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Sample records for metacommunity dynamics decline

  1. Temporal dynamics of a local fish community are strongly affected by immigration from the surrounding metacommunity

    PubMed Central

    Stoffels, Rick J; Clarke, Kenneth Robert; Linklater, Danielle S

    2015-01-01

    A 5-year time series of annual censuses was collected from a large floodplain lake to determine how dynamics of the local fish community were affected by changes in hydrological connectivity with the surrounding metacommunity. The lake was disconnected from the metacommunity for 1 year prior to our study and remained disconnected until 3 months before our third annual census, when a flood reconnected the lake to the metacommunity. We determined how changes in connectivity affected temporal dynamics of (1) local community composition and (2) the population composition, condition, and growth of catfish, to shed light on how immigration of other species might affect local population dynamics. Before reconnection, the community was likely shaped by interactions between the local environment and species traits. The reconnection caused significant immigration and change in community composition and correlated with a significant and abrupt decline in catfish condition, growth, and abundance; effects likely due to the immigration of a competitor with a similar trophic niche: carp. The community was slow to return to its preconnection state, which may be due to dispersal traits of the fishes, and a time-lag in the recovery of the local catfish population following transient intensification of species interactions. The dynamics observed were concordant with the species sorting and mass-effects perspectives of metacommunity theory. Floods cause episodic dispersal in floodplain fish metacommunities, and so, flood frequency determines the relative importance of regional and local processes. Local processes may be particularly important to certain species, but these species may need sufficient time between floods for population increase, before the next flood-induced dispersal episode brings competitors and predators that might cause population decline. Accordingly, species coexistence in these metacommunities may be facilitated by spatiotemporal storage effects, which may in

  2. Species Turnover through Time: Colonization and Extinction Dynamics across Metacommunities.

    PubMed

    Nuvoloni, Felipe Micali; Feres, Reinaldo José Fazzio; Gilbert, Benjamin

    2016-06-01

    Island biogeography and metacommunity theory often use equilibrium assumptions to predict local diversity, yet nonequilibrium dynamics are common in nature. In nonequilibrium communities, local diversity fluctuates through time as the relative importance of colonization and extinction change. Here, we test the prevalence and causes of nonequilibrium dynamics in metacommunities of mites associated with rubber trees distributed over large spatial (>1,000 km) and temporal (>30-60 generations) scales in Brazil. We measured colonization and extinction rates to test species turnover and nonequilibrium dynamics over a growing season. Mite metacommunities exhibited nonequilibrium dynamics for most months of the year, and these dynamics tracked climatic conditions. Monthly shifts in temperature of more than 1°C resulted in nonequilibrium dynamics, as did mean temperatures outside of two critical ranges. Nonequilibrium dynamics were caused by a change in colonization with temperature change and changes in both colonization and extinction with absolute temperature. Species turnover showed different trends; high relative humidity increased both colonization and extinction rates, increasing turnover but not nonequilibrium dynamics. Our study illustrates that testing nonequilibrium dynamics can provide new insights into the drivers of colonization, extinction, and diversity fluctuations in metacommunities. PMID:27172597

  3. Species sorting and patch dynamics in harlequin metacommunities affect the relative importance of environment and space.

    PubMed

    Leibold, Mathew A; Loeuille, Nicolas

    2015-12-01

    Metacommunity theory indicates that variation in local community structure can be partitioned into components including those related to local environmental conditions vs. spatial effects and that these can be quantified using statistical methods based on variation partitioning. It has been hypothesized that joint associations of community composition with environment and space could be due to patch dynamics involving colonization-extinction processes in environmentally heterogeneous landscapes but this has yet to be theoretically shown. We develop a two-patch, type-two, species competition model in such a "harlequin" landscape (where different patches have different environments) to evaluate how composition is related to environmental and spatial effects as a function of background extinction rate. Using spatially implicit analytical models, we find that the environmental association of community composition declines with extinction rate as expected. Using spatially explicit simulation models, we further find that there is an increase in the spatial structure with extinction due to spatial patterning into clusters that are not related to environmental conditions but that this increase is limited. Natural metacommunities often show both environment and spatial determination even under conditions of relatively high isolation and these could be more easily explained by our model than alternative metacommunity models. PMID:26909428

  4. Organic fields sustain weed metacommunity dynamics in farmland landscapes

    PubMed Central

    Henckel, Laura; Börger, Luca; Meiss, Helmut; Gaba, Sabrina; Bretagnolle, Vincent

    2015-01-01

    Agro-ecosystems constitute essential habitat for many organisms. Agricultural intensification, however, has caused a strong decline of farmland biodiversity. Organic farming (OF) is often presented as a more biodiversity-friendly practice, but the generality of the beneficial effects of OF is debated as the effects appear often species- and context-dependent, and current research has highlighted the need to quantify the relative effects of local- and landscape-scale management on farmland biodiversity. Yet very few studies have investigated the landscape-level effects of OF; that is to say, how the biodiversity of a field is affected by the presence or density of organically farmed fields in the surrounding landscape. We addressed this issue using the metacommunity framework, with weed species richness in winter wheat within an intensively farmed landscape in France as model system. Controlling for the effects of local and landscape structure, we showed that OF leads to higher local weed diversity and that the presence of OF in the landscape is associated with higher local weed biodiversity also for conventionally farmed fields, and may reach a similar biodiversity level to organic fields in field margins. Based on these results, we derive indications for improving the sustainable management of farming systems. PMID:25994672

  5. Disturbance-mediated colonization-extinction dynamics in experimental protist metacommunities.

    PubMed

    Fukumori, Kayoko; Livingston, George; Leibold, Mathew A

    2015-12-01

    Colonization-extinction dynamics and species sorting among habitats deter- mine the distribution of species within metacommunities. Theory suggests that disturbances reduce the importance of species sorting and enhance spatial patterning and stochastic effects, however this has not yet been experimentally shown. We examined how extinctions in a heterogeneous landscape of patches affects the influence of environmental, spatial, and stochastic factors on community composition in a simple two-species, two-habitat, protist metacommunity where each species dominates in a different habitat type. We imposed four different levels of random extinctions on local patches and monitored changes in the metacommunity through time. We found that near-steady state patterns of community variability developed relatively rapidly (within nine colonization-extinction cycles) and that increased extinction rate produced altered patterns of community regulation by reducing environmental control and increasing spatial and stochastic effects. Our results indicate a possible explanation for the combination of environmental, spatial and stochastic effects observed in natural metacommunities. PMID:26909429

  6. Predator identity influences metacommunity assembly.

    PubMed

    Johnston, Nicole K; Pu, Zhichao; Jiang, Lin

    2016-09-01

    Predation is among the most important biotic factors influencing natural communities, yet we have a rather rudimentary understanding of its role in modulating metacommunity assembly. We experimentally examined the effects of two different predators (a generalist and a specialist) on metacommunity assembly, using protist microcosm metacommunities that varied in predator identity, dispersal among local communities and the history of species colonization into local communities. Generalist predation resulted in reduced α diversity and increased β diversity irrespective of dispersal, likely due to predation-induced stochastic extinction of different prey species in different local communities. Dispersal, however, induced source-sink dynamics in the presence of specialist predators, resulting in higher α diversity and marginally lower β diversity. These results demonstrate the distinct effects of different predators on prey metacommunity assembly, emphasizing the need to explore the role of predator diet breadth in structuring metacommunities. PMID:27349796

  7. Invertebrate Metacommunity Structure and Dynamics in an Andean Glacial Stream Network Facing Climate Change.

    PubMed

    Cauvy-Fraunié, Sophie; Espinosa, Rodrigo; Andino, Patricio; Jacobsen, Dean; Dangles, Olivier

    2015-01-01

    Under the ongoing climate change, understanding the mechanisms structuring the spatial distribution of aquatic species in glacial stream networks is of critical importance to predict the response of aquatic biodiversity in the face of glacier melting. In this study, we propose to use metacommunity theory as a conceptual framework to better understand how river network structure influences the spatial organization of aquatic communities in glacierized catchments. At 51 stream sites in an Andean glacierized catchment (Ecuador), we sampled benthic macroinvertebrates, measured physico-chemical and food resource conditions, and calculated geographical, altitudinal and glaciality distances among all sites. Using partial redundancy analysis, we partitioned community variation to evaluate the relative strength of environmental conditions (e.g., glaciality, food resource) vs. spatial processes (e.g., overland, watercourse, and downstream directional dispersal) in organizing the aquatic metacommunity. Results revealed that both environmental and spatial variables significantly explained community variation among sites. Among all environmental variables, the glacial influence component best explained community variation. Overland spatial variables based on geographical and altitudinal distances significantly affected community variation. Watercourse spatial variables based on glaciality distances had a unique significant effect on community variation. Within alpine catchment, glacial meltwater affects macroinvertebrate metacommunity structure in many ways. Indeed, the harsh environmental conditions characterizing glacial influence not only constitute the primary environmental filter but also, limit water-borne macroinvertebrate dispersal. Therefore, glacier runoff acts as an aquatic dispersal barrier, isolating species in headwater streams, and preventing non-adapted species to colonize throughout the entire stream network. Under a scenario of glacier runoff decrease, we

  8. Invertebrate Metacommunity Structure and Dynamics in an Andean Glacial Stream Network Facing Climate Change

    PubMed Central

    Cauvy-Fraunié, Sophie; Espinosa, Rodrigo; Andino, Patricio; Jacobsen, Dean; Dangles, Olivier

    2015-01-01

    Under the ongoing climate change, understanding the mechanisms structuring the spatial distribution of aquatic species in glacial stream networks is of critical importance to predict the response of aquatic biodiversity in the face of glacier melting. In this study, we propose to use metacommunity theory as a conceptual framework to better understand how river network structure influences the spatial organization of aquatic communities in glacierized catchments. At 51 stream sites in an Andean glacierized catchment (Ecuador), we sampled benthic macroinvertebrates, measured physico-chemical and food resource conditions, and calculated geographical, altitudinal and glaciality distances among all sites. Using partial redundancy analysis, we partitioned community variation to evaluate the relative strength of environmental conditions (e.g., glaciality, food resource) vs. spatial processes (e.g., overland, watercourse, and downstream directional dispersal) in organizing the aquatic metacommunity. Results revealed that both environmental and spatial variables significantly explained community variation among sites. Among all environmental variables, the glacial influence component best explained community variation. Overland spatial variables based on geographical and altitudinal distances significantly affected community variation. Watercourse spatial variables based on glaciality distances had a unique significant effect on community variation. Within alpine catchment, glacial meltwater affects macroinvertebrate metacommunity structure in many ways. Indeed, the harsh environmental conditions characterizing glacial influence not only constitute the primary environmental filter but also, limit water-borne macroinvertebrate dispersal. Therefore, glacier runoff acts as an aquatic dispersal barrier, isolating species in headwater streams, and preventing non-adapted species to colonize throughout the entire stream network. Under a scenario of glacier runoff decrease, we

  9. Condition-dependent movement and dispersal in experimental metacommunities.

    PubMed

    Fronhofer, Emanuel A; Klecka, Jan; Melián, Carlos J; Altermatt, Florian

    2015-09-01

    Dispersal and the underlying movement behaviour are processes of pivotal importance for understanding and predicting metapopulation and metacommunity dynamics. Generally, dispersal decisions are condition-dependent and rely on information in the broad sense, like the presence of conspecifics. However, studies on metacommunities that include interspecific interactions generally disregard condition-dependence. Therefore, it remains unclear whether and how dispersal in metacommunities is condition-dependent and whether rules derived from single-species contexts can be scaled up to (meta)communities. Using experimental protist metacommunities, we show how dispersal and movement depend on and are adjusted by the strength of interspecific interactions. We found that the predicting movement and dispersal in metacommunities requires knowledge on behavioural responses to intra- and interspecific interaction strengths. Consequently, metacommunity dynamics inferred directly from single-species metapopulations without taking interspecific interactions into account are likely flawed. Our work identifies the significance of condition-dependence for understanding metacommunity dynamics, stability and the coexistence and distribution of species. PMID:26206470

  10. Connectivity and propagule sources composition drive ditch plant metacommunity structure

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Favre-Bac, Lisa; Ernoult, Aude; Mony, Cendrine; Rantier, Yann; Nabucet, Jean; Burel, Françoise

    2014-11-01

    The fragmentation of agricultural landscapes has a major impact on biodiversity. In addition to habitat loss, dispersal limitation increasingly appears as a significant driver of biodiversity decline. Landscape linear elements, like ditches, may reduce the negative impacts of fragmentation by enhancing connectivity for many organisms, in addition to providing refuge habitats. To characterize these effects, we investigated the respective roles of propagule source composition and connectivity at the landscape scale on hydrochorous and non-hydrochorous ditch bank plant metacommunities. Twenty-seven square sites (0.5 km2 each) were selected in an agricultural lowland of northern France. At each site, plant communities were sampled on nine ditch banks (totaling 243 ditches). Variables characterizing propagule sources composition and connectivity were calculated for landscape mosaic and ditch network models. The landscape mosaic influenced only non-hydrochorous species, while the ditch network impacted both hydrochorous and non-hydrochorous species. Non-hydrochorous metacommunities were dependent on a large set of land-use elements, either within the landscape mosaic or adjacent to the ditch network, whereas hydrochorous plant metacommunities were only impacted by the presence of ditches adjacent to crops and roads. Ditch network connectivity also influenced both hydrochorous and non-hydrochorous ditch bank plant metacommunity structure, suggesting that beyond favoring hydrochory, ditches may also enhance plant dispersal by acting on other dispersal vectors. Increasing propagule sources heterogeneity and connectivity appeared to decrease within-metacommunity similarity within landscapes. Altogether, our results suggest that the ditch network's composition and configuration impacts plant metacommunity structure by affecting propagule dispersal possibilities, with contrasted consequences depending on species' dispersal vectors.

  11. A comparative analysis of metacommunity types in the freshwater realm

    PubMed Central

    Heino, Jani; Soininen, Janne; Alahuhta, Janne; Lappalainen, Jyrki; Virtanen, Risto

    2015-01-01

    Most metacommunity studies have taken a direct mechanistic approach, aiming to model the effects of local and regional processes on local communities within a metacommunity. An alternative approach is to focus on emergent patterns at the metacommunity level through applying the elements of metacommunity structure (EMS; Oikos, 97, 2002, 237) analysis. The EMS approach has very rarely been applied in the context of a comparative analysis of metacommunity types of main microbial, plant, and animal groups. Furthermore, to our knowledge, no study has associated metacommunity types with their potential ecological correlates in the freshwater realm. We assembled data for 45 freshwater metacommunities, incorporating biologically highly disparate organismal groups (i.e., bacteria, algae, macrophytes, invertebrates, and fish). We first examined ecological correlates (e.g., matrix properties, beta diversity, and average characteristics of a metacommunity, including body size, trophic group, ecosystem type, life form, and dispersal mode) of the three elements of metacommunity structure (i.e., coherence, turnover, and boundary clumping). Second, based on those three elements, we determined which metacommunity types prevailed in freshwater systems and which ecological correlates best discriminated among the observed metacommunity types. We found that the three elements of metacommunity structure were not strongly related to the ecological correlates, except that turnover was positively related to beta diversity. We observed six metacommunity types. The most common were Clementsian and quasi-nested metacommunity types, whereas Random, quasi-Clementsian, Gleasonian, and quasi-Gleasonian types were less common. These six metacommunity types were best discriminated by beta diversity and the first axis of metacommunity ecological traits, ranging from metacommunities of producer organisms occurring in streams to those of large predatory organisms occurring in lakes. Our results showed

  12. Community rescue in experimental metacommunities

    PubMed Central

    Low-Décarie, Etienne; Kolber, Marcus; Homme, Paige; Lofano, Andrea; Dumbrell, Alex; Gonzalez, Andrew; Bell, Graham

    2015-01-01

    The conditions that allow biodiversity to recover following severe environmental degradation are poorly understood. We studied community rescue, the recovery of a viable community through the evolutionary rescue of many populations within an evolving community, in metacommunities of soil microbes adapting to a herbicide. The metacommunities occupied a landscape of crossed spatial gradients of the herbicide (Dalapon) and a resource (glucose), whereas their constituent communities were either isolated or connected by dispersal. The spread of adapted communities across the landscape and the persistence of communities when that landscape was degraded were strongly promoted by dispersal, and the capacity to adapt to lethal stress was also related to community size and initial diversity. After abrupt and lethal stress, community rescue was most frequent in communities that had previously experienced sublethal levels of stress and had been connected by dispersal. Community rescue occurred through the evolutionary rescue of both initially common taxa, which remained common, and of initially rare taxa, which grew to dominate the evolved community. Community rescue may allow productivity and biodiversity to recover from severe environmental degradation. PMID:26578777

  13. Community rescue in experimental metacommunities.

    PubMed

    Low-Décarie, Etienne; Kolber, Marcus; Homme, Paige; Lofano, Andrea; Dumbrell, Alex; Gonzalez, Andrew; Bell, Graham

    2015-11-17

    The conditions that allow biodiversity to recover following severe environmental degradation are poorly understood. We studied community rescue, the recovery of a viable community through the evolutionary rescue of many populations within an evolving community, in metacommunities of soil microbes adapting to a herbicide. The metacommunities occupied a landscape of crossed spatial gradients of the herbicide (Dalapon) and a resource (glucose), whereas their constituent communities were either isolated or connected by dispersal. The spread of adapted communities across the landscape and the persistence of communities when that landscape was degraded were strongly promoted by dispersal, and the capacity to adapt to lethal stress was also related to community size and initial diversity. After abrupt and lethal stress, community rescue was most frequent in communities that had previously experienced sublethal levels of stress and had been connected by dispersal. Community rescue occurred through the evolutionary rescue of both initially common taxa, which remained common, and of initially rare taxa, which grew to dominate the evolved community. Community rescue may allow productivity and biodiversity to recover from severe environmental degradation. PMID:26578777

  14. Nonhierarchical Dispersal Promotes Stability and Resilience in a Tritrophic Metacommunity.

    PubMed

    Pedersen, Eric J; Marleau, Justin N; Granados, Monica; Moeller, Holly V; Guichard, Frédéric

    2016-05-01

    Community interactions (e.g., predation, competition) can be characterized by two factors: their strengths and how they are structured between and within species. Both factors play a role in determining community dynamics. In addition to trophic interactions, dispersal acts as an interaction between separate populations. As with other interactions, the structure of dispersal can affect the stability of a system. However, the primary structure that has been studied in consumer-resource models has been hierarchical dispersal, where between-patch dispersal rates increase with trophic level. Here we use analytical, numerical, and simulation approaches on a two-patch, three-species metacommunity model to investigate the relationship between structure and community stability and resilience. We show that metacommunity stability is greater in systems with both weak and strong dispersal rates. Our system is stabilized by the formation of patterns when predators disperse frequently and herbivores disperse rarely, and via asynchrony when both predators and herbivores disperse infrequently. Our results show how interaction strengths within both trophic and spatial networks shape metacommunity stability. PMID:27105000

  15. Food-web complexity, meta-community complexity and community stability.

    PubMed

    Mougi, A; Kondoh, M

    2016-01-01

    What allows interacting, diverse species to coexist in nature has been a central question in ecology, ever since the theoretical prediction that a complex community should be inherently unstable. Although the role of spatiality in species coexistence has been recognized, its application to more complex systems has been less explored. Here, using a meta-community model of food web, we show that meta-community complexity, measured by the number of local food webs and their connectedness, elicits a self-regulating, negative-feedback mechanism and thus stabilizes food-web dynamics. Moreover, the presence of meta-community complexity can give rise to a positive food-web complexity-stability effect. Spatiality may play a more important role in stabilizing dynamics of complex, real food webs than expected from ecological theory based on the models of simpler food webs. PMID:27071716

  16. Food-web complexity, meta-community complexity and community stability

    PubMed Central

    Mougi, A.; Kondoh, M.

    2016-01-01

    What allows interacting, diverse species to coexist in nature has been a central question in ecology, ever since the theoretical prediction that a complex community should be inherently unstable. Although the role of spatiality in species coexistence has been recognized, its application to more complex systems has been less explored. Here, using a meta-community model of food web, we show that meta-community complexity, measured by the number of local food webs and their connectedness, elicits a self-regulating, negative-feedback mechanism and thus stabilizes food-web dynamics. Moreover, the presence of meta-community complexity can give rise to a positive food-web complexity-stability effect. Spatiality may play a more important role in stabilizing dynamics of complex, real food webs than expected from ecological theory based on the models of simpler food webs. PMID:27071716

  17. Effects of Connectivity and Recurrent Local Disturbances on Community Structure and Population Density in Experimental Metacommunities

    PubMed Central

    Carrara, Francesco; Rinaldo, Andrea; Holyoak, Marcel

    2011-01-01

    Metacommunity theory poses that the occurrence and abundance of species is a product of local factors, including disturbance, and regional factors, like dispersal among patches. While metacommunity ideas have been broadly tested there is relatively little work on metacommunities subject to disturbance. We focused on how localized disturbance and dispersal interact to determine species composition in metacommunities. Experiments conducted in simple two-patch habitats containing eight protozoa and rotifer species tested how dispersal altered community composition in both communities that were disturbed and communities that connected to refuge communities not subject to disturbance. While disturbance lowered population densities, in disturbed patches connected to undisturbed patches this was ameliorated by immigration. Furthermore, species with high dispersal abilities or growth rates showed the fastest post-disturbance recovery in presence of immigration. Connectivity helped to counteract the negative effect of disturbances on local populations, allowing mass-effect-driven dispersal of individuals from undisturbed to disturbed patches. In undisturbed patches, however, local population sizes were not significantly reduced by emigration. The absence of a cost of dispersal for undisturbed source populations is consistent with a lack of complex demography in our system, such as age- or sex-specific emigration. Our approach provides an improved way to separate components of population growth from organisms' movement in post-disturbance recovery of (meta)communities. Further studies are required in a variety of ecosystems to investigate the transient dynamics resulting from disturbance and dispersal. PMID:21559336

  18. Beyond metacommunity paradigms: habitat configuration, life history, and movement shape an herbivore community on oak.

    PubMed

    Zheng, Chaozhi; Ovaskainen, Otso; Roslin, Tomas; Tack, Ayco J M

    2015-12-01

    Many empirical studies of metacommunities have focused on the classification of observational patterns into four contrasting paradigms characterized by different levels of movement and habitat heterogeneity. However, deeper insight into the underlying local and regional processes may be derived from a combination of long-term observational data and experimental studies. With the aim of exploring forces structuring the insect metacommunity on oak, we fit a hierarchical Bayesian state-space model to data from observations and experiments. The fitted model reveals large variation in species-specific dispersal abilities and basic reproduction numbers, R0. The residuals from the model show only weak correlations among species, suggesting a lack of strong interspecific interactions. Simulations with model-derived parameter estimates indicate that habitat configuration and species attributes both contribute substantially to structuring insect communities. Overall, our findings demonstrate that community-level variation in movement and life history are key drivers of metacommunity dynamics. PMID:26909424

  19. Confronting the Paradox of Enrichment to the Metacommunity Perspective

    PubMed Central

    Hauzy, Céline; Nadin, Grégoire; Canard, Elsa; Gounand, Isabelle; Mouquet, Nicolas; Ebenman, Bo

    2013-01-01

    Resource enrichment can potentially destabilize predator-prey dynamics. This phenomenon historically referred as the "paradox of enrichment" has mostly been explored in spatially homogenous environments. However, many predator-prey communities exchange organisms within spatially heterogeneous networks called metacommunities. This heterogeneity can result from uneven distribution of resources among communities and thus can lead to the spreading of local enrichment within metacommunities. Here, we adapted the original Rosenzweig-MacArthur predator-prey model, built to study the paradox of enrichment, to investigate the effect of regional enrichment and of its spatial distribution on predator-prey dynamics in metacommunities. We found that the potential for destabilization was depending on the connectivity among communities and the spatial distribution of enrichment. In one hand, we found that at low dispersal regional enrichment led to the destabilization of predator-prey dynamics. This destabilizing effect was more pronounced when the enrichment was uneven among communities. In the other hand, we found that high dispersal could stabilize the predator-prey dynamics when the enrichment was spatially heterogeneous. Our results illustrate that the destabilizing effect of enrichment can be dampened when the spatial scale of resource enrichment is lower than that of organismss movements (heterogeneous enrichment). From a conservation perspective, our results illustrate that spatial heterogeneity could decrease the regional extinction risk of species involved in specialized trophic interactions. From the perspective of biological control, our results show that the heterogeneous distribution of pest resource could favor or dampen outbreaks of pests and of their natural enemies, depending on the spatial scale of heterogeneity. PMID:24358242

  20. Confronting the paradox of enrichment to the metacommunity perspective.

    PubMed

    Hauzy, Céline; Nadin, Grégoire; Canard, Elsa; Gounand, Isabelle; Mouquet, Nicolas; Ebenman, Bo

    2013-01-01

    Resource enrichment can potentially destabilize predator-prey dynamics. This phenomenon historically referred as the "paradox of enrichment" has mostly been explored in spatially homogenous environments. However, many predator-prey communities exchange organisms within spatially heterogeneous networks called metacommunities. This heterogeneity can result from uneven distribution of resources among communities and thus can lead to the spreading of local enrichment within metacommunities. Here, we adapted the original Rosenzweig-MacArthur predator-prey model, built to study the paradox of enrichment, to investigate the effect of regional enrichment and of its spatial distribution on predator-prey dynamics in metacommunities. We found that the potential for destabilization was depending on the connectivity among communities and the spatial distribution of enrichment. In one hand, we found that at low dispersal regional enrichment led to the destabilization of predator-prey dynamics. This destabilizing effect was more pronounced when the enrichment was uneven among communities. In the other hand, we found that high dispersal could stabilize the predator-prey dynamics when the enrichment was spatially heterogeneous. Our results illustrate that the destabilizing effect of enrichment can be dampened when the spatial scale of resource enrichment is lower than that of organismss movements (heterogeneous enrichment). From a conservation perspective, our results illustrate that spatial heterogeneity could decrease the regional extinction risk of species involved in specialized trophic interactions. From the perspective of biological control, our results show that the heterogeneous distribution of pest resource could favor or dampen outbreaks of pests and of their natural enemies, depending on the spatial scale of heterogeneity. PMID:24358242

  1. Onshore–offshore gradient in metacommunity turnover emerges only over macroevolutionary time-scales

    PubMed Central

    Tomašových, Adam; Dominici, Stefano; Zuschin, Martin; Merle, Didier

    2014-01-01

    Invertebrate lineages tend to originate and become extinct at a higher rate in onshore than in offshore habitats over long temporal durations (more than 10 Myr), but it remains unclear whether this pattern scales down to durations of stages (less than 5 Myr) or even sequences (less than 0.5 Myr). We assess whether onshore–offshore gradients in long-term turnover between the tropical Eocene and the warm-temperate Plio-Pleistocene can be extrapolated from gradients in short-term turnover, using abundances of molluscan species from bulk samples in the northeast Atlantic Province. We find that temporal turnover of metacommunities does not significantly decline with depth over short durations (less than 5 Myr), but significantly declines with depth between the Eocene and Plio-Pleistocene (approx. 50 Myr). This decline is determined by a higher onshore extinction of Eocene genera and families, by a higher onshore variability in abundances of genera and families, and by an onshore expansion of genera and families that were frequent offshore in the Eocene. Onshore–offshore decline in turnover thus emerges only over long temporal durations. We suggest that this emergence is triggered by abrupt and spatially extensive climatic or oceanographic perturbations that occurred between the Eocene and Plio-Pleistocene. Plio-Pleistocene metacommunities show a high proportion of bathymetric generalists, in contrast to Eocene metacommunities. Accordingly, the net cooling and weaker thermal gradients may have allowed offshore specialists to expand into onshore habitats and maintain their presence in offshore habitats. PMID:25297863

  2. Complex interactions in metacommunities, with implications for biodiversity and higher levels of selection

    SciTech Connect

    Wilson, D.S. )

    1992-12-01

    Two common features of biological communities are (a) complex interactions among species, which make community dynamics sensitive to initial conditions, and (b) spatial heterogeneity, which fragments large-scale ecological systems into a mosaic of patches, hereafter termed a metacommunity. This computer simulation study examines the effect of complex interactions on the global and local dynamics od metacommunities. Patches are physically identical and differ only in the initial proportion of species that colonize the patches. The random variation is then magnified by deterministic interactions that cause patches to follow different trajectories based on initial conditions. After a period of interaction, individuals from all patches join a global pool of dispersers that colonize a new generation of patches. Complex interactions can have at least two important effects on metacommunity dynamics. First, the number of species coexisting in the metacommunity can greatly exceed the number of species coexisting in any single patch, despite the fact that the patches are physically identical, the species do not differ in colonization ability, and stochastic effects are absent after the colonization stage. Second, complex interactions provide a new source of variation upon which natural selection can operate at the patch level, providing a mechanism for the evolution of functionally organized communities. 59 refs., 11 figs., 2 tabs.

  3. Transitory versus Persistent Effects of Connectivity in Environmentally Homogeneous Metacommunities

    PubMed Central

    Limberger, Romana; Wickham, Stephen A.

    2012-01-01

    While the effect of habitat connectivity on local and regional diversity has been analysed in a number of studies, time-dependent dynamics in metacommunities have received comparatively little consideration. When local patches of a metacommunity are identical in environmental conditions but differ in initial community composition, dispersal among patches may result in homogenization of local communities. In a microcosm experiment with benthic ciliates, we tested the hypothesis that the effect of connectivity on diversity is time-dependent and only transitory, with the degree of connectivity affecting the time to homogenization but not the final outcome. Six microcosms were connected to a metacommunity with one of three levels of connectivity. The six patches differed in initial community composition but were identical in environmental conditions. We found a time-dependent and transitory effect of connectivity on local and regional richness and on local Shannon diversity, while Bray-Curtis dissimilarity and regional Shannon diversity were persistently affected by connectivity. Local richness increased and regional richness decreased with connectivity during the initial phase of the experiment but soon converged to similar values in all three connectivity treatments. Local Shannon diversity was unimodally related to time, with maximum diversity reached sooner with high than with medium or low connectivity. Eventually, however, local diversity converged to similar values irrespective of connectivity. At the regional scale, Shannon diversity was persistently lower with high than with low connectivity. While initial differences in community composition vanished with medium and high connectivity, they were maintained with low connectivity resulting in persistently high beta and regional diversity. The effect of connectivity on ciliate community composition translated down to the algal resource, as stronger dominance of the superior competitor with high and medium

  4. Climate change in metacommunities: dispersal gives double-sided effects on persistence

    PubMed Central

    Eklöf, Anna; Kaneryd, Linda; Münger, Peter

    2012-01-01

    Climate change is increasingly affecting the structure and dynamics of ecological communities both at local and at regional scales, and this can be expected to have important consequences for their robustness and long-term persistence. The aim of the present work is to analyse how the spatial structure of the landscape and dispersal patterns of species (dispersal rate and average dispersal distance) affects metacommunity response to two disturbances: (i) increased mortality during dispersal and (ii) local species extinction. We analyse the disturbances both in isolation and in combination. Using a spatially and dynamically explicit metacommunity model, we find that the effect of dispersal on metacommunity persistence is two-sided: on the one hand, high dispersal significantly reduces the risk of bottom-up extinction cascades following the local removal of a species; on the other hand, when dispersal imposes a risk to the dispersing individuals, high dispersal increases extinction risks, especially when dispersal is global. Large-bodied species with long generation times at the highest trophic level are particularly vulnerable to extinction when dispersal involves a risk. This suggests that decreasing the mortality risk of dispersing individuals by improving the quality of the habitat matrix may greatly increase the robustness of metacommunities. PMID:23007082

  5. Dispersal Ability Determines the Role of Environmental, Spatial and Temporal Drivers of Metacommunity Structure

    PubMed Central

    Padial, André A.; Ceschin, Fernanda; Declerck, Steven A. J.; De Meester, Luc; Bonecker, Cláudia C.; Lansac-Tôha, Fabio A.; Rodrigues, Liliana; Rodrigues, Luzia C.; Train, Sueli; Velho, Luiz F. M.; Bini, Luis M.

    2014-01-01

    Recently, community ecologists are focusing on the relative importance of local environmental factors and proxies to dispersal limitation to explain spatial variation in community structure. Albeit less explored, temporal processes may also be important in explaining species composition variation in metacommunities occupying dynamic systems. We aimed to evaluate the relative role of environmental, spatial and temporal variables on the metacommunity structure of different organism groups in the Upper Paraná River floodplain (Brazil). We used data on macrophytes, fish, benthic macroinvertebrates, zooplankton, periphyton, and phytoplankton collected in up to 36 habitats during a total of eight sampling campaigns over two years. According to variation partitioning results, the importance of predictors varied among biological groups. Spatial predictors were particularly important for organisms with comparatively lower dispersal ability, such as aquatic macrophytes and fish. On the other hand, environmental predictors were particularly important for organisms with high dispersal ability, such as microalgae, indicating the importance of species sorting processes in shaping the community structure of these organisms. The importance of watercourse distances increased when spatial variables were the main predictors of metacommunity structure. The contribution of temporal predictors was low. Our results emphasize the strength of a trait-based analysis and of better defining spatial variables. More importantly, they supported the view that “all-or- nothing” interpretations on the mechanisms structuring metacommunities are rather the exception than the rule. PMID:25340577

  6. Host-parasitoid evolution in a metacommunity.

    PubMed

    Start, Denon; Gilbert, Benjamin

    2016-05-25

    Patch size and isolation are predicted to alter both species diversity and evolution; yet, there are few empirical examples of eco-evolutionary feedback in metacommunities. We tested three hypotheses about eco-evolutionary feedback in a gall-forming fly, Eurosta solidaginis and two of its natural enemies that select for opposite traits: (i) specialization and poor dispersal ability constrain a subset of natural enemies from occupying small and isolated patches, (ii) this constraint alters selection on the gall fly, causing phenotypic shifts towards traits resistant to generalist and dispersive enemies in small and isolated patches, and (iii) reduced dispersal evolves in small, isolated populations. We sampled patches in a natural metacommunity and found support for all hypotheses; Eurosta's specialist wasp parasitoid attacked fewer galls in small and isolated patches, generating a selection gradient that favoured small galls resistant to predation by a dispersive and generalist bird predator. Phenotype distributions matched this selection gradient, and these phenotypic differences were maintained in a common garden experiment. Finally, we found lower dispersal abilities in small and isolated patches, a phenotypic shift that aids in the maintenance of local adaptation. We suggest that the trophic rank and the species traits of consumers are central to evolution in metacommunities. PMID:27194705

  7. Looking for hotspots of marine metacommunity connectivity: a methodological framework.

    PubMed

    Melià, Paco; Schiavina, Marcello; Rossetto, Marisa; Gatto, Marino; Fraschetti, Simonetta; Casagrandi, Renato

    2016-01-01

    Seascape connectivity critically affects the spatiotemporal dynamics of marine metacommunities. Understanding how connectivity patterns emerge from physically and biologically-mediated interactions is therefore crucial to conserve marine ecosystem functions and biodiversity. Here, we develop a set of biophysical models to explore connectivity in assemblages of species belonging to a typical Mediterranean community (Posidonia oceanica meadows) and characterized by different dispersing traits. We propose a novel methodological framework to synthesize species-specific results into a set of community connectivity metrics and show that spatiotemporal variation in magnitude and direction of the connections, as well as interspecific differences in dispersing traits, are key factors structuring community connectivity. We eventually demonstrate how these metrics can be used to characterize the functional role of each marine area in determining patterns of community connectivity at the basin level and to support marine conservation planning. PMID:27029563

  8. Looking for hotspots of marine metacommunity connectivity: a methodological framework

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Melià, Paco; Schiavina, Marcello; Rossetto, Marisa; Gatto, Marino; Fraschetti, Simonetta; Casagrandi, Renato

    2016-03-01

    Seascape connectivity critically affects the spatiotemporal dynamics of marine metacommunities. Understanding how connectivity patterns emerge from physically and biologically-mediated interactions is therefore crucial to conserve marine ecosystem functions and biodiversity. Here, we develop a set of biophysical models to explore connectivity in assemblages of species belonging to a typical Mediterranean community (Posidonia oceanica meadows) and characterized by different dispersing traits. We propose a novel methodological framework to synthesize species-specific results into a set of community connectivity metrics and show that spatiotemporal variation in magnitude and direction of the connections, as well as interspecific differences in dispersing traits, are key factors structuring community connectivity. We eventually demonstrate how these metrics can be used to characterize the functional role of each marine area in determining patterns of community connectivity at the basin level and to support marine conservation planning.

