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Sample records for abundant tick species

  1. The abundance of Ixodes ricinus ticks depends on tree species composition and shrub cover.

    PubMed

    Tack, W; Madder, M; Baeten, L; De Frenne, P; Verheyen, K

    2012-09-01

    The mainstream forestry policy in many European countries is to convert coniferous plantations into (semi-natural) deciduous woodlands. However, woodlands are the main habitat for Ixodes ricinus ticks. Therefore, assessing to what extent tick abundance and infection with Borrelia spirochetes are affected by forest composition and structure is a prerequisite for effective prevention of Lyme borreliosis. We selected a total of 25 pine and oak stands, both with and without an abundant shrub layer, in northern Belgium and estimated tick abundance between April and October 2008-2010. Additionally, the presence of deer beds was used as an indicator of relative deer habitat use. Borrelia infections in questing nymphs were determined by polymerase chain reactions. The abundance of larvae, nymphs, and adults was higher in oak stands compared to pine stands and increased with increasing shrub cover, most likely due to differences in habitat use by the ticks' main hosts. Whereas tick abundance was markedly higher in structure-rich oak stands compared to homogeneous pine stands, the Borrelia infection rates in nymphs did not differ significantly. Our results indicate that conversion towards structure-rich deciduous forests might create more suitable tick habitats, but we were unable to detect an effect on the infection rate.

  2. Effects of wildlife and cattle on tick abundance in central Kenya.

    PubMed

    Keesing, Felicia; Allan, Brian F; Young, Truman P; Ostfeld, Richard S

    2013-09-01

    In African savannas, large mammals, both wild and domestic, support an abundant and diverse population of tick ectoparasites. Because of the density of ticks and the many pathogens that they vector, cattle in East Africa are often treated with acaricides. While acaricides are known to be effective at reducing tick burdens on cattle, their effects on the overall abundance and community composition of ticks in savanna ecosystems are less well understood. It is also not known how well tick populations can be maintained in the absence of large mammals. We evaluated the effects of wildlife and of acaricide-treated cattle on host-seeking tick populations in a long-term, exclusion experiment in central Kenya. Over seven years, we sampled larval, nymphal, and adult ticks monthly on replicated treatment plots that controlled for the presence of cattle and for the presence of two guilds of large wild mammals: megaherbivores (giraffes and elephants) and all other large wild herbivores (> 15 kg). Two species of ticks were found in this habitat; across all surveys, 93% were Rhipicephalus pulchellus and 7% were R. praetextatus. The presence of acaricide-treated cattle dramatically reduced the abundance of host-seeking nymphal and adult ticks but did not affect the abundance of host-seeking larval ticks. The abundance of larval ticks was determined by the presence of large wild mammals, which appear to import gravid female ticks into the experimental plots. On plots with no large mammals, either wild or domestic, larval and nymphal ticks were rare. Adult R. pulchellus were most abundant in plots that allowed wildlife but excluded cattle. Adult R. praetextatus were relatively abundant in plots without any large mammals. These differences suggest that these ticks utilize different members of the host community. The reduction in ticks that results from the presence of acaricide-treated cattle has potential health benefits for humans and wildlife, but these benefits must be weighed

  3. Effects of wildlife and cattle on tick abundance in central Kenya.

    PubMed

    Keesing, Felicia; Allan, Brian F; Young, Truman P; Ostfeld, Richard S

    2013-09-01

    In African savannas, large mammals, both wild and domestic, support an abundant and diverse population of tick ectoparasites. Because of the density of ticks and the many pathogens that they vector, cattle in East Africa are often treated with acaricides. While acaricides are known to be effective at reducing tick burdens on cattle, their effects on the overall abundance and community composition of ticks in savanna ecosystems are less well understood. It is also not known how well tick populations can be maintained in the absence of large mammals. We evaluated the effects of wildlife and of acaricide-treated cattle on host-seeking tick populations in a long-term, exclusion experiment in central Kenya. Over seven years, we sampled larval, nymphal, and adult ticks monthly on replicated treatment plots that controlled for the presence of cattle and for the presence of two guilds of large wild mammals: megaherbivores (giraffes and elephants) and all other large wild herbivores (> 15 kg). Two species of ticks were found in this habitat; across all surveys, 93% were Rhipicephalus pulchellus and 7% were R. praetextatus. The presence of acaricide-treated cattle dramatically reduced the abundance of host-seeking nymphal and adult ticks but did not affect the abundance of host-seeking larval ticks. The abundance of larval ticks was determined by the presence of large wild mammals, which appear to import gravid female ticks into the experimental plots. On plots with no large mammals, either wild or domestic, larval and nymphal ticks were rare. Adult R. pulchellus were most abundant in plots that allowed wildlife but excluded cattle. Adult R. praetextatus were relatively abundant in plots without any large mammals. These differences suggest that these ticks utilize different members of the host community. The reduction in ticks that results from the presence of acaricide-treated cattle has potential health benefits for humans and wildlife, but these benefits must be weighed

  4. Tick species (Acari: Ixodida) in Antalya City, Turkey: species diversity and seasonal activity.

    PubMed

    Koc, Samed; Aydın, Levent; Cetin, Huseyin

    2015-07-01

    Ticks (Acari: Ixodida) are an important group of ectoparasites of vertebrates. Most species are known vectors of diseases including Lyme disease, Q fever, and Crimean-Congo hemorrhagic fever. A 3-year research was conducted in Antalya, Turkey, to determine tick species composition, seasonal abundance, and spatial distribution. The study was carried out in five districts (Aksu, Dosemealtı, Kepez, Konyaaltı, and Muratpasa) of Antalya Metropolitan Municipality area in Turkey, between May 2010 and May 2013, where 1393 tick specimens were collected from domestic and wild animals (cattle, goats, sheep, hedgehogs, tortoises, dogs, cats, chickens) and from the environment. The collected ticks were preserved in 70 % alcohol and then were identified. Five genus and eight hard and soft tick species were identified, including Argas persicus, Rhipicephalus annulatus, R. sanguineus, R. turanicus, Hyalomma aegyptium, H. marginatum, Haemaphysalis parva, and Dermacentor niveus. Rhipicephalus sanguineus, R. turanicus, and H. aegyptium were the most common tick species in Antalya city. Rhipicephalus turanicus and R. sanguineus were the most abundant tick species infesting dogs in the city. The hosts of H. aegyptium are primarily tortoises in Antalya. The results of this research will contribute to establishing appropriate measures to control tick infestations on animals and humans and their environment in the city of Antalya. PMID:25869959

  5. Shrub clearing adversely affects the abundance of Ixodes ricinus ticks.

    PubMed

    Tack, Wesley; Madder, Maxime; Baeten, Lander; Vanhellemont, Margot; Verheyen, Kris

    2013-07-01

    In order to get a better understanding of the importance of vertical forest structure as a component of Ixodes ricinus tick habitat, an experiment was set up in a coniferous forest on sandy soils in northern Belgium. Ticks were sampled in six control and six treatment plots on various sampling occasions in 2008-2010. In the course of the study period, a moderate thinning was carried out in all plots and shrub clearing was performed in the treatment plots. Thinning had no effect on tick abundance, while shrub clearing had an adverse affect on the abundance of all three life stages (larva, nymph, adult) up to 2 years post-clearing. Our findings are especially relevant in the light of the ongoing efforts to improve vertical forest structure in Belgium and many other parts of Europe, which might create suitable habitats for ticks and change the epidemiology of tick-borne diseases. Also, our results indicate that shrub clearing could be applied as a tick control measure in recreational areas where there is a high degree of human-tick contact.

  6. Prevalence of Rickettsia species in Dermacentor variabilis ticks from Ontario, Canada.

    PubMed

    Wood, Heidi; Dillon, Liz; Patel, Samir N; Ralevski, Filip

    2016-07-01

    Relatively little is known about the prevalence of rickettsial species in Dermacentor ticks in eastern Canada. In this study, Dermacentor ticks from the province of Ontario, Canada, were tested for the presence of spotted fever group rickettsial (SFGR) species, Coxiella burnetii and Francisella tularensis. Rickettsia rickettsii was not detected in any ticks tested, but R. montanensis was detected at a prevalence of 2.2% in D. variabilis (17/778). Two other SFGR species, R. parkeri and Candidatus R. andeanae, were detected individually in 2 Amblyomma maculatum ticks. Rickettsia peacockii, a non-pathogenic endosymbiont, was detected in two D. andersonii ticks. Given the highly abundant nature of D. variabilis, surveillance for human pathogens in this species of tick has important public health implications, but the lack of detection of known human pathogens indicates a low risk of infection via this tick species in Ontario. However, the detection of R. parkeri in an adventive A. maculatum tick indicates that health care providers should be aware of the possibility of spotted fever rickettsioses in individuals with a history of travel outside of Ontario and symptoms compatible with a spotted fever rickettsiosis. Coxiella burnetii and Francisella tularensis, human pathogens also potentially transmitted by D. variabilis, were not detected in a subset of the ticks. PMID:27318438

  7. Ixodid and Argasid Tick Species and West Nile Virus

    PubMed Central

    Uzcátegui, Nathalie Yumari; Gould, Ernest Andrew; Nuttall, Patricia Anne

    2004-01-01

    Control of West Nile virus (WNV) can only be effective if the vectors and reservoirs of the virus are identified and controlled. Although mosquitoes are the primary vectors, WNV has repeatedly been isolated from ticks. Therefore tick-borne transmission studies were performed with an ixodid (Ixodes ricinus) and an argasid tick species (Ornithodoros moubata). Both species became infected after feeding upon viremic hosts, but I. ricinus ticks were unable to maintain the virus. In contrast, O. moubata ticks were infected for at least 132 days, and the infection was maintained through molting and a second bloodmeal. Infected O. moubata ticks transmitted the virus to rodent hosts, albeit at a low level. Moreover, the virus was nonsystemically transmitted between infected and uninfected O. moubata ticks co-fed upon uninfected hosts. Although ticks are unlikely to play a major role in WNV transmission, our findings suggest that some species have the potential to act as reservoirs for the virus. PMID:15200855

  8. Ticks

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Ginsberg, H.S.; Faulde, M.K.

    2008-01-01

    The most common vector-borne diseases in both Europe and North America are transmitted by ticks. Lyme borreliosis (LB), a tick-borne bacterial zoonosis, is the most highly prevalent. Other important tick-borne diseases include TBE (tick-borne encephalitis) and Crimean-Congo haemorrhagic fever in Europe, Rocky Mountain spotted fever (RMSF) in North America, and numerous less common tick-borne bacterial, viral, and protozoan diseases on both continents. The major etiological agent of LB is Borrelia burgdorferi in North America, while in Europe several related species of Borrelia can also cause human illness. These Borrelia genospecies differ in clinical manifestations, ecology (for example, some have primarily avian and others primarily mammalian reservoirs), and transmission cycles, so the epizootiology of LB is more complex in Europe than in North America. Ticks dwell predominantly in woodlands and meadows, and in association with animal hosts, with only limited colonization of human dwellings by a few species. Therefore, suburbanization has contributed substantially to the increase in tick-borne disease transmission in North America by fostering increased exposure of humans to tick habitat. The current trend toward suburbanization in Europe could potentially result in similar increases in transmission of tick-borne diseases. Incidence of tick-borne diseases can be lowered by active public education campaigns, targeted at the times and places of greatest potential for encounter between humans and infected ticks. Similarly, vaccines (e.g., against TBE) are most effective when made available to people at greatest risk, and for high-prevalence diseases such as LB. Consultation with vector-borne disease experts during the planning stages of new human developments can minimize the potential for residents to encounter infected ticks (e.g., by appropriate dwelling and landscape design). Furthermore, research on tick vectors, pathogens, transmission ecology, and on

  9. Rickettsia species in ticks removed from humans in Istanbul, Turkey.

    PubMed

    Gargili, Aysen; Palomar, Ana M; Midilli, Kenan; Portillo, Aránzazu; Kar, Sırrı; Oteo, José A

    2012-11-01

    A total of 167 ticks collected from humans in Istanbul (Turkey) in 2006 were screened for Rickettsia species, and nested PCRs targeting gltA and ompA rickettsial fragment genes were carried out. Rickettsia monacensis (51), R. aeschlimannii (8), R. conorii subsp. conorii (3), R. helvetica (2), R. raoultii (1), R. africae (1), R. felis (1), and other Rickettsia spp. (2), were detected. To our knowledge, these Rickettsia species (except R. conorii) had never been reported in ticks removed from humans in Turkey. The presence of R. africae also had not been previously described, either in Hyalomma ticks or in any European tick species. In addition, R. aeschlimannii and R. felis had not been found associated with Rhipicephalus bursa specimens. The presence of human pathogenic Rickettsia in ticks removed from humans provides information about the risk of tick-borne rickettsioses in Turkey.

  10. Adverse moisture events predict seasonal abundance of Lyme disease vector ticks (Ixodes scapularis)

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background Lyme borreliosis (LB) is the most commonly reported vector-borne disease in north temperate regions worldwide, affecting an estimated 300,000 people annually in the United States alone. The incidence of LB is correlated with human exposure to its vector, the blacklegged tick (Ixodes scapularis). To date, attempts to model tick encounter risk based on environmental parameters have been equivocal. Previous studies have not considered (1) the differences between relative humidity (RH) in leaf litter and at weather stations, (2) the RH threshold that affects nymphal blacklegged tick survival, and (3) the time required below the threshold to induce mortality. We clarify the association between environmental moisture and tick survival by presenting a significant relationship between the total number of tick adverse moisture events (TAMEs - calculated as microclimatic periods below a RH threshold) and tick abundance each year. Methods We used a 14-year continuous statewide tick surveillance database and corresponding weather data from Rhode Island (RI), USA, to assess the effects of TAMEs on nymphal populations of I. scapularis. These TAMEs were defined as extended periods of time (>8 h below 82% RH in leaf litter). We fit a sigmoid curve comparing weather station data to those collected by loggers placed in tick habitats to estimate RH experienced by nymphal ticks, and compiled the number of historical TAMEs during the 14-year record. Results The total number of TAMEs in June of each year was negatively related to total seasonal nymphal tick densities, suggesting that sub-threshold humidity episodes >8 h in duration naturally lowered nymphal blacklegged tick abundance. Furthermore, TAMEs were positively related to the ratio of tick abundance early in the season when compared to late season, suggesting that lower than average tick abundance for a given year resulted from tick mortality and not from other factors. Conclusions Our results clarify the mechanism

  11. Decreased small mammal and on-host tick abundance in association with invasive red imported fire ants (Solenopsis invicta).

    PubMed

    Castellanos, Adrian A; Medeiros, Matthew C I; Hamer, Gabriel L; Morrow, Michael E; Eubanks, Micky D; Teel, Pete D; Hamer, Sarah A; Light, Jessica E

    2016-09-01

    Invasive species may impact pathogen transmission by altering the distributions and interactions among native vertebrate reservoir hosts and arthropod vectors. Here, we examined the direct and indirect effects of the red imported fire ant (Solenopsis invicta) on the native tick, small mammal and pathogen community in southeast Texas. Using a replicated large-scale field manipulation study, we show that small mammals were more abundant on treatment plots where S. invicta populations were experimentally reduced. Our analysis of ticks on small mammal hosts demonstrated a threefold increase in the ticks caught per unit effort on treatment relative to control plots, and elevated tick loads (a 27-fold increase) on one common rodent species. We detected only one known human pathogen (Rickettsia parkeri), present in 1.4% of larvae and 6.7% of nymph on-host Amblyomma maculatum samples but with no significant difference between treatment and control plots. Given that host and vector population dynamics are key drivers of pathogen transmission, the reduced small mammal and tick abundance associated with S. invicta may alter pathogen transmission dynamics over broader spatial scales. PMID:27651533

  12. Decreased small mammal and on-host tick abundance in association with invasive red imported fire ants (Solenopsis invicta)

    PubMed Central

    Medeiros, Matthew C. I.; Hamer, Gabriel L.; Morrow, Michael E.; Eubanks, Micky D.; Teel, Pete D.

    2016-01-01

    Invasive species may impact pathogen transmission by altering the distributions and interactions among native vertebrate reservoir hosts and arthropod vectors. Here, we examined the direct and indirect effects of the red imported fire ant (Solenopsis invicta) on the native tick, small mammal and pathogen community in southeast Texas. Using a replicated large-scale field manipulation study, we show that small mammals were more abundant on treatment plots where S. invicta populations were experimentally reduced. Our analysis of ticks on small mammal hosts demonstrated a threefold increase in the ticks caught per unit effort on treatment relative to control plots, and elevated tick loads (a 27-fold increase) on one common rodent species. We detected only one known human pathogen (Rickettsia parkeri), present in 1.4% of larvae and 6.7% of nymph on-host Amblyomma maculatum samples but with no significant difference between treatment and control plots. Given that host and vector population dynamics are key drivers of pathogen transmission, the reduced small mammal and tick abundance associated with S. invicta may alter pathogen transmission dynamics over broader spatial scales. PMID:27651533

  13. Decreased small mammal and on-host tick abundance in association with invasive red imported fire ants (Solenopsis invicta).

    PubMed

    Castellanos, Adrian A; Medeiros, Matthew C I; Hamer, Gabriel L; Morrow, Michael E; Eubanks, Micky D; Teel, Pete D; Hamer, Sarah A; Light, Jessica E

    2016-09-01

    Invasive species may impact pathogen transmission by altering the distributions and interactions among native vertebrate reservoir hosts and arthropod vectors. Here, we examined the direct and indirect effects of the red imported fire ant (Solenopsis invicta) on the native tick, small mammal and pathogen community in southeast Texas. Using a replicated large-scale field manipulation study, we show that small mammals were more abundant on treatment plots where S. invicta populations were experimentally reduced. Our analysis of ticks on small mammal hosts demonstrated a threefold increase in the ticks caught per unit effort on treatment relative to control plots, and elevated tick loads (a 27-fold increase) on one common rodent species. We detected only one known human pathogen (Rickettsia parkeri), present in 1.4% of larvae and 6.7% of nymph on-host Amblyomma maculatum samples but with no significant difference between treatment and control plots. Given that host and vector population dynamics are key drivers of pathogen transmission, the reduced small mammal and tick abundance associated with S. invicta may alter pathogen transmission dynamics over broader spatial scales.

  14. Landscape Level Variation in Tick Abundance Relative to Seasonal Migration in Red Deer

    PubMed Central

    Qviller, Lars; Risnes-Olsen, Nina; Bærum, Kim Magnus; Meisingset, Erling L.; Loe, Leif Egil; Ytrehus, Bjørnar; Viljugrein, Hildegunn; Mysterud, Atle

    2013-01-01

    Partial migration is common among northern ungulates, typically involving an altitudinal movement for seasonally migratory individuals. The main driving force behind migration is the benefit of an extended period of access to newly emerged, high quality forage along the green up gradient with increasing altitude; termed the forage maturation hypothesis. Any other limiting factor spatially correlated with this gradient may provide extra benefits or costs to migration, without necessarily being the cause of it. A common ectoparasite on cervids in Europe is the sheep tick (Ixodes ricinus), but it has not been tested whether migration may lead to the spatial separation from these parasites and thus potentially provide an additional benefit to migration. Further, if there is questing of ticks in winter ranges in May before spring migration, deer migration may also play a role for the distribution of ticks. We quantified the abundance of questing sheep tick within winter and summer home ranges of migratory (n = 42) and resident red deer (Cervus elaphus) individuals (n = 32) in two populations in May and August 2009–2012. Consistent with predictions, there was markedly lower abundance of questing ticks in the summer areas of migrating red deer (0.6/20 m2), both when compared to the annual home range of resident deer (4.9/20 m2) and the winter home ranges of migrants (5.8/20 m2). The reduced abundances within summer home ranges of migrants were explained by lower abundance of ticks with increasing altitude and distance from the coast. The lower abundance of ticks in summer home ranges of migratory deer does not imply that ticks are the main driver of migration (being most likely the benefits expected from forage maturation), but it suggests that ticks may add to the value of migration in some ecosystems and that it may act to spread ticks long distances in the landscape. PMID:23951125

  15. Deorphanization and target validation of cross-tick species conserved novel Amblyomma americanum tick saliva protein

    PubMed Central

    Mulenga, Albert; Kim, Tae Kwon; Ibelli, Adriana Mércia Guaratini

    2013-01-01

    We previously identified a cross-tick species conserved tick feeding stimuli responsive Amblyomma americanum (Aam) AV422 gene. This study demonstrates that AamAV422 belongs to a novel group of arthropod proteins that is characterized by 14 cysteine amino acid residues: C23-X7/9-C33-X23/24-C58-C8-C67X7-X75-X23-C99-X15-C115-X10-C126X24/25/33-C150C151-X7-C159-X8-X168-X23/24-C192-X9/10-C202 predicted to form seven disulfide bonds. We show that AamAV422 protein is a ubiquitously expressed protein that is injected into the host within the first 24 h of the tick attaching onto the host as revealed by western blotting analyses of recombinant (r)AamAV422, tick saliva and dissected tick organ protein extracts using antibodies to 24 h and 48 h tick saliva proteins (TSPs). Native AamAV422 is apparently involved with mediating tick anti-hemostasis and anti-complement functions in that rAamAV422 delayed plasma clotting time in a dose responsive manner by up to ~160 s, prevented platelet aggregation by up to ~16% and caused ~24% reduction in production of terminal complement complexes. Target validation analysis revealed that rAamAV422 is a potential candidate for a cocktail or multivalent tick vaccine preparation in that RNA interference (RNAi)-mediated silencing of AamAV422 mRNA caused a statistically significant (~44%) reduction in tick engorgement weights, which is proxy for amounts of ingested blood. We speculate that AamAV422 is a potential target antigen for development of the highly desired universal tick vaccine in that consistent with high conservation among ticks, antibodies to 24 h Ixodes scapularis TSPs specifically bound rAamAV422. We discuss data in this study in the context of advancing the biology of tick feeding physiology and discovery of potential target antigens for tick vaccine development. PMID:23428900

  16. A list of the 70 species of Australian ticks; diagnostic guides to and species accounts of Ixodes holocyclus (paralysis tick), Ixodes cornuatus (southern paralysis tick) and Rhipicephalus australis (Australian cattle tick); and consideration of the place of Australia in the evolution of ticks with comments on four controversial ideas.

    PubMed

    Barker, Stephen C; Walker, Alan R; Campelo, Dayana

    2014-10-15

    Seventy species of ticks are known from Australia: 14 soft ticks (family Argasidae) and 56 hard ticks (family Ixodidae). Sixteen of the 70 ticks in Australia may feed on humans and domestic animals (Barker and Walker 2014). The other 54 species of ticks in Australia feed only on wild mammals, reptiles and birds. At least 12 of the species of ticks in Australian also occur in Papua New Guinea. We use an image-matching system much like the image-matching systems of field guides to birds and flowers to identify Ixodes holocyclus (paralysis tick), Ixodes cornuatus (southern paralysis tick) and Rhipicephalus (Boophilus) australis (Australian cattle tick). Our species accounts have reviews of the literature on I. holocyclus (paralysis tick) from the first paper on the biology of an Australian tick by Bancroft (1884), on paralysis of dogs by I. holocyclus, to papers published recently, and of I. cornuatus (southern paralysis tick) and Rhipicephalus (Boophilus) australis (Australian cattle tick). We comment on four controversial questions in the evolutionary biology of ticks: (i) were labyrinthodont amphibians in Australia in the Devonian the first hosts of soft, hard and nuttalliellid ticks?; (ii) are the nuttalliellid ticks the sister-group to the hard ticks or the soft ticks?; (iii) is Nuttalliella namaqua the missing link between the soft and hard ticks?; and (iv) the evidence for a lineage of large bodied parasitiform mites (ticks plus the holothyrid mites plus the opiliocarid mites).

  17. Ticks of Australia. The species that infest domestic animals and humans.

    PubMed

    Barker, Stephen C; Walker, Alan R

    2014-01-01

    The book Australian Ticks by F.H.S. Roberts (1970) is a land-mark in Australian tick biology. But it is time for a new and improved book on the ticks of Australia. The present book has identification guides and accounts of the biology and diseases associated with the 16 species of ticks that may feed on domestic animals and humans in Australia. These comprise five argasid (soft) ticks: Argas persicus (poultry tick), Argas robertsi (Robert's bird tick), Ornithodoros capensis (seabird soft tick), O. gurneyi (kangaroo soft tick), Otobius megnini (spinose ear tick); and 11 ixodid (hard) ticks, Amblyomma triguttatum (ornate kangaroo tick), Bothriocroton auruginans (wombat tick), B. hydrosauri (southern reptile tick), Haemaphysalis bancrofti (wallaby tick), H. longicornis (bush tick), Ixodes cornuatus (southern paralysis tick), I. hirsti (Hirst's marsupial tick), I. holocyclus (paralysis tick), I. tasmani (common marsupial tick), Rhipicephalus (Boophilus) australis (Australian cattle tick) and R. sanguineus (brown dog tick).  We use an image-matching system to identify ticks, much like the image-matching systems used in field-guides for birds and flowers. Ticks may be identified by drawings that emphasise unique matrices of uniformly defined morphological characters that, together, allow these 16 ticks to be identified by morphology unequivocally. The species accounts have seven sections: (i) General; (ii)  Differential diagnosis; (iii) Hosts; (iv) Life-cycle and seasonality; (v) Disease; (vi) Habitat and geographic distribution; (vii) Genes and genomes; and (viii) Other information. There are 71 figures and tables, including a glossary character matrices, drawings of life-cycles, drawings of genera, species, and colour photographs of tick biology. PMID:24943801

  18. New Borrelia species detected in ixodid ticks in Oromia, Ethiopia.

    PubMed

    Kumsa, Bersissa; Socolovschi, Cristina; Raoult, Didier; Parola, Philippe

    2015-04-01

    Little is known about Borrelia species transmitted by hard ticks in Ethiopia. The present study was conducted from November 2011 through March 2014 to address the occurrence and molecular identity of these bacteria in ixodid ticks infesting domestic animals in Oromia, Ethiopia. A total of 767 ixodid ticks collected from domestic animals were screened for Borrelia DNA by quantitative (q) real-time PCR followed by standard PCR and sequencing to identify the species. Overall, 3.8% (29/767) of the tested ticks were positive for Borrelia DNA, including 8/119 (6.7%) Amblyomma cohaerens, 1/42 (2.4%) Am. gemma, 3/53 (5.7%) Am. variegatum, 5/22 (22.7%) Amblyomma larvae, 3/60 (5%) Amblyomma nymphs, 2/139 (1.4%) Rhipicephalus (Boophilus) decoloratus, 2/31 (6.4%) Rh. decoloratus nymphs, and 5/118 (4.2%) Rh. pulchellus using 16S genus-specific qPCR. The prevalence of Borrelia DNA was significantly higher in genus Amblyomma (20/298, 6.7%) than in the genus Rhipicephalus (9/417, 2.1%) ticks (P=0.001). Sequencing of PCR products from the flaB and 16S rRNA genes of Borrelia spp. from Amblyomma ticks showed the presence of a new species between the relapsing fever and Lyme disease groups. However, Borrelia sp. detected in Rhipicephalus ticks clustered with B. theileri/B. lonestari. The human pathogenicity of the Borrelia sp. detected in Amblyomma ticks from Ethiopia has not yet been investigated, whereas the Borrelia sp. detected in Rhipicephalus ticks in our study is the causative agent of bovine borreliosis in cattle and may have veterinary importance in different parts of Ethiopia. Furthermore, the detection of previously unrecognized Borrelia species in Amblyomma and Rhipicephalus ticks in Ethiopia generates additional questions concerning the bacterial fauna in hard ticks and will prompt researchers to perform detailed studies for better understanding of ixodid ticks associated bacteria.

  19. New Borrelia species detected in ixodid ticks in Oromia, Ethiopia.

    PubMed

    Kumsa, Bersissa; Socolovschi, Cristina; Raoult, Didier; Parola, Philippe

    2015-04-01

    Little is known about Borrelia species transmitted by hard ticks in Ethiopia. The present study was conducted from November 2011 through March 2014 to address the occurrence and molecular identity of these bacteria in ixodid ticks infesting domestic animals in Oromia, Ethiopia. A total of 767 ixodid ticks collected from domestic animals were screened for Borrelia DNA by quantitative (q) real-time PCR followed by standard PCR and sequencing to identify the species. Overall, 3.8% (29/767) of the tested ticks were positive for Borrelia DNA, including 8/119 (6.7%) Amblyomma cohaerens, 1/42 (2.4%) Am. gemma, 3/53 (5.7%) Am. variegatum, 5/22 (22.7%) Amblyomma larvae, 3/60 (5%) Amblyomma nymphs, 2/139 (1.4%) Rhipicephalus (Boophilus) decoloratus, 2/31 (6.4%) Rh. decoloratus nymphs, and 5/118 (4.2%) Rh. pulchellus using 16S genus-specific qPCR. The prevalence of Borrelia DNA was significantly higher in genus Amblyomma (20/298, 6.7%) than in the genus Rhipicephalus (9/417, 2.1%) ticks (P=0.001). Sequencing of PCR products from the flaB and 16S rRNA genes of Borrelia spp. from Amblyomma ticks showed the presence of a new species between the relapsing fever and Lyme disease groups. However, Borrelia sp. detected in Rhipicephalus ticks clustered with B. theileri/B. lonestari. The human pathogenicity of the Borrelia sp. detected in Amblyomma ticks from Ethiopia has not yet been investigated, whereas the Borrelia sp. detected in Rhipicephalus ticks in our study is the causative agent of bovine borreliosis in cattle and may have veterinary importance in different parts of Ethiopia. Furthermore, the detection of previously unrecognized Borrelia species in Amblyomma and Rhipicephalus ticks in Ethiopia generates additional questions concerning the bacterial fauna in hard ticks and will prompt researchers to perform detailed studies for better understanding of ixodid ticks associated bacteria. PMID:25843811

  20. Assessing the abundance, seasonal questing activity, and Borrelia and tick-borne encephalitis virus (TBEV) prevalence of Ixodes ricinus ticks in a Lyme borreliosis endemic area in Southwest Finland.

    PubMed

    Sormunen, Jani J; Klemola, Tero; Vesterinen, Eero J; Vuorinen, Ilppo; Hytönen, Jukka; Hänninen, Jari; Ruohomäki, Kai; Sääksjärvi, Ilari E; Tonteri, Elina; Penttinen, Ritva

    2016-02-01

    Studies have revealed that Ixodes ricinus (Acari: Ixodidae) have become more abundant and their geographical distribution extended northwards in some Nordic countries during the past few decades. However, ecological data of tick populations in Finland are sparse. In the current study, I. ricinus abundance, seasonal questing activity, and their Borrelia spp. and tick-borne encephalitis virus (TBEV) prevalence were evaluated in a Lyme borreliosis endemic area in Southwest Finland, Seili Island, where a previous study mapping tick densities was conducted 12 years earlier. A total of 1940 ticks were collected from five different biotopes by cloth dragging during May-September 2012. The overall tick density observed was 5.2 ticks/100m(2) for nymphs and adults. Seasonal questing activity of ticks differed between biotopes and life stages: bimodal occurrences were observed especially for nymphal and adult ticks in forested biotopes, while larvae in pastures exhibited mostly unimodal occurrence. Prevalence of Borrelia and TBEV in ticks was evaluated using conventional and real-time PCR. All samples were negative for TBEV. Borrelia prevalence was 25.0% for adults (n=44) and the minimum infection rate (MIR) 5.6% for pooled nymph samples (191 samples, 1-14 individuals per sample; 30/191 positive). No Borrelia were detected in pooled larval samples (63 samples, 1-139 individuals per sample). Five species of Borrelia were identified from the samples: B. afzelii, B. burgdorferi s.s., B. garinii, B. valaisiana and B. miyamotoi. In Finland, B. valaisiana and B. miyamotoi have previously been reported from the Åland Islands but not from the mainland or inner archipelago. The results of the present study suggest an increase in I. ricinus abundance on the island.

  1. Assessing the abundance, seasonal questing activity, and Borrelia and tick-borne encephalitis virus (TBEV) prevalence of Ixodes ricinus ticks in a Lyme borreliosis endemic area in Southwest Finland.

    PubMed

    Sormunen, Jani J; Klemola, Tero; Vesterinen, Eero J; Vuorinen, Ilppo; Hytönen, Jukka; Hänninen, Jari; Ruohomäki, Kai; Sääksjärvi, Ilari E; Tonteri, Elina; Penttinen, Ritva

    2016-02-01

    Studies have revealed that Ixodes ricinus (Acari: Ixodidae) have become more abundant and their geographical distribution extended northwards in some Nordic countries during the past few decades. However, ecological data of tick populations in Finland are sparse. In the current study, I. ricinus abundance, seasonal questing activity, and their Borrelia spp. and tick-borne encephalitis virus (TBEV) prevalence were evaluated in a Lyme borreliosis endemic area in Southwest Finland, Seili Island, where a previous study mapping tick densities was conducted 12 years earlier. A total of 1940 ticks were collected from five different biotopes by cloth dragging during May-September 2012. The overall tick density observed was 5.2 ticks/100m(2) for nymphs and adults. Seasonal questing activity of ticks differed between biotopes and life stages: bimodal occurrences were observed especially for nymphal and adult ticks in forested biotopes, while larvae in pastures exhibited mostly unimodal occurrence. Prevalence of Borrelia and TBEV in ticks was evaluated using conventional and real-time PCR. All samples were negative for TBEV. Borrelia prevalence was 25.0% for adults (n=44) and the minimum infection rate (MIR) 5.6% for pooled nymph samples (191 samples, 1-14 individuals per sample; 30/191 positive). No Borrelia were detected in pooled larval samples (63 samples, 1-139 individuals per sample). Five species of Borrelia were identified from the samples: B. afzelii, B. burgdorferi s.s., B. garinii, B. valaisiana and B. miyamotoi. In Finland, B. valaisiana and B. miyamotoi have previously been reported from the Åland Islands but not from the mainland or inner archipelago. The results of the present study suggest an increase in I. ricinus abundance on the island. PMID:26548608

  2. Borrelia, Rickettsia, and Ehrlichia species in bat ticks, France, 2010.

    PubMed

    Socolovschi, Cristina; Kernif, Tahar; Raoult, Didier; Parola, Philippe

    2012-12-01

    Argas vespertilionis, an argasid tick associated with bats and bat habitats in Europe, Africa, and Asia has been reported to bite humans; however, studies investigating the presence of vector-borne pathogens in these ticks are lacking. Using molecular tools, we tested 5 A. vespertilionis ticks collected in 2010 from the floor of a bat-infested attic in southwestern France that had been converted into bedrooms. Rickettsia sp. AvBat, a new genotype of spotted fever group rickettsiae, was detected and cultivated from 3 of the 5 ticks. A new species of the Ehrlichia canis group, Ehrlichia sp. AvBat, was also detected in 3 ticks. Four ticks were infected with Borrelia sp. CPB1, a relapsing fever agent of the Borrelia group that caused fatal borreliosis in a bat in the United Kingdom. Further studies are needed to characterize these new agents and determine if the A. vespertilionis tick is a vector and/or reservoir of these agents. PMID:23171714

  3. Borrelia, Rickettsia, and Ehrlichia Species in Bat Ticks, France, 2010

    PubMed Central

    Socolovschi, Cristina; Kernif, Tahar; Raoult, Didier

    2012-01-01

    Argas vespertilionis, an argasid tick associated with bats and bat habitats in Europe, Africa, and Asia has been reported to bite humans; however, studies investigating the presence of vector-borne pathogens in these ticks are lacking. Using molecular tools, we tested 5 A. vespertilionis ticks collected in 2010 from the floor of a bat-infested attic in southwestern France that had been converted into bedrooms. Rickettsia sp. AvBat, a new genotype of spotted fever group rickettsiae, was detected and cultivated from 3 of the 5 ticks. A new species of the Ehrlichia canis group, Ehrlichia sp. AvBat, was also detected in 3 ticks. Four ticks were infected with Borrelia sp. CPB1, a relapsing fever agent of the Borrelia group that caused fatal borreliosis in a bat in the United Kingdom. Further studies are needed to characterize these new agents and determine if the A. vespertilionis tick is a vector and/or reservoir of these agents. PMID:23171714

  4. Concordance of bacterial communities of two tick species and blood of their shared rodent host.

    PubMed

    Rynkiewicz, Evelyn C; Hemmerich, Chris; Rusch, Douglas B; Fuqua, Clay; Clay, Keith

    2015-05-01

    High-throughput sequencing is revealing that most macro-organisms house diverse microbial communities. Of particular interest are disease vectors whose microbiome could potentially affect pathogen transmission and vector competence. We investigated bacterial community composition and diversity of the ticks Dermacentor variabilis (n = 68) and Ixodes scapularis (n = 15) and blood of their shared rodent host, Peromyscus leucopus (n = 45) to quantify bacterial diversity and concordance. The 16S rRNA gene was amplified from genomic DNA from field-collected tick and rodent blood samples, and 454 pyrosequencing was used to elucidate their bacterial communities. After quality control, over 300 000 sequences were obtained and classified into 118 operational taxonomic units (OTUs, clustered at 97% similarity). Analysis of rarefied communities revealed that the most abundant OTUs were tick species-specific endosymbionts, Francisella and Rickettsia, and the commonly flea-associated bacterium Bartonella in rodent blood. An Arsenophonus and additional Francisella endosymbiont were also present in D. variabilis samples. Rickettsia was found in both tick species but not in rodent blood, suggesting that it is not transmitted during feeding. Bartonella was present in larvae and nymphs of both tick species, even those scored as unengorged. Relatively, few OTUs (e.g. Bartonella, Lactobacillus) were found in all sample types. Overall, bacterial communities from each sample type were significantly different and highly structured, independent of their dominant OTUs. Our results point to complex microbial assemblages inhabiting ticks and host blood including infectious agents, tick-specific endosymbionts and environmental bacteria that could potentially affect arthropod-vectored disease dynamics. PMID:25847197

  5. Concordance of bacterial communities of two tick species and blood of their shared rodent host.

    PubMed

    Rynkiewicz, Evelyn C; Hemmerich, Chris; Rusch, Douglas B; Fuqua, Clay; Clay, Keith

    2015-05-01

    High-throughput sequencing is revealing that most macro-organisms house diverse microbial communities. Of particular interest are disease vectors whose microbiome could potentially affect pathogen transmission and vector competence. We investigated bacterial community composition and diversity of the ticks Dermacentor variabilis (n = 68) and Ixodes scapularis (n = 15) and blood of their shared rodent host, Peromyscus leucopus (n = 45) to quantify bacterial diversity and concordance. The 16S rRNA gene was amplified from genomic DNA from field-collected tick and rodent blood samples, and 454 pyrosequencing was used to elucidate their bacterial communities. After quality control, over 300 000 sequences were obtained and classified into 118 operational taxonomic units (OTUs, clustered at 97% similarity). Analysis of rarefied communities revealed that the most abundant OTUs were tick species-specific endosymbionts, Francisella and Rickettsia, and the commonly flea-associated bacterium Bartonella in rodent blood. An Arsenophonus and additional Francisella endosymbiont were also present in D. variabilis samples. Rickettsia was found in both tick species but not in rodent blood, suggesting that it is not transmitted during feeding. Bartonella was present in larvae and nymphs of both tick species, even those scored as unengorged. Relatively, few OTUs (e.g. Bartonella, Lactobacillus) were found in all sample types. Overall, bacterial communities from each sample type were significantly different and highly structured, independent of their dominant OTUs. Our results point to complex microbial assemblages inhabiting ticks and host blood including infectious agents, tick-specific endosymbionts and environmental bacteria that could potentially affect arthropod-vectored disease dynamics.

