Science.gov

Sample records for recruits co-inhabiting burrows

  1. Toxicity of microcystin-LR, a cyanobacterial toxin, to multiple life stages of the burrowing mayfly, Hexagenia, and possible implications for recruitment.

    PubMed

    Smith, Juliette L; Boyer, Gregory L; Mills, Edward; Schulz, Kimberly L

    2008-08-01

    Burrowing mayflies, genus Hexagenia, were extirpated from the major water bodies of North America in the early 1950s, paralleling an increase in eutrophication and organic pollution, and a decrease in dissolved oxygen concentrations. Burrowing mayflies recolonized the western basin of Lake Erie, but remain absent in other former habitats such as Oneida Lake, New York. Eutrophication is commonly associated with a shift in the phytoplankton community toward dominance by cyanobacteria, and therefore, one class of cyanobacterial toxins, microcystins, were investigated as a contributing factor to Hexagenia's eradication or as an impediment to recolonization. Laboratory experiments were conducted to determine if microcystin-LR (MC-LR) produced negative effects on Hexagenia at three points within its life cycle: egg, hatchling nymph (<24-h old, <1 mm total length), and pre-emergence nymph (>17 mm). Treatment concentrations ranged from the guideline set by the World Health Organization for drinking water (0.001 microg mL(-1)) to 0.1 microg mL(-1) for the egg experiment and 10 microg mL(-1) for the nymph trials. Eggs showed a delay in hatching and an altered distribution of hatching over the study period when submerged in 0.1 microg mL(-1) MC-LR (an elevated concentration representative of bloom scum). The 72-h (1.1 microg mL(-1)) and 96-h (0.049 microg mL(-1)) LC(50) values for hatchling nymphs exceeded typical bloom concentrations of North American lakes, (0.01 microg mL(-1)). Large nymphs were more tolerant of the toxin, as indicated by 100% survival over seven days exposure to 10 microg mL(-1), suggesting older larvae can withstand brief encounters with high microcystin levels for at least short periods of time. The sensitivity of young nymphs and eggs to MC-LR may have implications for the recruitment of the genus in water bodies with persistent summer cyanobacterial blooms. PMID:18246549

  2. Burrowing mechanics: burrow extension by crack propagation.

    PubMed

    Dorgan, Kelly M; Jumars, Peter A; Johnson, Bruce; Boudreau, B P; Landis, Eric

    2005-02-01

    Until now, the analysis of burrowing mechanics has neglected the mechanical properties of impeding, muddy, cohesive sediments, which behave like elastic solids. Here we show that burrowers can progress through such sediments by using a mechanically efficient, previously unsuspected mechanism--crack propagation--in which an alternating 'anchor' system of burrowing serves as a wedge to extend the crack-shaped burrow. The force required to propagate cracks through sediment in this way is relatively small: we find that the force exerted by the annelid worm Nereis virens in making and moving into such a burrow amounts to less than one-tenth of the force it needs to use against rigid aquarium walls. PMID:15690029

  3. Earliest evidence of cynodont burrowing.

    PubMed

    Damiani, Ross; Modesto, Sean; Yates, Adam; Neveling, Johann

    2003-08-22

    A 251 million year old partial burrow cast containing an articulated skeleton of the mammal-like carnivore Thrinaxodon liorhinus is the oldest evidence for burrowing by a cynodont synapsid. The burrow cast comes from terrestrial flood plain sediments close to the Permian-Triassic boundary in the Karoo of South Africa. Together with those of the later cynodont Trirachodon, the Thrinaxodon burrow cast indicates that burrow-making was broadly distributed in basal synapsids and has a long history in non-mammalian synapsid evolution. A reconstruction of its appendicular skeleton in cross-section indicates that Thrinaxodon was able to adopt a facultatively mammalian stance within its burrow shaft. Burrows of cynodont design are more common in Triassic rocks than previously realized, and suggest that burrowing may represent an adaptive response by cynodonts to the environmental conditions associated with the mass extinction event that punctuated the end of the preceding Permian period. The widespread occurrence of burrowing among extant mammals implies that the ancient synapsid ability to burrow conferred a strong adaptive value in the evolution of Mammalia. PMID:12965004

  4. Earliest evidence of cynodont burrowing.

    PubMed Central

    Damiani, Ross; Modesto, Sean; Yates, Adam; Neveling, Johann

    2003-01-01

    A 251 million year old partial burrow cast containing an articulated skeleton of the mammal-like carnivore Thrinaxodon liorhinus is the oldest evidence for burrowing by a cynodont synapsid. The burrow cast comes from terrestrial flood plain sediments close to the Permian-Triassic boundary in the Karoo of South Africa. Together with those of the later cynodont Trirachodon, the Thrinaxodon burrow cast indicates that burrow-making was broadly distributed in basal synapsids and has a long history in non-mammalian synapsid evolution. A reconstruction of its appendicular skeleton in cross-section indicates that Thrinaxodon was able to adopt a facultatively mammalian stance within its burrow shaft. Burrows of cynodont design are more common in Triassic rocks than previously realized, and suggest that burrowing may represent an adaptive response by cynodonts to the environmental conditions associated with the mass extinction event that punctuated the end of the preceding Permian period. The widespread occurrence of burrowing among extant mammals implies that the ancient synapsid ability to burrow conferred a strong adaptive value in the evolution of Mammalia. PMID:12965004

  5. Genetic characterization of the burrowing shrimp (Neotrypaea californiensis) in Washington and Oregon estuaries

    EPA Science Inventory

    The Ghost shrimp, (Neotrypaea californiensis) are burrowers, which have a wide demographic distribution along the United States Pacific Coast. Our study used genetic analysis to estimate the source populations of larvae recruiting into estuaries to allow a greater understanding ...

  6. Depth of artificial Burrowing Owl burrows affects thermal suitability and occupancy

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Nadeau, Christopher P.; Conway, Courtney J.; Rathbun, Nathan

    2015-01-01

    Many organizations have installed artificial burrows to help bolster local Burrowing Owl (Athene cunicularia) populations. However, occupancy probability and reproductive success in artificial burrows varies within and among burrow installations. We evaluated the possibility that depth below ground might explain differences in occupancy probability and reproductive success by affecting the temperature of artificial burrows. We measured burrow temperatures from March to July 2010 in 27 artificial burrows in southern California that were buried 15–76 cm below the surface (measured between the surface and the top of the burrow chamber). Burrow depth was one of several characteristics that affected burrow temperature. Burrow temperature decreased by 0.03°C per cm of soil on top of the burrow. The percentage of time that artificial burrows provided a thermal refuge from above-ground temperature decreased with burrow depth and ranged between 50% and 58% among burrows. The percentage of time that burrow temperature was optimal for incubating females also decreased with burrow depth and ranged between 27% and 100% among burrows. However, the percentage of time that burrow temperature was optimal for unattended eggs increased with burrow depth and ranged between 11% and 95% among burrows. We found no effect of burrow depth on reproductive success across 21 nesting attempts. However, occupancy probability had a non-linear relationship with burrow depth. The shallowest burrows (15 cm) had a moderate probability of being occupied (0.46), burrows between 28 and 40 cm had the highest probability of being occupied (>0.80), and burrows >53 cm had the lowest probability of being occupied (<0.43). Burrowing Owls may prefer burrows at moderate depths because these burrows provide a thermal refuge from above-ground temperatures, and are often cool enough to allow females to leave eggs unattended before the onset of full-time incubation, but not too cool for incubating females that

  7. Burrow Occupancy Patterns of the Western Burrowing Owl in Southern Nevada

    SciTech Connect

    Paul D. Greger and Derek B. Hall

    2009-09-01

    Understanding long-term patterns of burrow occupancy for the Western Burrowing Owl (Athene cunicularia hypugaea) is necessary for the conservation of this species, especially in arid, desert ecosystems where burrow occupancy data are lacking. Monthly burrow monitoring was conducted over a 4-year period (1997–2001) in southern Nevada to determine burrow occupancy patterns of Burrowing Owls and to evaluate the effects of burrow type and desert region on burrow occupancy. Burrow occupancy occurred year-round and was most consistent in the Transition region and tended to be lowest in the Mojave Desert region. Peak burrow occupancy occurred during March through May, followed by a gradual decline in occupancy through the summer and fall until January and February, when occupancy was lowest. Occupancy was significantly higher at sites with both culvert and pipe burrows than at sites with earthen burrows in disturbed habitat or earthen burrows in natural habitat. Breeding-season occupancy was not significantly higher in wetter, cooler portions (e.g., Great Basin desert region) of the study area. Results suggest that occupancy is influenced by habitat features—such as suitable burrows in open areas with low vegetation—and climatic regime.

  8. Burrowing owl nesting productivity: A comparison between artificial and natural burrows on and off golf courses

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Smith, M.D.; Conway, C.J.; Ellis, L.A.

    2005-01-01

    Burrowing owl (Athene cunicularia) populations are declining in many portions of their range, and lack of suitable nesting burrows is thought to be one reason for observed declines. Burrowing owls are attracted to golf courses because the birds generally nest and forage in short-grass, open areas, yet golf courses seldom have suitable nesting burrows. We examined the efficacy of installing artificial nesting burrows on golf courses as a way to help restore local burrowing owl populations. From 2001-2004 we monitored over 175 natural burrows off golf courses, 14 natural burrows on golf courses, 86 artificial burrows off golf courses, and 130 artificial burrows on golf courses. Owls located and used 8 of the 130 artificial burrows installed on golf courses (4 were used as nests). Owls selected burrows that were closer to existing natural burrows, farther from maintained areas (areas receiving turf maintenance by golf course staff), and farther from sprinkler heads. All 4 of the artificial burrows used as nests successfully fledged young, and annual site fidelity for owls nesting on golf courses was higher than for owls nesting off golf courses. However, annual fecundity of owls nesting on golf courses was lower than that of owls nesting off golf courses. If golf courses have sufficiently large nonmaintained areas and there are nesting owls nearby, course managers potentially can help in restoring local burrowing owl populations by installing artificial nesting burrows on the periphery of the course. However, the low fecundity on golf courses reported here should be more thoroughly examined before artificial burrows are used to attract owls to golf courses.

  9. Rugged Video System For Inspecting Animal Burrows

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Triandafils, Dick; Maples, Art; Breininger, Dave

    1992-01-01

    Video system designed for examining interiors of burrows of gopher tortoises, 5 in. (13 cm) in diameter or greater, to depth of 18 ft. (about 5.5 m), includes video camera, video cassette recorder (VCR), television monitor, control unit, and power supply, all carried in backpack. Polyvinyl chloride (PVC) poles used to maneuver camera into (and out of) burrows, stiff enough to push camera into burrow, but flexible enough to bend around curves. Adult tortoises and other burrow inhabitants observable, young tortoises and such small animals as mice obscured by sand or debris.

  10. Localized fluidization burrowing mechanics of Ensis directus.

    PubMed

    Winter, Amos G; Deits, Robin L H; Hosoi, A E

    2012-06-15

    Muscle measurements of Ensis directus, the Atlantic razor clam, indicate that the organism only has sufficient strength to burrow a few centimeters into the soil, yet razor clams burrow to over 70 cm. In this paper, we show that the animal uses the motions of its valves to locally fluidize the surrounding soil and reduce burrowing drag. Substrate deformations were measured using particle image velocimetry (PIV) in a novel visualization system that enabled us to see through the soil and watch E. directus burrow in situ. PIV data, supported by soil and fluid mechanics theory, show that contraction of the valves of E. directus locally fluidizes the surrounding soil. Particle and fluid mixtures can be modeled as a Newtonian fluid with an effective viscosity based on the local void fraction. Using these models, we demonstrate that E. directus is strong enough to reach full burrow depth in fluidized soil, but not in static soil. Furthermore, we show that the method of localized fluidization reduces the amount of energy required to reach burrow depth by an order of magnitude compared with penetrating static soil, and leads to a burrowing energy that scales linearly with depth rather than with depth squared. PMID:22623195

  11. The biomechanics of burrowing and boring.

    PubMed

    Dorgan, Kelly M

    2015-01-15

    Burrowers and borers are ecosystem engineers that alter their physical environments through bioturbation, bioirrigation and bioerosion. The mechanisms of moving through solid substrata by burrowing or boring depend on the mechanical properties of the medium and the size and morphology of the organism. For burrowing animals, mud differs mechanically from sand; in mud, sediment grains are suspended in an organic matrix that fails by fracture. Macrofauna extend burrows through this elastic mud by fracture. Sand is granular and non-cohesive, enabling grains to more easily move relative to each other, and macrofaunal burrowers use fluidization or plastic rearrangement of grains. In both sand and mud, peristaltic movements apply normal forces and reduce shear. Excavation and localized grain compaction are mechanisms that plastically deform sediments and are effective in both mud and sand, with bulk excavation being used by larger organisms and localized compaction by smaller organisms. Mechanical boring of hard substrata is an extreme form of excavation in which no compaction of burrow walls occurs and grains are abraded with rigid, hard structures. Chemical boring involves secretion to dissolve or soften generally carbonate substrata. Despite substantial differences in the mechanics of the media, similar burrowing behaviors are effective in mud and sand. PMID:25609781

  12. Burrowing Owls, Pulex irritans, and Plague.

    PubMed

    Belthoff, James R; Bernhardt, Scott A; Ball, Christopher L; Gregg, Michael; Johnson, David H; Ketterling, Rachel; Price, Emily; Tinker, Juliette K

    2015-09-01

    Western Burrowing Owls (Athene cunicularia hypugaea) are small, ground-dwelling owls of western North America that frequent prairie dog (Cynomys spp.) towns and other grasslands. Because they rely on rodent prey and occupy burrows once or concurrently inhabited by fossorial mammals, the owls often harbor fleas. We examined the potential role of fleas found on burrowing owls in plague dynamics by evaluating prevalence of Yersinia pestis in fleas collected from burrowing owls and in owl blood. During 2012-2013, fleas and blood were collected from burrowing owls in portions of five states with endemic plague-Idaho, Oregon, Washington, Colorado, and South Dakota. Fleas were enumerated, taxonomically identified, pooled by nest, and assayed for Y. pestis using culturing and molecular (PCR) approaches. Owl blood underwent serological analysis for plague antibodies and nested PCR for detection of Y. pestis. Of more than 4750 fleas collected from owls, Pulex irritans, a known plague vector in portions of its range, comprised more than 99.4%. However, diagnostic tests for Y. pestis of flea pools (culturing and PCR) and owl blood (PCR and serology) were negative. Thus, even though fleas were prevalent on burrowing owls and the potential for a relationship with burrowing owls as a phoretic host of infected fleas exists, we found no evidence of Y. pestis in sampled fleas or in owls that harbored them. We suggest that studies similar to those reported here during plague epizootics will be especially useful for confirming these results. PMID:26367482

  13. Using Animal Burrows to Integrate Math and Biology

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Crowe, Mary; Boston, Kellie

    2004-01-01

    In this activity students examine burrow casts to learn about burrowing animals and practice their math skills. Students compute the volume and average circumference of a burrow. They also determine whether a relationship exists between burrow volume and the size of the organism that created it. Students use science as inquiry as they analyze and…

  14. Burrowing inhibition by fine textured beach fill: Implications for recovery of beach ecosystems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Viola, Sloane M.; Hubbard, David M.; Dugan, Jenifer E.; Schooler, Nicholas K.

    2014-10-01

    Beach nourishment is often considered the most environmentally sound method of maintaining eroding shorelines. However, the ecological consequences are poorly understood. Fill activities cause intense disturbance and high mortality and have the potential to alter the diversity, abundance, and distribution of intertidal macroinvertebrates for months to years. Ecological recovery following fill activities depends on successful recolonization and recruitment of the entire sandy intertidal community. The use of incompatible sediments as fill material can strongly affect ecosystem recovery. We hypothesized that burrowing inhibition of intertidal animals by incompatible fine fill sediments contributes to ecological impacts and limits recovery in beach ecosystems. We experimentally investigated the influence of intertidal zone and burrowing mode on responses of beach invertebrates to altered sediment texture (28-38% fines), and ultimately the potential for colonization and recovery of beaches disturbed by beach filling. Using experimental trials in fill material and natural beach sand, we found that the mismatched fine fill sediments significantly inhibited burrowing of characteristic species from all intertidal zones, including sand crabs, clams, polychaetes, isopods, and talitrid amphipods. Burrowing performance of all five species we tested was consistently reduced in the fill material and burrowing was completely inhibited for several species. The threshold for burrowing inhibition by fine sediment content in middle and lower beach macroinvertebrates varied by species, with highest sensitivity for the polychaete (4% fines, below the USA regulatory limit of 10% fines), followed by sand crabs and clams (20% fines). These results suggest broader investigation of thresholds for burrowing inhibition in fine fill material is needed for beach animals. Burrowing inhibition caused by mismatched fill sediments exposes beach macroinvertebrates to stresses, which could depress

  15. Application of morphologic burrow architects: lungfish or crayfish?

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Hasiotis, Stephen T.; Mitchell, Charles E.; Dubiel, Russell R.

    1993-01-01

    A methodology for trace fossil identification using burrowing signatures is tested by evaluating ancient and modern lungfish and crayfish burrows and comparing them to previously undescribed burrows in a stratigraphic interval thought to contain both lungfish and crayfish burrows. Permian burrows that bear skeletal remains of the lungfish Gnathorhiza, from museum collections, were evaluated to identify unique burrow morphologies that could be used to distinguish lungfish from crayfish burrows when fossil remains are absent. The lungfish burrows were evaluated for details of the burrowing mechanism preserved in the burrow morphologies together forming burrowing signatures and were compared to new burrows in the Chinle Formation of western Colorado to test the methodology of using burrow signatures to identify unknown burrows. Permian lungfish aestivation burrows show simple, nearly vertical, unbranched architectures and relatively smooth surficial morphologies with characteristic quasi‐horizontal striae on the burrow walls and vertical striae on the bulbous terminus. Burrow lengths do not exceed 0.5 m. In contrast, modern and ancient crayfish burrows exhibit simple to highly complex architectures with highly textured surficial morphologies. Burrow lengths may reach 4 to 5 m. Burrow morphologies unlike those identified in Gnathorhiza aestivation burrows were found in four burrow groups from museum collections. Two of these groups exhibit simple architectures and horizontal striae that were greater in sinuosity and magnitude, respectively. One of these burrows contains the remains of Lysorophus, but the burrow surface reveals no reliable surficial characteristics. It is not clear whether Lysorophus truly burrowed or merely occupied a pre‐existing structure. The other two groups exhibit surficial morphologies similar to those found on modern and ancient crayfish burrows and may provide evidence of freshwater crayfish in the Permian. Burrows from the Upper Triassic

  16. Burrow extension with a proboscis: mechanics of burrowing by the glycerid Hemipodus simplex.

    PubMed

    Murphy, Elizabeth A K; Dorgan, Kelly M

    2011-03-15

    Burrowing marine infauna are morphologically diverse and ecologically important as ecosystem engineers. The polychaetes Nereis virens and Cirriformia moorei extend their burrows by crack propagation. Nereis virens does so by everting its pharynx and C. moorei, lacking an eversible pharynx or proboscis, uses its hydrostatic skeleton to expand its anterior. Both behaviors apply stress to the burrow wall that is amplified at the tip of the crack, which extends by fracture. That two species with such distinct morphologies and life histories both burrow by fracturing sediment suggests that this mechanism may be widespread among burrowers. We tested this hypothesis with the glycerid polychaete Hemipodus simplex, which has an eversible proboscis that is much longer and everts more rapidly than the pharynx of N. virens. When the proboscis is fully everted, the tip flares out wider than the rest of the proboscis, creating a shape and applying a stress distribution similar to that of N. virens and resulting in relatively large forces near the tip of the crack. These forces are larger than necessary to extend the crack by fracture and are surprisingly uncorrelated with the resulting stress amplification at the crack tip, which is also larger than necessary to extend the burrow by fracture. These large forces may plastically deform the mud, allowing the worm to build a semi-permanent burrow. Our results illustrate that similar mechanisms of burrowing are used by morphologically different burrowers. PMID:21346130

  17. The burrowing origin of modern snakes

    PubMed Central

    Yi, Hongyu; Norell, Mark A.

    2015-01-01

    Modern snakes probably originated as habitat specialists, but it controversial unclear whether they were ancestrally terrestrial burrowers or marine swimmers. We used x-ray virtual models of the inner ear to predict the habit of Dinilysia patagonica, a stem snake closely related to the origin of modern snakes. Previous work has shown that modern snakes perceive substrate vibrations via their inner ear. Our data show that D. patagonica and modern burrowing squamates share a unique spherical vestibule in the inner ear, as compared with swimmers and habitat generalists. We built predictive models for snake habit based on their vestibular shape, which estimated D. patagonica and the hypothetical ancestor of crown snakes as burrowers with high probabilities. This study provides an extensive comparative data set to test fossoriality quantitatively in stem snakes, and it shows that burrowing was predominant in the lineages leading to modern crown snakes. PMID:26702436

  18. The zoogeomorphic characteristics of burrows and burrowing by nine-banded armadillos (Dasypus novemcinctus)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sawyer, Carol F.; Brinkman, Donald C.; Walker, Vincent D.; Covington, Tyler D.; Stienstraw, Elizabeth A.

    2012-07-01

    Burrowing animals act like a geomorphic disturbance, changing the environment through soil excavation, landform creation and bioturbation. The potential zoogeomorphic effects of these actions include modification of surficial features, increased soil erosion, changes in the growth and distribution of vegetation, and modifications to soil fertility. The burrowing ninebanded armadillo (Dasypus novemcinctus) migrated to North America prior to the 1850s and has since continued to expand its habitat to the American Southeast and parts of the Midwest. Little data are available on the zoogeomorphic impact of the burrowing nature of this species, making it difficult to predict future implications of this animal as it continues to migrate into new regions. On the University of South Alabama campus, in Mobile, Alabama, armadillos are present on a 35-hectare unprotected forested preserve used by the university community for outdoor activities and research. To understand the potential zoogeomorphic impact of armadillo burrows on the local environment, morphometric measurements were recorded on 187 burrows located in the study area. Using dimensions of burrow entrances and minimum lengths of tunnels in calculations, armadillos excavated approximately 0.029 m3 to 0.04 m3 of soil from each burrow. The entrances to burrows averaged 33.5° in slope and tended to be located in a microhabitat of a fallen tree, exposed tree roots, or a sideslope. Persistent fall of forest litter and anthropogenic modifications makes positive identification of spoil mounds possible in approximately half of the burrow sites. Surface modification by armadillos is ongoing in the study area with over half of the burrows classified as active during the four-month project. We concluded that, for southern Alabama, armadillos prefer to excavate burrows into sideslopes, and that given the lack of ground cover, sandy soil, and humid climate, armadillos are an important zoogeomorphic agent in the region.

  19. Dominant infaunal communities at risk in shoreline habitats: Burrowing Thalassinid Crustacea. Final report

    SciTech Connect

    Felder, D.L.; Griffis, R.B.

    1994-04-01

    Oil contamination and physical perturbation of intertidal and shallow subtidal substrates threaten mass mortalities of ghost shrimp (Lepidophthalmus and Callichirus) that occur in extensive populations in coastal habitats of the northern Gulf of Mexico. These species may play important ecological roles in determining coastal habitat quality and reductions in densities may substantially alter the physical, chemical, and biological characteristics of benthic habitats. In the Gulf of Mexico, ghost shrimp burrows form traps for entrainment of oil into sediments and beachfront oil accumulations may result in mass mortalities. This study documents the population biology and ecological role of ghost shrimp in beachfront and bay habitats of the northern Gulf of Mexico. Seasonal variation in breeding, recruitment, growth, abundance and biomass is presented for two species. Restoration of diminished populations occurs through planktonic recruitment and relocation of burrowed postlarvae. Populations increase the sediment-water interface by adding 1-2 sq m of burrow wall beneath each sq m sediment surface, and increase the flux of nutrients from sediments to the water column by pumping nutrient-rich water from burrows.

  20. Burrowing energetics of the Giant Burrowing Cockroach Macropanesthia rhinoceros: an allometric study.

    PubMed

    Xu, Liangwen; Snelling, Edward P; Seymour, Roger S

    2014-11-01

    Burrowing is an important life strategy for many insects, yet the energetic cost of constructing burrows has never been studied in insects of different sizes. Open flow respirometry was used to determine the allometric scaling of standard metabolic rate (MRS) and burrowing metabolic rate (MRB) in the heaviest extant cockroach species, the Giant Burrowing Cockroach Macropanesthia rhinoceros, at different stages of development. At 10 °C, MRS (mW) scales with body mass (M; g) according to the allometric power equation, MRS=0.158M(0.74), at 20 °C the equation is MRS=0.470M(0.53), and at 30 °C the equation is MRS=1.22M(0.49) (overall Q10=2.23). MRS is much lower in M. rhinoceros compared to other insect species, which is consistent with several aspects of their life history, including flightlessness, extreme longevity (>5 years), burrowing, parental behaviour, and an energy-poor diet (dry eucalypt leaf litter). Energy expenditure during burrowing at 25 °C scales according to MRB=16.9M(0.44), and is approximately 17 times higher than resting rates measured at the same temperature, although the metabolic cost over a lifetime is probably low, because the animal does not burrow to find food. The net cost of transport by burrowing (Jm(-1)) scales according to NCOT=120M(0.49), and reflects the energetically demanding task of burrowing compared to other forms of locomotion. The net cost of excavating the soil (J cm(-3)) is statistically independent of body size. PMID:25257537

  1. Gopherus agassizii (desert tortoise). Burrow collapse

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Loughran, Caleb L.; Ennen, Joshua; Lovich, Jeffrey E.

    2011-01-01

    In the deserts of the southwestern U.S., burrows are utilized by the Desert Tortoise to escape environmental extremes (reviewed by Ernst and Lovich 2009. Turtles of the United States and Canada. 2nd ed. Johns Hopkins Univ. Press, Baltimore, Maryland. 827 pp.). However, the potential for mortality through burrow collapse and entrapment is poorly documented. Nicholson and Humphreys (1981. Proceedings of the Desert Tortoise Council, pp. 163−194) suggested that collapse due to livestock trampling may cause mortality. In addition, Lovich et al. (2011. Chelon. Cons. Biol. 10[1]:124–129) documented a Desert Tortoise that used a steel culvert as a burrow surrogate. The culvert filled completely with sediment following a significant rain event, entombing the animal and ultimately resulting in its death. We note that this mortality was associated with an anthropogenic structure; because tortoises are prodigious diggers, one might hypothesize that they have the ability to dig out of collapsed natural burrows in most situations. Circumstances described here presented us with an opportunity to test this hypothesis.

  2. Design of a Localized Fluidization Burrowing Robot

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dorsch, Daniel; Winter, Amos

    2014-11-01

    This presentation will focus on the critical fluid and granular mechanics principles that drove the design of RoboClam 2.0, a self-actuated, radially expanding underwater burrowing device. RoboClam 2.0 was inspired by the Atlantic razor clam, Ensis directus, which burrows by contracting its valves and fluidizing the surrounding soil to reduce burrowing drag. This contraction results in a localized fluidized region occurring 1-5 body radii away from the animal. Moving through a fluidized, rather than static, soil requires energy that scales linearly with depth, rather than depth squared. In addition to providing an advantage for the animal, localized fluidization may yield significant value to engineering applications such as subsea robot anchoring and pipe installation. RoboClam 2.0 is sized to be an anchoring platform for autonomous underwater vehicles. We will present the scaling relationships that can be used to design RoboClam derivatives for different size scales and applications. The critical speed, displacement and force with which the device must contract to create fluidization are calculated based on soil parameters. These parametric relationships allow for choosing actuators of appropriate size and power output for desired burrowing performance.

  3. A Microstructural View of Burrowing with Roboclam

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nordstrom, Kerstin; Dorsch, Dan; Losert, Wolfgang; Winter, V., Amos

    2014-03-01

    Roboclam is a burrowing technology inspired by Ensis directus, the Atlantic razor clam. The organism only has sufficient strength to burrow a few centimeters into the soil, yet razor clams dig to over 70 cm. The animal uses motions of its valves to contract and thereby locally fluidize the surrounding soil and reduce burrowing drag. Roboclam technology is valuable for subsea applications that could benefit from efficient burrowing, such as anchoring, mine detonation, and cable laying. We directly visualize the movement of soil grains during the contraction of Roboclam, using a novel index-matching technique along with particle tracking. We show that a previously developed mechanical theory for E. directus describes the size of the failure zone around contracting Roboclam, provided that the timescale of contraction is sufficiently large. We also show that the nonaffine motions of the grains are a small fraction of the motion within the fluidized zone, affirming the relevance of a continuum model for this system, even though the grain size is comparable to the size of Roboclam.

  4. Burrows of the sagebrush vole (Lemmiscus curtatus) in southeastern Idaho

    SciTech Connect

    Mullican, T.R.; Keller, B.L.

    1987-04-30

    Burrows of the sagebrush vole (Lemmiscus curtatus) were analyzed by injecting them with expanding polyurethane foam. Average mean depth +/- 1 SE of four burrows was 12.5 +/- 2.6 cm. Tunnels were wider than high and flat on the bottom. Three of four burrows were nearly linear, with an average of five entrances. Burrows usually contained one nest made of Artemisia tridentat bark. No middens or communal nests were found. The burrow structure in sagebrush habitat suggests that sagebrush voles occur singly or in pairs rather than in colonies.

  5. Chemical induction in mangrove crab megalopae, Ucides cordatus (Ucididae): Do young recruits emit metamorphosis-triggering odours as do conspecific adults?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Simith, Darlan de Jesus de Brito; Abrunhosa, Fernando Araújo; Diele, Karen

    2013-10-01

    In many brachyuran species, including the mangrove crab Ucides cordatus, water-soluble chemicals (odours) emitted by adult residents trigger metamorphosis of megalopae, probably facilitating habitat selection and settlement near conspecific crab population. New field findings revealed that early benthic crab stages co-inhabit burrows of both juveniles and adults of U. cordatus which raised the question whether megalopae are also stimulated by sexually immature juveniles. Therefore, we tested in an experimental laboratory study the hypothesis that small benthic recruits and older juveniles also emit metamorphosis-stimulating odours as do conspecific adult crabs. U. cordatus megalopae were cultivated in eight conspecific odour-treatments containing seawater previously conditioned with crabs of different carapace widths (CW 0.15-5.0 cm) and in a control treatment with filtered seawater not conditioned with crabs. In all odour-treatments, including those with small immature crabs, the percentage of metamorphosed larvae was significantly higher (≥74%) and the average development was shorter (15.8-19.3 days) than in the control group, where only 30% moulted after 25.6 ± 6.6 days of megalopal development. In addition, megalopae developed 2.7 days faster when exposed to odours from young and older juveniles compared to those larvae kept in contact with odours from conspecific adults. Our results clearly demonstrate that the emission of metamorphic odours in U. cordatus is independent of size/age or sexual maturity. The responsiveness of megalopae to chemicals emitted by resident crabs of varying ages should aid the natural recovery of U. cordatus populations in areas significantly affected by size-selective fishery where only large conspecific adults are harvested.

  6. Population trajectory of burrowing owls (Athene cunicularia) in eastern Washington

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Conway, C.J.; Pardieck, K.L.

    2006-01-01

    Anecdotal evidence suggests that burrowing owls have declined in Washington. The Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife is currently conducting a status review for burrowing owls which will help determine whether they should be listed as threatened or endangered in the state. To provide insights into the current status of burrowing owls (Athene cunicularia), we analyzed data from the North American Breeding Bird Survey using two analytical approaches to determine their current population trajectory in eastern Washington. We used a one-sample t-test to examine whether trend estimates across all BBS routes in Washington differed from zero. We also used a mixed model analysis to estimate the rate of decline in number of burrowing owls detected between 1968 and 2005. The slope in number of burrowing owls detected was negative for 12 of the 16 BBS routes in Washington that have detected burrowing owls. Numbers of breeding burrowing owls detected in eastern Washington declined at a rate of 1.5% annually. We suggest that all BBS routes that have detected burrowing owls in past years in eastern Washington be surveyed annually and additional surveys conducted to track population trends of burrowing owls at finer spatial scales in eastern Washington. In the meantime, land management and regulatory agencies should ensure that publicly managed areas with breeding burrowing owls are not degraded and should implement education and outreach programs to promote protection of privately owned areas with breeding owls.

  7. Does thermal convection occur in mammalian burrows during the night?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ganot, Y.; Weisbrod, N.; Dragila, M. I.; Nachshon, U.

    2010-12-01

    Burrowing is a common habit of mammals in arid zones, yet knowledge of environmental conditions within animal burrows, and especially of the way burrows are ventilated, is scarce. The ventilation rate of a burrow controls air composition within the burrow by driving gas exchange between the lower part of the burrow where the animal typically lives, and the atmosphere. Ventilation can be achieved by the following mechanisms: (1) diffusion; (2) external winds; (3) movement of the inhabitant within the burrow (the 'piston-effect'); and (4) natural thermal convection, a process by which a natural thermal gradient between burrow and atmosphere creates a density gradient which induces air flow. Here we investigate the role of thermal convection in burrow ventilation. For this purpose, artificial burrows (65 cm in depth and 7 cm in diameter) were drilled in loess soil in the Negev Desert of Israel and a network of thermocouples was installed to continuously monitor and record temperature distribution within these burrows. The results show that free convection occurs on a daily basis during the night and early morning. During these times, burrow air temperature was warmer than atmospheric air, and temperature readings pointed to the regular occurrence of convection flow in a thermosyphon pattern. Volume fluxes were calculated based on analytical solution and empirical correlations. For the artificial burrows investigated, an average CO2 volume flux of about 15 liter/hour was calculated during the night when convective conditions prevailed. For comparison, CO2 volume flux by steady-state diffusion alone is 3 orders of magnitude lower.

  8. The Mechanics of Localized Fluidization Burrowing

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Winter, Amos

    2013-11-01

    This presentation will focus on the granular mechanics and critical timescales related to localized fluidization burrowing, a digging method inspired by the Atlantic razor clam (Ensis directus). The animal uses motions of its valves to locally fail and then fluidize surrounding soil to reduce burrowing energy and drag. The characteristic contraction time to achieve fluidization can be determined from substrate properties. The geometry of the fluidized zone is dictated by the coefficient of lateral earth pressure and friction angle of the soil. Calculations using full ranges for these parameters indicate that the fluidized zone is a local effect, occurring between 1-5 body radii away from the animal. The energy associated with motion through fluidized substrate - characterized by a depth-independent density and viscosity - scales linearly with depth. In contrast, moving through static soil requires energy that scales with depth squared. For engineers, localized fluidization offers a mechanically simple and purely kinematic method to dramatically reduce energy costs associated with digging. This concept is demonstrated with RoboClam, an E. directus-inspired robot. Using a genetic algorithm to find optimal digging kinematics, RoboClam has achieved localized fluidization burrowing performance comparable to that of the animal, with a linear energy-depth relationship, in both idealized granular glass beads and E. directus' native cohesive mudflat habitat.

  9. Burrowing Owl Monitoring Report for Calendar Year 2012

    SciTech Connect

    Wilde, Justin W.; Lindsey, Cole T.; Nugent, John J.

    2013-03-14

    The monitoring during 2012 focused on documenting the status of known burrows. Newly identified burrows were documented while examining historical locations, during ecological resource reviews, or discovered during other monitoring efforts. The timing of the monitoring effort allowed staff to perform the surveys without disrupting any breeding or hatching, while also allowing for easy discernment of adults from juveniles, which helped in determining burrow-use type.

  10. Oxygen penetration through invertebrate burrow walls in Korean tidal flat

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Koo, Bon Joo; Koh, Chul-Hwan

    2013-12-01

    Macrofaunal burrows increase the surface area of the sediment-water interface, which has a great impact on the metabolism of aerobic microbes and the oscillation of reduced metabolites within the sediment. Given the importance of macrofauna in surficial sediments, the aim of this study is to examine the effects of burrow architectures on dissolved oxygen diffusion rates in comparison with unburrowed sediment, and thereby to evaluate the theoretical assumption used for modeling solute distribution in the burrow system using field samples. Employing microsensors, horizontal oxygen profiles were measured on a micrometer scale around burrows of seven invertebrates in tidal flats of the west coast of Korea. Oxygen diffusion distance through the burrow walls of seven invertebrates showed spatio-temporal variation with a range of 0.6 to 2.9 mm. Two groups of burrows were identified based on their oxygen diffusive properties relative to unburrowed sediments: 1) oxygen penetration similar to that of ambient sediments and 2) clearly enhanced oxygen penetration. Differences in the diffusive properties of the burrow wall were related to the burrow depth and diameter, existence of mucus lining on the wall, sediment grain size, and tidal phases. Also inhabitant activity was an important factor affecting oxygen penetration, which is discussed in the paper. These results further demonstrate that simplified assumptions (i.e. burrow structures are viewed as direct biogeochemical extensions of the sediment-water interface) may not be exact representation of the nature.

