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Morphotectonic study of Hispaniola  

Microsoft Academic Search

Geomorphological analysis; aerial photographs; and geomorphologic, geological, geophysical, topographical, and field studies\\u000a show that the morphology of Hispaniola can be linked to lateral variations in the geometry and tectonism of the Caribbean-North\\u000a American Plate Boundary Zone. Three main categories of the relief were established: territorial units (1 megablock, 2 macroblocks,\\u000a 14 mesoblocks, 209 blocks, 401 microblocks, and 527 nanoblocks), morphostructural

M. O. Cotilla; D. Córdoba; M. Calzadilla



Seismic hazard from the Hispaniola subduction zone: Correction to "Historical perspective on seismic hazard to Hispaniola and  

E-print Network

Seismic hazard from the Hispaniola subduction zone: Correction to "Historical perspective), Seismic hazard from the Hispaniola subduction zone: Correction to "Historical perspective on seismic.1002/jgrb.50388. [1] In the paper "Historical perspective on seismic hazard to Hispaniola and the northeast

ten Brink, Uri S.


Satellite Sees Tropical Storm Chantal Move Over Hispaniola  

NASA Video Gallery

This NOAA GOES-East satellite animation from July 6 to July 10 shows the development of Tropical Storm Chantal in the Atlantic Ocean and movement over Hispaniola by July 10. TRT 0:06 Credit: NASA/N...


Cenozoic sedimentary and deformational history of Hispaniola  

SciTech Connect

Previous workers have recognized that the basement rocks of northern Hispaniola consists of structurally complex volcanic, plutonic, and metamorphic rocks that have been interpreted as a Late Cretaceous-Eocene forearc and trench complex. Questions that have remained poorly answered from the study of the basement complex include: (1) why and when did subduction end, and (2) how many arc complexes are present and how and when did accretion occur. In order to answer these questions more satisfactorily, the authors conducted detailed mapping of upper Eocene-lower Miocene marine clastic and carbonate rocks that unconformably overlie the forearc and trench complex. The Cordillera Septentrional consists of a minimum of two distinct arc terranes that have been juxtaposed since the middle Miocene by left-lateral strike-slip faulting oriented slightly oblique (315) to the structural and geomorphic trends of the present-day plate boundary (295). Basement types and overlying sedimentary rock types and ages vary abruptly across the linear, 100-400 m wide shear zone. Southwest of the fault, the basement is made mostly of currently undated, deep-water silty carbonates with interbedded volcanics, whereas to the northeast of the fault, basement consists of a heterogeneous volcanic, plutonic, and metamorphic complex. Fossil dating of sediments is in progress to determine the age of arc activity. The composition of turbidite basins unconformably overlying both basement types closely reflects the underlying basement lithologies. Preliminary biostratigraphic data indicate the southwestern basin (approximately 5,500 m of section) is late Eocene-early Oligocene, whereas the northeastern basin (approximately 2,500 m of section) is early Miocene. Upper Miocene-Pliocene carbonates ( > 300 m thick) cap both basins and suggest post-early Miocene ''docking'' of the basement terranes and their associated basins.

De Zoeten, R.; Mann, P.; Dolan, J.F.; Monechi, S.



Introduction The island of Hispaniola has reduced its malaria burden,  

E-print Network

Introduction The island of Hispaniola has reduced its malaria burden, with parasite prevalence governments are cooperating on a bi-national strategy for malaria elimination by 2020. An in-depth feasibility assessment with a focus on Haiti--which carries most of the malaria burden--was conducted in 2013 to provide

Klein, Ophir


Hiccups in Hispaniola: What socioeconomic factors led to differences in the health care and poverty level in Hispaniola?  

Microsoft Academic Search

The island of Hispaniola is inhabited by two juxtaposed yet very different nations. Initially a Spanish colony, the wealthier nation of France gained control over the western side forming the nations of Haiti and the Dominican Republic. A long history of struggle in Haiti compared to the relatively more passive history of the Dominican Republic propagated the economic and cultural

Guillermo Flores; Katelyn Lengacher; Christopher Stewart



Mercury concentrations in tropical resident and migrant songbirds on Hispaniola.  


Despite growing concerns over mercury (Hg) exposure to humans and wildlife on a global scale, little is known about Hg bioaccumulation in the New World tropics. From 2005 to 2011, we monitored Hg concentrations in blood of nine avian species occupying a geographic range of tropical wet broadleaf sites on the island of Hispaniola, including eight passerines (two Nearctic-Neotropical migrant and six resident species) and one top order predatory accipiter. Invertivorous songbirds were further differentiated by foraging guild, with six species of ground-foragers and two species of foliage-gleaners. Blood Hg concentrations were orders of magnitude higher in birds sampled in central and southern cloud forest sites (1,000-1,800 m elevation) than in northern and northeastern rainforest sites (50-500 m elevation), with migratory and resident species both showing 2-20× greater blood Hg concentrations in cloud forests than in rainforests. Within cloud forest sites, ground-foraging species had higher Hg concentrations than foliage-gleaning species. Top order predatory sharp-shinned hawks (Accipiter striatus) had the highest blood Hg concentrations among all species, suggesting that Hg biomagnification is occurring in terrestrial forests of Hispaniola. Two migrant songbird species overwintering on the island had higher blood Hg concentrations than have been recorded on their North American breeding grounds. Future studies should seek to elucidate sources of variation in atmospheric Hg deposition on Hispaniola and to quantify the dynamics of Hg cycling in tropical forest ecosystems, which may differ in important ways from patterns documented in temperate forest ecosystems. PMID:23076839

Townsend, Jason M; Rimmer, Christopher C; Driscoll, Charles T; McFarland, Kent P; Iñigo-Elias, Eduardo



Significant earthquakes on the Enriquillo fault system, Hispaniola, 1500-2010  

Microsoft Academic Search

Although the 2010 Haiti earthquake came as a surprise to many, historical records indicate frequent seismic activity along the northeast Caribbean plate boundary over the past 500 years, particularly on the island of Hispaniola. Here we show that a series of devastating earthquakes on the Enriquillo fault system in the 18th century started with an intensity magnitude (MI) of 6.8

W. Bakun; C. H. Flores



Ancient islands and modern invasions: disparate phylogeographic histories among Hispaniola's endemic birds.  


With its large size, complex topography and high number of avian endemics, Hispaniola appears to be a likely candidate for the in situ speciation of its avifauna, despite the worldwide rarity of avian speciation within single islands. We used multilocus comparative phylogeography techniques to examine the pattern and history of divergence in 11 endemic birds representing potential within-island speciation events. Haplotype and allele networks from mitochondrial ND2 and nuclear intron loci reveal a consistent pattern: phylogeographic divergence within or between closely related species is correlated with the likely distribution of ancient sea barriers that once divided Hispaniola into several smaller paleo-islands. Coalescent and mitochondrial clock dating of divergences indicate species-specific response to different geological events over the wide span of the island's history. We found no evidence that ecological or topographical complexity generated diversity, either by creating open niches or by restricting long-term gene flow. Thus, no true within-island speciation appears to have occurred among the species sampled on Hispaniola. Divergence events predating the merging of Hispaniola's paleo-island blocks cannot be considered in situ divergence, and postmerging divergence in response to episodic island segmentation by marine flooding probably represents in situ vicariance or interarchipelago speciation by dispersal. Our work highlights the necessity of considering island geologic history while investigating the speciation-area relationship in birds and other taxa. PMID:21449896

Sly, Nicholas D; Townsend, Andrea K; Rimmer, Christopher C; Townsend, Jason M; Latta, Steven C; Lovette, Irby J



Historical perspective on seismic hazard to Hispaniola and the northeast Caribbean region  

USGS Publications Warehouse

We evaluate the long-term seismic activity of the North-American/Caribbean plate boundary from 500 years of historical earthquake damage reports. The 2010 Haiti earthquakes and other earthquakes were used to derive regional attenuation relationships between earthquake intensity, magnitude, and distance from the reported damage to the epicenter, for Hispaniola and for Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands. The attenuation relationship for Hispaniola earthquakes and northern Lesser Antilles earthquakes is similar to that for California earthquakes, indicating a relatively rapid attenuation of damage intensity with distance. Intensities in Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands decrease less rapidly with distance. We use the intensity-magnitude relationships to systematically search for the location and intensity magnitude MI which best fit all the reported damage for historical earthquakes. Many events occurred in the 20th-century along the plate-boundary segment from central Hispaniola to the NW tip of Puerto Rico, but earlier events from this segment were not identified. The remaining plate boundary to the east to Guadeloupe is probably not associated with M > 8 historical subduction-zone earthquakes. The May 2, 1787 earthquake, previously assigned an M 8–8.25, is probably only MI 6.9 and could be located north, west or SW of Puerto Rico. An MI 6.9 earthquake on July 11, 1785 was probably located north or east of the Virgin Islands. We located MI I 7.7) and May 7, 1842 (MI 7.6) earthquakes ruptured the Septentrional Fault in northern Hispaniola. If so, the recurrence interval on the central Septentrional Fault is ~300 years, and only 170 years has elapsed since the last event. The recurrence interval of large earthquakes along the Hispaniola subduction segment is likely longer than the historical record. Intra-arc M ? 7.0 earthquakes may occur every 75–100 years in the 410-km-long segment between the Virgin Islands and Guadeloupe.

ten Brink, U.S.; Bakun, W.H.; Flores, C.H.



Development of a Cholera Vaccination Policy on the Island of Hispaniola, 2010–2013  

PubMed Central

Deployment of oral cholera vaccine (OCV) on the Island of Hispaniola has been considered since the emergence of the disease in October of 2010. At that time, emergency response focused on the time-tested measures of treatment to prevent deaths and sanitation to diminish transmission. Use of the limited amount of vaccine available in the global market was recommended for demonstration activities, which were carried out in 2012. As transmission continues, vaccination was recommended in Haiti as one component of a comprehensive initiative supported by an international coalition to eliminate cholera on the Island of Hispaniola. Leveraging its delivery to strengthen other cholera prevention measures and immunization services, a phased OCV introduction is pursued in accordance with global vaccine supply. Not mutually exclusive or sequential deployment options include routine immunization for children over the age of 1 year and campaigns in vulnerable metropolitan areas or rural areas with limited access to health services. PMID:24106195

Vicari, Andrea S.; Ruiz-Matus, Cuauhtémoc; de Quadros, Ciro; Andrus, Jon K.



Analysis of vegetation patterns in the Hispaniola island using AVHRR data  

NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

Tropical forest deforestation is an important concern and remote sensing techniques are key elements that can lead us to a better evaluation of its dynamics. The study of the spatial and temporal vegetation patterns by means of vegetation indexes has been widely used at a global and regional scale. Transition zones between countries with different cultures and environmental policy are important cases of study, like the one that is shown here, that takes place in the Caribbean Island of the Hispaniola. Making use of the Global Land 1-km AVHRR project data set, monthly NDVI and land surface temperature trends have been analyzed for a one year period in the Hispaniola. In order to address the great contrast between countries, present study has been concentrated on the vegetation dynamics across the border region. It is attempted to show the utility of these two variables to confirm much higher mean monthly NDVI trends in the Dominican side and remark the more extreme biomass changes and over pressure against Haiti natural forests.

Hernández-Leal, P. A.; Arbelo, M.; Wilson, J. S.; Díaz, A. M.



Analysis of vegetation patterns in the Hispaniola Island using AVHRR data  

NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

Tropical forest deforestation is an important concern and remote sensing techniques are key elements that can lead us to a better evaluation of its dynamics. The study of the spatial and temporal vegetation patterns by means of vegetation indexes, has been widely used at a global and regional scales. An important case of study are the transition zones between countries with different cultures and environmental policy. That is the case in la Hispaniola island. So in this work, making use of the Global Land 1-km AVHRR Project data set, we have analyzed monthly NDVI and Land Surface Temperature (LST) trends for a one year period in la Hispaniola. In order to address the great contrast between countries we have shown vegetation dynamics across the border region and the whole Island. This work shows the usefulness of these two variables to confirm much higher mean monthly NDVI trends in the Dominican side and remark the more extreme biomass changes and over pressure against Haiti natural forests.

Hernandez-Leal, P.; Arbelo, M.; Wilson, J.


Morphostructure at the junction between the Beata ridge and the Greater Antilles island arc (offshore Hispaniola southern slope)  

NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

Oblique convergence between the Caribbean plate's interior and the inactive Greater Antilles island arc has resulted in the collision and impingement of the thickened crust of the Beata ridge into southern Hispaniola Island. Deformation resulting from this convergence changes from a low-angle southward-verging thrust south of eastern Hispaniola, to collision and uplift in south-central Hispaniola, and to left-lateral transpression along the Southern peninsula of Haiti in western Hispaniola. Using new swath bathymetry and a dense seismic reflection grid, we mapped the morphological, structural and sedimentological elements of offshore southern Hispaniola. We have identified four morphotectonic provinces: the Dominican sub-basin, the Muertos margin, the Beata ridge and the Haiti sub-basin. The lower slope of the Muertos margin is occupied by the active Muertos thrust belt, which includes several active out-of-sequence thrust faults that, were they to rupture along their entire length, could generate large-magnitude earthquakes. The interaction of the thrust belt with the Beata ridge yields a huge recess and the imbricate system disappears. The upper slope of the Muertos margin shows thick slope deposits where the extensional tectonics and slumping processes predominate. The northern Beata ridge consists of an asymmetrically uplifted and faulted block of oceanic crust. Our results suggest that the shallower structure and morphology of the northern Beata ridge can be mainly explained by a mechanism of extensional unloading from the Upper Cretaceous onward that is still active residually along the summit of the ridge. The tectonic models for the northern Beata ridge involving active reverse strike-slip faults and transpression caused by the oblique convergence between the Beata ridge and the island arc are not supported by the structural interpretation. The eastern Bahoruco slope an old normal fault that acts as a passive tear fault accommodating the sharp along-strike transition from low-angle thrusting to collision and uplifting.

Granja Bruña, J. L.; Carbó-Gorosabel, A.; Llanes Estrada, P.; Muñoz-Martín, A.; ten Brink, U. S.; Gómez Ballesteros, M.; Druet, M.; Pazos, A.



New Evaluation of Seismic Hazard in Cental America and la Hispaniola  

NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

The results from seismic hazard studies carried out in two seismic scenarios, Central America Region (CA) and La Hispaniola Island, are presented here. Both cases follow the Probabilistic Seismic Hazard Assessment (PSHA) methodology and they are developed in terms of PGA, and SA (T), for T of 0.1, 0.2, 0.5, 1 and 2s. In both anaysis, hybrid zonation models are considered, integrated by seismogenic zones and faults where data of slip rate and recurrence time are available. First, we present a new evaluation of seismic hazard in CA, starting with the results of a previous study by Benito et al (2011). Some improvements are now included, such as: updated catalogue till 2011, corrections in the zonning model in particular for subduction regime taken into account the variation of the dip in Costa Rica and Panama, and modelization of some faults as independent units for the hazard estimation. The results allow us to carry out a sensitivity analysis comparing the ones obtained with and without faults. In a second part we present the results of the PSHA in La Hispaniola, carried out as part of the cooperative project SISMO-HAITI supported by UPM and developed in cooperation with ONEV. It started a few months after the 2010 event, as an answer to a required help from the Haitian government to UPM. The study was aimed at obtaining results suitable for seismic design purposes and started with the elaboration of a seismic catalogue for the Hispaniola, requiring an exhaustive revision of data reported by around 30 seismic agencies, apart from these from Puerto Rico and Dominican Republic Seismic Networks. Seismotectonic models for the region were reviewed and a new regional zonation was proposed, taking into account different geophysical data. Attenuation models for subduction and crustal zones were also reviewed and the more suitable were calibrated with data recorded inside the Caribbean plate. As a result of the PSHA, different maps were generated for the quoted parameters, together with the UHS for the main cities in the country. The obtained values for PGA and return peridod of 475 y. are comparable to the ones of the Dominican Republic Building Code, with maximun PGA around 400 cm/s2 (in rock sites). However, the morphology of the map is quite similar to the previous one by Frankel et al (2011), althought ours presents lower PGA values. The results are available as a basis for the the first Haitian building code.

Benito, B.; Camacho, E. I.; Rojas, W.; Climent, A.; Alvarado-Induni, G.; Marroquin, G.; Molina, E.; Talavera, E.; Belizaire, D.; Pierristal, G.; Torres, Y.; Huerfano, V.; Polanco, E.; García, R.; Zevallos, F.



Accretionary margin of north-western Hispaniola: morphology, structure and development of part of the northern Caribbean plate boundary  

USGS Publications Warehouse

Broad-range side-scan sonar (GLORIA) images and single- and multi-channel seismic reflection profiles demonstrate that the margin of north-western Hispaniola has experienced compression as a consequence of oblique North American-Caribbean plate convergence. Two principal morphological or structural types of accretionary wedges are observed along this margin. The first type is characterized by a gently sloping (???4??) sea floor and generally margin-parallel linear sets of sea-floor ridges that gradually deepen towards the flat Hispaniola Basin floor to the north. The ridges are caused by an internal structure consisting of broad anticlines bounded by thrust faults that dip southwards beneath Hispaniola. Anticlines form at the base of the slope and are eventually sheared and underthrust beneath the slope. In contrast, the second type of accretionary wedge exhibits a steeper (???6-16??) sea-floor slope characterized by local slumping and a more abrupt morphological transition to the adjacent basin. The internal structure appears chaotic on seismic reflection profiles and probably consists of tight folds and closely spaced faults. We suggest that changes in sea-floor declivity and internal structure may result from variations in the dip or frictional resistance of the de??collement, or possibly from changes in the cohesive strength of the wedge sediments. The observed pattern of thickening of Hispaniola Basin turbidites towards the insular margin suggests differential southwards tilting of the Hispaniola Basin strata, probably in response to North America-Caribbean plate interactions since the Early Tertiary. Based upon indirect age control from adjacent parts of the northern caribbean plate boundary, we infer a Late Eocene to Early Miocene episode of transcurrent motion (i.e. little or no tilting), an Early Miocene to Late Pliocene period of oblique convergence (i.e. increased tilt) during which the accretionary wedge began to be constructed, and a Late Pliocene to Recent episode of increased convergence (i.e. twice the Miocene to Pliocene tilt), which has led to rapid uplift and erosion of sediment sources on the margin and on Hispaniola, generating a submarine fan at the base of the insular slope. ?? 1992.

Dillon, W.P.; Austin, J.A., Jr.; Scanlon, K.M.; Terence, Edgar N.; Parson, L.M.



Circulation of high pressure blocks in subduction complexes: some insights from northern Hispaniola  

SciTech Connect

Detailed mapping in the Rio San Juan Complex (RSJC) and reconnaissance investigations in the Samana peninsula, in North Hispaniola, have determined the characteristics of a Cretaceous blueschist/eclogite melange. In the RSJC, the melange has a mafic greenschist matrix which appears to be part of a larger, coherent greenschist terrane, which varies in composition and includes mafic and quartz feldspathic types interbedded in a sedimentary protolith. Of the many lithologies present in the melange, the most common are original gt-px and gt-hbl schist, both of which have been strongly overprinted by a blueschist facies metamorphism. The blocks also have a rind of coarse grained actinolite surrounded a second rind of actinolite + chlorite + fuchsitic (cr-rich) mica. The authors follow Moore in suggesting that the rind formed by contact with serpentinite at depth. They suggest instead that rind formation and block exhumation were by diapirism and/or corner flow of serpentinite. Limited isotopic evidence suggests that the blocks area about 90 m.y. old. Stratigraphic evidence indicates that the deeper levels of the coherent metamorphic terrane was eroded by Paleocene time (65 m.y. b.p.). Thus, the complete cycle of exhumation of blocks from greater than 30km., their incorporation into trench-fill sediments, burial of the coherent terrane and subsequent erosion of this terrane took place in about 25 m.y.. Since the erosion of the coherent terrane must have occupied the greater part of this time period (about 20 m.y.), then both burial and exumation took place in only a few million years.

Draper, G.; Nagle, F.



Three new phylogenetic and biological Neurospora species: N. hispaniola, N. metzenbergii and N. perkinsii.  