  9. Biodiversity and ecosystem stability across scales in metacommunities.

    PubMed

    Wang, Shaopeng; Loreau, Michel

    2016-05-01

    Although diversity-stability relationships have been extensively studied in local ecosystems, the global biodiversity crisis calls for an improved understanding of these relationships in a spatial context. Here, we use a dynamical model of competitive metacommunities to study the relationships between species diversity and ecosystem variability across scales. We derive analytic relationships under a limiting case; these results are extended to more general cases with numerical simulations. Our model shows that, while alpha diversity decreases local ecosystem variability, beta diversity generally contributes to increasing spatial asynchrony among local ecosystems. Consequently, both alpha and beta diversity provide stabilising effects for regional ecosystems, through local and spatial insurance effects respectively. We further show that at the regional scale, the stabilising effect of biodiversity increases as spatial environmental correlation increases. Our findings have important implications for understanding the interactive effects of global environmental changes (e.g. environmental homogenisation) and biodiversity loss on ecosystem sustainability at large scales. PMID:26918536

  10. Looking for hotspots of marine metacommunity connectivity: a methodological framework

    PubMed Central

    Melià, Paco; Schiavina, Marcello; Rossetto, Marisa; Gatto, Marino; Fraschetti, Simonetta; Casagrandi, Renato

    2016-01-01

    Seascape connectivity critically affects the spatiotemporal dynamics of marine metacommunities. Understanding how connectivity patterns emerge from physically and biologically-mediated interactions is therefore crucial to conserve marine ecosystem functions and biodiversity. Here, we develop a set of biophysical models to explore connectivity in assemblages of species belonging to a typical Mediterranean community (Posidonia oceanica meadows) and characterized by different dispersing traits. We propose a novel methodological framework to synthesize species-specific results into a set of community connectivity metrics and show that spatiotemporal variation in magnitude and direction of the connections, as well as interspecific differences in dispersing traits, are key factors structuring community connectivity. We eventually demonstrate how these metrics can be used to characterize the functional role of each marine area in determining patterns of community connectivity at the basin level and to support marine conservation planning. PMID:27029563

  11. Biodiversity and ecosystem stability across scales in metacommunities

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Shaopeng; Loreau, Michel

    2016-01-01

    Although diversity-stability relationships have been extensively studied in local ecosystems, the global biodiversity crisis calls for an improved understanding of these relationships in a spatial context. Here we use a dynamical model of competitive metacommunities to study the relationships between species diversity and ecosystem variability across scales. We derive analytic relationships under a limiting case; these results are extended to more general cases with numerical simulations. Our model shows that, while alpha diversity decreases local ecosystem variability, beta diversity generally contributes to increasing spatial asynchrony among local ecosystems. Consequently, both alpha and beta diversity provide stabilizing effects for regional ecosystems, through local and spatial insurance effects, respectively. We further show that at the regional scale, the stabilizing effect of biodiversity increases as spatial environmental correlation increases. Our findings have important implications for understanding the interactive effects of global environmental changes (e.g. environmental homogenization) and biodiversity loss on ecosystem sustainability at large scales. PMID:26918536

  12. Predation inhibits the positive effect of dispersal on intraspecific and interspecific synchrony in pond metacommunities.

    PubMed

    Howeth, Jennifer G; Leibold, Mathew A

    2013-10-01

    Recent interest in the ecological drivers of compensatory and synchronous population dynamics has provided an improved yet incomplete understanding of local and regional population oscillations in response to variable environments. Here, we evaluate the effect of dispersal rate and spatiotemporal heterogeneity in predation by the selective planktivore, bluegill sunfish (Lepomis macrochirus), on local and regional dynamics of zooplankton in pond metacommunities. A metacommunity consisted of three pond mesocosm communities, one with constant presence of predators, one without predators, and one with alternating presence-absence of predators. The three communities were connected at either no, low (0.7% per day), or high (20% per day) planktonic dispersal. Results demonstrate that heterogeneous predation (1) prevents spatial synchrony among prey populations across local communities, (2) disrupts the synchronous population dynamics within communities produced by dispersal, and (3) induces local compensatory dynamics between species within communities regardless of dispersal rate. Taken together, the results emphasize that spatiotemporal heterogeneity in selective predation can inhibit both intraspecific and interspecific synchrony in metacommunities. PMID:24358708

  13. Environmental filtering determines metacommunity structure in wetland microcrustaceans.

    PubMed

    Gascón, Stéphanie; Arranz, Ignasi; Cañedo-Argüelles, Miguel; Nebra, Alfonso; Ruhí, Albert; Rieradevall, Maria; Caiola, Nuno; Sala, Jordi; Ibàñez, Carles; Quintana, Xavier D; Boix, Dani

    2016-05-01

    Metacommunity approaches are becoming popular when analyzing factors driving species distribution at the regional scale. However, until the popularization of the variation partitioning technique it was difficult to assess the main drivers of the observed patterns (spatial or environmental). Here we propose a new framework linking the emergence of different metacommunity structures (e.g., nested, Gleasonian, Clementsian) to spatial and environmental filters. This is a novel approach that provides a more profound analysis of how both drivers could lead to similar metacommunity structures. We tested this framework on 110 sites covering a strong environmental gradient (i.e., microcrustacean assemblages organized along a salinity gradient, from freshwater to brackish water wetlands). First we identified the metacommunity structure that better fitted these microcrustacean assemblages. Then, we used hierarchical variation partitioning to quantify the relative influences of environmental filters and the distance among wetlands on the identified structure. Our results showed that under strong environmental filtering metacommunity structures were non-random. We also noted that even passive dispersers, that are supposed to be poorly spatially filtered, showed spatial signals at a large geographical scale. However, some difficulties arose when inferring biotic interactions at finer-scale spatial signals. Overall, our study shows the potential of elements of metacommunity structure combined with variation partition techniques to detect environmental drivers and broadscale patterns of metacommunity structure, and that some caution is needed when interpreting finer-scale spatial signals. PMID:26781303

  14. Do Small Mammals and Vegetation Metacommunity Dynamics Determine the Extent and Pattern of Treeline in the High Elevation Zone of the Sierra Nevada Mountain Range?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Klinger, R. C.; Chase, J. T.

    2014-12-01

    There has been a general expectation that warming temperatures will facilitate transformation of high elevation meadows to woody dominated communities. We have been using observational and experimental approaches to analyze potential state changes of meadows and the role seed and seedling predation play in conifer expansion in the high elevation zone of the Sierra Nevada mountain range of the western United States. The observational component consists of 256 plots spanning 3 degrees of latitude and an elevation range from 3000 m to 4000 m. The experimental component consists of mammal seed predator exclosures (N = 252) allocated among three arrays at each of two sites separated by > 100 km. Three cohorts of seeds at five seed densities (1, 2, 3, 5 and 10 seeds per 0.25 m2) and one seedling cohort were placed within and immediately outside the exclosures at each site. Trend surface and distance decay analyses of community composition indicate vegetation communities in the high elevation zone have not assembled predictably along environmental or spatial gradients. Rather, we have found strong support for neutral dynamics, implying that communities assemble more stochastically as a result of dispersal limitation or priority effects. Density of mature and sapling conifers decrease as a function of distance from conifer patches, but seedling density has no relationship with distance from conifer patches. Germination of seeds outside of the exclosures was 19% compared to 65% within, and these were mainly at densities of 1 seed per 0.25 m2. None of the seeds that germinated outside the exclosures survived more than 1.5 years compared to 23% within the exclosures. Virtually all of the seedlings planted outside the exclosures were removed within a year. Collectively, these findings indicate a highly patchy rather than uniform pattern of treeline extension in the high elevation zone of the Sierra Nevada. Moreover, smaller mammals appear to be playing a critical role in

  15. From species distributions to meta-communities

    PubMed Central

    Thuiller, Wilfried; Pollock, Laura J.; Gueguen, Maya; Münkemüller, Tamara

    2015-01-01

    The extent that biotic interactions and dispersal influence species ranges and diversity patterns across scales remains an open question. Answering this question requires framing an analysis on the frontier between species distribution modeling (SDM), which ignores biotic interactions and dispersal limitation, and community ecology, which provides specific predictions on community and meta-community structure and resulting diversity patterns such as species richness and functional diversity. Using both empirical and simulated datasets, we tested whether predicted occurrences from fine-resolution SDMs provide good estimates of community structure and diversity patterns at resolutions ranging from a resolution typical of studies within reserves (250m) to that typical of a regional biodiversity study (5km). For both datasets, we show that the imprint of biotic interactions and dispersal limitation quickly vanishes when spatial resolution is reduced, which demonstrates the value of SDMs for tracking the imprint of community assembly processes across scales. PMID:26439311

  16. Particle size distribution dynamics during precipitative softening: declining solution composition.

    PubMed

    Nason, Jeffrey A; Lawler, Desmond F

    2009-02-01

    Particle removal is a critical step in the treatment of surface water for potable use, and the majority of drinking water treatment plants employ precipitative coagulation processes such as alum and iron "sweep-floc" coagulation or lime softening for particle pre-treatment. Unfortunately, little is quantitatively known about how particle size distributions are shaped by simultaneous precipitation and flocculation. In an earlier paper, we demonstrated the effects of the saturation ratio, the mixing intensity and the seed concentration on the rates of homogeneous nucleation, precipitative growth and flocculation during precipitation of calcium carbonate at constant solution composition using electronic particle counting techniques. In this work, we extend those findings to systems more closely emulating the conditions in actual softening processes (i.e., declining solution composition). Key findings include the strong dependence of the rate of flocculation on the initial saturation ratio and demonstration of the benefits of seeding precipitative softening from the perspective of optimizing the effluent particle size distribution. The mixing intensity during precipitation was also shown to strongly influence the final particle size distribution. Implications of the findings with respect to softening practice are discussed. PMID:18976791

  17. A Multiscale Approach to Plant Disease Using the Metacommunity Concept.

    PubMed

    Borer, Elizabeth T; Laine, Anna-Liisa; Seabloom, Eric W

    2016-08-01

    Plant disease arises from the interaction of processes occurring at multiple spatial and temporal scales. With new tools such as next-generation sequencing, we are learning about the diversity of microbes circulating within and among plant populations and often coinhabiting host individuals. The proliferation of pathogenic microbes depends on single-species dynamics and multispecies interactions occurring within and among host cells, the spatial organization and genetic landscape of hosts, the frequency and mode of transmission among hosts and host populations, and the abiotic environmental context. Here, we examine empirical evidence from these multiple scales to assess the utility of metacommunity theory, a theoretical framework developed for free-living organisms to further our understanding of and assist in predicting plant-pathogen infection and spread. We suggest that deeper understanding of disease dynamics can arise through the application of this conceptual framework at scales ranging from individual cells to landscapes. In addition, we use this multiscale theoretical perspective to synthesize existing knowledge, generate novel hypotheses, and point toward promising future opportunities for the study of plant pathogens in natural populations. PMID:27296140

  18. Redox-Specialized Bacterioplankton Metacommunity in a Temperate Estuary

    PubMed Central

    Laas, Peeter; Simm, Jaak; Lips, Inga; Lips, Urmas; Kisand, Veljo; Metsis, Madis

    2015-01-01

    This study explored the spatiotemporal dynamics of the bacterioplankton community composition in the Gulf of Finland (easternmost sub-basin of the Baltic Sea) based on phylogenetic analysis of 16S rDNA sequences acquired from community samples via pyrosequencing. Investigations of bacterioplankton in hydrographically complex systems provide good insight into the strategies by which microbes deal with spatiotemporal hydrographic gradients, as demonstrated by our research. Many ribotypes were closely affiliated with sequences isolated from environments with similar steep physiochemical gradients and/or seasonal changes, including seasonally anoxic estuaries. Hence, one of the main conclusions of this study is that marine ecosystems where oxygen and salinity gradients co-occur can be considered a habitat for a cosmopolitan metacommunity consisting of specialized groups occupying niches universal to such environments throughout the world. These niches revolve around functional capabilities to utilize different electron receptors and donors (including trace metal and single carbon compounds). On the other hand, temporal shifts in the bacterioplankton community composition at the surface layer were mainly connected to the seasonal succession of phytoplankton and the inflow of freshwater species. We also conclude that many relatively abundant populations are indigenous and well-established in the area. PMID:25860812

  19. Gastropod diversification and community structuring processes in ancient Lake Ohrid: a metacommunity speciation perspective

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hauffe, T.; Albrecht, C.; Wilke, T.

    2015-09-01

    The Balkan Lake Ohrid is the oldest and most speciose freshwater lacustrine system in Europe. However, it remains unclear whether the diversification of its endemic taxa is mainly driven by neutral processes, environmental factors, or species interactions. This calls for a holistic perspective involving both evolutionary processes and ecological dynamics. Such a unifying framework - the metacommunity speciation model - considers how community assembly affects diversification and vice versa by assessing the relative contribution of the three main community assembly processes, dispersal limitation, environmental filtering, and species interaction. The current study therefore used the species-rich model taxon Gastropoda to assess how extant communities in Lake Ohrid are structured by performing process based metacommunity analyses. Specifically, the study aimed at (i) identifying the relative importance of the three community assembly processes and (ii) to test whether the importance of these individual processes changes gradually with lake depth or whether they are distinctively related to eco-zones. Based on specific simulation steps for each of the three processes, it could be demonstrated that dispersal limitation had the strongest influence on gastropod community structures in Lake Ohrid. However, it was not the exclusive assembly process but acted together with the other two processes - environmental filtering, and species interaction. In fact, the relative importance of the three community assembly processes varied both with lake depth and eco-zones, though the processes were better predicted by the latter. The study thus corroborated the high importance of dispersal limitation for both maintaining species richness in Lake Ohrid (through its impact on community structure) and generating endemic biodiversity (via its influence on diversification processes). However, according to the metacommunity speciation model, the inferred importance of environmental

  20. Reading between the Lines: Metacommunicative Aspects of Online Education.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hatcher, Sherry L.

    Whereas in a traditional university classroom, important features of interpersonal relationships are most readily communicated by body language or tone of voice, in electronically-mediated teaching environments, absent such real time cues, even subtle metacommunications may take on added importance and power. Although a growing number of studies…

  1. Metacommunication, Social Pretend Play and Children with Autism

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Douglas, Susan; Stirling, Lesley

    2012-01-01

    This article investigates processes of engagement in social pretend play between children with autism (age range 3.6 to 7.2 years) and adult play partners, using a large corpus of conversational data. We take a qualitative discourse analytic approach to investigate the metacommunicative strategies used by the children. Our initial framework for…

  2. The Importance of Metacommunication in Supervision Processes in Higher Education

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Baltzersen, Rolf K.

    2013-01-01

    In daily language use, we sometimes comment on the conversation with phrases such as "What do you mean by saying that?" or "That was nice of you to say." This communication about the communication is sometimes labeled as metacommunication. It can be used for many different purposes; for instance, to try and clarify or appraise…

  3. Phatic, Metalingual and Metacommunicative Functions in Discourse: Gambits and Repairs.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Faerch, Claus; Kasper, Gabriele

    The need for an analytical approach to the study of phatic, metalingual, and metacommunicative functions in asymmetrical communicative situations (between native speakers and language learners) is discussed. The study presents theoretical frameworks for gambits and repairs, the linguistic phenomena that primarily serve those functions, and…

  4. A comparative analysis reveals weak relationships between ecological factors and beta diversity of stream insect metacommunities at two spatial levels.

    PubMed

    Heino, Jani; Melo, Adriano S; Bini, Luis Mauricio; Altermatt, Florian; Al-Shami, Salman A; Angeler, David G; Bonada, Núria; Brand, Cecilia; Callisto, Marcos; Cottenie, Karl; Dangles, Olivier; Dudgeon, David; Encalada, Andrea; Göthe, Emma; Grönroos, Mira; Hamada, Neusa; Jacobsen, Dean; Landeiro, Victor L; Ligeiro, Raphael; Martins, Renato T; Miserendino, María Laura; Md Rawi, Che Salmah; Rodrigues, Marciel E; Roque, Fabio de Oliveira; Sandin, Leonard; Schmera, Denes; Sgarbi, Luciano F; Simaika, John P; Siqueira, Tadeu; Thompson, Ross M; Townsend, Colin R

    2015-03-01

    The hypotheses that beta diversity should increase with decreasing latitude and increase with spatial extent of a region have rarely been tested based on a comparative analysis of multiple datasets, and no such study has focused on stream insects. We first assessed how well variability in beta diversity of stream insect metacommunities is predicted by insect group, latitude, spatial extent, altitudinal range, and dataset properties across multiple drainage basins throughout the world. Second, we assessed the relative roles of environmental and spatial factors in driving variation in assemblage composition within each drainage basin. Our analyses were based on a dataset of 95 stream insect metacommunities from 31 drainage basins distributed around the world. We used dissimilarity-based indices to quantify beta diversity for each metacommunity and, subsequently, regressed beta diversity on insect group, latitude, spatial extent, altitudinal range, and dataset properties (e.g., number of sites and percentage of presences). Within each metacommunity, we used a combination of spatial eigenfunction analyses and partial redundancy analysis to partition variation in assemblage structure into environmental, shared, spatial, and unexplained fractions. We found that dataset properties were more important predictors of beta diversity than ecological and geographical factors across multiple drainage basins. In the within-basin analyses, environmental and spatial variables were generally poor predictors of variation in assemblage composition. Our results revealed deviation from general biodiversity patterns because beta diversity did not show the expected decreasing trend with latitude. Our results also call for reconsideration of just how predictable stream assemblages are along ecological gradients, with implications for environmental assessment and conservation decisions. Our findings may also be applicable to other dynamic systems where predictability is low. PMID:25859329

  5. A comparative analysis reveals weak relationships between ecological factors and beta diversity of stream insect metacommunities at two spatial levels

    PubMed Central

    Heino, Jani; Melo, Adriano S; Bini, Luis Mauricio; Altermatt, Florian; Al-Shami, Salman A; Angeler, David G; Bonada, Núria; Brand, Cecilia; Callisto, Marcos; Cottenie, Karl; Dangles, Olivier; Dudgeon, David; Encalada, Andrea; Göthe, Emma; Grönroos, Mira; Hamada, Neusa; Jacobsen, Dean; Landeiro, Victor L; Ligeiro, Raphael; Martins, Renato T; Miserendino, María Laura; Md Rawi, Che Salmah; Rodrigues, Marciel E; Roque, Fabio de Oliveira; Sandin, Leonard; Schmera, Denes; Sgarbi, Luciano F; Simaika, John P; Siqueira, Tadeu; Thompson, Ross M; Townsend, Colin R

    2015-01-01

    The hypotheses that beta diversity should increase with decreasing latitude and increase with spatial extent of a region have rarely been tested based on a comparative analysis of multiple datasets, and no such study has focused on stream insects. We first assessed how well variability in beta diversity of stream insect metacommunities is predicted by insect group, latitude, spatial extent, altitudinal range, and dataset properties across multiple drainage basins throughout the world. Second, we assessed the relative roles of environmental and spatial factors in driving variation in assemblage composition within each drainage basin. Our analyses were based on a dataset of 95 stream insect metacommunities from 31 drainage basins distributed around the world. We used dissimilarity-based indices to quantify beta diversity for each metacommunity and, subsequently, regressed beta diversity on insect group, latitude, spatial extent, altitudinal range, and dataset properties (e.g., number of sites and percentage of presences). Within each metacommunity, we used a combination of spatial eigenfunction analyses and partial redundancy analysis to partition variation in assemblage structure into environmental, shared, spatial, and unexplained fractions. We found that dataset properties were more important predictors of beta diversity than ecological and geographical factors across multiple drainage basins. In the within-basin analyses, environmental and spatial variables were generally poor predictors of variation in assemblage composition. Our results revealed deviation from general biodiversity patterns because beta diversity did not show the expected decreasing trend with latitude. Our results also call for reconsideration of just how predictable stream assemblages are along ecological gradients, with implications for environmental assessment and conservation decisions. Our findings may also be applicable to other dynamic systems where predictability is low. PMID:25859329

  6. Disentangling the drivers of metacommunity structure across spatial scales

    PubMed Central

    Meynard, Christine N.; Lavergne, Sébastien; Boulangeat, Isabelle; Garraud, Luc; Van Es, Jérémie; Mouquet, Nicolas; Thuiller, Wilfried

    2014-01-01

    Aim Metacommunity theories attribute different relative degrees of importance to dispersal, environmental filtering, biotic interactions and stochastic processes in community assembly, but the role of spatial scale remains uncertain. Here we used two complementary statistical tools to test: (1) whether or not the patterns of community structure and environmental influences are consistent across resolutions; and (2) whether and how the joint use of two fundamentally different statistical approaches provides a complementary interpretation of results. Location Grassland plants in the French Alps. Methods We used two approaches across five spatial resolutions (ranging from 1 km × 1 km to 30 km × 30 km): variance partitioning, and analysis of metacommunity structure on the site-by-species incidence matrices. Both methods allow the testing of expected patterns resulting from environmental filtering, but variance partitioning allows the role of dispersal and environmental gradients to be studied, while analysis of the site-by-species metacommunity structure informs an understanding of how environmental filtering occurs and whether or not patterns differ from chance expectation. We also used spatial regressions on species richness to identify relevant environmental factors at each scale and to link results from the two approaches. Results Major environmental drivers of richness included growing degree-days, temperature, moisture and spatial or temporal heterogeneity. Variance partitioning pointed to an increase in the role of dispersal at coarser resolutions, while metacommunity structure analysis pointed to environmental filtering having an important role at all resolutions through a Clementsian assembly process (i.e. groups of species having similar range boundaries and co-occurring in similar environments). Main conclusions The combination of methods used here allows a better understanding of the forces structuring ecological communities than either one of them used

  7. Dendritic connectivity controls biodiversity patterns in experimental metacommunities

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Carrara, F.; Altermatt, F.; Rodriguez-Iturbe, I.; Rinaldo, A.

    2012-04-01

    Biological communities often occur in spatially structured habitats where connectivity directly affects dispersal and metacommunity processes. Many highly diverse landscapes exhibit hierarchical spatial structures that are shaped by geomorphological processes and riverine ecosystems, among the most diverse habitats on earth, represent an outstanding example of such mechanisms. Recent theoretical work suggests that dispersal constrained by the connectivity of specific habitat structures, such as dendrites like river networks, can explain observed features of biodiversity, but direct evidence is still lacking. Furthermore, in many environments intrinsic disturbance events contribute to spatio-temporal heterogeneity. Previous microbial experiments found that spatio-temporal heterogeneity among local communities induced by disturbance and dispersal events have a strong influence on species coexistence and biodiversity. These factors, directly affecting the history of community assembly, introduce variability in community composition in term of abundances and local species richness. We investigate the effects of directional dispersal imposed by the habitat-network structure on the biodiversity of metacommunities by conducting a laboratory experiment using aquatic microcosms. Experiments were conducted in 36-well culture plates, thus imposing by construction a metacommunity structure: each well hosted a local community within the whole landscape and dispersal occurred by periodic transfer of culture medium among connected local communities, following two different geometries. Disturbance consisted of medium replacement and reflects the spatial environmental heterogeneity inherent to many natural systems. We compared spatially heterogeneous metacommunities following a river network geometry, with spatially homogeneous metacommunities, in which every local community has 2D lattice four nearest neighbors. Local dispersal in isotropic lattice landscapes homogenizes local

  8. Polar bear population dynamics in the southern Beaufort Sea during a period of sea ice decline.

    PubMed

    Bromaghin, Jeffrey F; Mcdonald, Trent L; Stirling, Ian; Derocher, Andrew E; Richardson, Evan S; Regehr, Eric V; Douglas, David C; Durner, George M; Atwood, Todd; Amstrup, Steven C

    2015-04-01

    In the southern Beaufort Sea of the United States and Canada, prior investigations have linked declines in summer sea ice to reduced physical condition, growth, and survival of polar bears (Ursus maritimus). Combined with projections of population decline due to continued climate warming and the ensuing loss of sea ice habitat, those findings contributed to the 2008 decision to list the species as threatened under the U.S. Endangered Species Act. Here, we used mark-recapture models to investigate the population dynamics of polar bears in the southern Beaufort Sea from 2001 to 2010, years during which the spatial and temporal extent of summer sea ice generally declined. Low survival from 2004 through 2006 led to a 25-50% decline in abundance. We hypothesize that low survival during this period resulted from (1) unfavorable ice conditions that limited access to prey during multiple seasons; and possibly, (2) low prey abundance. For reasons that are not clear, survival of adults and cubs began to improve in 2007 and abundance was comparatively stable from 2008 to 2010, with ~900 bears in 2010 (90% CI 606-1212). However, survival of subadult bears declined throughout the entire period. Reduced spatial and temporal availability of sea ice is expected to increasingly force population dynamics of polar bears as the climate continues to warm. However, in the short term, our findings suggest that factors other than sea ice can influence survival. A refined understanding of the ecological mechanisms underlying polar bear population dynamics is necessary to improve projections of their future status and facilitate development of management strategies. PMID:26214910

  9. Polar bear population dynamics in the southern Beaufort Sea during a period of sea ice decline

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Bromaghin, Jeffrey F.; McDonald, Trent L.; Stirling, Ian; Derocher, Andrew E.; Richardson, Evan S.; Regehr, Eric V.; Douglas, David C.; Durner, George M.; Atwood, Todd C.; Amstrup, Steven C.

    2015-01-01

    In the southern Beaufort Sea of the United States and Canada, prior investigations have linked declines in summer sea ice to reduced physical condition, growth, and survival of polar bears (Ursus maritimus). Combined with projections of population decline due to continued climate warming and the ensuing loss of sea ice habitat, those findings contributed to the 2008 decision to list the species as threatened under the U.S. Endangered Species Act. Here, we used mark–recapture models to investigate the population dynamics of polar bears in the southern Beaufort Sea from 2001 to 2010, years during which the spatial and temporal extent of summer sea ice generally declined. Low survival from 2004 through 2006 led to a 25–50% decline in abundance. We hypothesize that low survival during this period resulted from (1) unfavorable ice conditions that limited access to prey during multiple seasons; and possibly, (2) low prey abundance. For reasons that are not clear, survival of adults and cubs began to improve in 2007 and abundance was comparatively stable from 2008 to 2010, with ~900 bears in 2010 (90% CI 606–1212). However, survival of subadult bears declined throughout the entire period. Reduced spatial and temporal availability of sea ice is expected to increasingly force population dynamics of polar bears as the climate continues to warm. However, in the short term, our findings suggest that factors other than sea ice can influence survival. A refined understanding of the ecological mechanisms underlying polar bear population dynamics is necessary to improve projections of their future status and facilitate development of management strategies.

  10. Dendritic connectivity controls biodiversity patterns in experimental metacommunities

    PubMed Central

    Carrara, Francesco; Altermatt, Florian; Rodriguez-Iturbe, Ignacio; Rinaldo, Andrea

    2012-01-01

    Biological communities often occur in spatially structured habitats where connectivity directly affects dispersal and metacommunity processes. Recent theoretical work suggests that dispersal constrained by the connectivity of specific habitat structures, such as dendrites like river networks, can explain observed features of biodiversity, but direct evidence is still lacking. We experimentally show that connectivity per se shapes diversity patterns in microcosm metacommunities at different levels. Local dispersal in isotropic lattice landscapes homogenizes local species richness and leads to pronounced spatial persistence. On the contrary, dispersal along dendritic landscapes leads to higher variability in local diversity and among-community composition. Although headwaters exhibit relatively lower species richness, they are crucial for the maintenance of regional biodiversity. Our results establish that spatially constrained dendritic connectivity is a key factor for community composition and population persistence. PMID:22460788

  11. Shared parasitoids in a metacommunity: indirect interactions inhibit herbivore membership in local communities.

    PubMed

    Cronin, James T

    2007-12-01

    The interaction between species, mediated by a shared natural enemy (i.e., apparent competition), has been the subject of much theoretical and empirical investigation. However, we lack field experiments that assess the importance of apparent competition to metacommunity structure. Here, I conducted a series of field experiments to test whether apparent competition, mediated by shared egg parasitoids (Anagrus nigriventris and A. columbi), occurs between two abundant planthopper species (Delphacodes scolochloa and Prokelisia crocea) of the North American Great Plains. The two planthoppers feed on different plant species within prairie potholes (wet depressions) and, thus, do not interact directly. At the scale of individual potholes, a five-fold pulse increase in D. scolochloa density (relative to control potholes) resulted in a steady decline in P. crocea density over two generations. As expected in cases of apparent competition, P. crocea eggs in these potholes suffered twice the level of parasitism as P. crocea eggs in control potholes. In contrast, a sixfold increase in P. crocea density had no effect on D. scolochloa density or parasitism in those potholes. The superiority of D. scolochloa over P. crocea likely can be attributed to a larger source population size, greater amount of host habitat, and/or the presence of a phenological refuge from parasitism for D. scolochloa. In another experiment, in which small populations of P. crocea were established either in close proximity to D. scolochloa or in isolation, I found that the likelihood of P. crocea persistence was 36% lower in the former than the latter populations. This difference was attributable to very high rates of parasitism of P. crocea when adjacent to D. scolochloa. These two experiments provide clear evidence that the two planthopper species engage in apparent competition and that the shared parasitoids may play a significant role in limiting membership in a local community. Based on these findings

  12. Habitat dynamics, marine reserve status, and the decline and recovery of coral reef fish communities.

    PubMed

    Williamson, David H; Ceccarelli, Daniela M; Evans, Richard D; Jones, Geoffrey P; Russ, Garry R

    2014-02-01

    Severe climatic disturbance events often have major impacts on coral reef communities, generating cycles of decline and recovery, and in some extreme cases, community-level phase shifts from coral-to algal-dominated states. Benthic habitat changes directly affect reef fish communities, with low coral cover usually associated with low fish diversity and abundance. No-take marine reserves (NTRs) are widely advocated for conserving biodiversity and enhancing the sustainability of exploited fish populations. Numerous studies have documented positive ecological and socio-economic benefits of NTRs; however, the ability of NTRs to ameliorate the effects of acute disturbances on coral reefs has seldom been investigated. Here, we test these factors by tracking the dynamics of benthic and fish communities, including the important fishery species, coral trout (Plectropomus spp.), over 8 years in both NTRs and fished areas in the Keppel Island group, Great Barrier Reef, Australia. Two major disturbances impacted the reefs during the monitoring period, a coral bleaching event in 2006 and a freshwater flood plume in 2011. Both disturbances generated significant declines in coral cover and habitat complexity, with subsequent declines in fish abundance and diversity, and pronounced shifts in fish assemblage structure. Coral trout density also declined in response to the loss of live coral, however, the approximately 2:1 density ratio between NTRs and fished zones was maintained over time. The only post-disturbance refuges for coral trout spawning stocks were within the NTRs that escaped the worst effects of the disturbances. Although NTRs had little discernible effect on the temporal dynamics of benthic or fish communities, it was evident that the post-disturbance refuges for coral trout spawning stocks within some NTRs may be critically important to regional-scale population persistence and recovery. PMID:24634720

  13. Habitat dynamics, marine reserve status, and the decline and recovery of coral reef fish communities

    PubMed Central

    Williamson, David H; Ceccarelli, Daniela M; Evans, Richard D; Jones, Geoffrey P; Russ, Garry R

    2014-01-01

    Severe climatic disturbance events often have major impacts on coral reef communities, generating cycles of decline and recovery, and in some extreme cases, community-level phase shifts from coral-to algal-dominated states. Benthic habitat changes directly affect reef fish communities, with low coral cover usually associated with low fish diversity and abundance. No-take marine reserves (NTRs) are widely advocated for conserving biodiversity and enhancing the sustainability of exploited fish populations. Numerous studies have documented positive ecological and socio-economic benefits of NTRs; however, the ability of NTRs to ameliorate the effects of acute disturbances on coral reefs has seldom been investigated. Here, we test these factors by tracking the dynamics of benthic and fish communities, including the important fishery species, coral trout (Plectropomus spp.), over 8 years in both NTRs and fished areas in the Keppel Island group, Great Barrier Reef, Australia. Two major disturbances impacted the reefs during the monitoring period, a coral bleaching event in 2006 and a freshwater flood plume in 2011. Both disturbances generated significant declines in coral cover and habitat complexity, with subsequent declines in fish abundance and diversity, and pronounced shifts in fish assemblage structure. Coral trout density also declined in response to the loss of live coral, however, the approximately 2:1 density ratio between NTRs and fished zones was maintained over time. The only post-disturbance refuges for coral trout spawning stocks were within the NTRs that escaped the worst effects of the disturbances. Although NTRs had little discernible effect on the temporal dynamics of benthic or fish communities, it was evident that the post-disturbance refuges for coral trout spawning stocks within some NTRs may be critically important to regional-scale population persistence and recovery. PMID:24634720

  14. Hierarchical drivers of reef-fish metacommunity structure.

    PubMed

    MacNeil, M Aaron; Graham, Nicholas A J; Polunin, Nicholas V C; Kulbicki, Michel; Galzin, René; Harmelin-Vivien, Mireille; Rushton, Steven P

    2009-01-01

    Coral reefs are highly complex ecological systems, where multiple processes interact across scales in space and time to create assemblages of exceptionally high biodiversity. Despite the increasing frequency of hierarchically structured sampling programs used in coral-reef science, little progress has been made in quantifying the relative importance of processes operating across multiple scales. The vast majority of reef studies are conducted, or at least analyzed, at a single spatial scale, ignoring the implicitly hierarchical structure of the overall system in favor of small-scale experiments or large-scale observations. Here we demonstrate how alpha (mean local number of species), beta diversity (degree of species dissimilarity among local sites), and gamma diversity (overall species richness) vary with spatial scale, and using a hierarchical, information-theoretic approach, we evaluate the relative importance of site-, reef-, and atoll-level processes driving the fish metacommunity structure among 10 atolls in French Polynesia. Process-based models, representing well-established hypotheses about drivers of reef-fish community structure, were assembled into a candidate set of 12 hierarchical linear models. Variation in fish abundance, biomass, and species richness were unevenly distributed among transect, reef, and atoll levels, establishing the relative contribution of variation at these spatial scales to the structure of the metacommunity. Reef-fish biomass, species richness, and the abundance of most functional-groups corresponded primarily with transect-level habitat diversity and atoll-lagoon size, whereas detritivore and grazer abundances were largely correlated with potential covariates of larval dispersal. Our findings show that (1) within-transect and among-atoll factors primarily drive the relationship between alpha and gamma diversity in this reef-fish metacommunity; (2) habitat is the primary correlate with reef-fish metacommunity structure at

  15. Metacommunity versus Biogeography: A Case Study of Two Groups of Neotropical Vegetation-Dwelling Arthropods

    PubMed Central

    Gonçalves-Souza, Thiago; Romero, Gustavo Q.; Cottenie, Karl

    2014-01-01

    Biogeography and metacommunity ecology provide two different perspectives on species diversity. Both are spatial in nature but their spatial scales do not necessarily match. With recent boom of metacommunity studies, we see an increasing need for clear discrimination of spatial scales relevant for both perspectives. This discrimination is a necessary prerequisite for improved understanding of ecological phenomena across scales. Here we provide a case study to illustrate some spatial scale-dependent concepts in recent metacommunity studies and identify potential pitfalls. We presented here the diversity patterns of Neotropical lepidopterans and spiders viewed both from metacommunity and biogeographical perspectives. Specifically, we investigated how the relative importance of niche- and dispersal-based processes for community assembly change at two spatial scales: metacommunity scale, i.e. within a locality, and biogeographical scale, i.e. among localities widely scattered along a macroclimatic gradient. As expected, niche-based processes dominated the community assembly at metacommunity scale, while dispersal-based processes played a major role at biogeographical scale for both taxonomical groups. However, we also observed small but significant spatial effects at metacommunity scale and environmental effects at biogeographical scale. We also observed differences in diversity patterns between the two taxonomical groups corresponding to differences in their dispersal modes. Our results thus support the idea of continuity of processes interactively shaping diversity patterns across scales and emphasize the necessity of integration of metacommunity and biogeographical perspectives. PMID:25549332

  16. Strong Spatial Influence on Colonization Rates in a Pioneer Zooplankton Metacommunity

    PubMed Central

    Frisch, Dagmar; Cottenie, Karl; Badosa, Anna; Green, Andy J.