  11. Meandering worms: mechanics of undulatory burrowing in muds.

    PubMed

    Dorgan, Kelly M; Law, Chris J; Rouse, Greg W

    2013-04-22

    Recent work has shown that muddy sediments are elastic solids through which animals extend burrows by fracture, whereas non-cohesive granular sands fluidize around some burrowers. These different mechanical responses are reflected in the morphologies and behaviours of their respective inhabitants. However, Armandia brevis, a mud-burrowing opheliid polychaete, lacks an expansible anterior consistent with fracturing mud, and instead uses undulatory movements similar to those of sandfish lizards that fluidize desert sands. Here, we show that A. brevis neither fractures nor fluidizes sediments, but instead uses a third mechanism, plastically rearranging sediment grains to create a burrow. The curvature of the undulating body fits meander geometry used to describe rivers, and changes in curvature driven by muscle contraction are similar for swimming and burrowing worms, indicating that the same gait is used in both sediments and water. Large calculated friction forces for undulatory burrowers suggest that sediment mechanics affect undulatory and peristaltic burrowers differently; undulatory burrowing may be more effective for small worms that live in sediments not compacted or cohesive enough to extend burrows by fracture. PMID:23446526

  12. Meandering worms: mechanics of undulatory burrowing in muds

    PubMed Central

    Dorgan, Kelly M.; Law, Chris J.; Rouse, Greg W.

    2013-01-01

    Recent work has shown that muddy sediments are elastic solids through which animals extend burrows by fracture, whereas non-cohesive granular sands fluidize around some burrowers. These different mechanical responses are reflected in the morphologies and behaviours of their respective inhabitants. However, Armandia brevis, a mud-burrowing opheliid polychaete, lacks an expansible anterior consistent with fracturing mud, and instead uses undulatory movements similar to those of sandfish lizards that fluidize desert sands. Here, we show that A. brevis neither fractures nor fluidizes sediments, but instead uses a third mechanism, plastically rearranging sediment grains to create a burrow. The curvature of the undulating body fits meander geometry used to describe rivers, and changes in curvature driven by muscle contraction are similar for swimming and burrowing worms, indicating that the same gait is used in both sediments and water. Large calculated friction forces for undulatory burrowers suggest that sediment mechanics affect undulatory and peristaltic burrowers differently; undulatory burrowing may be more effective for small worms that live in sediments not compacted or cohesive enough to extend burrows by fracture. PMID:23446526

  13. [A preliminary study on burrow ecology of Manis pentadactyla].

    PubMed

    Wu, Shibao; Ma, Guangzhi; Chen, Hai; Xu, Zhaorong; Li, Youyu; Liu, Naifa

    2004-03-01

    A total of 61 pangolin(Manis pentadactyla) burrows at Dawuling Natural Reserve were recorded and measured from June 2000 to May 2001, and 40 of them were dissected. The results indicated that all the burrows were blind without branch. The long diameter of entrance was 14.20 +/- 2.79 cm(n = 61), and the short one was 12.50 +/- 2.83 cm(n = 61). These burrows could be divided into two types, i.e., winter burrows and summer burrows. Winter burrows were relatively deeper(1.44 +/- 0.73 m, n = 28), and summer burrows were relatively shallower (0.32 +/- 0.11 m, n = 12). The soil in burrows was usually soft, damp and thick, with a thick surface layer of organic matter. The main motive of digging burrows was to prey on termites, hibernate, rest, breed, hide, and defense. The mean residing duration of pangolin in a burrow was 12.25 +/- 2.25 d. Pangolin rarely utilized the used burrows, and the reutilization rate of used burrows was only 8.33%. The surroundings factors of 61 burrows were recorded, and divided into 9 categories and 27 subcategories. According to the occurrence frequency of each factor and the cluster analysis results of 61 burrows, the habitat selection of pangolin was discussed, which showed that pangolin preferred creating burrows at the sites with weak human disturbance (distance from disturbance source beyond 1,000 m), steep slope(30 degrees-60 degrees), half sunny and half shady slope, mixed coniferous and broadleaf forest, moderate elevation(760-1,500 m), good hiding conditions at entrance(full cover or partial cover), middle or lower slope location, and easily accessing to water source(distance from water source within 500 m). Pangolin was averse to establish burrows at the habitats with shady slope, poor hiding condition at entrance(bare), sharp steeper(> 60 degrees) or gentle (< 30) slope, higher elevation (over 1,500 m), and coniferous forest. Pangolin preferred south facing, and strongly avoided north facing entrance. PMID:15227988

  14. Burrowing activities of the larval lamprey

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Sawyer, Philip J.

    1959-01-01

    Since the appearance in 1950 of Applegate's work on the sea lamprey in Michigan (U. S. Fish and Wildl. Serv., Spec. Sci. Rept.; Fish, No. 55) and the subsequent development of means to control lampreys in the Great Lakes, biologists have accumulated much additional information on adult lampreys. Larval lampreys, however, are difficult animals to observe in the field, and many facets of their behavior are still unknown. While working with the U. S. Fish and Wildlife Service, I kept ammocetes in captivity, and was able to observe their burrowing activities.

  15. Energetics of burrowing by the cirratulid polychaete Cirriformia moorei.

    PubMed

    Dorgan, Kelly M; Lefebvre, Stephane; Stillman, Jonathon H; Koehl, M A R

    2011-07-01

    Burrowing through marine sediments has been considered to be much more energetically expensive than other forms of locomotion, but previous studies were based solely on external work calculations and lacked an understanding of the mechanical responses of sediments to forces applied by burrowers. Muddy sediments are elastic solids through which worms extend crack-shaped burrows by fracture. Here we present data on energetics of burrowing by Cirriformia moorei. We calculated the external energy per distance traveled from the sum of the work to extend the burrow by fracture and the elastic work done to displace sediment as a worm moves into the newly formed burrow to be 9.7 J kg(-1) m(-1) in gelatin and 64 J kg(-1) m(-1) in sediment, much higher than for running or walking. However, because burrowing worms travel at slow speeds, the increase in metabolic rate due to burrowing is predicted to be small. We tested this prediction by measuring aerobic metabolism (oxygen consumption rates) and anaerobic metabolism (concentrations of the anaerobic metabolite tauropine and the energy-storage molecule phosphocreatine) of C. moorei. None of these components was significantly different between burrowing and resting worms, and the low increases in oxygen consumption rates or tauropine concentrations predicted from external work calculations were within the variability observed across individuals. This result suggests that the energy to burrow, which could come from aerobic or anaerobic sources, is not a substantial component of the total metabolic energy of a worm. Burrowing incurs a low cost per unit of time. PMID:21653814

  16. IMPACT OF BURROWING SHRIMP POPULATIONS ON C, N CYCLING AND WATER QUALITY IN WESTERN NORTH AMERICAN TEMPERATE ESTUARIES

    EPA Science Inventory

    Thalassinid burrowing shrimp (predominantly, Neotrypaea californiensis and Upogebia pugettensis) inhabit large expanses of tide flats in North American Pacific estuaries, from British Columbia to Baja California. Feeding, burrowing, and burrow irrigation by burrowing shrimp can ...

  17. IMPACT OF BURROWING SHRIMP POPULATIONS ON NITROGEN CYCLING AND WATER QUALITY IN WESTERN NORTH AMERICAN TEMPERATE ESTUARIES

    EPA Science Inventory

    Thalassinid burrowing shrimp (predominantly, Neotrypaea californiensis and Upogebia pugettensis) inhabit large expanses of tide flats in North American Pacific estuaries, from British Columbia to Baja California. Feeding, burrowing, and burrow irrigation by burrowing shrimp can ...

  18. Transient-state mechanisms of wind-induced burrow ventilation.

    PubMed

    Turner, J Scott; Pinshow, Berry

    2015-01-15

    Burrows are common animal habitations, yet living in a burrow presents physiological challenges for its inhabitants because the burrow isolates them from sources and sinks for oxygen, carbon dioxide, water vapor and ammonia. Conventionally, the isolation is thought to be overcome by either diffusion gas exchange within the burrow or some means of capturing wind energy to power steady or quasi-steady bulk flows of air through it. Both are examples of what may be called 'DC' models, namely steady to quasi-steady flows powered by steady to quasi-steady winds. Natural winds, however, are neither steady nor quasi-steady, but are turbulent, with a considerable portion of the energy contained in so-called 'AC' (i.e. unsteady) components, where wind velocity varies chaotically and energy to power gas exchange is stored in some form. Existing DC models of burrow gas exchange do not account for this potentially significant source of energy for ventilation. We present evidence that at least two AC mechanisms operate to ventilate both single-opening burrows (of the Cape skink, Trachylepis capensis) and double-opening model burrows (of Sundevall's jird, Meriones crassus). We propose that consideration of the physiological ecology and evolution of the burrowing habit has been blinkered by the long neglect of AC ventilation. PMID:25609780

  19. Burrow-generated false facies and phantom sequences

    SciTech Connect

    Wanless, H.R.; Tagett, M.

    1986-05-01

    Callianassa (=Ophiomorpha) and other burrowers deeply rework shallow marine sequences. Through in-situ reworking, they create false sedimentary facies and stratigraphic sequences. Callianassa's key to effectiveness is that it expels sand and mud from burrow excavations but concentrates coarse material at the base of the burrow complex. Coarse material can be derived by falling into the burrow entrance, by reworking the existing sediment sequence, or by a combination of both. Examples come from shallow marine carbonate environments of south Florida and the Turks and Caicos Islands, British West Indies. Many mudbanks in south Florida are formed as stacks of layered mudstone units 20-100 cm thick. Between events, seagrasses may recolonize, and a burrowing benthic community may repopulate the substrate. The layered mudstone beneath older areas of mudbank flats can gradually be converted to a bioturbated skeletal wackestone by the deep burrowing community. Burrowing also causes mixing of faunal assemblages. On Caicos Bank, an extensive carbonate tidal flat (3-4 m thick) is slowly being transgressed. About 1 m of tidal-flat sequence is eroded at the shoreline. The remaining 2-3 m could be preserved as part of the transgressive sequence. Callianassa burrowing, however, quickly reworks the sequence, replacing tidal-flat sands and muds with marine peloidal and skeletal sediment. Within 100 m of the shoreline, the only evidence of the tidal-flat sequence is a concentration of high-spired gastropods in Calliannassa burrows at the base of the Holocene sequence and a few patches of tidal-flat sediment that burrowers missed. What looks like a basal transgressive lag is in fact a biogenic concentrate from in-situ reworking of a now phantom sequence.

  20. Burrowing in rodents: a sensitive method for detecting behavioral dysfunction.

    PubMed

    Deacon, Robert M J

    2006-01-01

    Virtually all rodents display burrowing behavior, yet measurement of this behavior has not yet been standardized or formalized. Previously, parameters such as the latency to burrow and the complexity of the burrow systems in substrate-filled boxes in the laboratory or naturalistic outdoor environments have been assessed. We describe here a simple protocol that can quantitatively measure burrowing in laboratory rodents, using a simple apparatus that can be placed in the home cage. The test is very cheap to run and requires minimal experimenter training, yet seems sensitive to a variety of treatments, such as the early stages of prion disease in mice, mouse strain differences, lesions of the hippocampus and prefrontal cortex in mice, also effects of lipopolysaccharide and IL-1beta in rats. Other species such as hamsters, gerbils and Egyptian spiny mice also burrow in this apparatus, and with suitable size modification probably almost any burrowing animal could be tested in it. The simplicity, sensitivity and robustness of burrowing make it ideal for assessing genetically modified animals, which in most cases would be mice. The test is run from late afternoon until the next morning, but only two measurements need to be taken. PMID:17406222

  1. Detecting Burrowing Owl Bloodmeals in Pulex irritans (Siphonaptera: Pulicidae).

    PubMed

    Graham, Christine B; Eisen, Rebecca J; Belthoff, James R

    2016-03-01

    Pulex irritans L. is a cosmopolitan flea species that infests a wide variety of hosts. In North America it generally parasitizes large wild mammals, but in the Pacific Northwest an association has emerged between P. irritans and the western burrowing owl (Athene cunicularia hypugaea). While investigators have recognized this association for decades, it has not been clear if P. irritans feeds on burrowing owls, or if the owls serve exclusively as phoretic hosts. Here we describe using a real-time assay that was originally developed to identify bloodmeals in Ugandan cat fleas (Ctenocephalides felis Bouché) to detect burrowing owl DNA in P. irritans collected from burrowing owls in southern Idaho. Of 50 fleas tested, 12 had no detectable vertebrate bloodmeal. The remaining 38 (76%) contained burrowing owl DNA. The assay did not detect vertebrate DNA in unfed fleas exposed to owl or mouse pelts and is therefore unlikely to detect DNA in fleas from vertebrates that have served exclusively as phoretic hosts. We conclude that P. irritans feeds on burrowing owls. We discuss the potential implications of this finding for burrowing owl conservation and enzootic plague dynamics. PMID:26545716

  2. Employee recruitment.

    PubMed

    Breaugh, James A

    2013-01-01

    The way an organization recruits can influence the type of employees it hires, how they perform, and their retention rate. This article provides a selective review of research that has addressed recruitment targeting, recruitment methods, the recruitment message, recruiters, the organizational site visit, the job offer, and the timing of recruitment actions. These and other topics (e.g., the job applicant's perspective) are discussed in terms of their potential influence on prehire (e.g., the quality of job applicants) and posthire (e.g., new employee retention) recruitment outcomes. In reviewing research, attention is given to the current state of scientific knowledge, limitations of previous research, and important issues meriting future investigation. PMID:23121331

  3. Burrowing Criteria and Burrowing Mode Adjustment in Bivalves to Varying Geoenvironmental Conditions in Intertidal Flats and Beaches

    PubMed Central

    Sassa, Shinji; Watabe, Yoichi; Yang, Soonbo; Kuwae, Tomohiro

    2011-01-01

    The response of bivalves to their abiotic environment has been widely studied in relation to hydroenvironmental conditions, sediment types and sediment grain sizes. However, the possible role of varying geoenvironmental conditions in their habitats remains poorly understood. Here, we show that the hardness of the surficial intertidal sediments varies by a factor of 20–50 due to suction development and suction-induced void state changes in the essentially saturated states of intertidal flats and beaches. We investigated the response of two species of bivalves, Ruditapes philippinarum and Donax semigranosus, in the laboratory by simulating such prevailing geoenvironmental conditions in the field. The experimental results demonstrate that the bivalve responses depended strongly on the varying geoenvironmental conditions. Notably, both bivalves consistently shifted their burrowing modes, reducing the burrowing angle and burial depth, in response to increasing hardness, to compensate for the excessive energy required for burrowing, as explained by a proposed conceptual model. This burrowing mode adjustment was accompanied by two burrowing criteria below or above which the bivalves accomplished vertical burrowing or failed to burrow, respectively. The suitable and fatal conditions differed markedly with species and shell lengths. The acute sensitivities of the observed bivalve responses to geoenvironmental changes revealed two distinctive mechanisms accounting for the adult–juvenile spatial distributions of Ruditapes philippinarum and the behavioral adaptation to a rapidly changing geoenvironment of Donax semigranosus. The present results may provide a rational basis by which to understand the ensuing, and to predict future, bivalve responses to geoenvironmental changes in intertidal zones. PMID:21957474

  4. MAPPING BURROWING SHRIMP AND SEAGRASS IN YAQUINA ESTUARY

    EPA Science Inventory

    Burrowing shrimp and seagrasses create extensive intertidal and shallow subtidal habitats within Pacific NW estuaries. Maps of their populations are useful to inform estuarine managers of locations that deserve special consideration for conservation, and to inform oyster farmers...

  5. GENETIC CHARACTERIZATION OF A BURROWING SHRIMP (NEOTRYPAEA CALIFORNIENSIS)

    EPA Science Inventory

    Ghost shrimp, (Neotypaea californiensis) are burrowers, whose bioturbation and sediment destabilizations have a negative effect on mariculture of the commercially important oyster (Crassostrea gigas). Oyster farmers in Washington and Oregon estuaries have been poisoning these shr...

  6. SPATIAL DISTRIBUTIONS OF BURROWING SHRIMP POPULATIONS IN TWO OREGON ESTUARIES

    EPA Science Inventory

    Thalassinid burrowing shrimp (Neotrypaea californiensis and Upogebia pugettensis) inhabit large expanses of Pacific estuarine tide flats, from British Columbia to Baja California. The spatial distribution of shrimp populations within estuaries has rarely been quantified because ...

  7. Burrowing in marine muds by crack propagation: kinematics and forces.

    PubMed

    Dorgan, Kelly M; Arwade, Sanjay R; Jumars, Peter A

    2007-12-01

    The polychaete Nereis virens burrows through muddy sediments by exerting dorsoventral forces against the walls of its tongue-depressor-shaped burrow to extend an oblate hemispheroidal crack. Stress is concentrated at the crack tip, which extends when the stress intensity factor (KI) exceeds the critical stress intensity factor (KIc). Relevant forces were measured in gelatin, an analog for elastic muds, by photoelastic stress analysis, and were 0.015+/-0.001 N (mean +/- s.d.; N=5). Measured elastic moduli (E) for gelatin and sediment were used in finite element models to convert the forces in gelatin to those required in muds to maintain the same body shapes observed in gelatin. The force increases directly with increasing sediment stiffness, and is 0.16 N for measured sediment stiffness of E=2.7 x 10(4) Pa. This measurement of forces exerted by burrowers is the first that explicitly considers the mechanical behavior of the sediment. Calculated stress intensity factors fall within the range of critical values for gelatin and exceed those for sediment, showing that crack propagation is a mechanically feasible mechanism of burrowing. The pharynx extends anteriorly as it everts, extending the crack tip only as far as the anterior of the worm, consistent with wedge-driven fracture and drawing obvious parallels between soft-bodied burrowers and more rigid, wedge-shaped burrowers (i.e. clams). Our results raise questions about the reputed high energetic cost of burrowing and emphasize the need for better understanding of sediment mechanics to quantify external energy expenditure during burrowing. PMID:18025018

  8. Function of Hexagenia (Mayfly) Burrows: Fluid Model Suggests Bacterial Gardening

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Traynham, B.; Furbish, D.; Miller, M.; White, D.

    2006-12-01

    Lake and stream bottoms experience an array of physical, chemical, and biological processes that create spatial variations both in the fluid column and in the sediment that provide a physical template for distinct niches. Burrowing insects are major ecological engineers of communities where they structure large areas of the benthic habitat through bioturbation and other activities including respiration, feeding, and defecation. The burrowing mayfly Hexagenia, when present in high densities, has a large impact on food-web dynamics and provides essential ecosystem services within the fluid column and benthic substrate, including sediment mixing, nutrient cycling, and ultimately, energy flow through the freshwater food web. It has long been recognized that particular benthic species are important in linking detrital energy resources to higher trophic levels and for determining how organic matter is processed in freshwater ecosystems; however, the unique contributions made by individual benthic species is largely absent from the literature. Here we present a model that describes the structure and function of a Hexagenia burrow. If testing supports this hypothesis, the model suggests that when high food concentration is available to Hexagenia, there exists a favorable tube length for harvesting bacteria that grow on the burrow walls. The burrow microhabitat created by Hexagenia serves as a case-study in understanding the influence of benthic burrowers on both energy flow through freshwater food webs and nutrient cycling.

  9. Baited lines: An active nondestructive collection method for burrowing crayfish

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Loughman, Zachary J.; Foltz, David A., II; Welsh, Stuart

    2013-01-01

    A new method (baited lines) is described for the collection of burrowing crayfishes, where fishing hooks baited with earthworms and tied to monofilament leaders are used to lure crayfishes from their burrow entrances. We estimated capture rates using baited lines at four locations across West Virginia for a total of four crayfish taxa; the taxa studied were orange, blue, and blue/orange morphs of Cambarus dubius (Upland Burrowing Catfish), and C. thomai (Little Brown Mudbug). Baited-line capture rates were lowest for C. thomai (81%; n = 21 attempts) and highest for the orange morph ofC. dubius (99%; n = 13 attempts). The pooled capture rate across all taxa was 91.5% (n = 50 attempts). Baited lines represent an environmentally nondestructive method to capture burrowing crayfishes without harm to individuals, and without disturbing burrows or the surrounding area. This novel method allows for repeat captures and long-term studies, providing a useful sampling method for ecological studies of burrowing crayfishes.

  10. Vestibular recruitment

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Tsemakhov, S. G.

    1980-01-01

    Vestibular recruitment is defined through the analysis of several references. It is concluded that vestibular recruitment is an objective phenomenon which manifests itself during the affection of the vestibular receptor and thus serves as a diagnostic tool during affection of the vestibular system.

  11. Resident recruitment.

    PubMed

    Longmaid, H Esterbrook

    2003-02-01

    This article has introduced the reader to the critical components of successful recruitment of radiology residents. With particular attention to the ACGME institutional and program requirements regarding resident recruitment, and an explanation of the support systems (ERAS and NRMP) currently available to those involved in applicant review and selection, the article has sought to delineate a sensible approach to recruitment. Successful recruiters have mastered the essentials of these programs and have learned to adapt the programs to their needs. As new program directors work with their departments' resident selection committees, they will identify the factors that faculty and current residents cite as most important in the successful selection of new residents. By structuring the application review process, exploiting the power of the ERAS, and crafting a purposeful and friendly interview process, radiology residency directors can find and recruit the residents who best match their programs. PMID:12585436

  12. Use of Artificial Burrows by Burrowing Owls (Athene cunicularia) at the HAMMER Facility on the U.S. Department of Energy Hanford Site

    SciTech Connect

    Alexander, Amanda K.; Sackschewsky, Michael R.; Duberstein, Corey A.

    2005-09-30

    In 2003 the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) constructed an Emergency Vehicle Operations Course (EVOC) at the Hazardous Material Management and Emergency Response Training and Education Center (HAMMER) in the southern portion of the Hanford Site. Preliminary surveys during 2001 identified an active burrowing owl (Athene cunicularia) burrow and three burrowing owls within the proposed development area. Burrowing owls were classified as a federal species of concern, a Washington State ?candidate? species, a Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife priority species, and a Hanford Site Biological Resources Management Plan Level III resource. Therefore, the mitigation action plan for the project included the installation of twenty artificial burrows around EVOC in the spring of 2003. The mitigation plan established a success criterion of five percent annual use of the burrows by owls. In July 2005, a field survey of the EVOC burrow complex was conducted to determine use and demography at each site. Burrow locations were mapped and signs of activity (feces, owl tracks, castings, feathers) were recorded. Out of the twenty burrows, twelve were found to be active. Of the eight inactive burrows three appeared to have been active earlier in the 2005 breeding season. A total of nineteen owls were counted but demography could not be determined. It appears that the EVOC mitigation exceeded burrow use goals during 2005. Continued site monitoring and maintenance, according to mitigation plan guidelines should be conducted as prescribed.

  13. Mechanics and kinematics of backward burrowing by the polychaete Cirriformia moorei.

    PubMed

    Che, James; Dorgan, Kelly M

    2010-12-15

    The polychaete Cirriformia moorei burrows in muddy sediments by fracture, using its hydrostatic skeleton to expand its anterior region and exert force against its burrow wall to extend a crack. Burrowing occurs in four phases: stretching forward into the burrow, extending the crack anteriorly, thickening the burrowing end to amplify stress at the tip of the crack, and bringing the rest of the body forward as a peristaltic wave travels posteriorly. Here, we show that C. moorei is also able to burrow with its posterior end using a similar mechanism of crack propagation and exhibiting the same four phases of burrowing. Worms burrowed backwards with similar speeds and stress intensity factors as forward burrowing, but were thinner and less blunt and did not slip as far away from the crack tip between cycles of burrowing. The anterior end is more muscular and rigid, and differences in body shapes are consistent with having reduce musculature to dilate the posterior segments while burrowing. Backward burrowing provides a unique opportunity to study the effects of morphology on burrowing mechanics within the same species under identical conditions. PMID:21113009

  14. Collection of mammal manure and other Debris by nesting Burrowing Owls

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Smith, M.D.; Conway, C.J.

    2011-01-01

    Burrowing Owls (Athene cunicularia) routinely collect and scatter dry manure of mammals around their nesting burrows. Recent studies have suggested this behavior attracts insect prey to the nesting burrow. However, some Burrowing Owls do not use manure, but instead, collect and scatter other materials (e.g., grass, moss, paper, plastic) around their nesting burrow in a similar fashion. Use of these materials seemingly contradicts the prey-attraction hypothesis. Using observational and experimental methods, we tested whether Burrowing Owls preferred manure to other materials commonly found at nesting burrows in eastern Washington. We found a wide variety of materials at nests, but grass and manure were the most common materials. The amount of manure present at nests was negatively correlated with the amount of other materials, and with the distance to the nearest source of manure. Burrowing Owls showed no preference between horse manure and grass divots at experimental supply stations that we placed near nesting burrows. They did prefer these two materials to carpet pieces and aluminum foil (both materials that are often found at Burrowing Owl nests). Our results did not support the premise that Burrowing Owls specifically seek out manure when lining their nesting burrows. The unusual behavior of collecting and scattering mammal manure and other debris at Burrowing Owl nests may serve functions other than (or in addition to) prey attraction and alternative hypotheses need further testing before the function of this behavior is certain. ?? 2011 The Raptor Research Foundation, Inc.

  15. Factors influencing nesting success of burrowing owls in southeastern Idaho

    SciTech Connect

    Gleason, R.S.; Johnson, D.R.

    1985-01-31

    A burrowing owl (Athene cunicularia) population nesting on the Idaho National Engineering Laboratory (INEL) in southeastern Idaho utilized burrows excavated by badgers (Taxidea taxus) or natural cavities in lava flows as nesting sites. The size of the population was small (N = 13-14 pairs) in relation to the number of available nesting sites, suggesting that factors other than burrow availability limited this population. Rodents and Jerusalem crickets (Stenopelmatus fuscus) represented the primary prey utilized during the nesting season. This population demonstrated both a numerical (brood size) and functional (dietary) response to a decrease in the density of three species of rodents on the INEL during a drought in 1977. 11 references, 1 figure, 2 table.

  16. Infaunal Burrows Are Enrichment Zones for Vibrio parahaemolyticus▿†

    PubMed Central

    Gamble, Megan D.; Lovell, Charles R.

    2011-01-01

    Vibrio parahaemolyticus, a species that includes strains known to be pathogenic in humans, and other Vibrionaceae are common, naturally occurring bacteria in coastal environments. Understanding the ecology and transport of these organisms within estuarine systems is fundamental to predicting outbreaks of pathogenic strains. Infaunal burrows serve as conduits for increased transport of tidal waters and V. parahaemolyticus cells by providing large open channels from the sediment to salt marsh tidal creeks. An extensive seasonal study was conducted at the North Inlet Estuary in Georgetown, SC, to quantify Vibrionaceae and specifically V. parahaemolyticus bacteria in tidal water, fiddler crab (Uca pugilator, Uca pugnax) burrow water, and interstitial pore water. Numbers of V. parahaemolyticus bacteria were significantly higher within burrow waters (4,875 CFU ml−1) than in creek water (193 CFU ml−1) and interstitial pore water (128 CFU ml−1), demonstrating that infaunal burrows are sites of V. parahaemolyticus enrichment. A strong seasonal trend of increased abundances of Vibrionaceae and V. parahaemolyticus organisms during the warmer months of May through September was observed. Multilocus sequence typing (MLST) analysis of isolates presumed to be V. parahaemolyticus from creek water, pore water, and burrow water identified substantial strain-level genetic variability among V. parahaemolyticus bacteria. Analysis of carbon substrate utilization capabilities of organisms presumed to be V. parahaemolyticus also indicated physiological diversity within this clade, which helps to explain the broad distribution of these strains within the estuary. These burrows are “hot spots” of Vibrionaceae and V. parahaemolyticus cell numbers and strain diversity and represent an important microhabitat. PMID:21478307

  17. Infaunal burrows are enrichment zones for Vibrio parahaemolyticus.

    PubMed

    Gamble, Megan D; Lovell, Charles R

    2011-06-01

    Vibrio parahaemolyticus, a species that includes strains known to be pathogenic in humans, and other Vibrionaceae are common, naturally occurring bacteria in coastal environments. Understanding the ecology and transport of these organisms within estuarine systems is fundamental to predicting outbreaks of pathogenic strains. Infaunal burrows serve as conduits for increased transport of tidal waters and V. parahaemolyticus cells by providing large open channels from the sediment to salt marsh tidal creeks. An extensive seasonal study was conducted at the North Inlet Estuary in Georgetown, SC, to quantify Vibrionaceae and specifically V. parahaemolyticus bacteria in tidal water, fiddler crab (Uca pugilator, Uca pugnax) burrow water, and interstitial pore water. Numbers of V. parahaemolyticus bacteria were significantly higher within burrow waters (4,875 CFU ml(-1)) than in creek water (193 CFU ml(-1)) and interstitial pore water (128 CFU ml(-1)), demonstrating that infaunal burrows are sites of V. parahaemolyticus enrichment. A strong seasonal trend of increased abundances of Vibrionaceae and V. parahaemolyticus organisms during the warmer months of May through September was observed. Multilocus sequence typing (MLST) analysis of isolates presumed to be V. parahaemolyticus from creek water, pore water, and burrow water identified substantial strain-level genetic variability among V. parahaemolyticus bacteria. Analysis of carbon substrate utilization capabilities of organisms presumed to be V. parahaemolyticus also indicated physiological diversity within this clade, which helps to explain the broad distribution of these strains within the estuary. These burrows are "hot spots" of Vibrionaceae and V. parahaemolyticus cell numbers and strain diversity and represent an important microhabitat. PMID:21478307

  18. Novel use of burrow casting as a research tool in deep-sea ecology.

    PubMed

    Seike, Koji; Jenkins, Robert G; Watanabe, Hiromi; Nomaki, Hidetaka; Sato, Kei

    2012-08-23

    Although the deep sea is the largest ecosystem on Earth, its infaunal ecology remains poorly understood because of the logistical challenges. Here we report the morphology of relatively large burrows obtained by in situ burrow casting at a hydrocarbon-seep site and a non-seep site at water depths of 1173 and 1455 m, respectively. Deep and complex burrows are abundant at both sites, indicating that the burrows introduce oxygen-rich sea water into the deep reducing substrate, thereby influencing benthic metabolism and nutrient fluxes, and providing an oxic microhabitat for small organisms. Burrow castings reveal that the solemyid bivalve Acharax johnsoni mines sulphide from the sediment, as documented for related shallow-water species. To our knowledge, this is the first study to examine in situ burrow morphology in the deep sea by means of burrow casting, providing detailed information on burrow structure which will aid the interpretation of seabed processes in the deep sea. PMID:22298806

  19. Novel use of burrow casting as a research tool in deep-sea ecology

    PubMed Central

    Seike, Koji; Jenkins, Robert G.; Watanabe, Hiromi; Nomaki, Hidetaka; Sato, Kei

    2012-01-01

    Although the deep sea is the largest ecosystem on Earth, its infaunal ecology remains poorly understood because of the logistical challenges. Here we report the morphology of relatively large burrows obtained by in situ burrow casting at a hydrocarbon-seep site and a non-seep site at water depths of 1173 and 1455 m, respectively. Deep and complex burrows are abundant at both sites, indicating that the burrows introduce oxygen-rich sea water into the deep reducing substrate, thereby influencing benthic metabolism and nutrient fluxes, and providing an oxic microhabitat for small organisms. Burrow castings reveal that the solemyid bivalve Acharax johnsoni mines sulphide from the sediment, as documented for related shallow-water species. To our knowledge, this is the first study to examine in situ burrow morphology in the deep sea by means of burrow casting, providing detailed information on burrow structure which will aid the interpretation of seabed processes in the deep sea. PMID:22298806

  20. ENHANCED ORGANIC MATTER REMINERALIZATION AND NUTRIENT TURNOVER BY POPULATIONS OF BURROWING SHRIMP IN YAQUINA BAY, OR

    EPA Science Inventory

    Burrowing, or thalassinid, shrimp structure large areas of intertidal habitat of Pacific Northwest estuaries. This field study utilized a combination of anoxic incubations, porewater dialysis peepers, and benthic chambers to quantify the role of burrowing shrimp species on OM dec...

  1. Population structure and seasonal intra-burrow movement of Ornithodoros turicata (Acari: Argasidae) in gopher tortoise burrows.

    PubMed

    Adeyeye, O A; Butler, J F

    1989-07-01

    Burrows of the gopher tortoise, Gopherus polyphemus Daudin, were sampled for Ornithodoros turicata (Dugès) infestation using carbon dioxide baits and vacuum extraction. Ticks were captured, marked, released, and recaptured, and population estimates were made using the Lincoln index. Estimated population ranged from 47 to 1,338 ticks per burrow. The tick population consisted predominantly of nymphs, with a significant increase in the larval population during the months of June and July. Adult sex ratio was slightly male-biased, but numbers of adults collected were consistently low. Ticks exhibited a low interburrow movement, but depth preferences fluctuated with season; more ticks occurred in the upper strata of the burrows during the hot, humid months. PMID:2769706

  2. Burrowing behavior in mud and sand of morphologically divergent polychaete species (Annelida: Orbiniidae).

    PubMed

    Francoeur, Alex A; Dorgan, Kelly M

    2014-04-01

    Muddy and sandy sediments have different physical properties. Muds are cohesive elastic solids, whereas granular beach sands are non-cohesive porous media. Infaunal organisms such as worms that burrow through sediments therefore face different mechanical challenges that potentially lead to a variety of burrowing strategies and morphologies. In this study we compared three morphologically distinct polychaete species representing different clades in the family Orbiniidae and related differences in their burrowing behaviors and morphologies to their natural environments (mud or sand). Worms burrowed in transparent analogs for muds and sands, and kinematic analysis showed differences both among species and between materials. Leitoscoloplos pugettensis lives in mud and burrows by fracture, using its pointed head to concentrate stress at the tip of the burrow. Naineris dendritica lives in sand and uses its broader head that fluctuates in width over a burrowing cycle to decrease backward slipping in sand, potentially preventing burrow collapse. Orbinia johnsoni lives in sand and uses internal body expansions to pack sand grains, another mechanism to prevent burrow collapse. By combining data from species and materials to obtain a broad range of burrowing velocities, we show that burrowing worms control their velocity by increasing or decreasing their burrowing frequency rather than by altering cycle distance as shown previously for crawling earthworms. This study demonstrates how fairly small evolutionary divergences in morphologies and behaviors facilitate locomotion in environments with different physical constraints. PMID:24797095

  3. Partitioning of habitable pore space in earthworm burrows.

    PubMed

    Gorres, Josef H; Amador, Jose A

    2010-03-01

    Earthworms affect macro-pore structure of soils. However, some studies suggest that earthworm burrow walls and casts themselves differ greatly in structure from surrounding soils, potentially creating habitat for microbivorours nematodes which accelerate the decomposition and C and N mineralization. In this study aggregates were sampled from the burrow walls of the anecic earthworm Lumbricus terrestris and bulk soil (not altered by earthworms) from mesocosm incubated in the lab for 0, 1, 3, 5 and 16 weeks. Pore volumes and pore sizes were measured in triplicate with Mercury Intrusion Porosimetry (MIP). This method is well suited to establish pore size structure in the context of habitat, because it measures the stepwise intrusion of mercury from the outside of the aggregate into ever smaller pores. The progress of mercury into the aggregate interior thus resembles potential paths of a nematode into accessible habitable pore spaces residing in an aggregate. Total specific pore volume, V(s), varied between 0.13 and 0.18 mL/g and increased from 3 to 16 weeks in both burrow and bulk soil. Differences between total V(s) of bulk and burrow samples were not significant on any sampling date. However, differences were significant for pore size fractions at the scale of nematode body diameter. PMID:22736839

  4. Microstructural view of burrowing with a bioinspired digging robot

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nordstrom, K. N.; Dorsch, D. S.; Losert, W.; Winter, A. G.

    2015-10-01

    RoboClam is a burrowing technology inspired by Ensis directus, the Atlantic razor clam. Atlantic razor clams should only be strong enough to dig a few centimeters into the soil, yet they burrow to over 70 cm. The animal uses a clever trick to achieve this: by contracting its body, it agitates and locally fluidizes the soil, reducing the drag and energetic cost of burrowing. RoboClam technology, which is based on the digging mechanics of razor clams, may be valuable for subsea applications that could benefit from efficient burrowing, such as anchoring, mine detonation, and cable laying. We directly visualize the movement of soil grains during the contraction of RoboClam, using a novel index-matching technique along with particle tracking. We show that the size of the failure zone around contracting RoboClam can be theoretically predicted from the substrate and pore fluid properties, provided that the timescale of contraction is sufficiently large. We also show that the nonaffine motions of the grains are a small fraction of the motion within the fluidized zone, affirming the relevance of a continuum model for this system, even though the grain size is comparable to the size of RoboClam.

