coral habitats based on the inter-annual variation of sea surface temperatures

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Takao, S.; Yamano, H.; Sugihara, K.; Kumagai, N. H.; Fujii, M.; Yamanaka, Y.

    2015-12-01

    The poleward expansion of coral habitats has been observed along the Japanese coast since the 1930s. Previous modeling studies have projected a poleward expansion using decadal-mean sea surface temperatures (SSTs) in the coldest months. However, this poleward expansion could be affected by the inter-annual variation of SST in the coldest months, which has not been considered before. In this study, the simulated pattern of poleward expansion was compared between cases where coral mortality was considered based on the inter-annual variation of SST and the decadal-mean SST in the coldest months. Modeled monthly mean SSTs for historical and future global warming simulations from the most recent climate projection model (MIROC4h) were used. The poleward expansion of corals simulated by considering mortality based on the inter-annual variation of SST in the coldest months better reproduced the observed poleward expansion speed compared to the simulations without such a consideration. Our results show the importance of considering coral mortality based on the inter-annual variation of seawater temperature to produce a more realistic poleward expansion of coral habitats.

  18. Limitations of captive breeding in endangered species recovery

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Snyder, N.F.R.; Derrickson, S.R.; Beissenger, S.R.; Wiley, J.W.; Smith, T.B.; Toone, W.D.; Miller, B.

    1996-01-01

    The use of captive breeding in species recovery has grown enormously in recent years, but without a concurrent growth in appreciation of its limitations. Problems with (1) establishing self-sufficient captive populations, (2) poor success in reintroductions, (3.) high costs, (4) domestication, (5) preemption of other recovery techniques, (6) disease outbreaks, and (7) maintaining administrative continuity have all been significant. The technique has often been invoked prematurely and should not normally be employed before a careful field evaluation of costs and benefits of all conservation alternatives has been accomplished and a determination made that captive breeding is essential for species survival. Merely demonstrating that a species population is declining or bas fallen below what may be a minimum viable size does not constitute enough analysis to justify captive breeding as a recovery measure. Captive breeding should be reviewed as a last resort in species recovery and not a prophylactic or long-term solution because of the inexorable genetic and phenotypic changes that occur in captive environments. Captive breeding can play a crucial role in recovery of some species for witch effective alternatives are unavailable in the short term. However, it should not displace habitat and ecosystem protection nor should it be invoked in the absence of comprehensive efforts to maintain or restore populations in wild habitats. Zoological institutions with captive breeding programs should operate under carefully defined conditions of disease prevention and genetic/behavioral management. More important, these institutions should help preserve biodiversity through their capacities for public education, professional training, research, and support of in situ conservation efforts.

  19. Development of management objectives for breeding birds in the Mississippi Alluvial Valley

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Mueller, A.J.; Twedt, D.J.; Loesch, C.R.

    2000-01-01

    We used a six-step process to set habitat objectives and population goals for breeding birds in the Mississippi Alluvial Valley. Specifically, we used existing empirical studies and mathematically derived viable population estimates to define habitat objectives and population goals for bottomland hardwood forest, the most important habitat type in this physiographic area. Although habitat objectives must address both quality and quantity, we concentrate here on the size and number of forest patches in this highly fragmented landscape. To support source populations of all forest breeding birds we recommend the protection/restoration of 52 forest patches that are 4,000-8,000 ha in size, 36 patches of 8,000-40,000 ha, and 13 patches greater than 40,000 ha. Although every physiographic area is unique, the methodology applied here should be applicable in other situations.

  20. [Assessment of animal welfare aspects in extreme breeds of pet animals: principles, rules and other measures].

    PubMed

    Steiger, A

    2008-05-01

    The review deals with fundamental aspects of the problems and the assessment of animal welfare aspects in extreme breeds of companion and pet animals, with legislation and with other measures to avoid breeding animals with extreme characteristics. Efforts are important in particular by breeding organisations to adapt breeding standards and to improve the education of judges and breeders. Furthermore adequate activities to correctly inform animal keepers are important. PMID:18557021

  1. Movement patterns and the conservation of amphibians breeding in small, temporary wetlands

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Dodd, C.K., Jr.; Cade, B.S.