    2012-01-01

    The magnitude of community-wide dispersal is central to metacommunity models, yet dispersal is notoriously difficult to quantify in passive and cryptic dispersers such as many freshwater invertebrates. By overcoming the problem of quantifying dispersal rates, colonization rates into new habitats can provide a useful estimate of the magnitude of effective dispersal. Here we study the influence of spatial and local processes on colonization rates into new ponds that indicate differential dispersal limitation of major zooplankton taxa, with important implications for metacommunity dynamics. We identify regional and local factors that affect zooplankton colonization rates and spatial patterns in a large-scale experimental system. Our study differs from others in the unique setup of the experimental pond area by which we were able to test spatial and environmental variables at a large spatial scale. We quantified colonization rates separately for the Copepoda, Cladocera and Rotifera from samples collected over a period of 21 months in 48 newly constructed temporary ponds of 0.18–2.95 ha distributed in a restored wetland area of 2,700 ha in Doñana National Park, Southern Spain. Species richness upon initial sampling of new ponds was about one third of that in reference ponds, although the rate of detection of new species from thereon were not significantly different, probably owing to high turnover in the dynamic, temporary reference ponds. Environmental heterogeneity had no detectable effect on colonization rates in new ponds. In contrast, connectivity, space (based on latitude and longitude) and surface area were key determinants of colonization rates for copepods and cladocerans. This suggests dispersal limitation in cladocerans and copepods, but not in rotifers, possibly due to differences in propagule size and abundance. PMID:22792241

  17. A Neighborhood Analysis of the Consequences of Quercus suber Decline for Regeneration Dynamics in Mediterranean Forests

    PubMed Central

    Ibáñez, Beatriz; Gómez-Aparicio, Lorena; Stoll, Peter; Ávila, José M.; Pérez-Ramos, Ignacio M.; Marañón, Teodoro

    2015-01-01

    In forests, the vulnerable seedling stage is largely influenced by the canopy, which modifies the surrounding environment. Consequently, any alteration in the characteristics of the canopy, such as those promoted by forest dieback, might impact regeneration dynamics. Our work analyzes the interaction between canopy neighbors and seedlings in Mediterranean forests affected by the decline of their dominant species (Quercus suber). Our objective was to understand how the impacts of neighbor trees and shrubs on recruitment could affect future dynamics of these declining forests. Seeds of the three dominant tree species (Quercus suber, Olea europaea and Quercus canariensis) were sown in six sites during two consecutive years. Using a spatially-explicit, neighborhood approach we developed models that explained the observed spatial variation in seedling emergence, survival, growth and photochemical efficiency as a function of the size, identity, health, abundance and distribution of adult trees and shrubs in the neighborhood. We found strong neighborhood effects for all the performance estimators, particularly seedling emergence and survival. Tree neighbors positively affected emergence, independently of species identity or health. Alternatively, seedling survival was much lower in neighborhoods dominated by defoliated and dead Q. suber trees than in neighborhoods dominated by healthy trees. For the two oak species, these negative effects were consistent over the three years of the experimental seedlings. These results indicate that ongoing changes in species’ relative abundance and canopy trees’ health might alter the successional trajectories of Mediterranean oak-forests through neighbor-specific impacts on seedlings. The recruitment failure of dominant late-successional oaks in the gaps opened after Q. suber death would indirectly favor the establishment of other coexisting woody species, such as drought-tolerant shrubs. This could lead current forests to shift

  18. Assembly processes of gastropod community change with horizontal and vertical zonation in ancient Lake Ohrid: a metacommunity speciation perspective

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hauffe, Torsten; Albrecht, Christian; Wilke, Thomas

    2016-05-01

    The Balkan Lake Ohrid is the oldest and most diverse freshwater lacustrine system in Europe. However, it remains unclear whether species community composition, as well as the diversification of its endemic taxa, is mainly driven by dispersal limitation, environmental filtering, or species interaction. This calls for a holistic perspective involving both evolutionary processes and ecological dynamics, as provided by the unifying framework of the "metacommunity speciation model".The current study used the species-rich model taxon Gastropoda to assess how extant communities in Lake Ohrid are structured by performing process-based metacommunity analyses. Specifically, the study aimed (1) to identifying the relative importance of the three community assembly processes and (2) to test whether the importance of these individual processes changes gradually with lake depth or discontinuously with eco-zone shifts.Based on automated eco-zone detection and process-specific simulation steps, we demonstrated that dispersal limitation had the strongest influence on gastropod community composition. However, it was not the exclusive assembly process, but acted together with the other two processes - environmental filtering and species interaction. The relative importance of the community assembly processes varied both with lake depth and eco-zones, though the processes were better predicted by the latter.This suggests that environmental characteristics have a pronounced effect on shaping gastropod communities via assembly processes. Moreover, the study corroborated the high importance of dispersal limitation for both maintaining species richness in Lake Ohrid (through its impact on community composition) and generating endemic biodiversity (via its influence on diversification processes). However, according to the metacommunity speciation model, the inferred importance of environmental filtering and biotic interaction also suggests a small but significant influence of ecological

  19. Habitat destruction and metacommunity size in pen shell communities.

    PubMed

    Munguia, Pablo; Miller, Thomas E

    2008-11-01

    1. In spatially structured communities, habitat destruction can have two effects: first, a main effect that occurs because of the loss of habitat area within a larger region, and a secondary effect due to changes in the spatial arrangement of local communities. Changes to the spatial arrangement can, in turn, affect the migration and extinction rates within local communities. 2. Our study involved the experimental destruction of entire local communities within larger regions in natural marine microcosms. Large and small arrays of dead pen shells were created in a shallow bay in north Florida, and the colonization by both encrusting and motile species on this empty substrate were followed through time. After most species had become established, half of the large arrays were perturbed to create small arrays by removal of half the shells, simulating habitat destruction. 3. After 48 days of further community development, comparisons of the large arrays, reduced arrays and original small arrays suggested that the mechanisms by which habitat destruction affects diversity could depend upon the size of the region affected and the natural history of the species being studied. 4. Habitat destruction reduced the diversity of motile species to a level lower than that found in the undisturbed small arrays, suggesting that the species that assembled in the original large metacommunities negatively influenced the species that occurred ultimately in the converted small arrays. 5. With sessile species, habitat destruction created richness levels that were intermediate to those of small and large arrays. The initial predestruction richness appears to have had a positive effect; because sessile species cannot disperse as adults, they may not respond to significant shifts in metacommunity size later in succession. Initial metacommunity size may be important for allowing individuals to select appropriate habitats before they settle. PMID:18637972

  20. A Plausible Explanation for the Steep Redshift Decline in Barred Spirals: Dynamically Hot Disks

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sheth, Kartik; Melbourne, J.; Kassin, S.; Elmegreen, D. M.; Elmegreen, B. G.; Athanassoula, E.; Abraham, R. G.; Ellis, R. S.; Weiner, B.

    2012-05-01

    We present the first observational evidence for the inhibition of bar formation in dispersion dominated (dynamically hot) galaxies. We compare the presence of galactic structures (bars) and the host galaxy kinematics in a sample of 200 disk galaxies from the All-Wavelength Extended Groth Strip International Survey (AEGIS) and the Deep Extragalactic Evolutionary Probe 2 (DEEP2) survey. We find that bars are preferentially found in galaxies that lie on the Tully-Fisher relationship and are rotation-dominated, whereas few bars are found in galaxies that are dispersion dominated. The data provide at least one explanation for the steep (x3) decline in the bar fraction from z=0 to z=0.84 previously observed in L* disk galaxies in the COSMOS field. In the COSMOS data, the decline in bars is primarily found in the low mass, late-type systems. A proposed explanation for the trend was that at higher redshifts, lower mass systems were more dispersion dominated because they were more easily harassed by the increased interaction and merger rate. The data presented here provides observational support for this hypothesis.

  1. Infection dynamics in frog populations with different histories of decline caused by a deadly disease.

    PubMed

    Sapsford, Sarah J; Voordouw, Maarten J; Alford, Ross A; Schwarzkopf, Lin

    2015-12-01

    Pathogens can drive host population dynamics. Chytridiomycosis is a fungal disease of amphibians that is caused by the fungus Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis (Bd). This pathogen has caused declines and extinctions in some host species whereas other host species coexist with Bd without suffering declines. In the early 1990s, Bd extirpated populations of the endangered common mistfrog, Litoria rheocola, at high-elevation sites, while populations of the species persisted at low-elevation sites. Today, populations have reappeared at many high-elevation sites where they presently co-exist with the fungus. We conducted a capture-mark-recapture (CMR) study of six populations of L. rheocola over 1 year, at high and low elevations. We used multistate CMR models to determine which factors (Bd infection status, site type, and season) influenced rates of frog survival, recapture, infection, and recovery from infection. We observed Bd-induced mortality of individual frogs, but did not find any significant effect of Bd infection on the survival rate of L. rheocola at the population level. Survival and recapture rates depended on site type and season. Infection rate was highest in winter when temperatures were favourable for pathogen growth, and differed among site types. The recovery rate was high (75.7-85.8%) across seasons, and did not differ among site types. The coexistence of L. rheocola with Bd suggests that (1) frog populations are becoming resistant to the fungus, (2) Bd may have evolved lower virulence, or (3) current environmental conditions may be inhibiting outbreaks of the fatal disease. PMID:26293680

  2. Effects of forest canopy on habitat selection in treefrogs and aquatic insects: implications for communities and metacommunities.

    PubMed

    Binckley, Christopher A; Resetarits, William J

    2007-10-01

    The specific dispersal/colonization strategies used by species to locate and colonize habitat patches can strongly influence both community and metacommunity structure. Habitat selection theory predicts nonrandom dispersal to and colonization of habitat patches based on their quality. We tested whether habitat selection was capable of generating patterns of diversity and abundance across a transition of canopy coverage (open and closed canopy) and nutrient addition by investigating oviposition site choice in two treefrog species (Hyla) and an aquatic beetle (Tropisternus lateralis), and the colonization dynamics of a diverse assemblage of aquatic insects (primarily beetles). Canopy cover produced dramatic patterns of presence/absence, abundance, and species richness, as open canopy ponds received 99.5% of propagules and 94.6% of adult insect colonists. Nutrient addition affected only Tropisternus oviposition, as females oviposited more egg cases at higher nutrient levels, but only in open canopy ponds. The behavioral partitioning of aquatic landscapes into suitable and unsuitable habitats via habitat selection behavior fundamentally alters how communities within larger ecological landscapes (metacommunities) are linked by dispersal and colonization. PMID:17622564

  3. Using multispecies occupancy models to improve the characterization and understanding of metacommunity structure.

    PubMed

    Mihaljevic, Joseph R; Joseph, Maxwell B; Johnson, Pieter T J

    2015-07-01

    Two of the most prominent frameworks to develop in ecology over the past decade are metacommunity ecology, which seeks to characterize multispecies distributions across space, and occupancy modeling, which corrects for imperfect detection in an effort to better understand species occurrence patterns. Although their goals are complementary, metacommunity theory and statistical occupancy modeling methods have developed independently. For instance, the elements of metacommunity structure (EMS) framework uses species occurrence data to classify metacommunity structure and link it to underlying environmental gradients. While the efficacy of this approach relies on the quality of the data, few studies have considered how imperfect detection, which is widespread in ecological surveys and the major focus of occupancy modeling, affects the outcome. We introduce a framework that integrates multispecies occupancy models with the current EMS framework, detection error-corrected EMS (DECEMS). This method offers two distinct advantages. First, DECEMS reduces bias in characterizing metacommunity structure by using repeated surveys and occupancy models to disentangle species-specific occupancy and detection probabilities, ultimately bringing metacommunity structure classification into a more probabilistic framework. Second, occupancy modeling allows estimation of species-specific responses to environmental covariates, which will increase our ability to link species-level effects to metacommunity-wide patterns. After reviewing the EMS framework, we introduce a simple multispecies occupancy model and show how DECEMS can work in practice, highlighting that detection error often causes EMS to assign incorrect structures. To emphasize the broader applicability of this approach, we further illustrate that DECEMS can reduce the rate of structure misclassification by more than 20% in some cases, even proving useful when detection error rates are quite low (-10%). Integrating occupancy

  4. [Residue decline dynamics and safety utilization of carbendazim in cultivation of Anoectochilus roxburghii].

    PubMed

    Shao, Qing-Song; Liu, Hong-Bo; Zhang, Yu-Yun; Zhang, Ai-Lian; Li, Ming-Yan

    2014-05-01

    The paper aimed to study the residue decline dynamic and standards for safety utilization of carbendazim in roots, stems, leaves of Anoectochilus roxburghii and in growth media. Samples extracted with methanol were purified by liquid-liquid extraction and analysed by HPLC. The results showed that average rate of recovery was 82.9% - 95.7% and RSD were 2.0% - 6.3% with add of carbendazim in respectively diverse concentration, which meets inspection requirement of pesticide residue. Two kinds of dosages of carbendazim were treated, varying from recommended dosage (1.0 kg x hm(-2)) to 1.5 times recommended dosage (1.5 kg x hm(-2)). Results of two years test showed that the half-life period of carbendazim were 7.01 - 8.51 d in the growth media of A. roxburghii, 3.58 - 4.27 d in stems and 3.50 - 3.91 d in leaves, 4.93 - 5.71 d in roots. Providing max recommended residue of carbendazim in the cultivation of A. roxburghii is 0.5 mg x kg(-1), sprayed 4 times a year with the dosage of 1.0 kg x hm(-2), 28 days is proposed for the safety interval of the last pesticide application's and harvest's date. PMID:25095360

  5. Flow directionality, mountain barriers and functional traits determine diatom metacommunity structuring of high mountain streams

    PubMed Central

    Dong, Xiaoyu; Li, Bin; He, Fengzhi; Gu, Yuan; Sun, Meiqin; Zhang, Haomiao; Tan, Lu; Xiao, Wen; Liu, Shuoran; Cai, Qinghua

    2016-01-01

    Stream metacommunities are structured by a combination of local (environmental filtering) and regional (dispersal) processes. The unique characters of high mountain streams could potentially determine metacommunity structuring, which is currently poorly understood. Aiming at understanding how these characters influenced metacommunity structuring, we explored the relative importance of local environmental conditions and various dispersal processes, including through geographical (overland), topographical (across mountain barriers) and network (along flow direction) pathways in shaping benthic diatom communities. From a trait perspective, diatoms were categorized into high-profile, low-profile and motile guild to examine the roles of functional traits. Our results indicated that both environmental filtering and dispersal processes influenced metacommunity structuring, with dispersal contributing more than environmental processes. Among the three pathways, stream corridors were primary pathway. Deconstructive analysis suggested different responses to environmental and spatial factors for each of three ecological guilds. However, regardless of traits, dispersal among streams was limited by mountain barriers, while dispersal along stream was promoted by rushing flow in high mountain stream. Our results highlighted that directional processes had prevailing effects on metacommunity structuring in high mountain streams. Flow directionality, mountain barriers and ecological guilds contributed to a better understanding of the roles that mountains played in structuring metacommunity. PMID:27090223

  6. (Meta)communication strategies in inclusive classes for deaf students.

    PubMed

    Kelman, Celeste Azulay; Branco, Angela Uchôa

    2009-01-01

    How can an inclusive classroom for deaf students be successful? The use of metacommunication strategies by teachers and hearing peers seems promising. Schools that promote this approach tend to improve deaf students' psychosocial development and academic achievement. However, this is not a general rule. The present study identifies the elements of success, with the investigators basing their analysis on extensive observation of 4 bilingual classes conducted by regular education and specialized teachers. The study was conducted in 3 public elementary schools in Brasilia, Brazil. Data were collected through direct observation (156 hours) and video recording (34 hours). Results were qualitatively analyzed from a microgenetic perspective. The investigators devised 14 categories of social interaction, e.g., visual contact and responsivity, multimodal communication, co-construction of meanings, flexible use of space, and sign language instruction for hearing students. PMID:20066919

  7. Hydrology Affects Environmental and Spatial Structuring of Microalgal Metacommunities in Tropical Pacific Coast Wetlands

    PubMed Central

    Rojo, Carmen; Mesquita-Joanes, Francesc; Monrós, Juan S.; Armengol, Javier; Sasa, Mahmood; Bonilla, Fabián; Rueda, Ricardo; Benavent-Corai, José; Piculo, Rubén; Segura, M. Matilde

    2016-01-01

    The alternating climate between wet and dry periods has important effects on the hydrology and therefore on niche-based processes of water bodies in tropical areas. Additionally, assemblages of microorganism can show spatial patterns, in the form of a distance decay relationship due to their size or life form. We aimed to test spatial and environmental effects, modulated by a seasonal flooding climatic pattern, on the distribution of microalgae in 30 wetlands of a tropical dry forest region: the Pacific coast of Costa Rica and Nicaragua. Three surveys were conducted corresponding to the beginning, the highest peak, and the end of the hydrological year during the wet season, and species abundance and composition of planktonic and benthic microalgae was determined. Variation partitioning analysis (as explained by spatial distance or environmental factors) was applied to each seasonal dataset by means of partial redundancy analysis. Our results show that microalgal assemblages were structured by spatial and environmental factors depending on the hydrological period of the year. At the onset of hydroperiod and during flooding, neutral effects dominated community dynamics, but niche-based local effects resulted in more structured algal communities at the final periods of desiccating water bodies. Results suggest that climate-mediated effects on hydrology can influence the relative role of spatial and environmental factors on metacommunities of microalgae. Such variability needs to be accounted in order to describe accurately community dynamics in tropical coastal wetlands. PMID:26900916

  8. Hydrology Affects Environmental and Spatial Structuring of Microalgal Metacommunities in Tropical Pacific Coast Wetlands.

    PubMed

    Rojo, Carmen; Mesquita-Joanes, Francesc; Monrós, Juan S; Armengol, Javier; Sasa, Mahmood; Bonilla, Fabián; Rueda, Ricardo; Benavent-Corai, José; Piculo, Rubén; Segura, M Matilde

    2016-01-01

    The alternating climate between wet and dry periods has important effects on the hydrology and therefore on niche-based processes of water bodies in tropical areas. Additionally, assemblages of microorganism can show spatial patterns, in the form of a distance decay relationship due to their size or life form. We aimed to test spatial and environmental effects, modulated by a seasonal flooding climatic pattern, on the distribution of microalgae in 30 wetlands of a tropical dry forest region: the Pacific coast of Costa Rica and Nicaragua. Three surveys were conducted corresponding to the beginning, the highest peak, and the end of the hydrological year during the wet season, and species abundance and composition of planktonic and benthic microalgae was determined. Variation partitioning analysis (as explained by spatial distance or environmental factors) was applied to each seasonal dataset by means of partial redundancy analysis. Our results show that microalgal assemblages were structured by spatial and environmental factors depending on the hydrological period of the year. At the onset of hydroperiod and during flooding, neutral effects dominated community dynamics, but niche-based local effects resulted in more structured algal communities at the final periods of desiccating water bodies. Results suggest that climate-mediated effects on hydrology can influence the relative role of spatial and environmental factors on metacommunities of microalgae. Such variability needs to be accounted in order to describe accurately community dynamics in tropical coastal wetlands. PMID:26900916

  9. Dynamics and genetics of a disease-driven species decline to near extinction: lessons for conservation.

    PubMed

    Hudson, M A; Young, R P; D'Urban Jackson, J; Orozco-terWengel, P; Martin, L; James, A; Sulton, M; Garcia, G; Griffiths, R A; Thomas, R; Magin, C; Bruford, M W; Cunningham, A A

    2016-01-01

    Amphibian chytridiomycosis has caused precipitous declines in hundreds of species worldwide. By tracking mountain chicken (Leptodactylus fallax) populations before, during and after the emergence of chytridiomycosis, we quantified the real-time species level impacts of this disease. We report a range-wide species decline amongst the fastest ever recorded, with a loss of over 85% of the population in fewer than 18 months on Dominica and near extinction on Montserrat. Genetic diversity declined in the wild, but emergency measures to establish a captive assurance population captured a representative sample of genetic diversity from Montserrat. If the Convention on Biological Diversity's targets are to be met, it is important to evaluate the reasons why they appear consistently unattainable. The emergence of chytridiomycosis in the mountain chicken was predictable, but the decline could not be prevented. There is an urgent need to build mitigation capacity where amphibians are at risk from chytridiomycosis. PMID:27485994

  10. Dynamics and genetics of a disease-driven species decline to near extinction: lessons for conservation

    PubMed Central

    Hudson, M. A.; Young, R. P.; D’Urban Jackson, J.; Orozco-terWengel, P.; Martin, L.; James, A.; Sulton, M.; Garcia, G.; Griffiths, R. A.; Thomas, R.; Magin, C.; Bruford, M. W.; Cunningham, A. A.

    2016-01-01

    Amphibian chytridiomycosis has caused precipitous declines in hundreds of species worldwide. By tracking mountain chicken (Leptodactylus fallax) populations before, during and after the emergence of chytridiomycosis, we quantified the real-time species level impacts of this disease. We report a range-wide species decline amongst the fastest ever recorded, with a loss of over 85% of the population in fewer than 18 months on Dominica and near extinction on Montserrat. Genetic diversity declined in the wild, but emergency measures to establish a captive assurance population captured a representative sample of genetic diversity from Montserrat. If the Convention on Biological Diversity’s targets are to be met, it is important to evaluate the reasons why they appear consistently unattainable. The emergence of chytridiomycosis in the mountain chicken was predictable, but the decline could not be prevented. There is an urgent need to build mitigation capacity where amphibians are at risk from chytridiomycosis. PMID:27485994

  11. Multiple Cues for Winged Morph Production in an Aphid Metacommunity

    PubMed Central

    Mehrparvar, Mohsen; Zytynska, Sharon E.; Weisser, Wolfgang W.

    2013-01-01

    Environmental factors can lead individuals down different developmental pathways giving rise to distinct phenotypes (phenotypic plasticity). The production of winged or unwinged morphs in aphids is an example of two alternative developmental pathways. Dispersal is paramount in aphids that often have a metapopulation structure, where local subpopulations frequently go extinct, such as the specialized aphids on tansy (Tanacetum vulgare). We conducted various experiments to further understand the cues involved in the production of winged dispersal morphs by the two dominant species of the tansy aphid metacommunity, Metopeurum fuscoviride and Macrosiphoniella tanacetaria. We found that the ant-tended M. fuscoviride produced winged individuals predominantly at the beginning of the season while the untended M. tanacetaria produced winged individuals throughout the season. Winged mothers of both species produced winged offspring, although in both species winged offspring were mainly produced by unwinged females. Crowding and the presence of predators, effects already known to influence wing production in other aphid species, increased the percentage of winged offspring in M. tanacetaria, but not in M. fuscoviride. We find there are also other factors (i.e. temporal effects) inducing the production of winged offspring for natural aphid populations. Our results show that the responses of each aphid species are due to multiple wing induction cues. PMID:23472179

  12. Mutualistic Interactions and Community Structure in Biological Metacommunities

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rikvold, Per Arne; Filotas, Elise; Grant, Martin; Parrott, Lael

    2011-03-01

    The role of space in determining species coexistence and community structure is well established. However, previous studies mainly focus on simple competition and predation systems, and the role of mutualistic interspecies interactions is not well understood. Here we use a spatially explicit metacommunity model, in which new species enter by a mutation process, to study the effect of fitness-dependent dispersal on the structure of communities with interactions comprising mutualism, competition, and exploitation. We find that the diversity and interaction network undergo a nonequilibrium phase transition with increasing dispersal rate. Low dispersion rate favors spontaneous emergence of many dissimilar, strongly mutualistic and species-poor local communities. Due to the local dissimilarities, the global diversity is high. High dispersion rate promotes local biodiversity and supports similar, species-rich local communities with a wide range of interactions. The strong similarity between neighboring local communities leads to reduced global diversity. Supported by NSERC (Canada), FQRNT (Québec), NSF (U.S.A.)

  13. Metacommunity structuring in stream networks: roles of dispersal mode, distance type, and regional environmental context

    PubMed Central

    Grönroos, Mira; Heino, Jani; Siqueira, Tadeu; Landeiro, Victor L; Kotanen, Juho; Bini, Luis M

    2013-01-01

    Within a metacommunity, both environmental and spatial processes regulate variation in local community structure. The strength of these processes may vary depending on species traits (e.g., dispersal mode) or the characteristics of the regions studied (e.g., spatial extent, environmental heterogeneity). We studied the metacommunity structuring of three groups of stream macroinvertebrates differing in their overland dispersal mode (passive dispersers with aquatic adults; passive dispersers with terrestrial adults; active dispersers with terrestrial adults). We predicted that environmental structuring should be more important for active dispersers, because of their better ability to track environmental variability, and that spatial structuring should be more important for species with aquatic adults, because of stronger dispersal limitation. We sampled a total of 70 stream riffle sites in three drainage basins. Environmental heterogeneity was unrelated to spatial extent among our study regions, allowing us to examine the effects of these two factors on metacommunity structuring. We used partial redundancy analysis and Moran's eigenvector maps based on overland and watercourse distances to study the relative importance of environmental control and spatial structuring. We found that, compared with environmental control, spatial structuring was generally negligible, and it did not vary according to our predictions. In general, active dispersers with terrestrial adults showed stronger environmental control than the two passively dispersing groups, suggesting that the species dispersing actively are better able to track environmental variability. There were no clear differences in the results based on watercourse and overland distances. The variability in metacommunity structuring among basins was not related to the differences in the environmental heterogeneity and spatial extent. Our study emphasized that (1) environmental control is prevailing in stream metacommunities

  14. Under siege: Isolated tributaries are threatened by regionally impaired metacommunities.

    PubMed

    Merriam, Eric R; Petty, J Todd

    2016-08-01

    Pristine streams are often targeted as conservation priorities because of their ability to preserve regional biodiversity. However, isolation within heavily degraded regions likely alters important metapopulation and metacommunity processes (e.g., rescue and mass effects), affecting the ability of in-tact communities to boost regional conditions. To test this hypothesis, we sampled invertebrate communities and physicochemical conditions from 168 streams within the mountaintop removal-valley fill mining region of West Virginia. We used redundancy analysis to first test for significant effects of local (observed physicochemical conditions) and neighborhood (streams within a 5km buffer) degradation on assemblage structure across all taxa and stress tolerance (low, moderate, high) and dispersal (low, high) categories. We then used generalized linear and hurdle models to characterize changes in community metrics and individual taxa, respectively. Local condition consistently explained the majority of variation (partial R(2) up to 5× those of neighborhood condition) in community structure and was the only factor affecting sensitive taxa. Neighborhood condition explained significant variation in moderately tolerant taxa with low dispersal capacity and highly tolerant taxa, regardless of dispersal. Decreased occurrence (Baetis) and abundance (Maccaffertium) of key taxa and corresponding metrics (%E, %EPT) suggest decreased dispersal and associated mass and rescue effects within degraded neighborhoods. Decreased neighborhood conditions also resulted in the proliferation of tolerant taxa (Chironomidae, Chimarra, Hemerodromia). Our results suggest communities within even the most pristine streams are at risk when isolated within heavily impacted regions. Consequently, protection of regional species' pools in heavily impacted regions will require more than simply conserving un-impacted streams. PMID:27101452

  15. Microcosms metacommunities in river network: niche effects and biodiversity

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Giometto, A.; Carrara, F.; Altermatt, F.; Rinaldo, A.

    2012-04-01

    Many highly diverse landscapes exhibit hierarchical spatial structures that are shaped by geomorphological processes. Riverine ecosystems, among the most diverse habitats on Earth, represent an outstanding example of such mechanisms. In these landscapes, in which connectivity directly influences metacommunity processes, habitat capacity contributes to control biodiversity at several levels. A previous study has already highlighted the effect of connectivity on species distribution at local and regional scales, but habitat capacity was kept uniform. We studied the interaction of connectivity and habitat capacity in an aquatic microcosm experiment, in which microbial communities were grown in 36-well culture plates connected by dispersal. Dispersal occurred by periodic transfer of culture medium among connected local communities, following river network topology. The effect of habitat capacity in these landscapes was investigated by comparing three different spatial configurations of local community volumes: 1. Power law distributed volumes, according to drainage area. 2. Spatial random permutation of the volumes in the above configuration. 3. Equal distribution of volumes (preserving the total volume with respect to the above configurations). The net effect of habitat capacity on community composition was isolated in a control treatment in which communities were kept isolated for the whole duration of the experiment. In all treatments we observed that varying volumes induced niche effects: some protozoan species preferentially occupied larger nodes (systematically in isolation). Nevertheless, there is evidence that position along the network played a significant role in shaping biodiversity patterns. Size distribution measurements for each community were taken with a CASY cell counter, and species abundances data on log scale precision were collected by direct microscope observation.

  16. Natural selection for costly nutrient recycling in simulated microbial metacommunities.

    PubMed

    Boyle, Richard A; Williams, Hywel T P; Lenton, Timothy M

    2012-11-01

    Recycling of essential nutrients occurs at scales from microbial communities to global biogeochemical cycles, often in association with ecological interactions in which two or more species utilise each others' metabolic by-products. However, recycling loops may be unstable; sequences of reactions leading to net recycling may be parasitised by side-reactions causing nutrient loss, while some reactions in any closed recycling loop are likely to be costly to participants. Here we examine the stability of nutrient recycling loops in an individual-based ecosystem model based on microbial functional types that differ in their metabolism. A supplied nutrient is utilised by a "source" functional type, generating a secondary nutrient that is subsequently used by two other types-a "mutualist" that regenerates the initial nutrient at a growth rate cost, and a "parasite" that produces a refractory waste product but does not incur any additional cost. The three functional types are distributed across a metacommunity in which separate patches are linked by a stochastic diffusive migration process. Regions of high mutualist abundance feature high levels of nutrient recycling and increased local population density leading to greater export of individuals, allowing the source-mutualist recycling loop to spread across the system. Individual-level selection favouring parasites is balanced by patch-level selection for high productivity, indirectly favouring mutualists due to the synergistic productivity benefits of the recycling loop they support. This suggests that multi-level selection may promote nutrient cycling and thereby help to explain the apparent ubiquity and stability of nutrient recycling in nature. PMID:22842011

  17. Factors affecting population dynamics of leaf beetles in a subarctic region: The interplay between climate warming and pollution decline.

    PubMed

    Zvereva, Elena L; Hunter, Mark D; Zverev, Vitali; Kozlov, Mikhail V

    2016-10-01

    Understanding the mechanisms by which abiotic drivers, such as climate and pollution, influence population dynamics of animals is important for our ability to predict the population trajectories of individual species under different global change scenarios. We monitored four leaf beetle species (Coleoptera: Chrysomelidae) feeding on willows (Salix spp.) in 13 sites along a pollution gradient in subarctic forests of north-western Russia from 1993 to 2014. During a subset of years, we also measured the impacts of natural enemies and host plant quality on the performance of one of these species, Chrysomela lapponica. Spring and fall temperatures increased by 2.5-3°C during the 21-year observation period, while emissions of sulfur dioxide and heavy metals from the nickel-copper smelter at Monchegorsk decreased fivefold. However, contrary to predictions of increasing herbivory with climate warming, and in spite of discovered increase in host plant quality with increase in temperatures, none of the beetle species became more abundant during the past 20years. No directional trends were observed in densities of either Phratora vitellinae or Plagiodera versicolora, whereas densities of both C. lapponica and Gonioctena pallida showed a simultaneous rapid 20-fold decline in the early 2000s, remaining at very low levels thereafter. Time series analysis and model selection indicated that these abrupt population declines were associated with decreases in aerial emissions from the smelter. Observed declines in the population densities of C. lapponica can be explained by increases in mortality from natural enemies due to the combined action of climate warming and declining pollution. This pattern suggests that at least in some tri-trophic systems, top-down factors override bottom-up effects and govern the impacts of environmental changes on insect herbivores. PMID:27266523

  18. Emergence and decline of scientific paradigms in a dynamic complex network

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yao, Chao; Zhang, Mei

    2013-01-01

    We study the idea spreading process by extending a recent model proposed by Bornholdt [Phys. Rev. Lett.PRLTAO0031-900710.1103/PhysRevLett.106.058701 106, 058701 (2011)] to the population on a two-dimensional square area either in the presence of static topological randomness or in which agents are allowed to freely move. We find that the static topological randomness induced by the random distribution of agents in the square area disfavors the common pattern of scientific paradigms, which is characterized by quick rise and slow decline of an arbitrary dominant idea. However, the common pattern of scientific paradigms is recovered when the movement of agents is enabled. In addition, we find that, when the moving speed of agents is low, the average lifetime of a dominant idea displays an optimal behavior. In contrast, the evolution of the model is no more sensitive to the movement speed once it is high enough.