  5. Microstructural view of burrowing with a bioinspired digging robot

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nordstrom, Kerstin; Dorsch, Dan; Losert, Wolfgang; Winter, V., Amos

    RoboClam is a burrowing technology inspired by Ensis directus, the Atlantic razor clam. Atlantic razor clams should only be strong enough to dig a few centimeters into the soil, yet they burrow to over 70 cm. The animal uses a clever trick to achieve this: by contracting its body, it agitates and locally fluidizes the soil, reducing the drag and energetic cost of burrowing. RoboClam technology, which is based on the digging mechanics of razor clams, may be valuable for subsea applications that could benefit from efficient burrowing, such as anchoring, mine detonation, and cable laying. We directly visualize the movement of soil grains during the contraction of RoboClam, using a novel index-matching technique along with particle tracking. We show that the size of the failure zone around contracting RoboClam can be theoretically predicted from the substrate and pore fluid properties, provided that the timescale of contraction is sufficiently large. We also show that the nonaffine motions of the grains are a small fraction of the motion within the fluidized zone, affirming the relevance of a continuum model for this system, even though the grain size is comparable to the size of RoboClam.

  6. A sand layer deters burrowing by Lumbricus terrestris L.

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The effectiveness of septic system filter fields can be reduced by preferential flow through soil macropores. Burrows of anecic earthworms may contribute to this concern by penetrating the infiltrative surface of soil-wastewater-treatment-system trenches. Adding a layer of sand on the bottom of th...

  7. Burrowing shrimp as foundation species in NE Pacific estuaries

    EPA Science Inventory

    My talk will be about the my research to characterize the role that burrowing shrimp play as foundation/engineering species in Pacific NW estuaries. My research has focused on measuring the abundance & distribution of two species (ghost shrimp & mud shrimp) at ecosystem scales, ...

  8. Microstructural view of burrowing with a bioinspired digging robot.

    PubMed

    Nordstrom, K N; Dorsch, D S; Losert, W; Winter, A G

    2015-10-01

    RoboClam is a burrowing technology inspired by Ensis directus, the Atlantic razor clam. Atlantic razor clams should only be strong enough to dig a few centimeters into the soil, yet they burrow to over 70 cm. The animal uses a clever trick to achieve this: by contracting its body, it agitates and locally fluidizes the soil, reducing the drag and energetic cost of burrowing. RoboClam technology, which is based on the digging mechanics of razor clams, may be valuable for subsea applications that could benefit from efficient burrowing, such as anchoring, mine detonation, and cable laying. We directly visualize the movement of soil grains during the contraction of RoboClam, using a novel index-matching technique along with particle tracking. We show that the size of the failure zone around contracting RoboClam can be theoretically predicted from the substrate and pore fluid properties, provided that the timescale of contraction is sufficiently large. We also show that the nonaffine motions of the grains are a small fraction of the motion within the fluidized zone, affirming the relevance of a continuum model for this system, even though the grain size is comparable to the size of RoboClam. PMID:26565232

  9. Surface destabilisation by the invasive burrowing engineer Mus musculus on a sub-Antarctic island

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Eriksson, Bert; Eldridge, David J.

    2014-10-01

    Invasive species are known to have substantial trophic effects on ecosystems and ecosystem processes. The invasion of the house mouse (Mus musculus) onto sub-Antarctic islands has had a devastating effect on plants, invertebrates, and birds with substantial changes in ecosystem functions. Less well understood, however, are the nontrophic, geomorphic effects of mice resulting from their burrowing activities. We examined the extent of burrow construction by M. musculus across an area of about 20 ha on Marion Island and the effects of burrows on water flow and sediment movement. We recorded a density of 0.59 ± 0.48 (mean ± SD) burrows m- 2, with more burrows at lower altitudes and shallower slopes, and twice the density in the solifluction risers (0.86 ± 0.54 m- 2) than the intervening terraces or treads (0.40 ± 0.51 m- 2). Most burrows were dug horizontally into the slope and tended to extend about 20 cm deep before turning. A very conservative estimate of sediment removed from burrows from this depth is 2.4 t ha- 1. However, taking into account more detailed data on burrow morphology based on excavations, actual amounts may be closer to 8.4 t ha- 1. Average soil displacement rate for a single burrow, measured over 5 days, was 0.18 kg burrow- 1 day- 1. Burrows acted as conduits for water and warmer air. Stones at burrow entrances were moved eight times farther by water (10.4 cm) than those not associated with burrows. Similarly, temperatures adjacent to burrow entrances were 4.1 °C higher than sites 10 cm away. Together our data indicate that mice are having substantial deleterious and geomorphic effects on sub-Antarctic ecosystems through their burrowing. With lower rates of mouse mortality resulting from warmer climates predicted under global climate models, we can expect an increase in damage resulting from mouse activity.

  10. Shrimp burrow in tropical seagrass meadows: An important sink for litter

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vonk, Jan Arie; Kneer, Dominik; Stapel, Johan; Asmus, Harald

    2008-08-01

    The abundance, burrow characteristics, and in situ behaviour of the burrowing shrimps Neaxius acanthus (Decapoda: Strahlaxiidae) and Alpheus macellarius (Decapoda: Alpheidae) were studied to quantify the collection of seagrass material, to identify the fate of this collected material, and to determine the importance of these burrowing crustaceans in the nutrient (nitrogen and phosphorus) cycling of two tropical seagrass meadows on Bone Batang, South Sulawesi, Indonesia. Alpheus macellarius harvested 0.70 g dry weight (DW) burrow -1 d -1 seagrass material, dominantly by active cutting of fresh seagrass leaves. Neaxius acanthus collected 1.66 g DW burrow -1 d -1, mainly detached leaves which floated past the burrow opening. The A. macellarius and N. acanthus communities together collected in their burrows an amount of seagrass leaf material corresponding to more than 50% of the leaf production in the meadows studied. The crustacean species studied might therefore fulfil an important function in the nutrient cycling of tropical meadows. In the burrow most of the collected material is shredded into pieces. The burrows of both species had special chambers which serve as a storage for seagrass leaf material. Neaxius acanthus incorporated most of the material into the burrow wall lining, which is made of small sediment particles and macerated seagrass leaves. Phosphate concentrations measured in N. acanthus burrows compared with pore-water and water-column concentrations suggests that a substantial amount of the seagrass material undergoes decomposition in the burrows. Oxygen levels measured in these water bodies are indicative for a possible exchange of water between the burrow and its surroundings, most likely supported by the shrimps irrigating their burrows. By collecting leaf material in their burrows, nutrients that are otherwise lost from the seagrass meadow associated with detached leaves and leaf fragments carried away in the water column, are maintained in the

  11. Advection around ventilated U-shaped burrows: A model study

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Brand, Andreas; Lewandowski, JöRg; Hamann, Enrico; Nützmann, Gunnar

    2013-05-01

    Advective transport in the porous matrix of sediments surrounding burrows formed by fauna such as Chironomus plumosus has been generally neglected. A positron emission tomography study recently revealed that the pumping activity of the midge larvae can indeed induce fluid flow in the sediment. We present a numerical model study which explores the conditions at which advective transport in the sediment becomes relevant. A 0.15 m deep U-shaped burrow with a diameter of 0.002 m within the sediment was represented in a 3-D domain. Fluid flow in the burrow was calculated using the Navier-Stokes equation for incompressible laminar flow in the burrow, and flow in the sediment was described by Darcy's law. Nonreactive and reactive transport scenarios were simulated considering diffusion and advection. The pumping activity of the model larva results in considerable advective flow in the sediment at reasonable high permeabilities with flow velocities of up to 7.0 × 10-6 m s-1 close to the larva for a permeability of 3 × 10-12 m2. At permeabilities below 7 × 10-13 m2 advection is negligible compared to diffusion. Reactive transport simulations using first-order kinetics for oxygen revealed that advective flux into the sediment downstream of the pumping larva enhances sedimentary uptake, while the advective flux into the burrow upstream of the larvae inhibits diffusive sedimentary uptake. Despite the fact that both effects cancel each other with respect to total solute uptake, the advection-induced asymmetry in concentration distribution can lead to a heterogeneous solute and redox distribution in the sediment relevant to complex reaction networks.

  12. Crab Burrows are Important Conduits for Groundwater Recharge in Bangladesh

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stahl, M.; Tarek, M. H.; Yeo, D. C.; Badruzzaman, A.; Harvey, C. F.

    2013-12-01

    Recent research suggests that recharge from man-made ponds may stimulate arsenic mobilization within Bangladeshi aquifers. Man-made ponds are widespread throughout Bangladesh and are generally underlain by low permeability clays that could potentially limit flow to the sandy aquifer below if they are not compromised by preferential flow paths. Animal borrows are one common type of preferential flow path through surface clays. Across the Ganges Delta, terrestrial crabs dig borrows, sometimes as long as 10 meters. In our study pond in Munshiganj, Bangladesh we found crab burrows extending through the surficial clays and down into the shallow aquifer spaced approximately every meter. We use these field observations along with a novel, coupled isotope and water balance model to quantify the fluxes into and out of the pond. We show that nearly all of the aquifer recharge from the pond is through crab burrows which have enhanced the hydraulic conductivity of the surficial sediments by several orders of magnitude. In addition we show that the recharging pond water is shifting the solute composition of water beneath the pond. We suggest that, as a result of crab burrows, young ponds may contribute large fluxes of recharge water whereas older ponds may contribute little recharge to the aquifer. All terrestrial crabs have gills that must remain moist to allow for respiration. So, to ensure an uninterrupted water source, their borrows must reach the maximum depth that the water table drops to seasonally after irrigation ceases and before the onset of the monsoon. Once a pond is installed crabs living within the sediments that now make up the new pond bottom would no longer need to construct burrows to ensure a constant supply of water. Over time, burrows that existed prior to pond construction can clog. Water balance data for an old pond at our study site indicates that this pond contributes less recharge than our newly constructed pond.

  13. Factors affecting detection of burrowing owl nests during standardized surveys

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Conway, C.J.; Garcia, V.; Smith, M.D.; Hughes, K.

    2008-01-01

    Identifying causes of declines and evaluating effects of management practices on persistence of local populations of burrowing owls (Athene cunicularia) requires accurate estimates of abundance and population trends. Moreover, regulatory agencies in the United States and Canada typically require surveys to detect nest burrows prior to approving developments or other activities in areas that are potentially suitable for nesting burrowing owls. In general, guidelines on timing of surveys have been lacking and surveys have been conducted at different times of day and in different stages of the nesting cycle. We used logistic regression to evaluate 7 factors that could potentially affect probability of a surveyor detecting a burrowing owl nest. We conducted 1,444 detection trials at 323 burrowing owl nests within 3 study areas in Washington and Wyoming, USA, between February and August 2000-2002. Detection probability was highest during the nestling period and increased with ambient temperature. The other 5 factors that we examined (i.e., study area, time of day, timing within the breeding season, wind speed, % cloud cover) interacted with another factor to influence detection probability. Use of call-broadcast surveys increased detection probability, even during daylight hours when we detected >95% of owls visually. Optimal timing of surveys will vary due to differences in breeding phenology and differences in nesting behavior across populations. Nevertheless, we recommend ???3 surveys per year: one that coincides with the laying and incubation period, another that coincides with the early nestling period, and a third that coincides with the late nestling period. In northern latitudes, surveys can be conducted throughout the day.

  14. Multiscale habitat selection by burrowing owls in black-tailed prairie dog colonies

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Lantz, S.J.; Conway, C.J.; Anderson, S.H.

    2007-01-01

    Some populations of western burrowing owls (Athene cunicularia hypugaea) have declined in recent decades. To design and implement effective recovery efforts, we need a better understanding of how distribution and demographic traits are influenced by habitat quality. To this end, we measured spatial patterns of burrowing owl breeding habitat selection within black-tailed prairie dog (Cynomys ludovicianus) colonies in northeastern Wyoming, USA. We compared burrow-, site-, colony-, and landscape-scale habitat parameters between burrowing owl nest burrows (n = 105) and unoccupied burrows (n = 85). We sampled 4 types of prairie dog colonies: 1) owl-occupied, active with prairie dogs (n = 16); 2) owl-occupied, inactive (n = 13); 3) owl-unoccupied, active (n = 14); and 4) owl-unoccupied, inactive (n = 14). We used an information-theoretic approach to examine a set of candidate models of burrowing owl nest-site selection. The model with the most support included variables at all 4 spatial scales, and results were consistent among the 4 types of prairie dog colonies. Nest burrows had longer tunnels, more available burrows within 30 m, and less shrub cover within 30 m, more prairie dog activity within 100 m, and were closer to water than unoccupied burrows. The model correctly classified 76% of cases, all model coefficients were stable, and the model had high predictive ability. Based on our results, we recommend actions to ensure persistence of the remaining prairie dog colonies as an important management strategy for burrowing owl conservation in the Great Plains of North America.

  15. Seasonal changes in burrow geometry of the common mole rat (Rodentia: Bathyergidae)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Thomas, H. G.; Scantlebury, M.; Swanepoel, D.; Bateman, P. W.; Bennett, N. C.

    2013-11-01

    Sociality in mole rats has been suggested to have evolved as a response to the widely dispersed food resources and the limited burrowing opportunities that result from sporadic rainfall events. In the most arid regions, individual foraging efficiency is reduced, and energetic constraints increase. In this study, we investigate seasonal differences in burrow architecture of the social Cryptomys hottentotus hottentotus in a mesic region. We describe burrow geometry in response to seasonal weather conditions for two seasons (wet and dry). Interactions occurred between seasons and colony size for the size of the burrow systems, but not the shape of the burrow systems. The fractal dimension values of the burrow systems did not differ between seasons. Thus, the burrow complexity was dependent upon the number of mole rats present in the social group.

  16. Rodent burrows in late Pleistocene paleosols at Korean Palaeolithic sites and their implications for paleoclimate changes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lim, H.; Park, S.; Lee, J.; Lee, Y.

    2013-12-01

    Rodent burrows are commonly found at many Paleolithic archaeological sites in Korea. They are nearly straight in horizontal view and gently inclined in lateral view. Burrow diameters are mostly 7 - 10cm, and burrow length may reach a few meters. Vertical penetration depths are generally about 1 m from the surface, and the thickness of the burrow-bearing layer is about 1-2 m. Although no remains (bones, teeth, claws, and coprolites) were found within burrows, they are interpreted to have been produced by rodent-like mammals (probably ground squirrels) based on the size and architecture. According to the previous study, the age of these burrows was constrained to be between ca. 40,000 and 25,000 yr BP by tephrochronology, radiocarbon and optically stimulated luminescence dating results (Lim et al., 2007). However, little is known about the reason why these burrows have disappeared after late Pleistocene time. For this question, two explanations can be considered: extinction or migration. Since same kinds of burrows are still found in the high-latitude regions, such as Mongolia and North America, the possibility of extinction can be ruled out. Therefore, migration seems to be the most likely explanation. Our results show that the destruction of habitat caused by climate change during this period is the main reason for the northward migration of burrowing animals. This study suggests that rodent burrows found in the late Pleistocene paleosols can provide useful information on paleoclimate and paleoenvironmental changes.

  17. Nest site characteristics and nesting success of the Western Burrowing Owl in the eastern Mojave Desert

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Longshore, Kathleen M.; Crowe, Dorothy E.

    2013-01-01

    We evaluated nest site selection at two spatial scales (microsite, territory) and reproductive success of Western Burrowing Owls (Athene cunicularia hypugaea) at three spatial scales (microsite, territory, landscape) in the eastern Mojave Desert. We used binary logistic regression within an information-theoretic approach to assess factors influencing nest site choice and nesting success. Microsite-scale variables favored by owls included burrows excavated by desert tortoise (Gopherus agassizii), burrows with a large mound of excavated soil at the entrance, and a greater number of satellite burrows within 5 m of the nest burrow. At the territory scale, owls preferred patches with greater cover of creosote bush (Larrea tridentata) within 50 m of the nest burrow. An interaction between the presence or absence of a calcic soil horizon layer over the top of the burrow (microsite) and the number of burrows within 50 m (territory) influenced nest site choice. Nesting success was influenced by a greater number of burrows within 5 m of the nest burrow. Total cool season precipitation was a predictor of nesting success at the landscape scale. Conservation strategies can rely on management of habitat for favored and productive nesting sites for this declining species.

  18. Water relations of the burrowing sandhill frog, Arenophryne rotunda (Myobatrachidae).

    PubMed

    Cartledge, V A; Withers, P C; Thompson, G G; McMaster, K A

    2006-05-01

    Arenophryne rotunda is a small (2-8 g) terrestrial frog that inhabits the coastal sand dunes of central Western Australia. While sand burrowing is a strategy employed by many frog species inhabiting Australia's semi-arid and arid zones, A. rotunda is unique among burrowing species because it lives independently of free water and can be found nocturnally active on the dune surface for relatively extended periods. Consequently, we examined the physiological factors that enable this unique frog to maintain water balance. A. rotunda was not found to have any special adaptation to reduce EWL (being equivalent to a free water surface) or rehydrate from water (having the lowest rehydration rate measured for 15 Western Australian frog species), but it was able to maintain water balance in sand of very low moisture (1-2%). Frogs excavated in the field were in dune sand of 4.4% moisture content, as a consequence of recent rain, which was more than adequate for these frogs to maintain water balance as reflected by their low plasma and urine osmotic concentrations. We suggest that in dry periods of the year, A. rotunda can achieve positive water balance by cutaneous water uptake by burrowing deeper into the substrate to where the percent water content is greater than 1.5%. PMID:16315052

  19. Distribution of burrowing owls in east-central South Dakota

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Shaffer, Jill A; Thiele, Jason P.

    2013-01-01

    Western burrowing owl (Athene cunicularia hypugaea) populations have declined across much of western North America, particularly at the northern and eastern edges of the species’ breeding range (Martell et al. 2001, Murphy et al. 2001, Shyry et al. 2001, Skeel et al. 2001, Klute et al. 2003). In South Dakota, the burrowing owl is a summer resident that historically was relatively common throughout the state, but its range has decreased in recent decades, especially in the eastern half of the state (Whitney et al. 1978, South Dakota Ornithologists’ Union [SDOU] 1991, Peterson 1995). Tallman et al. (2002) described the species as uncommon to locally common in western South Dakota, uncommon in the north-central part of the state, and casual (i.e., not within the species’ normal range, but with 3–10 records in the past 10 years) elsewhere in the eastern half. The burrowing owl is a Species of Greatest Conservation Need (South Dakota Department of Game, Fish and Parks [SDGFP] 2006) and a Level I Priority Species in South Dakota (Bakker 2005).

  20. Diet of western Burrowing Owls wintering in southern Texas

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Littles, C.J.; Williford, D.; Skoruppa, M.K.; Woodin, M.C.; Hickman, G.C.

    2007-01-01

    Winter diets of the western Burrowing Owl (Athene cunicularia hypugaea) are little known. We determined the diet of western Burrowing Owls wintering in southern Texas by analyzing the contents of 182 pellets collected over four winters (1999-2000, 2001-2002, 2002-2003, and 2003-2004) in three habitat types (agricultural, mainland grassland, and barrier island). Remains of a total of 7476 prey items were recovered, 98% of which were arthropods. Gryllidae (crickets) formed the largest component (50%) of the prey, followed by lepidopteran larvae (13%), beetles (8%), spiders (7%), and earwigs (6%). Although vertebrates, primarily small mammals and birds, represented only 2% of prey items by number, they represented most (71%) of the biomass. Northern pygmy mice (Baiomys taylori) and fulvous harvest mice (Reithrodontomys fulveccens) were the two most frequently consumed vertebrate species. In all habitats, arthropods, especially orthopterans, were the primary prey item by number, whereas vertebrates, primarily small mammals, were the most important by biomass. Greater consumption of arthropods by Burrowing Owls in agricultural areas may be a factor contributing to owl use of these highly altered environments. ?? 2007 The Raptor Research Foundation, Inc.

  1. Extended amplification of acoustic signals by amphibian burrows.

    PubMed

    Muñoz, Matías I; Penna, Mario

    2016-07-01

    Animals relying on acoustic signals for communication must cope with the constraints imposed by the environment for sound propagation. A resource to improve signal broadcast is the use of structures that favor the emission or the reception of sounds. We conducted playback experiments to assess the effect of the burrows occupied by the frogs Eupsophus emiliopugini and E. calcaratus on the amplitude of outgoing vocalizations. In addition, we evaluated the influence of these cavities on the reception of externally generated sounds potentially interfering with conspecific communication, namely, the vocalizations emitted by four syntopic species of anurans (E. emiliopugini, E. calcaratus, Batrachyla antartandica, and Pleurodema thaul) and the nocturnal owls Strix rufipes and Glaucidium nanum. Eupsophus advertisement calls emitted from within the burrows experienced average amplitude gains of 3-6 dB at 100 cm from the burrow openings. Likewise, the incoming vocalizations of amphibians and birds were amplified on average above 6 dB inside the cavities. The amplification of internally broadcast Eupsophus vocalizations favors signal detection by nearby conspecifics. Reciprocally, the amplification of incoming conspecific and heterospecific signals facilitates the detection of neighboring males and the monitoring of the levels of potentially interfering biotic noise by resident frogs, respectively. PMID:27209276

  2. Methods for monitoring tidal flushing in large animal burrows in tropical mangrove swamps

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hollins, Suzanne E.; Heron, Scott F.; Ridd, Peter V.

    2009-05-01

    The typically anaerobic nature of mangrove sediments provides significant challenges to the mangrove trees and biota inhabiting them. The burrowing activities and flow of water through the numerous and complex animal burrows perforating the sediments of mangroves have a major influence on the biogeochemistry of the sediments and are important to the enhancement of nutrient and oxygen exchange. Two new methods are presented for monitoring the tidal flushing of Sesarma messa and Alpheus cf macklay burrows in a Rhizophora stylosa mangrove forest - by measuring oxygen content of burrow water and by determining the change in fluorescence of a dye tracer through tidal inundation. A case study using the first of these showed oxygen consumption rates at the burrow wall deep within the burrow were found to be between 210 and 460 μmol O 2 m -2 h -1. The influx of oxygen during a flood tide was found to be significant and indicated that approximately 40% of the burrow water is flushed during a single tidal event. However, the high consumption rate of oxygen within the burrow resulted in the oxygen concentration remaining at or below one-third of the oxygen content of the flooding tidal water. A test application of the second method, using rhodamine dye as a tracer, indicated that the exchange of water between the burrow and the flooding tide was found to be in the order of 30% of the burrow volume. These new techniques provide a means to further study the nutrient exchange within these burrow systems and verify the initial findings that several tidal inundations are necessary to completely flush the burrows.

  3. Thalassinoides burrows (decapoda dwelling structures) in lower cretaceous sections of southwestern and central Crimea

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yanin, B. T.; Baraboshkin, E. Yu.

    2013-05-01

    Burrows of Thalassinoides, which are attributed to the group of dwelling structures, occur in all the marine and coastal facies. The Lower Cretaceous sections of southwestern and central Crimea yielded the representative collection of Thalassinoides burrows belonging to the ichnospecies Th. suevicus (Rieth, 1932), which served as an object for this investigation. The burrows are confined to coarse-grained terrigenous, carbonate, and mixed sediments and contain assemblages of ichnofossils indicating coastal and shallow-water marine Skolithos and Cruziana ichnofacies. In the Mesozoic-Cenozoic, the producers of the Thalassinoides burrows were decapods, confirmed by finds of crayfish Hoploparia in them.

  4. Likelihood of burrow flow in Canadian agricultural lands

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dadfar, Humaira; Allaire, Suzanne E.; van Bochove, Eric; Denault, Jean-Thomas; Thériault, Georges; Charles, Anaïs

    2010-05-01

    SummaryIndicators of risk of water contamination (IROWCs) by agricultural contaminants are developed to assess sustainability of agriculture. Burrow flow ( BF) is part of the transport hydrology algorithm used in IROWCs since it is a key pathway for sub-surface contaminant transport. The objectives of this study were to develop a methodology for predicting the likelihood of BF occurrence in agricultural soils across Canada at the landscape scale, and to determine its variation over a 25-year period (1981-2006). The BF algorithm considers the influence of climate, soil properties, and soil management on the likely frequency of BF and distribution of burrows ( B) made by Lumbricus terrestris L. Nova Scotia, Prince Edward Island, Ontario, Quebec, followed by New Brunswick, had the highest likelihood of BF due to favourable humidity, sufficient heat, medium-textured soils, and strong runoff during the growing season and spring thaw. Alberta and Saskatchewan are too dry to favour BF. Areas with high risk of BF fall within locations of high potential for lateral flow due to shallow soils, or to the presence of tile drainage, which may connect BF pathways to important water bodies such as the Great Lakes and the St-Lawrence River. Sensitivity analyses on threshold values used in the BF algorithm indicated that Manitoba is the most sensitive province to changes in precipitation, Quebec to temperature, Prince Edward Island to soil depth, and Ontario to manure application. The BF algorithm can be used as a simple tool to predict the likelihood of water and contaminant transport along earthworm burrows with data available across Canada. It will be upgraded with new data (e.g. climate change) and with an improved algorithm after statistical analyses and correlations with actual water quality data.

  5. The effect of water density variations on the tidal flushing of animal burrows

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Heron, S. F.; Ridd, P. V.

    2003-09-01

    Animal burrows in mangrove swamps play an important role in the transport of various soluble materials, including salt. Flushing of burrows by inundating tides provides an efficient mechanism for the exchange of these materials. The density increase in the burrow, due to salt diffusion from pore water into the burrow, causes a greater resistance to the flushing. As the salinity difference between surface and burrow waters increases, the burrows no longer flush, and hydrostatic equilibrium exists between the different density waters. A flume experiment was conducted to compare burrow flushing characteristics with theoretical predictions. The results were consistent with a simple analytical theory in predicting whether burrows would flush. When equilibrium was attained, the difference between the interface depths was 10% greater than the theoretical prediction, which was within the experimental error. In addition, a comparison between a two-opening and a three-opening burrow showed that there was no benefit to the flushing capability due to additional openings. Computational fluid dynamic models were undertaken to compare with the experimental and theoretical flushing characteristics. These were also consistent with the flushing prediction theory. When equilibrium was attained, the difference between the interface depths in the model was 33% greater than the theoretical prediction. The computational study with an additional opening supported the experimental evidence that there is no advantage to the flushing. Insight into small-scale processes unable to be accurately observed could be obtained from the models, e.g. oscillations of density interfaces and turbulent scales at the burrow openings. The consistency in prediction of flushing between the theoretical, experimental and computational methods, now allows modelling of more complex burrow structures with great confidence.

  6. COMPARISON OF CARBON AND NITROGEN FLUXES IN TIDEFLAT FOOD WEBS DOMINATED BY BURROWING SHRIMP OR BY CULTURED OYSTERS

    EPA Science Inventory

    Two species of indigenous, thalassinid burrowing shrimps are pests to the benthic culture of Pacific oysters (Crassostrea gigas) because deposition of sediment excavated by the shrimps buries or smothers the oysters. Carbaryl pesticide is used to reduce burrowing shrimp densitie...

  7. Effects of Fiddler Crab Burrows on Sediment Properties in the Mangrove Mudflats of Sungai Sepang, Malaysia

    PubMed Central

    Mokhtari, Mohammad; Abd Ghaffar, Mazlan; Usup, Gires; Che Cob, Zaidi

    2016-01-01

    In mangrove ecosystems, litter fall accumulates as refractory organic carbon on the sediment surface and creates anoxic sediment layers. Fiddler crabs, through their burrowing activity, translocate oxygen into the anoxic layers and promote aerobic respiration, iron reduction and nitrification. In this study, the effects of four species of fiddler crabs (Uca triangularis, Uca rosea, Uca forcipata and Uca paradussumieri) on organic content, water content, porosity, redox potential and solid phase iron pools of mangrove sediments were investigated. In each crab’s habitat, six cores down to 30 cm depth were taken from burrowed and non-burrowed sampling plots. Redox potential and oxidized iron pools were highest in surface sediment, while porosity, water and organic content were higher in deeper sediment. Reduced iron (Fe (II)) and redox potential were significantly different between burrowed and non-burrowed plots. Crab burrows extend the oxidized surface layer down to 4 cm depth and through the oxidation effect, reduce the organic content of sediments. The effects of burrows varied between the four species based on their shore location. The oxidation effect of burrows enhance the decomposition rate and stimulate iron reduction, which are processes that are expected to play an important role in biogeochemical properties of mangrove sediments. PMID:26797647

  8. The vibrational signals that male fiddler crabs ( Uca lactea) use to attract females into their burrows

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Takeshita, Fumio; Murai, Minoru

    2016-06-01

    In some fiddler crab species, males emit vibrations from their burrows to mate-searching females after they have attracted a female to the burrow entrance using a waving display. Although the vibrations are considered acoustic signals to induce mating, it has not been demonstrated whether the vibrations attract the females into the burrow and, consequently, influence females' mating decisions. We investigated the structures and patterns of the vibrations using a dummy female and demonstrated experimentally a female preference for male vibrations in Uca lactea in the field. The acoustic signals consisted of repetitions of pulses. The dominant frequency of the pulses decreased with male carapace width. The pulse length decreased slightly with an increasing number of vibrational repetitions, and the pulse interval increased with increasing repetitions. These factors imply that the vibrations convey information on male characteristics, such as body size and stamina. In the experiment on female mate choice, the females significantly preferred males with higher pulse repetition rates when they were positioned at the entrance of the burrow, indicating that the females use the male vibrational signals to decide whether to enter the burrow. However, females showed no preference for the vibrations once they were inside a burrow, i.e., whether they decided to copulate, suggesting that the vibrations do not independently affect a female's final decision of mate choice. The vibrations inside the burrow might influence a female's decision by interaction with other male traits such as the burrow structure.

  9. Effects of Fiddler Crab Burrows on Sediment Properties in the Mangrove Mudflats of Sungai Sepang, Malaysia.

    PubMed

    Mokhtari, Mohammad; Abd Ghaffar, Mazlan; Usup, Gires; Che Cob, Zaidi

    2016-01-01

    In mangrove ecosystems, litter fall accumulates as refractory organic carbon on the sediment surface and creates anoxic sediment layers. Fiddler crabs, through their burrowing activity, translocate oxygen into the anoxic layers and promote aerobic respiration, iron reduction and nitrification. In this study, the effects of four species of fiddler crabs (Uca triangularis, Uca rosea, Uca forcipata and Uca paradussumieri) on organic content, water content, porosity, redox potential and solid phase iron pools of mangrove sediments were investigated. In each crab's habitat, six cores down to 30 cm depth were taken from burrowed and non-burrowed sampling plots. Redox potential and oxidized iron pools were highest in surface sediment, while porosity, water and organic content were higher in deeper sediment. Reduced iron (Fe (II)) and redox potential were significantly different between burrowed and non-burrowed plots. Crab burrows extend the oxidized surface layer down to 4 cm depth and through the oxidation effect, reduce the organic content of sediments. The effects of burrows varied between the four species based on their shore location. The oxidation effect of burrows enhance the decomposition rate and stimulate iron reduction, which are processes that are expected to play an important role in biogeochemical properties of mangrove sediments. PMID:26797647

  10. Discrete genetic modules are responsible for complex burrow evolution in Peromyscus mice.

    PubMed

    Weber, Jesse N; Peterson, Brant K; Hoekstra, Hopi E

    2013-01-17

    Relative to morphological traits, we know little about how genetics influence the evolution of complex behavioural differences in nature. It is unclear how the environment influences natural variation in heritable behaviour, and whether complex behavioural differences evolve through few genetic changes, each affecting many aspects of behaviour, or through the accumulation of several genetic changes that, when combined, give rise to behavioural complexity. Here we show that in nature, oldfield mice (Peromyscus polionotus) build complex burrows with long entrance and escape tunnels, and that burrow length is consistent across populations, although burrow depth varies with soil composition. This burrow architecture is in contrast with the small, simple burrows of its sister species, deer mice (P. maniculatus). When investigated under laboratory conditions, both species recapitulate their natural burrowing behaviour. Genetic crosses between the two species reveal that the derived burrows of oldfield mice are dominant and evolved through the addition of multiple genetic changes. In burrows built by first-generation backcross mice, entrance-tunnel length and the presence of an escape tunnel can be uncoupled, suggesting that these traits are modular. Quantitative trait locus analysis also indicates that tunnel length segregates as a complex trait, affected by at least three independent genetic regions, whereas the presence of an escape tunnel is associated with only a single locus. Together, these results suggest that complex behaviours--in this case, a classic 'extended phenotype'--can evolve through multiple genetic changes each affecting distinct behaviour modules. PMID:23325221

  11. The vibrational signals that male fiddler crabs (Uca lactea) use to attract females into their burrows.

    PubMed

    Takeshita, Fumio; Murai, Minoru

    2016-06-01

    In some fiddler crab species, males emit vibrations from their burrows to mate-searching females after they have attracted a female to the burrow entrance using a waving display. Although the vibrations are considered acoustic signals to induce mating, it has not been demonstrated whether the vibrations attract the females into the burrow and, consequently, influence females' mating decisions. We investigated the structures and patterns of the vibrations using a dummy female and demonstrated experimentally a female preference for male vibrations in Uca lactea in the field. The acoustic signals consisted of repetitions of pulses. The dominant frequency of the pulses decreased with male carapace width. The pulse length decreased slightly with an increasing number of vibrational repetitions, and the pulse interval increased with increasing repetitions. These factors imply that the vibrations convey information on male characteristics, such as body size and stamina. In the experiment on female mate choice, the females significantly preferred males with higher pulse repetition rates when they were positioned at the entrance of the burrow, indicating that the females use the male vibrational signals to decide whether to enter the burrow. However, females showed no preference for the vibrations once they were inside a burrow, i.e., whether they decided to copulate, suggesting that the vibrations do not independently affect a female's final decision of mate choice. The vibrations inside the burrow might influence a female's decision by interaction with other male traits such as the burrow structure. PMID:27240863

  12. ENHANCED ORGANIC MATTER REMINERALIZATION AND NUTRIENT TURNOVER BY BURROWING SHRIMP POPULATIONS IN YAQUINA BAY, OR

    EPA Science Inventory

    Burrowing thalassinid shrimp are major ecological components of Pacific Northwest (PNW) estuaries and where they structure large areas of intertidal and shallow subtidal habitat. These crustaceans occur in dense beds (>250 m-2) and dig extensive burrow systems (>1 m) controlling ...

  13. Intraspecific variation in reproductive traits of burrowing owls

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Conway, Meaghan; Nadeau, Christopher P.; Conway, Courtney J.

    2012-01-01

    Reviews of hatching asynchrony in birds recommended more studies on intraspecific variation in the extent of hatching asynchrony. We examined intraspecific variation in clutch size, laying chronology, onset of incubation, incubation period, and hatching asynchrony in burrowing owls (Athene cunicularia) in the Imperial Valley of California. Mean clutch size was 7.4 eggs and owls averaged 0.5 eggs laid per day. Females varied considerably in laying interval and onset of incubation (range = 1st to 9th egg in the clutch). The mean incubation period was 21.9 days. Hatching interval also varied greatly among females (x = 0.8, range 0.1-2.0 days between successively hatched eggs). Past burrowing owl studies have largely overlooked the substantial intraspecific variation in these traits or have reported estimates that differ from ours. Future studies designed to identify the environmental factors that explain the large intraspecific variation in these traits will likely provide insights into the constraints on local abundance.

  14. Blood characteristics, tracheal volume and heart mass of burrowing owls (Athene cunicularia) and bobwhite (Colinus virginianus).

    PubMed

    Boggs, D F; Birchard, G F; Kilgore, D L

    1983-01-01

    1. Measurements of certain hematological and morphological characteristics were made in burrowing owls and bobwhite in search of features that could be associated with the previously described ventilatory adaptations of the burrowing owl to hypoxia and hypercarbia. 2. Values for burrowing owls and bobwhite, respectively, were: P50 = 44.9, 46.0 torr; Hct = 36.6, 38.8 vol%, Hb = 12, 12.3 (g/100 ml); RBC = 2.72 X 10(6), 3.02 X 10(6); log P50/pH = -0.412, -0.485; delta log PCO2/delta pH = -1.39, -1.585. 3. The owls had greater heart weights and smaller tracheal volumes than the bobwhite or the predicted value. 4. No hematological characteristics of the burrowing bird distinguish it from the non-burrowing bird. PMID:6132713

  15. Vertical distribution of soil removed by four species of burrowing rodents in disturbed and undisturbed soils

    SciTech Connect

    Reynolds, T.D.; Laundre, J.W.