    1998-01-01

    Many amphibians breed in water but live most of their lives in terrestrial habitats. Little is known, however, about the spatial distribution of these habitats or of the distances and directions amphibians move to reach breeding sites. The amphibian community at a small, temporary pond in northcentral Florida was monitored for 5 years. Based on captures and recaptures of more than 2500 striped newts (Notophthalmus perstriatus) and 5700 eastern narrow-mouthed toads (Gastrophryne carolinensis), we tabulated the angles of orientation that these amphibians entered and exited the pond basin. Our results showed that movements of these species between the pond and terrestrial habitats were nonrandom in orientation, but that narrow corridors did not appear to be used. Differences between the species likely reflect differences in habitat preferences, whereas intraspecific differences among years and between the sexes likely reflect variation among individuals. For terrestrial buffer zones to be effective at conserving pond-breeding amphibian communities, they need both a distance and a directional component. The determination of a directional component may be obscured if studies are carried out over a short time span. Conservation efforts for wetland-breeding amphibians that concentrate solely on the wetland likely will fail without consideration of the adjacent terrestrial habitat.

  2. Ecological relationships of breeding blue-winged teal to prairie potholes

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Drewien, R.C.; Springer, P.F.

    1969-01-01

    Ecology of breeding blue-winged teal (Anas discors) was studied on the Waubay Study Area in Day County, South Dakota, in 1965 and 1966. Breeding pair use of the wetland habitat and importance of Type 1 ponds in the wetland complex were evaluated. Changes in breeding pair densities and wetland habitat conditions on the study area were compared for the 16-year period, 1950-66.Blue-winged teal pair densities of 30.7 and 33.0 per square mile in 1965 and 1966, respectively, were above the 16-year average from 1950 to 1966 and near the maximum for this period. Blue-winged teal comprised 46.7 per cent of the waterfowl breeding population in 1965 and 51.7 per cent in 1966. Number of water areas per square mile through mid-spring 1965 was comparable to the average for the 16-year period, whereas during late spring 1965 and throughout the 1966 spring breeding seasons the number of water areas increased to near optimum conditions.Annual breeding-pair densities from 1950 to 1966 appeared to be largely influenced by water conditions, and pair-density fluctuations resulted from changes in number of wet ponds from late April through mid-May. Variations in water conditions after this period did not appear to have as great an effect on numbers of breeding teal.Use of wetland habitat by pairs changed throughout the spring breeding seasons. During the post-arrival period, teal congregated on larger wetlands. With onset of egg-laying, pairs dispersed into ponds throughout the wetland complex to establish breeding home ranges. Other factors that influenced changes in habitat use included: 1) pond type and size, 2) breeding cycle phenology, 3) availability of wet ponds, and 4) land use. Number of blue-winged teal pairs per unit area of water was highest in 1965 and 1966 on Type 1B ponds, followed in decreasing order by Types 3, 1A, and 4 and 5. Greater use of Type 1B ponds was probably related to larger ratio of edge or shore line to unit area of water. Interspersion of many small

  3. Effects of Habitat Enhancement on Steelhead Trout and Coho Salmon Smolt Production, Habitat Utilization, and Habitat Availability in Fish Creek, Oregon, 1986 Annual Report.

    SciTech Connect

    Everest, Fred H.; Reeves, Gordon H.; Hohler, David B.

    1987-06-01

    Construction and evaluation of salmonid habitat improvements on Fish Creek, a tributary of the upper Clackamas River, was continued in fiscal year 1986 by the Estacada Ranger District, Mt. Hood National Forest, and the Anadromous Fish Habitat Research Unit of the Pacific Northwest Research Station (PNW), USDA Forest Service. The study began in 1982 when PNW entered into an agreement with the Mt. Hood National Forest to evaluate fish habitat improvements in the Fish Creek basin on the Estacada Ranger District. The project was initially conceived as a 5-year effort (1982-1986) to be financed with Forest Service funds. The habitat improvement program and the evaluation of improvements were both expanded in mid-1983 when the Bonneville Power Administration (BPA) entered into an agreement with the Mt. Hood National Forest to cooperatively fund work on Fish Creek. Habitat improvement work in the basin is guided by the Fish Creek Habitat Rehabilitation-Enhancement Framework developed cooperatively by the Estacada Ranger District, the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife, and the Pacific Northwest Research Station (see Appendix 2). The framework examines potential factors limiting production of salmonids in the basin, and the appropriate habitat improvement measures needed to address the limiting factors. Habitat improvement work in the basin has been designed to: (1) improve quantity, quality, and distribution of spawning habitat for coho and spring chinook salmon and steelhead trout, (2) increase low flow rearing habitat for steelhead trout and coho salmon, (3) improve overwintering habitat for coho salmon and steelhead trout, (4) rehabilitate riparian vegetation to improve stream shading to benefit all species, and (5) evaluate improvement projects from a drainage wide perspective. The objectives of the evaluation include: (1) Drainage-wide evaluation and quantification of changes in salmonid spawning and rearing habitat resulting from a variety of habitat