  6. The emergence and cross species transmission of newly discovered tick-borne Bunyavirus in China.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Yong-Zhen; Xu, Jianguo

    2016-02-01

    A novel tick-borne Bunyavirus, discovered in China and later in South Korea and Japan, is now known as Huaiyangshan virus or severe fever with thrombocytopenia syndrome virus and has been identified as the causative agent of a hemorrhagic fever-like disease. Of five species of ticks carrying Huaiyangshan viruses, Haemaphysalis longicornis was the most abundant in regions where the virus was endemic. Its usual hosts (cattle, goats, dogs, rats and chickens) tested positive for Huaiyangshan virus RNA and had a high seroprevalence. The distribution of H. longicornis and the migratory routes of four wild fowl across China, South Korea and Japan are coincident. Thus a tick and migratory bird model for the transmission of the Huaiyangshan virus was proposed. PMID:26949898

  7. Prevalence and Genotypes of Anaplasma Species and Habitat Suitability for Ticks in a Mediterranean Ecosystem▿

    PubMed Central

    Torina, Alessandra; Alongi, Angelina; Naranjo, Victoria; Estrada-Peña, Agustín; Vicente, Joaquín; Scimeca, Salvatore; Marino, Anna M. F.; Salina, Felice; Caracappa, Santo; de la Fuente, José

    2008-01-01

    Anaplasma species are tick-transmitted pathogens that impact veterinary and human health. Sicily is one of the locations where these pathogens are endemic. Sicily represents a typical Mediterranean ecosystem to study Anaplasma infection and tick habitat suitability. The aims of this study were (i) to characterize by 16S rRNA and species-specific msp4 gene PCR the prevalence and genotypes of A. marginale, A. phagocytophilum, and A. ovis in the most abundant host species in Sicilian provinces and (ii) to correlate differences between hosts and between western and eastern Sicily with the habitat suitability for ticks in these regions. Differences were found in the prevalence of Anaplasma spp. between different hosts and between western and eastern provinces. The differences in Anaplasma prevalence between different hosts may be explained by pathogen host tropism. The differences between western and eastern provinces correlated with the tick habitat suitability in these regions. The analysis of Anaplasma genotypes suggested a higher host and regional specificity for A. phagocytophilum than for A. marginale and A. ovis strains, a finding probably associated with the broader host range of A. phagocytophilum. The presence of identical A. marginale genotypes in the two regions may reflect cattle movement. The results for A. ovis suggested the possibility of some genotypes being host specific. These results provide information potentially useful for the management of tick-borne diseases caused by Anaplasma spp. in Sicily and other Mediterranean regions and may contribute to the development of models to predict the risks for these tick-borne pathogens. PMID:18978093

  8. Interaction between ticks (Acari: Ixodidae) and pathogenic nematodes (Nematoda): susceptibility of tick species at various developmental stages.

    PubMed

    Samish, M; Alekseev, E; Glazer, I

    1999-11-01

    The virulence of entomopathogenic nematodes (Steinernematidae and Heterorhabditidae) to tick species under laboratory conditions is reported. The susceptibility of larval, nymphal, and adult stages of the ticks Hyalomma excavatum (Koch), Rhipicephalus bursa (Canestrini & Fanz), and R. sanguineus (Latereille) to 2 strains of Steinernema carpocapsae and 3 strains of Heterorhabditis bacteriophora were compared in laboratory assays. Preimaginal stages of ticks were found to be more resistant to the nematodes than were adult ticks which exhibited 80-100% mortality in a dish containing 5,000 infective juveniles of H. bacteriophora IS-3 or IS-5 strains isolated in Israel. These 2 strains were found to be much more virulent to unfed adult ticks than were the other isolates. No marked difference was found between engorged ticks and unfed adults of R. sanguineus or H. excavatum in terms of mortality, whereas engorged males and unfed females of R. bursa were significantly more susceptible than unfed males or engorged females. PMID:10593074

  9. Lone star tick abundance, fire, and bison grazing in tall-grass prairie

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Cully, J.F.

    1999-01-01

    Lone star ticks (Amblyomma americanum L.) were collected by drag samples of 1 km transects on 12 watersheds at Konza Prairie Research Natural Area near Manhattan, Kans., during summer 1995-1996. Watersheds were treated to 2 experimental treatments: 3 burn intervals (1-year, 4-year, and 20-year) and 2 grazing treatments (grazed by bison (Bos bison L.) or ungrazed). The objectives were to determine whether fire interval, time since most recent burn, and the presence of large ungulate grazers would cause changes in lone star tick abundance in tallgrass prairie in central Kansas. Watersheds burned at 1-year intervals had fewer larvae and adults than watersheds burned at 4-year or 20-year intervals. Watersheds burned during the year of sampling had fewer ticks than watersheds burned one or more years in the past. For watersheds burned 1 or more years in the past there was no effect from time since burn. The presence of bison did not affect tick abundance. Spring burning is an effective method to reduce tick populations in tallgrass prairie during the year of the burn.

  10. Seasonal dynamics of tick species in an urban park of Rome.

    PubMed

    Di Luca, Marco; Toma, Luciano; Bianchi, Riccardo; Quarchioni, Elisa; Marini, Luca; Mancini, Fabiola; Ciervo, Alessandra; Khoury, Cristina

    2013-12-01

    Regular collections were obtained in the Natural Reserve of the Insugherata of Rome during 2011 in order to obtain the tick species composition and the respective seasonal dynamics of the area. A total of 325 ticks was collected in selected sites by means of drag sampling. Among the identified species, Rhipicephalus turanicus was the most abundant (72.3%), followed by Ixodes ricinus (19.7%), Dermacentor marginatus (6.5%), Haemaphysalis punctata (1.2%), and Rhipicephalus bursa (0.3%). R. turanicus occurred mainly in pastures, showing a mono-modal seasonal activity pattern from spring to early summer. Questing I. ricinus were prevalent in woodland from October to May, and the seasonal trend of specimens showed a weak peak in winter. Although adult D. marginatus exhibited seasonal dynamics similar to I. ricinus, with an activity period from October to April, this species occurred in a different environment (pasture) and with considerably lower densities. Haemaphysalis punctata and R. bursa were rare, with an apparent autumn and autumn-winter seasonal activity, respectively. While the species diversity recorded appears as an unequivocal consequence of the natural state of the park, the remarkable R. turanicus density could be a direct effect of the recent introduction of wild boar, as carriers, from the close Veio Park. The presence of the species, a proven vector of various diseases in humans and domestic animals, is discussed in the light of the possible risk of tick-bite exposure of park workers and visitors.

  11. Effects of an invasive forest pathogen on abundance of ticks and their vertebrate hosts in a California Lyme disease focus.

    PubMed

    Swei, Andrea; Ostfeld, Richard S; Lane, Robert S; Briggs, Cheryl J

    2011-05-01

    Invasive species, including pathogens, can have important effects on local ecosystems, including indirect consequences on native species. This study focuses on the effects of an invasive plant pathogen on a vertebrate community and Ixodes pacificus, the vector of the Lyme disease pathogen (Borrelia burgdorferi) in California. Phytophthora ramorum, the causative agent of sudden oak death, is a non-native pathogen killing trees in California and Oregon. We conducted a multi-year study using a gradient of SOD-caused disturbance to assess the impact on the dusky-footed woodrat (Neotoma fuscipes) and the deer mouse (Peromyscus maniculatus), two reservoir hosts of B. burgdorferi, as well as the impact on the Columbian black-tailed deer (Odocoileus hemionus columbianus) and the western fence lizard (Sceloporus occidentalis), both of which are important hosts for I. pacificus but are not pathogen reservoirs. Abundances of P. maniculatus and S. occidentalis were positively correlated with greater SOD disturbance, whereas N. fuscipes abundance was negatively correlated. We did not find a change in space use by O. hemionus. Our data show that SOD has a positive impact on the density of nymphal ticks, which is expected to increase the risk of human exposure to Lyme disease all else being equal. A positive correlation between SOD disturbance and the density of nymphal ticks was expected given increased abundances of two important hosts: deer mice and western fence lizards. However, further research is needed to integrate the direct effects of SOD on ticks, for example via altered abiotic conditions with host-mediated indirect effects. PMID:20941513

  12. Effects of an invasive forest pathogen on abundance of ticks and their vertebrate hosts in a California Lyme disease focus.

    PubMed

    Swei, Andrea; Ostfeld, Richard S; Lane, Robert S; Briggs, Cheryl J

    2011-05-01

    Invasive species, including pathogens, can have important effects on local ecosystems, including indirect consequences on native species. This study focuses on the effects of an invasive plant pathogen on a vertebrate community and Ixodes pacificus, the vector of the Lyme disease pathogen (Borrelia burgdorferi) in California. Phytophthora ramorum, the causative agent of sudden oak death, is a non-native pathogen killing trees in California and Oregon. We conducted a multi-year study using a gradient of SOD-caused disturbance to assess the impact on the dusky-footed woodrat (Neotoma fuscipes) and the deer mouse (Peromyscus maniculatus), two reservoir hosts of B. burgdorferi, as well as the impact on the Columbian black-tailed deer (Odocoileus hemionus columbianus) and the western fence lizard (Sceloporus occidentalis), both of which are important hosts for I. pacificus but are not pathogen reservoirs. Abundances of P. maniculatus and S. occidentalis were positively correlated with greater SOD disturbance, whereas N. fuscipes abundance was negatively correlated. We did not find a change in space use by O. hemionus. Our data show that SOD has a positive impact on the density of nymphal ticks, which is expected to increase the risk of human exposure to Lyme disease all else being equal. A positive correlation between SOD disturbance and the density of nymphal ticks was expected given increased abundances of two important hosts: deer mice and western fence lizards. However, further research is needed to integrate the direct effects of SOD on ticks, for example via altered abiotic conditions with host-mediated indirect effects.

  13. Seasonal variation in the abundance and distribution of ticks that parasitize Microcebus griseorufus at the Bezà Mahafaly Special Reserve, Madagascar

    PubMed Central

    Rodriguez, Idalia A.; Rasoazanabary, Emilienne; Godfrey, Laurie R.

    2015-01-01

    At Bezà Mahafaly Special Reserve (BMSR), Madagascar, mouse lemurs (Microcebus griseorufus) are parasitized by multiple species of haemaphysaline ticks. At present we know little about the role ticks play in wild lemur populations and how they can alter interspecies relationships within communities or impact host fitness. In order to better understand these dynamics at BMSR, we examined parasite-host interactions as well as the ecology of mouse lemurs and their infesting ticks, Haemaphysalis lemuris and H. sp. cf. simplex. We show that season, host sex, and habitat influence the relative abundance of ticks on mouse lemurs. Specifically, infestations occur only during the dry season (May–October), are higher in males, and are higher at the study site with the most ground cover and with greater density of large-bodied hosts. Microcebus likely experience decreased susceptibility to tick infestations during the wet season because at that time they rarely if ever descend to the ground. Similarly, male mouse lemurs have higher infestation rates than females because of the greater time they spend traveling and foraging on the ground. During the dry season, Microcebus likely serve as hosts for the tenrec tick, H. sp. cf. simplex, when tenrecs hibernate. In turn, during the wet season when mouse lemurs rarely descend to the ground, other small mammals at the reserve may serve as maintenance hosts for populations of immature ticks. The synchronous development of larvae and nymphs could present high risk for vector-borne disease in Microcebus. This study also provides a preliminary description of the ecology and life cycle of the most common lemur tick, H. lemuris. PMID:26767168

  14. Seasonal variation in the abundance and distribution of ticks that parasitize Microcebus griseorufus at the Bezà Mahafaly Special Reserve, Madagascar.

    PubMed

    Rodriguez, Idalia A; Rasoazanabary, Emilienne; Godfrey, Laurie R

    2015-12-01

    At Bezà Mahafaly Special Reserve (BMSR), Madagascar, mouse lemurs (Microcebus griseorufus) are parasitized by multiple species of haemaphysaline ticks. At present we know little about the role ticks play in wild lemur populations and how they can alter interspecies relationships within communities or impact host fitness. In order to better understand these dynamics at BMSR, we examined parasite-host interactions as well as the ecology of mouse lemurs and their infesting ticks, Haemaphysalis lemuris and H. sp. cf. simplex. We show that season, host sex, and habitat influence the relative abundance of ticks on mouse lemurs. Specifically, infestations occur only during the dry season (May-October), are higher in males, and are higher at the study site with the most ground cover and with greater density of large-bodied hosts. Microcebus likely experience decreased susceptibility to tick infestations during the wet season because at that time they rarely if ever descend to the ground. Similarly, male mouse lemurs have higher infestation rates than females because of the greater time they spend traveling and foraging on the ground. During the dry season, Microcebus likely serve as hosts for the tenrec tick, H. sp. cf. simplex, when tenrecs hibernate. In turn, during the wet season when mouse lemurs rarely descend to the ground, other small mammals at the reserve may serve as maintenance hosts for populations of immature ticks. The synchronous development of larvae and nymphs could present high risk for vector-borne disease in Microcebus. This study also provides a preliminary description of the ecology and life cycle of the most common lemur tick, H. lemuris.

  15. Seasonal variation in the abundance and distribution of ticks that parasitize Microcebus griseorufus at the Bezà Mahafaly Special Reserve, Madagascar.

    PubMed

    Rodriguez, Idalia A; Rasoazanabary, Emilienne; Godfrey, Laurie R

    2015-12-01

    At Bezà Mahafaly Special Reserve (BMSR), Madagascar, mouse lemurs (Microcebus griseorufus) are parasitized by multiple species of haemaphysaline ticks. At present we know little about the role ticks play in wild lemur populations and how they can alter interspecies relationships within communities or impact host fitness. In order to better understand these dynamics at BMSR, we examined parasite-host interactions as well as the ecology of mouse lemurs and their infesting ticks, Haemaphysalis lemuris and H. sp. cf. simplex. We show that season, host sex, and habitat influence the relative abundance of ticks on mouse lemurs. Specifically, infestations occur only during the dry season (May-October), are higher in males, and are higher at the study site with the most ground cover and with greater density of large-bodied hosts. Microcebus likely experience decreased susceptibility to tick infestations during the wet season because at that time they rarely if ever descend to the ground. Similarly, male mouse lemurs have higher infestation rates than females because of the greater time they spend traveling and foraging on the ground. During the dry season, Microcebus likely serve as hosts for the tenrec tick, H. sp. cf. simplex, when tenrecs hibernate. In turn, during the wet season when mouse lemurs rarely descend to the ground, other small mammals at the reserve may serve as maintenance hosts for populations of immature ticks. The synchronous development of larvae and nymphs could present high risk for vector-borne disease in Microcebus. This study also provides a preliminary description of the ecology and life cycle of the most common lemur tick, H. lemuris. PMID:26767168

  16. Variation in the Microbiota of Ixodes Ticks with Regard to Geography, Species, and Sex.

    PubMed

    Van Treuren, Will; Ponnusamy, Loganathan; Brinkerhoff, R Jory; Gonzalez, Antonio; Parobek, Christian M; Juliano, Jonathan J; Andreadis, Theodore G; Falco, Richard C; Ziegler, Lorenza Beati; Hathaway, Nicholas; Keeler, Corinna; Emch, Michael; Bailey, Jeffrey A; Roe, R Michael; Apperson, Charles S; Knight, Rob; Meshnick, Steven R

    2015-09-01

    Ixodes scapularis is the principal vector of Lyme disease on the East Coast and in the upper Midwest regions of the United States, yet the tick is also present in the Southeast, where Lyme disease is absent or rare. A closely related species, I. affinis, also carries the pathogen in the South but does not seem to transmit it to humans. In order to better understand the geographic diversity of the tick, we analyzed the microbiota of 104 adult I. scapularis and 13 adult I. affinis ticks captured in 19 locations in South Carolina, North Carolina, Virginia, Connecticut, and New York. Initially, ticks from 4 sites were analyzed by 454 pyrosequencing. Subsequently, ticks from these sites plus 15 others were analyzed by sequencing with an Illumina MiSeq machine. By both analyses, the microbiomes of female ticks were significantly less diverse than those of male ticks. The dissimilarity between tick microbiomes increased with distance between sites, and the state in which a tick was collected could be inferred from its microbiota. The genus Rickettsia was prominent in all locations. Borrelia was also present in most locations and was present at especially high levels in one site in western Virginia. In contrast, members of the family Enterobacteriaceae were very common in North Carolina I. scapularis ticks but uncommon in I. scapularis ticks from other sites and in North Carolina I. affinis ticks. These data suggest substantial variations in the Ixodes microbiota in association with geography, species, and sex.

  17. Variation in the Microbiota of Ixodes Ticks with Regard to Geography, Species, and Sex

    PubMed Central

    Van Treuren, Will; Ponnusamy, Loganathan; Brinkerhoff, R. Jory; Gonzalez, Antonio; Parobek, Christian M.; Juliano, Jonathan J.; Andreadis, Theodore G.; Falco, Richard C.; Ziegler, Lorenza Beati; Hathaway, Nicholas; Keeler, Corinna; Emch, Michael; Bailey, Jeffrey A.; Roe, R. Michael; Apperson, Charles S.; Knight, Rob

    2015-01-01

    Ixodes scapularis is the principal vector of Lyme disease on the East Coast and in the upper Midwest regions of the United States, yet the tick is also present in the Southeast, where Lyme disease is absent or rare. A closely related species, I. affinis, also carries the pathogen in the South but does not seem to transmit it to humans. In order to better understand the geographic diversity of the tick, we analyzed the microbiota of 104 adult I. scapularis and 13 adult I. affinis ticks captured in 19 locations in South Carolina, North Carolina, Virginia, Connecticut, and New York. Initially, ticks from 4 sites were analyzed by 454 pyrosequencing. Subsequently, ticks from these sites plus 15 others were analyzed by sequencing with an Illumina MiSeq machine. By both analyses, the microbiomes of female ticks were significantly less diverse than those of male ticks. The dissimilarity between tick microbiomes increased with distance between sites, and the state in which a tick was collected could be inferred from its microbiota. The genus Rickettsia was prominent in all locations. Borrelia was also present in most locations and was present at especially high levels in one site in western Virginia. In contrast, members of the family Enterobacteriaceae were very common in North Carolina I. scapularis ticks but uncommon in I. scapularis ticks from other sites and in North Carolina I. affinis ticks. These data suggest substantial variations in the Ixodes microbiota in association with geography, species, and sex. PMID:26150449

  18. Seasonal analysis of Rickettsia species in ticks in an agricultural site of Slovakia.

    PubMed

    Špitalská, Eva; Stanko, Michal; Mošanský, Ladislav; Kraljik, Jasna; Miklisová, Dana; Mahríková, Lenka; Bona, Martin; Kazimírová, Mária

    2016-03-01

    Many rickettsiae of the spotted fever group are emerging pathogens causing serious diseases associated with vertebrate hosts. Ixodidae ticks are known as their vectors. Investigation of the relative abundance of questing Ixodes ricinus and their infection with Rickettsia spp. in an agricultural site comprising a game reserve in Slovakia was the aim of this study. In total, 2198 I. ricinus (492 larvae, 1503 nymphs and 203 adults) were collected by flagging the vegetation along 100 m(2) transects in Rozhanovce (eastern Slovakia): 334, 595 and 1269 in 2011, 2012 and 2013, respectively. Considering questing nymphs and adults, the highest relative density of 81 individuals/100 m(2) was observed in May 2013, the lowest of 0.3 individuals/100 m(2) in March 2012. A total of 1056 ticks (853 nymphs, 100 females and 103 males; 2011: n = 329, 2012: n = 509 and 2013: n = 218) were individually screened by PCR-based methods for the presence of Rickettsia spp. The overall prevalences were 7.3% for nymphs, 15% for females, 7.8% for males; 7.0% in 2011, 8.4% in 2012, and 8.7% in 2013. The maximum prevalences were observed in July in nymphs and in May in adults. Sequencing showed infection with R. helvetica in 73 ticks (72.6% nymphs, 16.4% females, 11% males) and with R. monacensis in 11 ticks (8 nymphs, 3 females). The results showed the circulation of pathogenic Rickettsia species in the agricultural site and a potential risk for humans to encounter infected ticks.

  19. Abundance of ticks (Acari: Ixodidae) infesting the western fence lizard, Sceloporus occidentalis, in relation to environmental factors.

    PubMed

    Tälleklint-Eisen, L; Eisen, R J

    1999-09-01

    We examined the impact of environmental characteristics, such as habitat type, topographic exposure and presence of leaf litter, on the abundance of Ixodes pacificus ticks infesting the western fence lizard (Sceloporus occidentalis) at the University of California Hopland Research and Extension Center (HREC), Mendocino County, California. A total of 383 adult lizards were slip-noosed and examined for tick infestation in April and May 1998. At least 94% of the lizards were infested by ticks and at least 20% of the females and 33% of the males carried > 15 ticks. This intensive utilization of western fence lizards (which do not serve as natural reservoirs for Lyme disease spirochetes) by subadult ticks, is probably the primary reason for the low prevalence of infection with Borrelia burgdorferi in I. pacificus nymphs and adults previously recorded at the HREC. Tick loads were higher on male than female lizards. Also, male lizards were generally more heavily infested in late April than in late May. The prevalence of tick infestation exceeded 88% in all habitat types but males collected in woodland and grass/woodland edges had higher tick loads than those collected in open grassland. Male lizards captured in open, exposed grassland tended to carry heavier tick loads in northern/eastern, as compared to southern/western, exposures, and when leaf litter was present. PMID:10581712

  20. Massive Infection of Seabird Ticks with Bacterial Species Related to Coxiella burnetii

    PubMed Central

    Dietrich, Muriel; Lebarbenchon, Camille; Jaeger, Audrey; Le Rouzic, Céline; Bastien, Matthieu; Lagadec, Erwan; McCoy, Karen D.; Pascalis, Hervé; Le Corre, Matthieu; Dellagi, Koussay; Tortosa, Pablo

    2014-01-01

    Seabird ticks are known reservoirs of bacterial pathogens of medical importance; however, ticks parasitizing tropical seabirds have received less attention than their counterparts from temperate and subpolar regions. Recently, Rickettsia africae was described to infect seabird ticks of the western Indian Ocean and New Caledonia, constituting the only available data on bacterial pathogens associated with tropical seabird tick species. Here, we combined a pyrosequencing-based approach with a classical molecular analysis targeting bacteria of potential medical importance in order to describe the bacterial community in two tropical seabird ticks, Amblyomma loculosum and Carios (Ornithodoros) capensis. We also investigated the patterns of prevalence and host specificity within the biogeographical context of the western Indian Ocean islands. The bacterial community of the two tick species was characterized by a strong dominance of Coxiella and Rickettsia. Our data support a strict Coxiella-host tick specificity, a pattern resembling the one found for Rickettsia spp. in the same two seabird tick species. Both the high prevalence and stringent host tick specificity suggest that these bacteria may be tick symbionts with probable vertical transmission. Detailed studies of the pathogenicity of these bacteria will now be required to determine whether horizontal transmission can occur and to clarify their status as potential human pathogens. More generally, our results show that the combination of next generation sequencing with targeted detection/genotyping approaches proves to be efficient in poorly investigated fields where research can be considered to be starting from scratch. PMID:24657860

  1. Massive infection of seabird ticks with bacterial species related to Coxiella burnetii.

    PubMed

    Wilkinson, David A; Dietrich, Muriel; Lebarbenchon, Camille; Jaeger, Audrey; Le Rouzic, Céline; Bastien, Matthieu; Lagadec, Erwan; McCoy, Karen D; Pascalis, Hervé; Le Corre, Matthieu; Dellagi, Koussay; Tortosa, Pablo

    2014-06-01

    Seabird ticks are known reservoirs of bacterial pathogens of medical importance; however, ticks parasitizing tropical seabirds have received less attention than their counterparts from temperate and subpolar regions. Recently, Rickettsia africae was described to infect seabird ticks of the western Indian Ocean and New Caledonia, constituting the only available data on bacterial pathogens associated with tropical seabird tick species. Here, we combined a pyrosequencing-based approach with a classical molecular analysis targeting bacteria of potential medical importance in order to describe the bacterial community in two tropical seabird ticks, Amblyomma loculosum and Carios (Ornithodoros) capensis. We also investigated the patterns of prevalence and host specificity within the biogeographical context of the western Indian Ocean islands. The bacterial community of the two tick species was characterized by a strong dominance of Coxiella and Rickettsia. Our data support a strict Coxiella-host tick specificity, a pattern resembling the one found for Rickettsia spp. in the same two seabird tick species. Both the high prevalence and stringent host tick specificity suggest that these bacteria may be tick symbionts with probable vertical transmission. Detailed studies of the pathogenicity of these bacteria will now be required to determine whether horizontal transmission can occur and to clarify their status as potential human pathogens. More generally, our results show that the combination of next generation sequencing with targeted detection/genotyping approaches proves to be efficient in poorly investigated fields where research can be considered to be starting from scratch.

  2. Changes in the geographical distribution and abundance of the tick Ixodes ricinus during the past 30 years in Sweden

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    Background Ixodes ricinus is the main vector in Europe of human-pathogenic Lyme borreliosis (LB) spirochaetes, the tick-borne encephalitis virus (TBEV) and other pathogens of humans and domesticated mammals. The results of a previous 1994 questionnaire, directed at people living in Central and North Sweden (Svealand and Norrland) and aiming to gather information about tick exposure for humans and domestic animals, suggested that Ixodes ricinus ticks had become more widespread in Central Sweden and the southern part of North Sweden from the early 1980s to the early 1990s. To investigate whether the expansion of the tick's northern geographical range and the increasing abundance of ticks in Sweden were still occurring, in 2009 we performed a follow-up survey 16 years after the initial study. Methods A questionnaire similar to the one used in the 1994 study was published in Swedish magazines aimed at dog owners, home owners, and hunters. The questionnaire was published together with a popular science article about the tick's biology and role as a pathogen vector in Sweden. The magazines were selected to get information from people familiar with ticks and who spend time in areas where ticks might be present. Results Analyses of data from both surveys revealed that during the near 30-year period from the early 1980s to 2008, I. ricinus has expanded its distribution range northwards. In the early 1990s ticks were found in new areas along the northern coastline of the Baltic Sea, while in the 2009 study, ticks were reported for the first time from many locations in North Sweden. This included locations as far north as 66°N and places in the interior part of North Sweden. During this 16-year period the tick's range in Sweden was estimated to have increased by 9.9%. Most of the range expansion occurred in North Sweden (north of 60°N) where the tick's coverage area doubled from 12.5% in the early 1990s to 26.8% in 2008. Moreover, according to the respondents, the abundance

  3. Species interactions in occurrence data for a community of tick-transmitted pathogens

    PubMed Central

    Estrada-Peña, Agustín; de la Fuente, José

    2016-01-01

    Interactions between tick species, their realized range of hosts, the pathogens they carry and transmit, and the geographic distribution of species in the Western Palearctic were determined based on evidence published between 1970–2014. These relationships were linked to remotely sensed features of temperature and vegetation and used to extract the network of interactions among the organisms. The resulting datasets focused on niche overlap among ticks and hosts, species interactions, and the fraction of the environmental niche in which tick-borne pathogens may circulate as a result of interactions and overlapping environmental traits. The resulting datasets provide a valuable resource for researchers interested in tick-borne pathogens, as they conciliate the abiotic and biotic sides of their niche, allowing exploration of the importance of each host species acting as a vertebrate reservoir in the circulation of tick-transmitted pathogens in the environmental niche. PMID:27479213

  4. Ectoparasites of Microtus californicus and Possible Emergence of an Exotic Ixodes Species Tick in California.

    PubMed

    Poulsen, Amanda; Conroy, Chris; Foley, Patrick; Ott-Conn, Caitlin; Roy, Austin; Brown, Richard; Foley, Janet

    2015-09-01

    California voles (Microtus californicus Peale) harbor fleas and ticks, may be infected with vector-borne pathogens, and could themselves suffer from disease and serve as a source of infection for people and other animals. Here we summarize publications, museum archives, and recent records of ticks and fleas from California voles. There have been 18 flea species reported on California voles with geographic locations reported for 13. During recent statewide surveys, we found six flea species, with the highest species richness in Humboldt County. We found three of five previously reported tick species as well as a tick resembling the eastern North American tick Ixodes minor Neumann (which we here designate Ixodes "Mojave morphotype") on isolated Amargosa voles and Owens Valley voles (Microtus californicus vallicola Bailey) in Inyo County in 2012 and 2014. Additional incidental observations of this Mojave morphotype tick were on a western harvest mouse (Reithrodontomys megalotis Baird) at the Mojave site and a montane vole (Microtus montanus Peale) in the Owens Valley, both in March, 2014. We cannot rule out that this tick species has been present in remote areas of California but gone unrecognized, but these data are consistent with recent introduction of this tick, possibly from migrating birds. Changes in the ectoparasite fauna suggest changing ecologies of vectors and vector-borne pathogens that could influence animals and people as well. PMID:26336217

  5. Clonal growth and plant species abundance

    PubMed Central

    Herben, Tomáš; Nováková, Zuzana; Klimešová, Jitka

    2014-01-01

    Background and Aims Both regional and local plant abundances are driven by species' dispersal capacities and their abilities to exploit new habitats and persist there. These processes are affected by clonal growth, which is difficult to evaluate and compare across large numbers of species. This study assessed the influence of clonal reproduction on local and regional abundances of a large set of species and compared the predictive power of morphologically defined traits of clonal growth with data on actual clonal growth from a botanical garden. The role of clonal growth was compared with the effects of seed reproduction, habitat requirements and growth, proxied both by LHS (leaf–height–seed) traits and by actual performance in the botanical garden. Methods Morphological parameters of clonal growth, actual clonal reproduction in the garden and LHS traits (leaf-specific area – height – seed mass) were used as predictors of species abundance, both regional (number of species records in the Czech Republic) and local (mean species cover in vegetation records) for 836 perennial herbaceous species. Species differences in habitat requirements were accounted for by classifying the dataset by habitat type and also by using Ellenberg indicator values as covariates. Key Results After habitat differences were accounted for, clonal growth parameters explained an important part of variation in species abundance, both at regional and at local levels. At both levels, both greater vegetative growth in cultivation and greater lateral expansion trait values were correlated with higher abundance. Seed reproduction had weaker effects, being positive at the regional level and negative at the local level. Conclusions Morphologically defined traits are predictive of species abundance, and it is concluded that simultaneous investigation of several such traits can help develop hypotheses on specific processes (e.g. avoidance of self-competition, support of offspring) potentially

  6. Which forest bird species are the main hosts of the tick, Ixodes ricinus, the vector of Borrelia burgdorferi sensu lato, during the breeding season?

    PubMed

    Marsot, M; Henry, P-Y; Vourc'h, G; Gasqui, P; Ferquel, E; Laignel, J; Grysan, M; Chapuis, J-L

    2012-07-01

    Wild birds are important hosts for vector-borne pathogens, especially those borne by ticks. However, few studies have been conducted on the role of different bird species within a community as hosts of vector-borne pathogens. This study addressed individual and species factors that could explain the burden of Ixodes ricinus on forest birds during the reproductive periods of both vectors and hosts. The goal was to identify which bird species contribute the most to the tick population at the community level. Birds were mist-netted on four plots in 2008 and on seven plots in 2009 in two forests (Sénart and Notre Dame, near Paris, France). The dependence of the tick load per bird upon environmental conditions (questing nymph density, year and plot) and on host species traits (species, age, sex, body size, vertical space use, level of innate and acquired immunity) was analysed. Finally, the relative contribution of each bird species to the local dynamics of ticks was estimated, while accounting for their respective abundance. Tick burden differed markedly between bird species and varied according to questing nymph density. Bird species with a high body mass, those that forage low in the vegetation, and those that had a high innate immune response and a high spleen mass were more likely to have a high tick burden. Four species (the Common Blackbird, Turdus merula, the European Robin, Erithacus rubecula, the Song Thrush, Turdus philomelos, and the Winter Wren, Troglodytes troglodytes) hosted more than 90% of the ticks in the local bird community. These species, and particularly T. merula which was host to a high proportion of the nymphs, are likely to contribute significantly to the circulation of pathogens for which they are competent, such as the agent of Lyme borreliosis.

  7. Comparison of tick-borne microorganism communities in Ixodes spp. of the Ixodes ricinus species complex at distinct geographical regions.

    PubMed

    Movila, Alexandru; Dubinina, Helen V; Sitnicova, Natalia; Bespyatova, Liubov; Uspenskaia, Inga; Efremova, Galina; Toderas, Ion; Alekseev, Andrey N

    2014-05-01

    Characterizing the tick-borne microorganism communities of Ixodes ricinus (sheep tick) and Ixodes persulcatus (taiga tick) from the I. ricinus species complex in distinct geographical regions of Eastern Europe and European Russia, we demonstrated differences between the two ticks. Taiga ticks were more frequently mono- and co-infected than sheep ticks: 24.4 % (45/184 tested ticks) versus 17.5 % (52/297) and 4.3 % (8/184) versus 3.4 % (10/297), respectively. Ginsberg co-infection index values were significant at the various sites. Diversity of the tick-borne microorganism communities was estimated by the Shannon index, reaching values of 1.71 ± 0.46 and 1.20 ± 0.15 at the sheep-tick and the taiga-tick harbored sites, respectively. Richness of the tick-borne microorganism community in the sheep tick collection sites was about twice the value of the taiga tick collection sites. Future investigations are warranted to further characterize the peculiarities of the tick-borne microorganism communities among the ticks of the Ixodes ricinus complex.

  8. Molecular detection of Rickettsia, Coxiella and Rickettsiella DNA in three native Australian tick species.

    PubMed

    Vilcins, Inger-Marie E; Old, Julie M; Deane, Elizabeth

    2009-11-01

    Three Australian native animal species yielded 60 samples composed of three indigenous ticks. Hosts included twelve koalas, two echidnas and one wombat from Victoria, and ticks were of the species Ixodes tasmani (n = 42), Bothriocroton concolor (n = 8) and B. auruginans (n = 10), respectively. PCR screening and sequencing detected a species of Coxiella, sharing closest sequence identity to C. burnetii (>98%), in all B. auruginans, as well as a species of Rickettsia, matching closest to R. massiliae, in 70% of the same samples. A genotype sharing closest similarity to Rickettsia bellii (>99%) was identified in three female B. concolor collected from one of the echidnas. Three samples of I. tasmani, taken from three koalas, yielded different genotypes of Rickettsiella. These results represent the first detection of the three genera in each tick species and identify a high level of previously undetected bacterial diversity in Australian ticks. PMID:19296229

  9. Tick Bites

    MedlinePlus

    ... Ticks are small bloodsucking parasites. Many species transmit diseases to animals and people. Some of the diseases you can get from a tick bite are Lyme disease, ehrlichiosis, Rocky Mountain spotted fever and tularemia. Some ...