  19. Varying Patterns on Varying Scales: A Metacommunity Analysis of Nematodes in European Lakes

    PubMed Central

    Dümmer, Birgit; Ristau, Kai; Traunspurger, Walter

    2016-01-01

    Ecological community patterns are often extremely complex and the factors with the greatest influence on community structure have yet to be identified. In this study we used the elements of metacommunity structure (EMS) framework to characterize the metacommunities of freshwater nematodes in 16 European lakes at four geographical scales (radius ranging from 80 m to 360 km). The site characteristics associated with site scores indicative of the structuring gradient were identified using Spearman rank correlations. The metacommunities of the 174 nematode species included in this analysis mostly had a coherent pattern. The degree of turnover increased with increasing scale. Ordination scores correlated with geographical variables on the larger scales and with the trophic state index on a regional scale. The association of the structuring gradient with spatial variables and the scale-dependent increase in turnover showed that nematode dispersal was limited. The different metacommunity patterns identified at the increasing geographical scales suggested different, scale-related mechanisms of species distribution, with species sorting dominating on smaller and mass effects on larger geographical scales. PMID:27008422

  20. Risk Communication, Metacommunication, and Rhetorical Stases in the Aspen-EPA Superfund Controversy.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Stratman, James F.; And Others

    1995-01-01

    Explores the relationship between current theoretical definitions of risk communication, the unique national role that EPA plays in defining health and environmental risks, and possible explanations for EPA's inability to persuade Aspen, Colorado, to accept a cleanup plan. Explores ownership messages conveyed through metacommunication conflict…

  1. Greenhouse gas impacts of declining hydrocarbon resource quality: Depletion, dynamics, and process emissions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Brandt, Adam Robert

    This dissertation explores the environmental and economic impacts of the transition to hydrocarbon substitutes for conventional petroleum (SCPs). First, mathematical models of oil depletion are reviewed, including the Hubbert model, curve-fitting methods, simulation models, and economic models. The benefits and drawbacks of each method are outlined. I discuss the predictive value of the models and our ability to determine if one model type works best. I argue that forecasting oil depletion without also including substitution with SCPs results in unrealistic projections of future energy supply. I next use information theoretic techniques to test the Hubbert model of oil depletion against five other asymmetric and symmetric curve-fitting models using data from 139 oil producing regions. I also test the assumptions that production curves are symmetric and that production is more bell-shaped in larger regions. Results show that if symmetry is enforced, Gaussian production curves perform best, while if asymmetry is allowed, asymmetric exponential models prove most useful. I also find strong evidence for asymmetry: production declines are consistently less steep than inclines. In order to understand the impacts of oil depletion on GHG emissions, I developed the Regional Optimization Model for Emissions from Oil Substitutes (ROMEO). ROMEO is an economic optimization model of investment and production of fuels. Results indicate that incremental emissions (with demand held constant) from SCPs could be 5-20 GtC over the next 50 years. These results are sensitive to the endowment of conventional oil and not sensitive to a carbon tax. If demand can vary, total emissions could decline under a transition because the higher cost of SCPs lessens overall fuel consumption. Lastly, I study the energetic and environmental characteristics of the in situ conversion process, which utilizes electricity to generate liquid hydrocarbons from oil shale. I model the energy inputs and outputs

  2. Population Dynamics of the Critically Endangered Golden Lancehead Pitviper, Bothrops insularis: Stability or Decline?

    PubMed Central

    Guimarães, Murilo; Munguía-Steyer, Roberto; Doherty, Paul F.; Martins, Marcio; Sawaya, Ricardo J.

    2014-01-01

    Little is known about vital rates of snakes generally because of the difficulty in collecting data. Here we used a robust design mark-recapture model to estimate survival, behavioral effects on capture probability, temporary emigration, abundance and test the hypothesis of population decline in the golden lancehead pitviper, Bothrops insularis, an endemic and critically endangered species from southeastern Brazil. We collected data at irregular intervals over ten occasions from 2002 to 2010. Survival was slightly higher in the wet season than in the dry season. Temporal emigration was high, indicating the importance of accounting for this parameter both in the sampling design and modeling. No behavioral effects were detected on capture probability. We detected an average annual population decrease ( = 0.93, CI = 0.47–1.38) during the study period, but estimates included high uncertainty, and caution in interpretation is needed. We discuss the potential effects of the illegal removal of individuals and the implications of the vital rates obtained for the future persistence and conservation of this endemic, endangered species. PMID:24755842

  3. Fertility decline and the changing dynamics of wealth, status and inequality.

    PubMed

    Colleran, Heidi; Jasienska, Grazyna; Nenko, Ilona; Galbarczyk, Andrzej; Mace, Ruth

    2015-05-01

    In the course of demographic transitions (DTs), two large-scale trends become apparent: (i) the broadly positive association between wealth, status and fertility tends to reverse, and (ii) wealth inequalities increase and then temporarily decrease. We argue that these two broad patterns are linked, through a diversification of reproductive strategies that subsequently converge as populations consume more, become less self-sufficient and increasingly depend on education as a route to socio-economic status. We examine these links using data from 22 mid-transition communities in rural Poland. We identify changing relationships between fertility and multiple measures of wealth, status and inequality. Wealth and status generally have opposing effects on fertility, but these associations vary by community. Where farming remains a viable livelihood, reproductive strategies typical of both pre- and post-DT populations coexist. Fertility is lower and less variable in communities with lower wealth inequality, and macro-level patterns in inequality are generally reproduced at the community level. Our results provide a detailed insight into the changing dynamics of wealth, status and inequality that accompany DTs at the community level where peoples' social and economic interactions typically take place. We find no evidence to suggest that women with the most educational capital gain wealth advantages from reducing fertility, nor that higher educational capital delays the onset of childbearing in this population. Rather, these patterns reflect changing reproductive preferences during a period of profound economic and social change, with implications for our understanding of reproductive and socio-economic inequalities in transitioning populations. PMID:25833859

  4. Fertility decline and the changing dynamics of wealth, status and inequality

    PubMed Central

    Colleran, Heidi; Jasienska, Grazyna; Nenko, Ilona; Galbarczyk, Andrzej; Mace, Ruth

    2015-01-01

    In the course of demographic transitions (DTs), two large-scale trends become apparent: (i) the broadly positive association between wealth, status and fertility tends to reverse, and (ii) wealth inequalities increase and then temporarily decrease. We argue that these two broad patterns are linked, through a diversification of reproductive strategies that subsequently converge as populations consume more, become less self-sufficient and increasingly depend on education as a route to socio-economic status. We examine these links using data from 22 mid-transition communities in rural Poland. We identify changing relationships between fertility and multiple measures of wealth, status and inequality. Wealth and status generally have opposing effects on fertility, but these associations vary by community. Where farming remains a viable livelihood, reproductive strategies typical of both pre- and post-DT populations coexist. Fertility is lower and less variable in communities with lower wealth inequality, and macro-level patterns in inequality are generally reproduced at the community level. Our results provide a detailed insight into the changing dynamics of wealth, status and inequality that accompany DTs at the community level where peoples' social and economic interactions typically take place. We find no evidence to suggest that women with the most educational capital gain wealth advantages from reducing fertility, nor that higher educational capital delays the onset of childbearing in this population. Rather, these patterns reflect changing reproductive preferences during a period of profound economic and social change, with implications for our understanding of reproductive and socio-economic inequalities in transitioning populations. PMID:25833859

  5. Season-specific and guild-specific effects of anthropogenic landscape modification on metacommunity structure of tropical bats.

    PubMed

    Cisneros, Laura M; Fagan, Matthew E; Willig, Michael R

    2015-03-01

    Fragmentation per se due to human land conversion is a landscape-scale phenomenon. Accordingly, assessment of distributional patterns across a suite of potentially connected communities (i.e. metacommunity structure) is an appropriate approach for understanding the effects of landscape modification and complements the plethora of fragmentation studies that have focused on local community structure. To date, metacommunity structure within human-modified landscapes has been assessed with regard to nestedness along species richness gradients. This is problematic because there is little support that species richness gradients are associated with the factors moulding species distributions. More importantly, many alternative patterns are possible, and different patterns may manifest during different seasons and for different guilds because of variation in resource availability and resource requirements of taxa. We determined the best-fit metacommunity structure of a phyllostomid bat assemblage, frugivore ensemble, and gleaning animalivore ensemble within a human-modified landscape in the Caribbean lowlands of Costa Rica during the dry and wet seasons to elucidate important structuring mechanisms. Furthermore, we identified the landscape characteristics associated with the latent gradient underlying metacommunity structure. We discriminated among multiple metacommunity structures by assessing coherence, range turnover, and boundary clumping of an ordinated site-by-species matrix. We identified the landscape characteristics associated with the latent gradient underlying metacommunity structure via hierarchical partitioning. Metacommunity structure was never nested nor structured along a richness gradient. The phyllostomid assemblage and frugivore ensemble exhibited Gleasonian structure (range turnover along a common gradient) during the dry season and Clementsian structure (range turnover and shared boundaries along a common gradient) during the wet season. Distance

  6. A Metacommunity Framework for Enhancing the Effectiveness of Biological Monitoring Strategies

    PubMed Central

    Roque, Fabio O.; Cottenie, Karl

    2012-01-01

    Because of inadequate knowledge and funding, the use of biodiversity indicators is often suggested as a way to support management decisions. Consequently, many studies have analyzed the performance of certain groups as indicator taxa. However, in addition to knowing whether certain groups can adequately represent the biodiversity as a whole, we must also know whether they show similar responses to the main structuring processes affecting biodiversity. Here we present an application of the metacommunity framework for evaluating the effectiveness of biodiversity indicators. Although the metacommunity framework has contributed to a better understanding of biodiversity patterns, there is still limited discussion about its implications for conservation and biomonitoring. We evaluated the effectiveness of indicator taxa in representing spatial variation in macroinvertebrate community composition in Atlantic Forest streams, and the processes that drive this variation. We focused on analyzing whether some groups conform to environmental processes and other groups are more influenced by spatial processes, and on how this can help in deciding which indicator group or groups should be used. We showed that a relatively small subset of taxa from the metacommunity would represent 80% of the variation in community composition shown by the entire metacommunity. Moreover, this subset does not have to be composed of predetermined taxonomic groups, but rather can be defined based on random subsets. We also found that some random subsets composed of a small number of genera performed better in responding to major environmental gradients. There were also random subsets that seemed to be affected by spatial processes, which could indicate important historical processes. We were able to integrate in the same theoretical and practical framework, the selection of biodiversity surrogates, indicators of environmental conditions, and more importantly, an explicit integration of environmental

  7. Metacommunity and phylogenetic structure determine wildlife and zoonotic infectious disease patterns in time and space.

    PubMed

    Suzán, Gerardo; García-Peña, Gabriel E; Castro-Arellano, Ivan; Rico, Oscar; Rubio, André V; Tolsá, María J; Roche, Benjamin; Hosseini, Parviez R; Rizzoli, Annapaola; Murray, Kris A; Zambrana-Torrelio, Carlos; Vittecoq, Marion; Bailly, Xavier; Aguirre, A Alonso; Daszak, Peter; Prieur-Richard, Anne-Helene; Mills, James N; Guégan, Jean-Francois

    2015-02-01

    The potential for disease transmission at the interface of wildlife, domestic animals and humans has become a major concern for public health and conservation biology. Research in this subject is commonly conducted at local scales while the regional context is neglected. We argue that prevalence of infection at local and regional levels is influenced by three mechanisms occurring at the landscape level in a metacommunity context. First, (1) dispersal, colonization, and extinction of pathogens, reservoir or vector hosts, and nonreservoir hosts, may be due to stochastic and niche-based processes, thus determining distribution of all species, and then their potential interactions, across local communities (metacommunity structure). Second, (2) anthropogenic processes may drive environmental filtering of hosts, nonhosts, and pathogens. Finally, (3) phylogenetic diversity relative to reservoir or vector host(s), within and between local communities may facilitate pathogen persistence and circulation. Using a metacommunity approach, public heath scientists may better evaluate the factors that predispose certain times and places for the origin and emergence of infectious diseases. The multidisciplinary approach we describe fits within a comprehensive One Health and Ecohealth framework addressing zoonotic infectious disease outbreaks and their relationship to their hosts, other animals, humans, and the environment. PMID:25750713

  8. Metacommunity and phylogenetic structure determine wildlife and zoonotic infectious disease patterns in time and space

    PubMed Central

    Suzán, Gerardo; García-Peña, Gabriel E; Castro-Arellano, Ivan; Rico, Oscar; Rubio, André V; Tolsá, María J; Roche, Benjamin; Hosseini, Parviez R; Rizzoli, Annapaola; Murray, Kris A; Zambrana-Torrelio, Carlos; Vittecoq, Marion; Bailly, Xavier; Aguirre, A Alonso; Daszak, Peter; Prieur-Richard, Anne-Helene; Mills, James N; Guégan, Jean-Francois

    2015-01-01

    The potential for disease transmission at the interface of wildlife, domestic animals and humans has become a major concern for public health and conservation biology. Research in this subject is commonly conducted at local scales while the regional context is neglected. We argue that prevalence of infection at local and regional levels is influenced by three mechanisms occurring at the landscape level in a metacommunity context. First, (1) dispersal, colonization, and extinction of pathogens, reservoir or vector hosts, and nonreservoir hosts, may be due to stochastic and niche-based processes, thus determining distribution of all species, and then their potential interactions, across local communities (metacommunity structure). Second, (2) anthropogenic processes may drive environmental filtering of hosts, nonhosts, and pathogens. Finally, (3) phylogenetic diversity relative to reservoir or vector host(s), within and between local communities may facilitate pathogen persistence and circulation. Using a metacommunity approach, public heath scientists may better evaluate the factors that predispose certain times and places for the origin and emergence of infectious diseases. The multidisciplinary approach we describe fits within a comprehensive One Health and Ecohealth framework addressing zoonotic infectious disease outbreaks and their relationship to their hosts, other animals, humans, and the environment. PMID:25750713

  9. Endosymbiont metacommunities, mtDNA diversity and the evolution of the Bemisia tabaci (Hemiptera: Aleyrodidae) species complex.

    PubMed

    Gueguen, Gwénaelle; Vavre, Fabrice; Gnankine, Olivier; Peterschmitt, Michel; Charif, Delphine; Chiel, Elad; Gottlieb, Yuval; Ghanim, Murad; Zchori-Fein, Einat; Fleury, Frédéric

    2010-10-01

    Bemisia tabaci, an invasive pest that causes crop damage worldwide, is a highly differentiated species complex, divided into biotypes that have mainly been defined based on mitochondrial DNA sequences. Although endosymbionts can potentially induce population differentiation, specialization and indirect selection on mtDNA, studies have largely ignored these influential passengers in B. tabaci, despite as many as seven bacterial endosymbionts have been identified. Here, we investigate the composition of the whole bacterial community in worldwide populations of B. tabaci, together with host genetic differentiation, focusing on the invasive B and Q biotypes. Among 653 individuals studied, more than 95% of them harbour at least one secondary endosymbiont, and multiple infections are very common. In addition, sequence analyses reveal a very high diversity of facultative endosymbionts in B. tabaci, with some bacterial genus being represented by more than one strain. In the B and Q biotypes, nine different strains of bacteria have been identified. The mtDNA-based phylogeny of B. tabaci also reveals a very high nucleotide diversity that partitions the two ITS clades (B and Q) into six CO1 genetic groups. Each genetic group is in linkage disequilibrium with a specific combination of endosymbionts. All together, our results demonstrate the rapid dynamics of the bacterial endosymbiont-host associations at a small evolutionary scale, questioning the role of endosymbiotic communities in the evolution of the Bemisia tabaci species complex and strengthening the need to develop a metacommunity theory of inherited endosymbionts. PMID:20723069

  10. A long-term macroecological analysis of the recovery of a waterbird metacommunity after site protection.

    PubMed

    Pagel, Janina; Martínez-Abraín, Alejandro; Gómez, Juan Antonio; Jiménez, Juan; Oro, Daniel

    2014-01-01

    We used the so called "land-bridge island" or "nested-subsets" theory to test the resilience of a highly fragmented and perturbated waterbird metacommunity, after legal protection of 18 wetlands in the western Mediterranean. Sites were monitored during 28 years and two seasons per year. The metacommunity was composed by 44 species during breeding and 67 species during wintering, including shorebirds, ducks, herons, gulls and divers (Podicipedidae). We identified a strong nested pattern. Consistent with the fact that the study system was to a large extent a spatial biogeographical continuous for thousands of years, fragmented only during the last centuries due to human activities. Non-random selective extinction was the most likely historical process creating the nested pattern, operated by the differential carrying capacity (surface-area) of the remaining sites. We also found a positive temporal trend in nestedness and a decreasing trend in species turnover among sites (β-diversity), indicating that sites are increasingly more alike to each other (i.e. increased biotic homogenization). This decreasing trend in β-diversity was explained by an increasing trend in local (α) diversity by range expansion of half the study species. Regional (γ) diversity also increased over time, indicating that colonization from outside the study system also occurred. Overall our results suggest that the study metacommunity is recovering from historical anthropogenic perturbations, showing a high long-term resilience, as expected for highly vagile waterbirds. However, not all waterbird groups contributed equally to the recovery, with most breeding shorebird species and most wintering duck species showing no geographical expansion. PMID:25133798

  11. A Long-Term Macroecological Analysis of the Recovery of a Waterbird Metacommunity after Site Protection

    PubMed Central

    Pagel, Janina; Martínez-Abraín, Alejandro; Gómez, Juan Antonio; Jiménez, Juan; Oro, Daniel

    2014-01-01

    We used the so called “land-bridge island” or “nested-subsets” theory to test the resilience of a highly fragmented and perturbated waterbird metacommunity, after legal protection of 18 wetlands in the western Mediterranean. Sites were monitored during 28 years and two seasons per year. The metacommunity was composed by 44 species during breeding and 67 species during wintering, including shorebirds, ducks, herons, gulls and divers (Podicipedidae). We identified a strong nested pattern. Consistent with the fact that the study system was to a large extent a spatial biogeographical continuous for thousands of years, fragmented only during the last centuries due to human activities. Non-random selective extinction was the most likely historical process creating the nested pattern, operated by the differential carrying capacity (surface-area) of the remaining sites. We also found a positive temporal trend in nestedness and a decreasing trend in species turnover among sites (β-diversity), indicating that sites are increasingly more alike to each other (i.e. increased biotic homogenization). This decreasing trend in β-diversity was explained by an increasing trend in local (α) diversity by range expansion of half the study species. Regional (γ) diversity also increased over time, indicating that colonization from outside the study system also occurred. Overall our results suggest that the study metacommunity is recovering from historical anthropogenic perturbations, showing a high long-term resilience, as expected for highly vagile waterbirds. However, not all waterbird groups contributed equally to the recovery, with most breeding shorebird species and most wintering duck species showing no geographical expansion. PMID:25133798

  12. Fuzziness and Heterogeneity of Benthic Metacommunities in a Complex Transitional System

    PubMed Central

    Curiel, Daniele; Cossarini, Gianpiero; Melaku Canu, Donata; Rismondo, Andrea

    2012-01-01

    We propose an extension to the metacommunity (MC) concept and a novel operational methodology that has the potential to refine the analysis of MC structure at different hierarchical levels. We show that assemblages of species can also be seen as assemblages of abstract subregional habitat-related metacommunities (habMCs). This intrinsically fuzzy concept recognizes the existence of habMCs that are typically associated with given habitats, while allowing for the mixing and superposition of different habMCs in all sites and for boundaries among subregions that are neither spatially sharp nor temporally constant. The combination of fuzzy clustering and direct gradient analysis permits us to 1) objectively identify the number of habMCs that are present in a region as well as their spatial distributions and relative weights at different sites; 2) associate different subregions with different biological communities; and 3) quantitatively assess the affinities between habMCs and physical, morphological, biogeochemical, and environmental properties, thereby enabling an analysis of the roles and relative importance of various environmental parameters in shaping the spatial structure of a metacommunity. This concept and methodology offer the possibility of integrating the continuum and community unit concepts and of developing the concept of a habMC ecological niche. This approach also facilitates the practical application of the MC concept, which are not currently in common use. Applying these methods to macrophytobenthic and macrozoobenthic hard-substrate assemblages in the Venetian Lagoon, we identified a hierarchical organization of macrobenthic communities that associated different habMCs with different habitats. Our results demonstrate that different reference terms should be applied to different subregions to assess the ecological status of a waterbody and show that a combination of several environmental parameters describes the spatial heterogeneity of benthic

  13. The evolution of the competition-dispersal trade-off affects α- and β-diversity in a heterogeneous metacommunity.

    PubMed

    Laroche, Fabien; Jarne, Philippe; Perrot, Thomas; Massol, Francois

    2016-04-27

    Difference in dispersal ability is a key driver of species coexistence in metacommunities. However, the available frameworks for interpreting species diversity patterns in natura often overlook trade-offs and evolutionary constraints associated with dispersal. Here, we build a metacommunity model accounting for dispersal evolution and a competition-dispersal trade-off. Depending on the distribution of carrying capacities among communities, species dispersal values are distributed either around a single strategy (evolutionarily stable strategy, ESS), or around distinct strategies (evolutionary branching, EB). We show that limited dispersal generates spatial aggregation of dispersal traits in ESS and EB scenarios, and that the competition-dispersal trade-off strengthens the pattern in the EB scenario. Importantly, individuals in larger (respectively (resp.) smaller) communities tend to harbour lower (resp. higher) dispersal, especially under the EB scenario. We explore how dispersal evolution affects species diversity patterns by comparing those from our model to the predictions of a neutral metacommunity model. The most marked difference is detected under EB, with distinctive values of both α- and β-diversity (e.g. the dissimilarity in species composition between small and large communities was significantly larger than neutral predictions). We conclude that, from an empirical perspective, jointly assessing community carrying capacity with species dispersal strategies should improve our understanding of diversity patterns in metacommunities. PMID:27122564

  14. Crying wolf? Biosecurity and metacommunication in the context of the 2009 swine flu pandemic.

    PubMed

    Nerlich, Brigitte; Koteyko, Nelya

    2012-07-01

    This article explores how the 2009 pandemic of swine flu (H1N1) intersected with issues of biosecurity in the context of an increasing entanglement between the spread of disease and the spread of information. Drawing on research into metacommunication, the article studies the rise of communication about ways in which swine flu was communicated, both globally and locally, during the pandemic. It examines and compares two corpora of texts, namely UK newspaper articles and blogs, written between 28 March and 11 June 2009, that is, the period from the start of the outbreak till the WHO announcement of the pandemic. Findings show that the interaction between traditional and digital media as well as the interaction between warnings about swine flu and previous warnings about other epidemics contributed to a heightened discourse of blame and counter-blame but also, more surprisingly, self-blame and reflections about the role the media in pandemic communication. The consequences of this increase in metacommunication for research into crisis communication are explored. PMID:21470893

  15. Combined effects of zooplankton grazing and dispersal on the diversity and assembly mechanisms of bacterial metacommunities.

    PubMed

    Berga, Mercè; Östman, Örjan; Lindström, Eva S; Langenheder, Silke

    2015-07-01

    Effects of dispersal and the presence of predators on diversity, assembly and functioning of bacterial communities are well studied in isolation. In reality, however, dispersal and trophic interactions act simultaneously and can therefore have combined effects, which are poorly investigated. We performed an experiment with aquatic metacommunities consisting of three environmentally different patches and manipulated dispersal rates among them as well as the presence or absence of the keystone species Daphnia magna. Daphnia magna reduced both local and regional diversity, whereas dispersal increased local diversity but decreased beta-diversity having no net effect on regional diversity. Dispersal modified the assembly mechanisms of bacterial communities by increasing the degree of determinism. Additionally, the combination of the D. magna and dispersal increased the importance of deterministic processes, presumably because predator-tolerant taxa were spread in the metacommunity via dispersal. Moreover, the presence of D. magna affected community composition, increased community respiration rates but did not affect bacterial production or abundance, whereas dispersal slightly increased bacterial production. In conclusion, our study suggests that predation by a keystone species such as D. magna and dispersal additively influence bacterial diversity, assembly processes and ecosystem functioning. PMID:25367396

  16. Ecological convergence in a rocky intertidal shore metacommunity despite high spatial variability in recruitment regimes

    PubMed Central

    Caro, Andrés U.; Navarrete, Sergio A.; Castilla, Juan Carlos

    2010-01-01

    In open ecological systems, community structure can be determined by physically modulated processes such as the arrival of individuals from a regional pool and by local biological interactions. There is debate centering on whether niche differentiation and local interactions among species are necessary to explain macroscopic community patterns or whether the patterns can be generated by the neutral interplay of dispersal and stochastic demography among ecologically identical species. Here we evaluate how much of the observed spatial variation within a rocky intertidal metacommunity along 800 km of coastline can be explained by drift in the structure of recruits across 15 local sites. Our results show that large spatial changes in recruitment do not explain the observed spatial variation in adult local structure and that, in comparison with the large drift in structure of recruits, local adult communities converged to a common, although not unique, structure across the region. Although there is no unique adult community structure in the entire region, the observed variation represents only a small subset of the possible structures that would be expected from passive recruitment drift. Thus, in this diverse system our results do not support the idea that rocky intertidal metacommunities are structured by neutral mechanisms. PMID:20937867

  17. Scale-dependence of processes structuring dung beetle metacommunities using functional diversity and community deconstruction approaches.

    PubMed

    Silva, Pedro Giovâni da; Hernández, Malva Isabel Medina

    2015-01-01

    Community structure is driven by mechanisms linked to environmental, spatial and temporal processes, which have been successfully addressed using metacommunity framework. The relative importance of processes shaping community structure can be identified using several different approaches. Two approaches that are increasingly being used are functional diversity and community deconstruction. Functional diversity is measured using various indices that incorporate distinct community attributes. Community deconstruction is a way to disentangle species responses to ecological processes by grouping species with similar traits. We used these two approaches to determine whether they are improvements over traditional measures (e.g., species composition, abundance, biomass) for identification of the main processes driving dung beetle (Scarabaeinae) community structure in a fragmented mainland-island landscape in southern Brazilian Atlantic Forest. We sampled five sites in each of four large forest areas, two on the mainland and two on the island. Sampling was performed in 2012 and 2013. We collected abundance and biomass data from 100 sampling points distributed over 20 sampling sites. We studied environmental, spatial and temporal effects on dung beetle community across three spatial scales, i.e., between sites, between areas and mainland-island. The γ-diversity based on species abundance was mainly attributed to β-diversity as a consequence of the increase in mean α- and β-diversity between areas. Variation partitioning on abundance, biomass and functional diversity showed scale-dependence of processes structuring dung beetle metacommunities. We identified two major groups of responses among 17 functional groups. In general, environmental filters were important at both local and regional scales. Spatial factors were important at the intermediate scale. Our study supports the notion of scale-dependence of environmental, spatial and temporal processes in the distribution

  18. Scale-Dependence of Processes Structuring Dung Beetle Metacommunities Using Functional Diversity and Community Deconstruction Approaches

    PubMed Central

    da Silva, Pedro Giovâni; Hernández, Malva Isabel Medina

    2015-01-01

    Community structure is driven by mechanisms linked to environmental, spatial and temporal processes, which have been successfully addressed using metacommunity framework. The relative importance of processes shaping community structure can be identified using several different approaches. Two approaches that are increasingly being used are functional diversity and community deconstruction. Functional diversity is measured using various indices that incorporate distinct community attributes. Community deconstruction is a way to disentangle species responses to ecological processes by grouping species with similar traits. We used these two approaches to determine whether they are improvements over traditional measures (e.g., species composition, abundance, biomass) for identification of the main processes driving dung beetle (Scarabaeinae) community structure in a fragmented mainland-island landscape in southern Brazilian Atlantic Forest. We sampled five sites in each of four large forest areas, two on the mainland and two on the island. Sampling was performed in 2012 and 2013. We collected abundance and biomass data from 100 sampling points distributed over 20 sampling sites. We studied environmental, spatial and temporal effects on dung beetle community across three spatial scales, i.e., between sites, between areas and mainland-island. The γ-diversity based on species abundance was mainly attributed to β-diversity as a consequence of the increase in mean α- and β-diversity between areas. Variation partitioning on abundance, biomass and functional diversity showed scale-dependence of processes structuring dung beetle metacommunities. We identified two major groups of responses among 17 functional groups. In general, environmental filters were important at both local and regional scales. Spatial factors were important at the intermediate scale. Our study supports the notion of scale-dependence of environmental, spatial and temporal processes in the distribution

  19. Comparative Solar Wind Properties at 9AU between the maximum and late declining phases of the Solar Cycle and possible implications for the magnetospheric dynamics of Saturn

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Went, D. R.; Jackman, C. M.; Forsyth, R. J.; Dougherty, M. K.; Crary, F. J.

    2009-04-01

    We compare and contrast the general plasma and magnetic field properties of the solar wind upstream of Saturn (8.5-9.5 AU) at solar maximum (Pioneer-11 encounter) and the late-declining (Cassini approach) phase of the solar cycle. In both cases we find a highly structured solar wind dominated by co-rotating interaction regions (CIRs), merged interaction regions (MIRs) and Interplanetary Coronal Mass Ejections (ICMEs) that temporarily disrupt an otherwise clear two sector interplanetary magnetic field structure. Solar rotations generally contain two CIR compressions with embedded crossings of the heliospheric current sheet. There is no conclusive evidence for (persistent) departures from the Parker Spiral IMF model in this region of the heliosphere at either phase of the solar cycle, consistent with previous analyses (Thomas and Smith 1980, Jackman et al. 2008). However it is clear that average plasma properties vary significantly between the maximum and late declining phases of the cycle and there are a number of small but notable deviations. In particular, the average dynamic pressure of the solar wind varies by a factor of roughly two between solar maximum and solar minimum with potentially important consequences for the dynamics of Saturn's magnetosphere. These consequences should become apparent as Cassini enters its extended Equinox Mission which should encompass the rising phase and eventually maximum of Solar Cycle 24. They will be discussed and predictions will be made for future Cassini observations.

  20. Seasonal and ontogenetic variation of skin microbial communities and relationships to natural disease dynamics in declining amphibians

    PubMed Central

    Longo, Ana V.; Savage, Anna E.; Hewson, Ian; Zamudio, Kelly R.

    2015-01-01

    Recently, microbiologists have focused on characterizing the probiotic role of skin bacteria for amphibians threatened by the fungal disease chytridiomycosis. However, the specific characteristics of microbial diversity required to maintain health or trigger disease are still not well understood in natural populations. We hypothesized that seasonal and developmental transitions affecting susceptibility to chytridiomycosis could also alter the stability of microbial assemblages. To test our hypothesis, we examined patterns of skin bacterial diversity in two species of declining amphibians (Lithobates yavapaiensis and Eleutherodactylus coqui) affected by the pathogenic fungus Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis (Bd). We focused on two important transitions that affect Bd susceptibility: ontogenetic (from juvenile to adult) shifts in E. coqui and seasonal (from summer to winter) shifts in L. yavapaiensis. We used a combination of community-fingerprinting analyses and 16S rRNA amplicon sequencing to quantify changes in bacterial diversity and assemblage composition between seasons and developmental stages, and to investigate the relationship between bacterial diversity and pathogen load. We found that winter-sampled frogs and juveniles, two states associated with increased Bd susceptibility, exhibited higher diversity compared with summer-sampled frogs and adult individuals. Our findings also revealed that hosts harbouring higher bacterial diversity carried lower Bd infections, providing support for the protective role of bacterial communities. Ongoing work to understand skin microbiome resilience after pathogen disturbance has the potential to identify key taxa involved in disease resistance. PMID:26587253

  1. Seasonal and ontogenetic variation of skin microbial communities and relationships to natural disease dynamics in declining amphibians.

    PubMed

    Longo, Ana V; Savage, Anna E; Hewson, Ian; Zamudio, Kelly R

    2015-07-01

    Recently, microbiologists have focused on characterizing the probiotic role of skin bacteria for amphibians threatened by the fungal disease chytridiomycosis. However, the specific characteristics of microbial diversity required to maintain health or trigger disease are still not well understood in natural populations. We hypothesized that seasonal and developmental transitions affecting susceptibility to chytridiomycosis could also alter the stability of microbial assemblages. To test our hypothesis, we examined patterns of skin bacterial diversity in two species of declining amphibians (Lithobates yavapaiensis and Eleutherodactylus coqui) affected by the pathogenic fungus Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis (Bd). We focused on two important transitions that affect Bd susceptibility: ontogenetic (from juvenile to adult) shifts in E. coqui and seasonal (from summer to winter) shifts in L. yavapaiensis. We used a combination of community-fingerprinting analyses and 16S rRNA amplicon sequencing to quantify changes in bacterial diversity and assemblage composition between seasons and developmental stages, and to investigate the relationship between bacterial diversity and pathogen load. We found that winter-sampled frogs and juveniles, two states associated with increased Bd susceptibility, exhibited higher diversity compared with summer-sampled frogs and adult individuals. Our findings also revealed that hosts harbouring higher bacterial diversity carried lower Bd infections, providing support for the protective role of bacterial communities. Ongoing work to understand skin microbiome resilience after pathogen disturbance has the potential to identify key taxa involved in disease resistance. PMID:26587253

  2. Environmental Controls on River Assemblages at the Regional Scale: An Application of the Elements of Metacommunity Structure Framework.