  4. Persistence in a Two-Dimensional Moving-Habitat Model.

    PubMed

    Phillips, Austin; Kot, Mark

    2015-11-01

    Environmental changes are forcing many species to track suitable conditions or face extinction. In this study, we use a two-dimensional integrodifference equation to analyze whether a population can track a habitat that is moving due to climate change. We model habitat as a simple rectangle. Our model quickly leads to an eigenvalue problem that determines whether the population persists or declines. After surveying techniques to solve the eigenvalue problem, we highlight three findings that impact conservation efforts such as reserve design and species risk assessment. First, while other models focus on habitat length (parallel to the direction of habitat movement), we show that ignoring habitat width (perpendicular to habitat movement) can lead to overestimates of persistence. Dispersal barriers and hostile landscapes that constrain habitat width greatly decrease the population's ability to track its habitat. Second, for some long-distance dispersal kernels, increasing habitat length improves persistence without limit; for other kernels, increasing length is of limited help and has diminishing returns. Third, it is not always best to orient the long side of the habitat in the direction of climate change. Evidence suggests that the kurtosis of the dispersal kernel determines whether it is best to have a long, wide, or square habitat. In particular, populations with platykurtic dispersal benefit more from a wide habitat, while those with leptokurtic dispersal benefit more from a long habitat. We apply our model to the Rocky Mountain Apollo butterfly (Parnassius smintheus). PMID:26582361

  5. Finding Aedes aegypti in a natural breeding site in an urban zone, Sao Paulo, Southeastern Brazil

    PubMed Central

    Lima-Camara, Tamara Nunes; Urbinatti, Paulo Roberto; Chiaravalloti-Neto, Francisco

    2016-01-01

    ABSTRACT This is the description of how nine Aedes aegypti larvae were found in a natural breeding site in the Pinheiros neighborhood, city of Sao Paulo, SP, Southeastern Brazil. The record was conducted in December 2014, during an entomological surveillance program of dengue virus vectors, with an active search of potential breeding sites, either artificial or natural. Finding Ae. aegypti larvae in a tree hole shows this species’ ability to use both artificial and natural environments as breeding sites and habitats, which points towards the importance of maintaining continuous surveillance on this mosquito in all kinds of water-holding containers. PMID:26982959

  6. Importance of landscape features and Earth observation derived habitat maps for modelling amphibian distribution in the Alta Murgia National Park

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ficetola, Gentile Francesco; Adamo, Maria; Bonardi, Anna; De Pasquale, Vito; Liuzzi, Cristiano; Lovergine, Francesco; Marcone, Francesco; Mastropasqua, Fabio; Tarantino, Cristina; Blonda, Palma; Padoa-Schioppa, Emilio

    2015-05-01

    Traditionally, analyses of relationships between amphibians and habitat focused on breeding environments (i.e., pond features) more than on the features of the surrounding environment. Nevertheless, for most amphibians the terrestrial phase is longer than the aquatic phase, and consequently landscape features (i.e., habitat mosaics) may have an important role for modelling amphibian distribution. There were different aims in this analysis. Firstly, we compared the effectiveness of the information provided by land cover/use (LC/LU) classes and habitat classes defined according to a new habitat taxonomy named General Habitat Category (GHC), which is based on the concept of biological forms of dominant vegetation and class naturalness. The GHC map used was obtained from a pre-existing validated LC/LU map, by integrating spectral and spatial measurements from very high resolution Earth observation data according to ecological expert rules involving concepts related to spatial and temporal relationships among LC/LU and habitat classes. Then, we investigated the importance for amphibians of the landscape surrounding ponds within the Italian Alta Murgia National Park. The work assessed whether LC/LU classes in pond surrounds are important for the presence/absence of amphibians in this area, and identified which classes are more important for amphibians. The results obtained can provide useful indications to management strategies aiming at the conservation of amphibians within the study area. An information-theoretic approach was adopted to assess whether GHC maps allow to improve the performance of species distribution models. We used the Akaike's Information Criterion (AICc) to compare the effectiveness of GHC categories versus LC/LU categories in explaining the presence/absence of pool frogs. AICc weights suggest that GHC categories can better explain the distribution of frogs, compared to LC/LU classes.