  10. Species Abundance Patterns in Complex Evolutionary Dynamics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tokita, Kei

    2004-10-01

    An analytic theory of species abundance patterns (SAPs) in biological networks is presented. The theory is based on multispecies replicator dynamics equivalent to the Lotka-Volterra equation, with diverse interspecies interactions. Various SAPs observed in nature are derived from a single parameter. The abundance distribution is formed like a widely observed left-skewed lognormal distribution. As the model has a general form, the result can be applied to similar patterns in other complex biological networks, e.g., gene expression.

  11. Borrelia Species in Host-Seeking Ticks and Small Mammals in Northern Florida

    PubMed Central

    Clark, Kerry

    2004-01-01

    The aim of this study was to improve understanding of several factors related to the ecology and environmental risk of Borrelia infection in northern Florida. Small mammals and host-seeking adult ticks were collected at several sites, and specimens were tested for the presence of Borrelia species, primarily by PCR amplification. Tissues from some vertebrates and ticks were initially cultured in BSK-H medium to isolate spirochetes, but none were recovered. However, comparison of partial flagellin (flaB), 66-kDa protein (p66), and outer surface protein A (ospA) gene sequences from DNAs amplified from small mammals and ticks confirmed the presence of several Borrelia species. Borrelia lonestari DNA was detected among lone star ticks (Amblyomma americanum) at four sites. Borrelia burgdorferi sensu stricto strains were detected in all small mammal species tested and in A. americanum, Ixodes affinis, and Ixodes scapularis ticks. Borrelia bissettii was found in a cotton mouse and cotton rats and in I. affinis ticks. The study findings extend the known geographic distributions of B. lonestari in A. americanum and of B. burgdorferi sensu lato in A. americanum, I. affinis, I. scapularis, and small mammals to new sites in Florida. The presence of B. burgdorferi sensu stricto strains in host-seeking lone star ticks at two sites in Florida suggests that A. americanum should still be considered a possible vector of B. burgdorferi sensu lato. PMID:15528699

  12. Insights into the development of Ixodes scapularis: a resource for research on a medically important tick species.

    PubMed

    Kocan, Katherine M; de la Fuente, José; Coburn, Lisa A

    2015-01-01

    Ticks (Acari: Ixodida) are arthropod ectoparasites dependent on a bloodmeal from a vertebrate host at each developmental stage for completion of their life cycle. This tick feeding cycle impacts animal health by causing damage to hides, secondary infections, immune reactions and diseases caused by transmission of pathogens. The genus Ixodes includes several medically important species that vector diseases, including granulocytic anaplasmosis and Lyme disease. I. scapularis, commonly called the black-legged or deer tick, is a medically-important tick species in North America and therefore was the first tick genome to be sequenced, thus serving as an important resource for tick research. This Primer focuses on the normal developmental cycle and laboratory rearing of I. scapularis. Definition of normal morphology, along with a consistent source of laboratory-reared I. scapularis, are fundamental for all aspects of future research, especially the effects of genetic manipulation and the evaluation of tick vaccine efficacy. Recent research important for the advancement of tick research, namely the development of tick cell culture systems for study of ticks and tick-borne pathogens, RNA interference for genetic manipulation of ticks and discovery of candidate antigens for development of tick vaccines, are briefly presented along with areas to target for future research. PMID:26576940

  13. Insights into the development of Ixodes scapularis: a resource for research on a medically important tick species.

    PubMed

    Kocan, Katherine M; de la Fuente, José; Coburn, Lisa A

    2015-11-14

    Ticks (Acari: Ixodida) are arthropod ectoparasites dependent on a bloodmeal from a vertebrate host at each developmental stage for completion of their life cycle. This tick feeding cycle impacts animal health by causing damage to hides, secondary infections, immune reactions and diseases caused by transmission of pathogens. The genus Ixodes includes several medically important species that vector diseases, including granulocytic anaplasmosis and Lyme disease. I. scapularis, commonly called the black-legged or deer tick, is a medically-important tick species in North America and therefore was the first tick genome to be sequenced, thus serving as an important resource for tick research. This Primer focuses on the normal developmental cycle and laboratory rearing of I. scapularis. Definition of normal morphology, along with a consistent source of laboratory-reared I. scapularis, are fundamental for all aspects of future research, especially the effects of genetic manipulation and the evaluation of tick vaccine efficacy. Recent research important for the advancement of tick research, namely the development of tick cell culture systems for study of ticks and tick-borne pathogens, RNA interference for genetic manipulation of ticks and discovery of candidate antigens for development of tick vaccines, are briefly presented along with areas to target for future research.

  14. Squalene: a naturally abundant mammalian skin secretion and long distance tick-attractant (Acari: Ixodidae).

    PubMed

    Yoder, J A; Stevens, B W; Crouch, K C

    1999-07-01

    Squalene is a naturally occurring lipid on mammalian skin and is an attractant to the lone star tick, Amblyomma americanum (L.). In this study, we compared squalene to the standard tick-attractants, benzaldehyde, isobutyric acid, methyl salicylate, nonanoic acid, and o-nitrophenol identified as active ingredients of tick aggregation-attachment pheromones and determined its effectiveness in field and laboratory settings at varying distances. Squalene was detected from 1/4 m greater than the standard tick attractants, attracted a greater percentage of ticks (75 compared with 0-43%) and featured a rapid response time (< 30 min). Thus, squalene contributes more to the tick's ability to locate hosts at greater distances than aggregation-attachment pheromones. These results have important implications for improving tick monitoring and control programs by adding squalene as a supplement to existing attractant baits. PMID:10467784

  15. The relationship between deer density, tick abundance, and human cases of Lyme disease in a residential community.

    PubMed

    Kilpatrick, Howard J; LaBonte, Andrew M; Stafford, Kirby C

    2014-07-01

    White-tailed deer (Odocoileus virginianus Zimmerman), serve as the primary host for the adult blacklegged tick (Ixodes scapularis Say), the vector for Lyme disease, human babesiosis, and human granulocytic anaplasmosis. Our objective was to evaluate the degree of association between deer density, tick abundance, and human cases of Lyme disease in one Connecticut community over a 13-yr period. We surveyed 90-98% of all permanent residents in the community six times from 1995 to 2008 to document resident's exposure to tick-related disease and frequency and abundance of deer observations. After hunts were initiated, number and frequency of deer observations in the community were greatly reduced as were resident-reported cases of Lyme disease. Number of resident-reported cases of Lyme disease per 100 households was strongly correlated to deer density in the community. Reducing deer density to 5.1 deer per square kilometer resulted in a 76% reduction in tick abundance, 70% reduction in the entomological risk index, and 80% reduction in resident-reported cases of Lyme disease in the community from before to after a hunt was initiated. PMID:25118409

  16. The relationship between deer density, tick abundance, and human cases of Lyme disease in a residential community.

    PubMed

    Kilpatrick, Howard J; LaBonte, Andrew M; Stafford, Kirby C

    2014-07-01

    White-tailed deer (Odocoileus virginianus Zimmerman), serve as the primary host for the adult blacklegged tick (Ixodes scapularis Say), the vector for Lyme disease, human babesiosis, and human granulocytic anaplasmosis. Our objective was to evaluate the degree of association between deer density, tick abundance, and human cases of Lyme disease in one Connecticut community over a 13-yr period. We surveyed 90-98% of all permanent residents in the community six times from 1995 to 2008 to document resident's exposure to tick-related disease and frequency and abundance of deer observations. After hunts were initiated, number and frequency of deer observations in the community were greatly reduced as were resident-reported cases of Lyme disease. Number of resident-reported cases of Lyme disease per 100 households was strongly correlated to deer density in the community. Reducing deer density to 5.1 deer per square kilometer resulted in a 76% reduction in tick abundance, 70% reduction in the entomological risk index, and 80% reduction in resident-reported cases of Lyme disease in the community from before to after a hunt was initiated.

  17. How selection structures species abundance distributions

    PubMed Central

    Magurran, Anne E.; Henderson, Peter A.

    2012-01-01

    How do species divide resources to produce the characteristic species abundance distributions seen in nature? One way to resolve this problem is to examine how the biomass (or capacity) of the spatial guilds that combine to produce an abundance distribution is allocated among species. Here we argue that selection on body size varies across guilds occupying spatially distinct habitats. Using an exceptionally well-characterized estuarine fish community, we show that biomass is concentrated in large bodied species in guilds where habitat structure provides protection from predators, but not in those guilds associated with open habitats and where safety in numbers is a mechanism for reducing predation risk. We further demonstrate that while there is temporal turnover in the abundances and identities of species that comprise these guilds, guild rank order is conserved across our 30-year time series. These results demonstrate that ecological communities are not randomly assembled but can be decomposed into guilds where capacity is predictably allocated among species. PMID:22787020

  18. Hepatozoon and Theileria species detected in ticks collected from mammals and snakes in Thailand.

    PubMed

    Sumrandee, Chalao; Baimai, Visut; Trinachartvanit, Wachareeporn; Ahantarig, Arunee

    2015-04-01

    We report the detection of Hepatozoon and Theileria in 103 ticks from mammals and snakes in Thailand. By using a genus-specific 18S rRNA PCR, Hepatozoon and Theileria spp. were detected in 8% and 18%, respectively, of ticks (n=79) removed from mammals. Of the ticks removed from snakes (n=24), 96% were infected with Hepatozoon spp., but none were infected with Theileria. Phylogenetic analysis revealed that Hepatozoon spp. detected from Dermacentor astrosignatus and Dermacentor auratus ticks from Wild boar (Sus scrofa) formed a phylogenetic group with many isolates of Hepatozoon felis that were distantly related to a species group containing Hepatozoon canis and Hepatozoon americanum. In contrast, a phylogenetic analysis of the Hepatozoon sequences of snake ticks revealed that Hepatozoon spp. from Amblyomma varanense from King cobra (Ophiophagus hannah) and Amblyomma helvolum ticks from Indochinese rat snake (Ptyas korros), and Asiatic water snake (Xenochrophis piscator) are grouped with Hepatozoon spp. recently isolated from Monocellate cobras, Reticulated pythons and Burmese pythons, all of Thai origin, and with Hepatozoon sp. 774c that has been detected from a tick species obtained from Argus monitors in Australia. A phylogenetic analysis demonstrated that Theileria spp. from Rhipicephalus (Boophilus) microplus, Haemaphysalis obesa, and Haemaphysalis lagrangei ticks from Sambar deer (Cervus unicolor) cluster with the Theileria cervi isolates WU11 and 239, and Theileria sp. Iwate 141. We report for the first time a Hepatozoon species that shares genetic similarity with Hepatozoon felis found in Dermacentor astrosignatus and Dermacentor auratus ticks collected from Wild boars in Thailand. In addition, we found the presence of a Theileria cervi-like sp. which suggests the potential role of Haemaphysalis lagrangei as a Theileria vector in Thailand. PMID:25736475

  19. Hepatozoon and Theileria species detected in ticks collected from mammals and snakes in Thailand.

    PubMed

    Sumrandee, Chalao; Baimai, Visut; Trinachartvanit, Wachareeporn; Ahantarig, Arunee

    2015-04-01

    We report the detection of Hepatozoon and Theileria in 103 ticks from mammals and snakes in Thailand. By using a genus-specific 18S rRNA PCR, Hepatozoon and Theileria spp. were detected in 8% and 18%, respectively, of ticks (n=79) removed from mammals. Of the ticks removed from snakes (n=24), 96% were infected with Hepatozoon spp., but none were infected with Theileria. Phylogenetic analysis revealed that Hepatozoon spp. detected from Dermacentor astrosignatus and Dermacentor auratus ticks from Wild boar (Sus scrofa) formed a phylogenetic group with many isolates of Hepatozoon felis that were distantly related to a species group containing Hepatozoon canis and Hepatozoon americanum. In contrast, a phylogenetic analysis of the Hepatozoon sequences of snake ticks revealed that Hepatozoon spp. from Amblyomma varanense from King cobra (Ophiophagus hannah) and Amblyomma helvolum ticks from Indochinese rat snake (Ptyas korros), and Asiatic water snake (Xenochrophis piscator) are grouped with Hepatozoon spp. recently isolated from Monocellate cobras, Reticulated pythons and Burmese pythons, all of Thai origin, and with Hepatozoon sp. 774c that has been detected from a tick species obtained from Argus monitors in Australia. A phylogenetic analysis demonstrated that Theileria spp. from Rhipicephalus (Boophilus) microplus, Haemaphysalis obesa, and Haemaphysalis lagrangei ticks from Sambar deer (Cervus unicolor) cluster with the Theileria cervi isolates WU11 and 239, and Theileria sp. Iwate 141. We report for the first time a Hepatozoon species that shares genetic similarity with Hepatozoon felis found in Dermacentor astrosignatus and Dermacentor auratus ticks collected from Wild boars in Thailand. In addition, we found the presence of a Theileria cervi-like sp. which suggests the potential role of Haemaphysalis lagrangei as a Theileria vector in Thailand.

  20. Wild Birds and Urban Ecology of Ticks and Tick-borne Pathogens, Chicago, Illinois, USA, 2005–2010

    PubMed Central

    Goldberg, Tony L.; Kitron, Uriel D.; Brawn, Jeffrey D.; Anderson, Tavis K.; Loss, Scott R.; Walker, Edward D.; Hamer, Gabriel L.

    2012-01-01

    Bird-facilitated introduction of ticks and associated pathogens is postulated to promote invasion of tick-borne zoonotic diseases into urban areas. Results of a longitudinal study conducted in suburban Chicago, Illinois, USA, during 2005–2010 show that 1.6% of 6,180 wild birds captured in mist nets harbored ticks. Tick species in order of abundance were Haemaphysalis leporispalustris, Ixodes dentatus, and I. scapularis, but 2 neotropical tick species of the genus Amblyomma were sampled during the spring migration. I. scapularis ticks were absent at the beginning of the study but constituted the majority of ticks by study end and were found predominantly on birds captured in areas designated as urban green spaces. Of 120 ticks, 5 were infected with Borrelia burgdorferi, spanning 3 ribotypes, but none were infected with Anaplasma phagocytophilum. Results allow inferences about propagule pressure for introduction of tick-borne diseases and emphasize the large sample sizes required to estimate this pressure. PMID:23017244

  1. Wild birds and urban ecology of ticks and tick-borne pathogens, Chicago, Illinois, USA, 2005-2010.

    PubMed

    Hamer, Sarah A; Goldberg, Tony L; Kitron, Uriel D; Brawn, Jeffrey D; Anderson, Tavis K; Loss, Scott R; Walker, Edward D; Hamer, Gabriel L

    2012-10-01

    Bird-facilitated introduction of ticks and associated pathogens is postulated to promote invasion of tick-borne zoonotic diseases into urban areas. Results of a longitudinal study conducted in suburban Chicago, Illinois, USA, during 2005-2010 show that 1.6% of 6,180 wild birds captured in mist nets harbored ticks. Tick species in order of abundance were Haemaphysalis leporispalustris, Ixodes dentatus, and I. scapularis, but 2 neotropical tick species of the genus Amblyomma were sampled during the spring migration. I. scapularis ticks were absent at the beginning of the study but constituted the majority of ticks by study end and were found predominantly on birds captured in areas designated as urban green spaces. Of 120 ticks, 5 were infected with Borrelia burgdorferi, spanning 3 ribotypes, but none were infected with Anaplasma phagocytophilum. Results allow inferences about propagule pressure for introduction of tick-borne diseases and emphasize the large sample sizes required to estimate this pressure. PMID:23017244

  2. Multiple Pathogens Including Potential New Species in Tick Vectors in Côte d’Ivoire

    PubMed Central

    Ehounoud, Cyrille Bilé; Yao, Kouassi Patrick; Dahmani, Mustapha; Achi, Yaba Louise; Amanzougaghene, Nadia; Kacou N’Douba, Adèle; N’Guessan, Jean David; Raoult, Didier; Fenollar, Florence; Mediannikov, Oleg

    2016-01-01

    Background Our study aimed to assess the presence of different pathogens in ticks collected in two regions in Côte d’Ivoire. Methodology/Principal Findings Real-time PCR and standard PCR assays coupled to sequencing were used. Three hundred and seventy eight (378) ticks (170 Amblyomma variegatum, 161 Rhipicepalus microplus, 3 Rhipicephalus senegalensis, 27 Hyalomma truncatum, 16 Hyalomma marginatum rufipes, and 1 Hyalomma impressum) were identified and analyzed. We identified as pathogenic bacteria, Rickettsia africae in Am. variegatum (90%), Rh. microplus (10%) and Hyalomma spp. (9%), Rickettsia aeschlimannii in Hyalomma spp. (23%), Rickettsia massiliae in Rh. senegalensis (33%) as well as Coxiella burnetii in 0.2%, Borrelia sp. in 0.2%, Anaplasma centrale in 0.2%, Anaplasma marginale in 0.5%, and Ehrlichia ruminantium in 0.5% of all ticks. Potential new species of Borrelia, Anaplasma, and Wolbachia were detected. Candidatus Borrelia africana and Candidatus Borrelia ivorensis (detected in three ticks) are phylogenetically distant from both the relapsing fever group and Lyme disease group borreliae; both were detected in Am. variegatum. Four new genotypes of bacteria from the Anaplasmataceae family were identified, namely Candidatus Anaplasma ivorensis (detected in three ticks), Candidatus Ehrlichia urmitei (in nine ticks), Candidatus Ehrlichia rustica (in four ticks), and Candidatus Wolbachia ivorensis (in one tick). Conclusions/Significance For the first time, we demonstrate the presence of different pathogens such as R. aeschlimannii, C. burnetii, Borrelia sp., A. centrale, A. marginale, and E. ruminantium in ticks in Côte d’Ivoire as well as potential new species of unknown pathogenicity. PMID:26771308

  3. Wild Cervids Are Host for Tick Vectors of Babesia Species with Zoonotic Capability in Belgium

    PubMed Central

    Wirtgen, Marc; Nahayo, Adrien; Caron, Yannick; Shiels, Brian; Saegerman, Claude; Losson, Bertrand; Linden, Annick

    2012-01-01

    Abstract Babesiosis is a tick-borne disease caused by different species of intraerythrocytic protozoan parasites within the genus Babesia. Different species of Babesia are described as potentially zoonotic and cause a malaria-like disease mainly in immunocompromised humans. Interest in the zoonotic potential of Babesia is growing and babesiosis has been described by some authors as an emergent zoonotic disease. The role of cervids to maintain tick populations and act as a reservoir host for some Babesia spp. with zoonotic capability is suspected. To investigate the range and infection rate of Babesia species, ticks were collected from wild cervids in southern Belgium during 2008. DNA extraction was performed for individual ticks, and each sample was evaluated for the absence of PCR inhibition using a PCR test. A Babesia spp. genus-specific PCR based on the 18S rRNA gene was applied to validated tick DNA extracts. A total of 1044 Ixodes ricinus ticks were collected and 1023 validated samples were subsequently screened for the presence of Babesia spp. DNA. Twenty-eight tick samples were found to be positive and identified after sequencing as containing DNA representing: Babesia divergens (3), B. divergens-like (5), Babesia sp. EU1 (11), Babesia sp. EU1-like (3), B. capreoli (2), or unknown Babesia sp. (4). This study confirms the presence of potentially zoonotic species and Babesia capreoli in Belgium, with a tick infection rate of 2.7% (95% CI 1.8,3.9%). Knowledge of the most common reservoir source for transmission of zoonotic Babesia spp. will be useful for models assessing the risk potential of this infection to humans. PMID:22214270

  4. Molecular Evidence of Bartonella Species in Ixodid Ticks and Domestic Animals in Palestine.

    PubMed

    Ereqat, Suheir; Nasereddin, Abdelmajeed; Vayssier-Taussat, Muriel; Abdelkader, Ahmad; Al-Jawabreh, Amer; Zaid, Taher; Azmi, Kifaya; Abdeen, Ziad

    2016-01-01

    Ticks play an important role in disease transmission as vectors for human and animal pathogens, including the Gram-negative pathogen Bartonella. Here, we evaluated the presence of Bartonella in ixodid ticks and domestic animals from Palestine. We tested 633 partly engorged ticks and 139 blood samples from domestic animals (dogs, sheep and camels) for Bartonella using ITS-PCR. Bartonella DNA was detected in 3.9% of the tested ticks. None of the ticks collected from sheep and goats were positive for Bartonella. Seventeen R. sanguineus ticks (17/391; 4.3%) collected from dogs were infected with B. rochalimae (n = 10), B. chomelii (n = 6), and B. koehlerae (n = 1). Four H. dromedarri ticks (4/63; 6.3%) obtained from camels were infected with B. bovis (n = 2) and B. rochalimae (n = 2). Among canine blood samples (n = 110), we found one asymptomatic female dog to be infected with B. rochalimae (0.9%). The detection of zoonotic Bartonella species in this study should raise awareness of these vector-borne diseases among physicians, veterinarians and public health workers and highlight the importance of surveillance and preventive measures in the region. PMID:27540374

  5. Molecular Evidence of Bartonella Species in Ixodid Ticks and Domestic Animals in Palestine

    PubMed Central

    Ereqat, Suheir; Nasereddin, Abdelmajeed; Vayssier-Taussat, Muriel; Abdelkader, Ahmad; Al-Jawabreh, Amer; Zaid, Taher; Azmi, Kifaya; Abdeen, Ziad

    2016-01-01

    Ticks play an important role in disease transmission as vectors for human and animal pathogens, including the Gram-negative pathogen Bartonella. Here, we evaluated the presence of Bartonella in ixodid ticks and domestic animals from Palestine. We tested 633 partly engorged ticks and 139 blood samples from domestic animals (dogs, sheep and camels) for Bartonella using ITS-PCR. Bartonella DNA was detected in 3.9% of the tested ticks. None of the ticks collected from sheep and goats were positive for Bartonella. Seventeen R. sanguineus ticks (17/391; 4.3%) collected from dogs were infected with B. rochalimae (n = 10), B. chomelii (n = 6), and B. koehlerae (n = 1). Four H. dromedarri ticks (4/63; 6.3%) obtained from camels were infected with B. bovis (n = 2) and B. rochalimae (n = 2). Among canine blood samples (n = 110), we found one asymptomatic female dog to be infected with B. rochalimae (0.9%). The detection of zoonotic Bartonella species in this study should raise awareness of these vector-borne diseases among physicians, veterinarians and public health workers and highlight the importance of surveillance and preventive measures in the region. PMID:27540374

  6. Spotted fever Rickettsia species in Hyalomma and Ixodes ticks infesting migratory birds in the European Mediterranean area

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background A few billion birds migrate annually between their breeding grounds in Europe and their wintering grounds in Africa. Many bird species are tick-infested, and as a result of their innate migratory behavior, they contribute significantly to the geographic distribution of pathogens, including spotted fever rickettsiae. The aim of the present study was to characterize, in samples from two consecutive years, the potential role of migrant birds captured in Europe as disseminators of Rickettsia-infected ticks. Methods Ticks were collected from a total of 14,789 birds during their seasonal migration northwards in spring 2009 and 2010 at bird observatories on two Mediterranean islands: Capri and Antikythira. All ticks were subjected to RNA extraction followed by cDNA synthesis and individually assayed with a real-time PCR targeting the citrate synthase (gltA) gene. For species identification of Rickettsia, multiple genes were sequenced. Results Three hundred and ninety-eight (2.7%) of all captured birds were tick-infested; some birds carried more than one tick. A total number of 734 ticks were analysed of which 353 ± 1 (48%) were Rickettsia-positive; 96% were infected with Rickettsia aeschlimannii and 4% with Rickettsia africae or unidentified Rickettsia species. The predominant tick taxon, Hyalomma marginatum sensu lato constituted 90% (n = 658) of the ticks collected. The remaining ticks were Ixodes frontalis, Amblyomma sp., Haemaphysalis sp., Rhipicephalus sp. and unidentified ixodids. Most ticks were nymphs (66%) followed by larvae (27%) and adult female ticks (0.5%). The majority (65%) of ticks was engorged and nearly all ticks contained visible blood. Conclusions Migratory birds appear to have a great impact on the dissemination of Rickettsia-infected ticks, some of which may originate from distant locations. The potential ecological, medical and veterinary implications of such Rickettsia infections need further examination. PMID:25011617

  7. Attenuation of species abundance distributions by sampling.

    PubMed

    Shimadzu, Hideyasu; Darnell, Ross

    2015-04-01

    Quantifying biodiversity aspects such as species presence/ absence, richness and abundance is an important challenge to answer scientific and resource management questions. In practice, biodiversity can only be assessed from biological material taken by surveys, a difficult task given limited time and resources. A type of random sampling, or often called sub-sampling, is a commonly used technique to reduce the amount of time and effort for investigating large quantities of biological samples. However, it is not immediately clear how (sub-)sampling affects the estimate of biodiversity aspects from a quantitative perspective. This paper specifies the effect of (sub-)sampling as attenuation of the species abundance distribution (SAD), and articulates how the sampling bias is induced to the SAD by random sampling. The framework presented also reveals some confusion in previous theoretical studies. PMID:26064626

  8. Attenuation of species abundance distributions by sampling

    PubMed Central

    Shimadzu, Hideyasu; Darnell, Ross

    2015-01-01

    Quantifying biodiversity aspects such as species presence/ absence, richness and abundance is an important challenge to answer scientific and resource management questions. In practice, biodiversity can only be assessed from biological material taken by surveys, a difficult task given limited time and resources. A type of random sampling, or often called sub-sampling, is a commonly used technique to reduce the amount of time and effort for investigating large quantities of biological samples. However, it is not immediately clear how (sub-)sampling affects the estimate of biodiversity aspects from a quantitative perspective. This paper specifies the effect of (sub-)sampling as attenuation of the species abundance distribution (SAD), and articulates how the sampling bias is induced to the SAD by random sampling. The framework presented also reveals some confusion in previous theoretical studies. PMID:26064626

  9. Sympatric occurrence of Ixodes ricinus, Dermacentor reticulatus and Haemaphysalis concinna ticks and Rickettsia and Babesia species in Slovakia.

    PubMed

    Svehlová, Andrea; Berthová, Lenka; Sallay, Balázs; Boldiš, Vojtech; Sparagano, Olivier A E; Spitalská, Eva

    2014-09-01

    Vojka nad Dunajom in the south-west of the Slovak Republic is a locality with sympatric occurrence of 3 species of ticks. This study investigated the spatial distribution of Dermacentor reticulatus, Ixodes ricinus, and Haemaphysalis concinna ticks in this area and determined the prevalence of Babesia and Rickettsia species in questing adults of these tick species considered as potential risk for humans and animals. Ticks were collected by blanket dragging over the vegetation from September 2011 to October 2012. All ticks were subjected to DNA extraction and individually assayed with PCR-based methods targeting the gltA, sca4, 23S rRNA genes of Rickettsia spp. and the 18S rRNA gene of Babesia spp. D. reticulatus was the dominant species occurring in this area (67.7%, n=600), followed by I. ricinus (31.8%, n=282) and H. concinna (0.5%, n=4) ticks. Rickettsial infection was determined in 10.8% (n=65) and 11.7% (n=33) of D. reticulatus and I. ricinus ticks, respectively. Babesia spp. infection was confirmed in 1.8% (n=11) of D. reticulatus and 0.4% (n=1) of I. ricinus ticks. DNA of 6 different pathogenic tick-borne species, Rickettsia helvetica, Rickettsia monacensis, Rickettsia slovaca, Rickettsia raoultii, Babesia canis, and Babesia venatorum were identified in this locality with sympatric occurrence of I. ricinus, D. reticulatus, and H. concinna ticks.

  10. Influence of the Biotope on the Tick Infestation of Cattle and on the Tick-Borne Pathogen Repertoire of Cattle Ticks in Ethiopia

    PubMed Central

    Hornok, Sándor; Abichu, Getachew; Meli, Marina L.; Tánczos, Balázs; Sulyok, Kinga M.; Gyuranecz, Miklós; Gönczi, Enikő; Farkas, Róbert; Hofmann-Lehmann, Regina

    2014-01-01

    Background The majority of vector-borne infections occur in the tropics, including Africa, but molecular eco-epidemiological studies are seldom reported from these regions. In particular, most previously published data on ticks in Ethiopia focus on species distribution, and only a few molecular studies on the occurrence of tick-borne pathogens or on ecological factors influencing these. The present study was undertaken to evaluate, if ticks collected from cattle in different Ethiopian biotopes harbour (had access to) different pathogens. Methods In South-Western Ethiopia 1032 hard ticks were removed from cattle grazing in three kinds of tick biotopes. DNA was individually extracted from one specimen of both sexes of each tick species per cattle. These samples were molecularly analysed for the presence of tick-borne pathogens. Results Amblyomma variegatum was significantly more abundant on mid highland, than on moist highland. Rhipicephalus decoloratus was absent from savannah lowland, where virtually only A. cohaerens was found. In the ticks Coxiella burnetii had the highest prevalence on savannah lowland. PCR positivity to Theileria spp. did not appear to depend on the biotope, but some genotypes were unique to certain tick species. Significantly more A. variegatum specimens were rickettsia-positive, than those of other tick species. The presence of rickettsiae (R. africae) appeared to be associated with mid highland in case of A. variegatum and A. cohaerens. The low level of haemoplasma positivity seemed to be equally distributed among the tick species, but was restricted to one biotope type. Conclusions The tick biotope, in which cattle are grazed, will influence not only the tick burden of these hosts, but also the spectrum of pathogens in their ticks. Thus, the presence of pathogens with alternative (non-tick-borne) transmission routes, with transstadial or with transovarial transmission by ticks appeared to be associated with the biotope type, with the tick

  11. Observations on changes in abundance of questing Ixodes ricinus, castor bean tick, over a 35-year period in the eastern part of its range (Russia, Tula region).

    PubMed

    Korotkov, Yu; Kozlova, T; Kozlovskaya, L

    2015-06-01

    Ixodes ricinus (Acari: Ixodidae) L. transmit a wide variety of pathogens to vertebrates including viruses, bacteria and protozoa. Understanding of the epidemiology of tick-borne infections requires basic knowledge of the regional and local factors influencing tick population dynamics. The present study describes the results of monitoring of a questing I. ricinus population, conducted over 35 years (1977-2011) in the eastern, poorly studied part of its range (Russia, Tula region). We have found that the multiannual average abundance of ticks is small and varies depending on the biotope and degree of urban transformation. Tick abundance for the first 14 years of observations (1977-1990) was at the lower limit of the sensitivity of our methods throughout the study area (0.1-0.9 specimens per 1-km transect). In the following 21 years (1991-2011), a manifold increase in abundance was observed, which reached 18.1 ± 1.8 individuals per 1-km transect in moist floodplain terraces, and 4.8 ± 0.9 in xerophylic hill woods. Long-term growth of tick abundance occurred in spite of a relatively constant abundance of small mammals and only minor fluctuations in the abundance of large wild animals. Climate and anthropogenic changes appear to be the main contributors to increased abundance of the tick.

  12. Bacterial Profiling Reveals Novel "Ca. Neoehrlichia", Ehrlichia, and Anaplasma Species in Australian Human-Biting Ticks.

    PubMed

    Gofton, Alexander W; Doggett, Stephen; Ratchford, Andrew; Oskam, Charlotte L; Paparini, Andrea; Ryan, Una; Irwin, Peter

    2015-01-01

    In Australia, a conclusive aetiology of Lyme disease-like illness in human patients remains elusive, despite growing numbers of people presenting with symptoms attributed to tick bites. In the present study, we surveyed the microbial communities harboured by human-biting ticks from across Australia to identify bacteria that may contribute to this syndrome. Universal PCR primers were used to amplify the V1-2 hyper-variable region of bacterial 16S rRNA genes in DNA samples from individual Ixodes holocyclus (n = 279), Amblyomma triguttatum (n = 167), Haemaphysalis bancrofti (n = 7), and H. longicornis (n = 7) ticks. The 16S amplicons were sequenced on the Illumina MiSeq platform and analysed in USEARCH, QIIME, and BLAST to assign genus and species-level taxonomies. Nested PCR and Sanger sequencing were used to confirm the NGS data and further analyse novel findings. All 460 ticks were negative for Borrelia spp. by both NGS and nested PCR analysis. Two novel "Candidatus Neoehrlichia" spp. were identified in 12.9% of I. holocyclus ticks. A novel Anaplasma sp. was identified in 1.8% of A. triguttatum ticks, and a novel Ehrlichia sp. was identified in both A. triguttatum (1.2%) ticks and a single I. holocyclus (0.6%) tick. Further phylogenetic analysis of novel "Ca. Neoehrlichia", Anaplasma and Ehrlichia based on 1,265 bp 16S rRNA gene sequences suggests that these are new species. Determining whether these newly discovered organisms cause disease in humans and animals, like closely related bacteria do abroad, is of public health importance and requires further investigation. PMID:26709826

  13. Tick infestation patterns in free ranging African buffalo (Syncercus caffer): Effects of host innate immunity and niche segregation among tick species☆

    PubMed Central

    Anderson, Kadie; Ezenwa, Vanessa O.; Jolles, Anna E.

    2012-01-01

    Ticks are of vast importance to livestock health, and contribute to conflicts between wildlife conservation and agricultural interests; but factors driving tick infestation patterns on wild hosts are not well understood. We studied tick infestation patterns on free-ranging African buffalo (Syncercus caffer), asking (i) is there evidence for niche segregation among tick species?; and (ii) how do host characteristics affect variation in tick abundance among hosts? We identified ticks and estimated tick burdens on 134 adult female buffalo from two herds at Kruger National Park, South Africa. To assess niche segregation, we evaluated attachment site preferences and tested for correlations between abundances of different tick species. To investigate which host factors may drive variability in tick abundance, we measured age, body condition, reproductive and immune status in all hosts, and examined their effects on tick burdens. Two tick species were abundant on buffalo, Amblyomma hebraeum and Rhipicephalus evertsi evertsi. A. hebraeum were found primarily in the inguinal and axillary regions; R. e. evertsi attached exclusively in the perianal area. Abundances of A. hebraeum and R. e. evertsi on the host were unrelated. These results suggest spatial niche segregation between A. hebraeum and R. e. evertsi on the buffalo. Buffalo with stronger innate immunity, and younger buffalo, had fewer ticks. Buffalo with low body condition scores, and pregnant buffalo, had higher tick burdens, but these effects varied between the two herds we sampled. This study is one of the first to link ectoparasite abundance patterns and immunity in a free-ranging mammalian host population. Based on independent abundances of A. hebraeum and R. e. evertsi on individual buffalo, we would expect no association between the diseases these ticks transmit. Longitudinal studies linking environmental variability with host immunity are needed to understand tick infestation patterns and the dynamics of tick

  14. Babesia spp. in questing ticks from eastern Poland: prevalence and species diversity.

    PubMed

    Wójcik-Fatla, Angelina; Zając, Violetta; Sawczyn, Anna; Cisak, Ewa; Dutkiewicz, Jacek

    2015-08-01

    A total of 853 questing Ixodes ricinus males, females, and nymphs and of 582 questing Dermacentor reticulatus males and females were collected from vegetation on the territory of the Lublin province (eastern Poland). The ticks were examined for the presence of Babesia by PCR detecting part of 18S ribosomal RNA (rRNA) gene and nuclear small subunit rRNA (SS-rDNA) for determining of Babesia spp. and Babesia microti, respectively. The overall incidence of Babesia strains in I. ricinus ticks was 4.6%. Three species of Babesia were identified. The prevalent species was B. microti which occurred in 2.8% of ticks, while Babesia venatorum, Babesia divergens, and unidentified Babesia species were found at the frequency of 1.2, 0.2, and 0.3%, respectively. Altogether, B. microti constituted 61.5% of the total strains detected in I. ricinus, B. venatorum-25.7%, B. divergens-5.1%, and unidentified Babesia species-7.7%. The prevalence of Babesia species in I. ricinus did not depend significantly on locality (χ(2) = 1.885, P = 0.390) nor on the tick stage (χ(2) = 4.874, P = 0.087). The incidence of Babesia strains in D. reticulatus ticks was 2.7%. Two species of Babesia were identified. Again, the prevalent species was B. microti which occurred in 2.1% of ticks, while B. canis was found in 0.7% of ticks. In one D. reticulatus female, B. canis and B. microti co-infection was found. Altogether, B. microti constituted 75% of the total strains detected in D. reticulatus while B. canis formed 25% of the total strains. The frequency of the occurrence of Babesia species in D. reticulatus did not depend significantly on locality (χ(2) = 0.463, P = 0.793). The difference between the prevalence of Babesia in males and females of D. reticulatus was insignificant (P = 0.0954); nymphs were not found. The dominance of B. microti in the species composition of tick-borne Babesia found in this study was typical for eastern Europe. In conclusion, the results

  15. Abundance of introduced species at home predicts abundance away in herbaceous communities

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Firn, Jennifer; Moore, Joslin L.; MacDougall, Andrew S.; Borer, Elizabeth T.; Seabloom, Eric W.; HilleRisLambers, Janneke; Harpole, W. Stanley; Cleland, Elsa E.; Brown, Cynthia S.; Knops, Johannes M.H.; Prober, Suzanne M.; Pyke, David A.; Farrell, Kelly A.; Bakker, John D.; O'Halloran, Lydia R.; Adler, Peter B.; Collins, Scott L.; D'Antonio, Carla M.; Crawley, Michael J.; Wolkovich, Elizabeth M.; La Pierre, Kimberly J.; Melbourne, Brett A.; Hautier, Yann; Morgan, John W.; Leakey, Andrew D.B.; Kay, Adam; McCulley, Rebecca; Davies, Kendi F.; Stevens, Carly J.; Chu, Cheng-Jin; Holl, Karen D.; Klein, Julia A.; Fay, Phillip A.; Hagenah, Nicole; Kirkman, Kevin P.; Buckley, Yvonne M.