    1988-04-01

    Burrow volumes were determined in disturbed and undisturbed soils for four species of rodents in southeastern Idaho. Comparisons were made between soil types for the average volume and the proportion of the total volume of soil excavated from 10-cm increments for each species, and the relative number of burrows and proportion of total soil removed from beneath the minimum thickness of soil covers over buried low-level radioactive wastes. Burrows of montane voles (Microtus montanus) and deer mice (Peromyscus maniculatus) rarely extended below 50 cm and neither volumes nor depths were influenced by soil disturbance. Townsend's ground squirrels (Spermophilus townsendii) had the deepest and most voluminous burrows that, along with Ord's kangaroo rat (Dipodomys ordii) burrows, were more prevalent beneath 50 cm in disturbed soils.

  16. Land crabs as key drivers in tropical coastal forest recruitment

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Lindquist, E.S.; Krauss, K.W.; Green, P.T.; O'Dowd, D. J.; Sherman, P.M.; Smith, T. J., III

    2009-01-01

    Plant populations are regulated by a diverse assortment of abiotic and biotic factors that influence seed dispersal and viability, and seedling establishment and growth at the microsite. Rarely does one animal guild exert as significant an influence on different plant assemblages as land crabs. We review three tropical coastal ecosystems-mangroves, island maritime forests, and mainland coastal terrestrial forests-where land crabs directly influence forest composition by limiting tree establishment and recruitment. Land crabs differentially prey on seeds, propagules and seedlings along nutrient, chemical and physical environmental gradients. In all of these ecosystems, but especially mangroves, abiotic gradients are well studied, strong and influence plant species distributions. However, we suggest that crab predation has primacy over many of these environmental factors by acting as the first limiting factor of tropical tree recruitment to drive the potential structural and compositional organisation of coastal forests. We show that the influence of crabs varies relative to tidal gradient, shoreline distance, canopy position, time, season, tree species and fruiting periodicity. Crabs also facilitate forest growth and development through such activities as excavation of burrows, creation of soil mounds, aeration of soils, removal of leaf litter into burrows and creation of carbon-rich soil microhabitats. For all three systems, land crabs influence the distribution, density and size-class structure of tree populations. Indeed, crabs are among the major drivers of tree recruitment in tropical coastal forest ecosystems, and their conservation should be included in management plans of these forests. ?? 2009 Cambridge Philosophical Society.

  17. River bank burrowing by invasive crayfish: Spatial distribution, biophysical controls and biogeomorphic significance.

    PubMed

    Faller, Matej; Harvey, Gemma L; Henshaw, Alexander J; Bertoldi, Walter; Bruno, Maria Cristina; England, Judy

    2016-11-01

    Invasive species generate significant global environmental and economic costs and represent a particularly potent threat to freshwater systems. The biogeomorphic impacts of invasive aquatic and riparian species on river processes and landforms remain largely unquantified, but have the potential to generate significant sediment management issues within invaded catchments. Several species of invasive (non-native) crayfish are known to burrow into river banks and visual evidence of river bank damage is generating public concern and media attention. Despite this, there is a paucity of understanding of burrow distribution, biophysical controls and the potential significance of this problem beyond a small number of local studies at heavily impacted sites. This paper presents the first multi-catchment analysis of this phenomenon, combining existing data on biophysical river properties and invasive crayfish observations with purpose-designed field surveys across 103 river reaches to derive key trends. Crayfish burrows were observed on the majority of reaches, but burrowing tended to be patchy in spatial distribution, concentrated in a small proportion (<10%) of the length of rivers surveyed. Burrow distribution was better explained by local bank biophysical properties than by reach-scale properties, and burrowed banks were more likely to be characterised by cohesive bank material, steeper bank profiles with large areas of bare bank face, often on outer bend locations. Burrow excavation alone has delivered a considerable amount of sediment to invaded river systems in the surveyed sites (3tkm(-1) impacted bank) and this represents a minimum contribution and certainly an underestimate of the absolute yield (submerged burrows were not recorded). Furthermore, burrowing was associated with bank profiles that were either actively eroding or exposed to fluvial action and/or mass failure processes, providing the first quantitative evidence that invasive crayfish may cause or

  18. Spilled oil and infaunal activity - Modification of burrowing behavior and redistribution of oil

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Clifton, H.E.; Kvenvolden, K.A.; Rapp, J.B.

    1984-01-01

    A series of experiments in Willapa Bay, Washington, indicates the degree to which the presence of spilled oil modifies the burrowing behavior of infauna and the extent to which the animals redistribute oil into intertidal sediment. Small amounts of North Slope crude oil introduced at low tide directly into burrow openings (mostly made by the crustacean Callianassa) resulted in a limited and temporary reduction in the number of burrow openings. In contrast, a layer of oil-saturated sand 1 cm thick buried about 5 cm below the sediment surface sharply reduced the number of burrow openings. After a year, the few new burrows penetrated only the margins of the experimental plot, and bioturbation below the buried oil-saturated sand layer declined dramatically. The experiments suggest that small amounts of oil temporarily stranded by tides in themselves have no long-range effect on burrowing behavior. The fauna, however, are capable of introducing measurable amounts of oil into the subsurface, where it is retained long after the rest of the stranded oil had washed away. A buried layer of oil-saturated sand greatly reduces infaunal activity; the oil presents an effective barrier that can persist for years. The oil incorporated into the sediment from burrow openings showed evidence of degradation after 7 months. In contrast the layer of buried oil remained essentially undergraded after a period of two years, even though oil in lower concentrations above the layer was degraded after a period of one year. This variation in degree of degradation of the buried oil, as well as the heterogeneity of oil distribution wherever the oil has been incorporated from the surface, emphasises the importance of careful sampling in any attempt to locate or monitor the presence of spilled oil in the substrate.In a series of experiments in Willapa Bay, Washington, small amounts of North Slope crude oil introduced at low tide directly into burrow openings resulted in a limited and temporary

  19. Burrow morphology of Uca uruguayensis and Uca leptodactylus (Decapoda: Ocypodidae) from a subtropical mangrove forest in the western Atlantic.

    PubMed

    Machado, Glauco B O; Gusmão-Junior, João B L; Costa, Tânia M

    2013-09-01

    The continuous excavation of burrows by fiddler crabs generates bioturbation in the sediment, which can be estimated from burrow morphology. The aim of the present study was to describe the burrow morphology of Uca uruguayensis and U. leptodactylus and its relationship with demography of resident individuals and to estimate the level of bioturbation in the sediment generated by each species. For all individuals from each of the 2 species, sex was determined and the carapace width (CW; mm) measured. Burrows were characterized according to burrow diameter (BD; mm), maximum burrow depth (MBD; mm) and burrow volume (BV; cm(3) ). The density of each species in the study area was also evaluated. In both species, the males were larger and occupied burrows with higher BV compared to females. Differences between sexes in relation to the burrow characteristics might reflect sexual dimorphism within the group and are probably related to the fact that males use the burrows for mating. BD and BV showed significant positive relationships with the size of resident crabs. The amount of sediment removed per burrow was estimated from mean BV: 10.78 cm(3) of sediment/burrow for U. uruguayensis and 12.38 cm(3) of sediment/burrow for U. leptodactylus. Despite the density and depth differences between the 2 species, the similarity in burrow volume suggests that U. uruguayensis and U. leptodactylus present the same importance in terms of the bioturbation process. Burrow morphology is highly associated with characteristics of the occupant, although extrinsic factors should also be considered, and its description can provide estimates on the bioturbation generated by Uca species in mangrove forests. PMID:24020469

  20. Self-burrowing seeds: drag reduction in granular media

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jung, Wonjong; Choi, Sung Mok; Kim, Wonjung; Kim, Ho-Young

    2014-11-01

    We present the results of a combined experimental and theoretical investigation of drag reduction of self-burrowing seeds in granular media. In response to environmental changes in humidity, the awn (a tail-like appendage of seed) of Pelargonium carnosum exhibits coiling-uncoiling deformation which induces the thrust and rotary motions of the head of the seed against the surface of the soil. Using various sizes of glass beads that mimic the granular soil, we measure the thrust forces required for the seed of Pelargonium carnosum to penetrate into granular media with and without rotation. Our quantitative measurements show that the rotation of the seed remarkably reduces the granular drag as compared to the drag against the non-spinning seed. This leads us to conclude that the hygroscopically active awns of Pelargonium carnosum enables its seed to dig into the relatively coarse granular soils.

  1. Blood oxygen binding properties for the burrowing owl, Athene cunicularia.

    PubMed

    Maginniss, L A; Kilgore, D L

    1989-05-01

    Isocapnic O2 equilibrium curves (O2ECs) were generated for whole blood of 4 adult burrowing owls (Athene cunicularia) using thin film techniques. At in vivo pHa (7.49 +/- 0.02; mean +/- 1 SEM) and 41 degrees C, the PO2 at half saturation (P50) was 42.3 +/- 0.8 Torr. CO2 and fixed acid (H+) Bohr slopes (delta log P50/delta pH) were -0.46 +/- 0.01 and -0.42 +/- 0.02, respectively, demonstrating a small specific CO2 effect. CO2 and H+ Bohr slopes were saturation-independent between 0.1 and 0.9 S. Hill plots for Athene blood were non-linear; the Hill coefficient (n) increased from 2.6 below 0.4 S to 3.4 above 0.6 S. Owl equilibrium data were accurately described by the equation: S = [(7.7 x 10(6]/(P4 + 44P3 - 108P2 + 3.5 x 10(4)P) + 1]-1. This complex O2EC shape may result from Hb heterogeneity; isoelectric focusing showed 4 isoHbs with a molar ratio of 9:1:1:1. This study revealed no apparent adaptations of Athene blood for hypoxic and hypercapnic conditions. We conclude that the observed blood O2 binding properties promote tissue O2 delivery during periods of surface activity. While occupying its burrow, the owl compensates for moderate alterations in inspired gas composition partly through increased ventilation. PMID:2749025

  2. Burrowing mayflies (Hexagenia) as indicators of ecosystem health

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Edsall, Thomas A.

    2001-01-01

    Three State of the Lakes Ecosystem Conferences have been held since 1996 to encourage the development of Great Lakes indicators of ecosystem health for use in reporting on progress in restoring and maintaining the chemical, physical and biological integrity of the Great Lakes ecosystem. Here we report on the development of an indicator based on burrowing mayflies, Hexagenia (Ephemeroptera: Ephemeridae), using production and biomass as the indicator metrics. Burrowing mayflies were selected because they (1) were historically abundant in unpolluted, soft-bottomed mesotrophic habitats throughout the Great Lakes, (2) are intolerant of and were extirpated by pollution in most of those habitats during the 1940s to 1950s, (3) have shown the ability to recover in one of those habitats following pollution abatement, (4) are ecologically important as bioturbators of lakebed sediments and as trophic integrators that link detrital energy resources directly to fishes that feed preferentially on them, and (5) have highly visible mating flights, which carry the message directly to an informed public that the source water body is healthy. In addition, their annual production can be estimated from their mean annual biomass by the size-frequency method. Productivity and biomass can also be estimated with a 'cohort-direct' method, using the biomass of mature nymphs collected in May or early June from the cohort that is about to emerge as subimagos in late June or early July. Although both the size-frequency and cohort-direct methods provide reliable estimates of productivity and biomass, the latter method greatly reduces sample collection and processing effort and thus makes it feasible to use Hexagenia as an indicator of ecosystem health in surveys requiring the collection of large numbers of samples.

  3. Burrowing and huddling in newborn porcupine: the effect on thermoregulation.

    PubMed

    Haim, A; Van Aarde, R J; Skinner, J D

    1992-08-01

    The newborn cape porcupine Hystrix africaeaustralis is a precocial rodent. However, the newborn spends its first 9 weeks in the burrow. Heat production (oxygen consumption--VO2) and body temperature (Tb) were measured at various ambient temperatures (Ta) in newborn (4-8-week-old) porcupines, with a body mass between 1340-1993 g during summer, from the colony kept at the Mammal Research Institute, University of Pretoria. To assess the effect of huddling, these parameters were also measured in adult pairs of porcupines (Ta = 15 and 25 degrees C) kept together in the metabolic chamber and the values were compared with those obtained from single porcupines. Overall minimal thermal conductance was calculated for newborn and paired adult porcupines. The newborn porcupines can regulate their body temperature at Tas between 10-28 degrees C. VO2 measured at lower critical point is 0.602 +/- 0.08 ml/O2/g.h. At Ta = 10 degrees C, VO2 oscillated with a characteristic amplitude and frequency, while body temperature was well regulated. Huddling decreases the lower critical point. The overall minimal thermal conductance (0.044 +/- 0.002 ml O2/g.h.1 degree C) is higher than expected from body mass, so that the young are liable to lose heat rapidly. It is well known that the newborn porcupine spends a long period in the burrow and the results of this study suggest that this may be in order to conserve energy and presumably allocate it to growth. Apart from decreasing vulnerability, delaying foraging also avoids heat loss in the newborn porcupine. PMID:1523249

  4. Adjustment to Recruit Training.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Anderson, Betty S.

    The thesis examines problems of adjustment encountered by new recruits entering the military services. Factors affecting adjustment are discussed: the recruit training staff and environment, recruit background characteristics, the military's image, the changing values and motivations of today's youth, and the recruiting process. Sources of…

  5. Use of burrow entrances to indicate densities of Townsend's ground squirrels

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Van Horne, Beatrice; Schooley, R.L.; Knick, Steven T.; Olson, G.S.; Burnham, K.P.

    1997-01-01

    Counts of burrow entrances have been positively correlated with densities of semi-fossorial rodents and used as an index of densities. We evaluated their effectiveness in indexing densities of Townsend's ground squirrels (Spermophilus townsendii) in the Snake River Birds of Prey National Conservation Area (SRBOPNCA), Idaho, by comparing burrow entrance densities to densities of ground squirrels estimated from livetrapping in 2 consecutive years over which squirrel populations declined by >75%. We did not detect a consistent relation between burrow entrance counts and ground squirrel density estimates within or among habitat types. Scatter plots indicated that burrow entrances had little predictive power at intermediate densities. Burrow entrance counts did not reflect the magnitude of a between-year density decline. Repeated counts of entrances late in the squirrels' active season varied in a manner that would be difficult to use for calibration of transects sampled only once during this period. Annual persistence of burrow entrances varied between habitats. Trained observers were inconsistent in assigning active-inactive status to entrances. We recommend that burrow entrance counts not be used as measures or indices of ground squirrel densities in shrubsteppe habitats, and that the method be verified thoroughly before being used in other habitats.

  6. Lungfish burrows in the Upper Triassic Chinle and Dolores Formations, Colorado Plateau ( USA).

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Dubiel, R.F.; Blodgett, R.H.; Bown, T.M.

    1987-01-01

    Vertical-to-inclined, cylindrical trace fossils that occur in the Upper Triassic Chinle and Dolores Formations on the Colorado Plateau are interpreted to be the casts of lungfish burrows based on their morphologic similarity to previously identified lungfish burrows. The casts were formed by passive siliciclastic and carbonate sedimentation into apparently abandoned lungfish burrows. Locally, the burrow fillings are overwhelmingly abundant, and many intersect and have destroyed former burrow fillings. Bioturbation has contributed to the mottled coloration and the knobby-weathering texture of the rocks. The burrow-fillings occur ubiquitously in three lithofacies, deposited in a continental environment that included fluvial channels and floodplains, sand sheets and playa mudflats, and lacustrine basins, marshes, and deltas. The widespread occurrence of the lungfish burrows in the Chinle and Dolores Formations attests to the extensive habitat that supported lungfish in the Late Triassic. Analogy with the environments that support modern lungfish populations suggests that the Late Triassic climate in the study area provided sufficient moisture to support large populations of lungfish and that this climate was probably punctuated by seasonally dry periods. -from Authors

  7. It's tough to be small: dependence of burrowing kinematics on body size.

    PubMed

    Che, James; Dorgan, Kelly M

    2010-04-01

    Burrowing marine infauna are morphologically diverse and range in size over several orders of magnitude. Whilst effects of ontogenetic and morphological differences on running, flying and swimming are relatively well understood, similar analyses of burrowing mechanics and kinematics are lacking. The polychaete Nereis virens Sars extends its burrow by fracture, using an eversible pharynx to exert force on the walls of the burrow. The resulting stress is amplified at the anterior tip of the burrow, which extends when the stress exceeds the fracture toughness of the material. Here we show that the polychaete Cirriformia moorei extends its burrow by a similar mechanism, but by using its hydrostatic skeleton rather than an eversible pharynx. Based on the dimensionless wedge number, which relates work of fracture to work to maintain body shape against the elasticity of sediment, we predicted that smaller worms would exhibit behaviors characteristic of tougher sediments and that scaling of kinematics would reflect decreasing difficulty in fracturing sediment with increasing body size. We found that smaller worms were relatively blunter and thicker, and had a greater variation of thickness than larger worms as they burrowed. Although these kinematic differences increase the stress amplification at the crack tip, smaller worms still generate lower stress intensity factors. The greater relative body thickness and shape changes of smaller worms are consistent with ontogenetic changes in forces exerted by earthworms, and are likely driven by the challenge of exerting enough stress to extend a crack with a small body size. PMID:20348335

  8. First trace and body fossil evidence of a burrowing, denning dinosaur

    PubMed Central

    Varricchio, David J; Martin, Anthony J; Katsura, Yoshihiro

    2007-01-01

    A fossil discovery in the mid-Cretaceous Blackleaf Formation of southwest Montana, USA, has yielded the first trace and body fossil evidence of burrowing behaviour in a dinosaur. Skeletal remains of an adult and two juveniles of Oryctodromeus cubicularis gen. et sp. nov., a new species of hypsilophodont-grade dinosaur, were found in the expanded distal chamber of a sediment-filled burrow. Correspondence between burrow and adult dimensions supports Oryctodromeus as the burrow maker. Additionally, Oryctodromeus exhibits features of the snout, shoulder girdle and pelvis consistent with digging habits while retaining cursorial hindlimb proportions. Association of adult and young within a terminal chamber provides definitive evidence of extensive parental care in the Dinosauria. As with modern vertebrate cursors that dig, burrowing in Oryctodromeus may have been an important adaptation for the rearing of young. Burrowing also represents a mechanism by which small dinosaurs may have exploited the extreme environments of polar latitudes, deserts and high mountain areas. The ability among dinosaurs to find or make shelter may contradict some scenarios of the Cretaceous–Paleogene impact event. Burrowing habits expand the known range of nonavian dinosaur behaviours and suggest that the cursorial ancestry of dinosaurs did not fully preclude the evolution of different functional regimes, such as fossoriality. PMID:17374596

  9. Polychaete burrows harbour distinct microbial communities in oil-contaminated coastal sediments.

    PubMed

    Taylor, Joe D; Cunliffe, Michael

    2015-08-01

    Previous studies have shown that the bioturbating polychaete Hediste (Nereis) diversicolor can affect the composition of bacterial communities in oil-contaminated sediments, but have not considered diversity specifically within bioturbator burrows or the impact on microbial eukaryotes. We tested the hypothesis that H. diversicolor burrows harbour different eukaryotic and bacterial communities compared with un-bioturbated sediment, and that bioturbation stimulates oil degradation. Oil-contaminated sediment was incubated with or without H. diversicolor for 30 days, after which sediment un-affected by H. diversicolor and burrow DNA/RNA samples were analysed using quantitative reverse transcription PCR (Q-RT-PCR) and high-throughput sequencing. Fungi dominated both burrow and un-bioturbated sediment sequence libraries; however, there was significant enrichment of bacterivorous protists and nematodes in the burrows. There were also significant differences between the bacterial communities in burrows compared with un-bioturbated sediment. Increased activity and relative abundance of aerobic hydrocarbon-degrading bacteria in the burrows coincided with the significant reduction in hydrocarbon concentration in the bioturbated sediment. This study represents the first detailed assessment of the effect of bioturbation on total microbial communities in oil-contaminated sediments. In addition, it further shows that bioturbation is a significant factor in determining microbial diversity within polluted sediments and plays an important role in stimulating bioremediation. PMID:25858418

  10. Large-Diameter Burrows of the Triassic Ischigualasto Basin, NW Argentina: Paleoecological and Paleoenvironmental Implications

    PubMed Central

    Colombi, Carina E.; Fernández, Eliana; Currie, Brian S.; Alcober, Oscar A.; Martínez, Ricardo; Correa, Gustavo

    2012-01-01

    Large-diameter ichnofossils comprising three morphotypes have been identified in the Upper Triassic Ischigualasto and Los Colorados formations of northwestern Argentina. These burrows add to the global record of the early appearance of fossorial behavior during early Mesozoic time. Morphotypes 1 and 2 are characterized by a network of tunnels and shafts that can be assigned to tetrapod burrows given similarities with previously described forms. However, differences in diameter, overall morphology, and stratigraphic occurrence allow their independent classification. Morphotype 3 forms a complex network of straight branches that intersect at oblique angles. Their calcareous composition and surface morphology indicate these structures have a composite biogenic origin likely developed due to combined plant/animal interactions. The association of Morphotypes 1 and 2 with fluvial overbank lithologies deposited under an extremely seasonal arid climate confirms interpretations that the early appearance of burrowing behavior was employed by vertebrates in response to both temperature and moisture-stress associated with seasonally or perpetually dry Pangean paleoclimates. Comparisons of burrow morphology and biomechanical attributes of the abundant paleovertebrate fauna preserved in both formations permit interpretations regarding the possible burrow architects for Morphotypes 1 and 2. In the case of the Morphotype 1, the burrow constructor could be one of the small carnivorous cynodonts, Ecteninion or Probelesodon. Assigning an architect for Morphotype 2 is more problematic due to mismatches between the observed burrow morphology and the size of the known Los Colorados vertebrates. PMID:23227195

  11. The influence of small mammal burrowing activity on water storage at the Hanford Site

    SciTech Connect

    Landeen, D.S.

    1994-09-01

    The amount and rate at which water may penetrate a protective barrier and come into contact with buried radioactive waste is a major concern. Because burrowing animals eventually will reside on the surface of any protective barrier, the effect these burrow systems may have on the loss or retention of water needs to be determined. The first section of this document summarizes the known literature relative to small mammals and the effects that burrowing activities have on water distribution, infiltration, and the overall impact of burrows on the ecosystem. Topics that are summarized include burrow air pressures, airflow, burrow humidity, microtopography, mounding, infiltration, climate, soil evaporation, and discussions of large pores relative to water distribution. The second section of this document provides the results of the study that was conducted at the Hanford Site to determine what effect small mammal burrows have on water storage. This Biointrusion task is identified in the Permanent Isolation Surface Barrier Development Plan in support of protective barriers. This particular animal intrusion task is one part of the overall animal intrusion task identified in Animal Intrusion Test Plan.

  12. Amplification and spectral shifts of vocalizations inside burrows of the frog Eupsophus calcaratus (Leptodactylidae)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Penna, Mario

    2004-08-01

    A variety of animals that communicate by sound emit signals from sites favoring their propagation, thereby increasing the range over which these sounds convey information. A different significance of calling sites has been reported for burrowing frogs Eupsophus emiliopugini from southern Chile: the cavities from which these frogs vocalize amplify conspecific vocalizations generated externally, thus providing a means to enhance the reception of neighbor's vocalizations in chorusing aggregations. In the current study the amplification of vocalizations of a related species, E. calcaratus, is investigated, to explore the extent of sound enhancement reported previously. Advertisement calls broadcast through a loudspeaker placed in the vicinity of a burrow, monitored with small microphones, are amplified by up to 18 dB inside cavities relative to outside. The fundamental resonant frequency of burrows, measured with broadcast noise and pure tones, ranges from 842 to 1836 Hz and is significantly correlated with the burrow's length. Burrows change the spectral envelope of incoming calls by increasing the amplitude of lower relative to higher harmonics. The call amplification effect inside burrows of E. calcaratus parallels the effect reported previously for E. emiliopugini, and indicates that the acoustic properties of calling sites may affect signal reception by burrowing animals.

  13. Spatial organization of desert tortoises and their burrows at a landscape scale

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Duda, Jeffrey J.; Krzysik, Anthony J.; Meloche, Joel M.

    2001-01-01

    We thoroughly surveyed two 9 km 2 study plots using 624 km of transect lines in the south- central Mojave Desert, California, mapping with a precision global positioning system the location of desert tortoises (Gopherus agassizii) and their burrows. We found 98 desert tortoises and 1463 tortoise burrows. Three separate geospatial methods (quadrat-variance, nearest neighbor, and 3 geospatial functions) confirmed that active and total desert tortoise burrows were aggregated on the landscape at multiple spatial scales. Desert tortoises also displayed an aggregated pattern, although results were not consistent between the two plots. We also found a significant positive association between desert tortoises and their burrows using Type II linear regression and Ripley's K 12(t) function. A strong positive association between active burrows/km 2 and tortoises/km2 (r2 = 0.88) and between total burrows/km2 and tortoises/km2 (r2 = 0.80) and the supporting results of Ripley's K 12(t) geospatial function suggest that, within a given year and locality, desert tortoise burrows can be used to determine relative desert tortoise density patterns.

  14. Chemically mediated burrow recognition in the Mexican tarantula Brachypelma vagans female.

    PubMed

    Dor, Ariane; Machkour-M'Rabet, Salima; Legal, Luc; Williams, Trevor; Hénaut, Yann

    2008-12-01

    Chemically mediated communication is common in spiders but has been poorly studied in burrowing tarantulas. This study aimed to determine whether chemical cues influence the behaviour of females of Brachypelma vagans, a Mexican species of tarantula, during encounters with previously inhabited burrows or with extracts from the silk of conspecific females. In laboratory choice tests, female tarantulas entered a burrow that had previously been inhabited by a conspecific female significantly more frequently than a burrow that had never been inhabited. The identity of the previous inhabitant also affected the number of spiders that chose to enter a burrow. Spiders were quicker to choose and enter a burrow previously inhabited by themselves than a burrow previously inhabited by a conspecific or a burrow that had not been previously inhabited. Hexane, methanol and dichloromethane extracts of conspecific silk elicited different responses from female tarantulas when extracts were placed on filter paper disks at one end of an experimental arena with a control filter paper disk, on to which the corresponding solvent alone had been pipetted, placed on the other end of the arena. Spiders showed the strongest responses to hexane extracts of silk, with a significant preference to move towards the hexane extract and a significantly greater period of time spent in proximity to the hexane extract compared to the control disk. Overall and in contrast to expectations, tarantulas were most strongly attracted to the cues left by other conspecific females. As encounters between B. vagans females usually lead to aggression and mortality of one of the participants, we conclude that chemical cues are not signals that are deliberately released by burrow-inhabiting females but may inadvertently escape and cannot be easily suppressed. PMID:18712335

  15. Similar burrow architecture of three arid-zone scorpion species implies similar ecological function.

    PubMed

    Adams, Amanda M; Marais, Eugene; Turner, J Scott; Prendini, Lorenzo; Pinshow, Berry

    2016-08-01

    Many animals reside in burrows that may serve as refuges from predators and adverse environmental conditions. Burrow design varies widely among and within taxa, and these structures are adaptive, fulfilling physiological (and other) functions. We examined the burrow architecture of three scorpion species of the family Scorpionidae: Scorpio palmatus from the Negev desert, Israel; Opistophthalmus setifrons, from the Central Highlands, Namibia; and Opistophthalmus wahlbergii from the Kalahari desert, Namibia. We hypothesized that burrow structure maintains temperature and soil moisture conditions optimal for the behavior and physiology of the scorpion. Casts of burrows, poured in situ with molten aluminum, were scanned in 3D to quantify burrow structure. Three architectural features were common to the burrows of all species: (1) a horizontal platform near the ground surface, long enough to accommodate the scorpion, located just below the entrance, 2-5 cm under the surface, which may provide a safe place where the scorpion can monitor the presence of potential prey, predators, and mates and where the scorpion warms up before foraging; (2) at least two bends that might deter incursion by predators and may reduce convective ventilation, thereby maintaining relatively high humidity and low temperature; and (3) an enlarged terminal chamber to a depth at which temperatures are almost constant (±2-4 °C). These common features among the burrows of three different species suggest that they are important for regulating the physical environment of their inhabitants and that burrows are part of scorpions' "extended physiology" (sensu Turner, Physiol Biochem Zool 74:798-822, 2000). PMID:27312362

  16. Chemically mediated burrow recognition in the Mexican tarantula Brachypelma vagans female

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dor, Ariane; Machkour-M'rabet, Salima; Legal, Luc; Williams, Trevor; Hénaut, Yann

    2008-12-01

    Chemically mediated communication is common in spiders but has been poorly studied in burrowing tarantulas. This study aimed to determine whether chemical cues influence the behaviour of females of Brachypelma vagans, a Mexican species of tarantula, during encounters with previously inhabited burrows or with extracts from the silk of conspecific females. In laboratory choice tests, female tarantulas entered a burrow that had previously been inhabited by a conspecific female significantly more frequently than a burrow that had never been inhabited. The identity of the previous inhabitant also affected the number of spiders that chose to enter a burrow. Spiders were quicker to choose and enter a burrow previously inhabited by themselves than a burrow previously inhabited by a conspecific or a burrow that had not been previously inhabited. Hexane, methanol and dichloromethane extracts of conspecific silk elicited different responses from female tarantulas when extracts were placed on filter paper disks at one end of an experimental arena with a control filter paper disk, on to which the corresponding solvent alone had been pipetted, placed on the other end of the arena. Spiders showed the strongest responses to hexane extracts of silk, with a significant preference to move towards the hexane extract and a significantly greater period of time spent in proximity to the hexane extract compared to the control disk. Overall and in contrast to expectations, tarantulas were most strongly attracted to the cues left by other conspecific females. As encounters between B. vagans females usually lead to aggression and mortality of one of the participants, we conclude that chemical cues are not signals that are deliberately released by burrow-inhabiting females but may inadvertently escape and cannot be easily suppressed.

  17. Similar burrow architecture of three arid-zone scorpion species implies similar ecological function

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Adams, Amanda M.; Marais, Eugene; Turner, J. Scott; Prendini, Lorenzo; Pinshow, Berry

    2016-08-01

    Many animals reside in burrows that may serve as refuges from predators and adverse environmental conditions. Burrow design varies widely among and within taxa, and these structures are adaptive, fulfilling physiological (and other) functions. We examined the burrow architecture of three scorpion species of the family Scorpionidae: Scorpio palmatus from the Negev desert, Israel; Opistophthalmus setifrons, from the Central Highlands, Namibia; and Opistophthalmus wahlbergii from the Kalahari desert, Namibia. We hypothesized that burrow structure maintains temperature and soil moisture conditions optimal for the behavior and physiology of the scorpion. Casts of burrows, poured in situ with molten aluminum, were scanned in 3D to quantify burrow structure. Three architectural features were common to the burrows of all species: (1) a horizontal platform near the ground surface, long enough to accommodate the scorpion, located just below the entrance, 2-5 cm under the surface, which may provide a safe place where the scorpion can monitor the presence of potential prey, predators, and mates and where the scorpion warms up before foraging; (2) at least two bends that might deter incursion by predators and may reduce convective ventilation, thereby maintaining relatively high humidity and low temperature; and (3) an enlarged terminal chamber to a depth at which temperatures are almost constant (±2-4 °C). These common features among the burrows of three different species suggest that they are important for regulating the physical environment of their inhabitants and that burrows are part of scorpions' "extended physiology" ( sensu Turner, Physiol Biochem Zool 74:798-822, 2000).

  18. Ectoparasites of Burrowing Owls (Athene cunicularia hypugaea) wintering in southern Texas

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Skoruppa, M.K.; Pearce, B.; Woodin, M.C.; Hickman, G.C.

    2006-01-01

    Fifteen Western Burrowing Owls (Athene cunicularia hypugaea) were captured over two winters (2001-2003) in southern Texas and examined for ectoparasites. Four of the 15 owls (27%) harbored feather lice, and the maximum number of lice found on any individual was ??? three. Two species of feather lice were found: Colpocephalum pectinatum occurred on three of the owls, and Strigiphilus speotyti was found on four owls. No fleas or other ectoparasites were found on any of the Burrowing Owls. The low diversity and numbers of ectoparasites suggest that ectoparasites are not threatening the health of wintering Burrowing Owls in southern Texas.

  19. The evolution of soil-burrowing cockroaches (Blattaria: Blaberidae) from wood-burrowing ancestors following an invasion of the latter from Asia into Australia.

    PubMed Central

    Maekawa, Kiyoto; Lo, Nathan; Rose, Harley A.; Matsumoto, Tadao

    2003-01-01

    Morphologically similar cockroaches in the subfamilies Panesthiinae and Geoscapheinae (Blattaria: Blaberidae) display contrasting feeding habits, behaviour and biogeographical distributions. Panesthiinae, found throughout Asia and Australia, all live in and feed on decaying wood that they burrow into. Geoscapheinae are restricted to Australia and construct and live in burrows in the soil, where they feed on dry leaves taken from the surface. A lack of knowledge about phylogenetic relationships among these cockroaches hinders an understanding of the factors that have shaped the evolution of their diverse lifestyles and biogeography. To address this issue, we sequenced three genes from representatives of nine of the 10 genera in the two subfamilies, and performed phylogenetic analyses. The well-supported topology revealed the Panesthiinae to be paraphyletic with respect to the Geoscapheinae. Soil-burrowing cockroaches appear to have evolved from a lineage of wood burrowers that invaded Australia from the north some time after the merging of the Asian and Australian tectonic plates ca. 20 Myr ago. The main factor promoting the evolution of soil burrowing is likely to have been one of the periods of strong aridity that Australia has experienced since the Miocene period. PMID:12816644

  20. The evolution of soil-burrowing cockroaches (Blattaria: Blaberidae) from wood-burrowing ancestors following an invasion of the latter from Asia into Australia.

    PubMed

    Maekawa, Kiyoto; Lo, Nathan; Rose, Harley A; Matsumoto, Tadao

    2003-06-22

    Morphologically similar cockroaches in the subfamilies Panesthiinae and Geoscapheinae (Blattaria: Blaberidae) display contrasting feeding habits, behaviour and biogeographical distributions. Panesthiinae, found throughout Asia and Australia, all live in and feed on decaying wood that they burrow into. Geoscapheinae are restricted to Australia and construct and live in burrows in the soil, where they feed on dry leaves taken from the surface. A lack of knowledge about phylogenetic relationships among these cockroaches hinders an understanding of the factors that have shaped the evolution of their diverse lifestyles and biogeography. To address this issue, we sequenced three genes from representatives of nine of the 10 genera in the two subfamilies, and performed phylogenetic analyses. The well-supported topology revealed the Panesthiinae to be paraphyletic with respect to the Geoscapheinae. Soil-burrowing cockroaches appear to have evolved from a lineage of wood burrowers that invaded Australia from the north some time after the merging of the Asian and Australian tectonic plates ca. 20 Myr ago. The main factor promoting the evolution of soil burrowing is likely to have been one of the periods of strong aridity that Australia has experienced since the Miocene period. PMID:12816644

  1. Determinants of between-year burrow re-occupation in a colony of the European bee-eater Merops apiaster

    PubMed Central

    Brust, Vera; Bastian, Hans-Valentin; Bastian, Anita; Schmoll, Tim

    2015-01-01

    Re-occupation of existing nesting burrows in the European bee-eater Merops apiaster has only rarely – and if so mostly anecdotically – been documented in the literature record, although such behavior would substantially save time and energy. In this study, we quantify burrow re-occupation in a German colony over a period of eleven years and identify ecological variables determining reuse probability. Of 179 recorded broods, 54% took place in a reused burrow and the overall probability that one of 75 individually recognized burrows would be reused in a given subsequent year was estimated as 26.4%. This indicates that between-year burrow reuse is a common behavior in the study colony which contrasts with findings from studies in other colonies. Furthermore, burrow re-occupation probability declined highly significantly with increasing age of the breeding wall. Statistical separation of within- and between-burrow effects of the age of the breeding wall revealed that a decline in re-occupation probability with individual burrow age was responsible for this and not a selective disappearance of burrows with high re-occupation probability over time. Limited duty cycles of individual burrows may be caused by accumulating detritus or decreasing stability with increasing burrow age. Alternatively, burrow fidelity may presuppose pair fidelity which may also explain the observed restricted burrow reuse duty cycles. A consequent next step would be to extend our within-colony approach to other colonies and compare the ecological circumstances under which bee-eaters reuse breeding burrows. PMID:26355473

  2. Determinants of between-year burrow re-occupation in a colony of the European bee-eater Merops apiaster.

    PubMed

    Brust, Vera; Bastian, Hans-Valentin; Bastian, Anita; Schmoll, Tim

    2015-08-01

    Re-occupation of existing nesting burrows in the European bee-eater Merops apiaster has only rarely - and if so mostly anecdotically - been documented in the literature record, although such behavior would substantially save time and energy. In this study, we quantify burrow re-occupation in a German colony over a period of eleven years and identify ecological variables determining reuse probability. Of 179 recorded broods, 54% took place in a reused burrow and the overall probability that one of 75 individually recognized burrows would be reused in a given subsequent year was estimated as 26.4%. This indicates that between-year burrow reuse is a common behavior in the study colony which contrasts with findings from studies in other colonies. Furthermore, burrow re-occupation probability declined highly significantly with increasing age of the breeding wall. Statistical separation of within- and between-burrow effects of the age of the breeding wall revealed that a decline in re-occupation probability with individual burrow age was responsible for this and not a selective disappearance of burrows with high re-occupation probability over time. Limited duty cycles of individual burrows may be caused by accumulating detritus or decreasing stability with increasing burrow age. Alternatively, burrow fidelity may presuppose pair fidelity which may also explain the observed restricted burrow reuse duty cycles. A consequent next step would be to extend our within-colony approach to other colonies and compare the ecological circumstances under which bee-eaters reuse breeding burrows. PMID:26355473

  3. Estimating Occupancy of Gopher Tortoise (Gorpherus polyphemus) Burrows in Coastal Scrub and Slash Pine Flatwoods

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Breininger, David R.; Schmalzer, Paul A.; Hinkle, C. Ross

    1991-01-01

    One hundred twelve plots were established in coastal scrub and slash pine flatwoods habitats on the John F. Kennedy Space Center (KSC) to evaluate relationships between the number of burrows and gopher tortoise (Gopherus polyphemus) density. All burrows were located within these plots and were classified according to tortoise activity. Depending on season, bucket trapping, a stick method, a gopher tortoise pulling device, and a camera system were used to estimate tortoise occupancy. Correction factors (% of burrows occupied) were calculated by season and habitat type. Our data suggest that less than 20% of the active and inactive burrows combined were occupied during seasons when gopher tortoises were active. Correction factors were higher in poorly-drained areas and lower in well-drained areas during the winter, when gopher tortoise activity was low. Correction factors differed from studies elsewhere, indicating that population estimates require correction factors specific to the site and season to accurately estimate population size.