    PubMed

    Tonkin, Jonathan D; Sundermann, Andrea; Jähnig, Sonja C; Haase, Peter

    2015-01-01

    Understanding factors that structure regional biodiversity is important for linking ecological and biogeographic processes. Our objective was to explore regional patterns in riverine benthic invertebrate assemblages in relation to their broad positioning along the river network and examine differences in composition, biodiversity (alpha and beta diversity), and environmental drivers. We up-scaled methods used to examine patterns in metacommunity structure (Elements of Metacommunity Structure framework) to examine faunal distribution patterns at the regional extent for 168 low-mountain stream invertebrate assemblages in central Germany. We then identified the most influential environmental factors using boosted regression trees. Faunal composition patterns were compartmentalised (Clementsian or quasi-Clementsian), with little difference from headwaters to large rivers, potentially reflecting the regional scale of the study, by crossing major catchment boundaries and incorporating different species pools. While idealised structures did not vary, environmental drivers of composition varied considerably between river sections and with alpha diversity. Prediction was substantially weaker, and the importance of space was greater, in large rivers compared to other sections suggesting a weakening in species sorting downstream. Further, there was a stronger transition in composition than for alpha diversity downstream. The stronger links with regional faunal composition than with richness further emphasises the importance of considering the alternative ways in which anthropogenic stressors are operating to affect biodiversity patterns. Our approach allowed bridging the gap between local (or metacommunity) and regional scales, providing key insights into drivers of regional biodiversity patterns. PMID:26270550

  3. Environmental Controls on River Assemblages at the Regional Scale: An Application of the Elements of Metacommunity Structure Framework

    PubMed Central

    Tonkin, Jonathan D.; Sundermann, Andrea

    2015-01-01

    Understanding factors that structure regional biodiversity is important for linking ecological and biogeographic processes. Our objective was to explore regional patterns in riverine benthic invertebrate assemblages in relation to their broad positioning along the river network and examine differences in composition, biodiversity (alpha and beta diversity), and environmental drivers. We up-scaled methods used to examine patterns in metacommunity structure (Elements of Metacommunity Structure framework) to examine faunal distribution patterns at the regional extent for 168 low-mountain stream invertebrate assemblages in central Germany. We then identified the most influential environmental factors using boosted regression trees. Faunal composition patterns were compartmentalised (Clementsian or quasi-Clementsian), with little difference from headwaters to large rivers, potentially reflecting the regional scale of the study, by crossing major catchment boundaries and incorporating different species pools. While idealised structures did not vary, environmental drivers of composition varied considerably between river sections and with alpha diversity. Prediction was substantially weaker, and the importance of space was greater, in large rivers compared to other sections suggesting a weakening in species sorting downstream. Further, there was a stronger transition in composition than for alpha diversity downstream. The stronger links with regional faunal composition than with richness further emphasises the importance of considering the alternative ways in which anthropogenic stressors are operating to affect biodiversity patterns. Our approach allowed bridging the gap between local (or metacommunity) and regional scales, providing key insights into drivers of regional biodiversity patterns. PMID:26270550

  4. Temporal and spatial dynamics of trypanosomes infecting the brush-tailed bettong (Bettongia penicillata): a cautionary note of disease-induced population decline

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background The brush-tailed bettong or woylie (Bettongia penicillata) is on the brink of extinction. Its numbers have declined by 90% since 1999, with their current distribution occupying less than 1% of their former Australian range. Woylies are known to be infected with three different trypanosomes (Trypanosoma vegrandis, Trypanosoma copemani and Trypanosoma sp. H25) and two different strains of T. copemani that vary in virulence. However, the role that these haemoparasites have played during the recent decline of their host is unclear and is part of ongoing investigation. Methods Woylies were sampled from five locations in southern Western Australia, including two neighbouring indigenous populations, two enclosed (fenced) populations and a captive colony. PCR was used to individually identify the three different trypanosomes from blood and tissues of the host, and to investigate the temporal and spatial dynamics of trypanosome infections. Results The spatial pattern of trypanosome infection varied among the five study sites, with a greater proportion of woylies from the Perup indigenous population being infected with T. copemani than from the neighbouring Kingston indigenous population. For an established infection, T. copemani detection was temporally inconsistent. The more virulent strain of T. copemani appeared to regress at a faster rate than the less virulent strain, with the infection possibly transitioning from the acute to chronic phase. Interspecific competition may also exist between T. copemani and T. vegrandis, where an existing T. vegrandis infection may moderate the sequential establishment of the more virulent T. copemani. Conclusion In this study, we provide a possible temporal connection implicating T. copemani as the disease agent linked with the recent decline of the Kingston indigenous woylie population within the Upper Warren region of Western Australia. The chronic association of trypanosomes with the internal organs of its host may be

  5. Coral reef ecosystem decline: changing dynamics of coral reef carbonate production and implications for reef growth potential

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Perry, Chris

    2016-04-01

    Global-scale deteriorations in coral reef health have caused major shifts in species composition and are likely to be exacerbated by climate change. It has been suggested that one effect of these ecological changes will be to lower reef carbonate production rates, which will impair reef growth potential and, ultimately, may lead to states of net reef erosion. However, quantitative data to support such assertions are limited, and linkages between the ecological state of coral reefs and their past and present geomorphic performance (in other words their growth potential) are poorly resolved. Using recently collected data from sites in the Caribbean and Indian Ocean, and which have undergone very different post-disturbance ecological trajectories over the last ~20-30 years, the differential impacts of disturbance on contemporary carbonate production regimes and on reef growth potential can be explored. In the Caribbean, a region which has been severely impacted ecological over the last 30+ years, our datasets show that average carbonate production rates on reefs are now less than 50% of pre-disturbance rates, and that calculated accretion rates (mm yr-1) are an about order of magnitude lower within shallow water habitats compared to Holocene averages. Collectively, these data suggest that recent ecological declines are now propagating through the system to impact on the geomorphic performance of Caribbean reefs and will impair their future growth potential. In contrast, the carbonate budgets of most reefs across the Chagos archipelago (central Indian Ocean), which is geographically remote and largely isolated from direct human disturbances, have recovered rapidly from major past disturbances (specifically the 1998 coral bleaching event). The carbonate budgets on these remote reefs now average +3.7 G (G = kg CaCO3 m-2 yr-1). Most significantly the production rates on Acropora-dominated reefs, which were most severely impacted by the 1998 bleaching event, average +8.4 G

  6. Nested patterns in hyporheic meta-communities: the role of body morphology and penetrability of sediment

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Omesová, Marie; Horsák, Michal; Helešic, Jan

    2008-10-01

    Nestedness has been regarded as a common pattern of species distribution especially in terrestrial systems and vertebrate faunas. However, a significantly lower degree of nestedness has been reported for aquatic invertebrates. We analyzed the vertical distribution patterns of taxa in the upper 70 cm of the hyporheic zone. This biotope is abundantly inhabited by epigean fauna, which is morphologically pre-adapted to life within the limited space of sediment interstices. We tested the hypotheses that in the vertical profile of the hyporheic zone sediment acts as a physical barrier (filter), allowing only the morphologically pre-adapted and adapted (i.e., smaller, narrower, more flexible) taxa to penetrate to deeper layers. We demonstrated that this mechanism can promote a strongly nested and colonization-driven pattern at higher taxa levels. The sediment filter (1) constricted the body width: 0.50 mm appeared to be the upper limit for successful sediment colonization at the study site, and (2) favored elongated taxa against small sized taxa. We tested also the assumption that distribution of fine sediment affects the accessibility of hyporheic zone for fauna (“filter density”) and thereby influences nestedness. However, we found that nestedness could be sufficiently explained by the depth itself. Our study offers a possible explanation of depth patterns in hyporeic meta-communities as a result of morphological characteristics promoting nestedness at higher taxa level.

  7. Detecting warning signs of trouble within population fluctuations: using capture-recapture modeling to uncover changes in population dynamics leading to declines

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Spendelow, J.A.; Nichols, J.D.; Kendall, W.L.; Hines, J.E.; Hatfield, J.S.; Nisbet, I.C.T.

    2004-01-01

    An intensive mark-recapture/resighting program has been carried out on the Roseate Terns nesting at Falkner Island, Connecticut, since the late 1980s as part of a regional study of the metapopulation dynamics and ecology of the endangered Northwest Atlantic breeding population of this species. Substantial losses of tern eggs and chicks to predation at this colony site began in 1996 when at least five Black-crowned Night-Herons started nocturnal raids. This depredation has been a major factor in the reduction of productivity from an average of about 1.0 chicks/pair for the 10 years before night-heron predation began to as low as about 0.2 chicks/pair in 2002. Recent capture-recapture modelling analyses have detected other important impacts on the population dynamics of the Roseate Terns at this site including a reduction by about half in the 'development-of-residency' rates of first-time breeders, and a substantial decline in the local 'survival-and-fidelity' rates of experienced breeders believed due mostly to increased immigration rates to other colony sites.

  8. Metacommunity theory as a multispecies, multiscale framework for studying the influence of river network structure on riverine communities and ecosystems

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Brown, B.L.; Swan, C.M.; Auerbach, D.A.; Campbell, Grant E.H.; Hitt, N.P.; Maloney, K.O.; Patrick, C.

    2011-01-01

    Explaining the mechanisms underlying patterns of species diversity and composition in riverine networks is challenging. Historically, community ecologists have conceived of communities as largely isolated entities and have focused on local environmental factors and interspecific interactions as the major forces determining species composition. However, stream ecologists have long embraced a multiscale approach to studying riverine ecosystems and have studied both local factors and larger-scale regional factors, such as dispersal and disturbance. River networks exhibit a dendritic spatial structure that can constrain aquatic organisms when their dispersal is influenced by or confined to the river network. We contend that the principles of metacommunity theory would help stream ecologists to understand how the complex spatial structure of river networks mediates the relative influences of local and regional control on species composition. From a basic ecological perspective, the concept is attractive because new evidence suggests that the importance of regional processes (dispersal) depends on spatial structure of habitat and on connection to the regional species pool. The role of local factors relative to regional factors will vary with spatial position in a river network. From an applied perspective, the long-standing view in ecology that local community composition is an indicator of habitat quality may not be uniformly applicable across a river network, but the strength of such bioassessment approaches probably will depend on spatial position in the network. The principles of metacommunity theory are broadly applicable across taxa and systems but seem of particular consequence to stream ecology given the unique spatial structure of riverine systems. By explicitly embracing processes at multiple spatial scales, metacommunity theory provides a foundation on which to build a richer understanding of stream communities.

  9. The Aftermath of Decline.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Cameron, Kim S.; Chaffee, Ellen Earle

    Differences between declining colleges and colleges not experiencing decline were investigated, along with dysfunctional organizational consequences that may be associated with decline. Attention is directed to 12 negative attributes resulting from conditions of decline, seven of which were found to be significant: no innovation, scapegoating,…

  10. The core microbiome bonds the Alpine bog vegetation to a transkingdom metacommunity.

    PubMed

    Bragina, Anastasia; Berg, Christian; Berg, Gabriele

    2015-09-01

    Bog ecosystems fulfil important functions in Earth's carbon and water turnover. While plant communities and their keystone species Sphagnum have been well studied, less is known about the microbial communities associated with them. To study our hypothesis that bog plants share an essential core of their microbiome despite their different phylogenetic origins, we analysed four plant community plots with 24 bryophytes, vascular plants and lichen species in two Alpine bogs in Austria by 16S rDNA amplicon sequencing followed by bioinformatic analyses. The overall bog microbiome was classified into 32 microbial phyla, while Proteobacteria (30.8%), Verrucomicrobia (20.3%) and Planctomycetes (15.1%) belonged to the most abundant groups. Interestingly, the archaeal phylum Euryarcheota represented 7.2% of total microbial abundance. However, a high portion of micro-organisms remained unassigned at phylum and class level, respectively. The core microbiome of the bog vegetation contained 177 operational taxonomic units (OTUs) (150 526 seq.) and contributed to 49.5% of the total microbial abundance. Only a minor portion of associated core micro-organisms was host specific for examined plant groups (5.9-11.6%). Using our new approach to analyse plant-microbial communities in an integral framework of ecosystem, vegetation and microbiome, we demonstrated that bog vegetation harboured a core microbiome that is shared between plants and lichens over the whole ecosystem and formed a transkingdom metacommunity. All micro- and macro-organisms are connected to keystone Sphagnum mosses via set of microbial species, for example Burkholderia bryophila which was found associated with a wide spectrum of host plants and is known for a beneficial plant-microbe interaction. PMID:26335913

  11. Growth declines in red spruce

    SciTech Connect

    Zedaker, S.M.; Hyink, D.M.; Smith, D.W.

    1987-01-01

    Over the past two decades second-growth red spruce stands in the Northeast have demonstrated declines in radial increment. Some observers are implicating air pollution as a primary cause of the declines, based on recently acquired increment cores from dominant trees. Various forms of air pollution (O/sub 3/, NO/sub x/, SO/sub 2/, and trace metals) are known to reduce growth and development of tree species, but few studies have provided concrete evidence of regional pollution-caused declines in forest ecosystems. Recently published evidence of a synchronous, consistent, and unprecedented regional decline in red spruce should be weighed against the realization that radial increment in red spruce declines naturally as stands age. Separating anthropogenic stress-caused growth patterns from natural stand dynamics requires an in-depth knowledge of forest growth and yield, tree silvics, and forest ecosystem processes. Detailed analyses of growth by stand characteristics - site index, density, elevation, stand history - will be necessary to implicate air pollution as a primary cause of red spruce decline.

  12. The Aftermath of Decline.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Cameron, Kim S.; And Others

    1987-01-01

    A study investigated the presence or absence of 12 attributes of declining business organizations in colleges and universities experiencing decline and found that significant differences occurred not between declining and stable organizations or those with stable or unstable budgets, but between growing and static organizations. (Author/MSE)

  13. Growth declines in red spruce

    SciTech Connect

    McLaughlin, S.B. ); Adams, H.S. )

    1987-10-01

    In this letter, the authors take issue with Zedaker, Hyink, and Smith who have indicated that observed red spruce growth declines can be expected based on growth trends for even-aged stands of red spruce as documented in Meyer (1929). Recently, an examination was made of stand stocking levels at 750 sites where red spruce were cored and neither the rate of growth decline nor the extent of mortality were found to be related to stand stocking levels or previous disturbance history. The authors conclude that the Meyer data do not represent an appropriate model for stand dynamics of old-growth, high-elevation stands and no not adequately explain the growth declines observed at many of those sites.

  14. Effects of species’ similarity and dominance on the functional and phylogenetic structure of a plant meta-community

    PubMed Central

    Chalmandrier, L.; Münkemüller, T.; Lavergne, S.; Thuiller, W.

    2015-01-01

    Different assembly processes drive the spatial structure of meta-communities (β-diversity). Recently, functional and phylogenetic diversities have been suggested as indicators of these assembly processes. Assuming that diversity is a good proxy for niche overlap, high β-diversity along environmental gradients should be the result of environmental filtering while low β-diversity should stem from competitive interactions. So far studies trying to disentangle the relative importance of these assembly processes provided mixed results. One reason for this may be that these studies often rely on a single measure of diversity and thus implicitly make a choice on how they account for species relative abundances and how species similarities are captured by functional traits or phylogeny. Here, we tested the effect of gradually scaling the importance of dominance (the weight given to dominant vs. rare species) and species similarity (the weight given to small vs. large similarities) on resulting β-diversity patterns of an alpine plant meta-community. To this end, we combined recent extensions of the Hill numbers framework with Pagel’s phylogenetic tree transformation approach. We included functional (based on the Leaf-Height-Seed spectrum) and phylogenetic facets of β-diversity in our analysis and explicitly accounted for effects of environmental and spatial covariates. We found that functional β-diversity was high when the same weight was given to dominant vs. rare species and to large vs. small species’ similarities. In contrast, phylogenetic β-diversity was low when greater weight was given to dominant species and small species’ similarities. Those results suggested that different environments along the gradients filtered different species according to their functional traits, while, the same competitive lineages dominated communities across the gradients. Our results highlight that functional vs. phylogenetic facets, presence-absence vs. abundance structure

  15. Metacommunity Composition of Web-Spiders in a Fragmented Neotropical Forest: Relative Importance of Environmental and Spatial Effects

    PubMed Central

    Baldissera, Ronei; Rodrigues, Everton N. L.; Hartz, Sandra M.

    2012-01-01

    The distribution of beta diversity is shaped by factors linked to environmental and spatial control. The relative importance of both processes in structuring spider metacommunities has not yet been investigated in the Atlantic Forest. The variance explained by purely environmental, spatially structured environmental, and purely spatial components was compared for a metacommunity of web spiders. The study was carried out in 16 patches of Atlantic Forest in southern Brazil. Field work was done in one landscape mosaic representing a slight gradient of urbanization. Environmental variables encompassed plot- and patch-level measurements and a climatic matrix, while principal coordinates of neighbor matrices (PCNMs) acted as spatial variables. A forward selection procedure was carried out to select environmental and spatial variables influencing web-spider beta diversity. Variation partitioning was used to estimate the contribution of pure environmental and pure spatial effects and their shared influence on beta-diversity patterns, and to estimate the relative importance of selected environmental variables. Three environmental variables (bush density, land use in the surroundings of patches, and shape of patches) and two spatial variables were selected by forward selection procedures. Variation partitioning revealed that 15% of the variation of beta diversity was explained by a combination of environmental and PCNM variables. Most of this variation (12%) corresponded to pure environmental and spatially environmental structure. The data indicated that (1) spatial legacy was not important in explaining the web-spider beta diversity; (2) environmental predictors explained a significant portion of the variation in web-spider composition; (3) one-third of environmental variation was due to a spatial structure that jointly explains variation in species distributions. We were able to detect important factors related to matrix management influencing the web-spider beta

  16. Final Report for Dynamic Models for Causal Analysis of Panel Data. Internal Politics of Growth and Decline. Part II, Chapter 2.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hannan, Michael T.; Freeman, John

    The document, part of a series of chapters described in SO 011 759, describes a model that incorporates organizational politics and environmental dependence into a study of the effects of growth and decline on the number of school personnel. The first section describes the original model which assumes that as the number of students in a district…

  17. Facilities and Declining Enrollment.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Illinois State Office of Education, Springfield. Dept. of Planning, Research and Evaluation.

    The results of a survey of 55 Illinois school districts which had experienced declining enrollment and surplus school space are reported in this paper. All 55 districts had closed at least one school as a result of enrollment decline, resulting in a total of 89 school closures. The two most important criteria for selecting the schools to be closed…

  18. Declining Enrollment Conference Report.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Arizona State Dept. of Education, Phoenix.

    This report summarizes the results of a conference on declining enrollment sponsored by the Arizona State Department of Education. Topics covered include school closing, budget implications of declining enrollment, staffing problems and reduction in force, board of education and community support, problems of small school districts, and…

  19. Watermelon Vine Declines

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    A number of diseases have been identified that cause the wilt, collapse and general decline of watermelon plants. These diseases occur in watermelon growing areas around the world and are generically referred to as vine declines. In the 1990’s, Monosporascus root rot was identified as a disease of...

  20. Rational forest productivity decline.

    PubMed

    MacLellan, James I; Carleton, T J

    2003-01-01

    A whole forest optimisation model was employed to examine economic behaviour as it relates to long term, forest productivity decline in the boreal forests of Ontario, Canada. Our productivity investment model (PIM) incorporated a choice between productivity decline as represented by a drop in forest Site Class, and a fee to 'maintain' site productivity. Sensitivity analysis was used to determine the point at which these fees exceeded the value of the differential in timber volume between upper and lower site classes. By varying discount rate, 'productivity investment frontiers' were constructed, which highlight the effects of the magnitude in productivity decline, maintenance fees, and harvest flow constraints upon the occurrence and schedule of productivity declines. In presenting this simple approach to exploring the effects of economic choice upon forest productivity decline, the phenomena of 'natural capital divestment' within forestry is described. PMID:12859006

  1. Coping with Decline

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Boulding, Kenneth

    1977-01-01

    A quantitative decline is predicted because of the leveling off of industrial production and exhaustion of resources. Coping with these conditions requires flexibility and adaptability. Delusions of certainty zero in on catastrophe. (Author/MLF)

  2. Urban Decline and Durable Housing.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Glaeser, Edward L.; Gyourko, Joseph

    2005-01-01

    Urban decline is not the mirror image of growth, and durable housing is the primary reason the nature of decline is so different. This paper presents a model of urban decline with durable housing and verifies these implications of the model: (1) city growth rates are skewed so that cities grow more quickly than they decline; (2) urban decline is…

  3. A spatial analysis of population dynamics and climate change in Africa: potential vulnerability hot spots emerge where precipitation declines and demographic pressures coincide

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    López-Carr, David; Pricope, Narcisa G.; Aukema, Juliann E.; Jankowska, Marta M.; Funk, Christopher C.; Husak, Gregory J.; Michaelsen, Joel C.

    2014-01-01

    We present an integrative measure of exposure and sensitivity components of vulnerability to climatic and demographic change for the African continent in order to identify “hot spots” of high potential population vulnerability. Getis-Ord Gi* spatial clustering analyses reveal statistically significant locations of spatio-temporal precipitation decline coinciding with high population density and increase. Statistically significant areas are evident, particularly across central, southern, and eastern Africa. The highly populated Lake Victoria basin emerges as a particularly salient hot spot. People located in the regions highlighted in this analysis suffer exceptionally high exposure to negative climate change impacts (as populations increase on lands with decreasing rainfall). Results may help inform further hot spot mapping and related research on demographic vulnerabilities to climate change. Results may also inform more suitable geographical targeting of policy interventions across the continent.

  4. Is America in Decline?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Prowse, Michael

    1992-01-01

    Rather than decline, the issues are increased equality among industrialized nations, increased U.S. social inequality, and social implications of the new economy. The best way to tackle growing social inequality is by reshaping education to give workers the skills needed for this new economy. (JOW)

  5. Fraternities in Decline.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Reisberg, Leo

    2000-01-01

    Reports on a decline in fraternity membership, which is ascribed to changing demographics, bad publicity about alcohol abuse and hazing incidents, and changing student values. Graphs illustrate fraternity membership trends at six universities, including 10-year comparisons in membership, academic performance, and pledges; and average number of men…

  6. Declining Resources, Targeted Strategies

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Levenson, Nathan

    2011-01-01

    As resources shrink, the need to do more with less becomes critical. As a business CEO turned superintendent, this author has seen firsthand that many options exist, but none are fun, easy, or politically rewarding. He contends that the challenge of managing declining resources is not the choice between doing less for children or discovering new…

  7. Rising Above Decline.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Wachtel, Betsy; Powers, Brian

    This volume attempts to document ways in which several communities have dealt with the problems of declining school enrollments. Each case study outlines some type of public participation in the task of adjusting to population changes and fiscal pressures. The first chapter supplies an introductory overview of issues related to declining…

  8. Inferring the effects of potential dispersal routes on the metacommunity structure of stream insects: as the crow flies, as the fish swims or as the fox runs?

    PubMed

    Kärnä, Olli-Matti; Grönroos, Mira; Antikainen, Harri; Hjort, Jan; Ilmonen, Jari; Paasivirta, Lauri; Heino, Jani

    2015-09-01

    1. Metacommunity research relies largely on proxies for inferring the effect of dispersal on local community structure. Overland and watercourse distances have been typically used as such proxies. A good proxy for dispersal should, however, take into account more complex landscape features that can affect an organism's movement and dispersal. The cost distance approach does just that, allowing determining the path of least resistance across a landscape. 2. Here, we examined the distance decay of assemblage similarity within a subarctic stream insect metacommunity. We tested whether overland, watercourse and cumulative cost distances performed differently as correlates of dissimilarity in assemblage composition between sites. We also investigated the effect of body size and dispersal mode on metacommunity organization. 3. We found that dissimilarities in assemblage composition correlated more strongly with environmental than physical distances between sites. Overland and watercourse distances showed similar correlations to assemblage dissimilarity between sites, being sometimes significantly correlated with biological variation of entire insect communities. In metacommunities deconstructed by body size or dispersal mode, contrary to our expectation, passive dispersers showed a slightly stronger correlation than active dispersers to environmental differences between sites, although passive dispersers also showed a stronger correlation than active dispersers to physical distances between sites. The strength of correlation between environmental distance and biological dissimilarity also varied slightly among the body size classes. 4. After controlling for environmental differences between sites, cumulative cost distances were slightly better correlates of biological dissimilarities than overland or watercourse distances between sites. However, quantitative differences in correlation coefficients were small between different physical distances. 5. Although environmental

  9. 85 million years of pelagic ecosystem evolution: Pacific Ocean deep-sea ichthyolith records reveal fish community dynamics and a long-term decline in sharks

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sibert, E. C.; Norris, R. D.; Cuevas, J. M.; Graves, L. G.

    2015-12-01

    The structure and productivity of open ocean consumers has undergone major changes over the past 85 million years. Here, we present the first long-term detailed records of pelagic fish and sharks utilizing the record of ichthyoliths (teeth and dermal scales) from the deep Pacific Ocean. While the North and South Pacific Oceans show similar patterns throughout the 85 million year history, the North Pacific ichthyolith accumulation is significantly higher than the South Pacific, suggesting that the basin has been a more productive region for tens of millions of years. Fish and sharks were not abundant in the Pacific gyres until ~75 million years ago (Ma) suggesting that neither group was quantitatively important in oligotrophic pelagic food webs prior to the latest Cretaceous. Relative to ray-finned fish, sharks were common in the ancient ocean. Most ichthyolith assemblages have >50% shark dermal scales (denticles), but denticle abundance has been declining in both absolute and relative abundance since the Cretaceous-Paleogene (K/Pg) mass extinction. The accumulation rate of ichthyoliths of both sharks and ray-finned fish was highest in the Early Eocene, during the peak of the Cenozoic 'greenhouse' climate where production of shark dermal denticles and fish teeth increased almost five times over Paleocene production rates. Ichthyolith fluxes fell with cooler climates in the later Eocene and Oligocene, but fish production is almost always higher than in the Cretaceous and Paleocene reflecting the expanded ecological roles and importance of pelagic fish in marine ecosystems. Shark denticle production fell to less than half that of the Cretaceous by 20 Ma when it dropped abruptly to near-zero levels. Currently denticles make up <2% of the ichthyolith assemblages when present at all. Ecologically, pelagic sharks appear to be falling as major pelagic consumers over the Late Cretaceous and Cenozoic, and particularly over the past 20 Ma, perhaps reflecting demographic

  10. Cardiac mitochondrial proteome dynamics with heavy water reveals stable rate of mitochondrial protein synthesis in heart failure despite decline in mitochondrial oxidative capacity.

    PubMed

    Shekar, Kadambari Chandra; Li, Ling; Dabkowski, Erinne R; Xu, Wenhong; Ribeiro, Rogerio Faustino; Hecker, Peter A; Recchia, Fabio A; Sadygov, Rovshan G; Willard, Belinda; Kasumov, Takhar; Stanley, William C

    2014-10-01

    We recently developed a method to measure mitochondrial proteome dynamics with heavy water ((2)H2O)-based metabolic labeling and high resolution mass spectrometry. We reported the half-lives and synthesis rates of several proteins in the two cardiac mitochondrial subpopulations, subsarcolemmal and interfibrillar (SSM and IFM), in Sprague Dawley rats. In the present study, we tested the hypothesis that the mitochondrial protein synthesis rate is reduced in heart failure, with possible differential changes in SSM versus IFM. Six to seven week old male Sprague Dawley rats underwent transverse aortic constriction (TAC) and developed moderate heart failure after 22weeks. Heart failure and sham rats of the same age received heavy water (5% in drinking water) for up to 80days. Cardiac SSM and IFM were isolated from both groups and the proteins were separated by 1D gel electrophoresis. Heart failure reduced protein content and increased the turnover rate of several proteins involved in fatty acid oxidation, electron transport chain and ATP synthesis, while it decreased the turnover of other proteins, including pyruvate dehydrogenase subunit in IFM, but not in SSM. Because of these bidirectional changes, the average overall half-life of proteins was not altered by heart failure in both SSM and IFM. The kinetic measurements of individual mitochondrial proteins presented in this study may contribute to a better understanding of the mechanisms responsible for mitochondrial alterations in the failing heart. PMID:24995939

  11. A Novel, Unbiased Analysis Approach for Investigating Population Dynamics: A Case Study on Calanus finmarchicus and Its Decline in the North Sea

    PubMed Central

    Papworth, Danny J.; Marini, Simone; Conversi, Alessandra

    2016-01-01

    Marine populations are controlled by a series of drivers, pertaining to both the physical environment and the biological environment (trophic predator-prey interactions). There is heated debate over drivers, especially when trying to understand the causes of major ecosystem events termed regime shifts. In this work, we have researched and developed a novel methodology based on Genetic Programming (GP) for distinguishing which drivers can influence species abundance. This methodology benefits of having no a priori assumptions either on the ecological parameters used or on the underlying mathematical relationships among them. We have validated this methodology applying it to the North Sea pelagic ecosystem. We use the target species Calanus finmarchicus, a key copepod in temperate and subarctic ecosystems, along with 86 biological, hydrographical and climatic time series, ranging from local water nutrients and fish predation, to large scale climate pressure patterns. The chosen study area is the central North Sea, from 1972 to 2011, during which period there was an ecological regime shift. The GP based analysis identified 3 likely drivers of C. finmarchicus abundance, which highlights the importance of considering both physical and trophic drivers: temperature, North Sea circulation (net flow into the North Atlantic), and predation (herring). No large scale climate patterns were selected, suggesting that when there is availability of both data types, local drivers are more important. The results produced by the GP based procedure are consistent with the literature published to date, and validate the use of GP for interpreting species dynamics. We propose that this methodology holds promises for the highly non-linear field of ecology. PMID:27366910

  12. A Novel, Unbiased Analysis Approach for Investigating Population Dynamics: A Case Study on Calanus finmarchicus and Its Decline in the North Sea.

    PubMed

    Papworth, Danny J; Marini, Simone; Conversi, Alessandra

    2016-01-01

    Marine populations are controlled by a series of drivers, pertaining to both the physical environment and the biological environment (trophic predator-prey interactions). There is heated debate over drivers, especially when trying to understand the causes of major ecosystem events termed regime shifts. In this work, we have researched and developed a novel methodology based on Genetic Programming (GP) for distinguishing which drivers can influence species abundance. This methodology benefits of having no a priori assumptions either on the ecological parameters used or on the underlying mathematical relationships among them. We have validated this methodology applying it to the North Sea pelagic ecosystem. We use the target species Calanus finmarchicus, a key copepod in temperate and subarctic ecosystems, along with 86 biological, hydrographical and climatic time series, ranging from local water nutrients and fish predation, to large scale climate pressure patterns. The chosen study area is the central North Sea, from 1972 to 2011, during which period there was an ecological regime shift. The GP based analysis identified 3 likely drivers of C. finmarchicus abundance, which highlights the importance of considering both physical and trophic drivers: temperature, North Sea circulation (net flow into the North Atlantic), and predation (herring). No large scale climate patterns were selected, suggesting that when there is availability of both data types, local drivers are more important. The results produced by the GP based procedure are consistent with the literature published to date, and validate the use of GP for interpreting species dynamics. We propose that this methodology holds promises for the highly non-linear field of ecology. PMID:27366910

  13. Spatial Structures of the Environment and of Dispersal Impact Species Distribution in Competitive Metacommunities

    PubMed Central

    Ai, Dexiecuo; Gravel, Dominique; Chu, Chengjin; Wang, Gang

    2013-01-01

    The correspondence between species distribution and the environment depends on species’ ability to track favorable environmental conditions (via dispersal) and to maintain competitive hierarchy against the constant influx of migrants (mass effect) and demographic stochasticity (ecological drift). Here we report a simulation study of the influence of landscape structure on species distribution. We consider lottery competition for space in a spatially heterogeneous environment, where the landscape is represented as a network of localities connected by dispersal. We quantified the contribution of neutrality and species sorting to their spatial distribution. We found that neutrality increases and the strength of species-sorting decreases with the centrality of a community in the landscape when the average dispersal among communities is low, whereas the opposite was found at elevated dispersal. We also found that the strength of species-sorting increases with environmental heterogeneity. Our results illustrate that spatial structure of the environment and of dispersal must be taken into account for understanding species distribution. We stress the importance of spatial geographic structure on the relative importance of niche vs. neutral processes in controlling community dynamics. PMID:23874815

  14. Terminal decline in motor function.

    PubMed

    Wilson, Robert S; Segawa, Eisuke; Buchman, Aron S; Boyle, Patricia A; Hizel, Loren P; Bennett, David A

    2012-12-01

    The study aim was to test the hypothesis that motor function undergoes accelerated decline proximate to death. As part of a longitudinal clinical-pathologic study, 124 older Roman Catholic nuns, priests, and monks completed at least 7 annual clinical evaluations, died, and underwent brain autopsy and uniform neuropathologic examination. Each evaluation included administration of 11 motor tests and 19 cognitive tests from which global measures of motor and cognitive function were derived. The global motor measure (baseline M = 0.82, SD = 0.21) declined a mean 0.024 unit per year (95% confidence interval [CI]: -0.032, -0.016) until a mean of 2.46 years (95% CI: -2.870, -2.108) before death when rate of decline increased nearly fivefold to -0.117 unit per year (95% CI: -0.140, -0.097). The global cognitive measure (baseline M = 0.07, SD = 0.45) declined a mean of 0.027-unit per year (95% CI: -0.041, -0.014) until a mean of 2.76 years (95% CI: -3.157, -2.372) before death when rate of decline increased more than 13-fold to -0.371 unit per year (95% CI: -0.443, -0.306). Onset of terminal motor decline was highly correlated with onset of terminal cognitive decline (r = .94, 95% CI: 0.81, 0.99), but rates of motor and cognitive change were not strongly correlated (preterminal r = .20, 95% CI: -0.05, 0.38; terminal r = .34, 95% CI: 0.03, 0.62). Higher level of plaques and tangles was associated with earlier onset of terminal decline in motor function, but no pathologic measures were associated with rate of preterminal or terminal motor decline. The results demonstrate that motor and cognitive functions both undergo a period of accelerated decline in the last few years of life. PMID:22612603

  15. [Forest degradation/decline: research and practice].

    PubMed

    Zhu, Jiao-Jun; Li, Feng-Qin

    2007-07-01

    As one of the most critical environmental problems in the 21st century, forest degradation has been facing worldwide. There are many definitions about forest degradation, but its common features are the permanent loss of forests, stand structure destructed, forest quality decreased, and forest functions lowered. Forest decline or tree decline in fact is one of the causes of forest degradation, which includes the general reduction of trees in vigor, low level growth of trees in productivity, death of trees, and even, decline of soil fertility. Many researches indicated that deforestation is the permanent loss of forests in area, which is shifted to other land uses. Deforestation is the product of the interactions between environmental, social, economic, cultural, and political forces at work in any given country/region, and thus, more and more attention is focused on the negative socioeconomic and environmental effects after forest degradation, especially on the reduction of forest area induced by deforestation. The effects of any decisions or policies in national and international levels on forest degradation induced by deforestation have been paid attention as well. How to make efforts and strengthen the worldwide cooperation to combat the forest degradation induced by deforestation must be challenged to find appropriate solutions. There are many researches on forest decline, because of its complexity and uncertainties. The major causes of forest decline include: 1) pollution from both industry and agriculture, 2) stress factors, e.g., desiccation, 3) changes in stand dynamics, 4) decline disease of forest or diseases of complex etiology, 5) degradation of productivity and/or soil fertility in pure plantation forests. Forest degradation in China is similar to that all over the world, but with the characteristics in forest components, i.e., 1) secondary forests are the major forest resources, 2) China has the most plantation forests in the world, some of which have

  16. Predicting Succession under Conditions of Enrollment Decline.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Berger, Michael A.

    1984-01-01

    Using 56 school districts that experienced enrollment declines, this study describes the variables in superintendent succession amidst declining enrollments and locates the strongest predictors of succession. (JW)

  17. American Higher Education in Decline.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ashworth, Kenneth H.

    The decline in the quality of American higher education over the past several decades and the ramifications of this phenomena are discussed in this book. It is suggested that in responding to modern egalitarianism and the need to attract students, colleges and universities have initiated innovative programs, noncampuses, and nontraditional degrees…

  18. Environmental Decline and Organizational Response.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Zammuto, Raymond F.; Cameron, Kim S.

    1985-01-01

    A management model uses a population perspective that examines types of change occurring in the environment of populations of organizations and results in four kinds of decline (erosion, contraction, dissolution, and collapse). It is used to explain several population-related organizational phenomena. (MSE)

  19. Decline of the oil cartel

    SciTech Connect

    Fieleke, N.S.

    1986-07-01

    A review of the development that led to the current decline in oil prices concludes that sharp relative price changes have been a major source of world economic instability for the past 13 years. The results for oil-importing countries have been cycles of inflation and contraction followed by inflation and rapid growth. Some see the recent price decline as an effort by OPEC to regain enough power to bring about an eventual price rise. Although past price and production relationships indicate that OPEC has operated as a cartel, the author sees current efforts to persuade non-OPEC producers to lower their production as an indication of weakness. The Strategic Petroleum Reserve could help the US cope with any future supply disruption. 7 figures, 3 tables.

  20. Women who decline breast screening.

    PubMed

    Maclean, U; Sinfield, D; Klein, S; Harnden, B

    1984-12-01

    The health related behaviour and attitudes of a random sample of 125 women aged 45-64 who declined to accept an invitation to attend a breast screening clinic are described. The women differed from attenders in their socioeconomic class and in their customary use of measures to promote health. They were basically unsympathetic towards the idea of screening and the invitation had caused them considerable anxiety. Policy implications are raised. PMID:6512479

  1. Women who decline breast screening.

    PubMed Central

    Maclean, U; Sinfield, D; Klein, S; Harnden, B

    1984-01-01

    The health related behaviour and attitudes of a random sample of 125 women aged 45-64 who declined to accept an invitation to attend a breast screening clinic are described. The women differed from attenders in their socioeconomic class and in their customary use of measures to promote health. They were basically unsympathetic towards the idea of screening and the invitation had caused them considerable anxiety. Policy implications are raised. PMID:6512479

  2. Emergence and decline of scientific paradigms.

    PubMed

    Bornholdt, S; Jensen, M H; Sneppen, K

    2011-02-01

    Scientific paradigms have a tendency to rise fast and decline slowly. This asymmetry reflects the difficulty in developing a truly original idea, compared to the ease at which a concept can be eroded by numerous modifications. Here we formulate a model for the emergence and spread of ideas which deals with this asymmetry by constraining the ability of agents to return to already abandoned concepts. The model exhibits a fairly regular pattern of global paradigm shifts, where older paradigms are eroded and subsequently replaced by new ones. The model sets the theme for a new class of pattern formation models, where local dynamics breaks the detailed balance in a way that prevents old states from defending themselves against new nucleating or invading states. The model allows for frozen events in terms of the coexistence of multiple metastable states. PMID:21405444

  3. Emergence and Decline of Scientific Paradigms

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bornholdt, S.; Jensen, M. H.; Sneppen, K.