    2011-01-01

    Many ecosystems worldwide are dominated by introduced plant species, leading to loss of biodiversity and ecosystem function. A common but rarely tested assumption is that these plants are more abundant in introduced vs. native communities, because ecological or evolutionary-based shifts in populations underlie invasion success. Here, data for 26 herbaceous species at 39 sites, within eight countries, revealed that species abundances were similar at native (home) and introduced (away) sites - grass species were generally abundant home and away, while forbs were low in abundance, but more abundant at home. Sites with six or more of these species had similar community abundance hierarchies, suggesting that suites of introduced species are assembling similarly on different continents. Overall, we found that substantial changes to populations are not necessarily a pre-condition for invasion success and that increases in species abundance are unusual. Instead, abundance at home predicts abundance away, a potentially useful additional criterion for biosecurity programmes.

  16. Impact of Climate Trends on Tick-Borne Pathogen Transmission

    PubMed Central

    Estrada-Peña, Agustín; Ayllón, Nieves; de la Fuente, José

    2012-01-01

    Recent advances in climate research together with a better understanding of tick–pathogen interactions, the distribution of ticks and the diagnosis of tick-borne pathogens raise questions about the impact of environmental factors on tick abundance and spread and the prevalence and transmission of tick-borne pathogens. While undoubtedly climate plays a role in the changes in distribution and seasonal abundance of ticks, it is always difficult to disentangle factors impacting on the abundance of tick hosts from those exerted by human habits. All together, climate, host abundance, and social factors may explain the upsurge of epidemics transmitted by ticks to humans. Herein we focused on tick-borne pathogens that affect humans with epidemic potential. Borrelia burgdorferi s.l. (Lyme disease), Anaplasma phagocytophilum (human granulocytic anaplasmosis), and tick-borne encephalitis virus (tick-borne encephalitis) are transmitted by Ixodes spp. Crimean–Congo hemorrhagic fever virus (Crimean–Congo hemorrhagic fever) is transmitted by Hyalomma spp. In this review, we discussed how vector tick species occupy the habitat as a function of different climatic factors, and how these factors impact on tick survival and seasonality. How molecular events at the tick–pathogen interface impact on pathogen transmission is also discussed. Results from statistically and biologically derived models are compared to show that while statistical models are able to outline basic information about tick distributions, biologically derived models are necessary to evaluate pathogen transmission rates and understand the effect of climatic variables and host abundance patterns on pathogen transmission. The results of these studies could be used to build early alert systems able to identify the main factors driving the subtle changes in tick distribution and seasonality and the prevalence of tick-borne pathogens. PMID:22470348

  17. Diversity and distribution of tick species (Acari: Ixodidae) associated with human otoacariasis and socio-ecological risk factors of tick infestations in Sri Lanka.

    PubMed

    Ariyarathne, S; Apanaskevich, D A; Amarasinghe, P H; Rajakaruna, R S

    2016-09-01

    Tick infestation in humans is a major public health concern. The diversity and distribution of tick species associated with human otoacariasis was studied in five districts: Anuradhapura, Kandy, Kurunegala, Nuwara Eliya and Ratnapura in the main agro-climatic zones of Sri Lanka. Ticks from patients attending the ear, nose and throat clinics of the General Hospitals were collected during a 3 year period. In total 426 ticks were collected. Most human otoacariasis cases were reported from Kandy (33.8 %) and the fewest from Nuwara Eliya (8.2 %). Of the five tick species identified, nymphs of Dermacentor auratus constituted 90.6 % of the collection. Rhipicephalus sanguineus, Hyalomma isaaci, Haemaphysalis bispinosa and Otobius megnini were found rarely infesting humans possibly as an accidental host; H. bispinosa and O. megnini in the human ear canal were first time records in Sri Lanka. Females and children under 10 years were identified as risk groups of human otoacariasis. Subsequently, a field study was carried out to determine socio-ecological risk factors of human tick infestations in the five districts. Based on hospital data, eight villages with high prevalence of otoacariasis were selected from each district. A total 40 villages were visited and 1674 household members were interviewed. Involvement in outdoor activities, presence of wild animals around the house, location of the house in close proximity to a forest and occupation were identified as major risk factors.

  18. Diversity and distribution of tick species (Acari: Ixodidae) associated with human otoacariasis and socio-ecological risk factors of tick infestations in Sri Lanka.

    PubMed

    Ariyarathne, S; Apanaskevich, D A; Amarasinghe, P H; Rajakaruna, R S

    2016-09-01

    Tick infestation in humans is a major public health concern. The diversity and distribution of tick species associated with human otoacariasis was studied in five districts: Anuradhapura, Kandy, Kurunegala, Nuwara Eliya and Ratnapura in the main agro-climatic zones of Sri Lanka. Ticks from patients attending the ear, nose and throat clinics of the General Hospitals were collected during a 3 year period. In total 426 ticks were collected. Most human otoacariasis cases were reported from Kandy (33.8 %) and the fewest from Nuwara Eliya (8.2 %). Of the five tick species identified, nymphs of Dermacentor auratus constituted 90.6 % of the collection. Rhipicephalus sanguineus, Hyalomma isaaci, Haemaphysalis bispinosa and Otobius megnini were found rarely infesting humans possibly as an accidental host; H. bispinosa and O. megnini in the human ear canal were first time records in Sri Lanka. Females and children under 10 years were identified as risk groups of human otoacariasis. Subsequently, a field study was carried out to determine socio-ecological risk factors of human tick infestations in the five districts. Based on hospital data, eight villages with high prevalence of otoacariasis were selected from each district. A total 40 villages were visited and 1674 household members were interviewed. Involvement in outdoor activities, presence of wild animals around the house, location of the house in close proximity to a forest and occupation were identified as major risk factors. PMID:27382981

  19. Detection of Bartonella species from ticks, mites and small mammals in Korea.

    PubMed

    Kim, Chul-Min; Kim, Ji-Young; Yi, Ying-Hua; Lee, Mi-Jin; Cho, Mae-rim; Shah, Devendra H; Klein, Terry A; Kim, Heung-Chul; Song, Jin-Won; Chong, Sung-Tae; O'Guinn, Monica L; Lee, John S; Lee, In-Yong; Park, Jin-Ho; Chae, Joon-Seok

    2005-12-01

    We investigated the prevalence of Bartonella infections in ticks, mites and small mammals (rodents, insectivores and weasels) collected during 2001 through 2004, from various military installations and training sites in Korea, using PCR and sequence analysis of 16S rRNA, 23S rRNA and groEL heat shock protein genes. The prevalence of Bartonella spp. was 5.2% (n = 1,305 sample pools) in ticks, 19.1% (n = 21) in mesostigmatid mites and 13.7% (n = 424 individuals) in small mammals. The prevalence within the family Ixodidae was, 4.4% (n = 1,173) in Haemaphysalis longicornis (scrub tick), 2.7% (n = 74) in H. flava, 5.0% (n = 20) in Ixodes nipponensis, 11.1% (n = 9) in I. turdus, 33.3% (n = 3) in I. persulcatus and 42.3% (n = 26) in Ixodes spp. ticks. In rodents, the prevalence rate was, 6.7% (n = 373) in Apodemus agrarius (striped field mouse) and 11.1% (n = 9) in Eothenomys regulus (Korean red-backed vole) and in an insectivore,Crocidura lasiura, 12.1% (n = 33). Neither of the two weasels were positive for Bartonella spp. Phylogenetic analysis based on amino acid sequence of a portion of the groEL gene amplified from one A. agrarius spleen was identical to B. elizabethae species. We demonstrated the presence of Bartonella DNA in H. longicornis, H. flava and I. nipponensis ticks, indicating that these ticks should be added to the growing list of potential tick vectors and warrants further detailed investigations to disclose their possible roles in Bartonella infection cycles.

  20. Molecular Detection of Rickettsia Species Within Ticks (Acari: Ixodidae) Collected from Arkansas United States.

    PubMed

    Trout Fryxell, R T; Steelman, C D; Szalanski, A L; Billingsley, P M; Williamson, P C

    2015-05-01

    Rocky Mountain spotted fever (RMSF), caused by the etiological agent Rickettsia rickettsii, is the most severe and frequently reported rickettsial illness in the United States, and is commonly diagnosed throughout the southeast. With the discoveries of Rickettsia parkeri and other spotted fever group rickettsiae (SFGR) in ticks, it remains inconclusive if the cases reported as RMSF are truly caused by R. rickettsii or other SFGR. Arkansas reports one of the highest incidence rates of RMSF in the country; consequently, to identify the rickettsiae in Arkansas, 1,731 ticks, 250 white-tailed deer, and 189 canines were screened by polymerase chain reaction (PCR) for the rickettsial genes gltA, rompB, and ompA. None of the white-tailed deer were positive, while two of the canines (1.1%) and 502 (29.0%) of the ticks were PCR positive. Five different tick species were PCR positive: 244 (37%) Amblyomma americanum L., 130 (38%) Ixodes scapularis Say, 65 (39%) Amblyomma maculatum (Koch), 30 (9%) Rhipicephalus sanguineus Latreille, 7 (4%) Dermacentor variabilis Say, and 26 (44%) unidentified Amblyomma ticks. None of the sequenced products were homologous to R. rickettsii. The most common Rickettsia via rompB amplification was Rickettsia montanensis and nonpathogenic Candidatus Rickettsia amblyommii, whereas with ompA amplification the most common Rickettsia was Ca. R. amblyommii. Many tick specimens collected in northwest Arkansas were PCR positive and these were commonly A. americanum harboring Ca. R. amblyommii, a currently nonpathogenic Rickettsia. Data reported here indicate that pathogenic R. rickettsii was absent from these ticks and suggest by extension that other SFGR are likely the causative agents for Arkansas diagnosed RMSF cases.

  1. Molecular Detection of Rickettsia Species Within Ticks (Acari: Ixodidae) Collected from Arkansas United States.

    PubMed

    Trout Fryxell, R T; Steelman, C D; Szalanski, A L; Billingsley, P M; Williamson, P C

    2015-05-01

    Rocky Mountain spotted fever (RMSF), caused by the etiological agent Rickettsia rickettsii, is the most severe and frequently reported rickettsial illness in the United States, and is commonly diagnosed throughout the southeast. With the discoveries of Rickettsia parkeri and other spotted fever group rickettsiae (SFGR) in ticks, it remains inconclusive if the cases reported as RMSF are truly caused by R. rickettsii or other SFGR. Arkansas reports one of the highest incidence rates of RMSF in the country; consequently, to identify the rickettsiae in Arkansas, 1,731 ticks, 250 white-tailed deer, and 189 canines were screened by polymerase chain reaction (PCR) for the rickettsial genes gltA, rompB, and ompA. None of the white-tailed deer were positive, while two of the canines (1.1%) and 502 (29.0%) of the ticks were PCR positive. Five different tick species were PCR positive: 244 (37%) Amblyomma americanum L., 130 (38%) Ixodes scapularis Say, 65 (39%) Amblyomma maculatum (Koch), 30 (9%) Rhipicephalus sanguineus Latreille, 7 (4%) Dermacentor variabilis Say, and 26 (44%) unidentified Amblyomma ticks. None of the sequenced products were homologous to R. rickettsii. The most common Rickettsia via rompB amplification was Rickettsia montanensis and nonpathogenic Candidatus Rickettsia amblyommii, whereas with ompA amplification the most common Rickettsia was Ca. R. amblyommii. Many tick specimens collected in northwest Arkansas were PCR positive and these were commonly A. americanum harboring Ca. R. amblyommii, a currently nonpathogenic Rickettsia. Data reported here indicate that pathogenic R. rickettsii was absent from these ticks and suggest by extension that other SFGR are likely the causative agents for Arkansas diagnosed RMSF cases. PMID:26334827

  2. Modeling species-abundance relationships in multi-species collections

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Peng, S.; Yin, Z.; Ren, H.; Guo, Q.

    2003-01-01

    Species-abundance relationship is one of the most fundamental aspects of community ecology. Since Motomura first developed the geometric series model to describe the feature of community structure, ecologists have developed many other models to fit the species-abundance data in communities. These models can be classified into empirical and theoretical ones, including (1) statistical models, i.e., negative binomial distribution (and its extension), log-series distribution (and its extension), geometric distribution, lognormal distribution, Poisson-lognormal distribution, (2) niche models, i.e., geometric series, broken stick, overlapping niche, particulate niche, random assortment, dominance pre-emption, dominance decay, random fraction, weighted random fraction, composite niche, Zipf or Zipf-Mandelbrot model, and (3) dynamic models describing community dynamics and restrictive function of environment on community. These models have different characteristics and fit species-abundance data in various communities or collections. Among them, log-series distribution, lognormal distribution, geometric series, and broken stick model have been most widely used.

  3. Efficacy of a novel oral formulation of sarolaner (Simparica™) against five common tick species infesting dogs in the United States.

    PubMed

    Six, Robert H; Everett, William R; Young, David R; Carter, Lori; Mahabir, Sean P; Honsberger, Nicole A; Myers, Melanie R; Holzmer, Susan; Chapin, Sara; Rugg, Jady J

    2016-05-30

    The efficacy of a single oral treatment with sarolaner (Simparica™, Zoetis), a novel isoxazoline compound, was evaluated against five tick species known to infest dogs in the United States. A total of 10 laboratory studies, two against each species, were conducted using adult purpose-bred mongrels or Beagle dogs. In each study, 16 dogs were randomly allocated to one of two treatment groups based on pre-treatment host-suitability tick counts. Dogs were infested with approximately 50 unfed adult Amblyomma americanum, Amblyomma maculatum, Dermacentor variabilis, Ixodes scapularis or Rhipicephalus sanguineus ticks on Days -2, 5, 12, 19, 26 and 33. On Day 0, dogs were treated with a placebo or a sarolaner tablet providing a minimum dose of 2 mg/kg. Tick counts were conducted 48h after treatment and after each subsequent weekly re-infestation. There were no treatment-related adverse reactions during any of the studies. Dogs in the placebo-treated group maintained tick infestations throughout the studies. Geometric mean live tick counts were significantly lower (P≤0.0001) in the sarolaner-treated group compared to the tick counts in the placebo group at all timepoints. Treatment with sarolaner resulted in ≥99.6% efficacy against existing infestations of all five tick species within 48h. The efficacy against weekly post-treatment re-infestations of all tick species was ≥96.9% for at least 35 days after treatment. Thus, a single dose of sarolaner administered orally at the minimum dosage of 2mg/kg, resulted in excellent efficacy within 48h against existing tick infestations, and against weekly re-infestations for 35 days after treatment. These studies confirmed that administration of the minimum dose of sarolaner will provide rapid treatment of existing infestations and give at least one month of control against re-infestation by the common tick species affecting dogs in the US. PMID:26935819

  4. Ticks associated with the three largest wild ruminant species in southern Africa.

    PubMed

    Horak, I G; Golezardy, H; Uys, A C

    2007-09-01

    The objective of this study was to assess the host status of the three largest southern African wild ruminants, namely giraffes, Giraffa camelopardalis, African buffaloes, Syncerus caffer, and eland, Taurotragus oryx for ixodid ticks. To this end recently acquired unpublished data are added here to already published findings on the tick burdens of these animals, and the total numbers and species of ticks recorded on 12 giraffes, 18 buffaloes and 36 eland are summarized and discussed. Twenty-eight ixodid tick species were recovered. All stages of development of ten species, namely Amblyomma hebraeum, Rhipicephalus (Boophilus) decoloratus, Haemaphysalis silacea, Ixodes pilosus group, Margaropus winthemi, Rhipicephalus appendiculatus, Rhipicephalus evertsi evertsi, Rhipicephalus glabroscutatum, Rhipicephalus maculatus and Rhipicephalus muehlensi were collected. The adults of 13 species, of which the immature stages use small mammals as hosts, namely Haemaphysalis aciculifer, Hyalomma glabrum, Hyalomma marginatum rufipes, Hyalomma truncatum, Ixodes rubicundus, Rhipicephalus capensis, Rhipicephalus exophthalmos, Rhipicephalus follis, Rhipicephalus gertrudae, Rhipicephalus lounsburyi, Rhipicephalus lunulatus, Rhipicephalus pravus group and Rhipicephalus simus, were also collected.

  5. Ticks associated with the three largest wild ruminant species in southern Africa.

    PubMed

    Horak, I G; Golezardy, H; Uys, A C

    2007-09-01

    The objective of this study was to assess the host status of the three largest southern African wild ruminants, namely giraffes, Giraffa camelopardalis, African buffaloes, Syncerus caffer, and eland, Taurotragus oryx for ixodid ticks. To this end recently acquired unpublished data are added here to already published findings on the tick burdens of these animals, and the total numbers and species of ticks recorded on 12 giraffes, 18 buffaloes and 36 eland are summarized and discussed. Twenty-eight ixodid tick species were recovered. All stages of development of ten species, namely Amblyomma hebraeum, Rhipicephalus (Boophilus) decoloratus, Haemaphysalis silacea, Ixodes pilosus group, Margaropus winthemi, Rhipicephalus appendiculatus, Rhipicephalus evertsi evertsi, Rhipicephalus glabroscutatum, Rhipicephalus maculatus and Rhipicephalus muehlensi were collected. The adults of 13 species, of which the immature stages use small mammals as hosts, namely Haemaphysalis aciculifer, Hyalomma glabrum, Hyalomma marginatum rufipes, Hyalomma truncatum, Ixodes rubicundus, Rhipicephalus capensis, Rhipicephalus exophthalmos, Rhipicephalus follis, Rhipicephalus gertrudae, Rhipicephalus lounsburyi, Rhipicephalus lunulatus, Rhipicephalus pravus group and Rhipicephalus simus, were also collected. PMID:17933365

  6. Detection and identification of Rickettsia species in Ixodes tick populations from Estonia.

    PubMed

    Katargina, Olga; Geller, Julia; Ivanova, Anna; Värv, Kairi; Tefanova, Valentina; Vene, Sirkka; Lundkvist, Åke; Golovljova, Irina

    2015-09-01

    A total of 1640 ticks collected in different geographical parts of Estonia were screened for the presence of Rickettsia species DNA by real-time PCR. DNA of Rickettsia was detected in 83 out of 1640 questing ticks with an overall prevalence of 5.1%. The majority of the ticks infected by rickettsiae were Ixodes ricinus (74 of 83), while 9 of the 83 positive ticks were Ixodes persulcatus. For rickettsial species identification, a part of the citrate synthase gltA gene was sequenced. The majority of the positive samples were identified as Rickettsia helvetica (81 out of 83) and two of the samples were identified as Rickettsia monacensis and Candidatus R. tarasevichiae, respectively. Genetic characterization based on the partial gltA gene showed that the Estonian sequences within the R. helvetica, R. monacensis and Candidatus R. tarasevichiae species demonstrated 100% similarity with sequences deposited in GenBank, originating from Rickettsia species distributed over large territories from Europe to Asia.

  7. Real-time PCR-based identification of Borrelia burgdorferi sensu lato species in ticks collected from humans in Romania.

    PubMed

    Briciu, Violeta T; Meyer, Fabian; Sebah, Daniela; Tăţulescu, Doina F; Coroiu, Georgiana; Lupşe, Mihaela; Carstina, Dumitru; Mihalca, Andrei D; Hizo-Teufel, Cecilia; Klier, Christiane; Huber, Ingrid; Fingerle, Volker

    2014-09-01

    The aims of our study were to determine (i) which tick species bite humans in Romania and (ii) the prevalence of Borrelia (B.) burgdorferi genospecies in these ticks. All ticks collected from patients who presented to the Clinic of Infectious Diseases Cluj Napoca in spring/summer 2010 were morphologically identified by an entomologist and tested for B. burgdorferi genospecies prevalence by a real-time PCR assay targeting the hbb gene and melting curve analysis. Out of 532 ticks, 518 were Ixodes ricinus, 10 Dermacentor marginatus, and 3 Haemaphysalis spp. ticks, and one unidentified tick due to destruction. Since evaluation of the hbb PCR revealed that it was not possible to differentiate between B. spielmanii/B. valaisiana and B. garinii/B. bavariensis, sequencing of an 800-bp fragment of the ospA gene was performed in these cases. Out of 389 investigated ticks, 43 were positive by hbb PCR for B. burgdorferi sensu lato. The positive samples were 42 Ixodes ricinus (11.1% B. burgdorferi sensu lato prevalence) and the one unidentified tick. Species identification revealed the presence of mainly B. afzelii, but also of B. garinii, B. burgdorferi sensu stricto, B. valaisiana, and B. lusitaniae. In 4 samples, differentiation between B. spielmanii/B. valaisiana was impossible. Our study shows that the most relevant human pathogenic B. burgdorferi genospecies - predominantly B. afzelii - are present in ticks collected from Romanian patients.

  8. Molecular detection of Rickettsia species in Amblyomma ticks collected from snakes in Thailand.

    PubMed

    Sumrandee, Chalao; Hirunkanokpun, Supanee; Doornbos, Kathryn; Kitthawee, Sangvorn; Baimai, Visut; Grubhoffer, Libor; Trinachartvanit, Wachareeporn; Ahantarig, Arunee

    2014-10-01

    Some reptile ticks are potential vectors of pathogens such as spotted fever group (SFG) rickettsiae. Here, we report for the first time in detail the molecular evidence, DNA sequences and phylogenetic studies, for the presence of Rickettsia spp. in Amblyomma ticks (Amblyomma helvolum and Amblyomma varanense) from snakes in Thailand. A total of 24 tick samples was collected from 4 snake species and identified. A phylogenetic analysis inferred from the partial sequences of the gltA gene indicated that the Rickettsia spp. from 2 Amblyomma helvolum and 1 Amblyomma varanense belong to the same group as the SFG rickettsiae, which are closely related to Rickettsia raoultii strains. In contrast, there was 1 Rickettsia sp. from Amblyomma helvolum grouped into the same clade with other SFG rickettsiae (Rickettsia tamurae, Rickettsia monacensis, and a Rickettsia endosymbiont of Amblyomma dubitatum from Brazil). However, another Rickettsia sp. from Amblyomma varanense was closely related to Rickettsia bellii and Rickettsia sp. strain RDa420 from Thailand. In addition, from phylogenetic results based on the 16S rRNA gene and a concatenated tree of the 3 genes (gltA, ompA, and ompB), we found what may be a novel SFG rickettsia species closely related to Rickettsia raoultii (from both Amblyomma varanense and Amblyomma helvolum). In conclusion, our findings are the first report on the presence of novel SFG rickettsiae in 2 snake tick species, Amblyomma varanense and Amblyomma helvolum in Thailand and in south-eastern Asia.

  9. A cautionary note: survival of nymphs of two species of ticks (Acari: Ixodidae) among clothes laundered in an automatic washer.

    PubMed

    Carroll, J F

    2003-09-01

    Host-seeking ticks often remain on clothing of persons returning home from work or recreation in tick habitats, and can pose at least a temporary risk to people and pets in these homes. Laundering clothing has been one of the recommendations to reduce tick exposure. Host-seeking lone star tick, Amblyomma americanum (L.), and blacklegged tick, Ixodes scapularis Say, nymphs confined in polyester mesh packets, were included with laundry in cold, warm, and hot wash cycles of an automatic clothes washer. Ticks were also placed with washed clothing and subjected to drying in an automatic clothes dryer set on high heat and on air only (unheated). Most nymphs (> or = 90%) of both species survived the cold and warm washes, and 95% of A. americanum nymphs survived the hot wash. At the time of their removal from the washer, I. scapularis nymphs were clearly affected by the hot wash, but 65% were considered alive 20-24 h later. Large percentages of nymphs of both species survived hot washes in which two other detergents (a powder containing a nonchlorine bleach and a liquid) were used. All ticks were killed by the 1 h cycle at high heat in the clothes dryer, but with unheated air some nymphs of both species survived the 1 h cycle in the dryer. Given the laundering recommendations of clothing manufacturers and variation in the use automatic clothes washers, laundry washed in automatic washers should not be considered free of living ticks.

  10. First survey on hard ticks (Ixodidae) collected from humans in Romania: possible risks for tick-borne diseases.

    PubMed

    Briciu, V T; Titilincu, A; Tăţulescu, D F; Cârstina, D; Lefkaditis, M; Mihalca, A D

    2011-06-01

    The importance of studies on the diversity of ticks attacking humans resides mostly in the relatively highly-specific tick-pathogen associations. Human tick bites are commonly reported worldwide but removal of ticks from patients is rarely followed by specific identification of the ticks, leaving to some degree of hazard the preventive treatment of possible associated diseases. A total number of 308 ticks were collected between April and June 2010 from 275 human patients who voluntarily presented to a hospital from Cluj-Napoca, Romania. The mean intensity of infection was 1.12 ± 0.46. Four species of ticks were identified Ixodes ricinus, Dermacentor marginatus, Haemaphysalis concinna and H. punctata. Ixodes ricinus was the most abundant species feeding on humans in the study area. A brief review of possible associated pathogen is provided. PMID:21161719

  11. ABUNDANT OR RARE? A HYBRID APPROACH FOR DETERMINING SPECIES RELATIVE ABUNDANCE AT AN ECOREGOIONAL SCALE

    EPA Science Inventory

    Everyone knows what abundant and rare species are, but quantifying the concept proves elusive. As part of an EPA/USGS project to assess near-coastal species vulnerability to climate change affects, we designed a hybrid approach to determine species relative abundance at an ecoreg...

  12. ABUNDANT OR RARE? A HYBRID APPROACH FOR DETERMINING SPECIES RELATIVE ABUNDANCE AT AN ECOREGOIONAL SCALE - 2014

    EPA Science Inventory

    Everyone knows what abundant and rare species are, but quantifying the concept proves elusive. As part of an EPA/USGS project to assess near-coastal species vulnerability to climate change affects, we designed a hybrid approach to determine species relative abundance at an ecoreg...

  13. Climate change and species distribution: possible scenarios for thermophilic ticks in Romania.

    PubMed

    Domșa, Cristian; Sándor, Attila D; Mihalca, Andrei D

    2016-01-01

    Several zoonotic tick-borne diseases are emerging in Europe due to various factors, including changes of the cultural landscape, increasing human populations, variation of social habits and climate change. We have modelled the potential range changes for two thermophilic tick species (Hyalomma marginatum and Rhipicephalus annulatus) by use of MaxEnt® and 15 climatic predictors, taking into account the aptitude for future climatic change in Romania. Current models predict increased temperatures, both in the short term (up to 2050) and in the long term (up to 2070), together with possible changes also of the other climatic factors (e.g. precipitation), and may lead to higher zoonotic risks associated with an expansion of the range of the target species. Three different models were constructed (the present, 2050 and 2070) for four representative concentration pathways (RCPs) of greenhouse gas scenarios: RCP2.6, RCP4.5, RCP6, and RCP8.5. The most dramatic scenario (RCP8.5) produced the highest increase in the probable distribution range for both species. In concordance with similar continental-wide studies, both tick species displayed a shift of distribution towards previously cooler areas of Romania. In most scenarios, this would lead to wider ranges; from 9.7 to 43.1% for H. marginatum, and from 53.4 to 205.2% for R annulatus. Although the developed models demonstrate a good predictive power, the issue of species ecology should also be considered. PMID:27245802

  14. Ticks infesting wild and domestic animals and humans of Sri Lanka with new host records.

    PubMed

    Liyanaarachchi, D R; Rajakaruna, R S; Dikkumbura, A W; Rajapakse, R P V J

    2015-02-01

    An island-wide collection of tick species infesting humans, domesticated and wild animals and questing ticks in domestic and peridomestic environments was carried out during 2009-2011. A total of 30,461 ticks were collected from 30 different hosts and free living stages from the ground. The collection consisted of 22 tick species from 30 different hosts recording 12 tick species from humans, 19 from domesticated animals and 21 from wild animals, with a total of 97 new host records. The most common tick species on humans were Dermacentor auratus and Amblyomma testudinairum, while Haemaphysalis intermedia, Rhipicephalus microplus and Rhipicephalus sanguineus were common in domesticated and wild animals sharing 20 host species. Among the questing ticks, immature D. auratus was the most abundant. Humans and domesticated animals were mostly infested by the nymphal stages while adult ticks were found on wild animals. High number of new host records could be due to domestic animals picking tick species from wildlife and vise versa at the human/animal interface. Habitat destruction due to forest fragmentation has lead to wild animals roaming in urban and semi-urban neighbourhoods increasing the interactions of wild animals with domesticated animals. Wild animals play a significant role as a reservoir of many tick borne infections which can easily be spread to domesticated animals and then to humans via tick infestations. Data in this paper are useful for those interested in tick infesting wild and domestic animals and humans in describing the zoonotic potential of tick borne infections.

  15. Phylogeny of a relapsing fever Borrelia species transmitted by the hard tick Ixodes scapularis

    PubMed Central

    Barbour, Alan G.

    2014-01-01

    The discovery of Borrelia species that were related to the agents of relapsing fever but were transmitted by hard ticks rather than soft ticks challenged previous taxonomies based largely on microbe-host specificities and geographic considerations. One of these newly-identified organisms is the Borrelia miyamotoi sensu lato strain LB-2001 from North America and transmitted by Ixodes scapularis. This or related strains have been identified as the cause of human disease, but comparatively little is known about their biology or genetics. Using recently acquired chromosome sequence of LB-2001 together with database sequences and additional sequences determined here, I carried out comparisons of the several species of Borrelia, including those in the two major clades: the relapsing fever group of species and the Lyme disease group of species. Phylogenetic inference at the species level was based on four data sets: whole chromosomes of ~1 Mb each, and concatenated sequences of 19 ribosomal protein genes, 3 conserved nucleic acid enzymes (rpoC, recC, and dnaE), and 4 contiguous genes for nucleotide salvage on a large plasmid. Analyses using neighbor-joining, maximum likelihood, and Bayesian methods were largely concordant for each of the trees. They showed that LB-2001 and related hard tick-associated organisms, like B. lonestari, are deeply positioned within the RF group of species and that these organisms did not, as some earlier estimations had suggested, constitute a paraphyletic group. The analyses also provided further evidence that major changes in host ranges and life cycles, such as hard to soft ticks or vice versa, may not correlate well with overall sequence differences. The genetic differences between LB-2001 and B. miyamotoi sensu stricto justify provisional use of the “sensu lato” designation for LB-2001. PMID:24813576

  16. Factors Driving the Abundance of Ixodes ricinus Ticks and the Prevalence of Zoonotic I. ricinus-Borne Pathogens in Natural Foci

    PubMed Central

    Fernández-de-Mera, Isabel G.; Acevedo, Pelayo; Gortázar, Christian; de la Fuente, José

    2012-01-01

    Environmental factors may drive tick ecology and therefore tick-borne pathogen (TBP) epidemiology, which determines the risk to animals and humans of becoming infected by TBPs. For this reason, the aim of this study was to analyze the influence of environmental factors on the abundance of immature-stage Ixodes ricinus ticks and on the prevalence of two zoonotic I. ricinus-borne pathogens in natural foci of endemicity. I. ricinus abundance was measured at nine sites in the northern Iberian Peninsula by dragging the vegetation with a cotton flannelette, and ungulate abundance was measured by means of dung counts. In addition to ungulate abundance, data on variables related to spatial location, climate, and soil were gathered from the study sites. I. ricinus adults, nymphs, and larvae were collected from the vegetation, and a representative subsample of I. ricinus nymphs from each study site was analyzed by PCR for the detection of Borrelia burgdorferi sensu lato and Anaplasma phagocytophilum DNA. Mean prevalences of these pathogens were 4.0% ± 1.8% and 20.5% ± 3.7%, respectively. Statistical analyses confirmed the influence of spatial factors, climate, and ungulate abundance on I. ricinus larva abundance, while nymph abundance was related only to climate. Interestingly, cattle abundance rather than deer abundance was the main driver of B. burgdorferi sensu lato and A. phagocytophilum prevalence in I. ricinus nymphs in the study sites, where both domestic and wild ungulates coexist. The increasing abundance of cattle seems to increase the risk of other hosts becoming infected by A. phagocytophilum, while reducing the risk of being infected by B. burgdorferi sensu lato. Controlling ticks in cattle in areas where they coexist with wild ungulates would be more effective for TBP control than reducing ungulate abundance. PMID:22286986

  17. Ecological niche structure and rangewide abundance patterns of species.

    PubMed

    Martínez-Meyer, Enrique; Díaz-Porras, Daniel; Peterson, A Townsend; Yáñez-Arenas, Carlos

    2013-02-23

    Spatial abundance patterns across species' ranges have attracted intense attention in macroecology and biogeography. One key hypothesis has been that abundance declines with geographical distance from the range centre, but tests of this idea have shown that the effect may occur indeed only in a minority of cases. We explore an alternative hypothesis: that species' abundances decline with distance from the centroid of the species' habitable conditions in environmental space (the ecological niche). We demonstrate consistent negative abundance-ecological distance relationships across all 11 species analysed (turtles to wolves), and that relationships in environmental space are consistently stronger than relationships in geographical space. PMID:23134784

  18. Ticks infesting wildlife species in northeastern Brazil with new host and locality records.

    PubMed

    Dantas-Torres, Filipe; Siqueira, Daniel B; Rameh-De-Albuquerque, Luciana C; Da Silva E Souza, Denisson; Zanotti, Alexandre P; Ferreira, Débora R A; Martins, Thiago F; De Senna, Michelle B; Wagner, Paulo G C; Da Silva, Marcio A; Marvulo, Maria F V; Labruna, Marcelo B

    2010-11-01

    From September 2008 to March 2010, 397 ticks (315 larvae, 33 nymphs, 23 females, and 26 males) were collected from captive and free-living wildlife species in northeastern Brazil. Six tick species were identified, including Amblyomma auricularium (Conil) on Tamandua tetradactyla (L.), Amblyomma dubitatum Neumann on Hydrochaeris hydrochaeris (L.), Nectomys rattus (Pelzen) and T. tetradactyla, Amblyomma parvum Aragão on T. tetradactyla, Amblyomma rotundatum Koch on Boa constrictor L., Chelonoidis carbonaria (Spix), Kinosternon scorpioides (L.) and Rhinella jimi (Stevaux), Amblyomma oarium Koch on Bradypus variegatus Schinz, and Rhipicephalus sanguineus (Latreille) on Lycalopex vetulus (Lund). Nectomys rattus and T. tetradactyla are new hosts for A. dubitatum. This study extends the known distribution ofA. dubitatum in South America and provides evidence that its geographical range has been underestimated because of the lack of research. Four (A. dubitatum, A. parvum, A. rotundatum, and R. sanguineus) of six tick species identified in this study have previously been found on humans in South America, some of them being potentially involved in the transmission of pathogens of zoonotic concern.

  19. Prevalence and genetic diversity of piroplasm species in horses and ticks from Tunisia.

    PubMed

    Ros-García, Amaia; M'ghirbi, Youmna; Hurtado, Ana; Bouattour, Ali

    2013-07-01

    The genetic diversity and prevalence of Babesia and Theileria species in the equine population of Tunisia were studied using reverse line blot (RLB) hybridization on blood samples and unfed adult ticks collected from apparently healthy horses from three bioclimatic zones in Tunisia. Piroplasms were identified in 13 of 104 of the horse blood samples analyzed (12.5%) and five genotype groups were identified: Theileria equi group A (nine animals, 8.7%), group C (one animal, 1.0%) and group D (three animals, 2.9%), and Babesia caballi groups A and B (one animal each). All horses from the semi-arid zone were negative and prevalence in the humid and sub-humid zones were 12.9% and 20.0%, respectively. Three Ixodid tick species (Hyalomma marginatum, Hyalomma excavatum and Rhipicephalus bursa) were collected from examined horses and equine piroplasms were detected in 10.8% of them. T. equi groups A and D (9.2%), and B. caballi group B (1.6%) were identified in ticks. This work represents the first epidemiological report of equine piroplasmosis in Tunisia. Results showed a high level of diversity within the 18S rRNA gene of equine piroplasm species, and confirmed the presence in Tunisia of two T. equi genetic groups, C and D, only reported before in South Africa and Sudan.