  4. Documenting Western Burrowing Owl Reproduction and Activity Patterns Using Motion-Activated Cameras

    SciTech Connect

    Hall, Derek B.; Greger, Paul D.

    2014-08-01

    We used motion-activated cameras to monitor the reproduction and patterns of activity of the Burrowing Owl (Athene cunicularia) above ground at 45 burrows in south-central Nevada during the breeding seasons of 1999, 2000, 2001, and 2005. The 37 broods, encompassing 180 young, raised over the four years represented an average of 4.9 young per successful breeding pair. Young and adult owls were detected at the burrow entrance at all times of the day and night, but adults were detected more frequently during afternoon/early evening than were young. Motion-activated cameras require less effort to implement than other techniques. Limitations include photographing only a small percentage of owl activity at the burrow; not detecting the actual number of eggs, young, or number fledged; and not being able to track individual owls over time. Further work is also necessary to compare the accuracy of productivity estimates generated from motion-activated cameras with other techniques.

  5. Burrowing mayflies (Hexagenia) as indicators of ecosystem health at Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore, Michigan

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Edsall, Thomas A.; Phillips, William E.

    2004-01-01

    The present study describes the provisional use of burrowing mayflies (Hexagenia [Ephemeroptera: Ephemeridae]) as an indicator organism to assess and monitor the health of the Loon Lake and lower Platte River ecosystem within Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore, Michigan.

  6. Rodents new to the diet of the western burrowing owl(athene CUNICULARIA HYPUGAEA )

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Wiluford, D.L.; Woodin, M.C.; Skoruppa, M.K.; Hickman, G.C.

    2009-01-01

    The northern pygmy mouse (Baiomys taylori), fulvous harvest mouse (Reithrodontomys fulvescens), and Merriam's pocket mouse (Pemgnathus merriami) are new to the diet of the western burrowing owl (Athene cuniculana hypugaed). All three species were identified from remains in regurgitated pellets collected from roost sites of burrowing owls in southern Texas over a period of 4 winters. Together, northern pygmy mice and fulvous harvest mice represented 58% of mammals identified in 182 pellets regurgitated by western burrowing owls. Merriam's pocket mouse accounted for only 4% of identified mammalian prey. Frequency of occurrence in pellets was 16% for northern pygmv mice, 11% for fulvous harvest mice, and 3% for Merriam's pocket mice. The primary reason for absence of these species in previous studies of foods of western burrowing owls is that most were conducted in latitudes north of these southern-distributed species of mammals.

  7. MORE THAN JUST BAIT: BURROWING SHRIMP AS ECOSYSTEM ENGINEERS IN OREGON ESTUARIES - SEPTEMBER 2006

    EPA Science Inventory

    Burrowing shrimp may be most widely known as excellent fishing bait, but they also play important roles in estuaries of the Pacific Northwest. These shrimps strongly affect carbon and nutrient cycling, phytoplankton abundance, food web structure and dynamics, sediment stability,...

  8. Effects of Hypoxia on Animal Burrow Constraction and Consequent Effects on Sediment Redox Profiles (SETAC08)

    EPA Science Inventory

    We investigated the effects of mild hypoxia on the burrowing behavior of three marine species (the hard clam Mercenaria mercenaria, the polychaete worm Nereis virens, and the amphipod Leptocheirus plumulosus) and consequent effects on sediment redox profiles. Animals were introdu...

  9. Crab burrows as conduits for groundwater-surface water exchange in Bangladesh

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stahl, Mason O.; Tarek, M. H.; Yeo, Darren C. J.; Badruzzaman, A. B. M.; Harvey, Charles F.

    2014-12-01

    Groundwater recharge affects water budgets and groundwater quality on the deltas and floodplains of South and Southeast Asia. Rain and flooding rivers recharge groundwater during the monsoon; irrigated rice fields and surface water bodies recharge aquifers during the dry season. Groundwater throughout the region is severely contaminated by arsenic, and recent research suggests that quantifying and characterizing recharge is important to understand whether recharge flushes or mobilizes arsenic from aquifers. At a field site in Bangladesh, we found that burrows of terrestrial crabs short-circuit low-permeability surface sediments, providing the primary conduit for recharge. We combine field observations along with a model that couples isotope and water balances to quantify the effect of crab burrows on aquifer recharge. Given the wide distribution of burrowing crabs and the surficial geology, we suggest that crab burrows provide widespread conduits for groundwater recharge.

  10. Winter Ecology of the Western Burrowing Owl (Athene cunicularia hypugaea) in Southern Texas 1999-2004

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Woodin, Marc C.; Skoruppa, Mary K.; Hickman, Graham C.

    2007-01-01

    This study examines the winter ecology of the western burrowing owl (Athene cunicularia hypugaea) in five Texas counties surrounding Corpus Christi, in southern Texas. There is a substantial gap in information on the owl's life cycle during migration and non-breeding winter months; almost all previous research on western burrowing owls has been conducted during the breeding season. The western burrowing owl currently is federally threatened in Mexico, federally endangered in Canada, and in the United States is considered a National Bird of Conservation Concern by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. Topics investigated included status, effectiveness of public outreach, roost sites and use of culverts and artificial burrows, roost site fidelity, diet, contaminant burdens, body mass, and ectoparasites. Early ornithological reports and a museum egg set revealed that burrowing owls once bred in southern Texas and were common in winter; however, since the 1950's they have been reported in relatively low numbers and only during winter. In this study, public outreach increased western burrowing owl detections by 68 percent. Owls selected winter roost sites with small-diameter openings, including culverts less than or equal to 16 centimeters and artificial burrows of 15 centimeters, probably because the small diameters deterred mammalian predators. Owls showed strong roost site fidelity; 15 banded birds stayed at the same roost sites within a winter, and 8 returned to the same site the following winter. The winter diet was over 90 percent insects, with crickets the primary prey. Analyses of invertebrate prey and regurgitated pellets showed that residues of all but 3 of 28 carbamate and organophosphate pesticides were detected at least once, but all were below known lethal concentrations. Mean body mass of western burrowing owls was 168 grams and was highest in midwinter. Feather lice were detected in low numbers on a few owls, but no fleas or other ectoparasites were found.

  11. Mechanics and Energetics of Excavation by Burrowing Wolf Spiders, Geolycosa spp.

    PubMed Central

    Suter, Robert B.; Stratton, Gail E.; Miller, Patricia R.

    2011-01-01

    Burrowing wolf spiders, Geolycosa sp. (Araneae:Lycosidae), excavate vertical burrows and inhabit them throughout their lives or, in the case of males, until they mature and wander in search of mates. Three species: G. fatifera Kurata, G. missouriensis Banks, and G. rogersi Wallace were studied to understand how and at what expense the burrowing is accomplished. Normal and high-speed videography coupled with scanning electron microscopy revealed (a) that the convex surfaces of the two fangs, together, constitute the digging tool, (b) that boluses of soil are transported to the burrow entrance on the anterior surfaces of the chelicerae held there by the pedipalps, and (c) that each bolus is either incorporated into the growing turret or flung away, propelled by the forelegs. To elucidate the energetics of burrow construction, burrow volumes were calculated and then the costs associated with dislodging, elevating, and throwing the known volumes of soil were measured. A typical Geolycosa burrow, at a volume of 23.6 ± 2.0 ml and a depth of 13.2 ± 0.7 cm, required the removal of 918 boluses each weighing about 34 mg. The aggregate dislodging cost was close to 1.9 Joules in sand/sandy loam and 5.6 J in clayey subsoil, the work against gravity necessary to raise all of the boluses to the surface was about 0.13 J, and the aggregate cost of flinging the boluses was close to 0.014 J. Assuming that the ratio of external work to metabolic cost of external work is between 0.20 and 0.25 in spiders, the real cost of burrow construction would be between 8 J and 29 J, depending primarily on soil type. This is a small but not negligible cost when placed in the context of reproductive effort: a single Geolycosa egg, dozens to hundreds of which are produced in a clutch, contains about 10 J. PMID:21529154

  12. Balancing the competing requirements of saltatorial and fossorial specialisation: burrowing costs in the spinifex hopping mouse, Notomys alexis.

    PubMed

    White, Craig R; Matthews, Philip G D; Seymour, Roger S

    2006-06-01

    Semi-fossorial animals (burrowing surface foragers) need to balance the competing morphological requirements of terrestrial and burrowing locomotion. These species rarely show the same degree of claw, forelimb and pectoral girdle structural development that fully fossorial forms (burrowing subterranean foragers) do, but nevertheless invest considerable amounts of energy in burrow systems. The compromise between terrestrial and burrowing locomotion was investigated by measuring net costs of burrowing and pedestrian transport in the spinifex hopping mouse, Notomys alexis, a species that forages in open areas in arid environments and is adapted for saltatorial locomotion. The net cost of transport by burrowing of hopping mice was found to be more expensive than for specialised fossorial species, and burrows were estimated to represent an energy investment equivalent to the terrestrial locomotion expected to be incurred in 17-100 days. A phylogenetically independent-contrasts approach revealed that morphological specialisation for burrowing was associated with low maximum running speeds in fossorial mammals and, for non-fossorial rodents and marsupials, maximum running speed was positively correlated with an index of habitat structure that ranged from arboreal to open desert. The high terrestrial speeds attainable by this semi-fossorial species by saltatory locomotion apparently outweigh the energetic savings that would be associated with burrowing specialisation. PMID:16709912

  13. Recruitment by Brainstorming.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hankin, Joseph N.

    1982-01-01

    Reports on Westchester Community College's (WCC's) campuswide brainstorming meetings which prepared strategies, programs, and recommendations for realizing recruitment goals. Includes a draft of WCC's 1981 Marketing Recruitment Plan, which covers programs and instruction, services, admissions office and processes, publications, and…

  14. Burrowing by small polychaetes - mechanics, behavior and muscle structure of Capitella sp.

    PubMed

    Grill, Susann; Dorgan, Kelly M

    2015-05-15

    Worms of different sizes extend burrows through muddy sediments by fracture, applying dorso-ventral forces that are amplified at the crack tip. Smaller worms displace sediments less than larger worms and therefore are limited in how much force they can apply to burrow walls. We hypothesized that small worms would exhibit a transition in burrowing mechanics, specifically a lower limit in body size for the ability to burrow by fracture, corresponding with an ontogenetic transition in muscle morphology. Kinematics of burrowing in a mud analog, external morphology and muscle arrangement were examined in juveniles and adults of the small polychaete Capitella sp. We found that it moves by peristalsis, and no obvious differences were observed among worms of different sizes; even very small juveniles were able to burrow through a clear mud analog by fracture. Interestingly, we found that in addition to longitudinal and circular muscles needed for peristaltic movements, left- and right-handed helical muscles wrap around the thorax of worms of all sizes. We suggest that in small worms helical muscles may function to supplement forces generated by longitudinal muscles and to maintain hydrostatic pressure, enabling higher forces to be exerted on the crack wall. Further research is needed, however, to determine whether surficial sediments inhabited by small worms fail by fracture or plastically deform under forces of the magnitudes applied by Capitella sp. PMID:25827841

  15. Ventilatory and intrapulmonary chemoreceptor sensitivity to CO2 in the burrowing owl.

    PubMed

    Kilgore, D L; Faraci, F M; Fedde, M R

    1985-12-01

    We measured the ventilatory response of anesthetized, unidirectionally ventilated pigeons and burrowing owls to changes in intrapulmonary CO2 concentration and the static CO2 sensitivity of intrapulmonary chemoreceptors (IPC) in these species and the domestic goose. Compared with pigeons, burrowing owls showed a significantly reduced respiratory frequency and amplitude response to increases in FICO2 from 0.05 to 0.10, which corroborates similar findings in intact, awake individuals of the same species. The average static CO2 sensitivity of IPC in geese, pigeons, and burrowing owls, as reflected by the average slope of the linear regressions of receptor discharge frequency on ln(PICO2), was -7.96, -11.1 and -6.87 imp/sec . ln(PICO2), respectively. The sensitivities of individual receptors were normally distributed in geese and pigeons, but skewed in burrowing owls. Therefore, the median CO2 sensitivity [-5.50 imp/sec . ln(PICO2)] is a more appropriate measure of the typical CO2 sensitivity of IPC in burrowing owls. The static CO2 sensitivity of IPC in burrowing owls is the lowest reported for euthermic birds with a normal acid-base balance and may materially contribute to the blunted ventilatory response of these birds to the elevated CO2 levels they encounter in nature. PMID:3937191

  16. Recruitment and Training. Symposium.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    2002

    This document contains three papers from a symposium on recruitment and training. "College Choice: The State of Marketing and Effective Student Recruitment Strategies" (Fredrick Muyia Nafukho, Michael F. Burnett) reports on a study of the recruitment strategies used by Louisiana State University's admissions office and College of Agriculture that…

  17. Population models of burrowing mayfly recolonization in Western Lake Erie

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Madenjian, C.P.; Schloesser, D.W.; Krieger, K.A.

    1998-01-01

    Burrowing mayflies, Hexagenia spp. (H. limbata and H. rigida), began recolonizing western Lake Erie during the 1990s. Survey data for mayfly nymph densities indicated that the population experienced exponential growth between 1991 and 1997. To predict the time to full recovery of the mayfly population, we fitted logistic models, ranging in carrying capacity from 600 to 2000 nymphs/m2, to these survey data. Based on the fitted logistic curves, we forecast that the mayfly population in western Lake Erie would achieve full recovery between years 1998 and 2000, depending on the carrying capacity of the western basin. Additionally, we estimated the mortality rate of nymphs in western Lake Erie during 1994 and then applied an age-based matrix model to the mayfly population. The results of the matrix population modeling corroborated the exponential growth model application in that both methods yielded an estimate of the population growth rate, r, in excess of 0.8 yr-1. This was the first evidence that mayfly populations are capable of recolonizing large aquatic ecosystems at rates comparable with those observed in much smaller lentic ecosystems. Our model predictions should prove valuable to managers of power plant facilities along the western basin in planning for mayfly emergences and to managers of the yellow perch (Perca flavescens) fishery in western Lake Erie.

  18. High-resolution computed tomography reconstructions of invertebrate burrow systems

    PubMed Central

    Hale, Rachel; Boardman, Richard; Mavrogordato, Mark N.; Sinclair, Ian; Tolhurst, Trevor J.; Solan, Martin

    2015-01-01

    The architecture of biogenic structures can be highly influential in determining species contributions to major soil and sediment processes, but detailed 3-D characterisations are rare and descriptors of form and complexity are lacking. Here we provide replicate high-resolution micro-focus computed tomography (μ-CT) data for the complete burrow systems of three co-occurring, but functionally contrasting, sediment-dwelling inter-tidal invertebrates assembled alone, and in combination, in representative model aquaria. These data (≤2,000 raw image slices aquarium−1, isotropic voxel resolution, 81 μm) provide reference models that can be used for the development of novel structural analysis routines that will be of value within the fields of ecology, pedology, geomorphology, palaeobiology, ichnology and mechanical engineering. We also envisage opportunity for those investigating transport networks, vascular systems, plant rooting systems, neuron connectivity patterns, or those developing image analysis or statistics related to pattern or shape recognition. The dataset will allow investigators to develop or test novel methodology and ideas without the need to generate a complete three-dimensional computation of exemplar architecture. PMID:26396743

  19. High-resolution computed tomography reconstructions of invertebrate burrow systems.

    PubMed

    Hale, Rachel; Boardman, Richard; Mavrogordato, Mark N; Sinclair, Ian; Tolhurst, Trevor J; Solan, Martin

    2015-01-01

    The architecture of biogenic structures can be highly influential in determining species contributions to major soil and sediment processes, but detailed 3-D characterisations are rare and descriptors of form and complexity are lacking. Here we provide replicate high-resolution micro-focus computed tomography (μ-CT) data for the complete burrow systems of three co-occurring, but functionally contrasting, sediment-dwelling inter-tidal invertebrates assembled alone, and in combination, in representative model aquaria. These data (≤ 2,000 raw image slices aquarium(-1), isotropic voxel resolution, 81 μm) provide reference models that can be used for the development of novel structural analysis routines that will be of value within the fields of ecology, pedology, geomorphology, palaeobiology, ichnology and mechanical engineering. We also envisage opportunity for those investigating transport networks, vascular systems, plant rooting systems, neuron connectivity patterns, or those developing image analysis or statistics related to pattern or shape recognition. The dataset will allow investigators to develop or test novel methodology and ideas without the need to generate a complete three-dimensional computation of exemplar architecture. PMID:26396743

  20. Burrowing mayfly populations in Chequamegon Bay, Wisconsin: 2002 and 2012

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Brunk, Kristin M.; Vinson, Mark R.; Ogle, Derek H.; Evrard, Lori M.

    2014-01-01

    Burrowing mayflies (Ephemeroptera: Ephemeridae) are sensitive to pollution and have been used as environmental indicators in the Great Lakes. Hexagenia limbata and Ephemera simulans population abundance and biomass estimates from Chequamegon Bay, Lake Superior, were compared between the years 2002 and 2012 as well as inside and outside the Northern States Power Lakefront Superfund site. Mean abundance was similar and mean biomass of Ephemeridae was slightly less in 2012 than in 2002, most likely due to the occurrence of E. simulans in 2012, a smaller species not collected in 2002. In 2012, mean ephemerid abundance and biomass outside the Superfund site was significantly higher than inside the Superfund site. Biomass was higher in clay, clay with sand, and sand with clay substrates than in fine sand, coarse sand, or wood debris substrates. Substrate in the Superfund site was predominantly wood debris. Future monitoring of ephemerid populations in Chequamegon Bay, and particularly in the Superfund site as clean up begins, would be valuable to establish long-term population trends for these two species and potentially shed light on the habitat requirements of E. simulans, an understudied species in the Great Lakes.

  1. Multi-threading the generation of Burrows-Wheeler Alignment.

    PubMed

    Jo, H

    2016-01-01

    Along with recent progress in next-generation sequencing technology, it has become easier to process larger amounts of genome sequencing data at a lower cost. The most time-consuming step of next-generation sequencing data analysis involves the mapping of read data into a reference genome. Although the Burrows-Wheeler Alignment (BWA) tool is one of the most widely used open-source software tools for aligning read sequences, it still has a limitation in that it does not fully support a multi-thread mechanism during the alignment generation step. In this article, we propose a BWA-MT tool based on BWA that supports multi-thread mechanisms for processing alignment generation. To evaluate BWA-MT, we used an evaluation system equipped with 24 cores and 128 GB of memory. As workloads, we used the hg19 human genome reference sequence and sequences of various read sizes from the 1 to 40 M spots. In our evaluation, BWA-MT showed a maximum of 3.66-times better performance, and generated the same Sequence Alignment/Map result file as that of BWA. Although the ability to speed up the procedure might be dependent on computing resources, we confirmed that BWA-MT is a highly effective and fast alignment tool. PMID:27323088

  2. Use of mammal manure by nesting burrowing owls: a test of four functional hypotheses

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Smith, M.D.; Conway, C.J.

    2007-01-01

    Animals have evolved an impressive array of behavioural traits to avoid depredation. Olfactory camouflage of conspicuous odours is a strategy to avoid depredation that has been implicated only in a few species of birds. Burrowing owls, Athene cunicularia, routinely collect dried manure from mammals and scatter it in their nest chamber, in the tunnel leading to their nest and at the entrance to their nesting burrow. This unusual behaviour was thought to reduce nest depredation by concealing the scent of adults and juveniles, but a recent study suggests that manure functions to attract arthropod prey. However, burrowing owls routinely scatter other materials in the same way that they scatter manure, and this fact seems to be at odds with both of these hypotheses. Thus, we examined the function of this behaviour by testing four alternative hypotheses. We found no support for the widely cited olfactory-camouflage hypothesis (manure did not lower the probability of depredation), or for the mate-attraction hypothesis (males collected manure after, not before, pair formation). Predictions of the burrow-occupied hypothesis (manure indicates occupancy to conspecifics and thereby reduces agonistic interactions) were supported, but results were not statistically significant. Our results also supported several predictions of the prey-attraction hypothesis. Pitfall traps at sampling sites with manure collected more arthropod biomass (of taxa common in the diet of burrowing owls) than pitfall traps at sampling sites without manure. Scattering behaviour of burrowing owls appears to function to attract arthropod prey, but may also signal occupancy of a burrow to conspecifics. ?? 2006 The Association for the Study of Animal Behaviour.

  3. Orange carotenoid protein burrows into the phycobilisome to provide photoprotection.

    PubMed

    Harris, Dvir; Tal, Ofir; Jallet, Denis; Wilson, Adjélé; Kirilovsky, Diana; Adir, Noam

    2016-03-22

    In cyanobacteria, photoprotection from overexcitation of photochemical centers can be obtained by excitation energy dissipation at the level of the phycobilisome (PBS), the cyanobacterial antenna, induced by the orange carotenoid protein (OCP). A single photoactivated OCP bound to the core of the PBS affords almost total energy dissipation. The precise mechanism of OCP energy dissipation is yet to be fully determined, and one question is how the carotenoid can approach any core phycocyanobilin chromophore at a distance that can promote efficient energy quenching. We have performed intersubunit cross-linking using glutaraldehyde of the OCP and PBS followed by liquid chromatography coupled to tandem mass spectrometry (LC/MS-MS) to identify cross-linked residues. The only residues of the OCP that cross-link with the PBS are situated in the linker region, between the N- and C-terminal domains and a single C-terminal residue. These links have enabled us to construct a model of the site of OCP binding that differs from previous models. We suggest that the N-terminal domain of the OCP burrows tightly into the PBS while leaving the OCP C-terminal domain on the exterior of the complex. Further analysis shows that the position of the small core linker protein ApcC is shifted within the cylinder cavity, serving to stabilize the interaction between the OCP and the PBS. This is confirmed by a ΔApcC mutant. Penetration of the N-terminal domain can bring the OCP carotenoid to within 5-10 Å of core chromophores; however, alteration of the core structure may be the actual source of energy dissipation. PMID:26957606

  4. The influence of foraging mode and arid adaptation on the basal metabolic rates of burrowing mammals.

    PubMed

    White, Craig R

    2003-01-01

    Two competing but nonexclusive hypotheses to explain the reduced basal metabolic rate (BMR) of mammals that live and forage underground (fossorial species) are examined by comparing this group with burrowing mammals that forage on the surface (semifossorial species). These hypotheses suggest that the low BMR of fossorial species either compensates for the enormous energetic demands of subterranean foraging (the cost-of-burrowing hypothesis) or prevents overheating in closed burrow systems (the thermal-stress hypothesis). Because phylogentically informed allometric analysis showed that arid burrowing mammals have a significantly lower BMR than mesic ones, fossorial and semifossorial species were compared within these groups. The BMRs of mesic fossorial and semifossorial mammals could not be reliably distinguished, nor could the BMRs of large (>77 g) arid fossorial and semifossorial mammals. This finding favours the thermal-stress hypothesis, because the groups appear to have similar BMRs despite differences in foraging costs. However, in support of the cost-of-burrowing hypothesis, small (<77 g) arid fossorial mammals were found to have a significantly lower BMR than semifossorial mammals of the similar size. Given the high mass-specific metabolic rates of small animals, they are expected to be under severe energy and water stress in arid environments. Under such conditions, the greatly reduced BMR of small fossorial species may compensate for the enormous energetic demands of subterranean foraging. PMID:12695993

  5. Footprints in the sand: independent reduction of subdigital lamellae in the Namib–Kalahari burrowing geckos

    PubMed Central

    Lamb, Trip; Bauer, Aaron M

    2005-01-01

    Many desert organisms exhibit convergence, and certain physical factors such as windblown sands have generated remarkably similar ecomorphs across divergent lineages. The burrowing geckos Colopus, Chondrodactylus and Palmatogecko occupy dune ecosystems in the Namib and Kalahari deserts of southwest Africa. Considered closely related, they share several putative synapomorphies, including reduced subdigital pads (toe pads) and spinose digital scales. Though recognized as part of Africa's ecologically diverse Pachydactylus Group, the burrowing geckos' precise phylogenetic affinities remain elusive. Convergent pedal modification provides a tenable alternative explaining the geckos' derived terrestriality and adaptation to Namib and Kalahari sands. We generated a molecular phylogeny for the Pachydactylus Group to examine evolutionary relationships among the burrowing geckos and infer historical patterns of pedal character change. Bayesian and parsimony analyses revealed all three burrowing genera to be deeply nested within Pachydactylus, each genus belonging to a separate clade. Strong support for these distinct clades indicates ecomorphological adaptations for burrowing have evolved independently three times in the southern Pachydactylus Group. We argue that the physical properties of Namib and Kalahari sands played a principal role in selecting for pedal similarity. PMID:16618680

  6. Burrow plugging in the crab Uca uruguayensis and its synchronization with photoperiod and tides.

    PubMed

    de la Iglesia, H O; Rodríguez, E M; Dezi, R E

    1994-05-01

    Field observations and laboratory experiments were performed to analyze the burrow plugging behavior of U. uruguayensis and to analyze its relation to two environmental cycles: light-dark cycle and tides. Field observations showed that burrow plugging is a rhythmic behavior synchronized with both environmental cycles such that burrows are open during those periods of simultaneous light and low tide. Laboratory experiments suggested that the plugging rhythm is under endogenous circadian control, whereas its synchronization with the tidal cycle, particularly with periodic inundation, seems to be strongly exogenous, not showing clear circatidal components. It is proposed that burrow plugging is adaptive because it allows the animals to be within an air medium, more suitable for their respiration modality, during high tide and because it prevents burrow collapse. It is also proposed that both the endogenous circadian component and the lack of an endogenous circatidal component can also be explained on the basis of adaptive value, taking into account the regular temporal structure of the solar day and the irregular temporal structure of the tidal cycle. PMID:8022913

  7. Evidence for and geomorphologic consequences of a reptilian ecosystem engineer: The burrowing cascade initiated by the Gopher Tortoise

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kinlaw, A.; Grasmueck, M.

    2012-07-01

    Physical ecosystem engineers often make major, durable physical constructs that can provide living space for other species and can structure local animal communities over evolutionary time. In Florida, a medium sized chelonian, the Gopher Tortoise (Gopherus polyphemus) will excavate extensive subterranean chambers that can endure for long periods of time. The tortoise starts a 'burrowing cascade', by first excavating a larger burrow that may extend 10 m, which is then re-engineered by Florida Mice (Podomys floridanus) and other rodents that dig smaller side-burrows and pockets. This sequence is often followed by an invertebrate, the camel cricket (Ceuthophilus labibuli) which is reported to excavate even smaller chambers. Our first aim was to quantify the zoogeomorphic impact of this burrowing cascade by measuring the amount of soil excavated in a large sample of burrows in two communities. Secondly, we hypothesized that the high biodiversity reported for these structures might be related to the quasi-fractal nature of the geometry, following the work of Frontier (1987). To visualize this underground geometry, we used high-resolution 3D Ground Penetrating Radar (GPR), which provided images and insights previously unobtainable using excavations or 2D GPR. Our images verified that the active tortoise burrow had a spiraling shape, but also showed splits in the larger burrow apparently dug by tortoises. For the first time, the smaller Florida Mouse burrows were imaged, showing side loops that exit and re-renter the tortoise burrow. This study also presents new information by making the discovery of numerous remnants of past tortoise burrows underground in the sampling grid surrounding the active burrow. Our third aim was to interpret our field results with previous ecological field studies to evaluate the strength of evidence that this species ranks as an ecosystem engineer.

  8. Breeding-season food habits of burrowing owls (Athene cunicularia) in southwestern Dominican Republic

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Wiley, J.W.

    1998-01-01

    Diet data from 20 Burrowing Owl (Athene cunicularia) nests were collected in southwestern Dominican Republic in 1976, 1982, and 1996. Invertebrates (53.3%) comprised the most numerous prey items (N = 396) delivered to nests by adult owls, but vertebrates (46.7%) were much better represented than in other studies of Burrowing Owl diet. Among vertebrates, birds (28.3% of all items) and reptiles (14.9%) were most important, whereas mammals (1.0%) and amphibians (2.5%) were less commonly delivered to nests. Vertebrates, however, comprised more than twice (69.2%) of the total biomass as invertebrates (30.8%), with birds (50.4%) and reptiles (12.8%) the most important of the vertebrate prey classes. A positive relationship was observed between bird species abundance and number of individuals taken as prey by Burrowing Owls.

  9. The soil-dwelling earthworm Allolobophora chlorotica modifies its burrowing behaviour in response to carbendazim applications.

    PubMed

    Ellis, Sian R; Hodson, Mark E; Wege, Philip

    2010-09-01

    Carbendazim-amended soil was placed above or below unamended soil. Control tests comprised two layers of unamended soil. Allolobophora chlorotica earthworms were added to either the upper or the unamended soil. After 72 h vertical distributions of earthworms were compared between control and carbendazim-amended experiments. Earthworm distributions in the carbendazim-amended test containers differed significantly from the 'normal' distribution observed in the control tests. In the majority of the experiments, earthworms significantly altered their burrowing behaviour to avoid carbendazim. However, when earthworms were added to an upper layer of carbendazim-amended soil they remained in this layer. This non-avoidance is attributed to (1) the earthworms' inability to sense the lower layer of unamended soil and (2) the toxic effect of carbendazim inhibiting burrowing. Earthworms modified their burrowing behaviour in response to carbendazim in the soil. This may explain anomalous results observed in pesticide field trials when carbendazim is used as a control substance. PMID:20580088

  10. An Analysis of Spatial Clustering and Implications for Wildlife Management: A Burrowing Owl Example

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fisher, Joshua B.; Trulio, Lynne A.; Biging, Gregory S.; Chromczak, Debra

    2007-03-01

    Analysis tools that combine large spatial and temporal scales are necessary for efficient management of wildlife species, such as the burrowing owl ( Athene cunicularia). We assessed the ability of Ripley’s K-function analysis integrated into a geographic information system (GIS) to determine changes in burrowing owl nest clustering over two years at NASA Ames Research Center. Specifically, we used these tools to detect changes in spatial and temporal nest clustering before, during, and after conducting management by mowing to maintain low vegetation height at nest burrows. We found that the scale and timing of owl nest clustering matched the scale and timing of our conservation management actions over a short time frame. While this study could not determine a causal link between mowing and nest clustering, we did find that Ripley’s K and GIS were effective in detecting owl nest clustering and show promise for future conservation uses.

  11. An analysis of spatial clustering and implications for wildlife management: a burrowing owl example.

    PubMed

    Fisher, Joshua B; Trulio, Lynne A; Biging, Gregory S; Chromczak, Debra

    2007-03-01

    Analysis tools that combine large spatial and temporal scales are necessary for efficient management of wildlife species, such as the burrowing owl (Athene cunicularia). We assessed the ability of Ripley's K-function analysis integrated into a geographic information system (GIS) to determine changes in burrowing owl nest clustering over two years at NASA Ames Research Center. Specifically, we used these tools to detect changes in spatial and temporal nest clustering before, during, and after conducting management by mowing to maintain low vegetation height at nest burrows. We found that the scale and timing of owl nest clustering matched the scale and timing of our conservation management actions over a short time frame. While this study could not determine a causal link between mowing and nest clustering, we did find that Ripley's K and GIS were effective in detecting owl nest clustering and show promise for future conservation uses. PMID:17253092

  12. Habitat requirements and burrowing depths of rodents in relation to shallow waste burial sites

    SciTech Connect

    Gano, K.A.; States, J.B.

    1982-05-01

    The purpose of this paper is to provide a review of the literature and summarize information on factors affecting habitat selection and maximum recorded burrowing depths for representative small mammals that we consider most likely to inhibit waste burial sites in arid and semi-arid regions of the West. The information is intended for waste management designers who need to know what to expect from small mammals that may be present at a particular site. Waste repositories oculd be designed to exclude the deep burrowing rodents of a region by creating an unattractive habitat over the waste. Summaries are given for habitat requirements of each group along with generalized modifications that could be employed to deter habitation. Representatives from the major groups considered to be deep burrowers are discussed. Further, detailed information about a particular species can be obtained from the references cited.

  13. Recruiting Minority Students.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Reed, Bobette P.; Dandridge, William L.

    To help improve private schools' recruitment of minority students, this handbook discusses where and how to begin, recruitment strategies, applicant assessment, and the need for in-school support systems for minority students. The authors stress that each school should begin by analyzing its own objectives, attitudes, and admission program.…

  14. Recruiting New Teachers.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Camp, William G.; And Others

    1997-01-01

    This special theme issue includes: "How Can We Solve the Teacher Shortage?" (Camp); "A Student's Perspective" (Swafford); "Recruitment" (Dyer, Andreasen); "Top 10 Reasons to Become an Agriculture Teacher and FFA Advisor" (Bembardt, McMaben); "Supply and Demand of Agriculture Teachers since 1965" (Brown); "Recruitment and Retention of Agricultural…

  15. Identification and Recruitment Guide.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    North Carolina State Dept. of Public Instruction, Raleigh. Div. of Compensatory Education.

    The guide contains basic information to assist local recruiters for the North Carolina migrant education project in the identification and recruitment of children eligible for the project. Eleven terms pertaining to eligibility requirements are defined, and eligibility is explained. The guide suggests and explains information sources available to…

  16. Belted kingfishers: Under surveillance and sampled in the privacy of their own burrow

    SciTech Connect

    Baron, L.A.; Ashwood, T.L.

    1995-12-31

    The belted kingfisher, a common piscivore of the Oak Ridge Reservation (ORR), bioaccumulates contaminants from consumption of aquatic prey. Three kingfisher carcasses found near contaminated streams on the ORR were analyzed. Mercury, cadmium, and selenium bioaccumulated within the liver, kidney, and feathers. Additionally, PCB-1254 accumulated in muscle and lipid tissue, while Cesium-137 accumulated within the muscle and whole body. These contaminant levels have been shown to produce a variety of toxicological effects (i.e., reproductive impairment, central nervous system dysfunction) within other species of birds. In addition to use of this data for ecological risk assessment, kingfishers can also be monitored as a viable bioindicator species reflecting environmental contaminant levels over time. However, current sampling methods of burrow excavation or the use of mist nets can be detrimental to the reproductive success of the birds. The authors present a method for obtaining adequate samples of feathers and other remnants (i.e., egg shells, dried regurgitant) found in the burrow during or following the nesting season. The collection of samples following surveillance of the burrow and its contents was performed with the use of a 15 ft-long flexible, portable probe containing a video camera. Once sighted with the probe, contents of the burrow were collected by insertion of an additional tube attached to a hand held vacuum cleaner (Dirt Devil{reg_sign}). Feathers collected from a nest at an uncontaminated site contained selenium, lead and mercury. Cesium-137 was found in an egg shell collected from a nest at a radiologically contaminated site. Close-up photos of a kingfisher mother incubating her eggs and nestlings within two burrows will also be shown. This surveillance and sampling technique can also be used for monitoring other burrowing terrestrial species.