The recent recognition of provisional Neurospora phylogenetic species (PS) 1-3 gave us the opportunity to compare genetic isolation, which underlies phylogenetic species recognition (PSR), with reproductive isolation as criteria for recognizing new species. This investigation involved first finding new individuals of PS 1-3 from a search of the Perkins culture collection, then assessing genetic isolation by PSR for old and new members of PS 1-3 and finally comparing species recognition by genetic isolation as determined by PSR to species recognition by reproductive isolation as determined by biological species recognition (BSR) and geographic distribution. To aid the search for additional members of the PS we used the genetic variation originally used to discover Neurospora PS 1-3 to easily distinguish members of Neurospora PS 1-3 from the closely related species N. crassa and N. intermedia. To increase our chance of success the analysis was performed on N. crassa and N. intermedia isolates that were either not clearly assignable to species by BSR using tester strains or were from the same geographic locations as the known members of PS1-3. Eleven new members of Neurospora PS 1-3 were identified: one new PS1, nine new PS2 and one new PS3. To complement PSR we investigated reproductive isolation with BSR in PS1-3 and the two other most closely related species, N. intermedia and N. crassa, with intraspecific and interspecific crosses. PS1 and PS2 appear reproductively isolated because they successfully mated intraspecifically and not interspecifically. PS3 isolates successfully crossed with other PS3 isolates, however they also successfully crossed with N. crassa, as previously reported, indicating that genetic isolation can precede reproductive isolation. We compared phylogenetic, mating and geographical data to challenge the use of PSR as the main criterion in the formal description of species and, having failed to discredit the approach, describe the new species, N. hispaniola (PS1), N. metzenbergii (PS2) and N. perkinsii (PS3). PMID:19927744

Villalta, Christopher F; Jacobson, David J; Taylor, John W



Faulting and strain partitioning in Jamaica from GPS and structural data: Implications for Gonave and Hispaniola microplate kinematics, northern Caribbean  

NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

A series of small microplates separate the Caribbean and North America plates in the northern Caribbean. My dissertation focuses on understanding the structural evolution and neotectonic deformation of Jamaica, and how it relates to the overall microplates and tectonics of the northern Caribbean. Jamaica, which lies along the same seismically active plate boundary as Haiti, has had twelve earthquakes with Modified Mercalli intensities of VII to X since 1667. However, remarkably little is known about which faults presently constitute the most significant seismic hazards. This research provides insight into tectonic processes and facilitates mitigation of geological hazards in the region. Two chapters focus on characterizing deformation in Jamaica through modeling GPS velocities and through field mapping. The best-fitting models based on GPS velocities place most strike-slip motion on faults in central Jamaica and suggest that faults in northern Jamaica have minimal motion. I estimate 4--5 mm yr-1 of slip for faults near the capital city of Kingston of southeastern Jamaica, implying significant seismic hazard. Field mapping combined with present-day topography, focal mechanisms, geology, gravity, and well and borehole data indicate that east-west contraction is accommodated by reactivated, NNW-striking reverse faults, which are bound by E-striking strike-slip faults in southern Jamaica. The other two chapters of my thesis focuses on understanding the behavior of the microplates along the Caribbean-North America plate boundary: I model GPS velocities and use shear-wave splitting to understand the crustal and mantle behaviors, respectively of the microplates. The GPS data require an independently moving Hispaniola microplate between the Mona Passage and a likely diffuse boundary just west of or within western Hispaniola. The new microplate angular velocities predict 6.8+/-1.0 mm yr-1 of left-lateral slip and 5.7+/-1 mm yr-1 of convergent motion surrounding the seismically hazardous Enriquillo fault of western Hispaniola, suggesting that one to two M=7 earthquakes are expected for Haiti each century. Using shear-wave splitting analyses, I document fast axis of polarization parallel to the Gonave microplate boundaries along its northern, southern, and eastern boundaries. In the interior of the microplates, weak/no fabric is documented suggesting that the microplate boundaries continue into the upper mantle.

Benford, Bryn


New myrmecomorphous longhorned beetles from Haiti and the Dominican Republic with a key to Anaglyptini and Tillomorphini of Hispaniola (Coleoptera, Cerambycidae, Cerambycinae)  

PubMed Central

Abstract First records of the tribes Anaglyptini and Tillomorphini (Coleoptera: Cerambycidae: Cerambycinae) are documented for Hispaniola. A new genus of a highly myrmecomorphic longhorned beetle (Licracantha gen. n.) is described and illustrated based on one species (Licracantha formicaria sp. n.) and provisionally assigned to Tillomorphini. Three other new species of ant mimic longhorned beetles are described and illustrated: Calliclytus macoris sp. n. (Tillomorphini), Tilloclytus baoruco sp. n., and Tilloclytus neiba sp. n. (Anaglyptini). An identification key and distribution map to all known Hispaniolan species of these two tribes are presented. PMID:21852922

Lingafelter, Steven W.



Influence of salinity and temperature on the physiology of Limia melanonotata (Cyprinodontiformes: Poeciliidae): A search for abiotic factors limiting insular distribution in Hispaniola  

USGS Publications Warehouse

We investigated salinity and temperature effects on routine metabolic rate (RMR), temperature tolerance (CTMax, critical thermal maximum), and salinity tolerance of Limia melanonotata, a poecliid fish that occurs in west-central inland waters of Hispaniola. Routine metabolic rate and CTMax were measured in fish acclimated to three salinities (0, 30, and 60 ppt) and temperatures (25??, 30??, and 35??C) for nine temperature-salinity combinations. Salinity and temperature did not significantly interact in their effect on RMR. For combined salinity acclimations, adjusted RMR (ANCOVA) was significantly lower at 25??C than either 30?? or 35??C. For combined temperature acclimations, mean RMR was significantly lower at 60 ppt than either 0 or 30 ppt. Salinity and temperature had a significant interactive effect on temperature tolerance. Mean CTMax was significantly higher at 30?? than 25??C at all salinities, but at 35??C was significantly higher than at 25?? or 30??C only among fish acclimated in fresh water. Fish exposed to a chronic increase in salinity experienced most mortality in a salinity range of 70-107 ppt, with females exhibiting greater salinity tolerance than males. Limia melanonotata approaches the upper extreme in salinity and temperature tolerances known for poeciliids. Our results also suggest that L. melanonotata may reduce energy expenditures at environmental extremes to tolerate harsh conditions for extended periods. Despite its curythermal and euryhaline adaptations, L. melanonotata has a relatively restricted inland range in Hispaniola and is unknown from inshore brackish or marine habitats. The present distribution of this species and congeners may be the result of a combination of factors that include historical zoogeography and ecological requirements.

Haney, D. C.; Walsh, S. J.



Multi-Channel Seismic Images of Neogene Rifting in the Northern Mona Passage Between Puerto Rico and Hispaniola  

NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

Highly oblique (70°) convergence is occurring along the northeastern North America-Caribbean plate boundary offshore northern Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands. Complicating the tectonic setting is the oblique collision of the 20 km-thick SE Bahamas carbonate platform that impedes the northeasterly movement of Hispaniola, leaving Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands to separate along north-trending extensional structures in the Mona Passage. Over 220 km of multi-channel seismic data collected in 1995 on the R/V Maurice Ewing were processed to investigate the geometry and timing of the opening of the Mona Canyon, a 20-30-km-wide, 120-km-long, and 2-3-km-deep basinal feature within the northern Mona Passage and Puerto Rico trench. Multibeam bathymetry and sidescan sonar data were combined with the profile data to evaluate the activity of faults at the seafloor. These data reveal that the Mona Canyon is underlain by a half-graben structure that is imaged to 5.5 seconds two-way travel time (stwt), ~11 km below seafloor (bsf). The master fault bounding the eastern edge of the canyon forms a continuous fault over a distance of tens of kms, exhibits a throw of up to 5 stwt, and dips an average of 70° to the west. An antithetic fault forms the western edge of the Mona Canyon, can also be traced for tens of kms, exhibits a throw of up to 2 stwt, and has a large slump deposit along its base. The history and kinematics of fault motions can be deduced from the late Oligocene-Pliocene carbonate platform present on both sides of the faulted Mona Canyon. To the east (footwall of the master fault), the carbonate platform is ~0.7 km thick and horizontal. To the west (footwall of the antithetic normal fault) the platform is twice as thick (~1.4 km) and also horizontal. The thicker platform section to the west indicates that space was created by sub-horizontal sliding along the listric master fault at depth; the thinner platform section to the east suggests that this area was the upthrown footwall block. These relations indicate the age of the normal faulting is the same as the late Oligocene-Pliocene age of the carbonate platform. Normal faulting may be a consequence of early oblique-slip movements in the highly curved Caribbean arc and may precede the late Miocene-recent phase of oblique collision of the SE Bahamas carbonate platform. Future analysis will investigate the contribution of mass wasting and seafloor rupture associated with the canyon- bounding faults to the 1918 M 7.5 earthquake and tsunami that inundated western Puerto Rico.

Mondziel, S. A.; Grindlay, N. R.; Mann, P.; Escalona, A.



Historical perspective on seismic hazard to Hispaniola and the northeast Caribbean region  

E-print Network

-zone earthquakes. The May 2, 1787 earthquake, previously assigned an M 8­8.25, is probably only MI 6.9 and could be located north, west or SW of Puerto Rico. An MI 6.9 earthquake on July 11, 1785 was probably located north

ten Brink, Uri S.


Significant Earthquakes on the Enriquillo Fault System, Hispaniola, 15002010: Implications for Seismic Hazard  

E-print Network

earthquakes on the Enriquillo fault system in the eighteenth century. An intensity magnitude MI 6.6 earthquake the eastern end of the fault in the Dominican Republic, followed by the 21 November 1751 MI 6.6 earthquake

ten Brink, Uri S.


Outbreak of poliomyelitis in Hispaniola associated with circulating type 1 vaccine-derived poliovirus.  


An outbreak of paralytic poliomyelitis occurred in the Dominican Republic (13 confirmed cases) and Haiti (8 confirmed cases, including 2 fatal cases) during 2000-2001. All but one of the patients were either unvaccinated or incompletely vaccinated children, and cases occurred in communities with very low (7 to 40%) rates of coverage with oral poliovirus vaccine (OPV). The outbreak was associated with the circulation of a derivative of the type 1 OPV strain, probably originating from a single OPV dose given in 1998-1999. The vaccine-derived poliovirus associated with the outbreak had biological properties indistinguishable from those of wild poliovirus. PMID:11896235

Kew, Olen; Morris-Glasgow, Victoria; Landaverde, Mauricio; Burns, Cara; Shaw, Jing; Garib, Zacarías; André, Jean; Blackman, Elizabeth; Freeman, C Jason; Jorba, Jaume; Sutter, Roland; Tambini, Gina; Venczel, Linda; Pedreira, Cristina; Laender, Fernando; Shimizu, Hiroyuki; Yoneyama, Tetsuo; Miyamura, Tatsuo; van Der Avoort, Harrie; Oberste, M Steven; Kilpatrick, David; Cochi, Stephen; Pallansch, Mark; de Quadros, Ciro



Three new phylogenetic and biological Neurospora species: N. hispaniola, N. metzenbergii and N. perkinsii  

E-print Network

phylogenetic species (S1, PS2, and PS3) of P. brasiliensis was demonstrated. Despite being genetically isolated isolates), and PS3 (phylogenetic species 3; 21 isolates). Variations in the virulence and gene expression


Cenozoic sedimentary and deformational history of hispaniola, 1: southeastern Cordillera Central  

SciTech Connect

The Cordillera Central approximates an elongate (220 km), elevated (>3 km), thrust-bounded anticline cored by Cretaceous-Paleogene arc rocks and uplifted during Miocene to recent time by convergent strike-slip movements between the North American and Caribbean plates. The southeastern termination of the anticline plunges beneath a thick (>6 km), well-exposed marine clastic sedimentary sequence. Because uplift-related faulting is minimal in this hinge region of the Cordillera Central anticline, the authors have carried out detailed mapping of the area to determine (1) relation of Cretaceous-Paleogene arc basement to overlying Cenozoic sedimentary cover, and (2) Cenozoic deformational history of arc and basin sequences. Mapping has clearly distinguished three superimposed Cenozoic basins lying on arc basement. The lowest basin (basin 1) is Paleocene-Eocene in age and consists of alternations of arc-derived turbidies with interbedded pelagic limestone and red mudstone. In apparent conformity above this basin is an approximately 4-km thick marine clastic sequence of medial Eocene through early Miocene age (basin 2). These sediments consist of fining-upward turbiditic sequence derived from the northwest and northeast. Arc basement and overlying basins 1 and 2 were shortened approximately 25% in a short-lived, northwest-southeast-directed compressional event that resulted in the formation of large open synclines and tightly folded and faulted anticlines with fold amplitudes of 1-6 km. Underformed, medial Miocene sediments of a mixed clastic and carbonate shelf facies (basin 3) unconformably overlie the folded latest Oligocene-early Miocene rocks of basin 2 and thus constrain the age of folding as early to middle Miocene.

Heubeck, C.; Mann, P.



Analysis of vegetation patterns in the Hispaniola Island using AVHRR data  

Microsoft Academic Search

Tropical forest deforestation is an important concern and remote sensing techniques are key elements that can lead us to a better evaluation of its dynamics. The study of the spatial and temporal vegetation patterns by means of vegetation indexes, has been widely used at a global and regional scales. An important case of study are the transition zones between countries

P. Hernandez-Leal; M. Arbelo; J. Wilson



Analysis of vegetation patterns in the Hispaniola island using AVHRR data  

Microsoft Academic Search

Tropical forest deforestation is an important concern and remote sensing techniques are key elements that can lead us to a better evaluation of its dynamics. The study of the spatial and temporal vegetation patterns by means of vegetation indexes has been widely used at a global and regional scale. Transition zones between countries with different cultures and environmental policy are

P. A. Hernández-Leal; M. Arbelo; J. S. Wilson; A. M. Díaz



Bulletin of the Seismological Society of America Significant Earthquakes on the Enriquillo Fault System, Hispaniola, 1500-2010  

E-print Network

magnitude MI6.6 earthquake in 1701 occurred near the location of the 2010 Haiti earthquake and the accounts the eastern end of the fault in the Dominican Republic, followed by the November 21, 1751 MI6.6 earthquake century. An intensity magnitude MI6.6 earthquake in 1701 occurred near the location of the 2010 Haiti

ten Brink, Uri S.


Provenance of middle to late Miocene clastic sedimentary rocks in the central to eastern Cibao basin, northern Hispaniola  

E-print Network

by electron microprobe analysis indicate derivation from plutonic, metamorphic, and possibly volcanic sources. Trace elements and REE data demonstrate that the middle and late Miocene sediments in the central to eastern Cibao basin display two geochemically...

Yao, Meng



Historical perspective on Caribbean seismic hazard, ten Brink, Bakun, Flores Historical perspective on seismic hazard to Hispaniola and the northeast Caribbean  

E-print Network

Historical perspective on Caribbean seismic hazard, ten Brink, Bakun, Flores Historical perspective-American/Caribbean plate boundary from 500 years of historical earthquake damage reports. The 2010 Haiti earthquakes and intensity magnitude MI which best fit all the reported damage for historical earthquakes. Many events

ten Brink, Uri S.


Reply to a comment by Carol S. Prentice, Paul Mann, and Luis R. Pea on: "Historical perspective on seismic hazard to Hispaniola and  

E-print Network

Reply to a comment by Carol S. Prentice, Paul Mann, and Luis R. Peña on: "Historical perspective by Carol S. Prentice, Paul Mann, and Luis R. Pen~ a on: "Historical perspective on seismic hazard interpretation of the paleoseismic and TB2011's interpretation of the historical data are both plausible

ten Brink, Uri S.


Dental anthropology and paleodemography of the precolumbian populations of hispaniola from the third millennium B.C. to the Spanish conquest  

Microsoft Academic Search

The demography and dental traits of the skeletal samples from the necropoles of Cueva Roja (IIrd millennium b.C.), El Soco\\u000a (800 a.D) and Juan Dolio (1400 a.D.) have been analyzed. The preceramic sample from Cueva Roja consists of some 50 individuals,\\u000a the one from El Soco consists of 158 individuals and the one from Juan Dolio of 108 individuals. The

A. Coppa; A. Cucina; B. Chiarelli; F. Luna Calderon; D. Mancinelli



From intra-oceanic subduction to arc accretion and arc-continent collision: Insights from the structural evolution of the Río San Juan metamorphic complex, northern Hispaniola  

NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

The Río San Juan metamorphic complex exposes a segment of a high-pressure subduction-accretionary complex built during Caribbean island arc-North America continental margin convergence. It is composed of accreted arc- and oceanic-derived metaigneous rocks, serpentinized peridotites and minor metasediments forming a structural pile. Combined detailed mapping, structural and metamorphic analysis, and geochronology show that the deformation can be divided into five main events (D1-D5). An early subduction-related D1 deformation and M1 metamorphism produced greenschist (mafic rocks of the Gaspar Hernández peridotite-tectonite), blueschist and eclogite (metamafic blocks in the Jagua Clara mélange), high-P epidote-amphibolite and eclogite (Cuaba unit), and lower blueschist and greenschist-facies conditions (Morrito unit). This was followed by M2 decompression and cooling in the blueschist, greenschist and low-P amphibolite-facies conditions. The shape of the retrograde P-T path, the age of the exhumation-related D2 structures, and the tectonic significance of D2 deformation are different in each structural unit. Published U-Pb and 40Ar/39Ar plateau ages and T-t/P-t estimations reveal diachronic Turonian-Coniacian to Maastrichtian retrograde M2 metamorphism in the different structural units of the complex, during a consistent D2 top-to-the-NE/ENE tectonic transport. Regionally, a similar top-to-the-ENE tectonic transport also took place in the metasedimentary nappes of the Samaná complex during the Eocene to earliest Miocene. This kinematic compatibility indicates a general northeastward progradation of deformation in the northern Caribbean convergent margin, as the successive tectonic incorporation of arc, oceanic and continental-derived terrains to the developing Caribbean subduction-accretionary complex took place. D3-D5 deformations are discontinuous and much less penetrative, recording the evolution from ductile to brittle conditions of deformation in the complex. The D3 event substantially modified the nappe-stack and produced open folds with amplitudes up to kilometer-scale. The Late Paleocene-Eocene D4 structures are ductile to ductile-brittle thrusts and inverse shear bands. D5 is a Tertiary, entirely brittle deformation that had considerable influence in the geometry of the whole complex. From the Miocene to the Present, it has been cut and laterally displaced by a D5 sinistral strike-slip fault system associated with the Septentrional fault zone.

Escuder-Viruete, Javier; Valverde-Vaquero, Pablo; Rojas-Agramonte, Yamirka; Jabites, Janet; Pérez-Estaún, Andrés



The tectonics of eastern Hispaniola: an investigation into the formation and episodic uplift of the Beata Ridge and the geologic and velocity structure of the Cibao basin  

E-print Network

largest of the Greater Antillean islands with a land area of approximately 80, 000 kmz. Physiographically, the western half of the island is characterized by a parallel series of mountains and intermontaine valleys. These topographic features trend... largest of the Greater Antillean islands with a land area of approximately 80, 000 kmz. Physiographically, the western half of the island is characterized by a parallel series of mountains and intermontaine valleys. These topographic features trend...

Boucher, Paul James



The effect of sociocultural factors on the quality of relations of the United States with Hispaniola: analysis of the American military occupation of Haiti and the Dominican Republic (1915-1934)  

E-print Network

good coat of whitewash, as everybody expected" (Balch, 1969:122). If the occupation prepared the ground for the future dictatorship of the Duvalier dynasty, such is not readily apparent when looking at the succession of regimes, beginning... good coat of whitewash, as everybody expected" (Balch, 1969:122). If the occupation prepared the ground for the future dictatorship of the Duvalier dynasty, such is not readily apparent when looking at the succession of regimes, beginning...

Alvarez, Fausto B.



Land Tenure and Reform in Haiti Amber Bethell  

E-print Network

the island of Hispaniola in 1492. The wealth of the colony came from gold exports. The original inhabitants and the collapse of plantations. The aristocrats lost their land and the people owned or squatted on their own

Onsrud, Harlan J.


7 CFR 319.56-2 - Definitions.  

Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

...States. West Indies . The foreign islands lying between North and South America, the Caribbean Sea, and the Atlantic Ocean, divided into the Bahamas, the Greater Antilles (including Hispaniola), and the Lesser Antilles...



Satellite Movie Shows Bertha Becoming Second Atlantic Hurricane  

NASA Video Gallery

This animation of NOAA's GOES-East satellite imagery from August 2 through 4 shows the movement of Tropical Storm Bertha over Puerto Rico, Hispaniola and the Bahamas. It became a hurricane on Augus...


The Life of Hurricane Irene from Caribbean to Canada  

NASA Video Gallery

An animation of satellite observations from August 21 through August 29 showing the birth of Hurricane Irene in the Caribbean and her track over Puerto Rico, Hispaniola, the Bahamas, the U.S. East ...