  20. Geographical Range and Local Abundance of Tree Species in China

    PubMed Central

    Ren, Haibao; Condit, Richard; Chen, Bin; Mi, Xiangcheng; Cao, Min; Ye, Wanhui; Hao, Zhanqing; Ma, Keping

    2013-01-01

    Most studies on the geographical distribution of species have utilized a few well-known taxa in Europe and North America, with little research in China and its wide range of climate and forest types. We assembled large datasets to quantify the geographic ranges of tree species in China and to test several biogeographic hypotheses: 1) whether locally abundant species tend to be geographically widespread; 2) whether species are more abundant towards their range-centers; and 3) how abundances are correlated between sites. Local abundances of 651 species were derived from four tree plots of 20–25 ha where all individuals ≥1 cm in stem diameter were mapped and identified taxonomically. Range sizes of these species across China were then estimated from over 460,000 geo-referenced records; a Bayesian approach was used, allowing careful measures of error of each range estimate. The log-transformed range sizes had a bell-shaped distribution with a median of 703,000 km2, and >90% of 651 species had ranges >105 km2. There was no relationship between local abundance and range size, and no evidence for species being more abundant towards their range-centers. Finally, species’ abundances were positively correlated between sites. The widespread nature of most tree species in China suggests few are vulnerable to global extinction, and there is no indication of the double-peril that would result if rare species also had narrow ranges. PMID:24130772

  1. Laboratory evaluation of pathogenicity of entomogenous nematodes to African tick species.

    PubMed

    Kaaya, G P; Samish, M; Glazer, I

    2000-01-01

    Five strains of entomogenous nematodes, Steinernema carpocapsae strains DD, Mexican, SR, and Heterorhabditis bacteriophora strains 1S5 and HP88, were tested for their pathogenicity to various developmental stages of five African tick species namely; Rhipicephalus appendiculatus, R. evertsi, Amblyomma variegatum, A. gemma, and Boophilus decoloratus. In engorged female R. appendiculatus, all nematodes at a concentration of 1,000 infective juveniles (IJ)/dish, except S. carpocapsae Mexican strain, induced high mortalities (56-100%), whereas in engorged female R. evertsi, only S. carpocapsae DD and H. bacteriophora HP88 induced high mortalities (78% and 56%, respectively). In engorged B. decoloratus, S. carpocapsae DD, Mexican, SR and H. bacteriophora HP88 (100 IJ/dish) induced mortalities of 85%, 65%, 80%, and 100%, respectively. In all cases, except for S. carpocapsae Mexican strain, a higher concentration (5,000 IJ/dish) did not result in higher mortality than occurred with 1,000 IJ/dish. Unfed females and immature stages of ticks were found to be generally resistant to the nematodes. The feasibility of using entomogenous nematodes for biological control of African tick species are briefly discussed. PMID:11193637

  2. Model reduction for stochastic chemical systems with abundant species.

    PubMed

    Smith, Stephen; Cianci, Claudia; Grima, Ramon

    2015-12-01

    Biochemical processes typically involve many chemical species, some in abundance and some in low molecule numbers. We first identify the rate constant limits under which the concentrations of a given set of species will tend to infinity (the abundant species) while the concentrations of all other species remains constant (the non-abundant species). Subsequently, we prove that, in this limit, the fluctuations in the molecule numbers of non-abundant species are accurately described by a hybrid stochastic description consisting of a chemical master equation coupled to deterministic rate equations. This is a reduced description when compared to the conventional chemical master equation which describes the fluctuations in both abundant and non-abundant species. We show that the reduced master equation can be solved exactly for a number of biochemical networks involving gene expression and enzyme catalysis, whose conventional chemical master equation description is analytically impenetrable. We use the linear noise approximation to obtain approximate expressions for the difference between the variance of fluctuations in the non-abundant species as predicted by the hybrid approach and by the conventional chemical master equation. Furthermore, we show that surprisingly, irrespective of any separation in the mean molecule numbers of various species, the conventional and hybrid master equations exactly agree for a class of chemical systems.

  3. Model reduction for stochastic chemical systems with abundant species

    SciTech Connect

    Smith, Stephen; Cianci, Claudia; Grima, Ramon

    2015-12-07

    Biochemical processes typically involve many chemical species, some in abundance and some in low molecule numbers. We first identify the rate constant limits under which the concentrations of a given set of species will tend to infinity (the abundant species) while the concentrations of all other species remains constant (the non-abundant species). Subsequently, we prove that, in this limit, the fluctuations in the molecule numbers of non-abundant species are accurately described by a hybrid stochastic description consisting of a chemical master equation coupled to deterministic rate equations. This is a reduced description when compared to the conventional chemical master equation which describes the fluctuations in both abundant and non-abundant species. We show that the reduced master equation can be solved exactly for a number of biochemical networks involving gene expression and enzyme catalysis, whose conventional chemical master equation description is analytically impenetrable. We use the linear noise approximation to obtain approximate expressions for the difference between the variance of fluctuations in the non-abundant species as predicted by the hybrid approach and by the conventional chemical master equation. Furthermore, we show that surprisingly, irrespective of any separation in the mean molecule numbers of various species, the conventional and hybrid master equations exactly agree for a class of chemical systems.

  4. Model reduction for stochastic chemical systems with abundant species

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Smith, Stephen; Cianci, Claudia; Grima, Ramon

    2015-12-01

    Biochemical processes typically involve many chemical species, some in abundance and some in low molecule numbers. We first identify the rate constant limits under which the concentrations of a given set of species will tend to infinity (the abundant species) while the concentrations of all other species remains constant (the non-abundant species). Subsequently, we prove that, in this limit, the fluctuations in the molecule numbers of non-abundant species are accurately described by a hybrid stochastic description consisting of a chemical master equation coupled to deterministic rate equations. This is a reduced description when compared to the conventional chemical master equation which describes the fluctuations in both abundant and non-abundant species. We show that the reduced master equation can be solved exactly for a number of biochemical networks involving gene expression and enzyme catalysis, whose conventional chemical master equation description is analytically impenetrable. We use the linear noise approximation to obtain approximate expressions for the difference between the variance of fluctuations in the non-abundant species as predicted by the hybrid approach and by the conventional chemical master equation. Furthermore, we show that surprisingly, irrespective of any separation in the mean molecule numbers of various species, the conventional and hybrid master equations exactly agree for a class of chemical systems.

  5. Ecological niche structure and rangewide abundance patterns of species

    PubMed Central

    Martínez-Meyer, Enrique; Díaz-Porras, Daniel; Peterson, A. Townsend; Yáñez-Arenas, Carlos

    2013-01-01

    Spatial abundance patterns across species' ranges have attracted intense attention in macroecology and biogeography. One key hypothesis has been that abundance declines with geographical distance from the range centre, but tests of this idea have shown that the effect may occur indeed only in a minority of cases. We explore an alternative hypothesis: that species' abundances decline with distance from the centroid of the species' habitable conditions in environmental space (the ecological niche). We demonstrate consistent negative abundance–ecological distance relationships across all 11 species analysed (turtles to wolves), and that relationships in environmental space are consistently stronger than relationships in geographical space. PMID:23134784

  6. Why abundant tropical tree species are phylogenetically old

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Shaopeng; Chen, Anping; Fang, Jingyun; Pacala, Stephen W.

    2013-01-01

    Neutral models of species diversity predict patterns of abundance for communities in which all individuals are ecologically equivalent. These models were originally developed for Panamanian trees and successfully reproduce observed distributions of abundance. Neutral models also make macroevolutionary predictions that have rarely been evaluated or tested. Here we show that neutral models predict a humped or flat relationship between species age and population size. In contrast, ages and abundances of tree species in the Panamanian Canal watershed are found to be positively correlated, which falsifies the models. Speciation rates vary among phylogenetic lineages and are partially heritable from mother to daughter species. Variable speciation rates in an otherwise neutral model lead to a demographic advantage for species with low speciation rate. This demographic advantage results in a positive correlation between species age and abundance, as found in the Panamanian tropical forest community. PMID:24043767

  7. Why abundant tropical tree species are phylogenetically old.

    PubMed

    Wang, Shaopeng; Chen, Anping; Fang, Jingyun; Pacala, Stephen W

    2013-10-01

    Neutral models of species diversity predict patterns of abundance for communities in which all individuals are ecologically equivalent. These models were originally developed for Panamanian trees and successfully reproduce observed distributions of abundance. Neutral models also make macroevolutionary predictions that have rarely been evaluated or tested. Here we show that neutral models predict a humped or flat relationship between species age and population size. In contrast, ages and abundances of tree species in the Panamanian Canal watershed are found to be positively correlated, which falsifies the models. Speciation rates vary among phylogenetic lineages and are partially heritable from mother to daughter species. Variable speciation rates in an otherwise neutral model lead to a demographic advantage for species with low speciation rate. This demographic advantage results in a positive correlation between species age and abundance, as found in the Panamanian tropical forest community. PMID:24043767

  8. Ticks and spotted fever group rickettsiae of southeastern Virginia

    PubMed Central

    Sonenshine, Daniel E.; Hynes, Wayne L.; Gaff, Holly D.

    2013-01-01

    The incidence of tick-borne rickettsial disease in the southeastern United States has been rising steadily through the past decade, and the range expansions of tick species and tick-borne infectious agents, new and old, has resulted in an unprecedented mix of vectors and pathogens. The results of an ongoing 4-year surveillance project describe the relative abundance of questing tick populations in southeastern Virginia. Since 2009, more than 66,000 questing ticks of 7 species have been collected from vegetation in a variety of habitats, with Amblyomma americanum constituting over 95% of ticks collected. Other species represented included Ixodes scapularis, Dermacentor variabilis, Amblyomma maculatum, Ixodes affinis, Haemaphysalis leporispalustris, and Ixodes brunneus. We found that 26.9–54.9% of A. americanum ticks tested were positive for Rickettsia amblyommii, a non-pathogenic symbiont of this tick species. We also found no evidence of R. rickettsii in D. variabilis ticks, although they did show low infection rates of R. montanensis (1.5–2.0%). Rickettsia parkeri and Candidatus R. andeanae were found in 41.8–55.7% and 0–1.5% A. maculatum ticks, respectively. The rate of R. parkeri in A. maculatum ticks is among the highest in the literature and has increased in the 2 years since R. parkeri and A. maculatum were first reported in southeastern Virginia. We conclude that tick populations in southeastern Virginia have recently undergone dramatic changes in species and abundance and that these populations support a variety of rickettsial agents with the potential for increased risk to human health. PMID:24201057

  9. Efficacy of a novel oral formulation of sarolaner (Simparica™) against four common tick species infesting dogs in Europe.

    PubMed

    Geurden, Thomas; Becskei, Csilla; Grace, Sarah; Strube, Christina; Doherty, Padraig; Liebenberg, Julian; Mahabir, Sean P; Slootmans, Nathalie; Lloyd, Anne; Six, Robert H

    2016-05-30

    The efficacy of single oral treatment of sarolaner (Simparica™, Zoetis), a novel isoxazoline compound, was evaluated against four tick species known to commonly infest dogs in Europe. Eight laboratory studies were conducted using adult purpose-bred Beagle dogs. In each study, 16 animals were randomly allocated to one of two treatment groups based on pre-treatment host-suitability tick counts. Dogs were infested with 50 unfed adult Dermacentor reticulatus (two studies), Ixodes hexagonus (three studies), Ixodes ricinus (two studies) or Rhipicephalus sanguineus (one study) ticks on Days -2, 5, 12, 19, 26 and 33. On Day 0, dogs were treated orally with placebo or sarolaner tablets providing the minimum dose of 2.0mg/kg bodyweight and tick counts were conducted 48h after treatment and after each subsequent weekly re-infestation. There were no treatment-related adverse reactions in any of the studies. Dogs in the placebo-treated group maintained tick infestations throughout the studies. Geometric mean live tick counts were significantly (P≤0.0001) lower in the sarolaner-treated group compared to the tick counts in the placebo group at all time-points. A single oral administration of sarolaner resulted in 100% efficacy against existing infestations of all tick species except R. sanguineus, for which the efficacy was 99.7%, within 48h. Efficacy against weekly re-infestations was ≥97.5% for all tick species for 35 days. Thus, a single dose of sarolaner administered orally at the minimum dosage of 2 mg/kg, resulted in ≥99.7% efficacy within 48h against existing tick infestations, and in ≥97.5% efficacy against weekly re-infestations, for at least 35 days after treatment. These studies confirmed that administration of the minimum dose of sarolaner will provide treatment of existing infestations and give at least one month of control against re-infestation by the common tick species affecting dogs in Europe. PMID:27068640

  10. Multiple peaks of species abundance distributions induced by sparse interactions.

    PubMed

    Obuchi, Tomoyuki; Kabashima, Yoshiyuki; Tokita, Kei

    2016-08-01

    We investigate the replicator dynamics with "sparse" symmetric interactions which represent specialist-specialist interactions in ecological communities. By considering a large self-interaction u, we conduct a perturbative expansion which manifests that the nature of the interactions has a direct impact on the species abundance distribution. The central results are all species coexistence in a realistic range of the model parameters and that a certain discrete nature of the interactions induces multiple peaks in the species abundance distribution, providing the possibility of theoretically explaining multiple peaks observed in various field studies. To get more quantitative information, we also construct a non-perturbative theory which becomes exact on tree-like networks if all the species coexist, providing exact critical values of u below which extinct species emerge. Numerical simulations in various different situations are conducted and they clarify the robustness of the presented mechanism of all species coexistence and multiple peaks in the species abundance distributions. PMID:27627322

  11. Multiple peaks of species abundance distributions induced by sparse interactions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Obuchi, Tomoyuki; Kabashima, Yoshiyuki; Tokita, Kei

    2016-08-01

    We investigate the replicator dynamics with "sparse" symmetric interactions which represent specialist-specialist interactions in ecological communities. By considering a large self-interaction u , we conduct a perturbative expansion which manifests that the nature of the interactions has a direct impact on the species abundance distribution. The central results are all species coexistence in a realistic range of the model parameters and that a certain discrete nature of the interactions induces multiple peaks in the species abundance distribution, providing the possibility of theoretically explaining multiple peaks observed in various field studies. To get more quantitative information, we also construct a non-perturbative theory which becomes exact on tree-like networks if all the species coexist, providing exact critical values of u below which extinct species emerge. Numerical simulations in various different situations are conducted and they clarify the robustness of the presented mechanism of all species coexistence and multiple peaks in the species abundance distributions.

  12. Percolation Theory for the Distribution and Abundance of Species

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    He, Fangliang; Hubbell, Stephen P.

    2003-11-01

    We develop and test new models that unify the mathematical relationships among the abundance of a species, the spatial dispersion of the species, the number of patches occupied by the species, the edge length of the occupied patches, and the scale on which the distribution of species is mapped. The models predict that species distributions will exhibit percolation critical thresholds, i.e., critical population abundances at which the fragmented patches (as measured by the number of patches and edge length) start to coalesce to form large patches.

  13. Tick infestation on wild snakes in northern part of western Ghats of India.

    PubMed

    Pandit, Pranav; Bandivdekar, Ruta; Geevarghese, G; Pande, Satish; Mandke, Omkar

    2011-05-01

    In total, 167 individuals of 30 species of snakes belonging to 22 genera and five families were examined for tick infestation from November 2008 to March 2010. Only two species of snakes, Ptyas mucosa (L., 1758) (Indian rat snake) and Naja naja (L., 1758) (spectacled cobra), were found infested by ticks. All ticks collected were identified to be Amblyomma gervaisi [previously Aponomma gervaisi (Lucas, 1847) 1. The average prevalence of these ticks on Indian rat snakes (n=48) was 29.16%, with abundance of 7.02 ticks per individual; on spectacled cobras (n=20), average prevalence was 30.00%, with abundance of 6.9 ticks per individual. The nymphs and males were predominant. All the ticks were found on the dorsal aspect of the body of the snake, and no ticks were recorded on the head, tail, or ventral body. The rate of tick infestation was highest in scrubland and was lowest in evergreen forests. Female Indian rat snakes showed higher tick infestation rates than male Indian rat snakes. Using Mann-Whitney U test, we found that longer snakes of both species had significantly higher rate of tick infestation in both the species of snakes.

  14. Tick paralysis in Australia caused by Ixodes holocyclus Neumann

    PubMed Central

    Hall-Mendelin, S; Craig, S B; Hall, R A; O’Donoghue, P; Atwell, R B; Tulsiani, S M; Graham, G C

    2011-01-01

    Ticks are obligate haematophagous ectoparasites of various animals, including humans, and are abundant in temperate and tropical zones around the world. They are the most important vectors for the pathogens causing disease in livestock and second only to mosquitoes as vectors of pathogens causing human disease. Ticks are formidable arachnids, capable of not only transmitting the pathogens involved in some infectious diseases but also of inducing allergies and causing toxicoses and paralysis, with possible fatal outcomes for the host. This review focuses on tick paralysis, the role of the Australian paralysis tick Ixodes holocyclus, and the role of toxin molecules from this species in causing paralysis in the host. PMID:21396246

  15. Infection and replication of Bartonella species within a tick cell line

    PubMed Central

    Billeter, Sarah A.; Diniz, Pedro Paulo V. P.; Battisti, James M.; Munderloh, Ulrike G.; Breitschwerdt, Edward B.

    2015-01-01

    Bartonella species are fastidious, gram negative bacteria, some of which are transmitted by arthropod vectors, including fleas, sandflies, and lice. There is very little information regarding the interaction and/or transmission capabilities of Bartonella species by ticks. In the present study, we demonstrate successful infection of the Amblyomma americanum cell line, AAE12, by seven Bartonella isolates and three Candidatus Bartonella species by electron or light microscopy. With the exception of Bartonella bovis, infection with all other examined Bartonella species induced cytopathic effects characterized by heavy cellular vacuolization and eventually cell lysis. Furthermore, using quantitative real time PCR (qPCR), we demonstrated significant amplification of two B. henselae genotype I isolates in the A. americanum cell line over a 5 days period. Ultimately, tick-cell derived Bartonella antigens may prove useful for the development of more sensitive diagnostic reagents and may assist in the development of an effective vaccine to prevent the further spread of disease caused by these organisms. PMID:19242658

  16. Bacterial Profiling Reveals Novel “Ca. Neoehrlichia”, Ehrlichia, and Anaplasma Species in Australian Human-Biting Ticks

    PubMed Central

    Gofton, Alexander W.; Doggett, Stephen; Ratchford, Andrew; Oskam, Charlotte L.; Paparini, Andrea; Ryan, Una; Irwin, Peter

    2015-01-01

    In Australia, a conclusive aetiology of Lyme disease-like illness in human patients remains elusive, despite growing numbers of people presenting with symptoms attributed to tick bites. In the present study, we surveyed the microbial communities harboured by human-biting ticks from across Australia to identify bacteria that may contribute to this syndrome. Universal PCR primers were used to amplify the V1-2 hyper-variable region of bacterial 16S rRNA genes in DNA samples from individual Ixodes holocyclus (n = 279), Amblyomma triguttatum (n = 167), Haemaphysalis bancrofti (n = 7), and H. longicornis (n = 7) ticks. The 16S amplicons were sequenced on the Illumina MiSeq platform and analysed in USEARCH, QIIME, and BLAST to assign genus and species-level taxonomies. Nested PCR and Sanger sequencing were used to confirm the NGS data and further analyse novel findings. All 460 ticks were negative for Borrelia spp. by both NGS and nested PCR analysis. Two novel “Candidatus Neoehrlichia” spp. were identified in 12.9% of I. holocyclus ticks. A novel Anaplasma sp. was identified in 1.8% of A. triguttatum ticks, and a novel Ehrlichia sp. was identified in both A. triguttatum (1.2%) ticks and a single I. holocyclus (0.6%) tick. Further phylogenetic analysis of novel “Ca. Neoehrlichia”, Anaplasma and Ehrlichia based on 1,265 bp 16S rRNA gene sequences suggests that these are new species. Determining whether these newly discovered organisms cause disease in humans and animals, like closely related bacteria do abroad, is of public health importance and requires further investigation. PMID:26709826

  17. A novel Rickettsia species detected in Vole Ticks (Ixodes angustus) from Western Canada.

    PubMed

    Anstead, Clare A; Chilton, Neil B

    2013-12-01

    The genomic DNA of ixodid ticks from western Canada was tested by PCR for the presence of Rickettsia. No rickettsiae were detected in Ixodes sculptus, whereas 18% of the I. angustus and 42% of the Dermacentor andersoni organisms examined were PCR positive for Rickettsia. The rickettsiae from each tick species were characterized genetically using multiple genes. Rickettsiae within the D. andersoni organisms had sequences at four genes that matched those of R. peacockii. In contrast, the Rickettsia present within the larvae, nymphs, and adults of I. angustus had novel DNA sequences at four of the genes characterized compared to the sequences available from GenBank for all recognized species of Rickettsia and all other putative species within the genus. Phylogenetic analyses of the sequence data revealed that the rickettsiae in I. angustus do not belong to the spotted fever, transitional, or typhus groups of rickettsiae but are most closely related to "Candidatus Rickettsia kingi" and belong to a clade that also includes R. canadensis, "Candidatus Rickettsia tarasevichiae," and "Candidatus Rickettsia monteiroi."

  18. Ticks collected from migratory birds, including a new record of Haemaphysalis formosensis, on Jeju Island, Korea.

    PubMed

    Choi, Chang-Yong; Kang, Chang-Wan; Kim, Eun-Mi; Lee, Sang; Moon, Kyoung-Ha; Oh, Mi-Rae; Yamauchi, Takeo; Yun, Young-Min

    2014-04-01

    Migratory birds may disperse parasites across ecological barriers, and recent climate change may alter the pattern of ectoparasite dispersal via changed patterns of bird migration. In order to document the parasitization of migratory birds by Ixodidae ticks on Jeju Island in Korea, we examined 934 migratory birds comprising 75 species for ticks from 2010 to 2012. In total, 313 ticks were collected from 74 migratory birds across 17 avian species and identified based on morphological keys. These ticks represented six species: Haemaphysalis flava, H. formosensis, H. longicornis, H. concinna, Ixodes turdus and I. nipponensis. Of particular note was the presence of H. formosensis, a species not previously reported to have been found in Korea, and H. concinna, which had not been previously reported on Jeju Island. The dominant tick species found were H. flava (226 ticks, 72.2 %) and I. turdus (54 ticks, 17.3 %), and ground-dwelling thrushes such as Pale thrushes (Turdus pallidus; 39 birds, 52.7 %) were the most important hosts. Although H. longicornis is the most abundant and prevalent terrestrial tick on Jeju Island, the species accounted for only 3.8 % of the total ticks collected in this study, suggesting that ticks on migratory birds may differ from the local tick fauna and that exotic ticks may be introduced via migratory birds. Therefore, long-term programs for tick and tick-borne disease surveillance are recommended to understand the role of migratory animals in the introduction of exotic species and associated pathogens and in life cycles of ticks at different stages in this region. PMID:24141529

  19. Ticks collected from migratory birds, including a new record of Haemaphysalis formosensis, on Jeju Island, Korea.

    PubMed

    Choi, Chang-Yong; Kang, Chang-Wan; Kim, Eun-Mi; Lee, Sang; Moon, Kyoung-Ha; Oh, Mi-Rae; Yamauchi, Takeo; Yun, Young-Min

    2014-04-01

    Migratory birds may disperse parasites across ecological barriers, and recent climate change may alter the pattern of ectoparasite dispersal via changed patterns of bird migration. In order to document the parasitization of migratory birds by Ixodidae ticks on Jeju Island in Korea, we examined 934 migratory birds comprising 75 species for ticks from 2010 to 2012. In total, 313 ticks were collected from 74 migratory birds across 17 avian species and identified based on morphological keys. These ticks represented six species: Haemaphysalis flava, H. formosensis, H. longicornis, H. concinna, Ixodes turdus and I. nipponensis. Of particular note was the presence of H. formosensis, a species not previously reported to have been found in Korea, and H. concinna, which had not been previously reported on Jeju Island. The dominant tick species found were H. flava (226 ticks, 72.2 %) and I. turdus (54 ticks, 17.3 %), and ground-dwelling thrushes such as Pale thrushes (Turdus pallidus; 39 birds, 52.7 %) were the most important hosts. Although H. longicornis is the most abundant and prevalent terrestrial tick on Jeju Island, the species accounted for only 3.8 % of the total ticks collected in this study, suggesting that ticks on migratory birds may differ from the local tick fauna and that exotic ticks may be introduced via migratory birds. Therefore, long-term programs for tick and tick-borne disease surveillance are recommended to understand the role of migratory animals in the introduction of exotic species and associated pathogens and in life cycles of ticks at different stages in this region.

  20. Diversity is maintained by seasonal variation in species abundance

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background Some of the most marked temporal fluctuations in species abundances are linked to seasons. In theory, multispecies assemblages can persist if species use shared resources at different times, thereby minimizing interspecific competition. However, there is scant empirical evidence supporting these predictions and, to the best of our knowledge, seasonal variation has never been explored in the context of fluctuation-mediated coexistence. Results Using an exceptionally well-documented estuarine fish assemblage, sampled monthly for over 30 years, we show that temporal shifts in species abundances underpin species coexistence. Species fall into distinct seasonal groups, within which spatial resource use is more heterogeneous than would be expected by chance at those times when competition for food is most intense. We also detect seasonal variation in the richness and evenness of the community, again linked to shifts in resource availability. Conclusions These results reveal that spatiotemporal shifts in community composition minimize competitive interactions and help stabilize total abundance. PMID:24007204

  1. Survey of Ixodes pacificus Ticks in California Reveals a Diversity of Microorganisms and a Novel and Widespread Anaplasmataceae Species

    PubMed Central

    Eshoo, Mark W.; Carolan, Heather E.; Massire, Christian; Chou, Danny M.; Crowder, Chris D.; Rounds, Megan A.; Phillipson, Curtis A.; Schutzer, Steven E.; Ecker, David J.

    2015-01-01

    Ixodes pacificus ticks can harbor a wide range of human and animal pathogens. To survey the prevalence of tick-borne known and putative pathogens, we tested 982 individual adult and nymphal I. pacificus ticks collected throughout California between 2007 and 2009 using a broad-range PCR and electrospray ionization mass spectrometry (PCR/ESI-MS) assay designed to detect a wide range of tick-borne microorganisms. Overall, 1.4% of the ticks were found to be infected with Borrelia burgdorferi, 2.0% were infected with Borrelia miyamotoi and 0.3% were infected with Anaplasma phagocytophilum. In addition, 3.0% were infected with Babesia odocoilei. About 1.2% of the ticks were co-infected with more than one pathogen or putative pathogen. In addition, we identified a novel Anaplasmataceae species that we characterized by sequencing of its 16S rRNA, groEL, gltA, and rpoB genes. Sequence analysis indicated that this organism is phylogenetically distinct from known Anaplasma species with its closest genetic near neighbors coming from Asia. The prevalence of this novel Anaplasmataceae species was as high as 21% at one site, and it was detected in 4.9% of ticks tested statewide. Based upon this genetic characterization we propose that this organism be called ‘Candidatus Cryptoplasma californiense’. Knowledge of this novel microbe will provide awareness for the community about the breadth of the I. pacificus microbiome, the concept that this bacterium could be more widely spread; and an opportunity to explore whether this bacterium also contributes to human or animal disease burden. PMID:26375033

  2. Modelling occurrence and abundance of species when detection is imperfect

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Royle, J. Andrew; Nichols, J.D.; Kery, M.

    2005-01-01

    Relationships between species abundance and occupancy are of considerable interest in metapopulation biology and in macroecology. Such relationships may be described concisely using probability models that characterize variation in abundance of a species. However, estimation of the parameters of these models in most ecological problems is impaired by imperfect detection. When organisms are detected imperfectly, observed counts are biased estimates of true abundance, and this induces bias in stated occupancy or occurrence probability. In this paper we consider a class of models that enable estimation of abundance/occupancy relationships from counts of organisms that result from surveys in which detection is imperfect. Under such models, parameter estimation and inference are based on conventional likelihood methods. We provide an application of these models to geographically extensive breeding bird survey data in which alternative models of abundance are considered that include factors that influence variation in abundance and detectability. Using these models, we produce estimates of abundance and occupancy maps that honor important sources of spatial variation in avian abundance and provide clearly interpretable characterizations of abundance and occupancy adjusted for imperfect detection.

  3. Capybaras and ticks in the urban areas of Uberlândia, Minas Gerais, Brazil: ecological aspects for the epidemiology of tick-borne diseases.

    PubMed

    Queirogas, V L; Del Claro, K; Nascimento, A R T; Szabó, M P J

    2012-05-01

    In Brazil capybara, the biggest existing rodent species, and associated tick species, Amblyomma cajennense and Amblyomma dubitatum, are undergoing an unplanned host and parasite population expansion in both urban and rural areas. However, scientific information about such issue, particularly in urban areas, is scanty. Such rodent and ticks are associated in some municipalities, particularly in southeastern Brazil, with the transmission of the highly lethal Rickettsia rickettsia caused spotted-fever. In this study ecological aspects related to the establishment and expansion of capybaras and ticks in urban areas of Uberlândia, Minas Gerais State, Brazil were evaluated. For this purpose, capybara and tick abundance in four urban areas and an ecological reserve was determined. Abundance of capybaras varied between areas and over the sampling period and these differences were related to human activities. A positive correlation was found between capybara and tick abundance, however, the tick species had an uneven distribution within the municipality and environmental factors rather than host availability were blamed for such. On the whole these observations show that capybara populations in urban areas are associated to high environmental infestation of ticks and the increased risk of bites and of pathogen transmission to humans. At the same time the uneven distribution of tick species might implicate in an unequal risk of tick-borne diseases within the same urban area.

  4. Extensive diversity of Rickettsiales bacteria in two species of ticks from China and the evolution of the Rickettsiales

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background Bacteria of the order Rickettsiales (Alphaproteobacteria) are obligate intracellular parasites that infect species from virtually every major eukaryotic lineage. Several rickettsial genera harbor species that are significant emerging and re-emerging pathogens of humans. As species of Rickettsiales are associated with an extremely diverse host range, a better understanding of the historical associations between these bacteria and their hosts will provide important information on their evolutionary trajectories and, particularly, their potential emergence as pathogens. Results Nine species of Rickettsiales (two in the genus Rickettsia, three in the genus Anaplasma, and four in the genus Ehrlichia) were identified in two species of hard ticks (Dermacentor nuttalli and Hyalomma asiaticum) from two geographic regions in Xinjiang through genetic analyses of 16S rRNA, gltA, and groEL gene sequences. Notably, two lineages of Ehrlichia and one lineage of Anaplasma were distinct from any known Rickettsiales, suggesting the presence of potentially novel species in ticks in Xinjiang. Our phylogenetic analyses revealed some topological differences between the phylogenies of the bacteria and their vectors, which led us to marginally reject a model of exclusive bacteria-vector co-divergence. Conclusions Ticks are an important natural reservoir of many diverse species of Rickettsiales. In this work, we identified a single tick species that harbors multiple species of Rickettsiales, and uncovered extensive genetic diversity of these bacteria in two tick species from Xinjiang. Both bacteria-vector co-divergence and cross-species transmission appear to have played important roles in Rickettsiales evolution. PMID:25073875

  5. How well can we predict forage species occurrence and abundance?

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    As part of a larger effort focused on forage species production and management, we have been developing a statistical modeling approach to predict the probability of species occurrence and the abundance for Orchard Grass over the Northeast region of the United States using two selected statistical m...

  6. Questing ixodid ticks on the vegetation of sable antelope and multi-herbivore enclosures in Thabazimbi.

    PubMed

    Uys, André C; Horak, Ivan G; Harrison, Alan

    2015-01-01

    This survey of ixodid ticks was the first to compare the species composition and population dynamics of free-living ticks in intensive, sable antelope breeding enclosures, now commonplace in commercial wildlife ranching in South Africa, with those of multi-herbivore enclosures. The species composition, abundance and seasonal abundance of questing ixodid ticks on the vegetation in intensive breeding enclosures for sable antelope (Hippotragus niger), on which strategic tick control is practised, were compared with those of ticks in a multi-species herbivore enclosure surrounding the breeding enclosures in which no tick control is practised. A total of eight ixodid tick species were collected by drag-sampling the woodland and grassland habitats in each enclosure type monthly from July 2011 to July 2013. Rhipicephalus decoloratus, a potential vector of fatal tick-borne disease in sable antelopes, was the most abundant, accounting for 65.4% of the total number of ticks collected in the sable enclosures, whilst representing only 25.4% of number of ticks collected in the multi-species herbivore enclosure. Rhipicephalus decoloratus and R. evertsi evertsi were more abundant than R. appendiculatus (both p < 0.05) and Amblyomma hebraeum (p < 0.001 and p < 0.01, respectively). Rhipicephalus decoloratus larvae were collected throughout the year, with peak collections in November 2012 and October to December 2013 in the sable enclosures; and in April/May 2012 and February/April 2013 in the multi-species herbivore enclosure. More R. decoloratus were recovered in the second year than in the first year in the grassland habitat of the sable enclosures (V = 7.0, p < 0.05) possibly as a result of acaricide resistance. The apparent temporal over-abundance of R. decoloratus in sable antelope breeding enclosures, in the face of strategic tick control, is of concern and requires further investigation. PMID:26244584

  7. Questing ixodid ticks on the vegetation of sable antelope and multi-herbivore enclosures in Thabazimbi.

    PubMed

    Uys, André C; Horak, Ivan G; Harrison, Alan

    2015-07-14

    This survey of ixodid ticks was the first to compare the species composition and population dynamics of free-living ticks in intensive, sable antelope breeding enclosures, now commonplace in commercial wildlife ranching in South Africa, with those of multi-herbivore enclosures. The species composition, abundance and seasonal abundance of questing ixodid ticks on the vegetation in intensive breeding enclosures for sable antelope (Hippotragus niger), on which strategic tick control is practised, were compared with those of ticks in a multi-species herbivore enclosure surrounding the breeding enclosures in which no tick control is practised. A total of eight ixodid tick species were collected by drag-sampling the woodland and grassland habitats in each enclosure type monthly from July 2011 to July 2013. Rhipicephalus decoloratus, a potential vector of fatal tick-borne disease in sable antelopes, was the most abundant, accounting for 65.4% of the total number of ticks collected in the sable enclosures, whilst representing only 25.4% of number of ticks collected in the multi-species herbivore enclosure. Rhipicephalus decoloratus and R. evertsi evertsi were more abundant than R. appendiculatus (both p < 0.05) and Amblyomma hebraeum (p < 0.001 and p < 0.01, respectively). Rhipicephalus decoloratus larvae were collected throughout the year, with peak collections in November 2012 and October to December 2013 in the sable enclosures; and in April/May 2012 and February/April 2013 in the multi-species herbivore enclosure. More R. decoloratus were recovered in the second year than in the first year in the grassland habitat of the sable enclosures (V = 7.0, p < 0.05) possibly as a result of acaricide resistance. The apparent temporal over-abundance of R. decoloratus in sable antelope breeding enclosures, in the face of strategic tick control, is of concern and requires further investigation.

  8. Tick-borne pathogens, transmission rates and climate change.

    PubMed

    Estrada-Pena, Agustin

    2009-01-01

    Ticks are parasites that expend most of their life cycles off the host. Most important parts of the tick life cycle are directly dependent upon climate. There exist some concerns about the effects of the forecasted climate change on the geographical distribution of ticks. As tick life cycle dynamics would also be affected, the transmission of tick-borne pathogens could also be transformed by climate trends. Tick cycles are the result of complex interactions between climate, hosts populations, landscape characteristics, and the fine modulation of the populations of every partner involved, and not a simple, straightforward correlation between abundance and climate. The understanding of the climate niche used by different tick species may help in the search of clues towards a clarification of the expected effects of climate changes on the reported tick range shift. Populations of ticks occupying different portions of a wide geographical range may use different "portions" of the climate envelope, therefore resulting in misinterpretations from modeling results. Some advances can be foreseen in the complex task of modeling tick-host-pathogen interactions.

  9. The Phenology of Ticks and the Effects of Long-Term Prescribed Burning on Tick Population Dynamics in Southwestern Georgia and Northwestern Florida

    PubMed Central

    Gleim, Elizabeth R.; Conner, L. Mike; Berghaus, Roy D.; Levin, Michael L.; Zemtsova, Galina E.; Yabsley, Michael J.