    2011-02-01

    Scientific paradigms have a tendency to rise fast and decline slowly. This asymmetry reflects the difficulty in developing a truly original idea, compared to the ease at which a concept can be eroded by numerous modifications. Here we formulate a model for the emergence and spread of ideas which deals with this asymmetry by constraining the ability of agents to return to already abandoned concepts. The model exhibits a fairly regular pattern of global paradigm shifts, where older paradigms are eroded and subsequently replaced by new ones. The model sets the theme for a new class of pattern formation models, where local dynamics breaks the detailed balance in a way that prevents old states from defending themselves against new nucleating or invading states. The model allows for frozen events in terms of the coexistence of multiple metastable states.

  4. Functional decline in older adults.

    PubMed

    Colón-Emeric, Cathleen S; Whitson, Heather E; Pavon, Juliessa; Hoenig, Helen

    2013-09-15

    Functional disability is common in older adults. It is often episodic and is associated with a high risk of subsequent health decline. The severity of disability is determined by physical impairments caused by underlying medical conditions, and by external factors such as social support, financial support, and the environment. When multiple health conditions are present, they often result in greater disability than expected because the patient's ability to compensate for one problem may be affected by comorbid conditions. Evaluation of functional disability is most effective when the physician determines the course of the disability, associated symptoms, effects on specific activities, and coping mechanisms the patient uses to compensate for the functional problem. Underlying health conditions, impairments, and contextual factors (e.g., finances, social support) should be identified using validated screening tools. Interventions should focus on increasing the patient's capacity to cope with task demands and reducing the demands of the task itself. Interventions for functional decline in older adults are almost always multifactorial because they must address multiple conditions, impairments, and contextual factors. PMID:24134046

  5. Dietary Factors and Cognitive Decline

    PubMed Central

    Smith, P.J.; Blumenthal, J.A.

    2015-01-01

    Cognitive decline is an increasingly important public health problem, with more than 100 million adults worldwide projected to develop dementia by 2050. Accordingly, there has been an increased interest in preventive strategies that diminish this risk. It has been recognized that lifestyle factors including dietary patterns, may be important in the prevention of cognitive decline and dementia in later life. Several dietary components have been examined, including antioxidants, fatty acids, and B vitamins. In addition, whole dietary eating plans, including the Mediterranean diet (MeDi), and the Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension (DASH) diet, with and without weight loss, have become areas of increasing interest. Although prospective epidemiological studies have observed that antioxidants, fatty acids, and B vitamins are associated with better cognitive functioning, randomized clinical trials have generally failed to confirm the value of any specific dietary component in improving neurocognition. Several randomized trials have examined the impact of changing ‘whole’ diets on cognitive outcomes. The MeDi and DASH diets offer promising preliminary results, but data are limited and more research in this area is needed. PMID:26900574

  6. [Strategic factors in fertility decline].

    PubMed

    Genne, M

    1984-01-01

    This study examines income as an important but not exclusive determinant of demographic evolution, using the theoretical model of the demographic transition. Researches at the Population Center at Princeton and the authors of the Bachue dimulation models among others believe that acceleration of fertility decline can be achieved by a more equitable distribution of income, goods, and knowledge. Among the works of this school of thought, the studies of r. Repetto which give quantitative expression to the correlation are particularly interesting when they are placed in the framework of the demographic transition. Even if the significance of all factors involved in the fertility decline has not been specified, income distribution plays a certain role regardless of the definition given to transition: the classic model, the revised definition of the Princeton group, or the equitable development model. A study of the Hungarian case between 1870-1910 bears out the relationship. It is equally interesting to note that developing countries currently have a demographic configuration similar to that of European countries in general, and of Hungary in particular, as of the beginning of the last century, and that a more equalitarian distribution of land or of income could bring about the same effects over time. PMID:12313296

  7. Arctic sea ice decline: Introduction

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    DeWeaver, Eric T.

    By any measure, the loss of Arctic sea ice cover in September 2007 was spectacular. The National Snow and Ice Data Center (NSIDC) called it a loss "the size of Alaska and Texas combined," in comparison to the 1979-2000 September mean. Record-breaking minima in sea ice extent are not unexpected, given the declining trend of the past 30 years and its recent acceleration [e.g., Meier et al., 2007; Deser and Teng, this volume]. But the 2007 minimum was remarkable even compared to the decline, a full four standard deviations below the trend line (H. Stern, quoted by Schweiger et al. [2008]). Kerr [2007] reported an Alaska-sized loss compared to the previous record low in 2005, which was itself an Alaska-sized retreat from the value at the beginning of the satellite era in 1979. Deser and Teng point out that the loss between September 2006 and September 2007 is as large as the entire September extent loss from 1979 to 2006.

  8. Adult attachment and declining birthrates.

    PubMed

    Draper, Thomas W; Holman, Thomas B; White, Whitney; Grandy, Shannon

    2007-02-01

    Attachment scores for 658 young adults living in the U.S.A. were obtained using the Experiences in Close Relationships scale. The participants came from a subsample of the RELATE data set, who had also filled out the adult attachment measure. Those young adults living in Utah County, Utah, an area of the country with a higher than normal birthrate (88% members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints), also had higher than average adult attachment scores. While the methodology was not sufficient to assess causal direction nor eliminate the possibility of unidentified influences, an undiscussed psychological factor, adult attachment, may play a role in the numerical declines observed among nonimmigrant communities in the USA and Europe. PMID:17450996

  9. Declining Sunshine for Phoenix Lander

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2008-01-01

    The yellow line on this graphic indicates the number of hours of sunlight each sol, or Martian day, at the Phoenix landing site's far-northern latitude, beginning with the entire Martian day (about 24 hours and 40 minutes) for the first 90 sols, then declining to no sunlight by about sol 300. The blue tick mark indicates that on Sol 124 (Sept. 29, 2008), the sun is above the horizon for about 20 hours.

    The brown vertical bar represents the period from Nov. 18 to Dec. 24, 2008, around the 'solar conjunction,' when the sun is close to the line between Mars and Earth, affecting communications.

    The green vertical rectangle represents the period from February to November 2009 when the Phoenix lander is expected to be encased in carbon-dioxide ice.

  10. Organizational Effects of Decline and Turbulence.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Cameron, Kim S.; And Others

    1987-01-01

    Clarifies the meaning of organizational decline by delimiting it from related constructs (turbulence, stagnation, and environmental decline). Investigates certain organizational attributes associated with turbulence and decline in 334 higher education institutions over a six-year period. Results suggest that organizational attributes associated…

  11. Matching Managerial Strategies to Conditions of Decline.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Cameron, Kim; Zammuto, Raymond

    1984-01-01

    A typology of decline based on institutional characteristics is suggested as a basis for matching managerial response to specific decline situations. The four decline types identified are erosion, contraction, dissolution, and collapse. The model is also suggested as a means for diagnosing organizational environments. (MSE)

  12. [Ozone decline and UV increase].

    PubMed

    Winkler, P; Trepte, S

    2004-02-01

    The following results have been obtained from long-term observations on the ozone layer and UV at the Meteorological Observatory Hohenpeigenberg:The seasonally varying decline of the ozone layer determines the maximum exposure to UV. Since ozone decline shows the highest rates in the spring months the UV exposure has most strongly increased in this time of the year. This is especially important because in spring the human skin is not adapted to UV exposure. Weather changes from day to day can induce rapid ozone reductions in spring about -30% which in turn is followed by an increase in UV of about 40%. Clouds, especially the transparent cirrus clouds (high clouds consisting of ice particles) have increased in frequency during spring and fall while a decrease is observed in summer. This change in cloudiness reduces the daily UV dose in spring and fall while it is enhanced in summer. With increasing height above sea level UV rises by roughly 10% per 1000 m (rule of thumb). Snow reflects the UV-radiation by up to 80% enhancing the UV-doses at relevant conditions. Strong volcano eruptions destroy ozone in the stratosphere additionally during 1-2 years after the eruption. Therafter the ozone layer recovers. In April 1993, after the eruption of Mt. Pinatubo (1991), the UV burden was still 40% higher than average. Miniholes and streamers can appear unexpected on a short-time scale and cross over Central Europe within 1-2 days, thus enhancing UV irradiation. The human skin reacts to UV exposure depending on the type of skin. The campaign "Sonne(n) mit Verstand" of the Bavarian Ministries for Environment, for Health and for Education informs about the danger of UV radiation (see www.sonne-mit-ver-stand.de). The German Weather Service informs the public on present developments of the ozone layer and relevant topics byits ozone bulletin, which is also available via internet under (www.dwd.de/deFundE/Observator/MOHp/hp2/ozon/bulletin.htm). PMID:14770335

  13. Responses of Riparian Cottonwoods to Alluvial Water Table Declines

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Scott, Michael L.; Shafroth, Patrick B.; Auble, Gregor T.

    1999-04-01

    Human demands for surface and shallow alluvial groundwater have contributed to the loss, fragmentation, and simplification of riparian ecosystems. Populus species typically dominate riparian ecosystems throughout arid and semiarid regions of North American and efforts to minimize loss of riparian Populus requires an integrated understanding of the role of surface and groundwater dynamics in the establishment of new, and maintenance of existing, stands. In a controlled, whole-stand field experiment, we quantified responses of Populus morphology, growth, and mortality to water stress resulting from sustained water table decline following in-channel sand mining along an ephemeral sandbed stream in eastern Colorado, USA. We measured live crown volume, radial stem growth, annual branch increment, and mortality of 689 live Populus deltoides subsp. monilifera stems over four years in conjunction with localized water table declines. Measurements began one year prior to mining and included trees in both affected and unaffected areas. Populus demonstrated a threshold response to water table declines in medium alluvial sands; sustained declines ≥1 m produced leaf desiccation and branch dieback within three weeks and significant declines in live crown volume, stem growth, and 88% mortality over a three-year period. Declines in live crown volume proved to be a significant leading indicator of mortality in the following year. A logistic regression of tree survival probability against the prior year's live crown volume was significant (-2 log likelihood = 270, χ2 with 1 df = 232, P < 0.0001) and trees with absolute declines in live crown volume of ≥30 during one year had survival probabilities <0.5 in the following year. In contrast, more gradual water table declines of ~0.5 m had no measurable effect on mortality, stem growth, or live crown volume and produced significant declines only in annual branch growth increments. Developing quantitative information on the timing and

  14. Mortality rates decline in Malaysia.

    PubMed

    1991-11-01

    Experiencing remarkable decreases in mortality rates over the past 3 decades, Malaysia currently has one of the lowest mortality rates among developing countries, a rate that compares favorably with those of developed countries. Between 1957 and 1989, the crude death rate dropped from 12.4/1000 population to 4.6. Over the same period, Malaysia recorded even greater decreases in the infant mortality rate, from 75.5/1000 births to 15.2. The Maternal mortality rate also declined from 1.48 in 1970 to 0.24 in 1988. The data indicates that mortality rates vary from state to state, and that rural areas have a higher mortality than urban areas. According to a study by the National Population and Family Development Board, the use of maternal and child health services has played an important role in reducing neonatal, perinatal, infant, child, and maternal mortality rates. Nearly all women in Malaysia receive antenatal services. While the country has achieved great gains on mortality rates, programs focusing on specific age and socioeconomic groups could lead to even greater reductions. The Minister for National Unity and Social Development, Dato Napsiah Omar, has called for the development of programs designed to improve the population's quality of life. PMID:12284509

  15. Neurocognitive decline in Alexander disease.

    PubMed

    Restrepo, June; Bernardin, Linda; Hammeke, Thomas

    2011-10-01

    Alexander disease is a neurological condition associated with prominent white matter deterioration. Its rarity and relatively rapid disease course have provided limited understanding into the cognitive effects of the illness. We report the serial neuropsychological findings of a 21-year-old with normal development and no medical history until age 9, when he experienced refractory sinusitis, stabbing headaches with vertigo, disorientation, and decline in academic and social settings. An MRI scan of the brain found acute demyelinating encephalomyelitis, with a preponderance of white matter degeneration in the bilateral frontal lobes. Interval MRIs showed continued degeneration. Confirmation of Alexander disease was made at age 20 through genetic testing. Four evaluations completed from ages 15 to 21 showed impairment across all cognitive domains. Cognitive deficits were most prominent in new learning and recent memory, executive functions, and fine motor dexterity, and less apparent in information processing and visual scanning speed. These results present evidence for a particular cognitive pattern in individuals with juvenile-onset Alexander disease. Despite extensive white matter degeneration in the frontal lobes, certain tasks associated with frontal lobe integrity were relatively preserved. Further research into the neuropsychological presentation of the subtypes of Alexander disease can enhance diagnostic clarity and treatment planning. PMID:21902566

  16. An extended patch-dynamic framework for food chains in fragmented landscapes.

    PubMed

    Liao, Jinbao; Chen, Jiehong; Ying, Zhixia; Hiebeler, David E; Nijs, Ivan

    2016-01-01

    Habitat destruction, a key determinant of species loss, can be characterized by two components, patch loss and patch fragmentation, where the former refers to the reduction in patch availability, and the latter to the division of the remaining patches. Classical metacommunity models have recently explored how food web dynamics respond to patch loss, but the effects of patch fragmentation have largely been overlooked. Here we develop an extended patch-dynamic model that tracks the patch occupancy of the various trophic links subject to colonization-extinction-predation dynamics by incorporating species dispersal with patch connectivity. We found that, in a simple food chain, species at higher trophic level become extinct sooner with increasing patch loss and fragmentation due to the constraint in resource availability, confirming the trophic rank hypothesis. Yet, effects of fragmentation on species occupancy are largely determined by patch loss, with maximal fragmentation effects occurring at intermediate patch loss. Compared to the spatially explicit simulations that we also performed, the current model with pair approximation generates similar community patterns especially in spatially clustered landscapes. Overall, our extended framework can be applied to model more complex food webs in fragmented landscapes, broadening the scope of existing metacommunity theory. PMID:27608823

  17. An extended patch-dynamic framework for food chains in fragmented landscapes

    PubMed Central

    Liao, Jinbao; Chen, Jiehong; Ying, Zhixia; Hiebeler, David E.; Nijs, Ivan

    2016-01-01

    Habitat destruction, a key determinant of species loss, can be characterized by two components, patch loss and patch fragmentation, where the former refers to the reduction in patch availability, and the latter to the division of the remaining patches. Classical metacommunity models have recently explored how food web dynamics respond to patch loss, but the effects of patch fragmentation have largely been overlooked. Here we develop an extended patch-dynamic model that tracks the patch occupancy of the various trophic links subject to colonization-extinction-predation dynamics by incorporating species dispersal with patch connectivity. We found that, in a simple food chain, species at higher trophic level become extinct sooner with increasing patch loss and fragmentation due to the constraint in resource availability, confirming the trophic rank hypothesis. Yet, effects of fragmentation on species occupancy are largely determined by patch loss, with maximal fragmentation effects occurring at intermediate patch loss. Compared to the spatially explicit simulations that we also performed, the current model with pair approximation generates similar community patterns especially in spatially clustered landscapes. Overall, our extended framework can be applied to model more complex food webs in fragmented landscapes, broadening the scope of existing metacommunity theory. PMID:27608823

  18. [Concentration or decline in Puebla?].

    PubMed

    Cabrera Becerra, V

    1993-04-01

    Some doubts have been expressed over whether the slowing pace of urbanization suggested by the 1990 census of Mexico was an accurate reflection of changing conditions, or whether it resulted from some intentional or unintended bias. Comparison of data from succeeding censuses indicates that the growth rate of the city of Puebla declined from 6.32% in 1980 to 2.63% in 1990. This work argues that, in Puebla, a trend to deconcentration of the population within the city of Puebla during the 1980s was accompanied by rapid growth in smaller and medium sized nearby cities, resulting in increased overall concentration in Puebla's metropolitan area. The absolute population of the city of Puebla increased from 772,908 in 1980 to 1,007,170 in 1990. The central area of the state of Puebla, which surrounds the city, increased its share of the state population from 51.67% in 1980 to 52.21% in 1990. The number of places with over 5000 inhabitants in the area surrounding the city of Puebla increased from 27 in 1980 to 39 in 1990. Construction of the Puebla-Atlixco highway will undoubtedly attract growth to the area southwest of Puebla. Small cities to the east of Puebla have shown significant growth although their region remains strongly rural. The same process of deconcentration of population in Puebla and concentration in its surrounding metropolitan regions can probably also be detected in patterns of investment of public funds. The trend is likely to continue through the 1990s. PMID:12346304

  19. Development and Decline of Upright Gait Stability

    PubMed Central

    Iosa, Marco; Fusco, Augusto; Morone, Giovanni; Paolucci, Stefano

    2014-01-01

    Upright gait is a peculiar characteristic of humans that requires the ability to manage upper body dynamic balance while walking, despite the perturbations that are generated by movements of the lower limbs. Most of the studies on upright gait stability have compared young adults and the elderly to determine the effects of aging. In other studies, the comparison was between healthy subjects and patients to examine specific pathologies. Fewer researches have also investigated the development of upright gait stability in children. This review discusses these studies in order to provide an overview of this relevant aspect of human locomotion. A clear trend from development to decline of upright gait stability has been depicted across the entire lifespan, from toddlers at first steps to elderly. In old individuals, even if healthy, the deterioration of skeletal muscle, combined with sensorial and cognitive performance, reduces the ability to maintain an upright trunk during walking, increasing the instability and the risk of falls. Further, the pathological causes of altered development or of a sudden loss of gait stability, as well as the environmental influence are investigated. The last part of this review is focused on the control of upper body accelerations during walking, a particularly interesting topic for the recent development of low-cost wearable accelerometers. PMID:24550829

  20. Retirement Age Declines Again in 1990s.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Gendell, Murray

    2001-01-01

    The average retirement age continued to decline in the 1990s after having leveled off during the preceding 10-15 years. The resumption of the decline is attributed largely to a rise in the labor force participation rate of older men and women between the mid-1980s and 2000. (Author/JOW)

  1. Aging, Terminal Decline, and Terminal Drop

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Palmore, Erdman; Cleveland, William

    1976-01-01

    Data from a 20-year longitudinal study of persons over 60 were analyzed by step-wise multiple regression to test for declines in function with age, for terminal decline (linear relationship to time before death), and for terminal drop (curvilinear relationship to time before death). There were no substantial terminal drop effects. (Author)

  2. Reversing Africa's Decline. Worldwatch Paper 65.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Brown, Lester R.; Wolf, Edward C.

    This paper highlights some of the themes that any successful strategy to reverse the decline of Africa must embrace. Africa is a continent experiencing a breakdown in the relationship between people and their natural support systems. Famine and the threat of famine are among the manifestations of this breakdown. This decline can be reversed. To do…

  3. Novelty Seeking in Adulthood: Increases Accompany Decline

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Reio, Thomas G., Jr.; Choi, Namok

    2004-01-01

    Using stereotypes, researchers have predicted that novelty seeking declines in adulthood. Through this cross-sectional study, the authors revealed that only the external sensational type of novelty seeking declined, whereas the internal sensational and internal and external cognitive types remained stable or increased. A population of 233 adults…

  4. 31 CFR 240.7 - Declination protest.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-07-01

    ..., which can be found at http://www.fms.treas.gov. Treasury will not consider any protest unless it is received within 90 days from the declination date. (d) Review of a declination protest. The responsible FMS... where it is not possible to render a decision within 60 days, the responsible FMS Director, or...

  5. 31 CFR 240.7 - Declination protest.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-07-01

    ..., which can be found at http://www.fms.treas.gov. Treasury will not consider any protest unless it is received within 90 days from the declination date. (d) Review of a declination protest. The responsible FMS... where it is not possible to render a decision within 60 days, the responsible FMS Director, or...

  6. Evidence of disease-related amphibian decline in Colorado

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Muths, Erin; Corn, Paul Stephen; Pessier, Allan P.; Green, D. Earl

    2003-01-01

    The recent discovery of a pathogenic fungus (Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis) associated with declines of frogs in the American and Australian tropics, suggests that at least the proximate cause, may be known for many previously unexplained amphibian declines. We have monitored boreal toads in Colorado since 1991 at four sites using capturea??recapture of adults and counts of egg masses to examine the dynamics of this metapopulation. Numbers of male toads declined in 1996 and 1999 with annual survival rate averaging 78% from 1991 to 1994, 45% in 1995 and 3% between 1998 and 1999. Numbers of egg masses also declined. An etiological diagnosis of chytridiomycosis consistent with infections by the genus Batrachochytrium was made in six wild adult toads. Characteristic histomorphological features (i.e. intracellular location, shape of thalli, presence of discharge tubes and rhizoids) of chytrid organisms, and host tissue response (acanthosis and hyperkeratosis) were observed in individual toads. These characteristics were indistinguishable from previously reported mortality events associated with chytrid fungus. We also observed epizootiological features consistent with mortality events associated with chytrid fungus: an increase in the ratio of female:male toads captured, an apparent spread of mortalities within the metapopulation and mortalities restricted to post metamorphic animals. Eleven years of population data suggest that this metapopulation of toads is in danger of extinction, pathological and epizootiological evidence indicates that B. dendrobatidis has played a proximate role in this process

  7. Climate Variations and Alaska Tundra Vegetation Productivity Declines in Spring

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bhatt, U. S.; Walker, D. A.; Bieniek, P.; Raynolds, M. K.; Epstein, H. E.; Comiso, J. C.; Pinzon, J. E.; Tucker, C. J.

    2015-12-01

    While sea ice has continued to decline, vegetation productivity increases have declined particularly during spring in Alaska as well as many parts of the Arctic tundra. To understand the processes behind these features we investigate spring climate variations that includes temperature, circulation patterns, and snow cover to determine how these may be contributing to spring browning. This study employs remotely sensed weekly 25-km sea ice concentration, weekly surface temperature, and bi-weekly NDVI from 1982 to 2014. Maximum NDVI (MaxNDVI, Maximum Normalized Difference Vegetation Index), Time Integrated NDVI (TI-NDVI), Summer Warmth Index (SWI, sum of degree months above freezing during May-August), atmospheric reanalysis data, dynamically downscaled climate data, meteorological station data, and snow water equivalent (GlobSnow, assimilated snow data set). We analyzed the data for the full period (1982-2014) and for two sub-periods (1982-1998 and 1999-2014), which were chosen based on the declining Alaska SWI since 1998. MaxNDVI has increased from 1982-2014 over most of the Arctic but has declined from 1999 to 2014 southwest Alaska. TI-NDVI has trends that are similar to those for MaxNDVI for the full period but display widespread declines over the 1999-2014 period. Therefore, as the MaxNDVI has continued to increase overall for the Arctic, TI-NDVI has been declining since 1999 and these declines are particularly noteworthy during spring in Alaska. Spring declines in Alaska have been linked to increased spring snow cover that can delay greenup (Bieniek et al. 2015) but recent ground observations suggest that after an initial warming and greening, late season freezing temperature are damaging the plants. The late season freezing temperature hypothesis will be explored with meteorological climate/weather data sets for Alaska tundra regions. References P.A. Bieniek, US Bhatt, DA Walker, MK Raynolds, JC Comiso, HE Epstein, JE Pinzon, CJ Tucker, RL Thoman, H Tran, N M

  8. Theoretical Analysis of Maximum Flow Declination Rate versus Maximum Area Declination Rate in Phonation

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Titze, Ingo R.

    2006-01-01

    Purpose: Maximum flow declination rate (MFDR) in the glottis is known to correlate strongly with vocal intensity in voicing. This declination, or negative slope on the glottal airflow waveform, is in part attributable to the maximum area declination rate (MADR) and in part to the overall inertia of the air column of the vocal tract (lungs to…

  9. Patch quality and context, but not patch number, drive multi-scale colonization dynamics in experimental aquatic landscapes.

    PubMed

    Resetarits, William J; Binckley, Christopher A

    2013-11-01

    Colonization and extinction are primary drivers of local population dynamics, community structure, and spatial patterns of biological diversity. Existing paradigms of island biogeography, metapopulation biology, and metacommunity ecology, as well as habitat management and conservation biology based on those paradigms, emphasize patch size, number, and isolation as primary characteristics influencing colonization and extinction. Habitat selection theory suggests that patch quality could rival size, number, and isolation in determining rates of colonization and resulting community structure. We used naturally colonized experimental landscapes to address four issues: (a) how do colonizing aquatic beetles respond to variation in patch number, (b) how do they respond to variation in patch quality, (c) does patch context affect colonization dynamics, and (d) at what spatial scales do beetles respond to habitat variation? Increasing patch number had no effect on per patch colonization rates, while patch quality and context were critical in determining colonization rates and resulting patterns of abundance and species richness at multiple spatial scales. We graphically illustrate how variation in immigration rates driven by perceived predation risk (habitat quality) can further modify dynamics of the equilibrium theory of island biogeography beyond predator-driven effects on extinction rates. Our data support the importance of patch quality and context as primary determinants of colonization rate, occupancy, abundance, and resulting patterns of species richness, and reinforce the idea that management of metapopulations for species preservation, and metacommunities for local and regional diversity, should incorporate habitat quality into the predictive equation. PMID:23609801

  10. Coin hoards speak of population declines in Ancient Rome.

    PubMed

    Turchin, Peter; Scheidel, Walter

    2009-10-13

    In times of violence, people tend to hide their valuables, which are later recovered unless the owners had been killed or driven away. Thus, the temporal distribution of unrecovered coin hoards is an excellent proxy for the intensity of internal warfare. We use this relationship to resolve a long-standing controversy in Roman history. Depending on who was counted in the early Imperial censuses (adult males or the entire citizenry including women and minors), the Roman citizen population of Italy either declined, or more than doubled, during the first century BCE. This period was characterized by a series of civil wars, and historical evidence indicates that high levels of sociopolitical instability are associated with demographic contractions. We fitted a simple model quantifying the effect of instability (proxied by hoard frequency) on population dynamics to the data before 100 BCE. The model predicts declining population after 100 BCE. This suggests that the vigorous growth scenario is highly implausible. PMID:19805043

  11. Atrial Fibrillation, Cognitive Decline And Dementia

    PubMed Central

    Alonso, Alvaro; Arenas de Larriva, Antonio P.

    2016-01-01

    Atrial fibrillation (AF) is a common cardiac arrhythmia. Growing evidence supports a role for AF as a risk factor for cognitive decline and dementia. In this review, we summarize epidemiologic observations linking AF with cognitive outcomes, describe potential mechanisms, and explore the impact of AF treatments on cognitive decline and dementia. Community-based, observational studies show a consistent higher rate of cognitive decline and risk of dementia in persons with AF. These associations are partly due to the increased risk of clinical stroke in AF, but other mechanisms, including incidence of silent cerebral infarcts, microbleeds, and cerebral hypoperfusion, are likely additional contributors. Adequate oral anticoagulation and improved management of the overall cardiovascular risk profile in persons with AF offer the promise of reducing the impact of AF on cognitive decline and dementia. PMID:27547248

  12. A Decline in Solar Cycle Strength

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chapman, G. A.; de Toma, G.; Cookson, A.

    2013-12-01

    The strength of solar activity appears to be in decline over the past three solar cycles. The decline is seen in sunspot area, facular/network area and the sunspot number. In addition, cycle 24 has been unusual in that many, if not most, of the bipolar sunspot groups have had only a leader spot with no follower spot. This research was partially supported by grants from NSF and NASA. Corrected spot area from CFDT1 at the San Fernando Observatory

  13. Problems Associated with Declining National Oil Production

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jackson, J. S.

    2009-12-01

    Forecasts of peak oil production have focussed on the global impacts of declining production. Meanwhile, national oil production has declined in 20 countries, leading to local problems that receive little comment outside of the effected regions. Two problems deserve wider recognition: declining state revenues and fuel substitution. Most oil producing countries with large reserves adopted licensing practices that provide significant revenues to the host governments such that oil revenues generate from 40 to 80 percent of total government funds. Typically these governments allocate a fraction of this revenue to their state oil companies, utilizing the remainder for other activities. As oil revenues decline with falling production, host governments face a dilemma: either to increase state oil company budgets in order to stem the decline, or to starve the state oil company while maintaining other government programs. The declining oil revenues in these states can significantly reduce the government's ability to address important national issues. Mexico, Indonesia, and Yemen illustrate this situation in its early phases. Fuel substitution occurs whenever one fuel proves less expensive than another. The substitution of coal for wood in the eighteenth century and oil for coal in the twentieth century are classic examples. China and India appear to be at peak oil production, while their economies generate increasing demand for energy. Both countries are substituting coal and natural gas for oil with attendant environmental impacts. Coal-to-liquids projects are proposed in in both China, which will require significant water resources if they are executed. These examples suggest that forecasting the impact of peak oil at a regional level requires more than an assessment of proven-probable-possible reserves and a forecast of supply-demand scenarios. A range of government responses to declining oil income scenarios must also be considered, together with scenarios describing

  14. Local bumble bee decline linked to recovery of honey bees, drought effects on floral resources.

    PubMed

    Thomson, Diane M

    2016-10-01

    Time series of abundances are critical for understanding how abiotic factors and species interactions affect population dynamics, but are rarely linked with experiments and also scarce for bee pollinators. This gap is important given concerns about declines in some bee species. I monitored honey bee (Apis mellifera) and bumble bee (Bombus spp.) foragers in coastal California from 1999, when feral A. mellifera populations were low due to Varroa destructor, until 2014. Apis mellifera increased substantially, except between 2006 and 2011, coinciding with declines in managed populations. Increases in A. mellifera strongly correlated with declines in Bombus and reduced diet overlap between them, suggesting resource competition consistent with past experimental results. Lower Bombus numbers also correlated with diminished floral resources. Declines in floral abundances were associated with drought and reduced spring rainfall. These results illustrate how competition with an introduced species may interact with climate to drive local decline of native pollinators. PMID:27539950

  15. Periodontitis and Cognitive Decline in Alzheimer's Disease.

    PubMed

    Ide, Mark; Harris, Marina; Stevens, Annette; Sussams, Rebecca; Hopkins, Viv; Culliford, David; Fuller, James; Ibbett, Paul; Raybould, Rachel; Thomas, Rhodri; Puenter, Ursula; Teeling, Jessica; Perry, V Hugh; Holmes, Clive

    2016-01-01

    Periodontitis is common in the elderly and may become more common in Alzheimer's disease because of a reduced ability to take care of oral hygiene as the disease progresses. Elevated antibodies to periodontal bacteria are associated with an increased systemic pro-inflammatory state. Elsewhere raised serum pro-inflammatory cytokines have been associated with an increased rate of cognitive decline in Alzheimer's disease. We hypothesized that periodontitis would be associated with increased dementia severity and a more rapid cognitive decline in Alzheimer's disease. We aimed to determine if periodontitis in Alzheimer's disease is associated with both increased dementia severity and cognitive decline, and an increased systemic pro inflammatory state. In a six month observational cohort study 60 community dwelling participants with mild to moderate Alzheimer's Disease were cognitively assessed and a blood sample taken for systemic inflammatory markers. Dental health was assessed by a dental hygienist, blind to cognitive outcomes. All assessments were repeated at six months. The presence of periodontitis at baseline was not related to baseline cognitive state but was associated with a six fold increase in the rate of cognitive decline as assessed by the ADAS-cog over a six month follow up period. Periodontitis at baseline was associated with a relative increase in the pro-inflammatory state over the six month follow up period. Our data showed that periodontitis is associated with an increase in cognitive decline in Alzheimer's Disease, independent to baseline cognitive state, which may be mediated through effects on systemic inflammation. PMID:26963387

  16. Global phytoplankton decline over the past century.

    PubMed

    Boyce, Daniel G; Lewis, Marlon R; Worm, Boris

    2010-07-29

    In the oceans, ubiquitous microscopic phototrophs (phytoplankton) account for approximately half the production of organic matter on Earth. Analyses of satellite-derived phytoplankton concentration (available since 1979) have suggested decadal-scale fluctuations linked to climate forcing, but the length of this record is insufficient to resolve longer-term trends. Here we combine available ocean transparency measurements and in situ chlorophyll observations to estimate the time dependence of phytoplankton biomass at local, regional and global scales since 1899. We observe declines in eight out of ten ocean regions, and estimate a global rate of decline of approximately 1% of the global median per year. Our analyses further reveal interannual to decadal phytoplankton fluctuations superimposed on long-term trends. These fluctuations are strongly correlated with basin-scale climate indices, whereas long-term declining trends are related to increasing sea surface temperatures. We conclude that global phytoplankton concentration has declined over the past century; this decline will need to be considered in future studies of marine ecosystems, geochemical cycling, ocean circulation and fisheries. PMID:20671703

  17. Subjective Cognitive Decline: Self and Informant Comparisons

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Kewei; Locke, Dona E.C.; Lee, Wendy; Roontiva, Auttawut; Bandy, Dan; Fleisher, Adam S.; Reiman, Eric M.

    2013-01-01

    Background It is unclear whether self or informant-based subjective cognition better distinguishes emotional factors from early stage Alzheimer’s disease (AD). Methods 447 healthy members of the Arizona Apolipoprotein E (APOE) Cohort and their informants completed both the self and informant paired Multidimensional Assessment of Neurodegenerative Symptoms questionnaire (MANS). Results 30.6% of members and 26.2% of informants endorsed decline on the MANS. Both self and informant-based decliners had higher scores of psychological distress and slightly lower cognitive scores than nondecliners. Over the next 6.7 years, 20 developed mild cognitive impairment (MCI). Converters were older at entry than nonconverters (63.8[7.0] vs 58.8[7.3] years, p=.003), 85% were APOE e4 carriers (p<.0001), and they self-endorsed decline earlier than informants (58.9[39.2] vs 28.0[40.4] months before MCI; p=.002). Conclusions Both self and informant based subjective decline correlated with greater psychological distress, and slightly lower cognitive performance. Those with incident MCI generally self-endorsed decline earlier than informants. PMID:23562429

  18. THE HEALTH EFFECTS OF ECONOMIC DECLINE

    PubMed Central

    Catalano, Ralph; Goldman-Mellor, Sidra; Saxton, Katherine; Margerison-Zilko, Claire; Subbaraman, Meenakshi; LeWinn, Kaja; Anderson, Elizabeth

    2013-01-01

    The recent recession and lingering high unemployment will likely lead to a burst of research studying the health effects of economic decline. We aim to inform that work by summarizing empirical research concerned with those effects. We separate the studies into groups defined by questions asked, mechanisms invoked, and outcomes studied. We conclude that although much research shows that undesirable job and financial experiences increase the risk of psychological and behavioral disorder, many other suspected associations remain poorly studied or unsupported. The intuition that mortality increases when the economy declines, for example, appears wrong. We note that the research informs public health programming by identifying risk factors, such as job loss, made more frequent by economic decline. The promise that the research would identify health costs and benefits of economic policy choices, however, remains unfulfilled and will likely remain so without stronger theory and greater methodological agreement. PMID:21054175

  19. The Continuing Slow Decline of AG Pegasi

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kenyon, Scott J.; Proga, Daniel; Keyes, Charles D.