Linnaeosicyos (Cucurbitaceae): a New Genus for Trichosanthes amara, the Caribbean Sister Species of all Sicyeae  

E-print Network

Trichosanthes has flowers with strikingly fringed petals, and Linnaeus therefore placed a species from, Linnaeus, Plumier. With about 100 accepted species, Trichosanthes L. is the largest genus of the family. amara L., a species from the Caribbean island of Hispaniola in the Greater Antilles. Linnaeus (1753

Renner, Susanne


Financing for Malaria Elimination  

E-print Network

and Development PAHO Pan-American Health Organisation PEPFAR President's Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief PMI Elimination of Malaria in Mesoamerica and the island of Hispaniola EU European Union GCC Gulf Cooperation Council GMAP Global Malaria Action Plan IDA International Development Association IDB Inter-American

Klein, Ophir


Cranial morphology and bite force in Chamaeleolis lizards – Adaptations to molluscivory?  

Microsoft Academic Search

Anolis lizards have become a model system for the study of adaptive radiations as species with similar morphologies occupying similar habitats have arisen independently on all the larger islands in the Caribbean. However, on both, Cuba and Hispaniola unique forms have evolved that seemingly have no counterparts on any of the other Caribbean islands. Anoles of the genus Chamaeleolis comprise

Anthony Herrel; Veronika Holanova



Mosquitoborne Infections after Hurricane Jeanne, Haiti, 2004  

PubMed Central

After Hurricane Jeanne in September 2004, surveillance for mosquitoborne diseases in Gonaïves, Haiti, identified 3 patients with malaria, 2 with acute dengue infections, and 2 with acute West Nile virus infections among 116 febrile patients. These are the first reported human West Nile virus infections on the island of Hispaniola. PMID:17479899

Hunsperger, Elizabeth; Long, Earl; Schurch, Julia; Jain, Seema; Colindres, Rom; Lerebours, Gerald; Bernard, Yves-Marie; Dobbins, James Goodman; Brown, Mathew; Clark, Gary G.



Land Tenure Development in Puerto Rico Cathy Bryan  

E-print Network

there has always been someone meddling in their economy and political affairs. If it wasn Puerto Rico's economic, political, and social history that has molded its land tenure system over time in the central West Indies (see Figure 1). Along with Cuba, Jamaica, and Hispaniola (Dominican Republic and Haiti

Onsrud, Harlan J.


Effects of land use history on hurricane damage and recovery in a neotropical forest  

E-print Network

Effects of land use history on hurricane damage and recovery in a neotropical forest M. Uriarte1 disturbance, Hispaniola, Land use history, Los Haitises Abstract Prior land-use history might influence damage and recovery of plant communities from natural disturbance. We examined effects of previous agricultural land

Flecker, Alex


ORIGINAL ARTICLE doi:10.1111/j.1558-5646.2007.00172.x  

E-print Network

(Loxia megaplaga) to its sister taxa the North American white-winged crossbill (Loxia leucoptera Crossbills (Aves: Loxia) and several conifers have coevolved in predator­prey arms races over the last 10 leucoptera). The Hispaniolan crossbill is endemic to Hispaniola whereas Cuba lacks crossbills. In addition

Parchman, Thomas L.


Earthquake Dynamics in the Greater Antilles Subduction Zone  

Microsoft Academic Search

The Greater Antilles subduction zone lies north of the densely populated islands of Hispaniola, Puerto Rico, and the Virgin Islands. A large earthquake on this subduction zone could cause significant structural damage and human suffering, and could furthermore trigger a large tsunami with equally devastating effects. The near-shore hanging wall of the subduction zone is cut by at least two

D. D. Oglesby; E. L. Geist



Submarine landslide as the source for the October 11, 1918 Mona Passage tsunami: Observations and modeling  

Microsoft Academic Search

The October 11, 1918 ML 7.5 earthquake in the Mona Passage between Hispaniola and Puerto Rico generated a local tsunami that claimed approximately 100 lives along the western coast of Puerto Rico. The area affected by this tsunami is now significantly more populated. Newly acquired high-resolution bathymetry and seismic reflection lines in the Mona Passage show a fresh submarine landslide

A. M. López-Venegas; E. L. Geist



First Caribbean Floricomus (Araneae: Linyphiidae), a new fossil species in Miocene Dominican Republic amber. A new synonymy for the extant North American fauna  

Microsoft Academic Search

The new species Floricomus fossilis (Araneae: Linyphiidae) is described from Miocene Dominican Republic amber. This is the first fossil record of Floricomus, extending its known geological range by 15–20 Ma, and is the first record of the genus outside North America and Canada. Extant species may exist on Hispaniola, given the similarities between the known fossil and extant faunas. Most

David Penney



Infection, Genetics and Evolution 4 (2004) 514 Phylogenetic reconstruction of Mycobacterium tuberculosis within  

E-print Network

tuberculosis within four settings of the Caribbean region: tree comparative analyse and first appraisal region (Guadeloupe, Martinique, Cuba and Haiti). A set of 47 alleles, split into 26 shared and 21 unique of the "sugar islands" (Hispaniola now divided into Haiti and the Dominican Republic, St Kitts and others

Roche, Benjamin


Conservation and management of the American crocodile  

Microsoft Academic Search

The American crocodile is a rare and endangered species, the range of which has contracted to disjunct locations such as Hispaniola, Jamaica, Cuba, Panama, and southern Florida. In an attempt to determine what factors might be limiting population growth, an extensive collaborative research program was conducted in 1978–82 in southern Florida. Limiting factors explicitly studied included climate, hurricanes, population dispersion,

James A. Kushlan



Oblique collision in the northeastern Caribbean from GPS measurements and geological observations  

NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

Previous Caribbean GPS studies have shown that the rigid interior of the Caribbean plate is moving east-northeastward (070°) at a rate of 18-20 ± 3 mm/yr relative to North America. This direction implies maximum oblique convergence between the island of Hispaniola on the Caribbean plate and the 22-27-km-thick crust of the Bahama carbonate platform on the adjacent North America plate. We present a tectonic interpretation of a 15-site GPS network which spans the Hispaniola-Bahama oblique collision zone and includes stable plate interior sites on both the North America and Caribbean plates. Measurements span the time period of 1994-1999. In a North America reference frame, GPS velocities in Puerto Rico, St. Croix, and the Lesser Antilles indicate that these areas move as a single block in an east-northeast direction (070°) at a rate of 19-20 mm/yr consistent with the movement of the rigid interior of the Caribbean plate. GPS velocities at six sites in central and eastern Hispaniola (Dominican Republic) show drastically different behavior with more eastwardly strikes (080°) and much slower rates (4-17 mm/yr) than areas of the stable Caribbean plate. The boundary between the relatively slower-moving Hispaniola collisional zone and the relatively faster-moving, uncollided Puerto Rico-Virgin Islands area is the Mona Passage where late Neogene rifting occurs in a broad zone. Elastic modeling favors strain partitioning with oblique slip on the outer, low-angle submarine thrust faults (North Hispaniola, Muertos) and strike slip on the inner, subvertical subaerial, strike-slip faults (Septentrional, Enriquillo).

Mann, Paul; Calais, Eric; Ruegg, Jean-Claude; Demets, Charles; Jansma, Pamela E.; Mattioli, Glen S.



Tsunamis triggered by the 12 January 2010 Earthquake in Haiti  

NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

On 12 January 2010 a magnitude Mw 7.0 earthquake occurred 25 km west-southwest of Haiti’s Capital of Port-au-Prince, which resulted in more than 230,000 fatalities. In addition tsunami waves triggered by the earthquake caused at least 3 fatalities at Petit Paradis. Unfortunately, the people of Haiti had neither ancestral knowledge nor educational awareness of tsunami hazards despite the 1946 Dominican Republic tsunami at Hispaniola’s northeast coast. In sharp contrast Sri Lankan UN-soldiers on duty at Jacmel self-evacuated given the memory of the 2004 Indian Ocean tsunami. The International Tsunami Survey Team (ITST) documented flow depths, runup heights, inundation distances, sediment deposition, damage patterns at various scales, and performance of the man-made infrastructure and impact on the natural environment. The 31 January to 7 February 2010 ITST covered the greater Bay of Port-au-Prince and more than 100 km of Hispaniola’s south coast between Pedernales, Dominican Republic and Jacmel, Haiti. The Hispaniola survey data includes more than 20 runup and flow depth measurements. The tsunami impacts peaked with maximum flow depths exceeding 3 m both at Petit Paradis inside the Bay of Grand Goâve located 45 km west-southwest of Port-au-Prince and at Jacmel on Haiti’s south coast. A significant variation in tsunami impact was observed on Hispaniola and tsunami runup of more than 1 m was still observed at Pedernales in the Dominican Republic. Jacmel, which is near the center of the south coast, represents an unfortunate example of a village and harbor that was located for protection from storm waves but is vulnerable to tsunami waves with runup doubling from the entrance to the head of the bay. Inundation and damage was limited to less than 100 m inland at both Jacmel and Petit Paradis. Differences in wave period were documented between the tsunami waves at Petit Paradis and Jacmel. The Petit Paradis tsunami is attributed to a coastal submarine landslide. Field observations, video recordings, satellite imagery and numerical modelling are presented. The team interviewed numerous eyewitnesses and educated residents about the tsunami hazard. Community-based education and awareness programs are essential to save lives in locales at risk from locally generated tsunamis. Petit Paradis landslide scar with tree located 70m offshore

Fritz, H. M.; Hillaire, J. V.; Molière, E.; Mohammed, F.; Wei, Y.



Hispaniolan Hemilophini (Coleoptera, Cerambycidae, Lamiinae)  

PubMed Central

Abstract The Tribe Hemilophini (Lamiinae) is reviewed for Hispaniola and an identification key is provided. Fifteen species are now known from the island, including one new species of Adesmus (Adesmus fortunei from Pedernales and La Vega Provinces, Dominican Republic), one new species of Oedudes (Oedudes anulatus from Peravia and La Vega Provinces, Dominican Republic), and five new species of Calocosmus (Calocosmus contortus from San Cristóbal Province, Calocosmus punctatus from Peravia Province, Calocosmus rawlinsi from Elías Piña Province, Calocosmus robustus from La Vega Province, and Calocosmus thonalmus from La Altagracia Province, all in the Dominican Republic). Oedudes and Adesmus are new island and country records for Hispaniola and Dominican Republic, respectively. Calocosmus holosericeus Gahan is a new synonym of Calocosmus janus Bates. In addition to the new species, five new country records and four new island records are presented for Calocosmus. PMID:23653499

Lingafelter, Steven W.



Merremia discoidesperma : Its taxonomy and capacity of its seeds for ocean drifting  

Microsoft Academic Search

Merremia discoidesperma (Donn. Sm.) O’Donell (Mary’s-bean) is a rarely collected and inadequately described high climbing woody liana of Chiapas,\\u000a Mexico; Guatemala; Costa Rica; Hispaniola; and Cuba. There is only one record of this species being cultivated and this from\\u000a Guanajuato, Mexico in 1894, though seeds are used in folk remedies. These seeds are topographically unlike other known convolvulaceous\\u000a seeds, thus

Charles R. Gunn



Cristóbal de Llerena and His Satiric entremés  

E-print Network

opinion in early colonial literature, Llerena is also a pioneer in his employment of the grotesque for satiric purposes. His interlude is a good example of the pre-Quevedan concept of this technique, which appropriately conveys the startling issues he...FAIMQ88 39 Cristóbal de Iierena and His Satiric Entremés Julie Greer Johnson The documented history of the Dominican theatre begins soon after the Spaniards' arrival on Hispaniola. The existence of tribal areitos, a combination of music, dance...

Johnson, Julie Greer



Plant mites of the Dominican Republic, with a description of a new species of Petrobia (Tetranychina) Wainstein, 1960 (Acari, Prostigmata, Tetranychidae) and a key to the species of this subgenus.  


Fourteen mite species of plant-associated mites of the suborder Prostigmata are reported from the Dominican Republic. Four of these refer to new findings for the country, including Petrobia (Tetranychina) hispaniola n. sp. Sánchez & Flechtmann, described from specimens collected from leaves of Citrus sp. (Rutaceae) and Rosa sp. (Rosaceae). A key for the separation of the world species of Petrobia (Tetranychina) is presented.  PMID:25112265

Martínez, Leocadia Sánchez; Flechtmann, Carlos H W; De Moraes, Gilberto J



Excretion of Wild-Type and Vaccine-Derived Poliovirus in the Feces of Poliovirus Receptor-Transgenic Mice  

Microsoft Academic Search

The emergence of circulating vaccine-derived poliovirus (cVDPV) strains in suboptimally vaccinated popu- lations is a serious threat to the global poliovirus eradication. The genetic determinants for the transmissibility phenotype of polioviruses, and in particularly of cVDPV strains, are currently unknown. Here we describe the fecal excretion of wild-type poliovirus, oral polio vaccine, and cVDPV (Hispaniola) strains after intraperitoneal injection in

Hein J. Boot; Daniella T. J. Kasteel; Anne-Marie Buisman; Tjeerd G. Kimman



Obolinga (Mimosaceae)—its natural history  

Microsoft Academic Search

Obolinga zanonii is endemic to the mountain chain of the Sierra de Bahoruco (Dominican Republic)-Massif de la Selle (Haiti) in southern Hispaniola.\\u000a Its habitat is the humid broadleaf forest (“cloud forest”) at approximately 1500 m. Little is known about the dispersal of\\u000a the seeds, but many fall and germinate below the parent tree. Germination in a nursery occurs in about

Thomas A. Zanoni



Re-emergence of Cholera in the Americas: Risks, Susceptibility, and Ecology  

PubMed Central

Background: The re-emergence of cholera in Haiti has established a new reservoir for the seventh cholera pandemic which threatens to spread to other countries in the Americas. Materials and Methods: Statistics from this new epidemic are compared to the 1991 Peru epidemic, which demonstrated the speed and complexity with which this disease can spread from country to country. Environmental factors implicated in the spread of Vibrio cholerae such as ocean currents and temperatures, as well as biotic factors from zooplankton to waterfowl pose a risk for many countries in the Americas. Results: The movement of people and goods from Hispaniola are mostly destined for North America, but occur to some degree throughout the Americas. These modes of transmission, and the probability of uncontrolled community spread beyond Hispaniola, however, are completely dependent upon risk factors within these countries such as water quality and availability of sanitation. Although North America has excellent coverage of these deterrents to the spread of infectious gastrointestinal diseases, many countries throughout Latin America and the Caribbean lack these basic services and infrastructures. Conclusions: In order to curb the immediate spread of cholera in Hispaniola, treatment availability should be expanded to all parts of the island and phase II epidemic management initiatives must be developed. PMID:23055647

Poirier, Mathieu JP; Izurieta, Ricardo; Malavade, Sharad S; McDonald, Michael D



Late Cenozoic alkaline volcanism in the northwestern Caribbean - Tectonic setting and Sr isotopic characteristics  

NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

The northwestern corner of the Caribbean plate has at least sixteen centers of alkalic volcanism, most of which is Quaternary in age. Sr-87/Sr-86 ratios of the rocks in these centers are used to distinguish three geographical groups: a low-ratio group (0.7026-0.7031) at the Nicaraguan Rise, an intermediate-ratio group (0.7036-0.7038) in northeastern Costa Rica, and a high-ratio group (0.7047-0.7063) in Hispaniola. It is suggested that the increased radiogenic strontium in both Costa Rica and Hispaniola may have come from volatile-rich fluids escaping from adjacent subducting slabs of oceanic crust. The isotopic differences between the two areas is explained by the relative longevity and high rate of subduction in Costa Rica compared to that in Hispaniola. The Costa Rican alkaline rocks cover a segment of the Cocos plate which is being subducted at a smaller angle (about 35 deg) than at the rest of the Central American arc.

Wadge, G.; Wooden, J. L.



Relative motion between the Caribbean and North American plates and related boundary zone deformation from a decade of GPS observations  

NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

Global Positioning System (GPS) measurements in 1986, 1994, and 1995 at sites in Dominican Republic, Puerto Rico, Cuba, and Grand Turk define the velocity of the Caribbean plate relative to North America. The data show eastward motion of the Caribbean plate at a rate of 21 ± 1 mm/yr (1 standard error ) in the vicinity of southern Dominican Republic, a factor of 2 higher than the NUVEL-1A plate motion model prediction of 11 ± 3 mm/yr. Independent measurements on San Andres Island, and an Euler vector derived from these data, also suggest a rate that is much higher than the NUVEL-1A model. Available data, combined with simple elastic strain models, give the following slip rate estimates for major left-lateral faults in Hispaniola: (1) the North Hispaniola fault offshore the north coast of Hispaniola, 4 ± 3 mm/yr; (2) the Septentrional fault in northern Dominican Republic, 8 ± 3 mm/yr; and (3) the Enriquillo fault in southern Dominican Republic and Haiti, 8 ± 4 mm yr. The relatively high plate motion rate and fault slip rates suggested by our study, combined with evidence for strain accumulation and historical seismicity, imply that seismic risk in the region may be higher than previous estimates based on low plate rate/low fault slip rate models and the relatively low rate of seismicity over the last century.

Dixon, Timothy H.; Farina, Frederic; Demets, Charles; Jansma, Pamela; Mann, Paul; Calais, Eric



Spatiotemporal dynamics of dissemination of non-pandemic HIV-1 subtype B clades in the Caribbean region.  


The Human immunodeficiency virus type-1 (HIV-1) epidemic in the Caribbean region is mostly driven by subtype B; but information about the pattern of viral spread in this geographic region is scarce and different studies point to quite divergent models of viral dissemination. In this study, we reconstructed the spatiotemporal and population dynamics of the HIV-1 subtype B epidemic in the Caribbean. A total of 1,806 HIV-1 subtype B pol sequences collected from 17 different Caribbean islands between 1996 and 2011 were analyzed together with sequences from the United States (n?=?525) and France (n?=?340) included as control. Maximum Likelihood phylogenetic analyses revealed that HIV-1 subtype B infections in the Caribbean are driven by dissemination of the pandemic clade (BPANDEMIC) responsible for most subtype B infections across the world, and older non-pandemic lineages (BCAR) characteristics of the Caribbean region. The non-pandemic BCAR strains account for >40% of HIV-1 infections in most Caribbean islands; with exception of Cuba and Puerto Rico. Bayesian phylogeographic analyses indicate that BCAR strains probably arose in the island of Hispaniola (Haiti/Dominican Republic) around the middle 1960s and were later disseminated to Trinidad and Tobago and to Jamaica between the late 1960s and the early 1970s. In the following years, the BCAR strains were also disseminated from Hispaniola and Trinidad and Tobago to other Lesser Antilles islands at multiple times. The BCAR clades circulating in Hispaniola, Jamaica and Trinidad and Tobago appear to have experienced an initial phase of exponential growth, with mean estimated growth rates of 0.35-0.45 year(-1), followed by a more recent stabilization since the middle 1990s. These results demonstrate that non-pandemic subtype B lineages have been widely disseminated through the Caribbean since the late 1960s and account for an important fraction of current HIV-1 infections in the region. PMID:25148215

Cabello, Marina; Mendoza, Yaxelis; Bello, Gonzalo



West Nile virus transmission in resident birds, Dominican Republic  

E-print Network

as positive for antibodies to WNV. The evidence for local WNV transmission in the Dominican Republic indicates risk for West Nile fever and meningoencephalitis in the human, equine, and avian pop- ulations of Hispaniola. We suggest that WNV be consid- ered...: URL: 4. McLean RG, Ubico SR, Bourne D, Komar N. West Nile virus in live- stock and wildlife. Curr Top Microbiol Immunol 2002;267:271–308. 5. Rappole JH, Derrickson SR, Hubalek Z. Migratory...

Komar, Oliver; Robbins, Mark B.; Klenk, Kaci; Blitvich, Bradley J.; Marlenee, Nicole L.; Burkhalter, Kristen L.; Gubler, Duane J.; Gonzá lvez, Guillermo; Peñ a, Carlos J.; Peterson, A. Townsend; Komar, Nicholas



Extinction and biogeography in the Caribbean: new evidence from a fossil riodinid butterfly in Dominican amber.  