    2014-01-01

    Some tick populations have increased dramatically in the past several decades leading to an increase in the incidence and emergence of tick-borne diseases. Management strategies that can effectively reduce tick populations while better understanding regional tick phenology is needed. One promising management strategy is prescribed burning. However, the efficacy of prescribed burning as a mechanism for tick control is unclear because past studies have provided conflicting data, likely due to a failure of some studies to simulate operational management scenarios and/or account for other predictors of tick abundance. Therefore, our study was conducted to increase knowledge of tick population dynamics relative to long-term prescribed fire management. Furthermore, we targeted a region, southwestern Georgia and northwestern Florida (USA), in which little is known regarding tick dynamics so that basic phenology could be determined. Twenty-one plots with varying burn regimes (burned surrounded by burned [BB], burned surrounded by unburned [BUB], unburned surrounded by burned [UBB], and unburned surrounded by unburned [UBUB]) were sampled monthly for two years while simultaneously collecting data on variables that can affect tick abundance (e.g., host abundance, vegetation structure, and micro- and macro-climatic conditions). In total, 47,185 ticks were collected, of which, 99% were Amblyomma americanum, 0.7% were Ixodes scapularis, and fewer numbers of Amblyomma maculatum, Ixodes brunneus, and Dermacentor variabilis. Monthly seasonality trends were similar between 2010 and 2011. Long-term prescribed burning consistently and significantly reduced tick counts (overall and specifically for A. americanum and I. scapularis) regardless of the burn regimes and variables evaluated. Tick species composition varied according to burn regime with A. americanum dominating at UBUB, A. maculatum at BB, I. scapularis at UBB, and a more even composition at BUB. These data indicate that

  10. Estimating abundance in the presence of species uncertainty

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Chambert, Thierry A; Hossack, Blake R.; Fishback, LeeAnn; Davenport, Jon M.

    2016-01-01

    1.N-mixture models have become a popular method for estimating abundance of free-ranging animals that are not marked or identified individually. These models have been used on count data for single species that can be identified with certainty. However, co-occurring species often look similar during one or more life stages, making it difficult to assign species for all recorded captures. This uncertainty creates problems for estimating species-specific abundance and it can often limit life stages to which we can make inference. 2.We present a new extension of N-mixture models that accounts for species uncertainty. In addition to estimating site-specific abundances and detection probabilities, this model allows estimating probability of correct assignment of species identity. We implement this hierarchical model in a Bayesian framework and provide all code for running the model in BUGS-language programs. 3.We present an application of the model on count data from two sympatric freshwater fishes, the brook stickleback (Culaea inconstans) and the ninespine stickleback (Pungitius pungitius), ad illustrate implementation of covariate effects (habitat characteristics). In addition, we used a simulation study to validate the model and illustrate potential sample size issues. We also compared, for both real and simulated data, estimates provided by our model to those obtained by a simple N-mixture model when captures of unknown species identification were discarded. In the latter case, abundance estimates appeared highly biased and very imprecise, while our new model provided unbiased estimates with higher precision. 4.This extension of the N-mixture model should be useful for a wide variety of studies and taxa, as species uncertainty is a common issue. It should notably help improve investigation of abundance and vital rate characteristics of organisms’ early life stages, which are sometimes more difficult to identify than adults.

  11. [Abundance of larvae and nymphs of the taiga tick Ixodes persuicatus (Acari: Ixodidae) on small mammals in the cut-over lands of the middle taiga subzone of Karelia].

    PubMed

    Bugmyrin, S V; Bespiatova, L A; Anikanova, V S; Ieshko, E P

    2009-01-01

    Data of long-term investigations (1998-2004) on the abundance of the taiga tick larvae and nymphs in the cut-over lands of different age in the middle taiga subzone of Karelia (62 degrees 04'S; 33 degrees 55'W) are presented. The investigation was carried out on three model cut-over lands of different age: 1) "young" cut-over land; age of cut-over in the beginning of investigation is 7 years; Betula-Deschampsia cespitosa-Agrostis tenuis; 2) "middle" cut-over land; age of cut-over is 12 years; Salix-Deschampsia cespitosa-Agrostis tenuis; 3) "old" cut-over land; age of cut-over 25 years; Alnus incana-Rubus idaeus-grass. The number of ticks was estimated by using common parasitological indices: prevalence, abundance, and index of feeding intensity (the tick abundance multiply by the number of small mammals per hundred traps-nights). In the beginning of investigation the "young" cut-over land was a typical meadow association. The lowest tick abundance was recorded here. That was a result of unfavorable abiotic conditions and low number of small mammals in the beginning of summer. "Middle" cut-over land is characterized by the highest number of the tick larvae, which is the evidence for high number of the hosts of tick imago. "Old" cut-over land has the optimum conditions for development of taiga ticks. High abundance of the ticks (larvae and nymphs) was recorded during the whole period of investigations. The number of preimaginal ticks is shown to be much higher in cut-over lands as compared with that in mixed and coniferous forests, due to the higher number of small mammals.

  12. Rapid divergence of microsatellite abundance among species of Drosophila.

    PubMed

    Ross, Charles L; Dyer, Kelly A; Erez, Tamar; Miller, Susan J; Jaenike, John; Markow, Therese A

    2003-07-01

    Among major taxonomic groups, microsatellites exhibit considerable variation in composition and allele length, but they also show considerable conservation within many major groups. This variation may be explained by slow microsatellite evolution so that all species within a group have similar patterns of variation, or by taxon-specific mutational or selective constraints. Unfortunately, comparing microsatellites across species and studies can be problematic because of biases that may exist among different isolation and analysis protocols. We present microsatellite data from five Drosophila species in the Drosophila subgenus: D. arizonae, D. mojavensis, and D. pachea (three cactophilic species), and D. neotestacea and D. recens (two mycophagous species), all isolated at the same time using identical protocols. For each species, we compared the relative abundance of motifs, the distribution of repeat size, and the average number of repeats. Dimers were the most abundant microsatellites for each species. However, we found considerable variation in the relative abundance of motif size classes among species, even between sister taxa. Frequency differences among motifs within size classes for the three cactophilic species, but not the two mycophagous species, are consistent with other studied Drosophila. Frequency distributions of repeat number, as well as mean size, show significant differences among motif size classes but not across species. Sizes of microsatellites in these five species are consistent with D. virilis, another species in the subgenus Drosophila, but they have consistently higher means than in D. melanogaster, in the subgenus Sophophora. These results confirm that many aspects of microsatellite variation evolve quickly but also are subject to taxon-specific constraints. In addition, the nature of microsatellite evolution is dependent on temporal and taxonomic scales, and some variation is conserved across broad taxonomic levels despite relatively high

  13. Vector biodiversity did not associate with tick-borne pathogen prevalence in small mammal communities in northern and central California.

    PubMed

    Foley, Janet; Piovia-Scott, Jonah

    2014-04-01

    Vector and host abundance affect infection transmission rates, prevalence, and persistence in communities. Biological diversity in hosts and vectors may provide "rescue" hosts which buffer against pathogen extinction and "dilution" hosts which reduce the force of infection in communities. Anaplasma phagocytophilum is a tick-transmitted zoonotic pathogen that circulates in small mammal and tick communities characterized by varying levels of biological diversity. We examined the prevalence of A. phagocytophilum in Ixodes spp. ticks in 11 communities in northern and central California. A total of 1020 ticks of 8 species was evaluated. Five percent of ticks (5 species) were PCR-positive, with the highest prevalence (6-7%) in I. pacificus and I. ochotonae. In most species, adults had a higher prevalence than nymphs or larvae. PCR prevalence varied between 0% and 40% across sites; the infection probability in ticks increased with infestation load and prevalence in small mammals, but not tick species richness, diversity, evenness, or small mammal species richness. No particular tick species was likely to "rescue" infection in the community; rather the risk of A. phagocytophilum infection is related to exposure to particular tick species and life stages, and overall tick abundance.

  14. Relating species abundance distributions to species-area curves in two Mediterranean-type shrublands

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Keeley, J.E.

    2003-01-01

    Based on both theoretical and empirical studies there is evidence that different species abundance distributions underlie different species-area relationships. Here I show that Australian and Californian shrubland communities (at the scale from 1 to 1000 m2) exhibit different species-area relationships and different species abundance patterns. The species-area relationship in Australian heathlands best fits an exponential model and species abundance (based on both density and cover) follows a narrow log normal distribution. In contrast, the species-area relationship in Californian shrublands is best fit with the power model and, although species abundance appears to fit a log normal distribution, the distribution is much broader than in Australian heathlands. I hypothesize that the primary driver of these differences is the abundance of small-stature annual species in California and the lack of annuals in Australian heathlands. Species-area is best fit by an exponential model in Australian heathlands because the bulk of the species are common and thus the species-area curves initially rise rapidly between 1 and 100 m2. Annuals in Californian shrublands generate very broad species abundance distributions with many uncommon or rare species. The power function is a better model in these communities because richness increases slowly from 1 to 100 m2 but more rapidly between 100 and 1000 m2 due to the abundance of rare or uncommon species that are more likely to be encountered at coarser spatial scales. The implications of this study are that both the exponential and power function models are legitimate representations of species-area relationships in different plant communities. Also, structural differences in community organization, arising from different species abundance distributions, may lead to different species-area curves, and this may be tied to patterns of life form distribution.

  15. Relating species abundance distributions to species-area curves in two Mediterranean-type shrublands

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Keeley, Jon E.

    2003-01-01

    Based on both theoretical and empirical studies there is evidence that different species abundance distributions underlie different species-area relationships. Here I show that Australian and Californian shrubland communities (at the scale from 1 to 1000 m2) exhibit different species-area relationships and different species abundance patterns. The species-area relationship in Australian heathlands best fits an exponential model and species abundance (based on both density and cover) follows a narrow log normal distribution. In contrast, the species-area relationship in Californian shrublands is best fit with the power model and, although species abundance appears to fit a log normal distribution, the distribution is much broader than in Australian heathlands. I hypothesize that the primary driver of these differences is the abundance of small-stature annual species in California and the lack of annuals in Australian heathlands. Species-area is best fit by an exponential model in Australian heathlands because the bulk of the species are common and thus the species-area curves initially rise rapidly between 1 and 100 m2. Annuals in Californian shrublands generate very broad species abundance distributions with many uncommon or rare species. The power function is a better model in these communities because richness increases slowly from 1 to 100 m2 but more rapidly between 100 and 1000 m2due to the abundance of rare or uncommon species that are more likely to be encountered at coarser spatial scales. The implications of this study are that both the exponential and power function models are legitimate representations of species-area relationships in different plant communities. Also, structural differences in community organization, arising from different species abundance distributions, may lead to different species-area curves, and this may be tied to patterns of life form distribution.

  16. Are ticks venomous animals?

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Introduction As an ecological adaptation venoms have evolved independently in several species of Metazoa. As haematophagous arthropods ticks are mainly considered as ectoparasites due to directly feeding on the skin of animal hosts. Ticks are of major importance since they serve as vectors for several diseases affecting humans and livestock animals. Ticks are rarely considered as venomous animals despite that tick saliva contains several protein families present in venomous taxa and that many Ixodida genera can induce paralysis and other types of toxicoses. Tick saliva was previously proposed as a special kind of venom since tick venom is used for blood feeding that counteracts host defense mechanisms. As a result, the present study provides evidence to reconsider the venomous properties of tick saliva. Results Based on our extensive literature mining and in silico research, we demonstrate that ticks share several similarities with other venomous taxa. Many tick salivary protein families and their previously described functions are homologous to proteins found in scorpion, spider, snake, platypus and bee venoms. This infers that there is a structural and functional convergence between several molecular components in tick saliva and the venoms from other recognized venomous taxa. We also highlight the fact that the immune response against tick saliva and venoms (from recognized venomous taxa) are both dominated by an allergic immunity background. Furthermore, by comparing the major molecular components of human saliva, as an example of a non-venomous animal, with that of ticks we find evidence that ticks resemble more venomous than non-venomous animals. Finally, we introduce our considerations regarding the evolution of venoms in Arachnida. Conclusions Taking into account the composition of tick saliva, the venomous functions that ticks have while interacting with their hosts, and the distinguishable differences between human (non-venomous) and tick salivary

  17. The effects of acoustic misclassification on cetacean species abundance estimation.

    PubMed

    Caillat, Marjolaine; Thomas, Len; Gillespie, Douglas

    2013-09-01

    To estimate the density or abundance of a cetacean species using acoustic detection data, it is necessary to correctly identify the species that are detected. Developing an automated species classifier with 100% correct classification rate for any species is likely to stay out of reach. It is therefore necessary to consider the effect of misidentified detections on the number of observed data and consequently on abundance or density estimation, and develop methods to cope with these misidentifications. If misclassification rates are known, it is possible to estimate the true numbers of detected calls without bias. However, misclassification and uncertainties in the level of misclassification increase the variance of the estimates. If the true numbers of calls from different species are similar, then a small amount of misclassification between species and a small amount of uncertainty around the classification probabilities does not have an overly detrimental effect on the overall variance. However, if there is a difference in the encounter rate between species calls and/or a large amount of uncertainty in misclassification rates, then the variance of the estimates becomes very large and this dramatically increases the variance of the final abundance estimate.

  18. Abundance of common species, not species richness, drives delivery of a real-world ecosystem service.

    PubMed

    Winfree, Rachael; Fox, Jeremy W; Williams, Neal M; Reilly, James R; Cariveau, Daniel P

    2015-07-01

    Biodiversity-ecosystem functioning experiments have established that species richness and composition are both important determinants of ecosystem function in an experimental context. Determining whether this result holds for real-world ecosystem services has remained elusive, however, largely due to the lack of analytical methods appropriate for large-scale, associational data. Here, we use a novel analytical approach, the Price equation, to partition the contribution to ecosystem services made by species richness, composition and abundance in four large-scale data sets on crop pollination by native bees. We found that abundance fluctuations of dominant species drove ecosystem service delivery, whereas richness changes were relatively unimportant because they primarily involved rare species that contributed little to function. Thus, the mechanism behind our results was the skewed species-abundance distribution. Our finding that a few common species, not species richness, drive ecosystem service delivery could have broad generality given the ubiquity of skewed species-abundance distributions in nature.

  19. Abundance of common species, not species richness, drives delivery of a real-world ecosystem service.

    PubMed

    Winfree, Rachael; Fox, Jeremy W; Williams, Neal M; Reilly, James R; Cariveau, Daniel P

    2015-07-01

    Biodiversity-ecosystem functioning experiments have established that species richness and composition are both important determinants of ecosystem function in an experimental context. Determining whether this result holds for real-world ecosystem services has remained elusive, however, largely due to the lack of analytical methods appropriate for large-scale, associational data. Here, we use a novel analytical approach, the Price equation, to partition the contribution to ecosystem services made by species richness, composition and abundance in four large-scale data sets on crop pollination by native bees. We found that abundance fluctuations of dominant species drove ecosystem service delivery, whereas richness changes were relatively unimportant because they primarily involved rare species that contributed little to function. Thus, the mechanism behind our results was the skewed species-abundance distribution. Our finding that a few common species, not species richness, drive ecosystem service delivery could have broad generality given the ubiquity of skewed species-abundance distributions in nature. PMID:25959973

  20. Ticks infesting bats (Mammalia: Chiroptera) in the Brazilian Pantanal.

    PubMed

    Muñoz-Leal, Sebastián; Eriksson, Alan; Santos, Carolina Ferreira; Fischer, Erich; de Almeida, Juliana Cardoso; Luz, Hermes R; Labruna, Marcelo B

    2016-05-01

    Ticks associated with bats have been poorly documented in the Neotropical Zoogeographical Region. In this study, a total of 1028 bats were sampled for tick infestations in the southern portion of the Brazilian Pantanal. A total of 368 ticks, morphologically identified as Ornithodoros hasei (n = 364) and O. mimon (n = 4), were collected from the following bat species: Artibeus planirostris, Platyrrhinus lineatus, Phyllostomus hastatus, Mimon crenulatum and Noctilio albiventris. Morphological identification of O. hasei was confirmed by molecular analysis. Regarding the most abundant bat species, only 40 (6.2%) out of 650 A. planirostris were infested by O. hasei, with a mean intensity of 7.2 ticks per infested bat, or a mean abundance of 0.44 ticks per sampled bat. Noteworthy, one single P. hastatus was infested by 55 O. hasei larvae, in contrast to the 2.5-7.2 range of mean intensity values for the whole study. As a complement to the present study, a total of 8 museum bat specimens (6 Noctilio albiventris and 2 N. leporinus), collected in the northern region of Pantanal, were examined for tick infestations. These bats contained 176 ticks, which were all morphologically identified as O. hasei larvae. Mean intensity of infestation was 22, with a range of 1-46 ticks per infested bat. Our results suggest that A. planirostris might play an important role in the natural life cycle of O. hasei in the Pantanal.

  1. Factors affecting Culicoides species composition and abundance in avian nests.

    PubMed

    Martínez-de la Puente, J; Merino, S; Tomás, G; Moreno, J; Morales, J; Lobato, E; Talavera, S; Sarto I Monteys, V

    2009-08-01

    Mechanisms affecting patterns of vector distribution among host individuals may influence the population and evolutionary dynamics of vectors, hosts and the parasites transmitted. We studied the role of different factors affecting the species composition and abundance of Culicoides found in nests of the blue tit (Cyanistes caeruleus). We identified 1531 females and 2 males of 7 different Culicoides species in nests, with C. simulator being the most abundant species, followed by C. kibunensis, C. festivipennis, C. segnis, C. truncorum, C. pictipennis and C. circumscriptus. We conducted a medicationxfumigation experiment randomly assigning bird's nests to different treatments, thereby generating groups of medicated and control pairs breeding in fumigated and control nests. Medicated pairs were injected with the anti-malarial drug Primaquine diluted in saline solution while control pairs were injected with saline solution. The fumigation treatment was carried out using insecticide solution or water for fumigated and control nests respectively. Brood size was the main factor associated with the abundance of biting midges probably because more nestlings may produce higher quantities of vector attractants. In addition, birds medicated against haemoparasites breeding in non-fumigated nests supported a higher abundance of C. festivipennis than the rest of the groups. Also, we found that the fumigation treatment reduced the abundance of engorged Culicoides in both medicated and control nests, thus indicating a reduction of feeding success produced by the insecticide. These results represent the first evidence for the role of different factors in affecting the Culicoides infracommunity in wild avian nests.

  2. Kolente virus, a rhabdovirus species isolated from ticks and bats in the Republic of Guinea

    PubMed Central

    Ghedin, Elodie; Rogers, Matthew B.; Widen, Steven G.; Guzman, Hilda; Travassos da Rosa, Amelia P. A.; Wood, Thomas G.; Fitch, Adam; Popov, Vsevolod; Holmes, Edward C.; Walker, Peter J.; Tesh, Robert B.

    2013-01-01

    Kolente virus (KOLEV) is a rhabdovirus originally isolated from ticks and a bat in Guinea, West Africa, in 1985. Although tests at the time of isolation suggested that KOLEV is a novel rhabdovirus, it has remained largely uncharacterized. We assembled the complete genome sequence of the prototype strain DakAr K7292, which was found to encode the five canonical rhabdovirus structural proteins (N, P, M, G and L) with alternative ORFs (>180 nt) in the P and L genes. Serologically, KOLEV exhibited a weak antigenic relationship with Barur and Fukuoka viruses in the Kern Canyon group. Phylogenetic analysis revealed that KOLEV represents a distinct and divergent lineage that shows no clear relationship to any rhabdovirus except Oita virus, although with limited phylogenetic resolution. In summary, KOLEV represents a novel species in the family Rhabdoviridae. PMID:24062532

  3. Kolente virus, a rhabdovirus species isolated from ticks and bats in the Republic of Guinea.

    PubMed

    Ghedin, Elodie; Rogers, Matthew B; Widen, Steven G; Guzman, Hilda; Travassos da Rosa, Amelia P A; Wood, Thomas G; Fitch, Adam; Popov, Vsevolod; Holmes, Edward C; Walker, Peter J; Vasilakis, Nikos; Tesh, Robert B

    2013-12-01

    Kolente virus (KOLEV) is a rhabdovirus originally isolated from ticks and a bat in Guinea, West Africa, in 1985. Although tests at the time of isolation suggested that KOLEV is a novel rhabdovirus, it has remained largely uncharacterized. We assembled the complete genome sequence of the prototype strain DakAr K7292, which was found to encode the five canonical rhabdovirus structural proteins (N, P, M, G and L) with alternative ORFs (>180 nt) in the P and L genes. Serologically, KOLEV exhibited a weak antigenic relationship with Barur and Fukuoka viruses in the Kern Canyon group. Phylogenetic analysis revealed that KOLEV represents a distinct and divergent lineage that shows no clear relationship to any rhabdovirus except Oita virus, although with limited phylogenetic resolution. In summary, KOLEV represents a novel species in the family Rhabdoviridae.

  4. Capitalizing on opportunistic data for monitoring relative abundances of species.

    PubMed

    Giraud, Christophe; Calenge, Clément; Coron, Camille; Julliard, Romain

    2016-06-01

    With the internet, a massive amount of information on species abundance can be collected by citizen science programs. However, these data are often difficult to use directly in statistical inference, as their collection is generally opportunistic, and the distribution of the sampling effort is often not known. In this article, we develop a general statistical framework to combine such "opportunistic data" with data collected using schemes characterized by a known sampling effort. Under some structural assumptions regarding the sampling effort and detectability, our approach makes it possible to estimate the relative abundance of several species in different sites. It can be implemented through a simple generalized linear model. We illustrate the framework with typical bird datasets from the Aquitaine region in south-western France. We show that, under some assumptions, our approach provides estimates that are more precise than the ones obtained from the dataset with a known sampling effort alone. When the opportunistic data are abundant, the gain in precision may be considerable, especially for rare species. We also show that estimates can be obtained even for species recorded only in the opportunistic scheme. Opportunistic data combined with a relatively small amount of data collected with a known effort may thus provide access to accurate and precise estimates of quantitative changes in relative abundance over space and/or time. PMID:26496390

  5. Effectiveness of mosquito traps in measuring species abundance and composition

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Mosquito species abundance and composition estimates provided by trapping devices are commonly used to guide control efforts, but knowledge of trap biases is necessary for accurately interpreting results. We compared the Mosquito Magnet – Pro, the Mosquito Magnet – X and the CDC Miniature Light Trap...

  6. Measuring β-diversity with species abundance data.

    PubMed

    Barwell, Louise J; Isaac, Nick J B; Kunin, William E

    2015-07-01

    In 2003, 24 presence-absence β-diversity metrics were reviewed and a number of trade-offs and redundancies identified. We present a parallel investigation into the performance of abundance-based metrics of β-diversity. β-diversity is a multi-faceted concept, central to spatial ecology. There are multiple metrics available to quantify it: the choice of metric is an important decision. We test 16 conceptual properties and two sampling properties of a β-diversity metric: metrics should be 1) independent of α-diversity and 2) cumulative along a gradient of species turnover. Similarity should be 3) probabilistic when assemblages are independently and identically distributed. Metrics should have 4) a minimum of zero and increase monotonically with the degree of 5) species turnover, 6) decoupling of species ranks and 7) evenness differences. However, complete species turnover should always generate greater values of β than extreme 8) rank shifts or 9) evenness differences. Metrics should 10) have a fixed upper limit, 11) symmetry (βA,B  = βB,A ), 12) double-zero asymmetry for double absences and double presences and 13) not decrease in a series of nested assemblages. Additionally, metrics should be independent of 14) species replication 15) the units of abundance and 16) differences in total abundance between sampling units. When samples are used to infer β-diversity, metrics should be 1) independent of sample sizes and 2) independent of unequal sample sizes. We test 29 metrics for these properties and five 'personality' properties. Thirteen metrics were outperformed or equalled across all conceptual and sampling properties. Differences in sensitivity to species' abundance lead to a performance trade-off between sample size bias and the ability to detect turnover among rare species. In general, abundance-based metrics are substantially less biased in the face of undersampling, although the presence-absence metric, βsim , performed well overall. Only

  7. Measuring β-diversity with species abundance data.

    PubMed

    Barwell, Louise J; Isaac, Nick J B; Kunin, William E

    2015-07-01

    In 2003, 24 presence-absence β-diversity metrics were reviewed and a number of trade-offs and redundancies identified. We present a parallel investigation into the performance of abundance-based metrics of β-diversity. β-diversity is a multi-faceted concept, central to spatial ecology. There are multiple metrics available to quantify it: the choice of metric is an important decision. We test 16 conceptual properties and two sampling properties of a β-diversity metric: metrics should be 1) independent of α-diversity and 2) cumulative along a gradient of species turnover. Similarity should be 3) probabilistic when assemblages are independently and identically distributed. Metrics should have 4) a minimum of zero and increase monotonically with the degree of 5) species turnover, 6) decoupling of species ranks and 7) evenness differences. However, complete species turnover should always generate greater values of β than extreme 8) rank shifts or 9) evenness differences. Metrics should 10) have a fixed upper limit, 11) symmetry (βA,B  = βB,A ), 12) double-zero asymmetry for double absences and double presences and 13) not decrease in a series of nested assemblages. Additionally, metrics should be independent of 14) species replication 15) the units of abundance and 16) differences in total abundance between sampling units. When samples are used to infer β-diversity, metrics should be 1) independent of sample sizes and 2) independent of unequal sample sizes. We test 29 metrics for these properties and five 'personality' properties. Thirteen metrics were outperformed or equalled across all conceptual and sampling properties. Differences in sensitivity to species' abundance lead to a performance trade-off between sample size bias and the ability to detect turnover among rare species. In general, abundance-based metrics are substantially less biased in the face of undersampling, although the presence-absence metric, βsim , performed well overall. Only

  8. Analytical formulae for computing dominance from species-abundance distributions.

    PubMed

    Fung, Tak; Villain, Laura; Chisholm, Ryan A

    2015-12-01

    The evenness of an ecological community affects ecosystem structure, functioning and stability, and has implications for biodiversity conservation. In uneven communities, most species are rare while a few dominant species drive ecosystem-level properties. In even communities, dominance is lower, with possibly many species playing key ecological roles. The dominance aspect of evenness can be measured as a decreasing function of the proportion of species required to make up a fixed fraction (e.g., half) of individuals in a community. Here we sought general rules about dominance in ecological communities by linking dominance mathematically to the parameters of common theoretical species-abundance distributions (SADs). We found that if a community's SAD was log-series or lognormal, then dominance was almost inevitably high, with fewer than 40% of species required to account for 90% of all individuals. Dominance for communities with an exponential SAD was lower but still typically high, with fewer than 40% of species required to account for 70% of all individuals. In contrast, communities with a gamma SAD only exhibited high dominance when the average species abundance was below a threshold of approximately 100. Furthermore, we showed that exact values of dominance were highly scale-dependent, exhibiting non-linear trends with changing average species abundance. We also applied our formulae to SADs derived from a mechanistic community model to demonstrate how dominance can increase with environmental variance. Overall, our study provides a rigorous basis for theoretical explorations of the dynamics of dominance in ecological communities, and how this affects ecosystem functioning and stability. PMID:26409166

  9. Tick Paralysis

    MedlinePlus

    ... Borrelia myamotoi Infections Colorado Tick Fever Ehrlichiosis Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever Southern Tick Associated Rash Illness (STARI) ... Infections Colorado Tick Fever Ehrlichiosis Lyme Disease Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever Southern Tick Associated Rash Illness (STARI) ...

  10. Avoiding Ticks

    MedlinePlus

    ... Avoiding ticks On people On pets In the yard Removing a tick Symptoms of tickborne illness Geographic ... ticks on your pets Preventing ticks in the yard File Formats Help: How do I view different ...

  11. Assessing introduction risk using species' rank-abundance distributions.

    PubMed

    Chan, Farrah T; Bradie, Johanna; Briski, Elizabeta; Bailey, Sarah A; Simard, Nathalie; MacIsaac, Hugh J

    2015-01-22

    Mixed-species assemblages are often unintentionally introduced into new ecosystems. Analysing how assemblage structure varies during transport may provide insights into how introduction risk changes before propagules are released. Characterization of introduction risk is typically based on assessments of colonization pressure (CP, the number of species transported) and total propagule pressure (total PP, the total abundance of propagules released) associated with an invasion vector. Generally, invasion potential following introduction increases with greater CP or total PP. Here, we extend these assessments using rank-abundance distributions to examine how CP : total PP relationships change temporally in ballast water of ocean-going ships. Rank-abundance distributions and CP : total PP patterns varied widely between trans-Atlantic and trans-Pacific voyages, with the latter appearing to pose a much lower risk than the former. Responses also differed by taxonomic group, with invertebrates experiencing losses mainly in total PP, while diatoms and dinoflagellates sustained losses mainly in CP. In certain cases, open-ocean ballast water exchange appeared to increase introduction risk by uptake of new species or supplementation of existing ones. Our study demonstrates that rank-abundance distributions provide new insights into the utility of CP and PP in characterizing introduction risk. PMID:25473007

  12. Species richness, equitability, and abundance of ants in disturbed landscapes

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Graham, J.H.; Krzysik, A.J.; Kovacic, D.A.; Duda, J.J.; Freeman, D.C.; Emlen, J.M.; Zak, J.C.; Long, W.R.; Wallace, M.P.; Chamberlin-Graham, C.; Nutter, J.P.; Balbach, H.E.

    2009-01-01

    Ants are used as indicators of environmental change in disturbed landscapes, often without adequate understanding of their response to disturbance. Ant communities in the southeastern United States displayed a hump-backed species richness curve against an index of landscape disturbance. Forty sites at Fort Benning, in west-central Georgia, covered a spectrum of habitat disturbance (military training and fire) in upland forest. Sites disturbed by military training had fewer trees, less canopy cover, more bare ground, and warmer, more compact soils with shallower A-horizons. We sampled ground-dwelling ants with pitfall traps, and measured 15 habitat variables related to vegetation and soil. Ant species richness was greatest with a relative disturbance of 43%, but equitability was greatest with no disturbance. Ant abundance was greatest with a relative disturbance of 85%. High species richness at intermediate disturbance was associated with greater within-site spatial heterogeneity. Species richness was also associated with intermediate values of the normalized difference vegetation index (NDVI), a correlate of net primary productivity (NPP). Available NPP (the product of NDVI and the fraction of days that soil temperature exceeded 25 ??C), however, was positively correlated with species richness, though not with ant abundance. Species richness was unrelated to soil texture, total ground cover, and fire frequency. Ant species richness and equitability are potential state indicators of the soil arthropod community. Moreover, equitability can be used to monitor ecosystem change. ?? 2008 Elsevier Ltd.

  13. Climate, niche, ticks, and models: what they are and how we should interpret them.

    PubMed

    Estrada-Peña, Agustín

    2008-12-01

    Ticks spend most of their life cycle in the environment, and all tick life cycle stages are dependent on a complex combination of climate variables. Furthermore, host availability and vegetation significantly modulate the dynamics of tick populations. Tick recruitment is dependent on successful reproduction, which in turn requires sufficient adult tick densities, available blood meal sources, and egg survival. Though many animals can serve as hosts, there are several determinants of host suitability. For example, host availability in time and space is an important determinant of tick bionomics. Shelter and protection from environmental extremes are critical to tick survival. Questing and diapausing ticks are vulnerable to extremes of temperature and humidity. There are concerns about how predicted climate change may alter several critical features of host-parasite relationships of ticks, the potential for invasion of new areas or alteration of patterns of pathogen transmission in particular. However, modeling approaches that relate known occurrences of tick species to climate (and/or landscape) features and predict geographic occurrences are not completely fulfilling our needs to understand how the "tick panorama" can change as a consequence of these climate trends. This is a short review about the concept of ecological niche as applied to ticks, as well as some raised concerns about its evaluation and strict definition, and its usefulness to map geographical suitability for ticks. Comments about how climate, hosts, and landscape configuration are briefly discussed regarding its applicability to tick mapping and with reference about their impact on tick abundance. I will further comment on already published observations about observed changes in the geographical range of ticks in parts of Europe. PMID:19030890

  14. Molecular detection of zoonotic tick-borne pathogens from ticks collected from ruminants in four South African provinces.

    PubMed

    Mtshali, Khethiwe; Khumalo, Zth; Nakao, Ryo; Grab, Dennis J; Sugimoto, Chihiro; Thekisoe, Omm

    2016-01-01

    Ticks carry and transmit a remarkable array of pathogens including bacteria, protozoa and viruses, which may be of veterinary and/or of medical significance. With little to no information regarding the presence of tick-borne zoonotic pathogens or their known vectors in southern Africa, the aim of our study was to screen for Anaplasma phagocytophilum, Borrelia burgdorferi, Coxiella burnetii, Rickettsia species and Ehrlichia ruminantium in ticks collected and identified from ruminants in the Eastern Cape, Free State, KwaZulu-Natal and Mpumalanga Provinces of South Africa. The most abundant tick species identified in this study were Rhipicephalus evertsi evertsi (40%), Rhipicephalus species (35%), Amblyomma hebraeum (10%) and Rhipicephalus decoloratus (14%). A total of 1634 ticks were collected. DNA was extracted, and samples were subjected to PCR amplification and sequencing. The overall infection rates of ticks with the target pathogens in the four Provinces were as follows: A. phagocytophilum, 7%; C. burnetii, 7%; E. ruminantium, 28%; and Rickettsia spp., 27%. The presence of B. burgdorferi could not be confirmed. The findings of this study show that zoonotic pathogens are present in ticks in the studied South African provinces. This information will aid in the epidemiology of tick-borne zoonotic diseases in the country as well as in raising awareness about such diseases in the veterinary, medical and tourism sectors, as they may be the most affected.

  15. Molecular detection of zoonotic tick-borne pathogens from ticks collected from ruminants in four South African provinces

    PubMed Central

    MTSHALI, Khethiwe; KHUMALO, Zamantungwa T. H.; NAKAO, Ryo; GRAB, Dennis J.; SUGIMOTO, Chihiro; THEKISOE, Oriel M. M.

    2015-01-01

    Ticks carry and transmit a remarkable array of pathogens including bacteria, protozoa and viruses, which may be of veterinary and/or of medical significance. With little to no information regarding the presence of tick-borne zoonotic pathogens or their known vectors in southern Africa, the aim of our study was to screen for Anaplasma phagocytophilum, Borrelia burgdorferi, Coxiella burnetii, Rickettsia species and Ehrlichia ruminantium in ticks collected and identified from ruminants in the Eastern Cape, Free State, KwaZulu-Natal and Mpumalanga Provinces of South Africa. The most abundant tick species identified in this study were Rhipicephalus evertsi evertsi (40%), Rhipicephalus species (35%), Amblyomma hebraeum (10%) and Rhipicephalus decoloratus (14%). A total of 1634 ticks were collected. DNA was extracted, and samples were subjected to PCR amplification and sequencing. The overall infection rates of ticks with the target pathogens in the four Provinces were as follows: A. phagocytophilum, 7%; C. burnetii, 7%; E. ruminantium, 28%; and Rickettsia spp., 27%. The presence of B. burgdorferi could not be confirmed. The findings of this study show that zoonotic pathogens are present in ticks in the studied South African provinces. This information will aid in the epidemiology of tick-borne zoonotic diseases in the country as well as in raising awareness about such diseases in the veterinary, medical and tourism sectors, as they may be the most affected. PMID:26227797

  16. Diversity of ticks (Acari: Ixodidae) infesting cheetahs (Acinoyx jubatus) at three breeding centres in South Africa and activity patterns of questing ticks.

    PubMed

    Golezardy, Habib; Oosthuizen, Marinda C; Penzhorn, Barend L

    2016-07-01

    Ticks were collected from 191 cheetahs at three breeding centres in North West and Limpopo Provinces, South Africa. Haemaphysalis elliptica, a common tick of large felids, was the most abundant species collected, while Amblyomma hebraeum and Rhipicephalus simus occurred in lower numbers. In addition to these three species, drag-sampling of the vegetation revealed the presence of Amblyomma marmoreum, Rhipicephalus (B.) decoloratus and Rhipicephalus zambeziensis. The presence of free-ranging antelopes, murid rodents and tortoises at the breeding centres probably contributed to the availability of immature tick stages on the vegetation. Diurnal and seasonal questing patterns of ixodid ticks were investigated at monthly intervals at the largest cheetah-breeding centre. Questing ticks were most abundant on the vegetation during the warm summer months. Most questing H. elliptica larvae and nymphs were collected from the vegetation in the early morning and late afternoon and fewest during the middle of the day. PMID:27020735

  17. Novel Candidatus rickettsia species detected in nostril tick from human, Gabon, 2014.

    PubMed

    Lopez-Velez, Rogelio; Palomar, Ana M; Oteo, José A; Norman, Francesca F; Pérez-Molina, José A; Portillo, Aránzazu

    2015-02-01

    We report the identification of a nymphal nostril tick (Amblyomma sp.) from a national park visitor in Gabon and subsequent molecular detection and characterization of tickborne bacteria. Our findings provide evidence of a potentially new Rickettsia sp. circulating in Africa and indicate that tick bites may pose a risk to persons visiting parks in the region.

  18. Divergent environmental preferences and areas of sympatry of tick species in the Amblyomma cajennense complex (Ixodidae).