    2001-07-01

    We analyze optical and ultraviolet observations of the symbiotic binary AG Pegasi acquired during 1992-1997. The bolometric luminosity of the hot component declined by a factor of 2-3 from 1980-1985 to 1997. Since 1992, the effective temperature of the hot component may have declined by 10%-20%, but this decline is comparable to the measurement errors. Optical observations of Hβ and He I emission show a clear illumination effect, where high-energy photons from the hot component ionize the outer atmosphere of the red giant. Simple illumination models generally account for the magnitude of the optical and ultraviolet emission-line fluxes. High-ionization emission lines-[Ne V], [Mg V], and [Fe VII]-suggest mechanical heating in the outer portions of the photoionized red giant wind. This emission probably originates in a low-density region ~30-300 AU from the central binary.

  20. Managing declining yields from ageing tea plantations.

    PubMed

    Kibblewhite, Mark G; Prakash, Sudhir; Hazarika, Mridul; Burgess, Paul J; Sakrabani, Ruben

    2014-06-01

    Strong growth in the demand for tea requires further increases in the productivity of plantations. Declining or stagnant yields are commonly observed in older plantations. Possible controlling factors for yield decline are reviewed including ageing of plants, chronic disease and sub-optimal soil conditions such as excess soil acidity and low soil organic matter. Management options for addressing these factors are evaluated, including replanting. A systematic approach to decision-making about replanting is presented. Practice for replanting is reviewed and it is concluded that evidence to support a general case for replanting is limited, unless based on the introduction of more productive clones and/or better plant spacing. PMID:24464583

  1. Neural mechanisms of ageing and cognitive decline

    PubMed Central

    Bishop, Nicholas A.; Lu, Tao; Yankner, Bruce A.

    2010-01-01

    During the past century, treatments for the diseases of youth and middle age have helped raise life expectancy significantly. However, cognitive decline has emerged as one of the greatest health threats of old age, with nearly 50% of adults over the age of 85 afflicted with Alzheimer’s disease. Developing therapeutic interventions for such conditions demands a greater understanding of the processes underlying normal and pathological brain ageing. Recent advances in the biology of ageing in model organisms, together with molecular and systems-level studies of the brain, are beginning to shed light on these mechanisms and their potential roles in cognitive decline. PMID:20336135

  2. Recent Declines in Induction of Labor by Gestational Age

    MedlinePlus

    ... rates at 38 weeks of gestation declined for all maternal age groups under 40. Trends in induction ... 38 weeks declined in nearly three-quarters of all states. The largest declines in labor induction for ...

  3. Dynamics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ransom, Barbara

    1984-04-01

    Dynamics!” she said, as she buried her head deep in a book on tectonics. “Must be the key to explain what we see the ignorance of which seems to be chronic.”Convection below, then density flow and phase changes are not withstanding; Thermal gradient change and compositional range are things our minds should be commanding.

  4. Decline and conservation of bumble bees.

    PubMed

    Goulson, D; Lye, G C; Darvill, B

    2008-01-01

    Declines in bumble bee species in the past 60 years are well documented in Europe, where they are driven primarily by habitat loss and declines in floral abundance and diversity resulting from agricultural intensification. Impacts of habitat degradation and fragmentation are likely to be compounded by the social nature of bumble bees and their largely monogamous breeding system, which renders their effective population size low. Hence, populations are susceptible to stochastic extinction events and inbreeding. In North America, catastrophic declines of some bumble bee species since the 1990s are probably attributable to the accidental introduction of a nonnative parasite from Europe, a result of global trade in domesticated bumble bee colonies used for pollination of greenhouse crops. Given the importance of bumble bees as pollinators of crops and wildflowers, steps must be taken to prevent further declines. Suggested measures include tight regulation of commercial bumble bee use and targeted use of environmentally comparable schemes to enhance floristic diversity in agricultural landscapes. PMID:17803456

  5. Exploring the Global Decline of Music Education

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Aróstegui, José Luis

    2016-01-01

    This article seeks to explain the disjuncture between the decline of music education in schools and the importance music has in popular youth culture and in creativity within the new knowledge economy. The data discussed in this article have been derived from analyses of major documents on curriculum reform as well as e-mail responses from music…

  6. The Decline of Direct Newspaper Competition.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Rosse, James N.

    1980-01-01

    Describes the decline of direct newspaper competition in terms of the loss of effective newspaper market segmentation. Examines the following influences on market segmentation: shift in advertising demand, advertiser preferences for differentiated audiences, shift in subscriber demand, growth of alternative media, increasing production costs, and…

  7. Migratory diversity predicts population declines in birds.

    PubMed

    Gilroy, James J; Gill, Jennifer A; Butchart, Stuart H M; Jones, Victoria R; Franco, Aldina M A

    2016-03-01

    Declines in migratory species are a pressing concern worldwide, but the mechanisms underpinning these declines are not fully understood. We hypothesised that species with greater within-population variability in migratory movements and destinations, here termed 'migratory diversity', might be more resilient to environmental change. To test this, we related map-based metrics of migratory diversity to recent population trends for 340 European breeding birds. Species that occupy larger non-breeding ranges relative to breeding, a characteristic we term 'migratory dispersion', were less likely to be declining than those with more restricted non-breeding ranges. Species with partial migration strategies (i.e. overlapping breeding and non-breeding ranges) were also less likely to be declining than full migrants or full residents, an effect that was independent of migration distance. Recent rates of advancement in Europe-wide spring arrival date were greater for partial migrants than full migrants, suggesting that migratory diversity may also help facilitate species responses to climate change. PMID:26807694

  8. Translational gene mapping of cognitive decline

    PubMed Central

    Wilmot, Beth; McWeeney, Shannon K.; Nixon, Randal R.; Montine, Thomas J.; Laut, Jamie; Harrington, Christina A.; Kaye, Jeffrey A.; Kramer, Patricia L.

    2009-01-01

    The ability to maintain cognitive function during aging is a complex process subject to genetic and environmental influences. Alzheimer’s disease (AD) is the most common disorder causing cognitive decline among the elderly. Among those with AD, there is broad variation in the relationship between AD neuropathology and clinical manifestations of dementia. Differences in expression of genes involved in neural processing pathways may contribute to individual differences in maintenance of cognitive function. We performed whole genome expression profiling of RNA obtained from frontal cortex of clinically non-demented and AD subjects to identify genes associated with brain aging and cognitive decline. Genetic mapping information and biological function annotation were incorporated to highlight genes of particular interest. The candidate genes identified in this study were compared with those from two other studies in different tissues to identify common underlying transcriptional profiles. In addition to confirming sweeping transcriptomal differences documented in previous studies of cognitive decline, we present new evidence for up-regulation of actin-related processes and down-regulation of translation, RNA processing and localization, and vesicle-mediated transport in individuals with cognitive decline. PMID:17174450

  9. Disease management strategy for macadamia quick decline

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Trees infected with Macadamia Quick Decline (MQD) exhibit excessive sap bleeding from the trunk, frass from ambrosia beetle feeding, orange fruiting bodies of the fungus Nectria rugulosa and yellowing and browning of the leaves within the tree canopy. MQD threatens commercial and residential product...

  10. Reactions of salaried physicians to hospital decline.

    PubMed Central

    Lachman, R; Noy, S

    1996-01-01

    OBJECTIVE. To examine the Exit, Loyalty, Voice, and Neglect (ELVN) reactions of full-time salaried physicians to the decline of their employing hospital, and to explore factors possibly associated with the choice of reactions. DATA SOURCE. The study analyzes data collected in a larger survey of work attitudes of 703 hospital physicians, constituting a representative national sample of (every tenth) salaried hospital physicians in Israel. DATA COLLECTION. Data were collected through a self-administered mail questionnaire with return envelopes attached. STUDY DESIGN. A survey design was used. Survey questionnaires included composite measures of the ELVN reaction as well as of the main predictors of reaction choice: job satisfaction, hospital commitment, job investment, alternatives, tenure, and managerial and senior positions. PRINCIPAL FINDINGS. The reactions of salaried physicians to hospital decline include the whole range of ELVN reactions. The choice of each reaction was found associated with a different set of disposition, situation, and position predictors. CONCLUSIONS. The ELVN typology is relevant for examining physicians' reactions to hospital decline, which appear to extend beyond the simple stay/leave dichotomy commonly used. The reactions of Exit, Loyalty, Voice, and Neglect are different in nature, and appear to reflect the different sets of circumstances that salaried physicians may face. Implications of these results for coping with hospital decline, hospital-physician relationships, and integration strategies are discussed. PMID:8675438

  11. Student Writing: Strategies to Reverse Ongoing Decline

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Carter, Michael J.; Harper, Heather

    2013-01-01

    This article reports on the decline in writing ability skills in secondary and higher education students. The author discusses changes that have affected student writing skills over the recent decades and offers recommendations for improving these skills, such as: implementing intensive freshman writing courses; adjusting existing course…

  12. Black Rural Land Decline in the South

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    McGee, Leo; Boone, Robert

    1977-01-01

    Notes that it is widely accepted that millions of blacks who migrated from the South contributed significantly to the decline of black rural land ownership. However, the less than altruistic behavior patterns of land officials has also contributed to the loss of rural land by blacks. (Author/AM)

  13. Complexity versus certainty in understanding species’ declines

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Sundstrom, Shana M.; Allen, Craig R.

    2014-01-01

    Traditional approaches to predict species declines (e.g. government processes or IUCN Red Lists), may be too simplistic and may therefore misguide management and conservation. Using complex systems approaches that account for scale-specific patterns and processes have the potential to overcome these limitations.

  14. Predicting Succession under Conditions of Enrollment Decline.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Berger, Michael A.

    Three possible explanations for superintendent succession focus on poor administrative performance, district response strategies, and the politics of the chief executive's relationship with the school board. To analyze succession in the context of declining enrollment, a case study survey was conducted of 56 school districts whose peak enrollment…

  15. Why Employee Motivation Has Declined in America.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Grant, Philip C.

    1982-01-01

    Examines possible reasons for declining employee motivation: greater instability and diversity of values; more guaranteed rewards; inability of rewards to satisfy emerging needs; disappearing work ethic; reduced costs of failure; rising income and progressive taxation; more group production and problem solving; decreased employee loyalty; less…

  16. Management of watermelon vine decline in Florida

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Squash vein yellowing virus (SqVYV), the causal agent of watermelon vine decline (WVD) in Florida, is vectored by the silverleaf whitefly Bemisia tabaci (Biotype “B”). Watermelon plants mechanically inoculated at different growth stages from transplant to fruit formation with SqVYV developed WVD sy...

  17. Declining world fertility: trends, causes, implications.

    PubMed

    Tsui, A O; Bogue, D J

    1978-10-01

    This Bulletin examines the evidence that the world's fertility has declined in recent years, the factors that appear to have accounted for the decline, and the implications for fertility and population growth rates to the end of the century. On the basis of a compilation of estimates available for all nations of the world, the authors derive estimates which indicate that the world's total fertility rate dropped from 4.6 to 4.1 births per woman between 1968 and 1975, thanks largely to an earlier and more rapid and universal decline in the fertility of less developed countries (LDCs) than had been anticipated. Statistical analysis of available data suggests that the socioeconomic progress made by LDCs in this period was not great enough to account for more than a proportion of the fertility decline and that organized family planning programs were a major contributing factor. The authors' projections, which are compared to similar projections from the World Bank, the United Nations, and the U.S. Bureau of the Census, indicate that, by the year 2000, less than 1/5 of the world's population will be in the "red danger" circle of explosive population growth (2.1% or more annually); most LDCs will be in a phase of fertility decline; and many of them -- along with most now developed countries -- will be at or near replacement level of fertility. The authors warn that "our optimistic prediction is premised upon a big IF -- if (organized) family planning (in LDCs) continues. It remains imperative that all of the developed nations of the world continue their contribution to this program undiminished." PMID:12278135

  18. Declining scaup populations: issues, hypotheses, and research needs

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Austin, J.E.; Afton, A.D.; Anderson, M.G.; Clark, R.G.; Custer, Christine M.; Lawrence, J.S.; Pollard, J.B.; Ringelman, J.K.

    2000-01-01

    The population estimate for greater (Aythya marila) and lesser (Aythya affinis) scaup (combined) has declined dramatically since the early 1980s to record lows in 1998. The 1998 estimate of 3.47 million scaup is far below the goal of 6.3 million set in the North American Waterfowl Management Plan (NAWMP), causing concern among biologists and hunters. We summarize issuesof concern, hypotheses for factors contributing to the population decline, and research and management needs recommended by participants of the Scaup Workshop, held in September 1999. We believe that contaminants, lower female survival, and reduced recruitment due to changes in food resources or breedingground habitats are primary factors contributing to the decline. These factors are not mutually exclusive but likely interact across seasons. Workshop participants identified seven action items. We need to further delineate where declines in breeding populations have occurred, with a primary focus on the western Canadian boreal forest, where declines appear to be most pronounced. Productivity in various areas and habitats throughout the breeding range needs to be assessed by conducting retrospective analyses of existing data and by intensive field studies at broad and local scales. Annual and seasonal survival rates need to be determined in order to assess the role of harvest or natural mortality. Effects of contaminants on reproduction, female body condition, and behavior must be investigated. Use, distribution, and role of food resources relative to body condition and reproduction need to be examined to better understand seasonal dynamics of nutrient reserves and the role in reproductive success. Affiliations among breeding, migration, and wintering areas must be assessed in order to understand differential exposure to harvest or contaminants, and differential reproductive success and recruitment. Biologists and agencies need to gather and improve information needed to manage greater and lesser

  19. Walking ability to predict future cognitive decline in old adults: A scoping review.

    PubMed

    Kikkert, Lisette H J; Vuillerme, Nicolas; van Campen, Jos P; Hortobágyi, Tibor; Lamoth, Claudine J

    2016-05-01

    Early identification of individuals at risk for cognitive decline may facilitate the selection of those who benefit most from interventions. Current models predicting cognitive decline include neuropsychological and/or biological markers. Additional markers based on walking ability might improve accuracy and specificity of these models because motor and cognitive functions share neuroanatomical structures and psychological processes. We reviewed the relationship between walking ability at one point of (mid) life and cognitive decline at follow-up. A systematic literature search identified 20 longitudinal studies. The average follow-up time was 4.5 years. Gait speed quantified walking ability in most studies (n=18). Additional gait measures (n=4) were step frequency, variability and step-length. Despite methodological weaknesses, results revealed that gait slowing (0.68-1.1 m/sec) preceded cognitive decline and the presence of dementia syndromes (maximal odds and hazard ratios of 10.4 and 11.1, respectively). The results indicate that measures of walking ability could serve as additional markers to predict cognitive decline. However, gait speed alone might lack specificity. We recommend gait analysis, including dynamic gait parameters, in clinical evaluations of patients with suspected cognitive decline. Future studies should focus on examining the specificity and accuracy of various gait characteristics to predict future cognitive decline. PMID:26861693

  20. Dexterous Manipulation Is Poorer at Older Ages and Is Dissociated From Decline of Hand Strength

    PubMed Central

    Dayanidhi, Sudarshan

    2014-01-01

    Background. The ability to dynamically control fingertip force vector magnitude and direction is critical for dexterous manipulation. We quantified the dynamic control of fingertip forces to examine how dexterous manipulation declines with age. Methods. The strength–dexterity (SD) test measures fingertip forces during compression of a slender spring prone to instability and buckling. The greatest sustained compression (designed to be under 3 N), and force dynamics therein, have been shown to be simple and quick measures of dynamic dexterous manipulation ability. We measured pinch strength and strength–dexterity test in a cross-sectional population of 98 people from 18 to 89 years of age. Results. Dexterous manipulation ability is poorer at older ages, beginning in middle age (p < .001), with greater decline past 65 years of age. Fingertip force dynamics during spring compression and stabilization show a deterioration of neuromuscular control with age. Importantly, this novel detection of decline in dynamic manipulation ability is not correlated with, and thus cannot be entirely explained by, the known decline in pinch strength. We also measured standardized tests of dexterity in participants older than 45, and discuss how the strength–dexterity test uniquely captures features of sensorimotor capabilities for dexterous manipulation in this adult population. Conclusions. Starting in middle age, changes in the functional interactions among sensory, motor, and neural capabilities result in measurably poorer dynamic dexterous manipulation. This deterioration of neuromuscular control motivates and enables future studies to understand the physiological bases for this functional decline so critical to activities of daily living and quality of life. PMID:24610868

  1. Declining fertility and economic well-being: do education and health ride to the rescue?

    PubMed Central

    Prettner, Klaus; Bloom, David E.; Strulik, Holger

    2015-01-01

    It is widely argued that declining fertility slows the pace of economic growth in industrialized countries through its negative effect on labor supply. There are, however, theoretical arguments suggesting that the effect of falling fertility on effective labor supply can be offset by associated behavioral changes. We formalize these arguments by setting forth a dynamic consumer optimization model that incorporates endogenous fertility as well as endogenous education and health investments. The model shows that a fertility decline induces higher education and health investments that are able to compensate for declining fertility under certain circumstances. We assess the theoretical implications by investigating panel data for 118 countries over the period 1980 to 2005 and show that behavioral changes partly mitigate the negative impact of declining fertility on effective labor supply. PMID:26388677

  2. The rise (and decline?) of biotechnology.

    PubMed

    Kinch, Michael S

    2014-11-01

    Since the 1970s, biotechnology has been a key innovator in drug development. An analysis of FDA-approved therapeutics demonstrates pharmaceutical companies outpace biotechs in terms of new approvals but biotechnology companies are now responsible for earlier-stage activities (patents, INDs or clinical development). The number of biotechnology organizations that contributed to an FDA approval began declining in the 2000s and is at a level not seen since the 1980s. Whereas early biotechnology companies had a decade from first approval until acquisition, the average acquisition of a biotechnology company now occurs months before their first FDA approval. The number of hybrid organizations that arise when pharmaceutical companies acquire biotechnology is likewise declining, raising questions about the sustainability of biotechnology. PMID:24747562

  3. The decline of North American freshwater fishes

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Walsh, Stephen J.; Jelks, Howard L.; Burkhead, Noel M.

    2009-01-01

    North America has a broad array of freshwater ecosystems because of the continent's complex geography and geological history. Within a multitude of habitats—that include streams, large rivers, natural lakes, springs, and wetlands—rich assemblages of fishes reside, representing diverse taxonomic groups with unique ecological requirements. They face an unprecedented conservation crisis.1 In the last few decades, the proportion of inland fishes of North America, which are considered imperiled or extinct, increased from 20 to 40%.2 Although extinctions have occurred, many species and populations are declining in range size and abundance. The fish biota of the continent as a whole remains diverse; however, we can take action to stem any further declines.

  4. Analysis of production decline in geothermal reservoirs

    SciTech Connect

    Zais, Elliot J.; Bodvarsson, Gunnar

    1980-09-01

    The major objectives of the Decline Curve project were to: (1) test the decline analysis methods used in the petroleum industry on geothermal production data; (2) examine and/or develop new analysis methods; and (3) develop a standard operating procedure for analyzing geothermal production data. Various analysis methods have long been available but they have not been tested on geothermal data because of the lack of publicly available data. The recent release to publication of substantial data sets from Wairakei, New Zealand, Cerro Prieto, Mexico and The Geysers, USA has made this study possible. Geothermal reservoirs are quite different from petroleum reservoirs in many ways so the analysis methods must be tested using geothermal data.

  5. The decline of Arab oil revenues

    SciTech Connect

    Farid, A.M.

    1986-01-01

    Since 1981, Arab oil revenues have declined by about 40-50%. This has had an enormous impact on the Arab economies as well as on economic and political relations between the Arab world, the industrialised world and the Third world. This book reviews how lower oil revenues have affected Arab countries and the international economy. It also considers the future prospects for Arab oil and the world oil industry. It analyses the various assessment of the life span of oil, the forecasts concerning the development of alternative sources of energy and the factors governing the demand for oil. Although the outlook for the Arab economies appears gloomy in many respects, the book argues that there is potential within the Arab world to overcome the decline in oil revenues. However it will require great efforts in political and economic co-operation amongst Arab states.

  6. Almagest Declinations: Timocharis, Aristyllus, and Hipparcus

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zimmer, Peter C.; Brandt, J. C.; Jones, P. B.

    2013-01-01

    Declinations in the Almagest provide an opportunity to determine the observational precision of the ancient observers and their epochs. The basic data are the original observations (O) and the declinations calculated (C) by precessing modern positions and including refraction. The plots of (O) - (C) can be analyzed using several different approaches. All of the original positions appear to be valid except Timocharis’s value for Arcturus. Consistent results for the precisions and epochs, respectively, are: Timocharis--8.1 arc min, near 296BC; Aristyllus--5.3 arc min, near 258BC; and Hipparcus--6.8 arc min, near 130BC. See the papers by Pannekoek (1955), Maeyama (1984), Rawlins (manuscript, c. 1983), and our earlier (Brandt, Zimmer, and Jones, 2011) report for the development of this subject. The precisions in the range 5-8 arc min are remarkable and the dates are compatible with historical evidence.

  7. Regenerative decline of stem cells in sarcopenia.

    PubMed

    Sousa-Victor, Pedro; Muñoz-Cánoves, Pura

    2016-08-01

    Skeletal muscle mass and function decline with aging, a process known as sarcopenia, which restrains posture maintenance, mobility and quality of life in the elderly. Sarcopenia is also linked to a progressive reduction in the regenerative capacity of the skeletal muscle stem cells (satellite cells), which are critical for myofiber formation in early life stages and for sustaining repair in response to muscle damage or trauma. Here we will review the most recent findings on the causes underlying satellite cell functional decline with aging, and will discuss the prevalent view whereby age-associated extrinsic factor alterations impact negatively on satellite cell-intrinsic mechanisms, resulting in deficient muscle regeneration with aging. Further understanding of the interplay between satellite cell extrinsic and intrinsic factors in sarcopenia will facilitate therapies aimed at improving muscle repair in the increasing aging population. PMID:26921790

  8. 26 CFR 1.167(b)-2 - Declining balance method.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-04-01

    ... 26 Internal Revenue 2 2010-04-01 2010-04-01 false Declining balance method. 1.167(b)-2 Section 1... Declining balance method. (a) Application of method. Under the declining balance method a uniform rate is... declining balance rate may be determined without resort to formula. Such rate determined under section...

  9. 26 CFR 1.167(b)-2 - Declining balance method.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-04-01

    ... 26 Internal Revenue 2 2014-04-01 2014-04-01 false Declining balance method. 1.167(b)-2 Section 1... Declining balance method. (a) Application of method. Under the declining balance method a uniform rate is... declining balance rate may be determined without resort to formula. Such rate determined under section...

  10. 26 CFR 1.167(b)-2 - Declining balance method.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-04-01

    ... 26 Internal Revenue 2 2013-04-01 2013-04-01 false Declining balance method. 1.167(b)-2 Section 1... Declining balance method. (a) Application of method. Under the declining balance method a uniform rate is... declining balance rate may be determined without resort to formula. Such rate determined under section...

  11. 26 CFR 1.167(b)-2 - Declining balance method.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-04-01

    ... 26 Internal Revenue 2 2012-04-01 2012-04-01 false Declining balance method. 1.167(b)-2 Section 1... Declining balance method. (a) Application of method. Under the declining balance method a uniform rate is... declining balance rate may be determined without resort to formula. Such rate determined under section...

  12. 26 CFR 1.167(b)-2 - Declining balance method.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-04-01

    ... 26 Internal Revenue 2 2011-04-01 2011-04-01 false Declining balance method. 1.167(b)-2 Section 1... Declining balance method. (a) Application of method. Under the declining balance method a uniform rate is... declining balance rate may be determined without resort to formula. Such rate determined under section...

  13. Reliability of indicators of decline in abundance.

    PubMed

    Porszt, Erin J; Peterman, Randall M; Dulvy, Nicholas K; Cooper, Andrew B; Irvine, James R

    2012-10-01

    Although there are many indicators of endangerment (i.e., whether populations or species meet criteria that justify conservation action), their reliability has rarely been tested. Such indicators may fail to identify that a population or species meets criteria for conservation action (false negative) or may incorrectly show that such criteria have been met (false positive). To quantify the rate of both types of error for 20 commonly used indicators of declining abundance (threat indicators), we used receiver operating characteristic curves derived from historical (1938-2007) data for 18 sockeye salmon (Oncorhynchus nerka) populations in the Fraser River, British Columbia, Canada. We retrospectively determined each population's yearly status (reflected by change in abundance over time) on the basis of each indicator. We then compared that population's status in a given year with the status in subsequent years (determined by the magnitude of decline in abundance across those years). For each sockeye population, we calculated how often each indicator of past status matched subsequent status. No single threat indicator provided error-free estimates of status, but indicators that reflected the extent (i.e., magnitude) of past decline in abundance (through comparison of current abundance with some historical baseline abundance) tended to better reflect status in subsequent years than the rate of decline over the previous 3 generations (a widely used indicator). We recommend that when possible, the reliability of various threat indicators be evaluated with empirical analyses before such indicators are used to determine the need for conservation action. These indicators should include estimates from the entire data set to take into account a historical baseline. PMID:22741815

  14. Emerging infectious diseases and amphibian population declines.

    PubMed Central

    Daszak, P.; Berger, L.; Cunningham, A. A.; Hyatt, A. D.; Green, D. E.; Speare, R.

    1999-01-01

    We review recent research on the pathology, ecology, and biogeography of two emerging infectious wildlife diseases, chytridiomycosis and ranaviral disease, in the context of host-parasite population biology. We examine the role of these diseases in the global decline of amphibian populations and propose hypotheses for the origins and impact of these panzootics. Finally, we discuss emerging infectious diseases as a global threat to wildlife populations. PMID:10603206

  15. Southern California ozone pollution declining and changing

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Balcerak, Ernie

    2013-07-01

    Many studies have documented the decline in ozone pollution and its precursors in the Los Angeles air basin over the past several decades. Now Pollack et al. have analyzed new data from research aircraft, along with archived data from roadside monitors and ground-based instruments, to provide a synthesis of concentrations and emissions ratios of ozone, other secondary pollutants, and their precursors from 1960 to 2010.

  16. The cultural evolution of fertility decline.

    PubMed

    Colleran, Heidi

    2016-04-19

    Cultural evolutionists have long been interested in the problem of why fertility declines as populations develop. By outlining plausible mechanistic links between individual decision-making, information flow in populations and competition between groups, models of cultural evolution offer a novel and powerful approach for integrating multiple levels of explanation of fertility transitions. However, only a modest number of models have been published. Their assumptions often differ from those in other evolutionary approaches to social behaviour, but their empirical predictions are often similar. Here I offer the first overview of cultural evolutionary research on demographic transition, critically compare it with approaches taken by other evolutionary researchers, identify gaps and overlaps, and highlight parallel debates in demography. I suggest that researchers divide their labour between three distinct phases of fertility decline-the origin, spread and maintenance of low fertility-each of which may be driven by different causal processes, at different scales, requiring different theoretical and empirical tools. A comparative, multi-level and mechanistic framework is essential for elucidating both the evolved aspects of our psychology that govern reproductive decision-making, and the social, ecological and cultural contingencies that precipitate and sustain fertility decline. PMID:27022079

  17. Is human fecundity declining in Western countries?

    PubMed

    te Velde, Egbert; Burdorf, Alex; Nieschlag, Eberhard; Eijkemans, René; Kremer, Jan A M; Roeleveld, Nel; Habbema, Dik

    2010-06-01

    Since Carlsen and co-workers reported in 1992 that sperm counts have decreased during the second half of the last century in Western societies, there has been widespread anxiety about the adverse effects of environmental pollutants on human fecundity. The Carlsen report was followed by several re-analyses of their data set and by many studies on time trends in sperm quality and on secular trends in fecundity. However, the results of these studies were diverse, complex, difficult to interpret and, therefore, less straightforward than the Carlsen report suggested. The claims that population fecundity is declining and that environmental pollutants are involved, can neither be confirmed nor rejected, in our opinion. However, it is of great importance to find out because the possible influence of widespread environmental pollution, which would adversely affect human reproduction, should be a matter of great concern triggering large-scale studies into its causes and possibilities for prevention. The fundamental reason we still do not know whether population fecundity is declining is the lack of an appropriate surveillance system. Is such a system possible? In our opinion, determining total sperm counts (as a measure of male reproductive health) in combination with time to pregnancy (as a measure of couple fecundity) in carefully selected populations is a feasible option for such a monitoring system. If we want to find out whether or not population fecundity will be declining within the following 20-30 years, we must start monitoring now. PMID:20395222

  18. Ulysses orbit determination at high declinations

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Mcelrath, Timothy P.; Lewis, George D.

    1995-01-01

    The trajectory of the Ulysses spacecraft caused its geocentric declination to exceed 60 deg South for over two months during the Fall of 1994, permitting continuous tracking from a single site. During this time, spacecraft operations constraints allowed only Doppler tracking data to be collected, and imposed a high radial acceleration uncertainty on the orbit determination process. The unusual aspects of this situation have motivated a re-examination of the Hamilton-Melbourne results, which have been used before to estimate the information content of Doppler tracking for trajectories closer to the ecliptic. The addition of an acceleration term to this equation is found to significantly increase the declination uncertainty for symmetric passes. In addition, a simple means is described to transform the symmetric results when the tracking pass is non-symmetric. The analytical results are then compared against numerical studies of this tracking geometry and found to be in good agreement for the angular uncertainties. The results of this analysis are applicable to the Near Earth Asteroid Rendezvous (NEAR) mission and to any other missions with high declination trajectories, as well as to missions using short tracking passes and/or one-way Doppler data.

  19. Reversal of cognitive decline in Alzheimer's disease

    PubMed Central

    Bredesen, Dale E.; Amos, Edwin C.; Canick, Jonathan; Ackerley, Mary; Raji, Cyrus; Fiala, Milan; Ahdidan, Jamila

    2016-01-01

    Alzheimer's disease is one of the most significant healthcare problems nationally and globally. Recently, the first description of the reversal of cognitive decline in patients with early Alzheimer's disease or its precursors, MCI (mild cognitive impairment) and SCI (subjective cognitive impairment), was published [1]. The therapeutic approach used was programmatic and personalized rather than monotherapeutic and invariant, and was dubbed metabolic enhancement for neurodegeneration (MEND). Patients who had had to discontinue work were able to return to work, and those struggling at work were able to improve their performance. The patients, their spouses, and their co-workers all reported clear improvements. Here we report the results from quantitative MRI and neuropsychological testing in ten patients with cognitive decline, nine ApoE4+ (five homozygous and four heterozygous) and one ApoE4−, who were treated with the MEND protocol for 5-24 months. The magnitude of the improvement is unprecedented, providing additional objective evidence that this programmatic approach to cognitive decline is highly effective. These results have far-reaching implications for the treatment of Alzheimer's disease, MCI, and SCI; for personalized programs that may enhance pharmaceutical efficacy; and for personal identification of ApoE genotype. PMID:27294343

  20. Fertility rates: the decline is stalling.

    PubMed

    Starke, L

    1994-01-01

    During the 1970s, the rate of total fertility in China fell from 6.4 children per woman in 1968 to 2.2 in 1980. The decline in India was more modest, but still significant at 5.8 over the period 1966-71 to 4.8 during 1976-1981. These trends helped slow the rate of world population growth from 2.1% during 1965-70 to 1.7% during 1975-80. Fertility rates are currently declining in similar fashion in Brazil, Egypt, Indonesia, Mexico, and Thailand. While impressive and much needed to ultimately stabilize world population growth, fertility declines in China and India stalled throughout the 1980s. The fertility rate in China remained around 2.5 throughout much of the decade, while progress toward lower birth rates stalled in India after the defeat of the ruling Congress Party in the late 1970s. Moreover, 67 developing countries, home to 17% of global population, have yet to enter the phase of demographic transition. It is clear that governments must supply contraceptives and reproductive health care services to couples in need of regulating their fertility, but they must also lower the demand for children by working to improve women's lives and increase their access to and control over money, credit, and other resources. PMID:12287752

  1. Large Decadal Decline of the Arctic Multiyear Ice Cover

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Comiso, Josefino C.

    2011-01-01

    The perennial ice area was drastically reduced to 38% of its climatological average in 2007 but recovered somewhat in 2008, 2009 and 2010 with the areas being 10%, 24%, and 11% higher than in 2007, respectively. However, the trends in the extent and area remain strongly negative at -12.2% and -13.5 %/decade, respectively. The thick component of the perennial ice, called multiyear ice, as detected by satellite data in the winters of 1979 to 2011 was studied and results reveal that the multiyear ice extent and area are declining at an even more rapid rate of -15.1% and -17.2 % per decade, respectively, with record low value in 2008 followed by higher values in 2009, 2010 and 2011. Such high rate in the decline of the thick component of the Arctic ice cover means a reduction in average ice thickness and an even more vulnerable perennial ice cover. The decline of the multiyear ice area from 2007 to 2008 was not as strong as that of the perennial ice area from 2006 to 2007 suggesting a strong role of second year ice melt in the latter. The sea ice cover is shown to be strongly correlated with surface temperature which is increasing at about three times global average in the Arctic but appears weakly correlated with the AO which controls the dynamics of the region. An 8 to 9-year cycle is apparent in the multiyear ice record which could explain in part the slight recovery in the last three years.