PubMed Central

We describe a new species of extinct riodinid butterfly, Voltinia dramba, from Oligo-Miocene Dominican amber (15-25 Myr ago). This appears to be the first butterfly to be taxonomically described from amber, and the first adult riodinid fossil. The series of five specimens represents probably the best-preserved fossil record for any lepidopteran. The phenomenon of extant Voltinia females ovipositing on arboreal epiphytes probably explains the discovery of multiple female V. dramba specimens in amber. Voltinia dramba appears to be one of many extinct butterfly species on Hispaniola. The northwestern Mexican distribution of the explicitly hypothesized sister species, the extant V. danforthi, supports the hypothesis that V. dramba reached Hispaniola by the 'proto-Greater Antillean arc', dating the divergence of V. dramba and V. danforthi to 40-50 Myr ago. This date is contemporaneous with the oldest known butterfly fossils, and implies a more ancient date of origin for many of the higher-level butterfly taxa than is often conceded. PMID:15255097

Hall, Jason P. W.; Robbins, Robert K.; Harvey, Donald J.



Earthquake Dynamics in the Greater Antilles Subduction Zone  

NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

The Greater Antilles subduction zone lies north of the densely populated islands of Hispaniola, Puerto Rico, and the Virgin Islands. A large earthquake on this subduction zone could cause significant structural damage and human suffering, and could furthermore trigger a large tsunami with equally devastating effects. The near-shore hanging wall of the subduction zone is cut by at least two major left-lateral strike-slip faults (the Septentrional Fault and Bunce Fault), which may have earthquakes both independently and in conjunction with the main plate boundary thrust. Further complicating matters, the subduction zone has a roughly 23 degree change in strike at the eastern edge of Hispaniola. To better understand the earthquake and tsunami hazard in this region, we use the 3D finite element method to perform dynamic spontaneous rupture models on this complex fault system. We find that the regional stress field is resolved quite differently on the various thrust and strike-slip fault segments, leading to large differences in the ability of rupture to propagate on the different segments. Static stress differences and dynamic stress interactions lead to asymmetrical behavior between the fault segments. In particular, rupture propagation from the strike-slip faults to the plate boundary thrust seems unlikely, but rupture propagation from the plate boundary thrust to the strike-slip faults appears more possible. We will discuss these results in the context of potential tsunamis in the region.

Oglesby, D. D.; Geist, E. L.; ten Brink, U. S.



Untangling intra- and interspecific effects on body size clines reveals divergent processes structuring convergent patterns in anolis lizards.  


Abstract Bergmann's rule-the tendency for body size to increase in colder environments-remains controversial today, despite 150 years of research. Considerable debate has revolved around whether the rule applies within or among species. However, this debate has generally not considered that clade-level relationships are caused by both intra- and interspecific effects. In this article, we implement a novel approach that allows for the separation of intra- and interspecific components of trait-environment relationships. We apply this approach to body size clines in two Caribbean clades of Anolis lizards and discover that their similar body size gradients are constructed in very different ways. We find inverse Bergmann's clines-high-elevation lizards are smaller bodied-for both the cybotes clade on Hispaniola and the sagrei clade on Cuba. However, on Hispaniola, the inverse cline is driven by interspecific differences, whereas intraspecific variation is responsible for the inverse cline on Cuba. Our results suggest that similar body size clines can be constructed through differing evolutionary and ecological processes, namely, through local adaptation or phenotypic plasticity (intraspecific clines) and/or size-ordered spatial sorting (interspecific clines). We propose that our approach can help integrate a divided research program by focusing on how the combined effects of intra- and interspecific processes can enhance or erode clade-level relationships at large biogeographic scales. PMID:25325747

Muñoz, Martha M; Wegener, Johanna E; Algar, Adam C



Accounts of damage from historical earthquakes in the northeastern Caribbean to aid in the determination of their location and intensity magnitudes  

USGS Publications Warehouse

Documentation of an event in the past depended on the population and political trends of the island, and the availability of historical documents is limited by the physical resource digitization schedule and by the copyright laws of each archive. Examples of documents accessed are governors' letters, newspapers, and other circulars published within the Caribbean, North America, and Western Europe. Key words were used to search for publications that contain eyewitness accounts of various large earthquakes. Finally, this catalog provides descriptions of damage to buildings used in previous studies for the estimation of moment intensity (MI) and location of significantly damaging or felt earthquakes in Hispaniola and in the northeastern Caribbean, all of which have been described in other studies.

Flores, Claudia H.; ten Brink, Uri S.; Bakun, William H.



An extinct monkey from Haiti and the origins of the Greater Antillean primates  

PubMed Central

A new extinct Late Quaternary platyrrhine from Haiti, Insulacebus toussaintiana, is described here from the most complete Caribbean subfossil primate dentition yet recorded, demonstrating the likely coexistence of two primate species on Hispaniola. Like other Caribbean platyrrhines, I. toussaintiana exhibits primitive features resembling early Middle Miocene Patagonian fossils, reflecting an early derivation before the Amazonian community of modern New World anthropoids was configured. This, in combination with the young age of the fossils, provides a unique opportunity to examine a different parallel radiation of platyrrhines that survived into modern times, but is only distantly related to extant mainland forms. Their ecological novelty is indicated by their unique dental proportions, and by their relatively large estimated body weights, possibly an island effect, which places the group in a size class not exploited by mainland South American monkeys. Several features tie the new species to the extinct Jamaican monkey Xenothrix mcgregori, perhaps providing additional evidence for an inter-Antillean clade. PMID:21282603

Cooke, Siobhan B.; Rosenberger, Alfred L.; Turvey, Samuel



Paleoseismicity of the North American-Caribbean plate boundary (Septentrional fault), Dominican Republic  

USGS Publications Warehouse

The Septentrional fault zone, the major North American-Caribbean plate-boundary fault in Hispaniola, is a likely source of large earthquakes in the Dominican Republic. An excavation into a Holocene alluvial fan deposited across the fault in the central Cibao Valley, Dominican Republic, provides evidence that it has been at least 430 yr and probably more than 740 yr since the last ground-rupturing earthquake along this segment of the fault. On the basis of these data and published estimates of the plate-tectonic slip rate, it is proposed that the Septentrional fault is a source of high seismic potential in the densely populated and rapidly developing Cibao Valley in the northern Dominican Republic. -Authors

Prentice, C. S.; Mann, P.; Taylor, F. W.; Burr, G.; Valastro, S.



Correlation between Anolis lizard dewlap phenotype and environmental variation indicates adaptive divergence of a signal important to sexual selection and species recognition.  


Although the importance of signals involved in species recognition and sexual selection to speciation is widely recognized, the processes that underlie signal divergence are still a matter of debate. Several possible processes have been hypothesized, including genetic drift, arbitrary sexual selection, and adaptation to local signaling environments. We use comparative analyses to investigate whether the remarkable geographic variation of dewlap phenotype in a Hispaniolan trunk Anolis lizard (A. distichus) is a result of adaptive signal divergence to heterogeneous environments. We recover a repeated pattern of divergence in A. distichus dewlap color, pattern, and size with environmental variation across Hispaniola. These results are aligned with ecological models of signal divergence and provide strong evidence for dewlap adaptation to local signaling environments. We also find that A. distichus dewlaps vary with the environment in a different manner to other previously studied anoles, thus expanding upon previous predictions on the direction dewlaps will diverge in perceptual color space in response to the environment. PMID:23356628

Ng, Julienne; Landeen, Emily L; Logsdon, Ryane M; Glor, Richard E



Ancient differentiation in the single-island avian radiation of endemic Hispaniolan chat-tanagers (Aves: Calyptophilus).  


The simple geographic structure of island systems often makes them tractable for studies of the patterns and processes of biological diversification. The Calyptophilus chat-tanagers of Hispaniola are of general evolutionary interest because their multiple lineages might have arisen on a single island, of conservation concern because several isolated populations are nearly extinct, and taxonomically ambiguous because they have been variously lumped or split into one to four species. To explore the context of diversification of the seven extant Calyptophilus populations, we conducted a multilocus coalescent analysis based on sequences of mitochondrial ND2 and three nuclear intron loci. We then compared patterns of phylogeographic genetic variation with the morphological differences that distinguish these populations. Mitochondrial haplotypes formed two reciprocally monophyletic groups separated by a large magnitude of nucleotide divergence. Intron structure largely paralleled the geographic grouping pattern of the mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA), but these groups were only reciprocally monophyletic at one of the three introns. Also, the magnitude of between-group divergence was much lower in the introns than mtDNA genealogies. Multilocus coalescent analyses inferred a nonzero divergence time between these two major geographic groups, but suggested that they have experienced a low level of gene flow. All four markers showed substantial allele sharing within each of the two groups, demonstrating that many now separated montane populations do not have long histories of isolation. Considered in concert, our multilocus phylogeographic reconstructions support the recognition of two species within the Calyptophilus complex, and raise the possibility that these taxa differentiated prior to the fusion of the two palaeo-islands that form present-day Hispaniola. PMID:17845436

Townsend, Andrea K; Rimmer, Christopher C; Latta, Steven C; Lovette, Irby J



Collisional zones in Puerto Rico and the northern Caribbean  

NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

Puerto Rico is an amalgamation of island arc terranes that has recorded the deformational and tectonic history of the North American-Caribbean Plate boundary. Four collisional zones indicate the contractional events that have occurred at the plate boundary. Metamorphism and deformation of Middle Jurassic to Early Cretaceous oceanic lithosphere during the Early Cretaceous indicate the earliest collisional event. Then, an ophiolitic mélange, mostly comprised of blocks of the metamorphosed oceanic lithosphere, was formed and emplaced in the backarc region during the Turonian-Coniacian deformational event. A possible collision with a buoyant block in the North American Plate caused late Maastrichtian-early Paleocene contraction that created fold-and-thrust belts and the remobilization and uplift of serpentinite bodies in the Southwest Block. Late Eocene-early Oligocene transpression was localized along the Southern and Northern Puerto Rico fault zones, which occur north and south of large granodiorite intrusions in the strong Central Block. The deformation was accommodated in pure shear domains of fold-and-thrust belts and conjugate strike-slip faults, and simple shear domains of large mostly left-lateral faults. In addition, it reactivated faults in the weak Southwest Block. This island-wide transpression is the result of a Greater Antilles arc and continental North American collision. The kinematic model of the structures described in Puerto Rico correlate with some structures in Hispaniola and Cuba, and shows how the northern boundary of the Caribbean Plate was shortened by collisions with continental lithosphere of the North American Plate throughout its history. The tectonic evolution of the Greater Antilles shows a history of collisions, in which the latest collision accretes Cuba to the North American Plate, reorganizes the plate boundary, and deforms with transpression Hispaniola and Puerto Rico. The latest collision in Puerto Rico shows the case in which an arc collides obliquely with buoyant crust producing left-lateral transpression and converges obliquely with dense oceanic lithosphere.

Laó-Dávila, Daniel A.



Geological interpretation of combined Seabeam, Gloria and seismic data from Anegada Passage (Virgin Islands, north Caribbean)  

NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

The Anegada Passage (sensu lato) includes several basins and ridges from Southeast of Puerto Rico to the corner of the Virgin Islands Platform. Seabeam (Seacarib I) and Gloria long-range sidescan sonar surveys were carried out in this area. These new data allow us to propose an interpretation of the Anegada Passage. Most of the features described are related to wrench faulting: (a) St Croix and Virgin Islands Basins are pull-apart basins created in a right-lateral strike-slip environment based on their rhomboidal shape and seismic data (e.g. the flower structure). These two pull-aparts are divided into two sub-basins by a curvilinear normal fault in the Virgin Islands Basin and a right-lateral strike-slip fault in the St Croix Basin. (b) Tortola Ridge and a ‘dog's leg’ shaped structure are inferred to be restraining bends between two right-lateral strike-slip faults. (c) We identified two ENE-WSW volcanic lineaments in the eastern area and one volcano lying between Virgin Islands and St Croix Basins. (d) As shown by the seismic activity main wrench motion occurs along the north slope of Virgin Islands Basin and through Anegada Passage. A branching of this main fault transmits the transtensional motion to St Croix Basin. A two-stage story is proposed for the creation of the basins. A first extensional event during Eocene(?)-Oligocene-lower Miocene time created Virgin Islands, St Croix Basins and the tilted blocks of St Croix Ridge. A second transtensional event from Pliocene to Recent gave the present day pattern to this area. However, the displacement along the strike-slip faults is no more than 15 km long. The proposed geodynamic model is based on the separation of the northeastern Caribbean boundary into two blocks. In the West, the indenter of Beata Ridge gives a northeastern motion to Hispaniola Block. In the East, as a result of Hispaniola Block's motion, the Puerto Rico—Virgin Islands Block could escape in an east-northeast direction.

Jany, I.; Scanlon, K. M.; Mauffret, A.



Genetic introgression and hybridization in Antillean freshwater turtles (Trachemys) revealed by coalescent analyses of mitochondrial and cloned nuclear markers.  


Determining whether a conflict between gene trees and species trees represents incomplete lineage sorting (ILS) or hybridization involving native and/or invasive species has implications for reconstructing evolutionary relationships and guiding conservation decisions. Among vertebrates, turtles represent an exceptional case for exploring these issues because of the propensity for even distantly related lineages to hybridize. In this study we investigate a group of freshwater turtles (Trachemys) from a part of its range (the Greater Antilles) where it is purported to have undergone reticulation events from both natural and anthropogenic processes. We sequenced mtDNA for 83 samples, sequenced three nuDNA markers for 45 samples, and cloned 29 polymorphic sequences, to identify species boundaries, hybridization, and intergrade zones for Antillean Trachemys and nearby mainland populations. Initial coalescent analyses of phased nuclear alleles (using (*)BEAST) recovered a Bayesian species tree that strongly conflicted with the mtDNA phylogeny and traditional taxonomy, and appeared to be confounded by hybridization. Therefore, we undertook exploratory phylogenetic analyses of mismatched alleles from the "coestimated" gene trees (Heled and Drummond, 2010) in order to identify potential hybrid origins. The geography, morphology, and sampling context of most samples with potential introgressed alleles suggest hybridization over ILS. We identify contact zones between different species on Jamaica (T. decussata × T. terrapen), on Hispaniola (T. decorata × T. stejnegeri), and in Central America (T. emolli × T. venusta). We are unable to determine whether the distribution of T. decussata on Jamaica is natural or the result of prehistoric introduction by Native Americans. This uncertainty means that the conservation status of the Jamaican T. decussata populations and contact zone with T. terrapen are unresolved. Human-mediated dispersal events were more conclusively implicated for the prehistoric translocation of T. stejnegeri between Puerto Rico and Hispaniola, as well as the more recent genetic pollution of native species by an invasive pet turtle native to the USA (T. scripta elegans). Finally, we test the impact of introgressed alleles using the multispecies coalescent in a Bayesian framework and show that studies that do not phase heterozygote sequences of hybrid individuals may recover the correct species tree, but overall support for clades that include hybrid individuals may be reduced. PMID:23353072

Parham, James F; Papenfuss, Theodore J; Dijk, Peter Paul van; Wilson, Byron S; Marte, Cristian; Schettino, Lourdes Rodriguez; Brian Simison, W



Coevolution between Hispaniolan crossbills and pine: does more time allow for greater phenotypic escalation at lower latitude?  


Crossbills (Aves: Loxia) and several conifers have coevolved in predator-prey arms races over the last 10,000 years. However, the extent to which coevolutionary arms races have contributed to the adaptive radiation of crossbills or to any other adaptive radiation is largely unknown. Here we extend our previous studies of geographically structured coevolution by considering a crossbill-conifer interaction that has persisted for a much longer time period and involves a conifer with more variable annual seed production. We examined geographic variation in the cone and seed traits of two sister species of pines, Pinus occidentalis and P. cubensis, on the islands of Hispaniola and Cuba, respectively. We also compared the Hispaniolan crossbill (Loxia megaplaga) to its sister taxa the North American white-winged crossbill (Loxia leucoptera leucoptera). The Hispaniolan crossbill is endemic to Hispaniola whereas Cuba lacks crossbills. In addition and in contrast to previous studies, the variation in selection experienced by these pines due to crossbills is not confounded by the occurrence of selection by tree squirrels (Tamiasciurus and Sciurus). As predicted if P. occidentalis has evolved defenses in response to selection exerted by crossbills, cones of P. occidentalis have scales that are 53% thicker than those of P. cubensis. Cones of P. occidentalis, but not P. cubensis, also have well-developed spines, a known defense against vertebrate seed predators. Consistent with patterns of divergence seen in crossbills coevolving locally with other conifers, the Hispaniolan crossbill has evolved a bill that is 25% deeper than the white-winged crossbill. Together with phylogenetic analyses, our results suggest that predator-prey coevolution between Hispaniolan crossbills and P. occidentalis over approximately 600,000 years has caused substantial morphological evolution in both the crossbill and pine. This also indicates that cone crop fluctuations do not prevent crossbills and conifers from coevolving. Furthermore, because the traits at the phenotypic interface of the interaction apparently remain the same over at least several hundred thousand years, divergence as a result of coevolution is greater at lower latitude where crossbill-conifer interactions have been less interrupted by Pleistocene events. PMID:17767586

Parchman, Thomas L; Benkman, Craig W; Mezquida, Eduardo T



Conservation and management of the American crocodile  

NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

The American crocodile is a rare and endangered species, the range of which has contracted to disjunct locations such as Hispaniola, Jamaica, Cuba, Panama, and southern Florida. In an attempt to determine what factors might be limiting population growth, an extensive collaborative research program was conducted in 1978 82 in southern Florida. Limiting factors explicitly studied included climate, hurricanes, population dispersion, nesting habitat, fertility, predation, nest chamber environment, juvenile survivorship, artificial mortality, disturbance, and environmental contamination. No single natural factor limits the population, although in concert various factors result in low adult recruitment rates. Such natural limitations explain the natural rarity of this tropical species at the temperate limits of its range. Two artificial sources of mortality are death of adults on roads and the flooding of nests by high groundwater tables. These sources of mortality are potentially controllable by the appropriate management agencies. Active management, by such means as protection of individuals, habitat preservation and enhancement, nest site protection, and captive breeding, is also appropriate for assuring the survival of a rare species. The American crocodile has survived in southern Florida in face of extensive human occupancy of parts of its former nesting habitat, demonstrating the resilience of a threatened species. This case history illustrates the efficacy of conducting research aimed at testing specific management hypotheses, the importance of considering biographical constraints limiting population status in peripheral populations, the need for active management of rare species, and the role of multiple reserves in a conservation and management strategy.

Kushlan, James A.



Genomic and Phenotypic Characterization of Vibrio cholerae Non-O1 Isolates from a US Gulf Coast Cholera Outbreak  

PubMed Central

Between November 2010, and May 2011, eleven cases of cholera, unrelated to a concurrent outbreak on the island of Hispaniola, were recorded, and the causative agent, Vibrio cholerae serogroup O75, was traced to oysters harvested from Apalachicola Bay, Florida. From the 11 diagnosed cases, eight isolates of V. cholerae were isolated and their genomes were sequenced. Genomic analysis demonstrated the presence of a suite of mobile elements previously shown to be involved in the disease process of cholera (ctxAB, VPI-1 and -2, and a VSP-II like variant) and a phylogenomic analysis showed the isolates to be sister taxa to toxigenic V. cholerae V51 serogroup O141, a clinical strain isolated 23 years earlier. Toxigenic V. cholerae O75 has been repeatedly isolated from clinical cases in the southeastern United States and toxigenic V. cholerae O141 isolates have been isolated globally from clinical cases over several decades. Comparative genomics, phenotypic analyses, and a Caenorhabditis elegans model of infection for the isolates were conducted. This analysis coupled with isolation data of V. cholerae O75 and O141 suggests these strains may represent an underappreciated clade of cholera-causing strains responsible for significant disease burden globally. PMID:24699521

Grim, Christopher J.; Onifade, Tiffiani J.; Cinar, Hediye N.; Tall, Ben D.; Taviani, Elisa; Hasan, Nur A.; Abdullah, AbdulShakur H.; Carter, Laurenda; Sahu, Surasri N.; Kothary, Mahendra H.; Chen, Arlene; Baker, Ron; Hutchinson, Richard; Blackmore, Carina; Cebula, Thomas A.; Huq, Anwar; Colwell, Rita R.



Possible determination of the vector and reservoir of leishmaniasis in the Dominican Republic.  