    PubMed

    Estrada-Peña, Agustín; Tarragona, Evelina L; Vesco, Umberto; Meneghi, Daniele de; Mastropaolo, Mariano; Mangold, Atilio J; Guglielmone, Alberto A; Nava, Santiago

    2014-12-01

    Four species of Neotropical ticks, Amblyomma mixtum, Amblyomma cajennense, Amblyomma tonelliae and Amblyomma sculptum (formerly included in the catch-all name A. cajennense), have an allopatric distribution in much of their range, with areas of parapatry for at least two of them. We inferred the abiotic niches of these organisms using coefficients of a harmonic regression of the temperature and the Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI, reflecting plant stress) from remotely sensed data from MODIS satellites with 0.05° spatial resolution. Combinations of coefficients describing the phenology of these two variables pointed to divergent niche preferences, compatible with previous events of vicariance among the species. Amblyomma cajennense has been recorded in areas with small variations in temperature and NDVI. The remaining species were recorded in areas with large variations. The maximum environmental niche overlap was ∼73.6% between A. mixtum and A. cajennense and 73.5% between A. tonelliae and A. sculptum. Projecting these inferences on the geographical space revealed probable areas of sympatry or parapatry between A. mixtum and A. cajennense or between A. tonelliae and A. sculptum, the latter of which was confirmed with field collections. The A. sculptum distribution overlaps with that of A. tonelliae in northern Argentina and Paraguay; parapatry occurs at one extreme of the conditions occupied by both species. Compared with areas of allopatry, sites with both species had consistently lower temperatures, except for 10-12weeks during the summer, and higher NDVI values throughout the year. We hypothesise that the overlap between A. tonelliae and A. sculptum resulted from secondary contact between populations, with A. sculptum adapting to sites with high water availability to balance high summer temperatures. Additional surveys of the areas of spatial overlap among these species are necessary to elucidate the forces driving their evolution and their

  19. Climate niches of tick species in the Mediterranean region: modeling of occurrence data, distributional constraints, and impact of climate change.

    PubMed

    Estrada-Peña, Agustín; Venzal, José M

    2007-11-01

    In this study, we used ecological niche factor analysis (ENFA) and principal components analysis (PCA) of climate variables to define the climate niches and areas of potential colonization of six species of ticks in the Mediterranean region: Dermacentor marginatus Sulzer, Rhipicephalus bursa Canestrini & Fanzago, Rhipicephalus turanicus Pomerantsev, Matikashvili & Lototsky, Hyalomma marginatum Koch, Hyalomma excavatum Koch, and Boophilus annulatus (Say). ENFA generated distribution models that varied in accuracy from high to very high (area under the curve [AUC] = 0.87-0.97), with the lowest AUC obtained for B. annulatus. PCA provided an adequate separation of the climate niches of different species in the reduced space of the variables. Climate scenarios and factorial consensus analysis were used to evaluate the geographic impact of climate change (as turnover in habitat suitability) on the niches of the ticks and net variations in habitat availability. The scenario that was most compatible with estimates of future climate in the Mediterranean region (increase in temperature and decrease in rainfall) was predicted to produce a sharp increase in the extent of suitable habitat for R. bursa, R. turanicus, and H. marginatum. This scenario would result in a northward expansion of suitable habitat areas for these three species. The highest impact (highest species turnover) would be recorded at the margin of the current distribution range of the three species. A sensitivity analysis of the ecological response of the ticks to the climate change scenarios showed that the response is statistically different in different regions of the PCA-derived niche. These results outline the need to further investigate the potential of bioclimate models to obtain accurate estimations of tick species turnover under conditions of climate change over wide areas.

  20. Foraminifera Species Richness, Abundance, and Diversity Research in Bolinas, California

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Brunwin, N.; Ingram, Z.; Mendez, M.; Sandoval, K.

    2015-12-01

    Foraminifera are abundant, diverse, respond rapidly to environmental change, and are present in all marine and estuarine environments, making them important indicator species. A survey of occurrence and distribution of foraminifera in the Bolinas Lagoon, Marin County, California was carried out by Hedman in 1975, but no study since has focused on foraminiferal composition within this important ecosystem. In July 2015, the Careers in Science (CiS) Intern Program collected samples at 12 sites previously examined in the 1975 study. Thirty-six samples were collected from the upper few centimeters of sediment from a variety of intertidal and subtidal environments within the lagoon. Foraminifera from each sample were isolated, identified and species richness, abundance and diversity quantified. Furthermore, comparisons of faunal composition represented in our recent collection and that of Hedman's 1975 report are made.

  1. Abundance anomaly of the 13C species of CCH

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sakai, N.; Saruwatari, O.; Sakai, T.; Takano, S.; Yamamoto, S.

    2010-03-01

    Aims: We have observed the N = 1-0 lines of CCH and its 13C isotopic species toward a cold dark cloud, TMC-1 and a star-forming region, L1527, to investigate the 13C abundances and formation pathways of CCH. Methods: The observations have been carried out with the IRAM 30 m telescope. Results: We have successfully detected the lines of 13CCH and C13CH toward the both sources and found a significant intensity difference between the two 13C isotopic species. The [C13CH] /[13CCH] abundance ratios are 1.6 ± 0.4 (3σ) and 1.6 ± 0.1 (3σ) for TMC-1 and L1527, respectively. The abundance difference between C13CH and 13CCH means that the two carbon atoms of CCH are not equivalent in the formation pathway. On the other hand, the [CCH]/[C13CH] and [CCH]/[13CCH] ratios are evaluated to be larger than 170 and 250 toward TMC-1, and to be larger than 80 and 135 toward L1527, respectively. Therefore, both of the 13C species are significantly diluted in comparison with the interstellar 12C/13C ratio of 60. The dilution is discussed in terms of a behavior of 13C in molecular clouds.

  2. Measurement scale in maximum entropy models of species abundance

    PubMed Central

    Frank, Steven A.

    2010-01-01

    The consistency of the species abundance distribution across diverse communities has attracted widespread attention. In this paper, I argue that the consistency of pattern arises because diverse ecological mechanisms share a common symmetry with regard to measurement scale. By symmetry, I mean that different ecological processes preserve the same measure of information and lose all other information in the aggregation of various perturbations. I frame these explanations of symmetry, measurement, and aggregation in terms of a recently developed extension to the theory of maximum entropy. I show that the natural measurement scale for the species abundance distribution is log-linear: the information in observations at small population sizes scales logarithmically and, as population size increases, the scaling of information grades from logarithmic to linear. Such log-linear scaling leads naturally to a gamma distribution for species abundance, which matches well with the observed patterns. Much of the variation between samples can be explained by the magnitude at which the measurement scale grades from logarithmic to linear. This measurement approach can be applied to the similar problem of allelic diversity in population genetics and to a wide variety of other patterns in biology. PMID:21265915

  3. Neutral theory and relative species abundance in ecology

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Volkov, Igor; Banavar, Jayanth R.; Hubbell, Stephen P.; Maritan, Amos

    2003-08-01

    The theory of island biogeography asserts that an island or a local community approaches an equilibrium species richness as a result of the interplay between the immigration of species from the much larger metacommunity source area and local extinction of species on the island (local community). Hubbell generalized this neutral theory to explore the expected steady-state distribution of relative species abundance (RSA) in the local community under restricted immigration. Here we present a theoretical framework for the unified neutral theory of biodiversity and an analytical solution for the distribution of the RSA both in the metacommunity (Fisher's log series) and in the local community, where there are fewer rare species. Rare species are more extinction-prone, and once they go locally extinct, they take longer to re-immigrate than do common species. Contrary to recent assertions, we show that the analytical solution provides a better fit, with fewer free parameters, to the RSA distribution of tree species on Barro Colorado Island, Panama, than the lognormal distribution.

  4. Biological control of ticks

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Samish, M.; Ginsberg, H.; Glazer, I.; Bowman, A.S.; Nuttall, P.

    2004-01-01

    Ticks have numerous natural enemies, but only a few species have been evaluated as tick biocontrol agents (BCAs). Some laboratory results suggest that several bacteria are pathogenic to ticks, but their mode of action and their potential value as biocontrol agents remain to be determined. The most promising entomopathogenic fungi appear to be Metarhizium anisopliae and Beauveria bassiana, strains of which are already commercially available for the control of some pests. Development of effective formulations is critical for tick management. Entomopathogenic nematodes that are pathogenic to ticks can potentially control ticks, but improved formulations and selection of novel nematode strains are needed. Parasitoid wasps of the genus Ixodiphagus do not typically control ticks under natural conditions, but inundative releases show potential value. Most predators of ticks are generalists, with a limited potential for tick management (one possible exception is oxpeckers in Africa). Biological control is likely to play a substantial role in future IPM programmes for ticks because of the diversity of taxa that show high potential as tick BCAs. Considerable research is required to select appropriate strains, develop them as BCAs, establish their effectiveness, and devise production strategies to bring them to practical use.

  5. Cross-Species Interferon Signaling Boosts Microbicidal Activity within the Tick Vector.

    PubMed

    Smith, Alexis A; Navasa, Nicolas; Yang, Xiuli; Wilder, Cara N; Buyuktanir, Ozlem; Marques, Adriana; Anguita, Juan; Pal, Utpal

    2016-07-13

    Evolution of hematophagy in blood-sucking parasites likely involves communication with their hosts. We find that Ixodes ticks are responsive to IFNγ acquired in a blood meal from mice infected with the Lyme disease-causing bacteria Borrelia burgdorferi, leading to induction of antimicrobial responses. Ixodes ticks parasitizing B. burgdorferi-infected mice upregulated an I. scapularis Rho-like GTPase (IGTPase). IGTPase knockdown enhanced B. burgdorferi levels in post-fed ticks, suggesting this protein controls spirochete survival. Notably, IGTPase was only induced during pathogen acquisition from mice and not upon transmission to naive hosts. Microinjection of ticks with IFNγ induced IGTPase, and ticks parasitizing IFNγ knockout mice, failed to upregulate IGTPase. Additionally, ticks lacking the transcription factor STAT, which signals downstream of IFNγ, did not induce IGTPase. IGTPase expression induced antimicrobial peptides, including Dae2, previously shown to inhibit B. burgdorferi. These results identify an interspecies signaling cascade allowing ticks to detect invading bacteria and mount microbicidal responses. PMID:27374407

  6. Estimating the number of species in a stochastic abundance model.

    PubMed

    Chao, Anne; Bunge, John

    2002-09-01

    Consider a stochastic abundance model in which the species arrive in the sample according to independent Poisson processes, where the abundance parameters of the processes follow a gamma distribution. We propose a new estimator of the number of species for this model. The estimator takes the form of the number of duplicated species (i.e., species represented by two or more individuals) divided by an estimated duplication fraction. The duplication fraction is estimated from all frequencies including singleton information. The new estimator is closely related to the sample coverage estimator presented by Chao and Lee (1992, Journal of the American Statistical Association 87, 210-217). We illustrate the procedure using the Malayan butterfly data discussed by Fisher, Corbet, and Williams (1943, Journal of Animal Ecology 12, 42-58) and a 1989 Christmas Bird Count dataset collected in Florida, U.S.A. Simulation studies show that this estimator compares well with maximum likelihood estimators (i.e., empirical Bayes estimators from the Bayesian viewpoint) for which an iterative numerical procedure is needed and may be infeasible.

  7. When can species abundance data reveal non-neutrality?

    PubMed

    Al Hammal, Omar; Alonso, David; Etienne, Rampal S; Cornell, Stephen J

    2015-03-01

    Species abundance distributions (SAD) are probably ecology's most well-known empirical pattern, and over the last decades many models have been proposed to explain their shape. There is no consensus over which model is correct, because the degree to which different processes can be discerned from SAD patterns has not yet been rigorously quantified. We present a power calculation to quantify our ability to detect deviations from neutrality using species abundance data. We study non-neutral stochastic community models, and show that the presence of non-neutral processes is detectable if sample size is large enough and/or the amplitude of the effect is strong enough. Our framework can be used for any candidate community model that can be simulated on a computer, and determines both the sampling effort required to distinguish between alternative processes, and a range for the strength of non-neutral processes in communities whose patterns are statistically consistent with neutral theory. We find that even data sets of the scale of the 50 Ha forest plot on Barro Colorado Island, Panama, are unlikely to be large enough to detect deviations from neutrality caused by competitive interactions alone, though the presence of multiple non-neutral processes with contrasting effects on abundance distributions may be detectable. PMID:25793889

  8. When Can Species Abundance Data Reveal Non-neutrality?

    PubMed Central

    Al Hammal, Omar; Alonso, David; Etienne, Rampal S.; Cornell, Stephen J.

    2015-01-01

    Species abundance distributions (SAD) are probably ecology’s most well-known empirical pattern, and over the last decades many models have been proposed to explain their shape. There is no consensus over which model is correct, because the degree to which different processes can be discerned from SAD patterns has not yet been rigorously quantified. We present a power calculation to quantify our ability to detect deviations from neutrality using species abundance data. We study non-neutral stochastic community models, and show that the presence of non-neutral processes is detectable if sample size is large enough and/or the amplitude of the effect is strong enough. Our framework can be used for any candidate community model that can be simulated on a computer, and determines both the sampling effort required to distinguish between alternative processes, and a range for the strength of non-neutral processes in communities whose patterns are statistically consistent with neutral theory. We find that even data sets of the scale of the 50 Ha forest plot on Barro Colorado Island, Panama, are unlikely to be large enough to detect deviations from neutrality caused by competitive interactions alone, though the presence of multiple non-neutral processes with contrasting effects on abundance distributions may be detectable. PMID:25793889

  9. Transport of ixodid ticks and tick-borne pathogens by migratory birds.

    PubMed

    Hasle, Gunnar

    2013-01-01

    Birds, particularly passerines, can be parasitized by Ixodid ticks, which may be infected with tick-borne pathogens, like Borrelia spp., Babesia spp., Anaplasma, Rickettsia/Coxiella, and tick-borne encephalitis virus. The prevalence of ticks on birds varies over years, season, locality and different bird species. The prevalence of ticks on different species depends mainly on the degree of feeding on the ground. In Europe, the Turdus spp., especially the blackbird, Turdus merula, appears to be most important for harboring ticks. Birds can easily cross barriers, like fences, mountains, glaciers, desserts and oceans, which would stop mammals, and they can move much faster than the wingless hosts. Birds can potentially transport tick-borne pathogens by transporting infected ticks, by being infected with tick-borne pathogens and transmit the pathogens to the ticks, and possibly act as hosts for transfer of pathogens between ticks through co-feeding. Knowledge of the bird migration routes and of the spatial distribution of tick species and tick-borne pathogens is crucial for understanding the possible impact of birds as spreaders of ticks and tick-borne pathogens. Successful colonization of new tick species or introduction of new tick-borne pathogens will depend on suitable climate, vegetation and hosts. Although it has never been demonstrated that a new tick species, or a new tick pathogen, actually has been established in a new locality after being seeded there by birds, evidence strongly suggests that this could occur.

  10. Which Models Are Appropriate for Six Subtropical Forests: Species-Area and Species-Abundance Models

    PubMed Central

    Wei, Shi Guang; Li, Lin; Chen, Zhen Cheng; Lian, Ju Yu; Lin, Guo Jun; Huang, Zhong Liang; Yin, Zuo Yun

    2014-01-01

    The species-area relationship is one of the most important topic in the study of species diversity, conservation biology and landscape ecology. The species-area relationship curves describe the increase of species number with increasing area, and have been modeled by various equations. In this paper, we used detailed data from six 1-ha subtropical forest communities to fit three species-area relationship models. The coefficient of determination and F ratio of ANOVA showed all the three models fitted well to the species-area relationship data in the subtropical communities, with the logarithm model performing better than the other two models. We also used the three species-abundance distributions, namely the lognormal, logcauchy and logseries model, to fit them to the species-abundance data of six communities. In this case, the logcauchy model had the better fit based on the coefficient of determination. Our research reveals that the rare species always exist in the six communities, corroborating the neutral theory of Hubbell. Furthermore, we explained why all species-abundance figures appeared to be left-side truncated. This was due to subtropical forests have high diversity, and their large species number includes many rare species. PMID:24755956

  11. Discovery of Rickettsia species in Dermacentor niveus Neumann ticks by investigating the diversity of bacterial communities.

    PubMed

    Zhuang, Lu; Wang, Cheng-Yan; Tong, Yi-Gang; Tang, Fang; Yang, Hong; Liu, Wei; Cao, Wu-Chun

    2014-09-01

    Ticks (Dermacentor niveus Neumann) were collected from Tacheng, Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region, and their bacterial diversity was investigated using the 16S RNA gene library method from one pooled sample. A total of 452 clones was successfully sequenced and assigned to 4 phyla. The dominant phylum was the Proteobacteria, accounting for 62.8% of all the clones of the 16S rRNA gene at the confidence level 80%. The other sequences were assigned to the phyla Bacteroidetes, Firmicutes, Actinobacteria and accounted for 13.5%, 12.4%, and 11.3%, respectively. These results provide an insight into the bacterial diversity associated with D. niveus ticks in the natural environment of Tacheng. They indicate the occurrence of Rickettsia raoultii and Rickettsia slovaca in D. niveus ticks in this area, and as a consequence, cases of TIBOLA/DEBONEL may occur (tick-borne lymphadenopathy/Dermacentor-borne necrosis erythema and lymphadenopathy).

  12. Seroprevalence of Borrelia burgdorferi sensu lato and tick-borne encephalitis virus in zoo animal species in the Czech Republic.

    PubMed

    Sirmarová, Jana; Tichá, Lucie; Golovchenko, Marina; Salát, Jiří; Grubhoffer, Libor; Rudenko, Nataliia; Nowotny, Norbert; Růžek, Daniel

    2014-09-01

    This study was conducted to evaluate the prevalence of antibodies against Borrelia bugdorferi (Bb) s.l. and tick-borne encephalitis virus (TBEV) in zoo animals in the Czech Republic. We collected 133 serum samples from 69 animal species from 5 zoos located in different parts of the country. The samples were obtained from even-toed ungulates (n=78; 42 species), odd-toed ungulates (n=32; 11 species), carnivores (n=13; 9 species), primates (n=2, 2 species), birds (n=3; 2 species), and reptiles (n=5; 3 species). A high antibody prevalence (60%) was observed for Bb s.l. On the other hand, only two animals had TBEV-specific antibodies: a markhor (Capra falconeri) and a reindeer (Rangifer tarandus), both from the same zoo, located in an area endemic for TBEV. Both of these animals were also positive for Bb s.l. antibodies. Our results indicate that a high number of animal species in the Czech zoos were exposed to Bb s.l. and that TBEV infection occurred at least in one of the investigated zoos. Considering the pathogenic potential of these two tick-borne pathogens, clinical and serological monitoring should be continued, and therapeutic and preventive measures should be taken when necessary.

  13. Survey of Ticks Collected from Tennessee Cattle and Their Pastures for Anaplasma and Ehrlichia Species.

    PubMed

    Pompo, K; Mays, S; Wesselman, C; Paulsen, D J; Fryxell, R T Trout

    2016-02-01

    Anaplasma marginale is the causative agent for bovine anaplasmosis (BA) and Ehrlichia ruminantium is the causative agent for heartwater, 2 devastating diseases of cattle. BA is common in the United States and frequently reported in western Tennessee cattle; however, cases of heartwater are not yet established in the continental United States. Because both pathogens are transmitted via the bites of infected ticks, the objective of this study was to survey cattle and pastures for ticks and for each pathogen. University of Tennessee AgResearch has 7 research and education centers (REC) located throughout the state at which they manage cattle. Ticks were collected from selected cattle (every fourth to sixth animal) and pastures (via dragging) associated with the herd from each REC during the summer of 2013. A total of 512 ticks were collected from cattle (n = 386) and pastures (n = 126) and were PCR-screened for Anaplasma and Ehrlichia using genus-specific primers. Collections consisted of 398 (77.7%) Amblyomma americanum, 84 (16.4%) Amblyomma maculatum, and 30 (5.9%) Dermacentor variabilis. Ticks were not recovered from pastures or cattle east of the Tennessee Plateau. The North American vectors for An. marginale and E. ruminantium were identified (D. variabilis and A. maculatum, respectively), but neither pathogen was recovered. A large proportion of ticks were collected from cattle and, of these, a majority were attached to their host (compared to questing on their host or engorged on the host). Four A. americanum were positive for Ehrlichia spp. (Ehrlichia ewingii, Ehrlichia chaffeensis, and Panola Mountain Ehrlichia), all in western Tennessee. With the identification of a few Ehrlichia infections in cattle-associated ticks and current A. marginale rates in Tennessee beef cattle nearing 11%, additional research is needed to establish baseline tick, Anaplasma, and Ehrlichia data for future management studies.

  14. Population dynamics of ticks infesting the one-humped camel (Camelus dromedarius) in central Tunisia.

    PubMed

    Gharbi, Mohamed; Moussi, Nawfel; Jedidi, Mohamed; Mhadhbi, Moez; Sassi, Limam; Darghouth, Mohamed Aziz

    2013-12-01

    A tick population was monitored on 30 camels (Camelus dromedarius) over one year in Kairouan region, Central Tunisia. A total of 1630 ticks was collected and identified resulting in an estimate of different parasitological indicators. The ticks belonged to 2 genera and 5 species: Hyalomma impeltatum (53%) and Hyalomma dromedarii (45%) were the dominant species followed by Hyalomma excavatum (1%), Hyalomma marginatum (0.5%), and Rhipicephalus turanicus (0.5%) (p<0.001). Mean infestation prevalence was 90.6%; all the animals were infested by at least one tick from May to September. The highest mean prevalence was observed in H. impeltatum (60%), the lowest was reported in R. turanicus (0.03%) (p<0.05). Mean overall intensity of infestation was 4.4 ticks/animal. The highest mean intensity was observed in H. impeltatum (2.7 ticks/animal). Overall mean abundance of ticks was 4.4 ticks/animal. Different abiotic factors, namely monthly mean minimum and monthly mean maximum temperatures and the number of sunny days were positively correlated with overall monthly tick burdens which were in turn negatively correlated with the monthly mean relative humidity. This is the first study on camel tick dynamics in Tunisia.

  15. Rickettsia infection in Amblyomma tonelliae, a tick species from the Amblyomma cajennense complex.

    PubMed

    Tarragona, Evelina L; Cicuttin, Gabriel L; Mangold, Atilio J; Mastropaolo, Mariano; Nazarena De Salvo, M; Nava, Santiago

    2015-03-01

    The present study was performed to evaluate the Rickettsia infection in Amblyomma tonelliae ticks from Argentina. All ticks were subjected to DNA extraction and tested by a battery of PCRs to amplify fragments of four rickettsial genes, 23S-5S, gltA, ompA and htrA. Two ticks were positive. The Rickettsia detected in one tick represents a new lineage which is named Rickettsia sp. strain El Tunal. This new strain belongs to the canadensis group because it is closely related to Rickettsia monteiroi, Rickettsia canadensis and Candidatus "Rickettsia tarasevichiae". They clustered together on a high supported clade with both gltA and htrA genes. The other positive tick was infected with Candidatus "Rickettsia amblyommii". The results presented in this study constitute the first records of Rickettsia infection in A. tonelliae ticks. However, the medical relevance of these findings should be considered cautiously because the pathogenicity of Rickettsia sp. strain El Tunal and Candidatus "R. amblyommii" remains undetermined.

  16. Habitat and Vegetation Variables Are Not Enough When Predicting Tick Populations in the Southeastern United States

    PubMed Central

    Trout Fryxell, R. T.; Moore, J. E.; Collins, M. D.; Kwon, Y.; Jean-Philippe, S. R.; Schaeffer, S. M.; Odoi, A.; Kennedy, M.; Houston, A. E.

    2015-01-01

    Two tick-borne diseases with expanding case and vector distributions are ehrlichiosis (transmitted by Amblyomma americanum) and rickettiosis (transmitted by A. maculatum and Dermacentor variabilis). There is a critical need to identify the specific habitats where each of these species is likely to be encountered to classify and pinpoint risk areas. Consequently, an in-depth tick prevalence study was conducted on the dominant ticks in the southeast. Vegetation, soil, and remote sensing data were used to test the hypothesis that habitat and vegetation variables can predict tick abundances. No variables were significant predictors of A. americanum adult and nymph tick abundance, and no clustering was evident because this species was found throughout the study area. For A. maculatum adult tick abundance was predicted by NDVI and by the interaction between habitat type and plant diversity; two significant population clusters were identified in a heterogeneous area suitable for quail habitat. For D. variabilis no environmental variables were significant predictors of adult abundance; however, D. variabilis collections clustered in three significant areas best described as agriculture areas with defined edges. This study identified few landscape and vegetation variables associated with tick presence. While some variables were significantly associated with tick populations, the amount of explained variation was not useful for predicting reliably where ticks occur; consequently, additional research that includes multiple sampling seasons and locations throughout the southeast are warranted. This low amount of explained variation may also be due to the use of hosts for dispersal, and potentially to other abiotic and biotic variables. Host species play a large role in the establishment, maintenance, and dispersal of a tick species, as well as the maintenance of disease cycles, dispersal to new areas, and identification of risk areas. PMID:26656122

  17. Habitat and Vegetation Variables Are Not Enough When Predicting Tick Populations in the Southeastern United States.

    PubMed

    Trout Fryxell, R T; Moore, J E; Collins, M D; Kwon, Y; Jean-Philippe, S R; Schaeffer, S M; Odoi, A; Kennedy, M; Houston, A E

    2015-01-01

    Two tick-borne diseases with expanding case and vector distributions are ehrlichiosis (transmitted by Amblyomma americanum) and rickettiosis (transmitted by A. maculatum and Dermacentor variabilis). There is a critical need to identify the specific habitats where each of these species is likely to be encountered to classify and pinpoint risk areas. Consequently, an in-depth tick prevalence study was conducted on the dominant ticks in the southeast. Vegetation, soil, and remote sensing data were used to test the hypothesis that habitat and vegetation variables can predict tick abundances. No variables were significant predictors of A. americanum adult and nymph tick abundance, and no clustering was evident because this species was found throughout the study area. For A. maculatum adult tick abundance was predicted by NDVI and by the interaction between habitat type and plant diversity; two significant population clusters were identified in a heterogeneous area suitable for quail habitat. For D. variabilis no environmental variables were significant predictors of adult abundance; however, D. variabilis collections clustered in three significant areas best described as agriculture areas with defined edges. This study identified few landscape and vegetation variables associated with tick presence. While some variables were significantly associated with tick populations, the amount of explained variation was not useful for predicting reliably where ticks occur; consequently, additional research that includes multiple sampling seasons and locations throughout the southeast are warranted. This low amount of explained variation may also be due to the use of hosts for dispersal, and potentially to other abiotic and biotic variables. Host species play a large role in the establishment, maintenance, and dispersal of a tick species, as well as the maintenance of disease cycles, dispersal to new areas, and identification of risk areas.

  18. Species composition and abundance of Brevipalpus spp. on different citrus species in Mexican orchards.

    PubMed

    Salinas-Vargas, D; Santillán-Galicia, M T; Valdez-Carrasco, J; Mora-Aguilera, G; Atanacio-Serrano, Y; Romero-Pescador, P

    2013-08-01

    We studied the abundance of Brevipalpus spp. in citrus orchards in the Mexican states of Yucatan, Quintana Roo and Campeche. Mites were collected from 100 trees containing a mixture of citrus species where sweet orange was always the main species. Eight collections were made at each location from February 2010 to February 2011. Mites from the genus Brevipalpus were separated from other mites surveyed and their abundance and relationships with the different citrus species were quantified throughout the collection period. A subsample of 25% of the total Brevipalpus mites collected were identified to species level and the interaction of mite species and citrus species were described. Brevipalpus spp. were present on all collection dates and their relative abundance was similar on all citrus species studies. The smallest number of mites collected was during the rainy season. Brevipalpus phoenicis (Geijskes) and Brevipalpus californicus (Banks) were the only two species present and they were found in all locations except Campeche, where only B. phoenicis was present. Yucatan and Campeche are at greater risk of leprosis virus transmission than Quintana Roo because the main vector, B. phoenicis, was more abundant than B. californicus. The implications of our results for the design of more accurate sampling and control methods for Brevipalpus spp. are discussed. PMID:23949863

  19. Community structure influences species' abundance along environmental gradients.

    PubMed

    Eloranta, Antti P; Helland, Ingeborg P; Sandlund, Odd T; Hesthagen, Trygve; Ugedal, Ola; Finstad, Anders G

    2016-01-01

    Species' response to abiotic environmental variation can be influenced by local community structure and interspecific interactions, particularly in restricted habitats such as islands and lakes. In temperate lakes, future increase in water temperature and run-off of terrestrial (allochthonous) dissolved organic carbon (DOC) are predicted to alter community composition and the overall ecosystem productivity. However, little is known about how the present community structure and abiotic environmental variation interact to affect the abundance of native fish populations. We used a space-for-time approach to study how local community structure interact with lake morphometric and climatic characteristics (i.e. temperature and catchment productivity) to affect brown trout (Salmo trutta L.) yield in 283 Norwegian lakes located in different biogeographical regions. Brown trout yield (based on data from standardized survey gill net fishing; g 100 m(-2) gill net night(-1)) was generally lower in lakes where other fish species were present than in lakes with brown trout only. The yield showed an overall negative relationship with increasing temperature and a positive relationship with lake shoreline complexity. Brown trout yield was also negatively correlated with DOC load (measured using Normalized Difference Vegetation Index as a proxy) and lake size and depth (measured using terrain slope as a proxy), but only in lakes where other fish species were present. The observed negative response of brown trout yield to increasing DOC load and proportion of the pelagic open-water area is likely due to restricted (littoral) niche availability and competitive dominance of more pelagic fishes such as Arctic charr (Salvelinus alpinus (L.)). Our study highlights that, through competitive interactions, the local community structure can influence the response of a species' abundance to variation in abiotic conditions. Changes in biomass and niche use of top predators (such as the brown

  20. Analyzing fractal property of species abundance distribution and diversity indexes.

    PubMed

    Su, Qiang

    2016-03-01

    Community diversity is usually characterized by numerical indexes; however it indeed depends on the species abundance distribution (SAD). Diversity indexes and SAD are based on the same information but treating as separate themes. Ranking species abundance from largest to smallest, the decreasing pattern can give the information about the SAD. Frontier proposed such SAD might be a fractal structure, and first applied the Zipf-Mandelbrot model to the SAD study. However, this model fails to include the Zipf model, and also fails to ensure an integer rank. In this study, a fractal model of SAD was reconstructed, and tested with 104 community samples from 8 taxonomic groups. The results show that there was a good fit of the presented model. Fractal parameter (p) determines the SAD of a community. The ecological significance of p relates to the "dominance" of a community. The correlation between p and classical diversity indexes show that Shannon index decreases and Simpson index increases as p increases. The main purpose of this paper is not to compare with other SADs models; it simply provides a new interpretation of SAD model construction, and preliminarily integrates diversity indexes and SAD model into a broader perspective of community diversity. PMID:26746388

  1. Metagenomic abundance estimation and diagnostic testing on species level

    PubMed Central

    Lindner, Martin S.; Renard, Bernhard Y.

    2013-01-01

    One goal of sequencing-based metagenomic community analysis is the quantitative taxonomic assessment of microbial community compositions. In particular, relative quantification of taxons is of high relevance for metagenomic diagnostics or microbial community comparison. However, the majority of existing approaches quantify at low resolution (e.g. at phylum level), rely on the existence of special genes (e.g. 16S), or have severe problems discerning species with highly similar genome sequences. Yet, problems as metagenomic diagnostics require accurate quantification on species level. We developed Genome Abundance Similarity Correction (GASiC), a method to estimate true genome abundances via read alignment by considering reference genome similarities in a non-negative LASSO approach. We demonstrate GASiC’s superior performance over existing methods on simulated benchmark data as well as on real data. In addition, we present applications to datasets of both bacterial DNA and viral RNA source. We further discuss our approach as an alternative to PCR-based DNA quantification. PMID:22941661

  2. Analyzing fractal property of species abundance distribution and diversity indexes.

    PubMed

    Su, Qiang

    2016-03-01

    Community diversity is usually characterized by numerical indexes; however it indeed depends on the species abundance distribution (SAD). Diversity indexes and SAD are based on the same information but treating as separate themes. Ranking species abundance from largest to smallest, the decreasing pattern can give the information about the SAD. Frontier proposed such SAD might be a fractal structure, and first applied the Zipf-Mandelbrot model to the SAD study. However, this model fails to include the Zipf model, and also fails to ensure an integer rank. In this study, a fractal model of SAD was reconstructed, and tested with 104 community samples from 8 taxonomic groups. The results show that there was a good fit of the presented model. Fractal parameter (p) determines the SAD of a community. The ecological significance of p relates to the "dominance" of a community. The correlation between p and classical diversity indexes show that Shannon index decreases and Simpson index increases as p increases. The main purpose of this paper is not to compare with other SADs models; it simply provides a new interpretation of SAD model construction, and preliminarily integrates diversity indexes and SAD model into a broader perspective of community diversity.

  3. Ticks collected from humans, domestic animals, and wildlife in Yucatan, Mexico.

    PubMed

    Rodríguez-Vivas, R I; Apanaskevich, D A; Ojeda-Chi, M M; Trinidad-Martínez, I; Reyes-Novelo, E; Esteve-Gassent, M D; Pérez de León, A A

    2016-01-15

    Domestic animals and wildlife play important roles as reservoirs of zoonotic pathogens that are transmitted to humans by ticks. Besides their role as vectors of several classes of microorganisms of veterinary and public health relevance, ticks also burden human and animal populations through their obligate blood-feeding habit. It is estimated that in Mexico there are around 100 tick species belonging to the Ixodidae and Argasidae families. Information is lacking on tick species that affect humans, domestic animals, and wildlife through their life cycle. This study was conducted to bridge that knowledge gap by inventorying tick species that infest humans, domestic animals and wildlife in the State of Yucatan, Mexico. Amblyomma ticks were observed as euryxenous vertebrate parasites because they were found parasitizing 17 animal species and human. Amblyomma mixtum was the most eryxenous species found in 11 different animal species and humans. Both A. mixtum and A. parvum were found parasitizing humans. Ixodes near affinis was the second most abundant species parasitizing six animal species (dogs, cats, horses, white-nosed coati, white-tail deer and black vulture) and was found widely across the State of Yucatan. Ixodid tick populations may increase in the State of Yucatan with time due to animal production intensification, an increasing wildlife population near rural communities because of natural habitat reduction and fragmentation. The diversity of ticks across host taxa documented here highlights the relevance of ecological information to understand tick-host dynamics. This knowledge is critical to inform public health and veterinary programs for the sustainable control of ticks and tick-borne diseases.

  4. Ticks collected from humans, domestic animals, and wildlife in Yucatan, Mexico.

    PubMed

    Rodríguez-Vivas, R I; Apanaskevich, D A; Ojeda-Chi, M M; Trinidad-Martínez, I; Reyes-Novelo, E; Esteve-Gassent, M D; Pérez de León, A A

    2016-01-15

    Domestic animals and wildlife play important roles as reservoirs of zoonotic pathogens that are transmitted to humans by ticks. Besides their role as vectors of several classes of microorganisms of veterinary and public health relevance, ticks also burden human and animal populations through their obligate blood-feeding habit. It is estimated that in Mexico there are around 100 tick species belonging to the Ixodidae and Argasidae families. Information is lacking on tick species that affect humans, domestic animals, and wildlife through their life cycle. This study was conducted to bridge that knowledge gap by inventorying tick species that infest humans, domestic animals and wildlife in the State of Yucatan, Mexico. Amblyomma ticks were observed as euryxenous vertebrate parasites because they were found parasitizing 17 animal species and human. Amblyomma mixtum was the most eryxenous species found in 11 different animal species and humans. Both A. mixtum and A. parvum were found parasitizing humans. Ixodes near affinis was the second most abundant species parasitizing six animal species (dogs, cats, horses, white-nosed coati, white-tail deer and black vulture) and was found widely across the State of Yucatan. Ixodid tick populations may increase in the State of Yucatan with time due to animal production intensification, an increasing wildlife population near rural communities because of natural habitat reduction and fragmentation. The diversity of ticks across host taxa documented here highlights the relevance of ecological information to understand tick-host dynamics. This knowledge is critical to inform public health and veterinary programs for the sustainable control of ticks and tick-borne diseases. PMID:26790745

  5. Evaluation of the speed of kill of sarolaner (Simparica™) against induced infestations of three species of ticks (Amblyomma maculatum, Ixodes scapularis, Ixodes ricinus) on dogs.