  2. Widespread decline of Congo rainforest greenness in the past decade.

    PubMed

    Zhou, Liming; Tian, Yuhong; Myneni, Ranga B; Ciais, Philippe; Saatchi, Sassan; Liu, Yi Y; Piao, Shilong; Chen, Haishan; Vermote, Eric F; Song, Conghe; Hwang, Taehee

    2014-05-01

    Tropical forests are global epicentres of biodiversity and important modulators of climate change, and are mainly constrained by rainfall patterns. The severe short-term droughts that occurred recently in Amazonia have drawn attention to the vulnerability of tropical forests to climatic disturbances. The central African rainforests, the second-largest on Earth, have experienced a long-term drying trend whose impacts on vegetation dynamics remain mostly unknown because in situ observations are very limited. The Congolese forest, with its drier conditions and higher percentage of semi-evergreen trees, may be more tolerant to short-term rainfall reduction than are wetter tropical forests, but for a long-term drought there may be critical thresholds of water availability below which higher-biomass, closed-canopy forests transition to more open, lower-biomass forests. Here we present observational evidence for a widespread decline in forest greenness over the past decade based on analyses of satellite data (optical, thermal, microwave and gravity) from several independent sensors over the Congo basin. This decline in vegetation greenness, particularly in the northern Congolese forest, is generally consistent with decreases in rainfall, terrestrial water storage, water content in aboveground woody and leaf biomass, and the canopy backscatter anomaly caused by changes in structure and moisture in upper forest layers. It is also consistent with increases in photosynthetically active radiation and land surface temperature. These multiple lines of evidence indicate that this large-scale vegetation browning, or loss of photosynthetic capacity, may be partially attributable to the long-term drying trend. Our results suggest that a continued gradual decline of photosynthetic capacity and moisture content driven by the persistent drying trend could alter the composition and structure of the Congolese forest to favour the spread of drought-tolerant species. PMID:24759324

  3. Long-term decline of the Amazon carbon sink.

    PubMed

    Brienen, R J W; Phillips, O L; Feldpausch, T R; Gloor, E; Baker, T R; Lloyd, J; Lopez-Gonzalez, G; Monteagudo-Mendoza, A; Malhi, Y; Lewis, S L; Vásquez Martinez, R; Alexiades, M; Álvarez Dávila, E; Alvarez-Loayza, P; Andrade, A; Aragão, L E O C; Araujo-Murakami, A; Arets, E J M M; Arroyo, L; Aymard C, G A; Bánki, O S; Baraloto, C; Barroso, J; Bonal, D; Boot, R G A; Camargo, J L C; Castilho, C V; Chama, V; Chao, K J; Chave, J; Comiskey, J A; Cornejo Valverde, F; da Costa, L; de Oliveira, E A; Di Fiore, A; Erwin, T L; Fauset, S; Forsthofer, M; Galbraith, D R; Grahame, E S; Groot, N; Hérault, B; Higuchi, N; Honorio Coronado, E N; Keeling, H; Killeen, T J; Laurance, W F; Laurance, S; Licona, J; Magnussen, W E; Marimon, B S; Marimon-Junior, B H; Mendoza, C; Neill, D A; Nogueira, E M; Núñez, P; Pallqui Camacho, N C; Parada, A; Pardo-Molina, G; Peacock, J; Peña-Claros, M; Pickavance, G C; Pitman, N C A; Poorter, L; Prieto, A; Quesada, C A; Ramírez, F; Ramírez-Angulo, H; Restrepo, Z; Roopsind, A; Rudas, A; Salomão, R P; Schwarz, M; Silva, N; Silva-Espejo, J E; Silveira, M; Stropp, J; Talbot, J; ter Steege, H; Teran-Aguilar, J; Terborgh, J; Thomas-Caesar, R; Toledo, M; Torello-Raventos, M; Umetsu, R K; van der Heijden, G M F; van der Hout, P; Guimarães Vieira, I C; Vieira, S A; Vilanova, E; Vos, V A; Zagt, R J

    2015-03-19

    Atmospheric carbon dioxide records indicate that the land surface has acted as a strong global carbon sink over recent decades, with a substantial fraction of this sink probably located in the tropics, particularly in the Amazon. Nevertheless, it is unclear how the terrestrial carbon sink will evolve as climate and atmospheric composition continue to change. Here we analyse the historical evolution of the biomass dynamics of the Amazon rainforest over three decades using a distributed network of 321 plots. While this analysis confirms that Amazon forests have acted as a long-term net biomass sink, we find a long-term decreasing trend of carbon accumulation. Rates of net increase in above-ground biomass declined by one-third during the past decade compared to the 1990s. This is a consequence of growth rate increases levelling off recently, while biomass mortality persistently increased throughout, leading to a shortening of carbon residence times. Potential drivers for the mortality increase include greater climate variability, and feedbacks of faster growth on mortality, resulting in shortened tree longevity. The observed decline of the Amazon sink diverges markedly from the recent increase in terrestrial carbon uptake at the global scale, and is contrary to expectations based on models. PMID:25788097

  4. Long-term decline of the Amazon carbon sink

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Brienen, R. J. W.; Phillips, O. L.; Feldpausch, T. R.; Gloor, E.; Baker, T. R.; Lloyd, J.; Lopez-Gonzalez, G.; Monteagudo-Mendoza, A.; Malhi, Y.; Lewis, S. L.; Vásquez Martinez, R.; Alexiades, M.; Álvarez Dávila, E.; Alvarez-Loayza, P.; Andrade, A.; Aragão, L. E. O. C.; Araujo-Murakami, A.; Arets, E. J. M. M.; Arroyo, L.; Aymard C., G. A.; Bánki, O. S.; Baraloto, C.; Barroso, J.; Bonal, D.; Boot, R. G. A.; Camargo, J. L. C.; Castilho, C. V.; Chama, V.; Chao, K. J.; Chave, J.; Comiskey, J. A.; Cornejo Valverde, F.; da Costa, L.; de Oliveira, E. A.; di Fiore, A.; Erwin, T. L.; Fauset, S.; Forsthofer, M.; Galbraith, D. R.; Grahame, E. S.; Groot, N.; Hérault, B.; Higuchi, N.; Honorio Coronado, E. N.; Keeling, H.; Killeen, T. J.; Laurance, W. F.; Laurance, S.; Licona, J.; Magnussen, W. E.; Marimon, B. S.; Marimon-Junior, B. H.; Mendoza, C.; Neill, D. A.; Nogueira, E. M.; Núñez, P.; Pallqui Camacho, N. C.; Parada, A.; Pardo-Molina, G.; Peacock, J.; Peña-Claros, M.; Pickavance, G. C.; Pitman, N. C. A.; Poorter, L.; Prieto, A.; Quesada, C. A.; Ramírez, F.; Ramírez-Angulo, H.; Restrepo, Z.; Roopsind, A.; Rudas, A.; Salomão, R. P.; Schwarz, M.; Silva, N.; Silva-Espejo, J. E.; Silveira, M.; Stropp, J.; Talbot, J.; Ter Steege, H.; Teran-Aguilar, J.; Terborgh, J.; Thomas-Caesar, R.; Toledo, M.; Torello-Raventos, M.; Umetsu, R. K.; van der Heijden, G. M. F.; van der Hout, P.; Guimarães Vieira, I. C.; Vieira, S. A.; Vilanova, E.; Vos, V. A.; Zagt, R. J.

    2015-03-01

    Atmospheric carbon dioxide records indicate that the land surface has acted as a strong global carbon sink over recent decades, with a substantial fraction of this sink probably located in the tropics, particularly in the Amazon. Nevertheless, it is unclear how the terrestrial carbon sink will evolve as climate and atmospheric composition continue to change. Here we analyse the historical evolution of the biomass dynamics of the Amazon rainforest over three decades using a distributed network of 321 plots. While this analysis confirms that Amazon forests have acted as a long-term net biomass sink, we find a long-term decreasing trend of carbon accumulation. Rates of net increase in above-ground biomass declined by one-third during the past decade compared to the 1990s. This is a consequence of growth rate increases levelling off recently, while biomass mortality persistently increased throughout, leading to a shortening of carbon residence times. Potential drivers for the mortality increase include greater climate variability, and feedbacks of faster growth on mortality, resulting in shortened tree longevity. The observed decline of the Amazon sink diverges markedly from the recent increase in terrestrial carbon uptake at the global scale, and is contrary to expectations based on models.

  5. Decline of subpolar North Atlantic circulation during the 1990s.

    PubMed

    Häkkinen, Sirpa; Rhines, Peter B

    2004-04-23

    Observations of sea surface height reveal that substantial changes have occurred over the past decade in the mid- to high-latitude North Atlantic Ocean. TOPEX/Poseidon altimeter data show that subpolar sea surface height increased during the 1990s, and the geostrophic velocity derived from altimeter data exhibits declining subpolar gyre circulation. Combining the data from earlier satellites, we find that subpolar circulation may have been weaker in the late 1990s than in the late 1970s and 1980s. Direct current-meter observations in the boundary current of the Labrador Sea support the weakening circulation trend of the 1990s and, together with hydrographic data, show that the mid- to late 1990s decline extends deep in the water column. Analysis of the local surface forcing suggests that the 1990s buoyancy forcing has a dynamic effect consistent with altimetric and hydrographic observations: A weak thermohaline forcing allows the decay of the domed structure of subpolar isopycnals and weakening of circulation. PMID:15087505

  6. Intraguild Predation and Native Lady Beetle Decline

    PubMed Central

    Gardiner, Mary M.; O'Neal, Matthew E.; Landis, Douglas A.

    2011-01-01

    Coccinellid communities across North America have experienced significant changes in recent decades, with declines in several native species reported. One potential mechanism for these declines is interference competition via intraguild predation; specifically, increased predation of native coccinellid eggs and larvae following the introduction of exotic coccinellids. Our previous studies have shown that agricultural fields in Michigan support a higher diversity and abundance of exotic coccinellids than similar fields in Iowa, and that the landscape surrounding agricultural fields across the north central U.S. influences the abundance and activity of coccinellid species. The goal of this study was to quantify the amount of egg predation experienced by a native coccinellid within Michigan and Iowa soybean fields and explore the influence of local and large-scale landscape structure. Using the native lady beetle Coleomegilla maculata as a model, we found that sentinel egg masses were subject to intense predation within both Michigan and Iowa soybean fields, with 60.7% of egg masses attacked and 43.0% of available eggs consumed within 48 h. In Michigan, the exotic coccinellids Coccinella septempunctata and Harmonia axyridis were the most abundant predators found in soybean fields whereas in Iowa, native species including C. maculata, Hippodamia parenthesis and the soft-winged flower beetle Collops nigriceps dominated the predator community. Predator abundance was greater in soybean fields within diverse landscapes, yet variation in predator numbers did not influence the intensity of egg predation observed. In contrast, the strongest predictor of native coccinellid egg predation was the composition of edge habitats bordering specific fields. Field sites surrounded by semi-natural habitats including forests, restored prairies, old fields, and pasturelands experienced greater egg predation than fields surrounded by other croplands. This study shows that intraguild

  7. Intraguild predation and native lady beetle decline.

    PubMed

    Gardiner, Mary M; O'Neal, Matthew E; Landis, Douglas A

    2011-01-01

    Coccinellid communities across North America have experienced significant changes in recent decades, with declines in several native species reported. One potential mechanism for these declines is interference competition via intraguild predation; specifically, increased predation of native coccinellid eggs and larvae following the introduction of exotic coccinellids. Our previous studies have shown that agricultural fields in Michigan support a higher diversity and abundance of exotic coccinellids than similar fields in Iowa, and that the landscape surrounding agricultural fields across the north central U.S. influences the abundance and activity of coccinellid species. The goal of this study was to quantify the amount of egg predation experienced by a native coccinellid within Michigan and Iowa soybean fields and explore the influence of local and large-scale landscape structure. Using the native lady beetle Coleomegilla maculata as a model, we found that sentinel egg masses were subject to intense predation within both Michigan and Iowa soybean fields, with 60.7% of egg masses attacked and 43.0% of available eggs consumed within 48 h. In Michigan, the exotic coccinellids Coccinella septempunctata and Harmonia axyridis were the most abundant predators found in soybean fields whereas in Iowa, native species including C. maculata, Hippodamia parenthesis and the soft-winged flower beetle Collops nigriceps dominated the predator community. Predator abundance was greater in soybean fields within diverse landscapes, yet variation in predator numbers did not influence the intensity of egg predation observed. In contrast, the strongest predictor of native coccinellid egg predation was the composition of edge habitats bordering specific fields. Field sites surrounded by semi-natural habitats including forests, restored prairies, old fields, and pasturelands experienced greater egg predation than fields surrounded by other croplands. This study shows that intraguild

  8. Multispectral sensing of citrus young tree decline

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Edwards, G. J.; Ducharme, E. P.; Schehl, T.

    1975-01-01

    Computer processing of MSS data to identify and map citrus trees affected by young tree decline is analyzed. The data were obtained at 1500-feet altitude in six discrete spectral bands covering regions from 0.53 to 1.3 millimicrons as well as from instrumental ground truths of tree crowns. Measurable spectral reflectance intensity differences are observed in the leaves of healthy and diseased trees, especially at wavelengths of 500 to 600 nm and 700 to 800 nm. The overall accuracy of the method is found to be 89%.

  9. [Major features of decline of Pinus sylvestris var. mongolica plantation on sandy land].

    PubMed

    Wu, Xiangyun; Jiang, Fengqi; Li, Xiaodan; Xue, Yang; Qiu, Sufen

    2004-12-01

    In view of the decline of man-made sand-fixation forest of Pinus sylvestris var. mongolica in Zhanggutai sand land of Liaoning Province, this paper studied the major characteristics of the decline. The appearance of the declining man-made sand-fixation forest of Pinus sylvestris var. mongolica was grey green, its needle leaf was very thin, the blooming and fruiting rate was low, the average quantity of cones per tree was only 10.4-16.5, with only 6.96 g to 7.39 g per thousand seeds, and there were many empty and astringent seeds. The seasonal dynamics of nutrients in 2-year-old pine needle leaf was similar, i.e., the N and P contents decreased, while K content increased, showing that the nutrient cycle was imbalance. The chlorophyll content in 2-year-old needle leaf of declined forest was high, while that in 1-year-old healthy forest was also high but with a wide increasing range. The infected harm of shoot blight was the clearest mark to the decline of man-made sand-fixation forest of Pinus sylvestris var. mongolica. After the forest declined, the height and the DBH of the pine trees decreased evidently, and the structure of DBH distribution moved "left". The quantity of weak pine trees increased by 15.9%-27.2%, the roots decreased by 22.9%-28.9%, and the absorbing roots (diameter < 0.5 cm) decreased most seriously. PMID:15825430

  10. The cultural evolution of fertility decline

    PubMed Central

    Colleran, Heidi

    2016-01-01

    Cultural evolutionists have long been interested in the problem of why fertility declines as populations develop. By outlining plausible mechanistic links between individual decision-making, information flow in populations and competition between groups, models of cultural evolution offer a novel and powerful approach for integrating multiple levels of explanation of fertility transitions. However, only a modest number of models have been published. Their assumptions often differ from those in other evolutionary approaches to social behaviour, but their empirical predictions are often similar. Here I offer the first overview of cultural evolutionary research on demographic transition, critically compare it with approaches taken by other evolutionary researchers, identify gaps and overlaps, and highlight parallel debates in demography. I suggest that researchers divide their labour between three distinct phases of fertility decline—the origin, spread and maintenance of low fertility—each of which may be driven by different causal processes, at different scales, requiring different theoretical and empirical tools. A comparative, multi-level and mechanistic framework is essential for elucidating both the evolved aspects of our psychology that govern reproductive decision-making, and the social, ecological and cultural contingencies that precipitate and sustain fertility decline. PMID:27022079

  11. Musculoskeletal health, frailty and functional decline.

    PubMed

    Milte, R; Crotty, M

    2014-06-01

    Frailty in older people is associated with a vulnerability to adverse events. While ageing is associated with a loss of physiological reserves, identifying those with the syndrome of frailty has the potential to assist clinicians to tailor treatments to those at the risk of future decline into disability with an increased risk of complications, morbidity and mortality. Sarcopenia is a key component of the frailty syndrome and on its own puts older people at risk of fragility fractures; however, the clinical syndrome of frailty affects the musculoskeletal and non-musculoskeletal systems. Hip fractures are becoming a prototype condition in the study of frailty. Following a hip fracture, many of the interventions are focused on limiting mobility disability and restoring independence with activities of daily living, but there are multiple factors to be addressed including osteoporosis, sarcopenia, delirium and weight loss. Established techniques of geriatric evaluation and management allow systematic assessment and intervention on multiple components by multidisciplinary teams and deliver the best outcomes. Using the concept of frailty to identify older people with musculoskeletal problems as being at the risk of a poor outcome assists in treatment planning and is likely to become more important as effective pharmacological treatments for sarcopenia emerge. This review will focus on the concept of frailty and its relationship with functional decline, as well as describing its causes, prevalence, risk factors, potential clinical applications and treatment strategies. PMID:25481423

  12. The impact of freedom on fertility decline.

    PubMed

    Campbell, Martha M; Prata, Ndola; Potts, Malcolm

    2013-01-01

    Although fertility decline often correlates with improvements in socioeconomic conditions, many demographers have found flaws in demographic transition theories that depend on changes in distal factors such as increased wealth or education. Human beings worldwide engage in sexual intercourse much more frequently than is needed to conceive the number of children they want, and for women who do not have access to the information and means they need to separate sex from childbearing, the default position is a large family. In many societies, male patriarchal drives to control female reproduction give rise to unnecessary medical rules constraining family planning (including safe abortion) or justifying child marriage. Widespread misinformation about contraception makes women afraid to adopt modern family planning. The barriers to family planning can be so deeply infused that for many women the idea of managing their fertility is not considered an option. Conversely, there is evidence that once family planning is introduced into a society, then it is normal consumer behaviour for individuals to welcome a new technology they had not wanted until it became realistically available. We contend that in societies free from child marriage, wherever women have access to a range of contraceptive methods, along with correct information and backed up by safe abortion, family size will always fall. Education and wealth can make the adoption of family planning easier, but they are not prerequisites for fertility decline. By contrast, access to family planning itself can accelerate economic development and the spread of education. PMID:23296851

  13. Declining incidence of acromioplasty in Finland

    PubMed Central

    Paloneva, Juha; Lepola, Vesa; Karppinen, Jaro; Ylinen, Jari; Äärimaa, Ville; Mattila, Ville M

    2015-01-01

    Background and purpose An increased incidence rate of acromioplasty has been reported; we analyzed data from the Finnish National Hospital Discharge Register. Patients and methods During the 14-year study period (1998–2011), 68,877 acromioplasties without rotator cuff repair were performed on subjects aged 18 years or older. Results The incidence of acromioplasty increased by 117% from 75 to 163 per 105 person years between 1998 and 2007. The highest incidence was observed in 2007, after which the incidence rate decreased by 20% to 131 per 105 person years in 2011. The incidence declined even more at non-profit public hospitals from 2007 to 2011. In contrast, it continued to rise at profit-based private orthopedic clinics. Interpretation We propose that this change in clinical practice is due to accumulating high-quality scientific evidence that shows no difference in outcome between acromioplasty and non-surgical interventions for rotator cuff disease with subacromial impingement syndrome. However, the exact cause of the declining incidence cannot be defined based solely on a registry study. Interestingly, this change was not observed at private clinics, where the number of operations increased steadily from 2007 to 2011. PMID:25340548

  14. [A cure for declining fertility. Pt. 2].

    PubMed

    Ransford, E

    1981-04-15

    Fertility decline, the natural consequence of an overemphasis on material comfort, has 5 main causes: parenthood has become a voluntary act; the emphasis on the quality of children has resulted in ever heavier parental responsibilities; the traditional sense of the family is gone; the social role of women has changed; and a generalized and diffuse moroseness has invaded the social tissue. Reversing the fertility decline requires a new social justice, which will merely return true freedom of choice. Because mothers of large families, honored in traditional societies, are today scorned and despised, there is no real freedom of procreative choice. A family policy worthy of the name would insure more just distribution of wealth in favor of those who contribute to the collective survival by bringing up future generations. Tax laws, urbanization patterns, female and parental work, and the numerous social goods and services should be adapted to the needs of family life and children. Also needed to encourage couples to have numerous families is a sense of cultural rootedness, of ethnic identity, that has largely been lost to technoindustrial society. Although the vision of history from which these reflections spring is materialist and determinist, it differs from a Marxist viewpoint in that it views history in terms of emphases rather than of relations of domination or force. PMID:12265401

  15. Declining suburbs in Europe and Latin America.

    PubMed

    Audirac, Ivonne; Cunningham-Sabot, Emmanuèle; Fol, Sylvie; Moraes, Sergio Torres

    2012-01-01

    Suburban shrinkage, understood as a degenerative urban process stemming from the demise of the Fordist mode of urbanism, is generally manifested in a decline in population, industry and employment. It is also intimately linked to the global restructuring of industrial organization associated with the rise of the post-Fordist mode of urbanism and, more recently, the thrust of Asian industrialization. Framed in the discourse of industrial urbanism, this article examines the first ring of industrial suburbs that developed around large cities in their most rapid Fordist urbanization phase. These industrial suburbs, although they were formed at different times, are today experiencing specific mutations and undergoing profound restructuring on account of their particular spatial position between the central area and the expanding peripheries of the post-Fordist metropolis. This article describes and compares suburban decline in two European cities (Glasgow and Paris) and two Latin American Cities (São Paulo, Brazil and Guadalajara, Mexico), as different instances of places asymmetrically and fragmentarily integrated into the geography of globalization. PMID:22518882

  16. Catastrophic ape decline in western equatorial Africa.

    PubMed

    Walsh, Peter D; Abernethy, Kate A; Bermejo, Magdalena; Beyers, Rene; De Wachter, Pauwel; Akou, Marc Ella; Huijbregts, Bas; Mambounga, Daniel Idiata; Toham, Andre Kamdem; Kilbourn, Annelisa M; Lahm, Sally A; Latour, Stefanie; Maisels, Fiona; Mbina, Christian; Mihindou, Yves; Obiang, Sosthène Ndong; Effa, Ernestine Ntsame; Starkey, Malcolm P; Telfer, Paul; Thibault, Marc; Tutin, Caroline E G; White, Lee J T; Wilkie, David S

    2003-04-10

    Because rapidly expanding human populations have devastated gorilla (Gorilla gorilla) and common chimpanzee (Pan troglodytes) habitats in East and West Africa, the relatively intact forests of western equatorial Africa have been viewed as the last stronghold of African apes. Gabon and the Republic of Congo alone are thought to hold roughly 80% of the world's gorillas and most of the common chimpanzees. Here we present survey results conservatively indicating that ape populations in Gabon declined by more than half between 1983 and 2000. The primary cause of the decline in ape numbers during this period was commercial hunting, facilitated by the rapid expansion of mechanized logging. Furthermore, Ebola haemorrhagic fever is currently spreading through ape populations in Gabon and Congo and now rivals hunting as a threat to apes. Gorillas and common chimpanzees should be elevated immediately to 'critically endangered' status. Without aggressive investments in law enforcement, protected area management and Ebola prevention, the next decade will see our closest relatives pushed to the brink of extinction. PMID:12679788

  17. Event- and time-dependent decline of outcome information in the primate prefrontal cortex

    PubMed Central

    Marcos, Encarni; Tsujimoto, Satoshi; Genovesio, Aldo

    2016-01-01

    The prefrontal cortex (PF) is involved in outcome-based flexible adaptation in a dynamically changing environment. The outcome signal dissipates gradually over time, but the temporal dynamics of this dissipation remains unknown. To examine this issue, we analyzed the outcome-related activity of PF neurons in 2 monkeys in a distance discrimination task. The initial prestimulus period of this task varied in duration, allowing us to dissociate the effects of time and event on the decline in previous outcome-related activity —previous correct versus previous error. We observed 2 types of decline in previous outcome representation: PF neurons that ceased to encode the previous outcome as time passed (time-dependent) and neurons that maintained their signal but it decreased rapidly after the occurrence of a new external event (event-dependent). Although the time-dependent dynamics explained the decline in a greater proportion of neurons, the event-dependent decline was also observed in a significant population of neurons. PMID:27162060

  18. Decline in Senses Affects Nearly All Seniors, Study Finds

    MedlinePlus

    ... fullstory_157426.html Decline in Senses Affects Nearly All Seniors, Study Finds Researchers say losses in taste, ... 2016 TUESDAY, Feb. 23, 2016 (HealthDay News) -- Nearly all older U.S. adults have an age-related decline ...

  19. Global biodiversity: indicators of recent declines

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Butchart, Stuart H.M.; Walpole, Matt; Collen, Ben; Van Strien, Arco; Scharlemann, Jorn P.W.; Almond, Rosamunde E.A.; Baillie, Jonathan E.M.; Bomhard, Bastian; Brown, Claire; Bruno, John; Carpenter, Kent E.; Carr, Genevieve M.; Chanson, Janice; Chenery, Anna M.; Csirke, Jorge; Davidson, Nick C.; Dentener, Frank; Foster, Matt; Galli, Alessandro; Galloway, James N.; Genovesi, Piero; Gregory, Richard D.; Hockings, Marc; Kapos, Valerie; Lamarque, Jean-Francois; Leverington, Fiona; Loh, Jonathan; McGeoch, Melodie A.; McRae, Louise; Minasyan, Anahit; Morcillo, Monica Hernandez; Oldfield, Thomasina E.E.; Pauly, Daniel; Quader, Suhel; Revenga, Carmen; Sauer, John R.; Skolnik, Benjamin; Spear, Dian; Stanwell-Smith, Damon; Stuart, Simon N.; Symes, Andy; Tierney, Megan; Tyrrell, Tristan D.; Vie, Jean-Christophe; Watson, Reg

    2011-01-01

    In 2002, world leaders committed, through the Convention on Biological Diversity, to achieve a significant reduction in the rate of biodiversity loss by 2010. We compiled 31 indicators to report on progress toward this target. Most indicators of the state of biodiversity (covering species' population trends, extinction risk, habitat extent and condition, and community composition) showed declines, with no significant recent reductions in rate, whereas indicators of pressures on biodiversity (including resource consumption, invasive alien species, nitrogen pollution, overexploitation, and climate change impacts) showed increases. Despite some local successes and increasing responses (including extent and biodiversity coverage of protected areas, sustainable forest management, policy responses to invasive alien species, and biodiversity-related aid), the rate of biodiversity loss does not appear to be slowing.

  20. Migraine and cognitive decline: A topical review

    PubMed Central

    Rist, Pamela M.; Kurth, Tobias

    2013-01-01

    Migraine has been linked with an increased risk of stroke and an increased prevalence of clinically silent brain lesions and white matter hyperintensities. As it is known that stroke and structural brain lesions are associated with an increased risk of cognitive decline, it has been hypothesized that migraine may be a progressive brain disorder and associated with an increased risk of cognitive impairment. Given the prevalence of migraine in the population, especially among women, and the aging of the population, an association between migraine and cognitive impairment would have substantial public health implications. In this review, we will summarize the existing evidence evaluating the association between migraine and cognitive function. Additionally, we will discuss methodological issues in migraine and cognitive function assessment and elaborate on study design strategies to address this important question. PMID:23405909

  1. Consequences of Age-Related Cognitive Declines

    PubMed Central

    Salthouse, Timothy

    2013-01-01

    Adult age differences in a variety of cognitive abilities are well documented, and many of those abilities have been found to be related to success in the workplace and in everyday life. However, increased age is seldom associated with lower levels of real-world functioning, and the reasons for this lab-life discrepancy are not well understood. This article briefly reviews research concerned with relations of age to cognition, relations of cognition to successful functioning outside the laboratory, and relations of age to measures of work performance and achievement. The final section discusses several possible explanations for why there are often little or no consequences of age-related cognitive declines in everyday functioning. PMID:21740223

  2. Global biodiversity: indicators of recent declines.

    PubMed

    Butchart, Stuart H M; Walpole, Matt; Collen, Ben; van Strien, Arco; Scharlemann, Jörn P W; Almond, Rosamunde E A; Baillie, Jonathan E M; Bomhard, Bastian; Brown, Claire; Bruno, John; Carpenter, Kent E; Carr, Geneviève M; Chanson, Janice; Chenery, Anna M; Csirke, Jorge; Davidson, Nick C; Dentener, Frank; Foster, Matt; Galli, Alessandro; Galloway, James N; Genovesi, Piero; Gregory, Richard D; Hockings, Marc; Kapos, Valerie; Lamarque, Jean-Francois; Leverington, Fiona; Loh, Jonathan; McGeoch, Melodie A; McRae, Louise; Minasyan, Anahit; Hernández Morcillo, Monica; Oldfield, Thomasina E E; Pauly, Daniel; Quader, Suhel; Revenga, Carmen; Sauer, John R; Skolnik, Benjamin; Spear, Dian; Stanwell-Smith, Damon; Stuart, Simon N; Symes, Andy; Tierney, Megan; Tyrrell, Tristan D; Vié, Jean-Christophe; Watson, Reg

    2010-05-28

    In 2002, world leaders committed, through the Convention on Biological Diversity, to achieve a significant reduction in the rate of biodiversity loss by 2010. We compiled 31 indicators to report on progress toward this target. Most indicators of the state of biodiversity (covering species' population trends, extinction risk, habitat extent and condition, and community composition) showed declines, with no significant recent reductions in rate, whereas indicators of pressures on biodiversity (including resource consumption, invasive alien species, nitrogen pollution, overexploitation, and climate change impacts) showed increases. Despite some local successes and increasing responses (including extent and biodiversity coverage of protected areas, sustainable forest management, policy responses to invasive alien species, and biodiversity-related aid), the rate of biodiversity loss does not appear to be slowing. PMID:20430971

  3. The Declining Infrastructure of the Aging Brain

    PubMed Central

    2011-01-01

    Abstract Great effort has been dedicated to mapping the functional architecture of the brain in health and disease. The neural centers that support cognition and behavior are the “hubs” defining the salient geographic landmarks of the cerebral topography. Similar to urban cartography, however, the functionality of these hubs is critically dependent on the infrastructure permitting the transfer of relevant information from site to site, and this infrastructure is susceptible to deterioration. The groundwork of the brain lies in the form of the complexly organized myelinated nerve fibers responsible for the inter-regional transmission of electrical impulses among distinct neural areas. Damage to the myelin sheath and reduction in the total number of nerve fibers with aging are thought to result in a degradation in the efficiency of communication among neural regions and to contribute to the decline of function in older adults. This article describes selected studies that are relevant to understanding the deterioration in structural connectivity of the aging brain with a focus on potential consequences to functional network activity. First, the neural substrates of connectivity and techniques used in the study of connectivity are described with a focus on neuroimaging methodologies. This is followed with discussion of the negative effects of age on connective integrity, and the possible mechanisms and neural and cognitive consequences of this progressive disconnection. Given the potential for natural repair of certain elements of the connective network, understanding the basis of age-associated decline in connectivity could have important implications with regard to the amelioration of neural dysfunction and the restoration of the infrastructure necessary for optimal function in older adults. PMID:22432418

  4. Surprising decline in Iran's growth rates.

    PubMed

    Roudi, F

    1997-11-01

    According to Iran's 1996 census, the country's population was 60 million, about 6-7 million people fewer than estimates used by the UN and other international organizations. These findings surprised Iranian demographers and have been examined with skepticism outside of the country. However, if Iran's 1986 and 1996 censuses are comparable and children were not undercounted, these results indicate a remarkable decline in fertility. The proportion of Iran's population under age 5 years fell from 18% in 1986 to 10% in 1996. An Institut National d'Etudes Demographiques, Paris, study published in 1996 estimated that Iran's total fertility rate (TFR) fell from an average of 6.2 children/woman in 1986 to 3.5 in 1993. However, based upon analyses of sample surveys, the Iranian government's health ministry reported that the TFR dropped from 5.0 in 1991 to 3.3 in 1995. Irrespective of questions over the magnitude of Iran's fertility decline, it is clear that the Iranian government is committed to limiting population growth. The UN Population Fund considers Iran's family planning program to be one of the world's best-functioning, with the Ministry of Health Care and Medical Education providing free contraceptives. A bill was passed in 1993 which penalizes couples who have more than 3 children and posters around the country encourage the one- or two-child family. Iran's family planning program is integrated into the national primary health care system and provides a broad range of reproductive health services to women. The program is also the only one in the region which promotes both male and female sterilization. PMID:12321257

  5. The decline in child mortality: a reappraisal.

    PubMed Central

    Ahmad, O. B.; Lopez, A. D.; Inoue, M.

    2000-01-01

    The present paper examines, describes and documents country-specific trends in under-five mortality rates (i.e., mortality among children under five years of age) in the 1990s. Our analysis updates previous studies by UNICEF, the World Bank and the United Nations. It identifies countries and WHO regions where sustained improvement has occurred and those where setbacks are evident. A consistent series of estimates of under-five mortality rate is provided and an indication is given of historical trends during the period 1950-2000 for both developed and developing countries. It is estimated that 10.5 million children aged 0-4 years died in 1999, about 2.2 million or 17.5% fewer than a decade earlier. On average about 15% of newborn children in Africa are expected to die before reaching their fifth birthday. The corresponding figures for many other parts of the developing world are in the range 3-8% and that for Europe is under 2%. During the 1990s the decline in child mortality decelerated in all the WHO regions except the Western Pacific but there is no widespread evidence of rising child mortality rates. At the country level there are exceptions in southern Africa where the prevalence of HIV is extremely high and in Asia where a few countries are beset by economic difficulties. The slowdown in the rate of decline is of particular concern in Africa and South-East Asia because it is occurring at relatively high levels of mortality, and in countries experiencing severe economic dislocation. As the HIV/AIDS epidemic continues in Africa, particularly southern Africa, and in parts of Asia, further reductions in child mortality become increasingly unlikely until substantial progress in controlling the spread of HIV is achieved. PMID:11100613

  6. Depressed Mood Mediates Decline in Cognitive Processing Speed in Caregivers

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Vitaliano, Peter P.; Zhang, Jianping; Young, Heather M.; Caswell, Lisa W.; Scanlan, James M.; Echeverria, Diana

    2009-01-01

    Purpose: Very few studies have examined cognitive decline in caregivers versus noncaregivers, and only 1 study has examined mediators of such decline. We evaluated the relationship between caregiver status and decline on the digit symbol test (DST; a measure of processing speed, attention, cognitive-motor translation, and visual scanning) and…

  7. Effects of Declining Enrollments: A New Mexico Study.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Davis, Beatrice L.

    Because 66 of New Mexico's 89 public school districts experienced declines in 1981-82 enrollments and most were unable to decrease educational costs at the same rate as their decline in enrollment, the legislature requested a study on effects of declining enrollment and possible adjustments to the school distribution funding formula to cushion…

  8. Declining Enrollment: Current Trends in School Policies & Programs.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    National School Public Relations Association, Arlington, VA.

    Declines in student population are a fact of life in most of the nation's school districts. With the declines come unprecedented challenges and opportunities; sensitive community relations problems involved with school closings; costs that continue to rise despite the decline in student numbers; the need for staff reductions; the need for…

  9. Dissociation of force decline from calcium decline by preload in isolated rabbit myocardium.

    PubMed

    Monasky, Michelle M; Varian, Kenneth D; Davis, Jonathan P; Janssen, Paul M L

    2008-05-01

    It is well known that the rate of intracellular calcium ([Ca2+]i) decline is an important factor governing relaxation in unloaded myocardium. However, it remains unclear to what extent, under near physiological conditions, the intracellular calcium transient amplitude and kinetics contribute to the length-dependent increase in force and increase in duration of relaxation. We hypothesize that myofilament properties rather than calcium transient decline primarily determines the duration of relaxation in adult mammalian myocardium. To test this hypothesis, we simultaneously measured force of contraction and calibrated [Ca2+]i transients in isolated, thin rabbit trabeculae at various lengths at 37 degrees C. Time from peak tension to 50% relaxation (RT50(tension)) increases significantly with length (from 49.8+/-3.4 to 83.8+/-7.4 ms at an [Ca2+]o of 2.5 mM), whereas time from peak calcium to 50% decline (RT50(calcium)) was not prolonged (from 124.8+/-5.3 to 107.7+/-11.4 ms at an [Ca2+]o of 2.5 mM). Analysis of variance revealed that RT50(tension) is significantly correlated with length (P<0.0001). At optimal length, varying the extracellular calcium concentration increased both developed force and calcium transient amplitude, but RT50(tension) remained unchanged (P=0.90), whereas intracellular calcium decline actually accelerated (P<0.05). Thus, an increase in muscle length will result in an increase in both force and duration of relaxation, whereas the latter is not primarily governed by the rate of [Ca2+]i decline. PMID:18057959

  10. Red spruce decline in the northeastern US: hypotheses regarding the role of acid rain

    SciTech Connect

    Johnson, A.H.

    1983-11-01

    Red spruce have died in abnormal numbers in the high elevation forests of New York and New England during the past two decades while spruce in the southern Appalachians remain healthy. Investigations of insect damage, fungai pathogens, successional dynamics, competitive status, climate and weather patterns, and possible pollutant effects indicate that the decline was triggered by abiotic stress during the dry years of the 1960s. Tree response, as recorded in the pattern of annual rings, and the wide range of soil conditions in which spruce are declining, suggest drought or dry summers as key factors. Hypotheses regarding the role of acid deposition induced stress have been offered, but at present there is not evidence which clearly links acid deposition to spruce decline. Indirect effects of acid deposition on soils, direct effects of acid deposition on foliage, and interactions of acid deposition and drought stress are possible but unproven pathways by which acid deposition could be involved. 23 references, 6 figures, 1 table.