Two species of sand flies were collected by various methods from sites in the Dominican Republic. Lutzomyia cayennensis hispaniolae was the more common of the two. It was found in wooded habitats from sea level to an elevation of 442 m. This species was observed feeding on lizards (Anolis sp.) in the wild. In the laboratory, it fed only on lizards and only under lighted conditions. The other species, Lu. christophei was only found in the vicinity of seven leishmaniasis case sites. It readily fed on or probed rodents and humans. Although no naturally infected sand flies were collected, in the laboratory Lu. christophei was readily capable of transmitting the Dominican Leishmania parasite to uninfected BALB/c mice. We collected 167 specimens of three species of rodents and three Herpestes auropunctatus (mongoose) from the vicinity of two case sites. All four species are non-endemics introduced in post-Columbian times. Although we were unable to isolate parasites from any of these specimens, four of 44 Rattus rattus from one case site were seropositive for antibodies against Leishmania by indirect fluorescent antibody testing. This represents the first report of transmission of the Dominican Leishmania parasite by a sympatric species of sand fly and suggests that commensal rodents may play a role in the epidemiologic cycle. PMID:1558267

Johnson, R N; Young, D G; Butler, J F; Bogaert-Diaz, H



Studies in neotropical paleobotany. XIV. A palynoflora from the middle Eocene Saramaguacan formation of Cuba  

USGS Publications Warehouse

An assemblage of 46 fossil pollen and spore types is described from a core drilled through the middle Eocene Saramaguacan Formation, Camaguey Province, eastern Cuba. Many of the specimens represent unidentified or extinct taxa but several can be identified to family (Palmae, Bombacaceae, Gramineae, Moraceae, Myrtaceae) and some to genus (Pteris, Crudia, Lymingtonia?). The paleo-climate was warm-temperate to subtropical which is consistent with other floras in the region of comparable age and with the global paleotemperature curve. Older plate tectonic models show a variety of locations for proto-Cuba during Late Cretaceous and later times, including along the norther coast of South America. More recent models depict western and central Cuba as two separate parts until the Eocene, and eastern Cuba (joined to northern Hispaniola) docking to central Cuba also in the Eocene. All fragments are part of the North American Plate and none were directly connected with northern South America in late Mesozoic or Cenozoic time. The Saramaguacan flora supports this model because the assemblage is distinctly North American in affinities, with only one type (Retimonocolpites type 1) found elsewhere only in South America.

Graham, A.; Cozadd, D.; Areces-Mallea, A.; Frederiksen, N. O.



Seismic-zonation of Port-au-Prince using pixel- and object-based imaging analysis methods on ASTER GDEM  

USGS Publications Warehouse

We report about a preliminary study to evaluate the use of semi-automated imaging analysis of remotely-sensed DEM and field geophysical measurements to develop a seismic-zonation map of Port-au-Prince, Haiti. For in situ data, Vs30 values are derived from the MASW technique deployed in and around the city. For satellite imagery, we use an ASTER GDEM of Hispaniola. We apply both pixel- and object-based imaging methods on the ASTER GDEM to explore local topography (absolute elevation values) and classify terrain types such as mountains, alluvial fans and basins/near-shore regions. We assign NEHRP seismic site class ranges based on available Vs30 values. A comparison of results from imagery-based methods to results from traditional geologic-based approaches reveals good overall correspondence. We conclude that image analysis of RS data provides reliable first-order site characterization results in the absence of local data and can be useful to refine detailed site maps with sparse local data. ?? 2011 American Society for Photogrammetry and Remote Sensing.

Yong, A.; Hough, S.E.; Cox, B.R.; Rathje, E.M.; Bachhuber, J.; Dulberg, R.; Hulslander, D.; Christiansen, L.; Abrams, M.J.



Seismic zonation of Port-Au-Prince using pixel- and object-based imaging analysis methods on ASTER GDEM  

USGS Publications Warehouse

We report about a preliminary study to evaluate the use of semi-automated imaging analysis of remotely-sensed DEM and field geophysical measurements to develop a seismic-zonation map of Port-au-Prince, Haiti. For in situ data, VS30 values are derived from the MASW technique deployed in and around the city. For satellite imagery, we use an ASTER GDEM of Hispaniola. We apply both pixel- and object-based imaging methods on the ASTER GDEM to explore local topography (absolute elevation values) and classify terrain types such as mountains, alluvial fans and basins/near-shore regions. We assign NEHRP seismic site class ranges based on available VS30 values. A comparison of results from imagery-based methods to results from traditional geologic-based approaches reveals good overall correspondence. We conclude that image analysis of RS data provides reliable first-order site characterization results in the absence of local data and can be useful to refine detailed site maps with sparse local data.

Yong, Alan; Hough, Susan E.; Cox, Brady R.; Rathje, Ellen M.; Bachhuber, Jeff; Dulberg, Ranon; Hulslander, David; Christiansen, Lisa; and Abrams, Michael J.



Migration of Neogene marine environments, southwestern Dominican Republic  

SciTech Connect

The Azua Basin contains a 4000-m-thick regressive Neogene sedimentary sequence that records the effects of neotectonic activity along the northern bounary of the Caribbean plate. Shifts of benthic foraminiferal depth zone boundaries between stratigraphic sections demonstrate a southeastward migration of paleoenvironments in the Miocene and early Pliocene which suggest that the Hispaniola restraining bend was activated near the beginning of the late Miocene. In the morthwestern part of the Azua basin, the boundary between the middle and upper bathyal biofacies is in the uppermost Miocene Globorotalia humerosa Zone; the bathyal-neritic boundary is near the top of the same zone. In contrast, toward the southeastern (i.e., seaward) end of the basin, the middle bathyal/upper bathyal boundary is just above the base of the lower Pliocene Globorotalia margaritae margaritae Subzone, and the bathyal-neritic transition falls within the upper part of the same zone or in the overlying Globorotalia margaritae evoluta Subzone. The diachroneity of biofacies boundaries spans a time interval of ca. 1 m.y. The foraminiferal trends are corroborated by the disposition of time-transgressive lithofacies.

McLaughlin, P.P. Jr. (Exxon Production Research Co., Houston, Texas (USA)); Sen Gupta, B.K. (Louisiana State Univ., Baton Rouge (USA))



Annotated list of the flora of the Bisley Area, luquillo experimental forest, Puerto Rico 1987 to 1992. Forest Service general technical report  

SciTech Connect

The plant species of the Bisley area were surveyed for several years, mostly as a result of studies conducted under the Long-Term Ecological Research Program of the National Science Foundation. A list was prepared that contains a total of 336 plant species in 255 genera and 102 families of bryophytes and vascular plants. Within these species there are 107 tree species, 20 shrub species, 28 dicotyledonous vines, 86 herbs, 52 bryophytes, and 43 ferns. There are 22 introduced and 314 native species (of the later, 30 are endemic to Puerto Rico). Nine families account for 39 percent of all species found in the Bisley area. Forests of the Bisley area have been classified as subtropical wet forests, lower montane rain forests, and single-dominant forests. The Bisley watersheds are covered by a secondary forest of the tabonuco type (Dacryodes excelsa). This forest type is part of the Dacryodes-Sloanea association of Puerto Rico, Hispaniola, and higher elevation islands of the Lesser Antilles.

Chinea, J.D.; Beymer, R.J.; Sastre de Jesus, I.; Scatena, F.N.



A 10,300 14C yr Record of Climate and Vegetation Change from Haiti  

NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

Pleistocene and Holocene vegetation dynamics in the American tropics are inferred largely from pollen in continental lake sediments. Maritime influences may have moderated climate and vegetation changes on Caribbean islands. Stable isotope (? 18O) study of a 7.6-m core from Lake Miragoane, Haiti, provided a high-resolution record of changing evaporation/precipitation (E/P) since ˜10,300 14C yr B.P. The Miragoane pollen record documents climate influences and human impacts on vegetation in Hispaniola. The ? 18O and pollen data near the base of the core indicate cool, dry conditions before ˜10,000 14C yr B.P. Lake Miragoane filled with water in the early Holocene as E/P declined and the freshwater aquifer rose. Despite increasing early Holocene moisture, shrubby, xeric vegetation persisted. Forest expanded ˜7000 14C yr B.P. in response to greater effective moisture and warming. The middle Holocene (˜7000-3200 14C yr B.P.) was characterized by high lake levels and greatest relative abundance of pollen from moist forest taxa. Climatic drying that began ˜3200 14C yr B.P. may have driven some mesophilic animal species to extinction. The pollen record of the last millennium reflects pre-Columbian (Taino) and European deforestation. Long-term, Holocene vegetation trends in southern Haiti are comparable to trends from continental, lowland circum-Caribbean sites, suggesting a common response to regional climate change.

Higuera-Gundy, Antonia; Brenner, Mark; Hodell, David A.; Curtis, Jason H.; Leyden, Barbara W.; Binford, Michael W.



Tectonic events recorded in the sediments and crust of the Caribbean sea floor  

SciTech Connect

A reconnaissance review of reflection-seismic sections from the Caribbean, together with limited information derived from dredged rocks, sediment cores, and drillholes, yields or contributes to first-order conclusions regarding the tectonic history of the water-covered Caribbean. Broadly speaking, tectonic episodes for which there is some evidence are: (1) late Cenozoic convergence and accretion along deformed continental or island margins off Panama, Colombia/Venezuela, and Hispaniola/Puerto Rico; (2) late Cenozoic generation of oceanic crust within the Cayman Trough; (3) late Cenozoic secondary deformation along the Caribbean-North American plate boundary zone, in the form of small pull-apart basins, transcurrent faults, tensional rift basins, and compressional features; (4) late Cenozoic slow disintegration of the western part of the Caribbean plate; (5) Cenozoic rift-basin formation on the upper Nicaraguan rise; (6) early Cenozoic or late Cretaceous opening of the Yucatan Basin; (7) late Cretaceous through early Cenozoic island arc formation; and (8) late Cretaceous and earlier emplacement of flow basalts in the northwestern Venezuelan Basin and possibly beneath large areas of the Caribbean. There is no evidence that except along their active margins, the Venezuelan Basin, Beata Ridge, Colombian Basin, and Nicaraguan rise areas have been sites for large-scale relative movements which created or destroyed plate material since late Cretaceous time - or earlier.

Holcombe, T.L.



Retreat of carbonate platforms: Response to tectonic processes  

SciTech Connect

A SeaMARC 2 and seismic reflection investigation of the deep-water margins of carbonate banks in the southeast Bahamas has documented the retreat of these isolated platforms since mid-Cretaceous time. This retreat is in sharp contrast to prograding carbonate platforms in the passive northwest Bahamas and provides an initial framework within which to view the response of carbonate platforms to tectonic processes. Processes of retreat include large-scale (50-60 km) step-back to platform margins during the mid-Cretaceous; tectonic subsidence and downfaulting during the late Tertiary; and large-scale collapse of platform margins, which may be an active process. Step-back during the mid-Cretaceous correlates with a global tectonic pulse of ocean-crust formation and relative sea-level rise; downfaulting may be a response to either late Tertiary lithospheric bending during subduction and/or block rotation along the North American-Caribbean plate boundary; and collapse may be related to earthquake shocks generated by active plate-tectonic collision between the southwest Bahamas and Hispaniola.

Mullins, H.T.; Andersen, B.; Gaylord, M.; Petruccione, J.L.; Wellner, R.W. (Syracuse Univ., NY (United States)); Dolan, J. (California Inst. of Tech., Pasadena (United States)); Breen, N. (Stanford Univ., CA (United States)); Melillo, A.J.; Jurgens, A.D. (Chevron U.S.A., New Orleans, LA (United States))



Evolutionary stasis and lability in thermal physiology in a group of tropical lizards.  


Understanding how quickly physiological traits evolve is a topic of great interest, particularly in the context of how organisms can adapt in response to climate warming. Adjustment to novel thermal habitats may occur either through behavioural adjustments, physiological adaptation or both. Here, we test whether rates of evolution differ among physiological traits in the cybotoids, a clade of tropical Anolis lizards distributed in markedly different thermal environments on the Caribbean island of Hispaniola. We find that cold tolerance evolves considerably faster than heat tolerance, a difference that results because behavioural thermoregulation more effectively shields these organisms from selection on upper than lower temperature tolerances. Specifically, because lizards in very different environments behaviourally thermoregulate during the day to similar body temperatures, divergent selection on body temperature and heat tolerance is precluded, whereas night-time temperatures can only be partially buffered by behaviour, thereby exposing organisms to selection on cold tolerance. We discuss how exposure to selection on physiology influences divergence among tropical organisms and its implications for adaptive evolutionary response to climate warming. PMID:24430845

Muñoz, Martha M; Stimola, Maureen A; Algar, Adam C; Conover, Asa; Rodriguez, Anthony J; Landestoy, Miguel A; Bakken, George S; Losos, Jonathan B



Effects of experimental egg composition on rejection by Village Weavers (Ploceus cucullatus)  

USGS Publications Warehouse

We experimentally parasitized nests of the Village Weaver (Ploceus cucullatus) in Hispaniola using real and artificial eggs made from wood and modeling clay. Artificial eggs were similar in size and shape to real weaver eggs and were coated with acrylic paint and glazed. Real eggs were actual weaver eggs taken from Village Weaver nests. Experimental parasitic eggs (1) mimicked natural weaver eggs, (2) differed in color only, (3) differed in spotting only, or (4) mimicked Shiny Cowbird (Molothrus bonariensis) egg color and spotting pattern. Parasitized nests were checked after 2-6 days. Real eggs were ejected from weaver nests with increasing frequency as they became less similar to the eggs in the nest with cowbirds eggs having the highest rejection (81%). However, for artificial egg types there were no significant within-composition differences in patterns of rejection. Clay eggs were usually ejected from the nests, whereas nests containing wood eggs often ended empty, or with only the artificial egg remaining in the nest. These patterns may reflect the differential ability of weavers to recognize and remove foreign eggs of different compositions from their nests. Researchers undertaking egg-rejection experiments should use real eggs either in addition or in place of artificial eggs to assess the cost of rejection and the coevolutionary relationships between parasite and host.

Prather, J.W.; Cruz, A.; Weaver, P.F.; Wiley, J.W.



Antillipeltis, a new genus of Antillean Trogossitidae (Coleoptera: Cleroidea) with a key to the Cleroidea.  


Antillipeltis gen. nov. is described based on the following six new extant species and two new fossil species from Hispaniola and Puerto Rico: A. alleni sp. nov. (Dominican Republic, Miocene), A. darlingtoni sp. nov. (Haiti), A. iviei sp. nov. (Dominican Republic, Miocene), A. maculata sp. nov. (Dominican Republic), A. minuta sp. nov. (Dominican Republic), A. nitida sp. nov. (Puerto Rico), A. portoricensis sp. nov. (Puerto Rico), and A. pubescens sp. nov. (Dominican Republic). The genus is placed in Cleroidea, as currently delimited, based on the presence of a distinctive type of aedeagus occurring primarily in this superfamily, plus a combination of features excluding it from other cucujiform superfamilies. Within Cleroidea, the genus is tenatively placed in the family Trogossitidae and subfamily Lophocaterinae, but it differs from all other Trogossitidae in the presence of ventral membranous lobes with adhesive setae on tarsomeres 1-4 and in a combination of 9-segmented antennae, weak 3-segmented antennal club consisting of slightly elongate antenomeres, lack of postcoxal processes on the pronotal hypomera, and unique leg modifications. A key is provided for major groups of Cleroidea and all described genera of Peltinae and Lophocaterinae, with the exception of Rentoniini, based in part on the literature and in part on dissections of adult males. Antillipeltis is one of three endemic West Indian genera of Coleoptera that is both extant and known from Dominican amber. PMID:24870333

Lawrence, John F; Leschen, Richard A B; Slipi?ski, Adam



Rethinking Antillothrix: the mandible and its implications.  


A mandible of the Hispaniolan primate Antillothrix bernensis, virtually complete and providing the only definitive evidence of the species' lower dentition, has been discovered in a submerged Dominican Republic cave. The new specimen enables a more certain assessment of the species' phylogenetic position than previously possible. It belongs to the same individual as the nearly complete young adult cranium and postrcranial elements found earlier at the same site. Of the extinct Caribbean platyrrhines, the jaw compares well with partial mandibles representing Xenothrix mcgregori, from Jamaica. Among living platyrrhines, it closely resembles Callicebus and Aotus, as documented in a biometric analysis employing three-dimensional geometric morphometrics of Callicebus, Aotus, Pithecia, Chiropotes, Cacajao, Cebus, and Saimiri. The jaw falls within the morphological variability of Callicebus and Aotus in this three-dimensional analysis, is otherwise most similar to Pithecia, and is distinct from cebines. Lower molars resemble the Haitian primate, Insulacebus, a genus known by a full dentition and gnathic fragments with a pattern of derived features also present in Xenothrix. Considering the available craniodental and postcranial evidence, we conclude that Antillothrix is not properly classified as cebid but rather is best grouped with Pitheciidae, an idea long central to discussions of the phylogenetic affinities of the Greater Antillean primates. Since Antillothrix and Insulacebus are more primitive anatomically than the highly modified Xenothrix, it is tempting to surmise that the origins of the latter involved a vicariance or dispersal event via Hispaniola isolating it on Jamaica. PMID:23526607

Rosenberger, Alfred L; Klukkert, Zachary S; Cooke, Siobhán B; Rímoli, Renato



Rio Soliette (haiti): AN International Initiative for Flood-Hazard Assessment and Mitigation  

NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

Natural catastrophic events are one of most critical aspects for health and economy all around the world. However, the impact in a poor region can impact more dramatically than in others countries. Isla Hispaniola (Haiti and the Dominican Republic), one of the poorest regions of the planet, has repeatedly been hit by catastrophic natural disasters that caused incalculable human and economic losses. After the catastrophic flood event occurred in the basin of River Soliette on May 24th, 2004, the General Direction for Development and Cooperation of the Italian Department of Foreign Affairs funded an international cooperation initiative (ICI) coordinated by the University of Bologna, that involved Haitian and Dominican institutions.Main purpose of the ICI was hydrological and hydraulic analysis of the May 2004 flood event aimed at formulating a suitable and affordable flood risk mitigation plan, consisting of structural and non-structural measures. In this contest, a topographic survey was necessary to realize the hydrological model and to improve the knowledge in some areas candidates to be site for mitigation measures.To overcome the difficulties arising from the narrowness of funds, surveyors and limited time available for the survey, only GPS technique have been used, both for framing aspects (using PPP approach), and for geometrical survey of the river by means of river cross-sections and detailed surveys in two areas (RTK technique). This allowed us to reconstruct both the river geometry and the DTM's of two expansion areas (useful for design hydraulic solutions for mitigate flood-hazard risk).

Gandolfi, S.; Castellarin, A.; Barbarella, M.; Brath, A.; Domeneghetti, A.; Brandimarte, L.; Di Baldassarre, G.





The U.S. Department's background notes on Haiti briefly describe her geography, people, history, government, economy and foreign relations. Haiti comprises the western third of the Caribbean island Hispaniola, situated east of Cuba. There are 6 million people, growing at 1.9% annually, of African origin. Infant mortality is 124/1000; life expectancy 54 years. The country is undeveloped: 80% live in rural areas; per capita income is $379; literacy is estimated at 23%; most speak Creole, although Haiti is the only officially French speaking nation in the Western hemisphere. The land is hot and dry, largely becoming deforested and eroded. Haiti became independent in 1804 after a slave rebellion. Since then the government has been a succession of dictatorships, leading to constant political and economic disorder. The current transition government rules by decree. The economy is largely based on small subsistence farms. Coffee, cocoa, mangoes, essential oils and locally assembled manufactured goods are exported. Haiti benefits from foreign aid from several institutions and governments, including an active USAID program that fosters soil conservation, education and business. PMID:12177924



Genomic and phenotypic characterization of Vibrio cholerae non-O1 isolates from a US Gulf Coast cholera outbreak.  