  7. Quantifying the effect of habitat availability on species distributions.

    PubMed

    Aarts, Geert; Fieberg, John; Brasseur, Sophie; Matthiopoulos, Jason

    2013-11-01

    1. If animals moved randomly in space, the use of different habitats would be proportional to their availability. Hence, deviations from proportionality between use and availability are considered the tell-tale sign of preference. This principle forms the basis for most habitat selection and species distribution models fitted to use-availability or count data (e.g. MaxEnt and Resource Selection Functions). 2. Yet, once an essential habitat type is sufficiently abundant to meet an individual's needs, increased availability of this habitat type may lead to a decrease in the use/availability ratio. Accordingly, habitat selection functions may estimate negative coefficients when habitats are superabundant, incorrectly suggesting an apparent avoidance. Furthermore, not accounting for the effects of availability on habitat use may lead to poor predictions, particularly when applied to habitats that differ considerably from those for which data have been collected. 3. Using simulations, we show that habitat use varies non-linearly with habitat availability, even when individuals follow simple movement rules to acquire food and avoid risk. The results show that the impact of availability strongly depends on the type of habitat (e.g. whether it is essential or substitutable) and how it interacts with the distribution and availability of other habitats. 4. We demonstrate the utility of a variety of existing and new methods that enable the influence of habitat availability to be explicitly estimated. Models that allow for non-linear effects (using b-spline smoothers) and interactions between environmental covariates defining habitats and measures of their availability were best able to capture simulated patterns of habitat use across a range of environments. 5. An appealing aspect of some of the methods we discuss is that the relative influence of availability is not defined a priori, but directly estimated by the model. This feature is likely to improve model prediction

  8. Individual fluctuations in toxin levels affect breeding site fidelity in a chemically defended amphibian.

    PubMed

    Bucciarelli, Gary M; Green, David B; Shaffer, H Bradley; Kats, Lee B

    2016-05-25

    Behaviours that influence habitat selection strongly determine species movement patterns. One component of animal behaviour that largely influences movement patterns and habitat choice is site fidelity. California newts (family Salamandridae) demonstrate remarkable site fidelity, typically homing to the same pool of a stream each breeding season. Individuals often occupy a specific pool throughout the breeding season, but some males shift among breeding pools, altering their set of potential mates, competitors, and predators. In this study, we measured dermal concentrations of the chemical defence compound tetrodotoxin (TTX) in recaptured male California newts (Taricha torosa) over five breeding seasons to evaluate whether relative TTX concentrations are associated with breeding site fidelity in the field. Our five years of field sampling indicates that TTX concentrations of individuals and group means fluctuate tremendously, implying that TTX is not a stable phenotypic trait. Despite such fluctuations, we found that an individual's relative TTX concentration explains fidelity to a breeding pool and suggests that newts may be able to assess both their own concentrations of TTX and that of conspecifics to make decisions about remaining in or abandoning a breeding pool. These results provide us a novel dimension to chemical defence phenotypes in nature and their ecological consequences, potentially requiring a re-evaluation of the coevolutionary dynamics of predation pressure on toxin-laden organisms. PMID:27194704

  9. Quantitative assessment of Australian plague locust habitats in the inland of eastern Australia using RS and GIS technologies

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, Haikou

    2014-10-01

    greenness for 1st-instar bands illustrated a very different pattern from the others, which could have resulted from the limited dataset mainly from the winter rain zone. Significant single rainfall of 25-30 mm was required to trigger the locust breeding sequence, and in excess of 40-50 mm total rainfall for locusts to survive the entire nymphal period. These findings will improve the understanding of locust plague mechanisms related to habitat condition, potentially provide practical means to monitor locust habitat conditions remotely and improve the underlying basis for locust survey and population management in Australia.