  17. DENSITY-DEPENDENT IMPACTS OF BIOIRRIGATION BY THE BURROWING SHRIMP UPOGEBIA PUGETTENSIS ON BENTHIC FLUXES AND POREWATER SOLUTE DISTRIBUTIONS IN PACIFIC NORTHWEST ESTUARIES

    EPA Science Inventory

    Burrowing thalassinid shrimp are major ecosystem engineering species of Pacific estuaries and can structure the physical, chemical, and biotic properties of sediments. Feeding and burrow irrigation by benthic organisms can increase the remineralization rates of organic material (...

  18. Behavioural and Physiological Implications of a Burrow-dwelling Lifestyle for Two Species of Upogebiid Mud-shrimp (Crustacea: Thalassinidea)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Astall, C. M.; Taylor, A. C.; Atkinson, R. J. A.

    1997-02-01

    Upogebia stellataand U. deltaura(Crustacea: Thalassinidea) construct burrows in nearshore sediments in U.K. waters. Burrow structure is similar in both species; the basic burrow consisting of a two-opening, U-shaped section with a vertical shaft descending from the mid-point of the U. This structure may be variously elaborated. Burrow cross-section is circular, dilations allow turning by somersaulting and surface openings are often constricted. Conditions within the burrows are usually hypoxic and hypercapnic. Burrow water PO 2in the parts normally occupied by the mud-shrimp was between 80-110 Torr, but was much lower (10-45 Torr) in the deepest, poorly-irrigated parts. Both species irrigate their burrows by episodes of pleopod beating of variable duration (mean=8·5±3·5 min and 2·8±0·5 min for U. deltauraand U. stellata, respectively), which draws oxygenated water into the burrow and also particulate food for suspension feeding. When exposed to hypoxia, U. deltauraand U. stellatawere able to maintain their rates of oxygen consumption approximately constant over a wide range of PO 2( Pc=30-50 Torr). Under these conditions, there was a pronounced increase in scaphognathite beat rate but heart rate remained relatively constant. Below the Pc, however, both rates declined.

  19. Ontogenetic habitat shift, population growth, and burrowing behavior of the Indo-Pacific beach star, Archaster typicus (Echinodermata; Asteroidea).

    PubMed

    Bos, Arthur R; Gumanao, Girley S; van Katwijk, Marieke M; Mueller, Benjamin; Saceda, Marjho M; Tejada, Rosie Lynn P

    2011-01-01

    Archaster typicus, a common sea star in Indo-Pacific regions, has been a target for the ornamental trade, even though little is known about its population biology. Spatial and temporal patterns of abundance and size structure of A. typicus were studied in the Davao Gulf, the Philippines (125°42.7'E, 7°0.6'N), from February 2008 to December 2009. Specimens of A. typicus were associated with intertidal mangrove prop roots, seagrass meadows, sandy beaches, and shoals. Among prop roots, specimens were significantly smaller and had highest densities (131 ind. m(-2)) between November and March. High organic matter in sediment and a relatively low predation rate seemed to support juvenile life among mangroves. Size and density analyses provided evidence that individuals gradually move to seagrass, sandy habitats, and shoals as they age. Specimens were significantly larger at a shoal (maximum radius R = 81 mm). New recruits were found between August and November in both 2008 and 2009. Timing of recruitment and population size frequencies confirmed a seasonal reproductive cycle. Juveniles had relatively high growth rates (2-7 mm month(-1)) and may reach an R of 20-25 mm after 1 year. Growth rates of larger specimens (R > 30 mm) were generally <2 mm month(-1). The activity pattern of A. typicus was related to the tidal phase and not to time of day: Specimens moved over the sediment surface during low tides and were burrowed during high tides possibly avoiding predation. This is one of the first studies to document an ontogenetic habitat shift for sea stars and provides new biological information as a basis for management of harvested A. typicus populations. PMID:24391259

  20. Burrows of the semi-terrestrial crab Ucides cordatus enhance CO2 release in a North Brazilian mangrove forest.

    PubMed

    Pülmanns, Nathalie; Diele, Karen; Mehlig, Ulf; Nordhaus, Inga

    2014-01-01

    Ucides cordatus is an abundant mangrove crab in Brazil constructing burrows of up to 2 m depth. Sediment around burrows may oxidize during low tides. This increase in sediment-air contact area may enhance carbon degradation processes. We hypothesized that 1) the sediment CO2 efflux rate is greater with burrows than without and 2) the reduction potential in radial profiles in the sediment surrounding the burrows decreases gradually, until approximating non-bioturbated conditions. Sampling was conducted during the North Brazilian wet season at neap tides. CO2 efflux rates of inhabited burrows and plain sediment were measured with a CO2/H2O gas analyzer connected to a respiration chamber. Sediment redox potential, pH and temperature were measured in the sediment surrounding the burrows at horizontal distances of 2, 5, 8 and 15 cm at four sediment depths (1, 10, 30 and 50 cm) and rH values were calculated. Sediment cores (50 cm length) were taken to measure the same parameters for plain sediment. CO2 efflux rates of plain sediment and individual crab burrows with entrance diameters of 7 cm were 0.7-1.3 µmol m(-2) s(-1) and 0.2-0.4 µmol burrows(-1) s(-1), respectively. CO2 released from a Rhizophora mangle dominated forest with an average of 1.7 U. cordatus burrows(-1) m(-2) yielded 1.0-1.7 µmol m(-2) s(-1), depending on the month and burrow entrance diameter. Laboratory experiments revealed that 20-60% of the CO2 released by burrows originated from crab respiration. Temporal changes in the reduction potential in the sediment surrounding the burrows did not influence the CO2 release from burrows. More oxidized conditions of plain sediment over time may explain the increase in CO2 release until the end of the wet season. CO2 released by U. cordatus and their burrows may be a significant pathway of CO2 export from mangrove sediments and should be considered in mangrove carbon budget estimates. PMID:25313661

  1. Seagrass as the main food source of Neaxius acanthus (Thalassinidea: Strahlaxiidae), its burrow associates, and of Corallianassa coutierei (Thalassinidea: Callianassidae)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kneer, Dominik; Asmus, Harald; Vonk, Jan Arie

    2008-09-01

    Burrows of the thalassinidean shrimps Neaxius acanthus and Corallianassa coutierei are striking aspects in tropical seagrass beds of the Spermonde Archipelago, Indonesia. Burrow construction, behaviour, burrow type and associated commensal community were investigated to clarify the ecological role and food requirements of these shrimps and their commensals. Gut content analysis and stable-isotope data were used to unravel the food sources and the trophic interactions among the commensal community. Individuals of Neaxius acanthus were caught on Bone Batang Island. In narrow aquaria filled with sediment they constructed burrows resembling those found in the field. During burrow construction and maintenance only little sediment was brought to the surface, most was sorted and compacted to create a distinct lining. Maintenance work by single shrimps typically took about 5 min, after which the shrimp walked up to the entrance and rested for a similar period of time. There were no differences in behaviour between day and night. Intrasexual encounters inside the burrow were characterised by a high level of aggression and all resulted in one participant being driven out of the burrow. Intersexual encounters led to coexistence with both animals taking turns in burrow maintenance and guarding the entrance. Offered seagrass leaves were pulled underground, cut into pieces and eventually integrated into the lining. Burrows of Corallianassa coutierei resembled a deep U-shape. Chambers branching off halfway down and at the deepest point contained seagrass fragments. All steep parts of the burrow were lined similar to burrows of N. acanthus. No commensals were found associated with Corallianassa coutierei. However, burrows of Neaxius acanthus in the field typically contained a pair of shrimps, up to 8 individuals of the commensal bivalve Barrimysia cumingii and large numbers of gammarid amphipods. Other animals found associated with the burrow were the goby Austrolethops wardi, a

  2. Nelson's big horn sheep (Ovis canadensis nelsoni) trample Agassiz's desert tortoise (Gopherus agassizii) burrow at a California wind energy facility

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Agha, Mickey; Delaney, David F.; Lovich, Jeffrey E.; Briggs, Jessica; Austin, Meaghan; Price, Steven J.

    2015-01-01

    Research on interactions between Agassiz's desert tortoises (Gopherus agassizii) and ungulates has focused exclusively on the effects of livestock grazing on tortoises and their habitat (Oldemeyer, 1994). For example, during a 1980 study in San Bernardino County, California, 164 desert tortoise burrows were assessed for vulnerability to trampling by domestic sheep (Ovis aries). Herds of grazing sheep damaged 10% and destroyed 4% of the burrows (Nicholson and Humphreys 1981). In addition, a juvenile desert tortoise was trapped and an adult male was blocked from entering a burrow due to trampling by domestic sheep. Another study found that domestic cattle (Bos taurus) trampled active desert tortoise burrows and vegetation surrounding burrows (Avery and Neibergs 1997). Trampling also has negative impacts on diversity of vegetation and intershrub soil crusts in the desert southwest (Webb and Stielstra 1979). Trampling of important food plants and overgrazing has the potential to create competition between desert tortoises and domestic livestock (Berry 1978; Coombs 1979; Webb and Stielstra 1979).

  3. Recruitment in Radiotherapy

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Deeley, T. J.; And Others

    1976-01-01

    The Faculty Board of Radiotherapy and Oncology of the Royal College of Radiobiologists surveyed the factors thought to influence recruitment into the specialty. Possible factors listed in replies of 36 questionnaires are offered. (LBH)

  4. Strong population genetic structure and larval dispersal capability of the burrowing ghost shrimp (Neotrypaea californiensis)

    EPA Science Inventory

    The burrowing ghost shrimp, Neotrypaea californiensis, is a vital member of the estuarine benthic community. Dense populations of shrimp are found in the major estuaries of Washington and Oregon. Our study determines the genetic structure of shrimp populations in order to gain ...

  5. THE EFFECT OF MIREX ON THE BURROWING ACTIVITY OF THE LUGWORM ('ARENICOLA CRISTATA')

    EPA Science Inventory

    An inexpensive bioassay system was developed to estimate pollutant effects on a benthic animal. Mirex, a fire ant toxicant, was taken into the substrate by the burrowing and feeding activity of the lugworm, Arenicola cristata, and significantly affected this activity. Mirex was p...

  6. Living in a ``stethoscope'': burrow-acoustics promote auditory specializations in subterranean rodents

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lange, Simone; Burda, Hynek; Wegner, Regina E.; Dammann, Philip; Begall, Sabine; Kawalika, Mathias

    2007-02-01

    Subterranean mammals rely to a great extent on audition for communication and to be alerted to danger. The only hitherto published report on burrow acoustics revealed that in tunnels of blind mole-rats ( Spalax ehrenbergi), airborne sounds of 440 Hz propagated best whereas lower and higher frequencies were effectively attenuated. Morpho-functional analyses classify the ear of subterranean mammals as a low-sensitivity and low-frequency device. Concordantly, hearing is characterized by low sensitivity and a restricted frequency range tuned to low frequencies (0.5-4 kHz). Some authors considered the restricted hearing in subterranean mammals vestigial and degenerate due to under-stimulation. In contrast to this view stand a rich (mostly low-frequency) vocal repertoire and progressive structural specializations of the middle and inner ear. Thus, other authors considered these hearing characteristics adaptive. To test the hypothesis that acoustical environment in burrows of different species of subterranean mammals is similar, we measured sound attenuation in burrows of Fukomys mole-rats (formerly known as Cryptomys, cf. Kock et al. 2006) of two differently sized species at different locations in Zambia. We show that in these burrows, low-frequency sounds (200-800 Hz) are not only least attenuated but also their amplitude may be amplified like in a stethoscope (up to two times over 1 m). We suggest that hearing sensitivity has decreased during evolution of subterranean mammals to avoid over-stimulation of the ear in their natural environment.

  7. [Suicidal burrowing behavior--a special kind of the "hide-and-die-syndrome"].

    PubMed

    Hartwig, Sven; Tsokos, Michael

    2007-01-01

    When the situation at a death scene is unusual, this may suggest the involvement of another person. On the other hand, one also has to consider the possibility of a conscious or unconscious behavior in connection with extreme stress situations or suicidal acts. The forensic findings and criminalistic reconstruction of two cases of suicidal burrowing behavior are presented and discussed. PMID:18260568

  8. The Potential Use of Electricity to Control Burrowing Shrimp in Oyster Aquaculture Beds

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Thalassinid shrimp cause significant problems for oyster aquaculture in the Pacific Northwest (USA) where oysters succumb to the physical disruption of the sediment by the burrowing activity of these animals. While electrofishing is a commonly used technique to capture fish and some invertebrates i...

  9. SEASONAL FORAGING BY CHANNEL CATFISH ON TERRESTRIALLY BURROWING CRAYFISH IN A FLOODPLAIN-RIVER ECOSYSTEM

    EPA Science Inventory

    The seasonal use of terrestrially burrowing crayfish as a food item by channel catfish Ictalurus punctatus was studied in channelized and non-channelized sections of the Yockanookany River (Mississippi, USA). During seasonal inundation of the floodplains, the crayfish occupied o...

  10. Gopherus agassizii (desert tortoise) and Crotalus ruber (red diamond rattlesnake). Burrow co-occupancy

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Lovich, Jeffrey E.

    2011-01-01

    I observed an adult Desert Tortoise and an adult Red Diamond Rattlesnake (sexes unknown) in a shallow tortoise burrow on 6 January 1997 at a wind energy generation facility near Palm Springs, Riverside Co., California, USA (33.9599°N, 116.6613°W).

  11. Complete Genome Sequence of a Bohle iridovirus Isolate from Ornate Burrowing Frogs (Limnodynastes ornatus) in Australia.

    PubMed

    Hick, Paul M; Subramaniam, Kuttichantran; Thompson, Patrick; Whittington, Richard J; Waltzek, Thomas B

    2016-01-01

    Bohle iridovirus (BIV) is a species within the genus Ranavirus, family Iridoviridae, first isolated from the ornate burrowing frog Limnodynastes ornatus in Australia. The BIV genome confirms it is closely related to isolates from boreal toad Anaxyrus boreas and leaf-tailed gecko Uroplatus fimbriatus within the United States and Germany, respectively. PMID:27540051

  12. Complete Genome Sequence of a Bohle iridovirus Isolate from Ornate Burrowing Frogs (Limnodynastes ornatus) in Australia

    PubMed Central

    Thompson, Patrick; Whittington, Richard J.; Waltzek, Thomas B.

    2016-01-01

    Bohle iridovirus (BIV) is a species within the genus Ranavirus, family Iridoviridae, first isolated from the ornate burrowing frog Limnodynastes ornatus in Australia. The BIV genome confirms it is closely related to isolates from boreal toad Anaxyrus boreas and leaf-tailed gecko Uroplatus fimbriatus within the United States and Germany, respectively. PMID:27540051

  13. The influence of small-mammal burrowing activity on water storage at the Hanford Site

    SciTech Connect

    Landeen, D.S.

    1994-12-31

    This paper summarizes the activities that were conducted in support of the long-term surface barrier development program by Westinghouse Hanford Company to determine the degree that small-mammal burrow systems affect the loss or retention of water in the soils at the Hanford Site in Washington state. An animal intrusion lysimeter facility was constructed, consisting of two outer boxes buried at grade, which served as receptacles for six animal intrusion lysimeters. Small burrowing animals common the Hanford Site were introduced over a 3- to 4-month period. Supplemental precipitation was added monthly to three of the lysimeters with a rainfall simulator (rainulator). Information collected from the five tests indicated that (1) during summer months, water was lost in all the lysimeters, including the supplemental precipitation added with the rainulator; and (2) during winter months, all lysimeters gained water. The data indicate little difference in the amount of water stored between control and animal lysimeters. The overall water loss was attributed to surface evaporation, a process that occurred equally in control and treatment lysimeters. Other causes of water loss are a result of (1) constant soil turnover and subsequent drying, and (2) burrow ventilation effects. This suggests that burrow systems will not contribute to any significant water storage at depth and, in fact, may enhance the removal of water from the soil.

  14. Sedimentary organic matter distributions, burrowing activity, and biogeochemical cycling: Natural patterns and experimental artifacts

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Michaud, Emma; Aller, Robert, C.; Stora, Georges

    2010-11-01

    The coupling between biogenic reworking activity and reactive organic matter patterns within deposits is poorly understood and often ignored. In this study, we examined how common experimental treatments of sediment affect the burrowing behavior of the polychaete Nephtys incisa and how these effects may interact with reactive organic matter distributions to alter diagenetic transport - reaction balances. Sediment and animals were recovered from a subtidal site in central Long Island Sound, USA. The upper 15 cm of the sediment was sectioned into sub-intervals, and each interval separately sieved and homogenized. Three initial distributions of sediment and organic substrate reactivity were setup in a series of microcosms: (1) a reconstituted natural pattern with surface-derived sediment overlying sediment obtained from progressively deeper material to a depth of 15 cm (Natural); (2) a 15 cm thick sediment layer composed only of surface-derived sediment (Rich); and (3) a 15 cm thick layer composed of uniformally mixed sediment from the original 15 cm sediment profile (Averaged). The two last treatments are comparable to that used in microcosms in many previous studies of bioturbation and interspecific functional interaction experiments. Sediment grain size distributions were 97.5% silt-clay and showed no depth dependent patterns. Sediment porosity gradients were slightly altered by the treatments. Nepthys were reintroduced and aquariums were X-rayed regularly over 5 months to visualize and quantify spatial and temporal dynamics of burrows. The burrowing behaviour of adult populations having similar total biovolume, biomass, abundance, and individual sizes differed substantially as a function of treatment. Burrows in sediment with natural property gradients were much shallower and less dense than those in microcosms with altered gradients. The burrow volume/biovolume ratio was also lower in the substrate with natural organic reactivity gradients. Variation in food

  15. The effect of mayfly (Hexagenia spp.) burrowing activity on sediment oxygen demand in western Lake Erie

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Edwards, William J.; Soster, Frederick M.; Matisoff, Gerald; Schloesser, Donald W.

    2009-01-01

    Previous studies support the hypothesis that large numbers of infaunal burrow-irrigating organisms in the western basin of Lake Erie may increase significantly the sediment oxygen demand, thus enhancing the rate of hypolimnetic oxygen depletion. We conducted laboratory experiments to quantify burrow oxygen dynamics and increased oxygen demand resulting from burrow irrigation using two different year classes of Hexagenia spp. nymphs from western Lake Erie during summer, 2006. Using oxygen microelectrodes and hot film anemometry, we simultaneously determined oxygen concentrations and burrow water flow velocities. Burrow oxygen depletion rates ranged from 21.7 mg/nymph/mo for 15 mm nymphs at 23 °C to 240.7 mg/nymph/mo for 23 mm nymphs at 13 °C. Sealed microcosm experiments demonstrated that mayflies increase the rate of oxygen depletion by 2-5 times that of controls, depending on size of nymph and water temperature, with colder waters having greater impact. At natural population densities, nymph pumping activity increased total sediment oxygen demand 0.3-2.5 times compared to sediments with no mayflies and accounted for 22-71% of the total sediment oxygen demand. Extrapolating laboratory results to the natural system suggest that Hexagenia spp. populations may exert a significant control on oxygen depletion during intermittent stratification. This finding may help explain some of the fluctuations in Hexagenia spp. population densities in western Lake Erie and suggests that mayflies, by causing their own population collapse irrespective of other environmental conditions, may need longer term averages when used as a bio-indicator of the success of pollution-abatement programs in western Lake Erie and possibly throughout the Great Lakes.

  16. Burrow limitations and group living in the communally rearing rodent, Octodon degus

    PubMed Central

    Ebensperger, Luis A.; Chesh, Adrian S.; Castro, Rodrigo A.; Tolhuysen, Liliana Ortiz; Quirici, Verónica; Burger, Joseph Robert; Sobrero, Raúl; Hayes, Loren D.

    2012-01-01

    Group living is thought to evolve whenever individuals attain a net fitness advantage due to reduced predation risk or enhanced foraging efficiency, but also when individuals are forced to remain in groups, which often occurs during high-density conditions due to limitations of critical resources for independent breeding. The influence of ecological limitations on sociality has been studied little in species in which reproduction is more evenly shared among group members. Previous studies in the caviomorph rodent Octodon degus (a New World hystricognath) revealed no evidence that group living confers an advantage and suggest that burrow limitations influence formation of social groups. Our objective was to examine the relevance of ecological limitations on sociality in these rodents. Our 4-year study revealed no association between degu density and use of burrow systems. The frequency with which burrow systems were used by degus was not related to the quality of these structures; only in 1 of the 4 years did the frequency of burrow use decrease with decreasing abundance of food. Neither the number of females per group nor total group size (related measures of degu sociality) changed with yearly density of degus. Although the number of males within social groups was lower in 2008, this variation was not related clearly to varying density. The percentage of females in social groups that bred was close to 99% and did not change across years of varying density. Our results suggest that sociality in degus is not the consequence of burrow limitations during breeding. Whether habitat limitations contribute to variation in vertebrate social systems is discussed. PMID:22328789

  17. Characterization of specificity of bacterial community structure within the burrow environment of the marine polychaete Hediste (Nereis) diversicolor.

    PubMed

    Pischedda, Laura; Militon, Cécile; Gilbert, Franck; Cuny, Philippe

    2011-12-01

    Bioturbation is known to stimulate microbial communities, especially in macrofaunal burrows where the abundance and activities of bacteria are increased. Until now, these microbial communities have been poorly characterized and an important ecological question remains: do burrow walls harbor similar or specific communities compared with anoxic and surface sediments? The bacterial community structure of coastal sediments inhabited by the polychaete worm Hediste diversicolor was investigated. Surface, burrow wall and anoxic sediments were collected at the Carteau beach (Gulf of Fos, Mediterranean Sea). Bacterial diversity was determined by analyzing small subunit ribosomal RNA (16S rRNA) sequences from three clone libraries (168, 179 and 129 sequences for the surface, burrow wall and anoxic sediments, respectively). Libraries revealed 306 different operational taxonomic units (OTUs) belonging to at least 15 bacterial phyla. Bioinformatic analyses and comparisons between the three clone libraries showed that the burrow walls harbored a specific bacterial community structure which differed from the surface and anoxic environments. More similarities were nevertheless found with the surface assemblage. Inside the burrow walls, the bacterial community was characterized by high biodiversity, which probably results from the biogeochemical heterogeneity of the burrow system. PMID:21946148

  18. Spatial and Temporal Oxygen Dynamics in Macrofaunal Burrows in Sediments: A Review of Analytical Tools and Observational Evidence

    PubMed Central

    Satoh, Hisashi; Okabe, Satoshi

    2013-01-01

    The availability of benthic O2 plays a crucial role in benthic microbial communities and regulates many important biogeochemical processes. Burrowing activities of macrobenthos in the sediment significantly affect O2 distribution and its spatial and temporal dynamics in burrows, followed by alterations of sediment microbiology. Consequently, numerous research groups have investigated O2 dynamics in macrofaunal burrows. The introduction of powerful tools, such as microsensors and planar optodes, to sediment analysis has greatly enhanced our ability to measure O2 dynamics in burrows at high spatial and temporal resolution with minimal disturbance of the physical structure of the sediment. In this review, we summarize recent studies of O2-concentration measurements in burrows with O2 microsensors and O2 planar optodes. This manuscript mainly focuses on the fundamentals of O2 microsensors and O2 planar optodes, and their application in the direct measurement of the spatial and temporal dynamics of O2 concentrations in burrows, which have not previously been reviewed, and will be a useful supplement to recent literature reviews on O2 dynamics in macrofaunal burrows. PMID:23594972

  19. Evaluation of insecticide impregnated baits for control of mosquito larvae in land crab burrows on French Polynesian atolls.

    PubMed

    Lardeux, Frederic; Sechan, Yves; Faaruia, Marc

    2002-07-01

    Land crab burrows are larval mosquito habitats of major significance in the Pacific region. They are constituted by a sinuous tunnel leading to a chamber in contact with the water table, where mosquito larvae proliferate. Controlling larvae in these sites is difficult, because the configuration of burrows prevents the use of standard techniques. An experiment was carried out in French Polynesia to control Aedes polynesiensis Marks and Culex spp. breeding in burrows of the land crab Cardisoma carnifex (Herbst). The technique was based on the crab's behavior, which involves the crab carrying food into its burrow. It was shown that appetizing baits impregnated with an insecticide were carried by crabs into the flooded chamber of their burrows. A field treatment of burrows was carried out by sowing insecticide impregnated baits on the ground. The treatment coverage was almost perfect and the easy implementation of the technique enabled large areas to be treated in a short time. The bait was developed by compacting various flours, which easily incorporate a large variety of insecticide formulations. Although the baits can be easily stocked, a reliable insecticide is still to be found. The results indicate that our technique could be a method of choice for treating crab burrows. PMID:12144299

  20. Burrows of the Semi-Terrestrial Crab Ucides cordatus Enhance CO2 Release in a North Brazilian Mangrove Forest

    PubMed Central

    Pülmanns, Nathalie; Diele, Karen; Mehlig, Ulf; Nordhaus, Inga

    2014-01-01

    Ucides cordatus is an abundant mangrove crab in Brazil constructing burrows of up to 2 m depth. Sediment around burrows may oxidize during low tides. This increase in sediment-air contact area may enhance carbon degradation processes. We hypothesized that 1) the sediment CO2 efflux rate is greater with burrows than without and 2) the reduction potential in radial profiles in the sediment surrounding the burrows decreases gradually, until approximating non-bioturbated conditions. Sampling was conducted during the North Brazilian wet season at neap tides. CO2 efflux rates of inhabited burrows and plain sediment were measured with a CO2/H2O gas analyzer connected to a respiration chamber. Sediment redox potential, pH and temperature were measured in the sediment surrounding the burrows at horizontal distances of 2, 5, 8 and 15 cm at four sediment depths (1, 10, 30 and 50 cm) and rH values were calculated. Sediment cores (50 cm length) were taken to measure the same parameters for plain sediment. CO2 efflux rates of plain sediment and individual crab burrows with entrance diameters of 7 cm were 0.7–1.3 µmol m−2 s−1 and 0.2–0.4 µmol burrows−1 s−1, respectively. CO2 released from a Rhizophora mangle dominated forest with an average of 1.7 U. cordatus burrows−1 m−2 yielded 1.0–1.7 µmol m−2 s−1, depending on the month and burrow entrance diameter. Laboratory experiments revealed that 20–60% of the CO2 released by burrows originated from crab respiration. Temporal changes in the reduction potential in the sediment surrounding the burrows did not influence the CO2 release from burrows. More oxidized conditions of plain sediment over time may explain the increase in CO2 release until the end of the wet season. CO2 released by U. cordatus and their burrows may be a significant pathway of CO2 export from mangrove sediments and should be considered in mangrove carbon budget estimates. PMID:25313661

  1. Researching participant recruitment times.

    PubMed

    O'Brien, Rachel; Black, Polly

    2015-11-01

    Conducting research in emergency departments is relatively new, and there are a number of ethical and practical challenges to recruiting patients in these settings. In 2008, the Emergency Medicine Research Group Edinburgh (EMERGE) was set up at the Royal Infirmary of Edinburgh emergency department to support researchers and encourage the growth of research in emergency medicine. As part of a review of their working methods, the group's clinical nurse researchers undertook a small study to identify participant recruitment times. The results showed a significant difference between perceived and actual recruitment times, which has implications for planning staff numbers and budgets. This article describes the evaluation process and methods of data collection, and discusses the results. PMID:26542924

  2. Crayfish fossil burrows, a key tool for identification of terrestrial environments in tide-dominated sequence, Upper Eocene, Sirt Basin, Libya

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Abouessa, Ashour; Duringer, Philippe; Schuster, Mathieu; Pelletier, Jonathan

    2015-11-01

    The majority of decapod crustaceans are defined as marine organisms. Crayfish are one of the relatively few known exceptions. They are freshwater-environment adapted decapods that build characteristically large, simple and branched cylindrical morphotype traces in fluvial plains. Their burrows bear lots of special features that make them different from other burrows. Consequently, the identification of true crayfish burrows in the sedimentary record is crucial for the interpretation of depositional environment. The studied interval (45 m thick, exposed in the Dur At Talah escarpment southern Sirt Basin; Fig. 1) represents a case-study which is previously believed to be purely tidal. In this interval, the identification of the crayfish burrows provides a reliable tool for distinguishing terrestrial environments. The crayfish burrows of Dur At Talah are characterized by dimensional, morphological, and especially behavioral aspects that combined, cannot be ascribed to another burrow makers. Essential criteria used to attribute these burrows to the crayfish include: Their length (the depth of penetration into the sediments), their regularly circular cross-sectional area, the presence of mid-way enlargement chamber along the burrow vertical axis, as well as the subtle preservation of the burrow chimney. More importantly, these morphological features allow the recognition of some of the crayfish diagnostic behavioral habits. Most significant of these is the one deduced from the interaction of the burrow with the seasonal fluctuation of the paleo groundwater level. Supplementary indications that restrict the studied burrows to terrestrial organism include their occurrences within pedogenically altered strata that bear evident features of prolonged emersion. Of these features, mud cracks and burrows that are filled with continental fossil are the clearest. Few horizons with termite fungus comb are also distinguishable. Although other burrows of the classically known

  3. eHealth Recruitment Challenges

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Thompson, Debbe; Canada, Ashanti; Bhatt, Riddhi; Davis, Jennifer; Plesko, Lisa; Baranowski, Tom; Cullen, Karen; Zakeri, Issa

    2006-01-01

    Little is known about effective eHealth recruitment methods. This paper presents recruitment challenges associated with enrolling African-American girls aged 8-10 years in an eHealth obesity prevention program, their effect on the recruitment plan, and potential implications for eHealth research. Although the initial recruitment strategy was…

  4. DISTRIBUTION AND ABUNDANCE OF BURROWING SHRIMP IN TWO OREGON ESTUARIES AND IMPLICATIONS FOR ESTUARINE-SCALE NITROGEN DYNAMICS

    EPA Science Inventory

    Thalassinid burrowing shrimp (Neotrypaea californiensis and Upogebia pugettensis) inhabit large expanses of Pacific estuarine tide flats, from British Columbia to Baja California. The spatial distribution of shrimp populations within estuaries has rarely been quantified because ...

  5. Recruitment and Information Program

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Liebergott, Harvey

    1976-01-01

    The Bureau of Education for the Handicapped's Recruitment and Information Program provides parents and other interested individuals with information on the educational needs of handicapped children through such activities as the National Information Center for the Handicapped ("Closer Look"), pamphlets on various subjects, and media campaigns that…

  6. Recruiting Adult Education Students.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Learning Resources Network, Manhattan, KS.

    This document is the first nationwide compilation of successful recruiting techniques for students in adult basic education, literacy, General Educational Development classes, and adult high school degree programs. Information for the publication was gathered from a literature search and other sources, especially "Reaching the Least Educated," a…

  7. Graduate Student Recruitment.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Baron, Patricia B.

    1987-01-01

    A study of graduate student recruitment practices was conducted in the spring of 1986 to determine the current practice of graduate schools and to determine the extent to which they are using marketing techniques. The members of the Council of Graduate Schools were surveyed; 250 graduate schools responded (69% response rate). Questions concerned…

  8. Today's Recruitment Trends.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Sugarman, Joe

    1996-01-01

    Five trends in the creation of college student recruitment publications are identified: (1) using market research and marketing principles; (2) targeting specific groups; (3) honesty about campus personality and reputation; (4) cost-effectiveness; and (5) creativity in using effective copy and design. (MSE)

  9. Recruiting Seminary Trustees.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Warford, Malcolm

    1985-01-01

    The important role played by trustees of seminaries and the recruitment of these leaders are considered. The serious financial problems facing the board of directors has focused attention on the role and scope of seminary trusteeship. Leadership is needed by trustees to address issues of declining enrollments, curricula that address theological…

  10. Predator nonconsumptive effects on prey recruitment weaken with recruit density.

    PubMed

    Ellrich, Julius A; Scrosati, Ricardo A; Molis, Markus

    2015-03-01

    We investigated the nonconsumptive effects (NCEs) of predatory dogwhelks (Nucella lapillus) on intertidal barnacle (Semibalanus balanoides) recruitment through field experiments on the Gulf of St. Lawrence coast and the Atlantic coast of Nova Scotia, Canada. We studied the recruitment seasons (May-June) of 2011 and 2013. In 2011, the Gulf coast had five times more nearshore phytoplankton (food for barnacle larvae and recruits) during the recruitment season and yielded a 58% higher barnacle recruit density than the Atlantic coast at the end of the recruitment season. In 2013, phytoplankton levels and barnacle recruit density were similar on both coasts and also lower than for the Gulf coast in 2011. Using the comparative-experimental method, the manipulation of dogwhelk presence (without allowing physical contact with prey) revealed that dogwhelk cues limited barnacle recruitment under moderate recruit densities (Atlantic 2011/2013 and Gulf 2013) but had no effect under a high recruit density (Gulf 2011). Barnacle recruits attract settling larvae through chemical cues. Thus, the highest recruit density appears to have neutralized dogwhelk effects. This study suggests that the predation risk perceived by settling larvae may decrease with increasing recruit density and that prey food supply may indirectly influence predator NCEs on prey recruitment. PMID:26236858

  11. Black-footed ferrets and recreational shooting influence the attributes of black-tailed prairie dog burrows

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Biggins, Dean E.; Ramakrishnan, Shantini; Goldberg, Amanda R.; Eads, David A.

    2012-01-01

    Black-tailed prairie dogs (Cynomys ludovicianus) plug burrows occupied by black-footed ferrets (Mustela nigripes), and they also plug burrows to entomb dead prairie dogs. We further evaluated these phenomena by sampling connectivity and plugging of burrow openings on prairie dog colonies occupied by ferrets, colonies where recreational shooting was allowed, and colonies with neither shooting nor ferrets. We counted burrow openings on line surveys and within plots, classified surface plugging, and used an air blower to examine subsurface connectivity. Colonies with ferrets had lower densities of openings, fewer connected openings (suggesting increased subsurface plugging), and more surface plugs compared to colonies with no known ferrets. Colonies with recreational shooting had the lowest densities of burrow openings, and line-survey data suggested colonies with shooting had intermediate rates of surface plugging. The extent of surface and subsurface plugging could have consequences for the prairie dog community by changing air circulation and escape routes of burrow systems and by altering energetic relationships. Burrow plugging might reduce prairie dogs' risk of predation by ferrets while increasing risk of predation by American badgers (Taxidea taxus); however, the complexity of the trade-off is increased if plugging increases the risk of predation on ferrets by badgers. Prairie dogs expend more energy plugging and digging when ferrets or shooting are present, and ferrets increase their energy expenditures when they dig to remove those plugs. Microclimatic differences in plugged burrow systems may play a role in flea ecology and persistence of the flea-borne bacterium that causes plague (Yersinia pestis).

  12. Effect of Burrowing Mammals on the Hydrology of a Drained Riparian Ecosystem

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cassidy, J.; Dragila, M. I.

    2002-12-01

    Agricultural pollutants and excess nutrients are transported by surface and subsurface fluvial mechanisms. Diffusive transport provides significant breakdown and processing of excess nutrients before reaching water resources and ecologically sensitive habitats. However, some quantity of contaminants will bypass the system. This study quantifies the effect of burrowing fossorial mammals, specifically voles (Microtini), on the hydrology of a drained riparian agricultural ecosystem. Animal burrows, surface features and tunnel structures are found to play a significant role in nutrient transport, which is currently unaccounted for by land managers. Furthermore, the proximity of features created by microtini rodents to agricultural tile drainage systems commonly associated with bottomland perennial agriculture may have important implications for land management of water quality. The presence of these features may require an adjustment in our understanding of drainage network behavior.

  13. Relating divergence in polychaete musculature to different burrowing behaviors: a study using opheliidae (Annelida).

    PubMed

    Law, Chris J; Dorgan, Kelly M; Rouse, Greg W

    2014-05-01

    Divergent morphologies among related species are often correlated with distinct behaviors and habitat uses. Considerable morphological and behavioral differences are found between two major clades within the polychaete family Opheliidae. For instance, Thoracophelia mucronata burrows by peristalsis, whereas Armandia brevis exhibits undulatory burrowing. We investigate the anatomical differences that allow for these distinct burrowing behaviors, then interpret these differences in an evolutionary context using broader phylogenetic (DNA-based) and morphological analyses of Opheliidae and taxa, such as Scalibregmatidae and Polygordiidae. Histological three-dimensional-reconstruction of A. brevis reveals bilateral longitudinal muscle bands as the prominent musculature of the body. Circular muscles are absent; instead oblique muscles act with unilateral contraction of longitudinal muscles to bend the body during undulation. The angle of helical fibers in the cuticle is consistent with the fibers supporting turgidity of the body rather than resisting radial expansion from longitudinal muscle contraction. Circular muscles are present in the anterior of T. mucronata, and they branch away from the body wall to form oblique muscles. Helical fibers in the cuticle are more axially oriented than those in undulatory burrowers, facilitating radial expansion during peristalsis. A transition in musculature accompanies the change in external morphology from the thorax to the abdomen, which has oblique muscles similar to A. brevis. Muscles in the muscular septum, which extends posteriorly to form the injector organ, act in synchrony with the body wall musculature during peristalsis: they contract to push fluid anteriorly and expand the head region following a direct peristaltic wave of the body wall muscles. The septum of A. brevis is much thinner and is presumably used for eversion of a nonmuscular pharynx. Mapping of morphological characters onto the molecular-based phylogeny shows

  14. Animal behaviour: use of dung as a tool by burrowing owls.

    PubMed

    Levey, Douglas J; Duncan, R Scot; Levins, Carrie F

    2004-09-01

    Reports of tool usage by birds tend to be anecdotal as only a few individuals may be involved and the behaviour observed can often be interpreted in other ways. Here we describe the widespread collection of mammalian dung by burrowing owls (Athene cunicularia) and show that they use this dung as a bait to attract dung beetles, a major item of prey. Our controlled investigation provides an unambiguous estimate of the importance of tool use in a wild animal. PMID:15343324

  15. Long-term population dynamics of a managed burrowing owl colony

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Barclay, John H.; Korfanta, Nicole M.; Kauffman, Matthew J.