Between November 2010, and May 2011, eleven cases of cholera, unrelated to a concurrent outbreak on the island of Hispaniola, were recorded, and the causative agent, Vibrio cholerae serogroup O75, was traced to oysters harvested from Apalachicola Bay, Florida. From the 11 diagnosed cases, eight isolates of V. cholerae were isolated and their genomes were sequenced. Genomic analysis demonstrated the presence of a suite of mobile elements previously shown to be involved in the disease process of cholera (ctxAB, VPI-1 and -2, and a VSP-II like variant) and a phylogenomic analysis showed the isolates to be sister taxa to toxigenic V. cholerae V51 serogroup O141, a clinical strain isolated 23 years earlier. Toxigenic V. cholerae O75 has been repeatedly isolated from clinical cases in the southeastern United States and toxigenic V. cholerae O141 isolates have been isolated globally from clinical cases over several decades. Comparative genomics, phenotypic analyses, and a Caenorhabditis elegans model of infection for the isolates were conducted. This analysis coupled with isolation data of V. cholerae O75 and O141 suggests these strains may represent an underappreciated clade of cholera-causing strains responsible for significant disease burden globally. PMID:24699521

Haley, Bradd J; Choi, Seon Young; Grim, Christopher J; Onifade, Tiffiani J; Cinar, Hediye N; Tall, Ben D; Taviani, Elisa; Hasan, Nur A; Abdullah, Abdulshakur H; Carter, Laurenda; Sahu, Surasri N; Kothary, Mahendra H; Chen, Arlene; Baker, Ron; Hutchinson, Richard; Blackmore, Carina; Cebula, Thomas A; Huq, Anwar; Colwell, Rita R



Earthquake Shakes ``Big Bend'' Region of North America-Caribbean Boundary Zone  

NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

At 12:45 pm on 22 September, a M6.5 earthquake severely shook the northern Dominican Republic on the island of Hispaniola. The earthquake caused extensive damage to buildings in the major cities of Puerto Plata and Santiago, along with landslides in outlying areas. The main shock was followed by a large aftershock of M5.1 1 hr and 45 min later. Unfortunately, one person died due to collapse of a building during the main shock, two elderly people died of heart attacks, and one person jumped out of a building and later died of injuries. Fortunately, two partially collapsed school buildings and several office buildings in Puerto Plata that were severely damaged were unoccupied at the time of the early morning main shock. Aftershocks ranging up to nearly M5 continued for over a month, alarming local inhabitants. The M6.5 earthquake is the strongest shock to affect the northern Dominican Republic since a series of thrust events ranging from M6.1-8.1 occurred offshore and northeast of the Dominican Republic between 1943 and 1953 [Dolan and Wald, 1998]. This article summarizes the tectonic setting of the recent earthquake, its focal mechanism and inferred fault plane, damage, and ongoing research.

Mann, Paul; Calais, Eric; Huerfano, Victor



Reconstructing the Population Genetic History of the Caribbean  

PubMed Central

The Caribbean basin is home to some of the most complex interactions in recent history among previously diverged human populations. Here, we investigate the population genetic history of this region by characterizing patterns of genome-wide variation among 330 individuals from three of the Greater Antilles (Cuba, Puerto Rico, Hispaniola), two mainland (Honduras, Colombia), and three Native South American (Yukpa, Bari, and Warao) populations. We combine these data with a unique database of genomic variation in over 3,000 individuals from diverse European, African, and Native American populations. We use local ancestry inference and tract length distributions to test different demographic scenarios for the pre- and post-colonial history of the region. We develop a novel ancestry-specific PCA (ASPCA) method to reconstruct the sub-continental origin of Native American, European, and African haplotypes from admixed genomes. We find that the most likely source of the indigenous ancestry in Caribbean islanders is a Native South American component shared among inland Amazonian tribes, Central America, and the Yucatan peninsula, suggesting extensive gene flow across the Caribbean in pre-Columbian times. We find evidence of two pulses of African migration. The first pulse—which today is reflected by shorter, older ancestry tracts—consists of a genetic component more similar to coastal West African regions involved in early stages of the trans-Atlantic slave trade. The second pulse—reflected by longer, younger tracts—is more similar to present-day West-Central African populations, supporting historical records of later transatlantic deportation. Surprisingly, we also identify a Latino-specific European component that has significantly diverged from its parental Iberian source populations, presumably as a result of small European founder population size. We demonstrate that the ancestral components in admixed genomes can be traced back to distinct sub-continental source populations with far greater resolution than previously thought, even when limited pre-Columbian Caribbean haplotypes have survived. PMID:24244192

Moreno-Estrada, Andres; Gravel, Simon; Zakharia, Fouad; McCauley, Jacob L.; Byrnes, Jake K.; Gignoux, Christopher R.; Ortiz-Tello, Patricia A.; Martinez, Ricardo J.; Hedges, Dale J.; Morris, Richard W.; Eng, Celeste; Sandoval, Karla; Acevedo-Acevedo, Suehelay; Norman, Paul J.; Layrisse, Zulay; Parham, Peter; Martinez-Cruzado, Juan Carlos; Burchard, Esteban Gonzalez; Cuccaro, Michael L.; Martin, Eden R.; Bustamante, Carlos D.



Seroprevalence of poliovirus antibodies among children in a Dominican community--Puerto Rico, 2002.  


Although the Region of the Americas was certified as polio-free in 1994, an outbreak of paralytic poliomyelitis associated with circulating vaccine-derived poliovirus (cVDPV) occurred during July 2000-July 2001 on the Caribbean island of Hispaniola. A total of 21 cases of paralytic polio associated with type 1 oral poliovirus vaccine (OPV) strain were reported in Haiti and the Dominican Republic (DR). Outbreaks from cVDPV occur among children in communities with low immunity levels to polioviruses and the absence of circulation of wild poliovirus (WPV). The U.S. territory of Puerto Rico (PR), located approximately 72 miles east of DR, has not had a case of paralytic polio since 1974. However, because of its proximity to DR and concerns that visitors and immigrants from DR (who tend to live in a separate community in PR) might not be fully vaccinated against polioviruses, the PR Department of Health (PRDH) and CDC assessed the seroprevalence of poliovirus antibodies among children aged 7-60 months in a predominantly DR community of PR. This report describes the results of that assessment, which indicated high levels of seropositivity for all three poliovirus serotypes. If vaccination rates remain high, the risk for a polio outbreak in this community is low. However, until all threats of poliovirus are eliminated globally, high rates of vaccination among preschool children must be ensured to prevent outbreaks of paralytic polio from any source (e.g., imported WPV, laboratory strains, or cVDPV) in the United States and its territories. PMID:15959453



Site-specific Earthquake-generate Tsunami Hazard Assessment in U.S. Atlantic Coast  

NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

The Indian Ocean tsunami of 24 December 2004 has changed the perception of a tsunami as an infrequent low-risk hazard. The devoid of subduction or convergent zones in the Atlantic Ocean makes coastal communities less aware of the potential tsunami hazard in the East Coast of US. The existing continental shelf offshore has believed to act as additional buffer that may significantly attenuate the tsunami impact to the U.S. Atlantic coast. However, the uncertainties are still substantial and need to be timely addressed: 1. the largest tsunami ever recorded in Atlantic, 1755 Lisbon, was understudied; 2. the Hispaniola-Puerto Rico-Lesser Antilles subduction zone - a Sumatra-Andaman type of trench - in the northeast of Caribbean is capable of generating catastrophic tsunami; 3. the South Sandwich Trench was mostly overlooked; and 4. most of previous studies tackling these issues did not surpass the linear tsunami propagation in the deep ocean for nonlinear tsunami inundation modeling in the coastal area. Using the established NOAA high-resolution tsunami inundation model, the present study explores above uncertainties and provides comprehensive modeling assessment of the potential earthquake-generated tsunami hazard for selected coastal communities in U.S. Atlantic coasts, with highlight on over-shelf tsunami wave dynamics. This study is an extension of the USGS evaluation of earthquake-tsunami impact in Atlantic (ten Brink et al., 2007; Barkan et al., 2009) in the light of the Nuclear Regulation Commission (NRC) efforts on tsunami risk assessment for existing and potential nuclear power plants in U. S. East Coast.

Wei, Y.; Titov, V. V.; Moore, C. W.; Gica, E.; Arcas, D.; Spillane, M. C.; Zhou, H.



Near Real-time Operational Use of eMODIS Expedited NDVI for Monitoring Applications and Famine Early Warning  

NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

The Famine Early Warning Systems Network (FEWS NET) has requirements for near real-time monitoring of vegetation conditions for food security applications. Accurate and timely assessments of crop conditions are an important element of food security decision making. FEWS NET scientists at the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) Earth Resources Observation and Science (EROS) Center are utilizing a new Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI) dataset for operational monitoring of crop and pasture conditions in parts of the world where food availability is highly dependent on subsistence agriculture and animal husbandry. The expedited MODIS, or eMODIS, production system processes NDVI data using MODIS surface reflectance provided by the Land Atmosphere Near-real-time Capability for EOS (LANCE). Benefits of this production system include customized compositing schedules, near real-time data availability, and minimized re-sampling. FEWS NET has implemented a 10-day compositing scheme every five days to accommodate the need for timely information on vegetation conditions. The data are currently being processed at 250-meter spatial resolution for Central America, Hispaniola, and Africa. Data are further enhanced by the application of a temporal smoothing filter which helps remove contamination due to clouds and other atmospheric effects. The results of this near real-time monitoring capability have been the timely provision of NDVI and NDVI anomaly maps for each of the FEWS NET monitoring regions and the availability of a consistently processed dataset to aid crop assessment missions and to facilitate customized analyses of crop production, drought, and agro-pastoral conditions.

Rowland, J.; Budde, M. E.



Cenozoic tectonic and sedimentary development of the North American-Caribbean transform boundary  

SciTech Connect

The North American-Caribbean plate boundary consists of strike-slip deformation extending 3,200 km from the Middle American volcanic arc in western Guatemala to the northern Lesser Antilles. The authors have reconstructed the complex sedimentary and tectonic evolution of this zone over the past 65 m.y. by integration of onshore geologic data and offshore geophysical data. Onshore geologic data consists mainly of detailed structural maps and biostratigraphic studies from uplifted sedimentary basins in Hispaniola and Jamaica. Offshore data consists of single and multichannel seismic profiles and side-scan sonar maps. Both onshore and offshore data have been synthesized into a set of computer-based, paleogeographic maps for the following Cenozoic periods: late Paleocene, middle Eocene, late Oligocene, early Miocene, late Miocene, Pliocene, and Holocene. These data allow them to generalize the tectonic evolution of the boundary into three stages. Stage 1: Paleocene to early Eocene rifting and bimodal volcanism associated with formation of the Cayman Trough pullapart basin. Nonmarine to shallow marine sedimentation was controlled by northwest-northeast-striking normal faults formed at a high angle to the direction of plate motion. Stage 2: middle Eocene to early Miocene strike-slip faulting across a broad, California Borderlands-type margin. Shallow marine to marine sedimentation was controlled by strike-slip faults parallel or at a low angle to the direction of plate motion. Stage 3: middle Miocene to present strike-slip faulting along a single major fault. Deep-marine sedimentation was controlled by a major strike-slip fault scarp formed approximately parallel to the direction of plate motion over most of the length of the boundary. Eustatic sea level effects are recognizable in all three stages.

Mann, P.; Debalko, D.; Grote, D.; Tyburski, S. (Univ. of Texas, Austin (USA))



Bivergent thrust wedges surrounding oceanic island arcs: Insight from observations and sandbox models of the northeastern caribbean plate  

USGS Publications Warehouse

At several localities around the world, thrust belts have developed on both sides of oceanic island arcs (e.g., Java-Timor, Panama, Vanuatu, and the northeastern Caribbean). In these localities, the overall vergence of the backarc thrust belt is opposite to that of the forearc thrust belt. For example, in the northeastern Caribbean, a north-verging accretionary prism lies to the north of the Eastern Greater Antilles arc (Hispaniola and Puerto Rico), whereas a south-verging thrust belt called the Muertos thrust belt lies to the south. Researchers have attributed such bivergent geometry to several processes, including: reversal of subduction polarity; subduction-driven mantle flow; stress transmission across the arc; gravitational spreading of the arc; and magmatic inflation within the arc. New observations of deformational features in the Muertos thrust belt and of fault geometries produced in sandbox kinematic models, along with examination of published studies of island arcs, lead to the conclusion that the bivergence of thrusting in island arcs can develop without reversal of subduction polarity, without subarc mantle flow, and without magmatic inflation. We suggest that the Eastern Greater Antilles arc and comparable arcs are simply crustalscale bivergent (or "doubly vergent") thrust wedges formed during unidirectional subduction. Sandbox kinematic modeling suggests, in addition, that a broad retrowedge containing an imbricate fan of thrusts develops only where the arc behaves relatively rigidly. In such cases, the arc acts as a backstop that transmits compressive stress into the backarc region. Further, modeling shows that when arcs behave as rigid blocks, the strike-slip component of oblique convergence is accommodated entirely within the prowedge and the arc-the retrowedge hosts only dip-slip faulting ("frontal thrusting"). The existence of large retrowedges and the distribution of faulting in an island arc may, therefore, be evidence that the arc is relatively rigid. The rigidity of an island arc may arise from its mafi c composition and has implications for seismic-hazard analysis. ?? 2009 Geological Society of America.

ten, Brink, U. S.; Marshak, S.; Granja, Bruna, J. -L.



Faith based aviation: An ethnographic study of missionary flights international  

NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

The development of faith-based missionary aviation is a post-World War II phenomenon. The war effort demonstrated the value, utility, and global reach of aviation to remote, underdeveloped areas of the world. With the beginnings of a worldwide infrastructure for aviation, Christian aviators realized aviation could increase the range and effectiveness of their efforts to reach the world for Christ (Mellis, 2006). Although individual organizations provide statistical information and data about flight operations there is a lack of external evidence and relevant research literature confirming the scope and value of these faith based aviation organizations and operations. A qualitative, ethnographic study was conducted to document the activities of one faith-based aviation organization to gain an understanding of this little known aspect of civilian aviation. The study was conducted with Missionary Flights International (MFI) of Fort Pierce, FL which has been involved in faith-based, missionary aviation since its inception in 1964. As an aviation organization "MFI strives to offer affiliated missions the kind of efficient service and professionalism expected of an airline operation" (Missionary Flights International, 2013, p.1). MFI is a lifeline for missionaries to Haiti and the Dominican Republic, fulfilling their motto of "Standing in the Gap". MFI provides twice a week service to the island of Hispaniola and the Republic of Haiti. In this in-depth study insight and understanding was gained into the purpose of MFI, their daily routines and operations, and the challenges they face in maintaining their flight services to Haiti. This study provided documentation of the value and utility of such aviation efforts and of the individuals involved in this endeavor.

Cooper, Joseph H.


Jurassic hydrocarbon exploration of southern Florida  

SciTech Connect

South Florida Jurassic exploration has been overlooked as a viable exploration target due to lack of data and plate-tectonics application. In Florida, {open_quotes}basement{close_quotes} is defined as crystalline, igneous, metamorphic, and unmetamorphosed sediments of Paleozoic age. Age-dating of zircons has proven that the Florida lower Paleozoic terrane is not akin to that of North America but is part of the West African Guinean shield. Previous published reconstructions of late Paleozoic fits of crustal plates and continents have failed to account for the differences in peninsula Florida basement and the geologic and tectonic continuities of peninsula Florida, Yucatan, Cuba, Hispaniola, and Bahamas. Pre-Atlantic reconstruction of the Gulf of Mexico in this study proposes that there was a Florida connection to Yucatan-Cuba-Africa during the Triassic. This reconstruction also shows that the Jurassic sediments that are well known in the northern Gulf Coast should have been deposited in similar depositional environments in southern Florida. Deep drilling on the Florida peninsula has confirmed this hypothesis. By using plate tectonic reconstruction based on the rising of the North Atlantic Ocean and evidence from petrology of basement samples from deep wells together with petrographic analyses of Jurassic sediments, a Smackover-equivalent exploration play can be developed. Petrographic and petrophysical analysis of these wells that have encountered Jurassic marine shales, anhydrite, dolomite, carbonate, and elastic sediments has determined that these sediments are from shallow-water subtidal, tidal, intertidal, and supratidal environments. Excellent gas shows, oil stain in the pores and high TOC values in the marine shales, indicate that large accumulations of hydrocarbon are present.

Mitchell-Tapping, H.J. [Retog, Inc., DeSoto, TX (United States)



Seismic Catalogue and Seismic Network in Haiti  

NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

The destructive earthquake occurred on January 10, 2010 in Haiti, highlighted the lack of preparedness of the country to address seismic phenomena. At the moment of the earthquake, there was no seismic network operating in the country, and only a partial control of the past seismicity was possible, due to the absence of a national catalogue. After the 2010 earthquake, some advances began towards the installation of a national network and the elaboration of a seismic catalogue providing the necessary input for seismic Hazard Studies. This paper presents the state of the works carried out covering both aspects. First, a seismic catalogue has been built, compiling data of historical and instrumental events occurred in the Hispaniola Island and surroundings, in the frame of the SISMO-HAITI project, supported by the Technical University of Madrid (UPM) and Developed in cooperation with the Observatoire National de l'Environnement et de la Vulnérabilité of Haiti (ONEV). Data from different agencies all over the world were gathered, being relevant the role of the Dominican Republic and Puerto Rico seismological services which provides local data of their national networks. Almost 30000 events recorded in the area from 1551 till 2011 were compiled in a first catalogue, among them 7700 events with Mw ranges between 4.0 and 8.3. Since different magnitude scale were given by the different agencies (Ms, mb, MD, ML), this first catalogue was affected by important heterogeneity in the size parameter. Then it was homogenized to moment magnitude Mw using the empirical equations developed by Bonzoni et al (2011) for the eastern Caribbean. At present, this is the most exhaustive catalogue of the country, although it is difficult to assess its degree of completeness. Regarding the seismic network, 3 stations were installed just after the 2010 earthquake by the Canadian Government. The data were sent by telemetry thought the Canadian System CARINA. In 2012, the Spanish IGN together with ONEV and BME, installed 4 seismic stations with financial support from the Inter-American Development Bank and the Haitian Government. The 4 stations include strong motion and broad-band sensors, complementing the 8 sensors initially installed. The stations communicate via SATMEX5 with the Canadian HUB, which sends the data back to Haiti with minimum delay. In the immediate future, data transfer will be improved with the installation of a main antenna for data reception and the Seismic Warning Center of Port-au-Prince. A bidirectional satellite communication is considered of fundamental importance for robust real-time data transmission that is not affected in the case of a catastrophic event.

Belizaire, D.; Benito, B.; Carreño, E.; Meneses, C.; Huerfano, V.; Polanco, E.; McCormack, D.



Ophiolite and Tectonic Development of the East Pacific Margin  

NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

Well-preserved ophiolites represent oceanic crust and mantle formed at a spreading center and emplaced by collision of a mantle-rooted thrust fault (subduction zone) with a continental margin or island arc. Ophiolite nappes thus represent remnants of lithospheric plates; their basal thrusts (fossil subduction zones) intrinscally cannot be balanced; their displacements are unknown but very large. Many environments of formation are possible for ophiolites: mid-ocean ridge, back-arc, forearc, or intra-arc spreading vrnyrtd, but geochemistry alone is inadequate to differentiate between the possibilities; geologic field evidence is needed, as well. Mesozoic ophiolites in western North America are associated either with the Stikine-Intermontane superterrane (e.g. Sierra Nevada, Klamath Mountains, California. Guerrero terrane, Mexico?), or lie west of it (e.g. Great Valley/Coast Range ophiolite and correlatives to north and south.). The "Great Arc" of the Caribbean (Burke, 1988), including ophiolitic rocks in Cuba, Hispaniola, Puerto Rico, Venezuela, and Colombia, may also correlate with the Great Valley/Coast Range ophiolite and/or with ophiolites in the Sierra Nevada. The Wrangellia/Insular superterrane may have extended to the south and at times may have included parts of the Chortis-Choco blocks of Central America, as well as the Cordillera Occidental of Colombia and Ecuador). These relations suggest the hypothesis that in mid-late Mesozoic time, a separate intra-oceanic plate similar to the present Philippine plate, herein informally called "Americordilleria" was separated by active island arc complexes from the American andFarallon/Kula plates to the east and west, respectively. Basement rocks of the Colombian, Venezuelan, and Yucatan basins, as well as the Great Valley/Coast Range ophiolite, may represent remnants of "Americordilleria". Convergence and collision of "Americordilleria" and its island arc margins with the American continents were major factors in western American and Caribbean orogenic development. Direct contact between the Kula/Farallon plates and North America may not have occurred until late Cretaceous time.

Moores, E. M.