  10. Population structure of four Thai indigenous chicken breeds

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background In recent years, Thai indigenous chickens have increasingly been bred as an alternative in Thailand poultry market. Due to their popularity, there is a clear need to improve the underlying quality and productivity of these chickens. Studying chicken genetic variation can improve the chicken meat quality as well as conserving rare chicken species. To begin with, a minimal set of molecular markers that can characterize the Thai indigenous chicken breeds is required. Results Using AFLP-PCR, 30 single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) from Thai indigenous chickens were obtained by DNA sequencing. From these SNPs, we genotyped 465 chickens from 7 chicken breeds, comprising four Thai indigenous chicken breeds- Pradhuhangdum (PD), Luenghangkhao (LK), Dang (DA) and Chee (CH), one wild chicken - the red jungle fowls (RJF), and two commercial chicken breeds - the brown egg layer (BL) and commercial broiler (CB). The chicken genotypes reveal unique genetic structures of the four Thai indigenous chicken breeds. The average expected heterozygosities of PD= 0.341, LK= 0.357, DA=0.349 and CH= 0.373, while the references RJF= 0.327, CB=0.324 and BL= 0.285. The FST values among Thai indigenous chicken breeds vary from 0.051 to 0.096. The FST values between the pairs of Thai indigenous chickens and RJF vary from 0.083 to 0.105 and the FST values between the Thai indigenous chickens and the two commercial chicken breeds vary from 0.116 to 0.221. A neighbour-joining tree of all individual chickens showed that the Thai indigenous chickens were clustered into four groups which were closely related to the wild RJF but far from the commercial breeds. Such commercial breeds were split into two closely groups. Using genetic admixture analysis, we observed that the Thai indigenous chicken breeds are likely to share common ancestors with the RJF, while both commercial chicken breeds share the same admixture pattern. Conclusion These results indicated that the Thai indigenous chicken

  11. Tracking multi-generational colonization of the breeding grounds by monarch butterflies in eastern North America

    PubMed Central

    Flockhart, D. T. Tyler; Wassenaar, Leonard I.; Martin, Tara G.; Hobson, Keith A.; Wunder, Michael B.; Norris, D. Ryan

    2013-01-01

    Insect migration may involve movements over multiple breeding generations at continental scales, resulting in formidable challenges to their conservation and management. Using distribution models generated from citizen scientist occurrence data and stable-carbon and -hydrogen isotope measurements, we tracked multi-generational colonization of the breeding grounds of monarch butterflies (Danaus plexippus) in eastern North America. We found that monarch breeding occurrence was best modelled with geographical and climatic variables resulting in an annual breeding distribution of greater than 12 million km2 that encompassed 99% occurrence probability. Combining occurrence models with stable isotope measurements to estimate natal origin, we show that butterflies which overwintered in Mexico came from a wide breeding distribution, including southern portions of the range. There was a clear northward progression of monarchs over successive generations from May until August when reproductive butterflies began to change direction and moved south. Fifth-generation individuals breeding in Texas in the late summer/autumn tended to originate from northern breeding areas rather than regions further south. Although the Midwest was the most productive area during the breeding season, monarchs that re-colonized the Midwest were produced largely in Texas, suggesting that conserving breeding habitat in the Midwest alone is insufficient to ensure long-term persistence of the monarch butterfly population in eastern North America. PMID:23926146

  12. Tracking multi-generational colonization of the breeding grounds by monarch butterflies in eastern North America.

    PubMed

    Flockhart, D T Tyler; Wassenaar, Leonard I; Martin, Tara G; Hobson, Keith A; Wunder, Michael B; Norris, D Ryan