    2011-01-01

    We analyzed the population dynamics of a burrowing owl (Athene cunicularia) colony at Mineta San Jose International Airport in San Jose, California, USA from 1990-2007. This colony was managed by using artificial burrows to reduce the occurrence of nesting owls along runways and within major airport improvement projects during the study period. We estimated annual reproduction in natural and artificial burrows and age-specific survival rates with mark-recapture techniques, and we estimated the relative contribution of these vital rates to population dynamics using a life table response experiment. The breeding colony showed 2 distinct periods of change: high population growth from 7 nesting pairs in 1991 to 40 pairs in 2002 and population decline to 17 pairs in 2007. Reproduction was highly variable: annual nesting success (pairs that raised =1 young) averaged 79% and ranged from 36% to 100%, whereas fecundity averaged 3.36 juveniles/pair and ranged from 1.43 juveniles/pair to 4.54 juveniles/pair. We estimated annual adult survival at 0.710 during the period of colony increase from 1996 to 2001 and 0.465 during decline from 2002 to 2007, but there was no change in annual survival of juveniles between the 2 time periods. Long-term population growth rate (lambda) estimated from average vital rates was lambdaa=1.072 with lambdai=1.288 during colony increase and lambdad=0.921 (DELTA lambda=0.368) during decline. A life table response experiment showed that change in adult survival rate during increasing and declining phases explained more than twice the variation in growth rate than other vital rates. Our findings suggest that management and conservation of declining burrowing owl populations should address factors that influence adult survival.

  16. Impaired burrowing is the most prominent behavioral deficit of aging htau mice.

    PubMed

    Geiszler, Philippine Camilla; Barron, Matthew Richard; Pardon, Marie-Christine

    2016-08-01

    htau mice are deficient of murine tau but express all six human tau isoforms, leading to gradual tau misprocessing and aggregation in brain areas relevant to Alzheimer's disease. While histopathological changes in htau mice have been researched in the past, we focused here on functional consequences of human tau accumulation. htau mice and their background controls - murine tau knock-out (mtau(-/-)) and C57Bl/6J mice - underwent a comprehensive trial battery to investigate species-specific behavior, locomotor activity, emotional responses, exploratory traits, spatial and recognition memory as well as acquisition, retention and extinction of contextual fear at two, four, six, nine and twelve months of age. In htau mice, tau pathology was already present at two months of age, whereas deficits in food burrowing and spatial working memory were first noted at four months of age. At later stages the presence of human tau on a mtau(-/-) background appeared to guard cognitive performance; as mtau(-/-) but not htau mice differed from C57Bl/6J mice in the food burrowing, spontaneous alternation and object discrimination tasks. Aging mtau(-/-) mice also exhibited increased body mass and locomotor activity. These data highlight that reduced food-burrowing performance was the most robust aspect of the htau phenotype with aging. htau and mtau(-/-) deficits in food burrowing pointed at the necessity of intact tau systems for daily life activities. While some htau and mtau(-/-) deficits overlap, age differences between the two genotypes may reflect distinct functional effects and compared to C57Bl/6J mice, the htau phenotype appeared stronger than the mtau(-/-) phenotype at young ages but milder with aging. PMID:27167086

  17. Physicochemical and Microbial Properties of Burrows of the Deposit-feeding Thalassinidean Ghost Shrimp Biffarius arenosus (Decapoda: Callianassidae)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bird, F. L.; Boon, P. I.; Nichols, P. D.

    2000-09-01

    The physicochemical and microbial properties of the burrows of Biffarius arenosus, a ghost shrimp common in temperate south-eastern Australia, were investigated and shown to be more similar to the surface sediments than to the surrounding subsurface sediments. The burrow walls had a similar organic carbon content to that of the surrounding sediment, a result which was consistent with their lack of a discrete mucous lining. Burrow walls, however, were lined with compacted and smoothed sediment and were coloured a distinct light yellow/brown compared with the dark grey of the surrounding subsurface sediments. Moderately reducing redox conditions were found in both the burrow wall and surface sediment (means 213 mV and 243 mV, respectively), indicative of a burrow environment regularly flushed with overlying water by the resident shrimp. Microbial activity (measured as fluorescein diacetate hydrolysis) in the burrow walls was higher than in the surrounding sediments, but there were no significant differences across sediment types in bacterial abundances (epifluorescence microscopy total counts, using DAPI) or in microbial biomasses (total phospholipid contents). Biomarker analysis of the phospholipid fatty acid (PLFA) profiles indicated that bacteria dominated the benthic community (˜80% of total PLFAs), and showed the presence of both aerobic and anaerobic bacteria in all sediment samples.

  18. Carpal-metacarpal specializations for burrowing in South American octodontoid rodents.

    PubMed

    Morgan, Cecilia C; Verzi, Diego H

    2011-08-01

    Among the ecomorphologically diverse Octodontoidea rodents, fossorial habits are prevalent in Ctenomyidae and Octodontidae and occur in some members of Echimyidae. To detect traits linked to scratch-digging, we analyzed morpho-structural variation in the carpus and metacarpus of 27 species of extinct and living octodontoids with epigean, fossorial and subterranean habits. Within a context of relative morphological uniformity, we detected the following specialized traits in the burrowing Clyomys (Echimyidae), Spalacopus (Octodontidae), Ctenomys and †Eucelophorus (Ctenomyidae): broad shortened carpus, robust metacarpals, markedly broad and short metacarpal V, and predominance of ray III (mesaxony, incipient in Spalacopus). In addition, the specialized subterranean Ctenomys presented an enlarged scapholunar in extensive contact with the unciform, and with a complex-shaped proximal articular surface. These features are interpreted as responses to mechanical requirements of scratch-digging, providing greater carpal rigidity and resistance to direct forces exerted during the digging stroke. In Ctenomys, the radius-scapholunar joint restricts movement at wrist level. The phylogenetic distribution of traits shows that the most derived carpal and metacarpal morphologies occur among subterranean octodontoids, also possessing important craniodental adaptations, and supports the hypothesis that the acquisition of digging specializations would have been linked to increasing burrowing frequency in some lineages. Nevertheless, octodontoids with less morphological specializations have metacarpal modifications advantageous for digging, suggesting that scratch-digging specialization preceded the acquisition of tooth-digging traits, in agreement with the general claim that scratch-digging is the primary digging strategy in burrowing mammals. PMID:21557745

  19. The importance of burrowing, climbing and standing upright for laboratory rats

    PubMed Central

    Weary, Daniel M.

    2016-01-01

    Standard laboratory cages prevent rats (Rattus norvegicus) from performing many behaviours that they perform in the wild, but little is known about how this may affect their welfare. The aims of this study were (i) to record the propensity to burrow, climb and stand upright in 3-, 8- and 13-month old laboratory rats housed in semi-naturalistic environments and (ii) to compare the frequency of lateral stretching in semi-naturalistic versus standard-housed rats; we predicted standard-housed rats would perform more lateral stretches to compensate for the inability to stretch upright. Rats' propensity to burrow remained constant as they aged (approx. 30 bouts per day totalling 20–30 min), suggesting burrowing is important to rats. Climbing decreased from 76 to 7 bouts per day at 3 versus 13 months, probably because of declining physical ability. Upright standing decreased from 178 to 73 bouts per day, but continued to be frequently expressed even in older rats. Standard-housed rats stretched much more frequently than semi-naturalistic-housed rats (53 versus 6 bouts per day at 13 months), perhaps in compensation for inability to stretch upright and to relieve stiffness caused by low mobility associated with standard housing. These findings suggest that standard laboratory cages interfere with important natural behaviours, which is likely to compromise rat welfare. PMID:27429772

  20. Regional and Seasonal Diet of the Western Burrowing Owl in South-Central Nevada

    SciTech Connect

    Derek B. Hall, Paul D. Greger, Jeffrey R. Rosier

    2009-04-01

    We examined diets of Western Burrowing Owls (Athene cunicularia hypugaea) based on contents of pellets and large prey remains collected year-round at burrows in each of the 3 regions in south central Nevada (Mojave Desert, Great Basin Desert, and Transition region). The most common prey items, based on percent frequency of occurrence, were crickets and grasshoppers, beetles, rodents, sun spiders, and scorpions. The most common vertebrate prey was kangaroo rats (Dipodomys spp.). True bugs (Hemiptera), scorpions, and western harvest mice (Reithrodontomys megalotis) occurred most frequently in pellets from the Great Basin Desert region. Kangaroo rats (Dipodomys spp.) and pocket mice (Perognathinae) were the most important vertebrate prey items in the Transition and Mojave Desert regions, respectively. Frequency of occurrence of any invertebrate prey was high (>80%) in samples year-round but dropped in winter samples, with scorpions and sun spiders exhibiting the steepest declines. Frequency of occurrence of any vertebrate prey peaked in spring samples, was intermediate for winter and summer samples, and was lowest in fall samples. With the possible exception of selecting for western harvest mice in the Great Basin Desert region, Western Burrowing Owls in our study appeared to be opportunistic foragers with a generalist feeding strategy.

  1. Effects of invasive rats and burrowing seabirds on seeds and seedlings on New Zealand islands.

    PubMed

    Grant-Hoffman, Madeline N; Mulder, Christa P H; Bellingham, Peter J

    2010-04-01

    Rats (Rattus rattus, Rattus norvegicus, Rattus exulans) are important invaders on islands. They alter vegetation indirectly by preying on burrowing seabirds. These seabirds affect vegetation through nutrient inputs from sea to land and physical disturbance through trampling and burrowing. Rats also directly affect vegetation though consumption of seeds and seedlings. Seedling communities on northern New Zealand islands differ in composition and densities among islands which have never been invaded by rats, are currently invaded by rats, or from which rats have been eradicated. We conducted experimental investigations to determine the mechanisms driving these patterns. When the physical disturbance of seabirds was removed, in soils collected from islands and inside exclosures, seedling densities increased with seabird burrow density. For example, seedling densities inside exclosures were 10 times greater than those outside. Thus the negative effects of seabirds on seedlings, by trampling and uprooting, overwhelm the potentially beneficial effects of high levels of seed germination, seedling emergence, and possibly seed production, which result from seed burial and nutrient additions. Potential seedling density was reduced on an island where rats were present, germination of seeds from soils of this island was approximately half that found on other islands, but on this island seedling density inside exclosures was 7 times the density outside. Although the total negative effects of seabirds and rats on seedling densities are similar (reduced seedling density), the differences in mechanisms and life stages affected result in very different filters on the plant community. PMID:19921273

  2. Burrowing, byssus, and biomarkers: behavioral and physiological indicators of sublethal thermal stress in freshwater mussels (Unionidae)

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Archambault, Jennifer M.; Cope, W. Gregory; Kwak, Thomas J.

    2013-01-01

    Recent research has elucidated the acute lethal effects of elevated water temperatures to glochidia (larvae), juvenile, and adult life stages of freshwater mussels (Order Unionida), but few studies have focused on sublethal effects of thermal stress. We evaluated the sublethal effects of elevated temperature on burrowing behavior and byssus production in juveniles, and on enzymatic biomarkers of stress in adults in acute (96 h) laboratory experiments in sediment, with two acclimation temperatures (22 and 27 °C) and two experimental water levels (watered and dewatered) as proxies for flow regime. Increasing temperature significantly reduced burrowing in all five species tested, and the dewatered treatment (a proxy for drought conditions) reduced burrowing in all but Amblema plicata. Production of byssal threads was affected most drastically by flow regime, with the probability of byssus presence reduced by 93–99% in the dewatered treatment, compared to the watered treatment (a proxy for low flow conditions); increasing temperature alone reduced byssus by 18–35%. Alanine aminotransferase and aspartate aminotransferase were significantly affected by treatment temperature in the 27 °C acclimation, watered test (p = 0.04 and 0.02, respectively). Our results are important in the context of climate change, because stream temperature and flow are expected to change with increasing air temperature and altered precipitation patterns.

  3. Distribution of the Chuckwalla, Western Burrowing Owl, and Six Bat Species on the Nevada Test Site

    SciTech Connect

    Cathy A. Willis

    1997-05-01

    Field Surveys were conducted in 1996 to determine the current distribution of several animal species of concern on the Nevada Test Site (NTS). They included the chuckwall (Sauromalus obesus), western burrowing owl (Speotyto cunicularia), and six species of bats. Nineteen chuckwallas and 118 scat locations were found during the chuckwalla field study. Eighteen western burrowing owls were found at 12 sighting locations during the 1996 field study. Of the eleven bat species of concern which might occur on the NTS, five, and possibly six, were captured during this survey. The U.S. Department of Energy, Nevada Operations Office, takes certain management actions to protect and conserve the chuckwalla, western burrowing owl, and bats on the NTS. These actions are described and include: (1) conducting surveys at sites of proposed land-disturbing activities (2) altering projects whenever possible to avoid or minimize impacts to these species (3) maintaining a geospatial database of known habitat for species of concern (4) sharing sighting and trap location data gathered on the NTS with other local land and resource managers, and (5) conducting periodic field surveys to monitor these species distribution and relative abundance on the NTS.

  4. Bioassessment of contaminant transport and distribution in aquatic ecosystems by chemical analysis of burrowing mayflies (Hexagenia)

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Steingraeber, M.T.; Wiener, J.G.

    1995-01-01

    Burrowing mayfly nymphs (Ephemeroptera) inhabit and ingest fine-grained sediments and detritus that may be enriched with metals and persistent organic compounds. The burrowing nymphs can externally adsorb and internally assimilate these contaminants, providing a link for the food chain transfer of potentially toxic substances from sediments to organisms in higher trophic levels. The emergent adults are short-lived and do not feed, thus their gut contents do not contribute greatly to their total contaminant burden. These characteristics make Hexagenia spp. And certain other burrowing mayflies useful for assessing ecosystem contamination. General protocols are presented for the collection, processing and analysis of emergent mayflies to assess the spatial distribution and bioaccumulation of sediment-associated contaminants in aquatic ecosystems. Two essential components of this bioassessment approach are a network of on-site volunteers with the materials and instructions needed to correctly collect and store samples and quality assurance procedures to estimate the accuracy of chemical analyses. The utility of this approach is demonstrated with an example of its application to the Upper Mississippi River (USA). Determination of cadmium, mercury and polychlorinated biphenyl congeners in emergent Hexagenia bilineata from a 1250 km reach of this river revealed (1) several source areas of contaminants and (2) distinct patterns in the bioaccumulation (and apparent sediment-associated transport) of each residue on both small and large spatial scales.

  5. Characteristics of roost sites used by burrowing owls (Athene cunicularia) wintering in Southern Texas

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Williford, D.L.; Woodin, M.C.; Skoruppa, M.K.; Hickman, G.C.

    2007-01-01

    The western burrowing owl (Athene cunicularia hypugaea) is threatened in Mexico, endangered in Canada, and declining in most of the western United States. Most previous research has focused on burrowing owl breeding biology, and little is known about its winter ecology. We determined characteristics of roost sites used by western burrowing owls in southern Texas during winter. Data on 46 winter roost sites were collected from 15 November 2001 to 15 February 2002. Of these roost sites, 87% were located on agricultural land, 80% were along roads, and 74% were concrete, steel, or cast-iron culverts. Mean diameter (??SE) of roost site openings was 22 ?? 1.5 cm. Most roost sites (70%) were located on inaccessible private lands. Bare ground comprised 61% of ground cover within a 10-m radius of roost sites. We recommend that landowners and public-land managers should be encouraged to use smaller-diameter culverts when building roads or replacing old or damaged culverts and to graze livestock or mow around these culverts during winter.

  6. A theoretical study of burrowing in dry soil using razor clam-inspired kinematics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Winter, Amos; Isava, Monica

    2015-11-01

    This work investigates whether the digging kinematics of Ensis directus, the Atlantic razor clam, could be utilized in dry soil. In wet soil, E. directus uses contractions of its valves to relieve stress on the surrounding soil, and then draw water towards its body to create a pocket of fluidized substrate. This locally fluidized zone requires much less force to move through than static soil, resulting in burrowing energy that scales linearly with depth, rather than depth squared. In dry soil, if the valves of a clam-like device are contracted fast enough, the horizontal stress in the soil could be brought to a zero-stress state. This would correspondingly reduce the local vertical stresses to zero, which could drastically lower the forces required to burrow compared to moving through static dry soil. Using analytical models of soil failure mechanics, we investigated the critical timescales for inducing a zero-stress state in soil surrounding an E. directus-like device with contracting valves. This device was modeled as a similar size to a real razor clam (15 mm wide). It was found that for most dry soils, the device would have to contract its valves in 0.02 seconds, a speed within the realm of possibility for a mechanical system. These results suggest that the burrowing method used by E. directus could feasibly be adapted for digging in dry soil.

  7. Occupancy rates of primary burrowing crayfish in natural and disturbed large river bottomlands

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Loughman, Zachary J.; Welsh, Stuart; Simon, Thomas P.

    2012-01-01

    Among crayfish, primary burrowing species are the least understood ecologically. Many primary burrowing crayfish inhabit floodplains where forested landscapes have been fragmented by agricultural, industrial, or residential uses. In this study, site occupancy rates (ψ) were modeled for two primary burrowing crayfish, Fallicambarus fodiens (Cottle, 1863) and Cambarus thomai Jezerinac, 1993, from Ohio and Kanawha river floodplains in West Virginia, U.S.A. Fallicambarus fodiens is one of West Virginia’s rarest crayfish, while C. thomai is prevalent in most wetlands along both river floodplains. Occupancy rate modeling incorporated four environmental covariates (forest age, soil type, tree frequency, and land use). Based on presence/absence data, forests with tree ages >100 years (ΔQAICc = 0) and sites with loam soils (ΔQAICc = 1.80) were most likely to harbor F. fodiens populations. For C. thomai, several models were supported owing to model selection uncertainty, but those with the land use covariate had more total model weight (total w i = 0 . 54 ) than all other covariate models. Cambarus thomai rarely occupied industrial/agricultural sites, but were often present in forested and residential sites. Although the influence of covariates on site occupancy differed between species, both taxa readily utilized mature forested habitats when available. Conservation actions for F. fodiens and C. thomai should focus on preserving forested tracts along large river floodplains

  8. Multiple evolutionary origins of Australian soil-burrowing cockroaches driven by climate change in the Neogene.

    PubMed

    Lo, Nathan; Tong, K Jun; Rose, Harley A; Ho, Simon Y W; Beninati, Tiziana; Low, David L T; Matsumoto, Tadao; Maekawa, Kiyoto

    2016-02-24

    Parallel evolution is the independent appearance of similar derived phenotypes from similar ancestral forms. It is of key importance in the debate over whether evolution is stochastic and unpredictable, or subject to constraints that limit available phenotypic options. Nevertheless, its occurrence has rarely been demonstrated above the species level. Climate change on the Australian landmass over the last approximately 20 Myr has provided conditions conducive to parallel evolution, as taxa at the edges of shrinking mesic habitats adapted to drier biomes. Here, we investigate the phylogeny and evolution of Australian soil-burrowing and wood-feeding blaberid cockroaches. Soil burrowers (subfamily Geoscapheinae) are found in relatively dry sclerophyllous and scrubland habits, whereas wood feeders (subfamily Panesthiinae) are found in rainforest and wet sclerophyll. We sequenced and analysed mitochondrial and nuclear markers from 142 specimens, and estimated the evolutionary time scale of the two subfamilies. We found evidence for the parallel evolution of soil-burrowing taxa from wood-feeding ancestors on up to nine occasions. These transitions appear to have been driven by periods of aridification during the Miocene and Pliocene across eastern Australia. Our results provide an illuminating example of climate-driven parallel evolution among species. PMID:26888035

  9. Recruiting and Selecting New Teachers: The Recruitment Budgeting Cycle.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Beebe, Robert J.

    1998-01-01

    The recruitment budgeting cycle (RBC) places teacher-recruitment activities on a more systematic, professional plane. RBC action steps include reviewing and updating recruitment goals and activities, identifying the previous year's activities, defining outcome criteria for determining cost effectiveness, ranking activity costs, evaluating…

  10. The Recruiter's Guidebook for Identification and Recruitment. Revised.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Wisconsin State Dept. of Public Instruction, Madison. Div. for Management and Planning Services.

    A uniform understanding of the identification and recruitment component of the Wisconsin Elementary and Secondary Education Act Title I Migrant Education Program is the purpose of this recruiter's guidebook which can be an aid to recruiters, administrators, site coordinators, teachers, and parents in meeting the special educational needs of…

  11. The Students-Recruiting-Students Undergraduate Engineering Recruiting Programme.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Gattis, Carol; Nachtmann, Heather; Youngblood, Alisha D.

    2003-01-01

    Describes the Students-Recruiting-Students (SRS) program developed to recruit high school students into the Industrial Engineering Department at the University of Arkansas. Presents four phases of the program along with seven years of program results. Encourages successful development of similar recruiting programs. (KHR)

  12. Legal aspects of physician recruitment.

    PubMed

    Roediger, Joan M

    2005-01-01

    It's no secret that recruiting a new physician to your practice is a difficult task. Depending on your medical specialty, it may take two years and possibly longer to recruit the right person. This article addresses some of the key steps you can take now to overcome obstacles in the recruiting process. PMID:16095079

  13. eHealth recruitment challenges

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Little is known about effective eHealth recruitment methods. This paper presents recruitment challenges associated with enrolling African-American girls aged 8-10 years in an eHealth obesity prevention program, their effect on the recruitment plan, and potential implications for eHealth research. Al...

  14. Recruitment of Hexagenia mayfly nymphs in western Lake Erie linked to environmental variability.

    PubMed

    Bridgeman, Thomas B; Schloesser, Don W; Krause, Ann E

    2006-04-01

    After a 40-year absence caused by pollution and eutrophication, burrowing mayflies (Hexagenia spp.) recolonized western Lake Erie in the mid 1990s as water quality improved. Mayflies are an important food resource for the economically valuable yellow perch fishery and are considered to be major indicator species of the ecological condition of the lake. Since their reappearance, however, mayfly populations have suffered occasional unexplained recruitment failures. In 2002, a failure of fall recruitment followed an unusually warm summer in which western Lake Erie became temporarily stratified, resulting in low dissolved oxygen levels near the lake floor. In the present study, we examined a possible link between Hexagenia recruitment and periods of intermittent stratification for the years 1997 2002. A simple model was developed using surface temperature, wind speed, and water column data from 2003 to predict stratification. The model was then used to detect episodes of stratification in past years for which water column data are unavailable. Low or undetectable mayfly recruitment occurred in 1997 and 2002, years in which there was frequent or extended stratification between June and September. Highest mayfly reproduction in 2000 corresponded to the fewest stratified periods. These results suggest that even relatively brief periods of stratification can result in loss of larval mayfly recruitment, probably through the effects of hypoxia. A trend toward increasing frequency of hot summers in the Great Lakes region could result in recurrent loss of mayfly larvae in western Lake Erie and other shallow areas in the Great Lakes. PMID:16711047

  15. Nichelle Nichols, NASA Recruiter

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1977-01-01

    Actress Nichelle Nichols was born in Robbins, Illinois on December 29, 1936. She played Lieutenant Uhura the Communications Officer on the U.S.S. Enterprise in the original series, Star Trek. Nichols stayed with the show and has appeared in six Star Trek movies. Her portrayal of Uhura on Star Trek marked one of the first non-stereotypical roles assigned to an African-American actress. She also provided the voice for Lt. Uhura on the Star Trek animated series in 1974-75. Before joining the crew on Star Trek, she sang and danced with Duke Ellington's band. Nichols was always interested in space travel. She flew aboard the C-141 Astronomy Observatory, which analyzed the atmospheres of Mars and Saturn on an eight hour, high altitude mission. From the late 1970's until the late 1980's, NASA employed Nichelle Nichols to recruit new astronaut candidates. Many of her new recruits were women or members of racial and ethnic minorities, including Guion Bluford (the first African-American astronaut), Sally Ride (the first female American astronaut), Judith Resnik (one of the original set of female astronauts, who perished during the launch of the Challenger on January 28, 1986), and Ronald McNair (the second African-American astronaut, and another victim of the Challenger accident). Currently Nichelle Nichols is actively involved in movies and special appearances. She is also a spokesperson for her favorite charity, 'The Kwanzaa Foundation.'

  16. Impacts of off-road vehicles (ORVs) on burrow architecture of ghost crabs (genus Ocypode) on sandy beaches.

    PubMed

    Lucrezi, Serena; Schlacher, Thomas A

    2010-06-01

    Recreational beach use with off-road vehicles is popular, but potentially harmful from an environmental perspective. Beaches are important habitats to invertebrates such as ghost crabs of the genus Ocyopde, which excavate extensive and elaborate burrows. Ghost crabs are sensitive to human pressures and changes in burrow architecture may thus be a consequence of disturbance by vehicles--the predictive hypothesis of this article. This was tested during the austral spring and summer by comparing 305 burrow casts between beaches open and closed to vehicles in Eastern Australia. Traffic influenced burrow architecture: there were smaller crabs on vehicle-impacted beaches, and after the peak traffic period (Christmas and New Year holidays), these crabs had tunnelled deeper into the sediment on shores rutted by cars. Crabs constructed all types of previously described burrows, but, significantly, smaller crabs from vehicle-impacted beaches simplified their shapes following heavy traffic disturbance from four (I, J, Y, M) to only two types (I, Y). These data support a model of active behavioural responses to disturbance from vehicles, extending the known effects of beach traffic to impacts on behavioural traits of the beach fauna. PMID:20411260

  17. Impacts of Off-Road Vehicles (ORVs) on Burrow Architecture of Ghost Crabs (Genus Ocypode) on Sandy Beaches

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lucrezi, Serena; Schlacher, Thomas A.

    2010-06-01

    Recreational beach use with off-road vehicles is popular, but potentially harmful from an environmental perspective. Beaches are important habitats to invertebrates such as ghost crabs of the genus Ocyopde, which excavate extensive and elaborate burrows. Ghost crabs are sensitive to human pressures and changes in burrow architecture may thus be a consequence of disturbance by vehicles—the predictive hypothesis of this article. This was tested during the austral spring and summer by comparing 305 burrow casts between beaches open and closed to vehicles in Eastern Australia. Traffic influenced burrow architecture: there were smaller crabs on vehicle-impacted beaches, and after the peak traffic period (Christmas and New Year holidays), these crabs had tunnelled deeper into the sediment on shores rutted by cars. Crabs constructed all types of previously described burrows, but, significantly, smaller crabs from vehicle-impacted beaches simplified their shapes following heavy traffic disturbance from four (I, J, Y, M) to only two types (I, Y). These data support a model of active behavioural responses to disturbance from vehicles, extending the known effects of beach traffic to impacts on behavioural traits of the beach fauna.

  18. Burrowing in the freshwater mussel Elliptio complanata is sexually dimorphic and feminized by low levels of atrazine

    PubMed Central

    Wedin, Maria Belopolsky; Bonventre, Josephine A.; Dillon-White, Marsha; Hines, Jessica; Weeks, Benjamin S.; André, Chantale; Schreibman, Martin P.; Gagné, Francois

    2015-01-01

    The widely used herbicide atrazine (ATR) may have endocrine-associated adverse effects, including on behavior. In this study, 120 adult freshwater mussels, Elliptio complanata, were exposed to ATR at the environmentally-relevant concentrations of 1.5, 15, or 150 μg/L. Burrowing depth was evaluated hourly for 6 hr and at sacrifice animals were sexed by gonad smear. Female controls burrowed overall approximately 30% less than males, the first report of sexual dimorphism in this behavior. Atrazine at 15 μg/L feminized burrowing in both sexes in that exposed animals burrowed 20% less than their same sex controls. Males treated with 1.5 μg /L ATR displayed approximately 20-fold higher vitellogenin (VTG) levels than same sex controls. Higher concentrations of ATR were not associated with increasing effects. A scatterplot showed a weak binomial curve associating low burrowing with high VTG levels. Taken together, these data suggest a non-linear dose-response in behavioral and physiological feminization produced by ATR and support the need to reconsider the widespread use of this compound. PMID:24279817

  19. eHealth recruitment challenges.

    PubMed

    Thompson, Debbe; Canada, Ashanti; Bhatt, Riddhi; Davis, Jennifer; Plesko, Lisa; Baranowski, Tom; Cullen, Karen; Zakeri, Issa

    2006-11-01

    Little is known about effective eHealth recruitment methods. This paper presents recruitment challenges associated with enrolling African-American girls aged 8-10 years in an eHealth obesity prevention program, their effect on the recruitment plan, and potential implications for eHealth research. Although the initial recruitment strategy was literature-informed, it failed to enroll the desired number of girls within a reasonable time period. Therefore, the recruitment strategy was reformulated to incorporate principles of social marketing and traditional marketing techniques. The resulting plan included both targeted, highly specific strategies (e.g., selected churches), and more broad-based approaches (e.g., media exposure, mass mailings, radio advertisements). The revised plan enabled recruitment goals to be attained. Media appeared to be particularly effective at reaching the intended audience. Future research should identify the most effective recruitment strategies for reaching potential eHealth audiences. PMID:17950873

  20. Infestation of the clam Chione fluctifraga by the burrowing worm Polydora sp. nov. in laboratory conditions.

    PubMed

    Tinoco-Orta, Gissel Dalila; Cáceres-Martínez, Jorge

    2003-07-01

    Burrowing worms that belong to Polydora spp. infest marine mollusks cultured worldwide, causing problems for production and marketing. The clam Chione fluctifraga is semi-cultured in Bahía Falsa, Baja California, NW Mexico, and some clams harbor burrowing worms. The present study was carried out to determine the identity of the worm species infesting the clam, the infesting process by cohabitation of infested and non-infested clams in aquaria with a variety of substrates (fine sand, gross sand, plastic bag used for clam culture, and aquarium without substrate) and turbulence conditions, and the occurrence of architomy phenomena in connection with infestation of the clam. The burrowing worm was considered as a nova species due to its singular limbate neurosetae and notosetae in the setiger 5, hooks in the setiger 6, eyes not present, and general pigmentation, among other characteristics. Infestation was similar in all substrates and turbulence conditions, but it was more abundant on clams previously infested than on those free of worms, showing a preferential settlement of worm infesting stages on pre-infested clams. Regeneration was observed in all segments of the worm: anterior (metastomium), medium, and posterior (prostomium); the complete regeneration time occurred in 40 days. This is the first record of architomy in a species of Polydora and this phenomenon could account for the increase of infestation intensity in pre-infested clams at the end of the study period. Infestation of clams by settling polichaete in the conditions studied, and the architomy process in this worm species, shows its great infesting capacity. PMID:12877826

  1. Effects of macroalgal mats and hypoxia on burrowing depth of the New Zealand cockle ( Austrovenus stutchburyi)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Marsden, Islay D.; Bressington, Melanie J.

    2009-02-01

    Macroalgal mats commonly occur in estuaries and sheltered embayments where they are thought to affect the oxygen conditions in the sediment, influence the geochemical process and influence the burrowing activity of bivalves. Laboratory experiments evaluated the effects of sediment hypoxia and algal mats on the burrowing ability and survival of the New Zealand cockle Austrovenus stutchburyi at 15 °C. Both dissolved oxygen concentration and time affected the burial depth of the cockles over the 12 days of the experiment. In hypoxic conditions (<2 mg L -1), cockles migrated to the sediment surface after 3.5 days and mortality occurred after 11 days. Bivalves exposed to oxygen concentrations of 2-3 mg L -1 buried closer to the sediment surface than those in the other treatments. Using a simulated tidal regime, in a mesocosm, burrowing behaviour of the cockle and pore-water oxygen conditions in the sediment were measured on exposure to experimental mats of Gracilaria chilensis and Ulva spp. for over 6 days. Algal mats on the surface of the sediment significantly lowered the dissolved oxygen concentration of the sediment pore-water and this effect was greater for the Ulva spp. treatment than the G. chilensis treatment. Cockles were buried more deeply in the control treatment without algae than in either of the two algal treatments. It is concluded that reduced oxygen conditions (<3.5 mg L -1) develop under macroalgal mats and that this reduces the burial depth of cockles. The potential harmful effects of the mats can depend on the species forming the mat and these effects are likely to be greater in the field than they are in controlled laboratory conditions.

  2. Modelling field-data of preferential flow in paddy soil induced by earthworm burrows.

    PubMed

    Sander, Till; Gerke, Horst H

    2009-02-16

    Dye tracer studies revealed that earthworm burrows in the compacted plough pan of a Chinese paddy rice field can serve as preferential flow paths. It is, however, unclear whether the observed bypass of the compacted soil horizon might be explained by differences in hydraulic properties between the plough pan, the worm burrows with a surrounding denser drilosphere and the un-compacted subsoil, or by lower-permeable macropore walls. The objective is to separately analyse effects of the individual flow domains and to identify possible limiting factors (bottlenecks) in the flow system for better soil drainage management. Hydraulic properties are inversely estimated from in situ measurements of pressure heads and evaporation by using HYDRUS_1D code. Field data of 2D pressure head progression after dye tracer infiltration in the vicinity of worm burrows are simulated using HYDRUS_2D. The axisymmetric 2D flow model considers a highly permeable cylindrical macropore region in the centre of the flow domain, assuming Darcy's law is valid. The match between simulated and measured pressure head fields improved after including a lower-permeable drilosphere pore domain. Scenario simulations show that the inflow into the 'bypass-flow' domain are reduced by the homogenized topsoil (i.e., after puddling) and limited if the macropore domain is relatively shallow. The results suggest that basic structural features may in this concept be considered as one possibility to describe observed preferential flow patterns. The separate consideration of soil structural effects may help developing and improving management strategies for manipulation of preferential flow in soils of paddy fields. PMID:19064301

  3. Importance of agricultural landscapes to nesting burrowing owls in the Northern Great Plains, USA

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Restani, M.; Davies, J.M.; Newton, W.E.

    2008-01-01

    Anthropogenic habitat loss and fragmentation are the principle factors causing declines of grassland birds. Declines in burrowing owl (Athene cunicularia) populations have been extensive and have been linked to habitat loss, primarily the decline of black-tailed prairie dog (Cynomys ludovicianus) colonies. Development of habitat use models is a research priority and will aid conservation of owls inhabiting human-altered landscapes. From 2001 to 2004 we located 160 burrowing owl nests on prairie dog colonies on the Little Missouri National Grassland in North Dakota. We used multiple linear regression and Akaike's Information Criterion to estimate the relationship between cover type characteristics surrounding prairie dog colonies and (1) number of owl pairs per colony and (2) reproductive success. Models were developed for two spatial scales, within 600 m and 2,000 m radii of nests for cropland, crested wheatgrass (Agropyron cristatum), grassland, and prairie dog colonies. We also included number of patches as a metric of landscape fragmentation. Annually, fewer than 30% of prairie dog colonies were occupied by owls. None of the models at the 600 m scale explained variation in number of owl pairs or reproductive success. However, models at the 2,000 m scale did explain number of owl pairs and reproductive success. Models included cropland, crested wheatgrass, and prairie dog colonies. Grasslands were not included in any of the models and had low importance values, although percentage grassland surrounding colonies was high. Management that protects prairie dog colonies bordering cropland and crested wheatgrass should be implemented to maintain nesting habitat of burrowing owls. ?? 2008 Springer Science+Business Media B.V.

  4. A 200 year chronology of burrowing mayflies (Hexagenia spp.) in Saginaw Bay

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Schloesser, Donald W.; Robbins, John A.; Matisoff, Gerald; Nalepa, Thomas F.; Morehead, Nancy R.