Modeling of tsunamis and hurricanes as causes of the catastrophic overwash of Anegada, British Virgin Islands, between 1650 and 1800  

NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

The giant 2004 Aceh-Andaman earthquake and its Indian Ocean tsunami have spurred reassessment of earthquake and tsunami potential at subduction zones worldwide. Some of these zones resemble the source area of the 2004 earthquake in having a highly oblique convergence and little or no written record of great (M 8.0 or larger) thrust earthquakes. Some scientists have questioned whether subduction rate and subducting-plate age control the maximum earthquake size (Stein and Okal, 2007), even stating that all subduction zones long enough to make a giant (M 9) earthquake should be assumed capable of doing so (McCaffrey, 2008). In the present study, we seek to explain geological evidence for overwash, sometime between 1650 and 1800, at Anegada, northeast of Puerto Rico and 120 km south of the Puerto Rico Trench. Anegada offers three kinds of well-preserved evidence for a one-time overwash from the island’s north side during the decades between 1650 and 1800: dozens of elongate breaches cutting through sandy beach ridges of Anegada's north shore, which is protected from storm waves by a fringing reef; a sheet of sand and shell traced as much as 1.5 km southward inland from that shore; and fields of scattered boulders and cobbles moved southward and derived, in one case, from limestone outcrops 1 km south of the shore. Here we use tsunami modeling, tied to geological and written observations, to explore the earthquake and tsunami potential of the northern Antilles subduction zone. The plate convergence here is highly oblique, and there is no compelling written evidence, nor any instrumental evidence, for the occurrence of a great earthquake along the Puerto Rico Trench east of Hispaniola. We present tsunami simulations for four hypothetical sources, three along the Puerto Rico Trench and one in the Azores-Gibraltar convergence zone. We compare the model output with inundation inferred from the overwash evidence and with tsunamis, or their absence, recorded in writing in the northeast Caribbean. Alternatively, we use models of storm surge and storm waves to ask whether this overwash could have resulted from a hurricane of category 4 or 5. The models show that the fringing reef and the shallows behind it reduce storm-wave heights as much as twenty-fold and storm-wave energy by factors as large as 400. Based on these findings, along with inferences made directly from the geology itself, we conclude that the overwash at Anegada most likely resulted from the 1755 Lisbon earthquake or from a previously unreported earthquake on the outer rise along the Puerto Rico Trench.

Wei, Y.; ten Brink, U. S.; Atwater, B. F.



Potential of high resolution satellite imagery, remote weather data and 1D hydraulic modeling to evaluate flood areas in Gonaives, Haiti  

NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

We present a feasibility study to explore potential of high-resolution imagery, coupled with hydraulic flood modeling to predict flooding risks, applied to the case study of Gonaives basins (585 km²), Haiti. We propose a methodology working at different scales, providing accurate results and a faster intervention during extreme flood events. The 'Hispaniola' island, in the Caribbean tropical zone, is often affected by extreme floods events. Floods are caused by tropical springs and hurricanes, and may lead to several damages, including cholera epidemics, as recently occurred, in the wake of the earthquake upon January 12th 2010 (magnitude 7.0). Floods studies based upon hydrological and hydraulic modeling are hampered by almost complete lack of ground data. Thenceforth, and given the noticeable cost involved in the organization of field measurement campaigns, the need for exploitation of remote sensing images data. HEC-RAS 1D modeling is carried out under different scenarios of available Digital Elevation Models. The DEMs are generated using optical remote sensing satellite (WorldView-1) and SRTM, combined with information from an open source database (Open Street Map). We study two recent flood episodes, where flood maps from remote sensing were available. Flood extent and land use have been assessed by way of data from SPOT-5 satellite, after hurricane Jeanne in 2004 and hurricane Hanna in 2008. A semi-distributed, DEM based hydrological model is used to simulate flood flows during the hurricanes. Precipitation input is taken from daily rainfall data derived from TRMM satellite, plus proper downscaling. The hydraulic model is calibrated using floodplain friction as tuning parameters against the observed flooded area. We compare different scenarios of flood simulation, and the predictive power of model calibration. The method provide acceptable results in depicting flooded areas, especially considering the tremendous lack of ground data, and show the potential of remote sensing information in prediction of flood events in this area, for the purpose of risk assessment and land use planning, and possibly for flood forecast during extreme events.

Bozza, Andrea; Durand, Arnaud; Allenbach, Bernard; Confortola, Gabriele; Bocchiola, Daniele



Morphotectonics of the central Muertos thrust belt and Muertos Trough (northeastern Caribbean)  

USGS Publications Warehouse

Multibeam bathymetry data acquired during the 2005 Spanish R/V Hesp??rides cruise and reprocessed multichannel seismic profiles provide the basis for the analysis of the morphology and deformation in the central Muertos Trough and Muertos thrust belt. The Muertos Trough is an elongated basin developed where the Venezuelan Basin crust is thrusted under the Muertos fold-and-thrust belt. Structural variations along the Muertos Trough are suggested to be a consequence of the overburden of the asymmetrical thrust belt and by the variable nature of the Venezuelan Basin crust along the margin. The insular slope can be divided into three east-west trending slope provinces with high lateral variability which correspond to different accretion stages: 1) The lower slope is composed of an active sequence of imbricate thrust slices and closed fold axes, which form short and narrow accretionary ridges and elongated slope basins; 2) The middle slope shows a less active imbricate structure resulting in lower superficial deformation and bigger slope basins; 3) The upper slope comprises the talus region and extended terraces burying an island arc basement and an inactive imbricate structure. The talus region is characterized by a dense drainage network that transports turbidite flows from the islands and their surrounding carbonate platform areas to the slope basins and sometimes to the trough. In the survey area the accommodation of the ongoing east-west differential motion between the Hispaniola and the Puerto Rico-Virgin Islands blocks takes place by means of diffuse deformation. The asymmetrical development of the thrust belt is not related to the geological conditions in the foreland, but rather may be caused by variations in the geometry and movement of the backstop. The map-view curves of the thrust belt and the symmetry of the recesses suggest a main north-south convergence along the Muertos margin. The western end of the Investigator Fault Zone comprises a broad band of active normal faults which result in high instability of the upper insular slope. ?? 2009 Elsevier B.V.

Granja, Bruna, J. L.; ten, Brink, U. S.; Carbo-Gorosabel, A.; Munoz-Martin, A.; Gomez, Ballesteros, M.



Searching for the Blind fault: Haiti Subsurface Imaging Project  

NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

The impact of the 12 January 2010 Haiti earthquake was catastrophic, causing serious damage to infrastructure and more than 200000 deaths. Initially, the Haiti earthquake was assumed to occur with the movement of Enriquillo Plantain Garden Fault Zone (EPGFZ), but recent scientific studies have shown that the primary rupture occurred on an unmapped blind thrust fault in the Léogâne fan (associated as Léogâne fault) near the EPGFZ (Figure 1a and 1b). The main purpose of this project are: characterizing and analyzing subsurface structures and associated hazards, characterizing the physical properties of near-surface, locating and understanding the blind faults theorized to have caused the 2010 earthquake (Léogâne fault). Surveys were conducted by a research group from the University of Houston in 2013 to address some of these goals. Surveys were mainly concentrated on Léogâne fan (Figure 1c) and Lake Enriquillo (Figure 1d). For Léogâne surveys, multiple 2D Seismic lines were deployed with approximately N-S orientation. We performed both P wave and S wave refraction analyses and time-migrated the P wave data. The prominent change in both P wave and S wave velocities are interpreted as the effects of faulting. The CMP stacked section shows a multiple discontinuity profile whose location coincides with the anomalies observed at P wave and S wave refraction velocity profile. Extracted reflection coefficients also support a reflective structure at these offsets. We interpret the anomalous structure as North dipping thrust fault. The dip of the fault is estimated around 60°. Near-surface reflection seismic analysis provided deeper information indicating multiple layers with varying velocities, intersected by a number of faults. Gravity surveys were conducted along the main seismic line over Léogâne fan, with additional surveys conducted from Jacmel to Léogâne and around the Port Au Prince area. The estimated Free air gravity profile suggests that the variation of the gravitational field may be related to the proposed faults. More extensive surveys are expected to be conducted in January, 2014. Figure 1 a- digital elevation map of Hispaniola, b- zoomed view of Léogâne fan and Lake Enriquillo with gravity stations, c- surveys over Léogâne area, d- chirp surveys over Lake Enriquillo

Kocel, E.; Stewart, R.; Mann, P.; Dowla, N.



The Role of Science and Engineering in Rebuilding a More Resilient Haiti (Invited)  

NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

Rebuilding a more disaster-resilient Haiti is the defining challenge in the wake of the devastating magnitude-7 earthquake that struck in January. The contrasting experience of Chile, which weathered a magnitude-8.8 earthquake in April with casualties in the hundreds, teaches us that building resilience is an achievable and desirable goal given suitable investments and governance. Scientists and engineers have much to contribute, but doing so requires effective mechanisms to enable them to inform the rebuilding process. The international donor community has been a key point of engagement since their funds provide the opportunity to build new schools, hospitals, critical infrastructure and housing that will not fail in the next disaster. In advance of a gathering of international donors at the end of March, the U.S. National Science and Technology Council’s interagency Subcommittee on Disaster Reduction convened a workshop that brought together over 100 scientists, engineers, planners, and policymakers, including a delegation of Haitian government officials and academics. Hosted by the University of Miami and organized by the Incorporated Research Institutions for Seismology, the workshop was co-sponsored by the U.S. Department of State, U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), and United Nations International Strategy for Disaster Reduction with support from NASA, the National Science Foundation, and the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS). Key findings from the workshop covered the need to adopt and enforce international building codes, to use hazard assessments for earthquakes, inland flooding, and landslides in the planning process, and the central importance of long-term capacity building. As an example of one science agency’s contributions, the USGS informed the initial response by rapidly characterizing the earthquake and delivering estimates of population exposure to strong shaking that were used by humanitarian organizations, aid agencies, and the Haitians themselves. In the ensuing weeks, the USGS tracked aftershocks and issued statements with probabilities of future earthquakes. Early on, the U.S. Southern Command made it possible to put an advance team of engineers and a USGS seismologist on the ground in Haiti. That initial team was followed by the first major deployment of a USGS/USAID Earthquake Disaster Assistance Team, which evolved from the long-standing partnership between these two agencies. EDAT activities included field assessment of faulting, coastal uplift, and landslides; seismometer deployments for aftershock recording and characterization of ground shaking amplification; and development of a probabilistic seismic hazard map for Haiti and the whole island of Hispaniola. The team’s efforts benefited greatly from collaboration with Haitian colleagues with knowledge transfer occurring in both directions. The effort also benefited from significant remote sensing acquisitions, which helped to target field activities and constrain fault rupture patterns. Although the products have been put to use in Haiti, it still remains to turn hazard assessments into tools that can be used for effective planning, building code development and land-use decisions.

Applegate, D.



Seismic rupture process of the 2010 Haiti Earthquake (Mw7.0) inferred from seismic and SAR data  

NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

On January 12th 2010 at 21:53, the Port-au-Prince - Haiti region was struck by an Mw7 earthquake, the second most deadly of the history. The last seismic significant events in the region occurred in November 1751 and June 1770 [1]. Geodetic and geological studies, previous to the 2010 earthquake [2] have warned to the potential of the destructive seismic events in that region and this event has confirmed those warnings. Some aspects of the source of this earthquake are nonconsensual. There is no agreement in the mechanism of rupture or correlation with the fault that should have it generated [3]. In order to better understand the complexity of this rupture, we combined several techniques and data of different nature. We used teleseismic body-wave and Synthetic Aperture Radar data (SAR) based on the following methodology: 1) analysis of the rupture process directivity [4] to determine the velocity and direction of rupture; 2) teleseismic body-wave inversion to obtain the spatiotemporal fault slip distribution and a detailed rupture model; 3) near field surface deformation modeling using the calculated seismic rupture model and compared with the measured deformation field using SAR data of sensor Advanced Land Observing Satellite - Phased Array L-band SAR (ALOS-PALSAR). The combined application of seismic and geodetic data reveals a complex rupture that spread during approximately 12s mainly from WNW to ESE with average velocity of 2,5km/s, on a north-dipping fault plane. Two main asperities are obtained: the first (and largest) occurs within the first ~ 5sec and extends for approximately 6km around the hypocenter; the second one, that happens in the remaining 6s, covers a near surface rectangular strip with about 12km long by 3km wide. The first asperity is compatible with a left lateral strike-slip motion with a small reverse component; the mechanism of second asperity is predominantly reverse. The obtained rupture process allows modeling a coseismic deformation which is in agreement with the deformation field measured by InSAR. [1] Bakun W, Flores C, Brink U, 2012 Significant Earthquakes on the Enriquillo Fault System, Hispaniola, 1500-2010: Implications for Seismic Hazard. Bul. Seis. Soc. of America, 102(1):18-30. [2] Dixon, T. et al., 1998. Relative motion between the Caribbean and North American plates and related boundary zone deformation based on a decade of GPS observations. J. Geophys. Res. 103, 15157-15182. [3] Mercier de Lépinay, B., Deschamps, A., Klingelhoefer, F., Mazabraud, Y., Delouis, B., Clouard, V., Hello Y., Crozon, J., Marcaillou, B., Graindorge, D., Vallée M., Perrot, J., Bouin, M., Saurel, J., Charvis, Philippe, C. and St-Louis, 2011. The 2010 Haiti earthquake: A complex fault pattern constrained by seismologic and tectonic observations, Geoph. Res. Let., 30, L22305 [4] Caldeira B, Bezzeghoud M, Borges JF., 2009 DIRDOP: a directivity approach to determining the seismic rupture velocity vector. J. of Seis.. 2009;14(3):565-600.

Santos, Rúben; Caldeira, Bento; Borges, José; Bezzeghoud, Mourad



Hurricane Isabel  

NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

[figure removed for brevity, see original site] Figure 1: AIRS infrared channel 2333 (2616 cm-1)

[figure removed for brevity, see original site] Figure 2: Total Water Vapor retrieved from AIRS infrared and AMSU-A microwave data

September 18, 2003 These two false-color images show Hurricane Isabel viewed by the AIRS and AMSU-A instruments at 1:30 EDT in the morning of Thursday September 18, 2003. Isabel will be ashore within 12 hours, bringing widespread flooding and destructive winds. In figure 1 on the left, data retrieved by the AIRS infrared sensor shows the hurricane's eye as the small ring of pale blue near the upper left corner of the image. The dark blue band around the eye shows the cold tops of hundreds of powerful thunderstorms. These storms are embedded in the 120 mile per hour winds swirling counterclockwise around Isabel's eye. Cape Hatteras is the finger of land north-northwest of the eye. Isabel's winds will soon push ashore a 4- to 8-foot high mound of 'storm surge' and accompanying high surf, leading to flooding of Cape Hatteras and other islands of North Carolina's Outer Banks. Also seen in the image are several organized bands of cold, (blue) thunderstorm tops being pulled into the storm center. Other thunderstorm are forming north of the islands of Jamaica, Cuba, Hispaniola and Puerto Rico near the bottom of the picture.

Figure 2 shows the geographical distribution and total amount of atmospheric water vapor associated with Isabel as inferred by AIRS and AMSU-A. Very humid areas appear deep red and surround the storm's eye in the ring of thunderstorms, as seen above. The enhancement of atmospheric water vapor in the storm is maintained by evaporation from the wind-churned sea surface. In turn, the water vapor powers the thunderstorms by condensing as rain and releasing the ocean's warmth into the atmosphere to drive strong convection. This makes Isabel and other hurricanes 'heat engines,' converting ocean water's warmth into atmospheric gales. Isabel is weakening as it move ashore and loses its supply of energy from warm water, but not before raining an expected 6-12 inch thick layer of its water over an area extending from South Carolina and New England to the midwest and southern Canada. Paler blue areas in the water vapor image show less humid heights of the atmosphere, which are associated with the colder thunderstorm tops seen in the infrared image.

The Atmospheric Infrared Sounder Experiment, with its visible, infrared, and microwave detectors, provides a three-dimensional look at Earth's weather. Working in tandem, the three instruments can make simultaneous observations all the way down to the Earth's surface, even in the presence of heavy clouds. With more than 2,000 channels sensing different regions of the atmosphere, the system creates a global, 3-D map of atmospheric temperature and humidity and provides information on clouds, greenhouse gases, and many other atmospheric phenomena. The AIRS Infrared Sounder Experiment flies onboard NASA's Aqua spacecraft and is managed by NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, Calif., under contract to NASA. JPL is a division of the California Institute of Technology in Pasadena



Radar Observations of Convective Systems from a High-Altitude Aircraft  

NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

Reflectivity data collected by the precipitation radar on board the tropical Rainfall Measuring Mission (TRMM) satellite, orbiting at 350 km altitude, are compared to reflectivity data collected nearly simultaneously by a doppler radar aboard the NASA ER-2 flying at 19-20 km altitude, i.e. above even the deepest convection. The TRMM precipitation radar is a scanning device with a ground swath width of 215 km, and has a resolution of about a4.4 km in the horizontal and 250 m in the vertical (125 m in the core swath 48 km wide). The TRMM radar has a wavelength of 217 cm (13.8 GHz) and the Nadir mirror echo below the surface is used to correct reflectivity for loss by attenuation. The ER-2 Doppler radar (EDOP) has two antennas, one pointing to the nadir, 34 degrees forward. The forward pointing beam receives both the normal and the cross-polarized echos, so the linear polarization ratio field can be monitored. EDOP has a wavelength of 3.12 cm (9.6 GHz), a vertical resolution of 37.5 m and a horizontal along-track resolution of about 100 m. The 2-D along track airflow field can be synthesized from the radial velocities of both beams, if a reflectivity-based hydrometer fall speed relation can be assumed. It is primarily the superb vertical resolution that distinguishes EDOP from other ground-based or airborne radars. Two experiments were conducted during 1998 into validate TRMM reflectivity data over convection and convectively-generated stratiform precipitation regions. The Teflun-A (TEXAS-Florida Underflight) experiment, was conducted in April and May and focused on mesoscale convective systems mainly in southeast Texas. TEFLUN-B was conducted in August-September in central Florida, in coordination with CAMEX-3 (Convection and Moisture Experiment). The latter was focused on hurricanes, especially during landfall, whereas TEFLUN-B concentrated on central; Florida convection, which is largely driven and organized by surface heating and ensuing sea breeze circulations. Both TEFLUN-A and B were amply supported by surface data, in particular a dense raingauge network, a polarization radar, wind profilers, a mobile radiosonde system, a cloud physics aircraft penetrating the overflown storms, and a network of 10 cm Doppler radars(WSR-88D). This presentation will show some preliminary comparisons between TRMM, EDOP, and WSR-88D reflectivity fields in the case of an MCS, a hurricane, and less organized convection in central Florida. A validation of TRMM reflectivity is important, because TRMM's primary objective is to estimate the rainfall climatology with 35 degrees of the equator. Rainfall is estimated from the radar reflectivity, as well from TRMM's Microwave Imager, which measures at 10.7, 19.4, 21.3, 37, and 85.5 GHz over a broader swath (78 km). While the experiments lasted about three months the cumulative period of near simultaneous observations of storms by ground-based, airborne and space borne radars is only about an hour long. Therefore the comparison is case-study-based, not climatological. We will highlight fundamental differences in the typical reflectivity profiles in stratiform regions of MCS's, Florida convection and hurricanes and will explain why Z-R relationships based on ground-based radar data for convective systems over land should be different from those for hurricanes. These catastrophically intense rainfall from hurricane Georges in Hispaniola and from Mitch in Honduras highlights the importance of accurate Z-R relationships, It will be shown that a Z-R relationship that uses the entire reflectivity profile (rather than just a 1 level) works much better in a variety of cases, making an adjustment of the constants for different precipitation system categories redundant.

Heymsfield, G.; Geerts, B.; Tian, L.



Recommendations for the establishment of the seismic code of Haiti  

NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

Haiti, because of his seismicity associated with plate boundary and several faults that cross the island of Hispaniola (Haiti-Dominican Republic), has been affected in the past by major earthquakes, which have caused loss of life and damage or considerable structural collapses (ex. 1771, 1842), sometimes the destruction of the cities. The recent earthquake of January 12, 2010, was the most destructive earthquake that any country has experienced in modern times, when we measure the number of people killed with respect to the population of a country (Cavallo et al. 2010). It's obvious that the major causes of theses losses are the lack of awareness of the population about the earthquakes, the absence of seismic code and quality control of the building. In this paper, we propose some recommendations for the establishment of the seismic code of Haiti in order to decrease physical and social impacts of earthquakes in the future. First of all, we present a theoretical part of concepts and fundamental elements to establish a seismic code, such as: description of the methodology for seismic hazard's assessment, presentation of the results in terms of acceleration maps for the whole country (in rock sites) and Uniform Hazard Spectrum (UHS) in the cities, and the criteria for soil classification and amplification factors for including site's effects, equivalent forces, etc. Then, we include a practical part where calculations and comparisons of five seismic codes of different countries (Eurocode 8, Spain, Canada, United States and Dominican Republic) are included, in order to have criteria for making the proposals for Haiti. Using the results of Benito et al (presented in this session S10) we compare the UHS in different cities of Haiti with the response spectrum derived from the application of the spectral shapes given by the aforementioned codes. Furthermore, the classification of soils and buildings have been also analyzed and contrasted with local data in order to propose the more suitable classification for Haiti. Finally, we have proposed a methodology for the forces estimation providing the values of the relevant coefficients. References: EN 1998-1:2004 (E): Eurocode 8, Design of structures for earthquake resistance, Part 1(General Rules, seismic actions and rules for buildings), 2004. -MTPTC, (2011). Règles de calcul intérimaires pour les bâtiments en Haïti, Ministère des Travaux Publics, Transports et Communications, Février 2011, Haïti. -NBCC 2005: National Building Code of Canada, vol1, National Research Council of Canada 2005. -NCSE-02: Norma de construcción sismorresistente de España. BOE num.244, Viernes 11 Octubre 2002. -NEHRP, 2009. Recommended Provisions for Seismic Regulations for new Buildings and Other Structures, FEMA P-750, February, Part 1 (Provisions) and Part 2 (Commentary). -R-001 (2011): Reglamento para el análisis y diseño sísmico de estructuras de República Dominicana. Decreto No. 201-11. Ministerio de Obras Públicas y Comunicaciones.