    2013-10-01

    Insect migration may involve movements over multiple breeding generations at continental scales, resulting in formidable challenges to their conservation and management. Using distribution models generated from citizen scientist occurrence data and stable-carbon and -hydrogen isotope measurements, we tracked multi-generational colonization of the breeding grounds of monarch butterflies (Danaus plexippus) in eastern North America. We found that monarch breeding occurrence was best modelled with geographical and climatic variables resulting in an annual breeding distribution of greater than 12 million km(2) that encompassed 99% occurrence probability. Combining occurrence models with stable isotope measurements to estimate natal origin, we show that butterflies which overwintered in Mexico came from a wide breeding distribution, including southern portions of the range. There was a clear northward progression of monarchs over successive generations from May until August when reproductive butterflies began to change direction and moved south. Fifth-generation individuals breeding in Texas in the late summer/autumn tended to originate from northern breeding areas rather than regions further south. Although the Midwest was the most productive area during the breeding season, monarchs that re-colonized the Midwest were produced largely in Texas, suggesting that conserving breeding habitat in the Midwest alone is insufficient to ensure long-term persistence of the monarch butterfly population in eastern North America. PMID:23926146

  13. Materials for breeding blankets

    SciTech Connect

    Mattas, R.F.; Billone, M.C.

    1995-09-01

    There are several candidate concepts for tritium breeding blankets that make use of a number of special materials. These materials can be classified as Primary Blanket Materials, which have the greatest influence in determining the overall design and performance, and Secondary Blanket Materials, which have key functions in the operation of the blanket but are less important in establishing the overall design and performance. The issues associated with the blanket materials are specified and several examples of materials performance are given. Critical data needs are identified.

  14. Tornadic storm avoidance behavior in breeding songbirds.

    PubMed

    Streby, Henry M; Kramer, Gunnar R; Peterson, Sean M; Lehman, Justin A; Buehler, David A; Andersen, David E

    2015-01-01

    Migration is a common behavior used by animals of many taxa to occupy different habitats during different periods. Migrant birds are categorized as either facultative (i.e., those that are forced to migrate by some proximal cue, often weather) or obligate (i.e., those that migrate on a regular cycle). During migration, obligate migrants can curtail or delay flights in response to inclement weather or until favorable winds prevail, and they can temporarily reorient or reverse direction when ecological or meteorological obstacles are encountered. However, it is not known whether obligate migrants undertake facultative migrations and make large-scale movements in response to proximal cues outside of their regular migration periods. Here, we present the first documentation of obligate long-distance migrant birds undertaking a facultative migration, wherein breeding golden-winged warblers (Vermivora chrysoptera) carrying light-level geolocators performed a >1,500 km 5-day circumvention of a severe tornadic storm. The birds evacuated their breeding territories >24 hr before the arrival of the storm and atmospheric variation associated with it. The probable cue, radiating >1,000 km from tornadic storms, perceived by birds and influencing bird behavior and movements, is infrasound (i.e., sound below the range of human hearing). With the predicted increase in severity and frequency of similar storms as anthropogenic climate change progresses, understanding large-scale behavioral responses of animals to such events will be an important objective of future research. PMID:25532897

  15. Improving Conservation of Florida Manatees ( Trichechus manatus latirostris): Conceptualization and Contributions Toward a Regional Warm-Water Network Management Strategy for Sustainable Winter Habitat

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Flamm, Richard Owen; Reynolds, John Elliot; Harmak, Craig

    2013-01-01

    We used southwestern Florida as a case study to lay the groundwork for an intended and organized decision-making process for managing warm-water habitat needed by endangered manatees to survive winters in Florida. Scientists and managers have prioritized (a) projecting how the network of warm-water sites will change over the next 50 years as warmed industrial discharges may expire and as flows of natural springs are reduced through redirection of water for human uses, and (b) mitigating such changes to prevent undue consequences to manatees. Given the complexities introduced by manatee ecology; agency organizational structure; shifting public demands; fluctuating resource availability; and managing within interacting cultural, social, political, and environmental contexts, it was clear that a structured decision process was needed. To help promote such a process, we collected information relevant to future decisions including maps of known and suspected warm-water sites and prototyped a characterization of sites and networks. We propose steps that would lead to models that might serve as core tools in manatee/warm-water decision-making, and we summarized topics relevant for informed decision-making (e.g., manatee spatial cognition, risk of cold-stress morbidity and mortality, and human dimensions). A major impetus behind this effort is to ensure proactively that robust modeling tools are available well in advance of the anticipated need for a critical management decision.

  16. Improving conservation of Florida manatees (Trichechus manatus latirostris): conceptualization and contributions toward a regional warm-water network management strategy for sustainable winter habitat.

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