    2014-01-01

    After an absence of 50 years, burrowing mayflies (Hexagenia spp.) colonized western Lake Erie which led to interest in whether this fauna can be used to measure recovery in nearshore waters throughout the Great Lakes. However, in many areas we do not know if mayflies were native/endemic and thus, whether recovery is a logical measure to assess progress of recovery. In the present study, we construct a chronologic record of relative abundance of burrowing mayflies in Saginaw Bay by the use of mayfly tusks and radionuclides in sediments (i.e., a paleoecologic record) and historic records of mayfly nymphs in the bay. These records reveal that mayflies: (1) were few before 1799, which indicates that nymphs were probably native/endemic in the bay, (2) increased between 1799 and 1807 and remained at relatively high levels between 1807 and 1965, probably in response to increased nutrient run-off from the watershed, (3) declined dramatically between 1965 and 1973, probably as a result of excessive eutrophication in the mid-1950s; and, (4) were few and highly variable between 1973 and 2001, probably as a result of low and unstable abundances of mayfly nymphs. Historic records verify that nymphs disappeared in the bay in the late-1950s to early-1960s which is in agreement with the paleoecologic record. Reoccurrence of low abundances of nymphs in the bay between 1991 and 2008 and comparison of chronologic records of nymphs in Saginaw Bay and western Lake Erie suggest that mayflies may return to Saginaw Bay in the early-21st century. Undoubtedly, watershed conservation and three decades of pollution abatement have set the stage for a recovery of burrowing mayflies in Saginaw Bay, and possibly in other areas of the Great Lakes.

  5. Comparing food limitation among three stages of nesting: supplementation experiments with the burrowing owl

    PubMed Central

    Wellicome, Troy I; Danielle Todd, L; Poulin, Ray G; Holroyd, Geoffrey L; Fisher, Ryan J

    2013-01-01

    Abstract Food availability is an important limiting factor for avian reproduction. In altricial birds, food limitation is assumed to be more severe during the nestling stage than during laying or incubation, but this has yet to be adequately tested. Using food-supplementation experiments over a 5-year period, we determined the degree and timing of food limitation for burrowing owls (Athene cunicularia) breeding in Canada. Burrowing owls are an endangered species and food limitation during the nestling stage could influence reproductive performance of this species at the northern extent of their range. Supplemented pairs fledged on average 47% more owlets than unfed pairs, except during a year when natural food was not limiting (i.e., a prey irruption year). The difference in fledgling production resulted from high nestling mortality in unfed broods, with 96% of all nestling deaths being attributed to food shortage. Supplemental feeding during the nestling period also increased fledgling structural size. Pairs fed from the start of laying produced the same number of hatchlings as pairs that received no supplemental food before hatch. Furthermore, pairs supplemented from egg laying to fledging and pairs supplemented during the nestling period alone had the same patterns of nestling survival, equal numbers of fledglings, and similar fledgling mass and structural size. Our results provide empirical support for the hypothesis that the nestling period is the most food-limited phase of the breeding cycle. The experimental design we introduce here could be used with other altricial species to examine how the timing of food limitation differs among birds with a variety of life-history strategies. For burrowing owls, and other species with similar life histories, long-term, large-scale, and appropriately timed habitat management increasing prey abundance or availability is critical for conservation. Our results provide empirical support for the hypothesis that the nestling

  6. Surgical removal of a thymoma in a burrowing owl (Athene cunicularia).

    PubMed

    Kinney, Matthew E; Hanley, Christopher S; Trupkiewicz, John G

    2012-06-01

    A 12-year-old male burrowing owl (Athene cunicularia) was presented for evaluation of a mass in the right cervical region. A thymoma was diagnosed after surgical resection and histopathologic evaluation. Extensive adherence of the thymoma to the esophagus and suspected invasion into the right jugular vein contributed to a poor postsurgical outcome. Diagnosis and treatment of thymomas in avian species is similar to that in mammals. Surgical removal of noninvasive thymomas is usually curative. Thymomas are rarely reported in avian species and this is the first report in a strigiform bird. PMID:22872980

  7. Comparing food limitation among three stages of nesting: supplementation experiments with the burrowing owl.

    PubMed

    Wellicome, Troy I; Danielle Todd, L; Poulin, Ray G; Holroyd, Geoffrey L; Fisher, Ryan J

    2013-08-01

    Food availability is an important limiting factor for avian reproduction. In altricial birds, food limitation is assumed to be more severe during the nestling stage than during laying or incubation, but this has yet to be adequately tested. Using food-supplementation experiments over a 5-year period, we determined the degree and timing of food limitation for burrowing owls (Athene cunicularia) breeding in Canada. Burrowing owls are an endangered species and food limitation during the nestling stage could influence reproductive performance of this species at the northern extent of their range. Supplemented pairs fledged on average 47% more owlets than unfed pairs, except during a year when natural food was not limiting (i.e., a prey irruption year). The difference in fledgling production resulted from high nestling mortality in unfed broods, with 96% of all nestling deaths being attributed to food shortage. Supplemental feeding during the nestling period also increased fledgling structural size. Pairs fed from the start of laying produced the same number of hatchlings as pairs that received no supplemental food before hatch. Furthermore, pairs supplemented from egg laying to fledging and pairs supplemented during the nestling period alone had the same patterns of nestling survival, equal numbers of fledglings, and similar fledgling mass and structural size. Our results provide empirical support for the hypothesis that the nestling period is the most food-limited phase of the breeding cycle. The experimental design we introduce here could be used with other altricial species to examine how the timing of food limitation differs among birds with a variety of life-history strategies. For burrowing owls, and other species with similar life histories, long-term, large-scale, and appropriately timed habitat management increasing prey abundance or availability is critical for conservation. Our results provide empirical support for the hypothesis that the nestling period is

  8. Issues to be considered in counting burrows as a measure of Atlantic ghost crab populations, an important bioindicator of sandy beaches.

    PubMed

    Pombo, Maíra; Turra, Alexander

    2013-01-01

    The use of indirect estimates of ghost-crab populations to assess beach disturbance has several advantages, including non-destructiveness, ease and low cost, although this strategy may add some degree of noise to estimates of population parameters. Resolution of these shortcomings may allow wider use of these populations as an indicator of differences in quality among beaches. This study analyzed to what extent the number of crab burrows may diverge from the number of animals, considering beach morphology, burrow depth and signs of occupation as contributing factors or indicators of a higher or lower occupation rate. We estimated the occupation rate of crabs in burrows on nine low-use beaches, which were previously categorized as dissipative, intermediate or reflexive. Three random 2-m-wide transects were laid perpendicular to the shoreline, where burrows were counted and excavated to search for crabs. The depth and signs of recent activity around the burrows were also recorded. The occupation rate differed on the different beaches, but morphodynamics was not identified as a grouping factor. A considerable number of burrows that lacked signs of recent activity proved to be occupied, and the proportions of these burrows also differed among beaches. Virtually all burrows less than 10 cm deep were unoccupied; the occupation rate tended to increase gradually to a burrow depth of 20-35 cm. Other methods (water, smoke, and traps) were applied to measure the effectiveness of excavating as a method for burrow counts. Traps and excavation proved to be the best methods. These observations illustrate the possible degree of unreliability of comparisons of beaches based on indirect measures. Combining burrow depth assessment with surrounding signs of occupation proved to be a useful tool to minimize biases. PMID:24376748

  9. Issues to Be Considered in Counting Burrows as a Measure of Atlantic Ghost Crab Populations, an Important Bioindicator of Sandy Beaches

    PubMed Central

    Pombo, Maíra; Turra, Alexander

    2013-01-01

    The use of indirect estimates of ghost-crab populations to assess beach disturbance has several advantages, including non-destructiveness, ease and low cost, although this strategy may add some degree of noise to estimates of population parameters. Resolution of these shortcomings may allow wider use of these populations as an indicator of differences in quality among beaches. This study analyzed to what extent the number of crab burrows may diverge from the number of animals, considering beach morphology, burrow depth and signs of occupation as contributing factors or indicators of a higher or lower occupation rate. We estimated the occupation rate of crabs in burrows on nine low-use beaches, which were previously categorized as dissipative, intermediate or reflexive. Three random 2-m-wide transects were laid perpendicular to the shoreline, where burrows were counted and excavated to search for crabs. The depth and signs of recent activity around the burrows were also recorded. The occupation rate differed on the different beaches, but morphodynamics was not identified as a grouping factor. A considerable number of burrows that lacked signs of recent activity proved to be occupied, and the proportions of these burrows also differed among beaches. Virtually all burrows less than 10 cm deep were unoccupied; the occupation rate tended to increase gradually to a burrow depth of 20–35 cm. Other methods (water, smoke, and traps) were applied to measure the effectiveness of excavating as a method for burrow counts. Traps and excavation proved to be the best methods. These observations illustrate the possible degree of unreliability of comparisons of beaches based on indirect measures. Combining burrow depth assessment with surrounding signs of occupation proved to be a useful tool to minimize biases. PMID:24376748

  10. Influence of a burrowing, metal-tolerant polychaete on benthic metabolism, denitrification and nitrogen regeneration in contaminated estuarine sediments.

    PubMed

    Banks, Joanne L; Ross, D Jeff; Keough, Michael J; Macleod, Catriona K; Keane, John; Eyre, Bradley D

    2013-03-15

    We investigated the effects of the burrowing cirratulid polychaete Cirriformia filigera (Delle Chiaje, 1828) on benthic respiration and nitrogen regeneration in metal-contaminated estuarine sediments using laboratory mesocosms. C. filigera is a dominant component of assemblages in the most severely contaminated sediments within the Derwent estuary, southern Australia. In the presence of C. filigera sediment O2 consumption doubled, with approximately 55% of this increase due to their respiration and the remaining 45% attributable to oxidation reactions and increased microbial respiration associated with burrow walls. Combined NO3 and NO2 fluxes were unaffected. The addition of labile organic matter did not affect benthic fluxes, in the presence or absence of C. filigera, presumably due to the short timeframe of the experiment and naturally enriched test sediments. The results suggest that a combination of tolerance and burrowing activity enables this species to provide an ecosystem service in the removal of N from contaminated sites. PMID:23398743

  11. Estimating animal populations and body sizes from burrows: Marine ecologists have their heads buried in the sand

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schlacher, Thomas A.; Lucrezi, Serena; Peterson, Charles H.; Connolly, Rod M.; Olds, Andrew D.; Althaus, Franziska; Hyndes, Glenn A.; Maslo, Brooke; Gilby, Ben L.; Leon, Javier X.; Weston, Michael A.; Lastra, Mariano; Williams, Alan; Schoeman, David S.

    2016-06-01

    Most ecological studies require knowledge of animal abundance, but it can be challenging and destructive of habitat to obtain accurate density estimates for cryptic species, such as crustaceans that tunnel deeply into the seafloor, beaches, or mudflats. Such fossorial species are, however, widely used in environmental impact assessments, requiring sampling techniques that are reliable, efficient, and environmentally benign for these species and environments. Counting and measuring the entrances of burrows made by cryptic species is commonly employed to index population and body sizes of individuals. The fundamental premise is that burrow metrics consistently predict density and size. Here we review the evidence for this premise. We also review criteria for selecting among sampling methods: burrow counts, visual censuses, and physical collections. A simple 1:1 correspondence between the number of holes and population size cannot be assumed. Occupancy rates, indexed by the slope of regression models, vary widely between species and among sites for the same species. Thus, 'average' or 'typical' occupancy rates should not be extrapolated from site- or species specific field validations and then be used as conversion factors in other situations. Predictions of organism density made from burrow counts often have large uncertainty, being double to half of the predicted mean value. Whether such prediction uncertainty is 'acceptable' depends on investigators' judgements regarding the desired detectable effect sizes. Regression models predicting body size from burrow entrance dimensions are more precise, but parameter estimates of most models are specific to species and subject to site-to-site variation within species. These results emphasise the need to undertake thorough field validations of indirect census techniques that include tests of how sensitive predictive models are to changes in habitat conditions or human impacts. In addition, new technologies (e.g. drones

  12. Flea fitness is reduced by high fractional concentrations of CO₂ that simulate levels found in their hosts' burrows.

    PubMed

    Downs, Cynthia J; Pinshow, Berry; Khokhlova, Irina S; Krasnov, Boris R

    2015-11-01

    Nidicolous ectoparasites such as fleas and gamasid mites that feed on small and medium-sized mammals spend much of their time in their hosts' burrows, which provide an environment for living, and often feeding, to their pre-imaginal and/or adult stages. Thus, these ectoparasites should be adapted to environmental conditions in burrows, including high fractional concentrations of CO2 (F(CO2)). We examined how a high F(CO2) (0.04) affected survival and reproductive success of a hematophagous ectoparasite of burrowing rodents using fleas Xenopsylla ramesis and Sundevall's jirds Meriones crassus. In the first experiment, fleas fed on hosts housed in high-CO2 (F(CO2) =0.04) or atmospheric-CO2 (F(CO2) ≈0.0004) air, and were allowed to breed. In a second experiment, fleas were maintained in high CO2 or CO2-free air with no hosts to determine how CO2 levels affect survival and activity levels. We found that at high F(CO2) fleas laid fewer eggs, reducing reproductive success. In addition, at high F(CO2), activity levels and survival of fleas were reduced. Our results indicate that fleas do not perform well in the F(CO2) used in this experiment. Previous research indicated that the type and intensity of the effects of CO2 concentration on the fitness of an insect depend on the F(CO2) used, so we advise caution when generalizing inferences drawn to insects exposed to other F(CO2). If, however, F(CO2) found in natural mammal burrows brings about reduced fitness in fleas in general, then burrowing hosts may benefit from reduced parasite infestation if burrow air F(CO2) is high. PMID:26582933

  13. Traces and burrowing behaviors of the Cicada nymph Cicadetta calliope: Neoichnology and paleoecological significance of extant soil-dwelling insects

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Smith, J.J.; Hasiotis, S.T.

    2008-01-01

    This study documents the traces and burrowing behaviors of nymphs of the prairie cicada Cicadetta calliope (Hemiptera: Cicadidae), as observed in neoichnological experiments. Cicada nymphs were collected from the C horizons of sandy Fluvents along the Kansas River east of Lawrence, Kansas. The nymphs appeared to be fifth instars, 13-17 mm long and 6-7 mm wide. Nymphs were placed in plastic enclosures containing layers of colored, moist, very fine-grained sand. They burrowed immediately, excavating air-filled, sediment-enclosed cells between 20 mm and 40 mm long and averaging 9 mm wide. Burrowing was completed in three stages: (1) sediment in the forward portion of the cell was excavated and rolled into a ball with the forelimbs; (2) the nymph turned 180?? using a forward roll, and moved to the back of the cell; and (3) the sediment ball was pushed up against the back wall of the cell and kneaded with the forelimbs into a thin layer. Resulting burrow traces are sinuous and distinctly meniscate and demonstrate that insect larvae construct meniscate, backfilled burrows in well-drained terrestrial settings. Cicadetta calliope nymphs and their traces are excellent analogs for meniscate trace fossils commonly found in late Paleozoic-Cenozoic alluvial deposits and paleosols. Such meniscate trace fossils are useful for interpreting the paleoenvironment and paleohydrogeology of the units in which they are found. In addition, such backfilled burrows can be used to supplement the fossil record of cicada-like hemipterans, currently known only from the latest Permian to the Early Triassic. Copyright ?? 2008, SEPM (Society for Sedimentary Geology).

  14. Measuring the contribution of benthic ecosystem engineering species to the ecosystem services of an estuary: A case study of burrowing shrimps in Yaquina Estuary, Oregon

    EPA Science Inventory

    Burrowing shrimps are regarded as ecosystem engineering species in many coastal ecosystems worldwide, including numerous estuaries of the west coast of North America (Baja California to British Columbia). In estuaries of the U.S. Pacific Northwest, two species of large burrowing...

  15. Measuring the contribution of benthic ecosystem engineering species to the ecosystem services of an estuary: A case study of burrowing shrimps in Yaquina Estuary, Oregon - April 2009

    EPA Science Inventory

    Burrowing shrimps are regarded as ecosystem engineering species in many coastal ecosystems worldwide, including numerous estuaries of the west coast of North America (Baja California to British Columbia). In estuaries of the U.S. Pacific Northwest, two species of large burrowing...

  16. Artificial Warthog Burrows Used to Sample Adult and Immature Tsetse (Glossina spp) in the Zambezi Valley of Zimbabwe

    PubMed Central

    Hargrove, John W.; Muzari, M. Odwell

    2015-01-01

    Background The biology of adult tsetse (Glossina spp), vectors of trypanosomiasis in Africa, has been extensively studied – but little is known about larviposition in the field. Methodology/Principal Findings In September-November 1998, in the hot-dry season in Zimbabwe’s Zambezi Valley, we used artificial warthog burrows to capture adult females as they deposited larvae. Females were subjected to ovarian dissection and were defined as perinatal flies, assumed to have entered burrows to larviposit, if oocyte sizes indicated >95% pregnancy completion. Perinatal flies were defined as full-term pregnant if there was a late third instar larva in utero, or postpartum if the uterus was empty. All other females were defined as pre-full-term pregnant (pre-FT). Of 845 G. m. morsitans captured, 91% (765) were female and 295/724 (41%) of females dissected were perinatal flies. By contrast, of 2805 G. pallidipes captured only 71% (2003) were female and only 33% (596/1825) of females were perinatal. Among all perinatal females 67% (596/891) were G. pallidipes. Conversely, in burrows not fitted with traps – such that flies were free to come and go – 1834 (59%) of pupae deposited were G. m. morsitans and only 1297 (41%) were G. pallidipes. Thus, while more full-term pregnant G. pallidipes enter burrows, greater proportions of G. m. morsitans larviposit in them, reflecting a greater discrimination among G. pallidipes in choosing larviposition sites. Catches of males and pre-FT females increased strongly with temperatures above 32°C, indicating that these flies used burrows as refuges from high ambient temperatures. Conversely, catches of perinatal females changed little with maximum temperature but declined from late September through November: females may anticipate that burrows will be inundated during the forthcoming wet season. Ovarian age distributions of perinatal and pre-FT females were similar, consistent with all ages of females larvipositing in burrows with

  17. Burrowing hard corals occurring on the sea floor since 80 million years ago.

    PubMed

    Sentoku, Asuka; Tokuda, Yuki; Ezaki, Yoichi

    2016-01-01

    We describe a previously unknown niche for hard corals in the small, bowl-shaped, solitary scleractinian, Deltocyathoides orientalis (Family Turbinoliidae), on soft-bottom substrates. Observational experiments were used to clarify how the sea floor niche is exploited by turbinoliids. Deltocyathoides orientalis is adapted to an infaunal mode of life and exhibits behaviours associated with automobility that include burrowing into sediments, vertical movement through sediments to escape burial, and recovery of an upright position after being overturned. These behaviours were achieved through repeated expansion and contraction of their peripheral soft tissues, which constitute a unique muscle-membrane system. Histological analysis showed that these muscle arrangements were associated with deeply incised inter-costal spaces characteristic of turbinoliid corals. The oldest known turbinoliid, Bothrophoria ornata, which occurred in the Cretaceous (Campanian), also possessed a small, conical skeleton with highly developed costae. An infaunal mode of life became available to turbinoliids due to the acquisition of automobility through the muscle-membrane system at least 80 million years ago. The newly discovered active burrowing strategies described herein provide new insights into the use of an unattached mode of life by corals inhabiting soft-bottom substrates throughout the Phanerozoic. PMID:27074813

  18. Field evaluation of carbon dioxide baits for sampling Ornithodoros turicata (Acari: Argasidae) in gopher tortoise burrows.

    PubMed

    Adeyeye, O A; Butler, J F

    1991-01-01

    Field studies were conducted to assess the reliability of carbon dioxide baits in sampling Ornithodoros turicata Duges. Tick response to about 50 g of dry ice placed at various distances away from tick-infested burrows was monitored over a 2-h period. In addition, tick attraction to different flow rates of carbon dioxide was monitored. Tests were conducted over a 15-mo period, during which seasonal effects on O. turicata response to CO2 were assessed. The efficacy of the baits was evaluated at night and in daytime. Ticks responded to dry ice baits placed up to 8 m away from the burrows. There was no significant difference in the total number of ticks attracted in a 1-h period using 500 to 2,000 ml CO2/min. At night, ticks were attracted to CO2 bits throughout the year except in December and January. By contrast, ticks were attracted to CO2 baits during daytime only between May and mid-December. PMID:1903452

  19. The antenna of a burrowing dragonfly larva, Onychogomphus forcipatus (Anisoptera, Gomphidae).

    PubMed

    Rebora, Manuela; Piersanti, Silvana; Salerno, Gianandrea; Gorb, Stanislav

    2015-11-01

    The larva of the dragonfly Onychogomphus forcipatus (Anisoptera, Gomphidae) has a burrowing lifestyle and antennae composed of four short and broad segments (scape, pedicel and a two-segmented flagellum). The present ultrastructural investigation revealed that different sensilla and one gland are located on the antenna. There is a great diversity of mechanoreceptors of different kinds. In particular club-shaped sensilla, sensilla chaetica, and tree-like sensilla show the typical structure of bristles, the most common type of mechanoreceptors, usually responding to direct touch, while numerous long thin thorny trichoid sensilla show a morphology recalling the structure of filiform hair mechanoreceptors. The latter ones are presumably important in larval Odonata for current detection and rheotactic orientation, especially in a burrowing species. On the smooth apical cuticle of the second flagellar segment, three structures are visible: (1) a small ellipsoidal pit hosting a convoluted peg, the morphology of which resembles that of a typical chemoreceptor (even if pores are lacking), (2) a couple of small pits (not investigated under TEM), and (3) one wide depression with spherical structures, the internal morphology of which lets us assume that it is a gland with unknown function. This is the first report of an antennal gland in palaeopteran insects. PMID:26113430

  20. Real estate ads in Emei music frog vocalizations: female preference for calls emanating from burrows.

    PubMed

    Cui, Jianguo; Tang, Yezhong; Narins, Peter M

    2012-06-23

    During female mate choice, both the male's phenotype and resources (e.g. his nest) contribute to the chooser's fitness. Animals other than humans are not known to advertise resource characteristics to potential mates through vocal communication; although in some species of anurans and birds, females do evaluate male qualities through vocal communication. Here, we demonstrate that calls of the male Emei music frog (Babina dauchina), vocalizing from male-built nests, reflect nest structure information that can be recognized by females. Inside-nest calls consisted of notes with energy concentrated at lower frequency ranges and longer note durations when compared with outside-nest calls. Centre frequencies and note durations of the inside calls positively correlate with the area of the burrow entrance and the depth of the burrow, respectively. When given a choice between outside and inside calls played back alternately, more than 70 per cent of the females (33/47) chose inside calls. These results demonstrate that males of this species faithfully advertise whether or not they possess a nest to potential mates by vocal communication, which probably facilitates optimal mate selection by females. These results revealed a novel function of advertisement calls, which is consistent with the wide variation in both call complexity and social behaviour within amphibians. PMID:22158736

  1. Genetic adaptations of the plateau zokor in high-elevation burrows.

    PubMed

    Shao, Yong; Li, Jin-Xiu; Ge, Ri-Li; Zhong, Li; Irwin, David M; Murphy, Robert W; Zhang, Ya-Ping

    2015-01-01

    The plateau zokor (Myospalax baileyi) spends its entire life underground in sealed burrows. Confronting limited oxygen and high carbon dioxide concentrations, and complete darkness, they epitomize a successful physiological adaptation. Here, we employ transcriptome sequencing to explore the genetic underpinnings of their adaptations to this unique habitat. Compared to Rattus norvegicus, genes belonging to GO categories related to energy metabolism (e.g. mitochondrion and fatty acid beta-oxidation) underwent accelerated evolution in the plateau zokor. Furthermore, the numbers of positively selected genes were significantly enriched in the gene categories involved in ATPase activity, blood vessel development and respiratory gaseous exchange, functional categories that are relevant to adaptation to high altitudes. Among the 787 genes with evidence of parallel evolution, and thus identified as candidate genes, several GO categories (e.g. response to hypoxia, oxygen homeostasis and erythrocyte homeostasis) are significantly enriched, are two genes, EPAS1 and AJUBA, involved in the response to hypoxia, where the parallel evolved sites are at positions that are highly conserved in sequence alignments from multiple species. Thus, accelerated evolution of GO categories, positive selection and parallel evolution at the molecular level provide evidences to parse the genetic adaptations of the plateau zokor for living in high-elevation burrows. PMID:26602147

  2. Genetic adaptations of the plateau zokor in high-elevation burrows

    PubMed Central

    Shao, Yong; Li, Jin-Xiu; Ge, Ri-Li; Zhong, Li; Irwin, David M.; Murphy, Robert W.; Zhang, Ya-Ping

    2015-01-01

    The plateau zokor (Myospalax baileyi) spends its entire life underground in sealed burrows. Confronting limited oxygen and high carbon dioxide concentrations, and complete darkness, they epitomize a successful physiological adaptation. Here, we employ transcriptome sequencing to explore the genetic underpinnings of their adaptations to this unique habitat. Compared to Rattus norvegicus, genes belonging to GO categories related to energy metabolism (e.g. mitochondrion and fatty acid beta-oxidation) underwent accelerated evolution in the plateau zokor. Furthermore, the numbers of positively selected genes were significantly enriched in the gene categories involved in ATPase activity, blood vessel development and respiratory gaseous exchange, functional categories that are relevant to adaptation to high altitudes. Among the 787 genes with evidence of parallel evolution, and thus identified as candidate genes, several GO categories (e.g. response to hypoxia, oxygen homeostasis and erythrocyte homeostasis) are significantly enriched, are two genes, EPAS1 and AJUBA, involved in the response to hypoxia, where the parallel evolved sites are at positions that are highly conserved in sequence alignments from multiple species. Thus, accelerated evolution of GO categories, positive selection and parallel evolution at the molecular level provide evidences to parse the genetic adaptations of the plateau zokor for living in high-elevation burrows. PMID:26602147

  3. Interactive effects of prey and p,p'-DDE on burrowing owl population dynamics.

    PubMed

    Gervais, Jennifer A; Hunter, Christine M; Anthony, Robert G

    2006-04-01

    We used population models to explore the effects of the organochlorine contaminant p,p'-DDE and fluctuations in vole availability on the population dynamics of Burrowing Owls (Athene cunicularia). Previous work indicated an interaction between low biomass of voles in the diet and moderate levels of p,p'-DDE in Burrowing Owl eggs that led to reproductive impairment. We constructed periodic and stochastic matrix models that incorporated three vole population states observed in the field: average, peak, and crash years. We modeled varying frequencies of vole crash years and a range of impairment of owl demographic rates in vole crash years. Vole availability had a greater impact on owl population growth rate than did reproductive impairment if vole populations peaked and crashed frequently. However, this difference disappeared as the frequency of vole crash years declined to once per decade. Fecundity, the demographic rate most affected by p,p'-DDE, had less impact on population growth rate than adult or juvenile survival. A life table response experiment of time-invariant matrices for average, peak, and crash vole conditions showed that low population growth under vole crash conditions was due to low adult and juvenile survival rates, whereas the extremely high population growth under vole peak conditions was due to increased fecundity. Our results suggest that even simple models can provide useful insights into complex ecological interactions. This is particularly valuable when temporal or spatial scales preclude manipulative experimental work in the field or laboratory. PMID:16711053

  4. Burrowing hard corals occurring on the sea floor since 80 million years ago

    PubMed Central

    Sentoku, Asuka; Tokuda, Yuki; Ezaki, Yoichi

    2016-01-01

    We describe a previously unknown niche for hard corals in the small, bowl-shaped, solitary scleractinian, Deltocyathoides orientalis (Family Turbinoliidae), on soft-bottom substrates. Observational experiments were used to clarify how the sea floor niche is exploited by turbinoliids. Deltocyathoides orientalis is adapted to an infaunal mode of life and exhibits behaviours associated with automobility that include burrowing into sediments, vertical movement through sediments to escape burial, and recovery of an upright position after being overturned. These behaviours were achieved through repeated expansion and contraction of their peripheral soft tissues, which constitute a unique muscle-membrane system. Histological analysis showed that these muscle arrangements were associated with deeply incised inter-costal spaces characteristic of turbinoliid corals. The oldest known turbinoliid, Bothrophoria ornata, which occurred in the Cretaceous (Campanian), also possessed a small, conical skeleton with highly developed costae. An infaunal mode of life became available to turbinoliids due to the acquisition of automobility through the muscle-membrane system at least 80 million years ago. The newly discovered active burrowing strategies described herein provide new insights into the use of an unattached mode of life by corals inhabiting soft-bottom substrates throughout the Phanerozoic. PMID:27074813

  5. Effectiveness of voluntary habitat stewardship in conserving grassland: case of operation burrowing owl in Saskatchewan.

    PubMed

    Warnock, Robert G; Skeel, Margaret A

    2004-03-01

    There have been no published performance evaluations of nongovernmental, voluntary habitat stewardship programs. The Operation Burrowing Owl (OBO) stewardship program, initiated in 1987, was evaluated for its effectiveness in conservation of grassland habitat during 1986-1993. The 108 OBO sites from 1987 to 88 and 98 randomly selected non-OBO sites that were grassland in 1986 in the Regina-Weyburn, Saskatchewan study area were classified by size and agricultural soil suitability. By 1993, 41 (38%) of the 108 OBO sites had been withdrawn from the program. The 1986 area of grassland was compared with grassland area calculated from digitized 1993 LANDSAT imagery. A correction for satellite inaccuracies was determined. Grassland retention in 1993 was significantly higher at OBO sites (66%) than at random sites (49%), demonstrating that the OBO voluntary program effectively conserved habitat. Also, grassland retention was significantly lower on sites with better agricultural soils, and for sites <12 ha in size. Site type (OBO or random), size and their interaction, followed by agricultural soil suitability, had the greatest effects on grassland retention. During an era of accelerated grassland loss, OBO strongly and positively (statistically significant) affected conservation of grassland sites most at risk: sites <12 ha in size and with good to excellent agricultural soils. This suggests that grassland conservation efforts focus on vulnerable sites (small size and/or good agricultural soils) to provide nesting habitat for burrowing owls. Our study demonstrates that a voluntary stewardship program can significantly increase conservation of habitat. PMID:15037954

  6. Geomys bursars burrowing patterns: influence of season and food patch structure

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Andersen, Douglas C.

    1987-01-01

    The relationship between belowground food resources and the pattern and pace of soil excavation by Geomys bursarius, the plains pocket gopher, was assessed during spring and autumn using replicated 18 x 18 m enclosures containing uniform arrays of food plants (Daucus carota) at spacings assumed to result in burrowing being energetically profitable (25 and 50 cm) or unprofitable (100 cm and empty). Soil excavation rate, measured in terms of either daily additions to tunnel length or volume, or the maximum volume excavated during a 3-d interval, varied greatly among individuals. No significant effect due to season or density of belowground plant biomass was detected when burrowing was profitable. Individuals readily initiated aboveground travel in unprofitable treatments. Soil bulk density was negatively related and animal body mass positively related to excavation rate. Individuals deposited from 41 to 87% of excavated soil on the ground surface; the remainder was used to backfill previously created tunnels or chambers. Plant size, but not plant spacing, affected the ratio of the volumes deposited aboveground and belowground. There was no evidence that animals in enclosures disturbed soil in a manner quantitatively or qualitatively different from free-ranging adults. The large proportions and absolute quantities (up to 30 L/d) of soil involved suggest that backfilling may affect ecosystem structure and functioning as much as surface mound-building.

  7. The Brain on Stress: Insight from Studies Using the Visible Burrow System

    PubMed Central

    McEwen, Bruce S.; McKittrick, Christina R.; Tamashiro, Kellie L. K.; Sakai, Randall R.

    2016-01-01

    The discovery of adrenal steroid receptors outside of the hypothalamus in the hippocampus and other forebrain regions catalyzed research on the effects of stress upon cognitive function, emotions and self-regulatory behaviors as well as the molecular, cellular and neuroanatomical mechanisms underlying acute and chronic stress effects on the brain. Indeed, this work has shown that the brain is a plastic and vulnerable organ in the face of acute and chronic stress. The insight that Bob and Caroline Blanchard had in developing and interpreting findings using the Visible Burrow System model made an enormous contribution to the current view that the human brain is very sensitive to the social environment and to agonistic interactions between individuals. Their collaboration with Sakai and McEwen at The Rockefeller University extended application of the Visible Burrow System model to demonstrate that it also was a unique and highly relevant neuroethological model with which to study stress and adaptation to stressors. Those studies focused on the brain and systemic organ responses to stress and, in turn, described that the brain is also very responsive to changes in systemic physiology. PMID:26066722

  8. Real estate ads in Emei music frog vocalizations: female preference for calls emanating from burrows

    PubMed Central

    Cui, Jianguo; Tang, Yezhong; Narins, Peter M.

    2012-01-01

    During female mate choice, both the male's phenotype and resources (e.g. his nest) contribute to the chooser's fitness. Animals other than humans are not known to advertise resource characteristics to potential mates through vocal communication; although in some species of anurans and birds, females do evaluate male qualities through vocal communication. Here, we demonstrate that calls of the male Emei music frog (Babina dauchina), vocalizing from male-built nests, reflect nest structure information that can be recognized by females. Inside-nest calls consisted of notes with energy concentrated at lower frequency ranges and longer note durations when compared with outside-nest calls. Centre frequencies and note durations of the inside calls positively correlate with the area of the burrow entrance and the depth of the burrow, respectively. When given a choice between outside and inside calls played back alternately, more than 70 per cent of the females (33/47) chose inside calls. These results demonstrate that males of this species faithfully advertise whether or not they possess a nest to potential mates by vocal communication, which probably facilitates optimal mate selection by females. These results revealed a novel function of advertisement calls, which is consistent with the wide variation in both call complexity and social behaviour within amphibians. PMID:22158736

  9. Chronic fluoxetine exposure alters movement and burrowing in adult freshwater mussels.

    PubMed

    Hazelton, Peter D; Du, Bowen; Haddad, Samuel P; Fritts, Andrea K; Chambliss, C Kevin; Brooks, Bryan W; Bringolf, Robert B

    2014-06-01

    The antidepressant fluoxetine is commonly found in aquatic fauna living near or downstream from point-sources of municipal waste effluent. Continuous release of fluoxetine results in increased effective exposure duration in surface waters, resulting in a chronic exposure for animals downstream, particularly in effluent dominated ecosystems. Fluoxetine is known to cause disruptions in reproductive behavior of freshwater mussels (order Unionoida), including stimulating release of gametes, parturition of glochidia (larvae), and changes in lure display and foot protrusion. However, the ecological relevance of these effects at environmental concentrations is unknown. We conducted a 67-d exposure of adult Lampsilis fasciola to fluoxetine concentrations of 0, 0.5, 2.5, and 22.3μg/L and assessed impacts on behavior (lateral movement, burrowing, and filtering) and metabolism (glycogen storage and respiration). Mussels treated with 2.5 and 22.3μg/L fluoxetine displayed mantle lures significantly (p<0.05) more than controls. Animals treated with 22.3μg/L fluoxetine were statistically more likely to have shorter time-to-movement, greater total movement, and initiate burrowing sooner than control animals. These observations suggest that increased activity of mussels exposed to fluoxetine may result in increased susceptibility to predators and may lead to a reduction in energy stores. PMID:24438840

  10. Can pocket gopher burrowing explain the long-term evolution of uplifted marine terrace scarps?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Loso, M. G.; Anderson, R. S.; Doak, D. F.

    2009-12-01

    For over a century, geomorphologists have sought to understand and model the mechanisms that control long-term evolution of soil-mantled hillslopes. Early workers acknowledged the importance of biological processes like soil anchoring by plant roots and bioturbation by burrowing animals, but only recently have substantial efforts been made to incorporate these factors into quantitative models. Several of these recent efforts have focused on the effects of burrowing by pocket gophers (Thomomys bottae). Field studies have documented the impressive volumes of sediment moved by these common fossorial mammals, and hillslope evolution models that implicitly reflect gopher activity (for example in sediment transport equations that are nonlinear functions of slope and soil depth) are increasingly successful in reproducing the steady-state form of gophered landscapes. But are gopher burrows simply one among many effective slope transport processes, or in some landscapes might they be—as some have suggested—the primary agent of sediment transport? To answer this question, we use a combination of field measurements, published data, and numerical modeling to determine whether modern rates of gopher-induced sediment transport are sufficient, over the long-term, to explain the observed evolution of scarps that separate a flight of four tectonically uplifted marine terraces north of Santa Cruz, California. The terraces are well-dated and the initial forms of the scarps—all former sea cliffs—are well constrained. We use two numerical models: a small-scale mound model that calculates the slope-dependent transport of sediment by a single gopher burrow, and a large-scale hillslope model that relies on a given distribution of gopher mounds to simulate the long-term evolution of these scarps from rocky sea cliffs to gentle, soil-mantled hillslopes. Our mound model accounts for the orientation and dimensions of a subterranean foraging tunnel and its associated