Pierristal, G.; Benito, B.; Cervera, J.; Belizaire, D.



Late Cretaceous to Middle Eocene Geological Evolution of the Northwestern Caribbean - Constraints from Cuban Data  

NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

Cuba acts as the northwestern boundary of the Caribbean Sea. However it is not part of the Caribbean plate, its geological development is deeply related to the plate history. In fact, its Cretaceous volcanic arc rocks tightly correlate with coeval sections in Hispaniola and Puerto Rico, and the same probably occurs with the ophiolites. The early Palaeogene events in Cuba were also involved in the Caribbean plate history. In general, two principal structural levels can be distinguished in the geological structure of Cuba. The rocks belonging to the upper level (Eocene to Quaternary) are little disturbed and can be referred to as the cover. Below it occurs the great complex of the Cuban orogenic belt, which consists mainly of rocks of Jurassic to Eocene age. In addition, small outcrops of Proterozoic metamorphic rocks also occur in north central Cuba. The Palaeocene-Eocene section contains volcanic arc sequences in SE Cuba and northward thrusted piggy back and foreland basins in central and western Cuba. The Mesozoic rocks lies unconformably below. The contacts between the major Mesozoic elements are always tectonic. With the exception of the rocks of the passive Mesozoic margin of North America in northern Cuba, the remaining units represent tectonostratigraphic terranes extending parallel to the axis of the present main island of Cuba. The northernmost unit is the Mesozoic passive continental margin of North America. It consists of a Jurassic- Cretaceous mainly marine sedimentary sequence now exposed as a thrust and fold belt along the northern edge of the Cuban mainland. The other units are, from north to south: the Northern Ophiolitic Belt, the Volcanic Arc Terrane and the Southern Metamorphic Terranes. The ophiolites and the Cretaceous volcanic arc terranes belong to the Proto-Caribbean plate and were accreted to the palaeomargin during Late Cretaceous and early Palaeogene episodes. Some constrains to Caribbean plate origin and evolution according to data from Cuba: Ophiolites: 1- The age of the rocks of the northern ophiolite belt is Upper Jurassic-Albian. Oceanic lithosphere formation, at least in the "Cuban" Proto-Caribbean, ended in the Albian. Cretaceous volcanic arcs: 2- At least two volcanic arc Cretaceous sections are present in Cuba, separated in several regions by a mainly sedimentary Albian-Cenomanian section. The lower arc is probably of Aptian-Albian age. The Cenomanian (or Turonian?) -Campanian upper arc is calcalkalic and contains abundant sedimentary marine interbeds. 3- Some thin tuff beds are present in the southernmost deep water deposits of the North American palaeomargin in western and central Cuba in the Aptian-Cenomanian. This fact could be explained by a volcanic arc located several hundred km to the south of the NA palaeomargin. 4- Cretaceous volcanism ended during the early Campanian all along Cuba. Sedimentary upper Campanian and Maastrichtian sections rest on top of the older Cretaceous sections. Volcanism is only reassumed in SE Cuba (Turquino volcanic arc) late in the Danian. Southern metamorphic terranes: 5- The southern metamorphic terranes are a main feature in the geology of Cuba. They are continental blocks sharing many stratigraphic features with the NA palaeomargin of western Cuba (Guaniguanico mountains). As the last one area seems related to the Yucatan (Maya) block, some authors consider the metamorphic terranes as fragments of the Maya block that travelled to the west.

Cobiella, J.; Hueneke, H.; Meschede, M.; Sommer, M.



Further Evidence for Medieval Faulting along the Puerto Rico Trench  

NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

Has the Antilles Subduction Zone produced thrust or outer-rise earthquakes east of Hispaniola? An affirmative answer is suggested by tiered evidence for overwash 120 km south of the Puerto Rico Trench. The evidence comes from Anegada, British Virgin Islands, 200 km east-northeast of San Juan, Puerto Rico. PREVIOUS FINDINGS* suggested that a medieval overwash event had greater geologic effects at Anegada than did a Lisbon(?) event, and that both events outrank recent storms. The medieval overwash, in AD 1200-1450, dislodged brain corals from a reef, moved them as much as 500 m across a shallow subtidal flat, and scattered them as solitary boulders as much as 1000 m inland. Gentler overwash in 1650-1800, called Lisbon(?) because it may represent the 1755 tsunami, laid down a sheet of sand and island-derived shells as much as 1500 m from the north shore. A recent hurricane of category 4 left no durable geologic record other than sandy fans within 40 m of the south shore. NEW FINDINGS reinforce the ranking medieval > Lisbon(?) > storm: (1) The medieval event washed ashore marine shells that the Lisbon(?) event did not. An articulated marine bivalve (Codakia orbicularis), probably deposited live, is part of an overwash fan 400 m inland from Windlass Bight. The shell dates to the same time window as the medieval coral boulders. Additional articulated Codakia shells and a conch shell adjoin the buried base of one of these coral boulders 1500 m south of the fringing reef from which the coral was probably derived. (2) Lisbon(?) overwash used breaches that the medieval event had cut through beach ridges of the north shore. The re-use is marked by sand: on the muddy floor of a partly filled breach, on an organic soil in another such breach, and on a pre-existing fan south of an area of beach-ridge dissection. The buried organic soil, inset into a old breach, is 500 m inland from an area, near Cow Wreck High Point, where young beach ridges may have been breached for the first time during the Lisbon(?) event. (3) A storm berm of coral rubble lies seaward of a field of coral boulders that marks the medieval overwash. The berm rises as much as 3 m above fair-weather high tides along Anegada's north shore at Soldier Wash, a sand-free stretch of coast 100 m from the fringing reef. The berm consists of imbricated, well-rounded fragments 15-30 cm in diameter on average. This rubble differs in preservation, size, and distribution from the brain-coral heads 1 m in diameter that the medieval overwash scattered hundreds of meters inland from Soldier Wash. *REFERENCES; 2012 fall AGU abs OS32A-05 T41A-2562, and T41A-2566.

Atwater, B. F.; Ten Brink, U. S.; Fuentes, Z.; Halley, R. B.; Spiske, M.; Tuttle, M. P.; Wei, Y.



MOTION UNDER THE OCEAN: Determining mantle flow of the Northeast Caribbean with seismic anisotropy  

NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

Active plate boundaries in the Northeast Caribbean have formed a complex tectonic environment which includes transform and subduction zones. The Caribbean-North America plate boundary is one such active margin, where subduction transitions from arc- to oblique-type off the northeast coast of Puerto Rico. Several lines of evidence support the notion of a slab tear within the subducting North American plate at this transition zone, including the counter-clockwise rotation of the Puerto Rico microplate over the past 10 Ma and clusters of small seismic events. Understanding mantle flow in this region will not only help determine the nature of tectonic activity controlling these margins, but will also aid our understanding of anomalies, such as slab tears. Mantle flow and crustal deformation are believed to be the main controls of anisotropy in the lithosphere and asthenosphere. When a shear-wave passes through an anisotropic medium, it is split into a fast and slow component, with the fast shear-wave polarized along the fast direction of that medium. Shear-wave splitting is a tool used to determine the strength and direction of such anisotropy. Previous studies in the Caribbean have generally shown fast shear-wave polarization directions parallel to trenches and/or plate boundaries, indicating mantle flow around the plate (Growdon et al. 2009; Masy et al. 2011; Piñero-Feliciangeli and Kendall 2008). We have focused a detailed investigation of seismic anisotropy from 31 stations across six networks in the Northeast Caribbean to better constrain mantle flow in this region. Shear-wave splitting measurements of teleseismic core phases (e.g., SKS and SKKS) were completed using SplitLab, a Matlab° based environment created by Wüstefeld et al. (2008). This program enables the user to compare the quality of results from three splitting methods: rotation correlation (Bowman and Ando, 1987), minimum energy (Silver and Chan, 1991) and eigenvalue (Silver and Chan, 1991). Noisy seismic data is common to these island-based stations due to energy generated by ocean wave action. To overcome this limitation, we stacked error diagrams obtained from our split analyses to produce more robust solutions (Wolfe and Silver, 1998; Monteiller and Chevrot, 2010). A regional synthesis of our results reveals fast shear-wave polarizations that are generally oriented parallel to the plate boundary with intermediate to high split times. For example, polarization directions are oriented roughly N-S along the bulk of the Lesser Antilles, E-W along the Puerto Rico Trench and the northern Lesser Antilles, and NW-SE beneath Hispaniola. Beneath the U.S. and British Virgin Islands, however, the fast polarization direction differs markedly from the regional pattern, becoming almost perpendicular to the plate boundary. Stations on Anegada and St. Croix show a fast polarization direction that is oriented nearly N-S and smaller delay times than surrounding stations. These results suggest that mantle flow is redirected N-S at this location through a gap in the subducted lithosphere of the North American plate. This new understanding of plate geometries and mantle flow provides insight into the controls of Northeast Caribbean tectonism and to other regions around the world with proposed slab tears and gaps.

Mintz, H. E.; Pulliam, J.



Latest Pleistocene to Holocene Evolution of the Baie de Port au Prince, Haiti  

NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

The Baie de Port au Prince (BPP) is adjacent a restraining segment of the sinistral Caribbean-North America plate boundary and is therefore situated between converging high-relief thrust systems, the Massif Selle (Peninsula Range) to the south and the Chaine de Matheux (Hispaniola highlands) to the north. To evaluate neotectonic deformation, seismic hazards and sedimentation patterns for the BPP, six gravity cores were studied within the framework of chirp profiles collected from the R/V Endeavor in 2010. The cores were recovered from 76 m to 148 m of water depth sampling sediment from the carbonate platform that rims the BPP and from the slope. We studied the biostratigraphy (foraminifers, nannoplankton), geochemical elemental composition and physical properties of the sediment. An age model from the last glacial to the present (~20 ka BP) was derived from radiocarbon. Nannoplankton biostratigraphy provide constraints on the late Pleistocene. The BPP is 150 m maximum water depth and is rimmed by an ~30 m deep carbonate platform that has undergone dissolution. Terraces characterize the sub-bottom topography to the NE. This topography was covered by sediment during at least one relative sea-level cycle. Sediment progradation and mass-wasting on the northern and southern flanks of the BPP respectively, occurred during the latest Pleistocene low stand (~20 ka BP). Increased sedimentation from 0.2 mm/year to 0.8 mm/year occurred from 14.2 ka BP to 9.5 ka BP. This period also corresponds with a global rapid rate in sea-level rise from -94 m to -37 m. A basin wide acoustically transparent layer of sediment ~10 m thick covered the BPP. Mass-wasting, microfaulting, fluidization and turbidites caused by erosion triggered by pre-historic earthquakes possibly associated with EPG transform fault are found in the cores. One such deposit is possibly associated to the 2010 earthquake and another to an unconformable surface that separates early- from late-Holocene sediment on the slope. The late Pleistocene sediment is laminated and microfossils assemblages reveal sediment reworking and shallow water depths. Normal marine sedimentation resumed from ~14 ka BP to the present. The climate was characterized by wet or high discharge intervals noted by an influx of wood fragments and sediment most likely derived from land (>Si weight %, Al%, Fe% and Cu ppm). Wet periods were less frequent in the Holocene. The late Holocene trend is to dryer climate consistent with previous studies of the region. Evaporation is manifested by an increase in subhedral gypsum coated in calcite. Limited chirp profiles across the BPP suggest subsidence to the south. Ages from the base of the cores will verify this possibility. Coseismic 2010 uplift was documented in the southwestern part of the Leogane delta, an area that has no evidence of long-term uplift. Chirp profiles and multibeam bathymetry close to this uplift, show a deepening of the sea-floor suggestive of ongoing subsidence. More studies are needed to better understand the long-term patterns of subsidence and uplift in this region.

Rios, J. K.; McHugh, C. M.; Seeber, L.; Blair, S.; Sorlien, C. C.



Overview of Collaborative Project to Develop Tsunami Hazard Assessments for the US Atlantic and Gulf Coasts  

NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

In response to the 2004 Indian Ocean Tsunami, and in anticipation of new license applications, the United States Nuclear Regulatory Commission (US NRC) initiated a long-term research program to improve understanding of tsunami hazard levels for coastal facilities on the U.S. Atlantic and Gulf Coasts. For this effort, the US NRC organized a collaborative research program with researchers at the United States Geological Survey (USGS) and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA). Key researchers from universities and other groups have also made important contributions to this program. The work undertaken represents the combined effort of a diverse group of marine geologists, geophysicists, geotechnical engineers, and hydrodynamic modelers. The Atlantic and Gulf coasts are the focus of this program due to the number of existing and proposed nuclear facilities located on these coasts and because less is generally known about tsunami hazard on these coasts. Because the US NRC is interested in understanding hazard associated with the rare large tsunami that may occur over long time periods (in excess of 10,000 years), the research program considers both seismic and landslide tsunamigenic sources. It also includes the study of both large far-field sources and near-field sources. The study of tsunamigenic landslides is a key difference between this research program and other tsunami hazard assessment programs. In the initial phase, significant effort was focused on identifying and characterizing offshore near-field landslides and on understanding their regional distribution along the coasts. Once early results were obtained, modeling of one of the larger slides was initiated to better understand the hazard posed by the slides identified. Important properties of the slide, such as flow velocity, were characterized through work that included analysis of the dynamic elements. The research related to far-field tsunamigenic landslides has similarly focused on collecting existing information and assessing the potential impact to the coasts. The focus of seismic sources focused on the Hispaniola-Puerto Rico-Lesser Antilles subduction zone and the enigmatic zone of large earthquakes west of Gibraltar. These source areas were investigated, an evaluation of their tsunamigenic potential was undertaken, and the potential for hazard to the U.S. coastline was considered. As part of the current phase, the USGS will conduct field investigations in key locations for the purpose of filling existing data gaps. Investigations will also continue to assess landslide potential in the Gulf of Mexico and to determine the source of the 1755 Lisbon earthquake. The potential for developing tools and data to undertake probabilistic tsunami hazard assessments (PTHA) will also be a key focus of later phases of the program. Simultaneously, the NOAA MOST tsunami generation and propagation model is being enhanced to include landslide-based initiation mechanisms and is being validated with case studies. The enhanced MOST model will be used to investigate the tsunamigenic sources characterized by the USGS, with the goal of creating an estimation of deterministic tsunami hazard levels for the length of Atlantic and Gulf Coasts.

Kammerer, A. M.; ten Brink, U. S.; Titov, V. V.



Changing Water-Resources on Ile de la Gonave, Haiti  

NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

Ile de la Gonave is a 750-square-kilometer island off the western coast of Haiti. The island is composed of Eocene and Miocene limestones unconformably overlain by Pleistocene limestone. The highest elevation is 778 meters. Annual precipitation varies across the island because of the orographic effect and ranges from 800 to 1,400 millimeters. There is no surface water except immediately after large storms. Droughts, some extending for more than one year, and frequent crop failures due to droughts have been reported. Potential evaporation is estimated to be about 2,000 millimeters at the coast, but less at higher elevations. Consequently most rain is lost through evapotranspiration; recharge to the limestone aquifers apparently occurs only after large storms and is estimated to be about 4 percent of the mean annul precipitation based on a chloride mass balance. Depth to the water table ranges from less than 30 meters in the Eocene and Miocene limestones to over 60 meters in the 300-meter thick Quaternary limestone. Average annual precipitation at Port au-Prince (50 kilometers to the east and on the main island of Hispaniola) has decreased from about 1600 millimeters in 1860's to about 1300 mm in the 1950's. Precipitation data from Port-au-Prince after the 1950's are sporadic, making further comments about climate change difficult. Even without decreasing precipitation, which may be due in part to climate change or the deforestation of Haiti, the increasing population on Ile de la Gonave has and will continue to exacerbate the scarce water supply, particularly because of the small number of sources (springs, cave pools, and wells) where people can obtain water. Women take an average of almost three hours per day to travel an average of 2.5 kilometers (one-way) to obtain water for their families. Because of the difficulties in obtaining freshwater, the 100,000 inhabitants use an average of only 7 to 13 liters per person per day. Reconnaissance field analyses indicate that ground water in the interior of the island is of a calcium-bicarbonate type, while water at the coast is of a sodium-chloride type and has mixed with as much as 20 percent seawater. Tests for the presence of hydrogen sulfide-producing bacteria were negative in most drilled wells, but positive in most capped springs and positive in all springs, cave pools, and hand-dug wells, indicating contamination of most drinking-water sources. Widespread bacterial contamination of the water is not surprising, in that there are few latrines on the island and livestock grazes everywhere, enabling waste to be washed into the drinking water sources. The contaminated drinking water likely causes typhoid fever, which is frequently seen in the one hospital on the island.

Troester, J. W.



A Seismo-Tectonic Signal From Offshore Sedimentation: The 2010 Haiti Earthquake and Prior Events  

NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

The Mw 7.0 January 2010 earthquake in Haiti was one of the deadliest in history. It involved multiple faults along or near the main Enriquillo-Plantain Garden Fault (EPGF). This left-lateral transform is a branch of the northern Caribbean plate boundary across southern Hispaniola. The main rupture was strike-slip but almost all aftershocks had thrust mechanisms, and surface deformation may have been concentrated on anticline forelimbs driven by blind thrust faults. Earthquake generated mass-wasting and turbidity currents were sampled from the Canal du Sud slope (~1000 m water depth), a basin at 1500 m, and the deepest part of the strait at 1700 m. The turbidites were strongly correlated by 234Th with a half-life of 24 days. In the deepest area, a turbidite-homogenite unit (T-H) extends over 50 km2 and is composed of basal sand beds 5 cm thick and 50 cm of mud above. The sedimentary structures in the sand were linked to oscillatory motions by internal seiches. The T-H units recovered from the slope and deep basin are similar in composition. The Leogane Delta, upslope from the sampling sites, is rich in this lithology that has been linked to oceanic basement rocks exposed on the southern Haitian peninsula. In contrast, the T-H unit recovered from the basin at 1500 m is perched behind a thrust anticline and has a greater concentration of Ca derived from Ca rich sources such as the Tapion Ridge on the southern peninsula. The Tapion Ridge is a compressional structure associated with a restraining bend along the EPGF. The T-H unit beneath the 2010 deposit has a 14C age of 2400 cal yrs BP, and interpreted as an earthquake triggered deposit. It is nearly identical in thickness, composition and fine structures to the 2010 T-H. Notably absent from the record are younger turbidites that could have been linked to the historic 1770 AD and other similar earthquakes expected from GPS rates across the EPGF. Two hypotheses are being considered for this long gap in T-H sedimentation. One proposes that during relative high stands of sea level fringing reefs are trapping sediment on the shelf and that a critical accumulation is needed to generate failure. Many large local earthquakes could have occurred before reaching this critical thickness. Low sedimentation rates (6 cm/1000 yrs) support this possibility. Our preferred hypothesis, alternatively, links T-Hs to earthquakes with a large thrust component such as the 2010 event in order to generate failure. This latter hypothesis accounts for some earthquakes producing no turbidites while others, such as the 2010 event, do. It also accounts for the fracturing sampled along 8 km of the perched basin. We propose that thrust earthquakes along the Tapion Ridge segment of the EPGF reoccur at ~2000-year intervals and this sedimentary signal is preserved in Canal du Sud.

McHugh, C. M.; Seeber, L.; Cormier, M.; Hornbach, M.; Momplaisir, R.; Waldhauser, F.; Sorlien, C. C.; Steckler, M. S.; Gulick, S.