    PubMed

    Six, Robert H; Geurden, Thomas; Carter, Lori; Everett, William R; McLoughlin, A; Mahabir, Sean P; Myers, Melanie R; Slootmans, Nathalie

    2016-05-30

    The rapid speed of kill of sarolaner (Simparica™, Zoetis), a novel isoxazoline compound, was demonstrated against three tick species known to infest dogs in Europe or the United States. Efficacy was measured against an existing infestation and against subsequent weekly re-infestations for 35 days after treatment. Dogs were randomly allocated to treatment with a single oral dose of either placebo or sarolaner (2mg/kg) based on pre-treatment host-suitability tick counts. Dogs were infested with approximately 50 unfed adult Ixodes scapularis, Ixodes ricinus or Amblyomma maculatum ticks on Days-2, 7, 14, 21, 28 and 35. Tick counts were conducted at 4 (I. scapularis only), 8, 12 and 24h after treatment on Day 0 and after each subsequent re-infestation. No treatment-related adverse reactions occurred during any of these studies. Dogs in the placebo-treated groups maintained adequate tick infestations (recovery of 20-70% of applied ticks) throughout the duration of the studies. Following treatment, live tick counts were significantly reduced relative to placebo at the 8h post treatment counts indicating that sarolaner started killing existing infestations of ticks rapidly after treatment. Efficacy was 90.1% against I. ricinus, 98.8% against I. scapularis, and 99.2% against A. maculatum within 12h, and 100% efficacy was achieved at 24h after treatment against all three tick species. This speed of kill was maintained throughout the month with ≥95.7%, ≥98.7% and ≥89.6% efficacy against I. scapularis, I. ricinus, and A. maculatum, respectively, at 24h after re-infestation at least through Day 28. PMID:26928659

  6. Comparative analysis of the roles of Ixodes persulcatus and I. trianguliceps ticks in natural foci of ixodid tick-borne borrelioses in the Middle Urals, Russia.

    PubMed

    Korenberg, Edward I; Kovalevskii, Yurii V; Gorelova, Natalya B; Nefedova, Valentina V

    2015-04-01

    Long-term studies on natural foci of ixodid tick-borne borrelioses (ITBB) have been performed in Chusovskoi district of Perm region, the Middle Urals, where the vectors of these infections are represented by two ixodid tick species: the taiga tick Ixodes persulcatus and many times less abundant vole tick I. trianguliceps. Over 10 years, more than 6000 half-engorged ticks were collected from small forest mammals using the standard procedure, and 1027 I. persulcatus and 1142 I. trianguliceps ticks, individually or in pools, were used to inoculate BSK-2 medium. As a result, 199 Borrelia isolates were obtained. Among them, 177 isolates were identified, and the rrf(5S)-rrl(23S) intergenic spacer sequence was determined in 57 isolates. The prevalence of Borrelia infection in I. persulcatus larvae and nymphs averaged 31.0 and 53.3%, while that in I. trianguliceps larvae, nymphs, and adult ticks was five to ten times lower: 2.6, 10.2, and 8.1%, respectively. Each of the two tick species was found to carry both ITBB agents circulating in the Middle Ural foci (Borrelia garinii and B. afzelii), but the set of genogroups and genovariants of these spirochetes in I. trianguliceps proved to be far less diverse. According to the available data, this tick, compared to I. persulcatus, is generally less susceptible to Borrelia infection (especially by B. afzelii). Taking into account of its relatively low abundance, it appears that I. trianguliceps cannot seriously influence the course of epizootic process in ITBB foci of the study region, whereas highly abundant I. persulcatus with the high level of Borrelia infection is obviously a key component of these parasitic systems. A similar situation may well be typical for the entire geographic range shared by the two tick species. PMID:25843812

  7. [The absolute and relative abundance of imagoes of the taiga tick (Ixodidae) in the dark coniferous-deciduous valley forests of the northwestern spurs of the eastern Sayan].

    PubMed

    Korotkov, Iu S; Kislenko, G S

    1994-01-01

    Additions to the method of estimating the absolute and relative numbers of the pasture ticks in test areas are proposed. Additions take in attention the influence of ticks immigrating to the test area in dependence upon the isolation rate of that area. It has been stated that in the period 1987-1991 the mean relative number of I. persulcatus (mean tick number per 1 flag-kilometer of three decades) was 48, 27, 57, 29 and 38; the absolute tick number on test area (tick number per 1 hectare)--1590, 691, 1194, 641 and 668; the absolute tick number near the field station--1402, 647, 1496, 668 and 1108 respectively.

  8. Effect of prescribed fire for tick control in California chaparral.

    PubMed

    Padgett, K A; Casher, L E; Stephens, S L; Lane, R S

    2009-09-01

    Prescribed fire was investigated as a method for controlling ixodid and argasid ticks in chaparral habitats in northern California. Two experimental and two adjacent control plots within a wildlife preserve were monitored for 1 yr postburn. Ticks were collected by flagging vegetation, by CO2-baited pitfall trap, and by live-trapping rodents. Twice as many rodents were caught at control sites compared with burn sites and no dusky-footed woodrats, Neotoma fuscipes Baird, were found in the treatment sites postburn. This species is known to be a reservoir of the agents of Lyme disease, Borrelia burgdorferi sensu stricto Johnson, Schmid, Hyde, Steigerwalt & Brenner, and human granulocytic anaplasmosis, Anaplasma phagocytophilum Dumler, Barbet, Bekker, Dasch, Palmer, Ray, Rikihisa, Rurangirwa. Six ixodid tick species were removed from rodents (Ixodes pacificus Cooley & Kohls, Ixodes jellisoni Cooley & Kohls, Ixodes spinipalpis Hadwen & Nuttall, Ixodes woodi Bishopp, Dermacentor occidentalis Marx, and Dermacentor parumapertus Neumann), two of which transmit bacterial zoonotic agents to people in the far-western United States. There was no decrease in number of ticks per animal trapped at either burn site compared with controls; in fact, the mean number of immature I. pacificus per rodent was significantly higher at one burn site than its control site. Soil refugia may protect ticks from fire-induced mortality; the argasid tick Ornithodoros coriaceus Koch, which lives in soil, was unaffected by the prescribed fire as were I. pacificus and D. occidentalis buried in packets 2.5 cm below ground. We conclude that although prescribed fires in chaparral habitats may diminish local rodent abundance, it does not decrease tick loads on rodents. Furthermore, burning chaparral does not result in a decreased abundance of adult ixodid ticks on vegetation and apparently does not affect argasid or ixodid ticks that are sheltered within soil refugia.

  9. SPECIES-ABUNDANCE-BIOMASS RESPONSES BY ESTUARINE MACROBENTHOS TO SEDIMENT CHEMICAL CONTAMINATION.

    EPA Science Inventory

    Macrobenthic community responses can be measured through concerted changes in univariate metrics, including species richness, total abundance, and total biomass. The classic model of pollution effects on marine macroinvertebrate communities recognizes that species/abundance/bioma...

  10. Fuel breaks affect nonnative species abundance in Californian plant communities

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Merriam, K.E.; Keeley, J.E.; Beyers, J.L.

    2006-01-01

    We evaluated the abundance of nonnative plants on fuel breaks and in adjacent untreated areas to determine if fuel treatments promote the invasion of nonnative plant species. Understanding the relationship between fuel treatments and nonnative plants is becoming increasingly important as federal and state agencies are currently implementing large fuel treatment programs throughout the United States to reduce the threat of wildland fire. Our study included 24 fuel breaks located across the State of California. We found that nonnative plant abundance was over 200% higher on fuel breaks than in adjacent wildland areas. Relative nonnative cover was greater on fuel breaks constructed by bulldozers (28%) than on fuel breaks constructed by other methods (7%). Canopy cover, litter cover, and duff depth also were significantly lower on fuel breaks constructed by bulldozers, and these fuel breaks had significantly more exposed bare ground than other types of fuel breaks. There was a significant decline in relative nonnative cover with increasing distance from the fuel break, particularly in areas that had experienced more numerous fires during the past 50 years, and in areas that had been grazed. These data suggest that fuel breaks could provide establishment sites for nonnative plants, and that nonnatives may invade surrounding areas, especially after disturbances such as fire or grazing. Fuel break construction and maintenance methods that leave some overstory canopy and minimize exposure of bare ground may be less likely to promote nonnative plants. ?? 2006 by the Ecological Society of America.

  11. Astrochem: Abundances of chemical species in the interstellar medium

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Maret, Sébastien; Bergin, Edwin A.

    2015-07-01

    Astrochem computes the abundances of chemical species in the interstellar medium, as function of time. It studies the chemistry in a variety of astronomical objects, including diffuse clouds, dense clouds, photodissociation regions, prestellar cores, protostars, and protostellar disks. Astrochem reads a network of chemical reactions from a text file, builds up a system of kinetic rates equations, and solves it using a state-of-the-art stiff ordinary differential equation (ODE) solver. The Jacobian matrix of the system is computed implicitly, so the resolution of the system is extremely fast: large networks containing several thousands of reactions are usually solved in a few seconds. A variety of gas phase process are considered, as well as simple gas-grain interactions, such as the freeze-out and the desorption via several mechanisms (thermal desorption, cosmic-ray desorption and photo-desorption). The computed abundances are written in a HDF5 file, and can be plotted in different ways with the tools provided with Astrochem. Chemical reactions and their rates are written in a format which is meant to be easy to read and to edit. A tool to convert the chemical networks from the OSU and KIDA databases into this format is also provided. Astrochem is written in C, and its source code is distributed under the terms of the GNU General Public License (GPL).

  12. Developing Anti-tick Vaccines.

    PubMed

    Rodríguez-Mallon, Alina

    2016-01-01

    Ticks are responsible for the transmission of viral, bacterial, and protozoal diseases of man and animals and also produce significant economic losses to cattle industry. The use of acaricides constitutes a major component of integrated tick control strategies. However, this is accompanied by the selection of acaricide-resistant ticks and contamination of environment and milk and meat products with drug residues. These issues highlight the need for alternative approaches to control tick infestations and have triggered the search for tick protective antigens for vaccine development. Vaccination as a tick control method has been practiced since the introduction of TickGARD and Gavac that were developed using the midgut glycoprotein Bm86 as antigen. Gavac within integrated tick management systems has proven to reduce the number of acaricidal applications per year that are required to control some strains of R. microplus ticks in different geographical regions. Nevertheless, it has limited or no efficacy against other tick species. These issues have stimulated research for additional tick protective antigens with critical functions in the tick. This chapter presents methodologies for the design and test of molecules as antigens against ticks. Considerations about different methods for the tick control compared to the immunological methods, the desirable characteristics for an anti-tick vaccine and the obstacles encountered for developing this kind of vaccines are discussed. Detailed methodologies for the establishment of a biological model to test new molecules as immunogens against ticks and to perform challenge trials with this model are presented. General considerations in the efficacy calculation for any anti-tick vaccine are also discussed. PMID:27076303

  13. Tick removal.

    PubMed

    Roupakias, S; Mitsakou, P; Nimer, A Al

    2011-03-01

    Ticks are blood feeding external parasites which can cause local and systemic complications to human body. A lot of tick-borne human diseases include Lyme disease and virus encephalitis, can be transmitted by a tick bite. Also secondary bacterial skin infection, reactive manifestations against tick allergens, and granuloma's formation can be occurred. Tick paralysis is a relatively rare complication but it can be fatal. Except the general rules for tick bite prevention, any tick found should be immediately and completely removed alive. Furthermore, the tick removal technique should not allow or provoke the escape of infective body fluids through the tick into the wound site, and disclose any local complication. Many methods of tick removal (a lot of them are unsatisfactory and/or dangerous) have been reported in the literature, but there is very limited experimental evidence to support these methods. No technique will remove completely every tick. So, there is not an appropriate and absolutely effective and/or safe tick removal technique. Regardless of the used tick removal technique, clinicians should be aware of the clinical signs of tick-transmitted diseases, the public should be informed about the risks and the prevention of tick borne diseases, and persons who have undergone tick removal should be monitored up to 30 days for signs and symptoms. PMID:21710824

  14. Rickettsiaceae and Anaplasmataceae infections in Ixodes ricinus ticks from urban and natural forested areas of Poland

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background Ixodes ricinus is a major vector for a range of microbial pathogens and the most prevalent and widely distributed tick species on the European continent, occurring in both natural and urban habitats. Nevertheless, little is known about the relative density of ticks in these two ecologically distinct habitats and the diversity of tick-borne pathogens that they carry. Methods We compared densities of questing I. ricinus nymphs and adults in urban and natural habitats in Central and Northeastern Poland, assessed the prevalence and rate of co-infection with A. phagocytophilum, Rickettsia, Ehrlichia and ‘Ca. Neoehrlichia spp.’ in ticks, and compared the diversity of tick-borne pathogens using molecular assays (PCR). Results Of the 1325 adults and nymphs, 6.2% were infected with at least one pathogen, with 4.4%, 1.7% and less than 0.5% being positive for the DNA of Rickettsia spp., A. phagocytophilum, Ehrlichia spp. and Ca. N. mikurensis, respectively. Although tick abundance was higher in natural habitats, the prevalence of the majority of pathogens was higher in urban forested areas. Conclusion We conclude that: (i) zoonotic genetic variants of A. phagocytophilum are widely distributed in the Polish tick population, (ii) although the diversity of tick borne pathogens was higher in natural habitats, zoonotic species/strains were detected only in urban forests, (iii) and we provide the first description of Ca. N. mikurensis infections in ticks in Poland. PMID:24661311

  15. Parasites of domestic and wild animals in South Africa. XXII. Ixodid ticks on domestic dogs and on wild carnivores.

    PubMed

    Horak, I G; Guillarmod, A J; Moolman, L C; de Vos, V

    1987-12-01

    Ixodid ticks were collected from 4 dogs on smallholdings near Grahamstown, eastern Cape Province, on 1 or more occasions each week for periods ranging from 9-36 months. Fourteen tick species were recovered and the seasonal abundance of adult Haemaphysalis leachi and adult Rhipicephalus simus was determined. Complete collections of ticks were made from 50 caracals (Felis caracal) in the Cradock, Graaff-Reinet and Southwell regions in the eastern Cape Province. The animals from Cradock and Graaff-Reinet harboured 13 ixodid tick species. The caracals from Southwell were infested with 11 tick species and the seasonal abundance of Ixodes pilosus on these animals was determined. A small-spotted genet (Genetta genetta), 1 bat-eared fox (Otocyon megalotis), 1 aardwolf (Proteles cristatus) and 6 black-backed jackal (Canis mesomelas) from various localities in the eastern Cape Province were examined for ticks and 9 species were collected. Complete tick collections were made from a side-striped jackal (Canis adustus), 2 wild dogs (Lycaon pictus), a spotted hyaena (Crocuta crocuta), a several (Felis serval), 2 African civets (Civettictis civetta), 2 leopards (Panthera pardus) and a lion (Panthera leo) in the Kruger National Park in the north-eastern Transvaal. Twelve ixodid tick specis were recovered from these animals.

  16. Daughter Species Abundances in Comet C/2014 Q2 (Lovejoy)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    McKay, Adam; Cochran, Anita; Dello Russo, Neil; Kelley, Michael

    2015-11-01

    We present analysis of high spectral resolution optical spectra of C/2014 Q2 (Lovejoy) acquired with the Tull Coude spectrometer on the 2.7-meter Harlan J. Smith Telescope at McDonald Observatory and the ARCES spectrometer mounted on the 3.5-meter Astrophysical Research Consortium Telescope at Apache Point Observatory. Both Tull Coude and ARCES provide high spectral resolution (R=30,000-60,000) and a large spectral range of approximately 3500-10000 Angstroms. We obtained two observation epochs, one in February 2015 at a heliocentric distance of 1.3 AU, and another in May 2015 at a heliocentric distance of 1.9 AU. Another epoch in late August 2015 at a heliocentric distance of 3.0 AU is scheduled. We will present production rates of the daughter species CN, C3, CH, C2, and NH2. We will also present H2O production rates derived from the [OI]6300 emission, as well as measurements of the flux ratio of the [OI]5577 Angstrom line to the sum of the [OI]6300 and [OI]6364 Angstrom lines (sometimes referred to as the oxygen line ratio). This ratio is indicative of the CO2 abundance of the comet. As we have observations at several heliocentric distances, we will examine how production rates and mixing ratios of the various species change with heliocentric distance. We will compare our oxygen line measurements to observations of CO2 made with Spitzer, as well as our other daughter species observations to those of candidate parent molecules made at IR wavelengths.

  17. Nellore cattle (Bos indicus) and ticks within the Brazilian Pantanal: ecological relationships.

    PubMed

    Ramos, Vanessa N; Piovezan, Ubiratan; Franco, Ana Helena A; Rodrigues, Vinicius S; Nava, Santiago; Szabó, Matias P J

    2016-02-01

    Pantanal is a huge floodplain mostly in Brazil, and its main economic activity is extensive cattle raising, in farms characterized by an extremely wildlife-rich environment. We herein describe tick infestations of cattle and of the natural environment in Pantanal of Nhecolândia in Brazil, at areas with and without cattle during both dry and wet seasons. Environmental sampling resulted in three tick species: Amblyomma sculptum (423 nymphs and 518 adults), Amblyomma parvum (7 nymphs and 129 adults), Amblyomma ovale (3 adults) as well as three clusters and two individuals of Amblyomma sp. larvae. A significantly higher number of adult A. sculptum ticks was found in areas with cattle in the wet season. From 106 examinations of bovines 1710 ticks from three species were collected: Rhipicephalus microplus (55.7% of the total), A. sculptum (38%) and A. parvum (4.1%), as well as 32 Amblyomma sp. larvae. A significant similarity was found between Amblyomma tick fauna from environment and on cattle during both seasons. All A. sculptum females on bovines were flat whereas many of A. parvum females and A. sculptum nymphs were engorging. Although R. microplus was the most abundant tick species on cattle, overall highest tick prevalence on bovines in the dry season was of A. sculptum nymphs. Lack of R. microplus in environmental sampling, relationship between cattle and increase in adult A. sculptum numbers in the environment as well as suitability of bovine for the various tick species are discussed.

  18. A MODEST MODEL EXPLAINS THE DISTRIBUTION AND ABUNDANCE OF BORRELIA BURGDORFERI STRAINS

    PubMed Central

    BRISSON, DUSTIN; DYKHUIZEN, DANIEL E.

    2006-01-01

    The distribution and abundance of Borrelia burgdorferi, including human Lyme disease strains, is a function of its interactions with vertebrate species. We present a mathematical model describing important ecologic interactions affecting the distribution and abundance of B. burgdorferi strains, marked by the allele at the outer surface protein C locus, in Ixodes scapularis ticks, the principal vector. The frequency of each strain in ticks can be explained by the vertebrate species composition, the density of each vertebrate species, the number of ticks that feed on individuals of each species, and the rate at which those ticks acquire different strain. The model results are consistent with empirical data collected in a major Lyme disease focus in New England. An applicable extension of these results would be to predict the proportion of ticks carrying human infectious strains of B. burgdorferi from disease host densities and thus predict the local risk of contracting Lyme disease. PMID:16606995

  19. Abundance changes and habitat availability drive species' responses to climate change

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mair, Louise; Hill, Jane K.; Fox, Richard; Botham, Marc; Brereton, Tom; Thomas, Chris D.

    2014-02-01

    There is little consensus as to why there is so much variation in the rates at which different species' geographic ranges expand in response to climate warming. Here we show that the relative importance of species' abundance trends and habitat availability for British butterfly species vary over time. Species with high habitat availability expanded more rapidly from the 1970s to mid-1990s, when abundances were generally stable, whereas habitat availability effects were confined to the subset of species with stable abundances from the mid-1990s to 2009, when abundance trends were generally declining. This suggests that stable (or positive) abundance trends are a prerequisite for range expansion. Given that species' abundance trends vary over time for non-climatic as well as climatic reasons, assessment of abundance trends will help improve predictions of species' responses to climate change, and help us to understand the likely success of different conservation strategies for facilitating their expansions.

  20. Predicting the species abundance distribution using a model food web.

    PubMed

    Powell, Craig R; McKane, Alan J

    2008-12-21

    A large number of models of the species abundance distribution (SAD) have been proposed, many of which are generically similar to the log-normal distribution, from which they are often indistinguishable when describing a given data set. Ecological data sets are necessarily incomplete samples of an ecosystem, subject to statistical noise, and cannot readily be combined to yield a closer approximation to the underlying distribution. In this paper, we adopt the Webworld ecosystem model to study the predicted SAD in detail. The Webworld model is complex, and does not allow analytic examination of such features; rather, we use simulation data and an approach similar to that of ecologists analysing empirical data. By examining large sets of fully described data we are able to resolve features which can distinguish between models but which have not been investigated in detail in field data. We find that the power-law normal distribution is superior to both the log-normal and logit-normal distributions, and that the data can improve on even this at the high-population cut-off.

  1. Commonly rare and rarely common: comparing population abundance of invasive and native aquatic species.

    PubMed

    Hansen, Gretchen J A; Vander Zanden, M Jake; Blum, Michael J; Clayton, Murray K; Hain, Ernie F; Hauxwell, Jennifer; Izzo, Marit; Kornis, Matthew S; McIntyre, Peter B; Mikulyuk, Alison; Nilsson, Erika; Olden, Julian D; Papeş, Monica; Sharma, Sapna

    2013-01-01

    Invasive species are leading drivers of environmental change. Their impacts are often linked to their population size, but surprisingly little is known about how frequently they achieve high abundances. A nearly universal pattern in ecology is that species are rare in most locations and abundant in a few, generating right-skewed abundance distributions. Here, we use abundance data from over 24,000 populations of 17 invasive and 104 native aquatic species to test whether invasive species differ from native counterparts in statistical patterns of abundance across multiple sites. Invasive species on average reached significantly higher densities than native species and exhibited significantly higher variance. However, invasive and native species did not differ in terms of coefficient of variation, skewness, or kurtosis. Abundance distributions of all species were highly right skewed (skewness>0), meaning both invasive and native species occurred at low densities in most locations where they were present. The average abundance of invasive and native species was 6% and 2%, respectively, of the maximum abundance observed within a taxonomic group. The biological significance of the differences between invasive and native species depends on species-specific relationships between abundance and impact. Recognition of cross-site heterogeneity in population densities brings a new dimension to invasive species management, and may help to refine optimal prevention, containment, control, and eradication strategies.

  2. Commonly Rare and Rarely Common: Comparing Population Abundance of Invasive and Native Aquatic Species

    PubMed Central

    Hansen, Gretchen J. A.; Vander Zanden, M. Jake; Blum, Michael J.; Clayton, Murray K.; Hain, Ernie F.; Hauxwell, Jennifer; Izzo, Marit; Kornis, Matthew S.; McIntyre, Peter B.; Mikulyuk, Alison; Nilsson, Erika; Olden, Julian D.; Papeş, Monica; Sharma, Sapna

    2013-01-01

    Invasive species are leading drivers of environmental change. Their impacts are often linked to their population size, but surprisingly little is known about how frequently they achieve high abundances. A nearly universal pattern in ecology is that species are rare in most locations and abundant in a few, generating right-skewed abundance distributions. Here, we use abundance data from over 24,000 populations of 17 invasive and 104 native aquatic species to test whether invasive species differ from native counterparts in statistical patterns of abundance across multiple sites. Invasive species on average reached significantly higher densities than native species and exhibited significantly higher variance. However, invasive and native species did not differ in terms of coefficient of variation, skewness, or kurtosis. Abundance distributions of all species were highly right skewed (skewness>0), meaning both invasive and native species occurred at low densities in most locations where they were present. The average abundance of invasive and native species was 6% and 2%, respectively, of the maximum abundance observed within a taxonomic group. The biological significance of the differences between invasive and native species depends on species-specific relationships between abundance and impact. Recognition of cross-site heterogeneity in population densities brings a new dimension to invasive species management, and may help to refine optimal prevention, containment, control, and eradication strategies. PMID:24194883

  3. Commonly rare and rarely common: comparing population abundance of invasive and native aquatic species.

    PubMed

    Hansen, Gretchen J A; Vander Zanden, M Jake; Blum, Michael J; Clayton, Murray K; Hain, Ernie F; Hauxwell, Jennifer; Izzo, Marit; Kornis, Matthew S; McIntyre, Peter B; Mikulyuk, Alison; Nilsson, Erika; Olden, Julian D; Papeş, Monica; Sharma, Sapna

    2013-01-01

    Invasive species are leading drivers of environmental change. Their impacts are often linked to their population size, but surprisingly little is known about how frequently they achieve high abundances. A nearly universal pattern in ecology is that species are rare in most locations and abundant in a few, generating right-skewed abundance distributions. Here, we use abundance data from over 24,000 populations of 17 invasive and 104 native aquatic species to test whether invasive species differ from native counterparts in statistical patterns of abundance across multiple sites. Invasive species on average reached significantly higher densities than native species and exhibited significantly higher variance. However, invasive and native species did not differ in terms of coefficient of variation, skewness, or kurtosis. Abundance distributions of all species were highly right skewed (skewness>0), meaning both invasive and native species occurred at low densities in most locations where they were present. The average abundance of invasive and native species was 6% and 2%, respectively, of the maximum abundance observed within a taxonomic group. The biological significance of the differences between invasive and native species depends on species-specific relationships between abundance and impact. Recognition of cross-site heterogeneity in population densities brings a new dimension to invasive species management, and may help to refine optimal prevention, containment, control, and eradication strategies. PMID:24194883

  4. RELATIONSHIPS OF ALIEN PLANT SPECIES ABUNDANCE TO RIPARIAN VEGETATION, ENVIRONMENT, AND DISTURBANCE

    EPA Science Inventory

    Riparian ecosystems are often invaded by alien species. We evaluated vegetation, environment, and disturbance conditions and their interrelationships with alien species abundance along reaches of 29 streams in eastern Oregon, USA. Using flexible-BETA clustering, indicator species...

  5. Modeling the Impact of Climate and Landscape on the Efficacy of White Tailed Deer Vaccination for Cattle Tick Control in Northeastern Mexico

    PubMed Central

    Estrada-Peña, Agustín; Carreón, Diana; Almazán, Consuelo; de la Fuente, José

    2014-01-01

    Cattle ticks are distributed worldwide and affect animal health and livestock production. White tailed deer (WTD) sustain and spread cattle tick populations. The aim of this study was to model the efficacy of anti-tick vaccination of WTD to control tick infestations in the absence of cattle vaccination in a territory where both host species coexist and sustain cattle tick populations. Agent-based models that included land cover/landscape properties (patch size, distances to patches) and climatic conditions were built in a GIS environment to simulate WTD vaccine effectiveness under conditions where unvaccinated cattle shared the landscape. Published and validated information on tick life cycle was used to build models describing tick mortality and developmental rates. Data from simulations were applied to a large territory in northeastern Mexico where cattle ticks are endemic and WTD and cattle share substantial portions of the habitat. WTD movements were simulated together with tick population dynamics considering the actual landscape and climatic features. The size of the vegetation patches and the distance between patches were critical for the successful control of tick infestations after WTD vaccination. The presence of well-connected, large vegetation patches proved essential for tick control, since the tick could persist in areas of highly fragmented habitat. The continued application of one yearly vaccination on days 1-70 for three years reduced tick abundance/animal/patch by a factor of 40 and 60 for R. annulatus and R. microplus, respectively when compared to non-vaccinated controls. The study showed that vaccination of WTD alone during three consecutive years could result in the reduction of cattle tick populations in northeastern Mexico. Furthermore, the results of the simulations suggested the possibility of using vaccines to prevent the spread and thus the re-introduction of cattle ticks into tick-free areas. PMID:25047078

  6. Modeling the impact of climate and landscape on the efficacy of white tailed deer vaccination for cattle tick control in northeastern Mexico.

    PubMed

    Estrada-Peña, Agustín; Carreón, Diana; Almazán, Consuelo; de la Fuente, José

    2014-01-01

    Cattle ticks are distributed worldwide and affect animal health and livestock production. White tailed deer (WTD) sustain and spread cattle tick populations. The aim of this study was to model the efficacy of anti-tick vaccination of WTD to control tick infestations in the absence of cattle vaccination in a territory where both host species coexist and sustain cattle tick populations. Agent-based models that included land cover/landscape properties (patch size, distances to patches) and climatic conditions were built in a GIS environment to simulate WTD vaccine effectiveness under conditions where unvaccinated cattle shared the landscape. Published and validated information on tick life cycle was used to build models describing tick mortality and developmental rates. Data from simulations were applied to a large territory in northeastern Mexico where cattle ticks are endemic and WTD and cattle share substantial portions of the habitat. WTD movements were simulated together with tick population dynamics considering the actual landscape and climatic features. The size of the vegetation patches and the distance between patches were critical for the successful control of tick infestations after WTD vaccination. The presence of well-connected, large vegetation patches proved essential for tick control, since the tick could persist in areas of highly fragmented habitat. The continued application of one yearly vaccination on days 1-70 for three years reduced tick abundance/animal/patch by a factor of 40 and 60 for R. annulatus and R. microplus, respectively when compared to non-vaccinated controls. The study showed that vaccination of WTD alone during three consecutive years could result in the reduction of cattle tick populations in northeastern Mexico. Furthermore, the results of the simulations suggested the possibility of using vaccines to prevent the spread and thus the re-introduction of cattle ticks into tick-free areas.

  7. Modeling the impact of climate and landscape on the efficacy of white tailed deer vaccination for cattle tick control in northeastern Mexico.

    PubMed

    Estrada-Peña, Agustín; Carreón, Diana; Almazán, Consuelo; de la Fuente, José

    2014-01-01

    Cattle ticks are distributed worldwide and affect animal health and livestock production. White tailed deer (WTD) sustain and spread cattle tick populations. The aim of this study was to model the efficacy of anti-tick vaccination of WTD to control tick infestations in the absence of cattle vaccination in a territory where both host species coexist and sustain cattle tick populations. Agent-based models that included land cover/landscape properties (patch size, distances to patches) and climatic conditions were built in a GIS environment to simulate WTD vaccine effectiveness under conditions where unvaccinated cattle shared the landscape. Published and validated information on tick life cycle was used to build models describing tick mortality and developmental rates. Data from simulations were applied to a large territory in northeastern Mexico where cattle ticks are endemic and WTD and cattle share substantial portions of the habitat. WTD movements were simulated together with tick population dynamics considering the actual landscape and climatic features. The size of the vegetation patches and the distance between patches were critical for the successful control of tick infestations after WTD vaccination. The presence of well-connected, large vegetation patches proved essential for tick control, since the tick could persist in areas of highly fragmented habitat. The continued application of one yearly vaccination on days 1-70 for three years reduced tick abundance/animal/patch by a factor of 40 and 60 for R. annulatus and R. microplus, respectively when compared to non-vaccinated controls. The study showed that vaccination of WTD alone during three consecutive years could result in the reduction of cattle tick populations in northeastern Mexico. Furthermore, the results of the simulations suggested the possibility of using vaccines to prevent the spread and thus the re-introduction of cattle ticks into tick-free areas. PMID:25047078

  8. Spatial disaggregation of tick occurrence and ecology at a local scale as a preliminary step for spatial surveillance of tick-borne diseases: general framework and health implications in Belgium

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background The incidence of tick-borne diseases is increasing in Europe. Sub national information on tick distribution, ecology and vector status is often lacking. However, precise location of infection risk can lead to better targeted prevention measures, surveillance and control. Methods In this context, the current paper compiled geolocated tick occurrences in Belgium, a country where tick-borne disease has received little attention, in order to highlight the potential value of spatial approaches and draw some recommendations for future research priorities. Results Mapping of 89,289 ticks over 654 sites revealed that ticks such as Ixodes ricinus and Ixodes hexagonus are largely present while Dermacentor reticulatus has a patchy distribution. Suspected hot spots of tick diversity might favor pathogen exchanges and suspected hot spots of I. ricinus abundance might increase human-vector contact locally. This underlines the necessity to map pathogens and ticks in detail. While I. ricinus is the main vector, I. hexagonus is a vector and reservoir of Borrelia burgdorferi s.l., which is active the whole year and is also found in urban settings. This and other nidiculous species bite humans less frequently, but seem to harbour pathogens. Their role in maintaining a pathogenic cycle within the wildlife merits investigation as they might facilitate transmission to humans if co-occurring with I. ricinus. Many micro-organisms are found abroad in tick species present in Belgium. Most have not been recorded locally but have not been searched for. Some are transmitted directly at the time of the bite, suggesting promotion of tick avoidance additionally to tick removal. Conclusion This countrywide approach to tick-borne diseases has helped delineate recommendations for future research priorities necessary to design public health policies aimed at spatially integrating the major components of the ecological cycle of tick-borne diseases. A systematic survey of tick species and

  9. Molecular and serologic evidence of tick-borne Ehrlichiae in three species of lemurs from St. Catherines Island, Georgia, USA.

    PubMed

    Yabsley, Michael J; Norton, Terry M; Powell, Malcolm R; Davidson, William R

    2004-12-01

    In recent years, several species of ehrlichiae have been recognized as tick-borne disease agents of veterinary and medical importance. Clinically normal free-ranging or previously free-ranging lemurs, including 46 ring-tailed lemurs (Lemur catta), six blue-eyed black lemurs (Eulemur macaco flavifrons), and four black and white ruffed lemurs (Varecia variegata variegata) from St. Catherines Island, Georgia, were tested for evidence of exposure to tick-borne ehrlichiae. All 52 adult lemurs were serologically tested for exposure to Ehrlichia chaffeensis and Anaplasma phagocytophilum. Polymerase chain reaction (PCR) assays for E. chaffeensis, A. phagocytophilum, Ehrlichia ewingii, and Ehrlichia canis were conducted on blood samples from all 56 lemurs. Blood from all lemurs was inoculated into DH82 cell cultures for E. chaffeensis isolation. Of the adult lemurs, 20 (38.5%) and 16 (30.8%) had antibodies reactive (> or =1:128) for E. chaffeensis and A. phagocytophilum, respectively. Two ring-tailed lemurs were PCR and culture positive for E. chaffeensis. Molecular characterization of the two E. chaffeensis isolates showed that both contained 5-repeat variants of the variable-length PCR target (VLPT) antigen gene and 3-repeat variants of the 120-kDa antigen gene. Sequencing of the VLPT genes revealed a novel amino acid repeat unit (type-9). One lemur infected with E. chaffeensis was slightly hypoproteinemic and had moderately elevated serum alanine aminotransferase (ALT) levels. These lemurs from St. Catherines Island have been exposed to or infected with tick-borne ehrlichiae, or both, but showed no clinical disease. PMID:15732591

  10. Prevalence of Borrelia burgdorferi Sensu Lato in Ticks from Eastern China

    PubMed Central

    Hou, Juan; Ling, Feng; Chai, Chengliang; Lu, Ye; Yu, Xianghua; Lin, Junfen; Sun, Jimin; Chang, Yue; Ye, Xiaodong; Gu, Shiping; Pang, Weilong; Wang, Chengwei; Zheng, Xiaohua; Jiang, Jianmin; Chen, Zhiping; Gong, Zhenyu

    2015-01-01

    To explore the tick distribution and prevalence of Borrelia in Zhejiang Province, we performed a survey in nine sites. A total of 447 adult ticks of 11 species were captured and the dominant tick species were Haemaphysalis longicornis and Ixodes sinensis and the abundance of tick species in different areas varied significantly. Overall, 4.70% of the ticks were polymerase chain reaction (PCR) positive for Borrelia. The average PCR positive rates were 5.19% for H. longicornis, 3.45% for Amblyomma testudinarium, 1.06% for I. sinensis, 5.00% for Rhipicephalus (Boophilus) microplus, and 19.44% for Ixodes granulatus, respectively. No Borrelia DNA was detected in Rhiphicephalus haemaphysaloides, Haemaphysalis yeni, Dermacentor taiwanensis, Haemaphysalis hystricis, Hyalomna asiaticum, and Ixodes ovatus. The prevalence of Borrelia was significantly different among tick species and the prevalence in I. granulatus was significantly higher than that in other tick species. Of note, experimentally confirmed vectors for B. burgdorferi s.l. including I. sinensis and I. granulatus were found in Zhejiang Province. Two species of B. burgdorferi s.l. exist in Zhejiang Province of which 12 sequences were most similar to the sequence of Borrelia garinii and nine sequences were most similar to the sequence of Borrelia valaisiana or Borrelia yangtze sp. nov. PMID:25548382

  11. Plant Trait-Species Abundance Relationships Vary with Environmental Properties in Subtropical Forests in Eastern China

    PubMed Central

    Yan, En-Rong; Yang, Xiao-Dong; Chang, Scott X.; Wang, Xi-Hua

    2013-01-01

    Understanding how plant trait-species abundance relationships change with a range of single and multivariate environmental properties is crucial for explaining species abundance and rarity. In this study, the abundance of 94 woody plant species was examined and related to 15 plant leaf and wood traits at both local and landscape scales involving 31 plots in subtropical forests in eastern China. Further, plant trait-species abundance relationships were related to a range of single and multivariate (PCA axes) environmental properties such as air humidity, soil moisture content, soil temperature, soil pH, and soil organic matter, nitrogen (N) and phosphorus (P) contents. At the landscape scale, plant maximum height, and twig and stem wood densities were positively correlated, whereas mean leaf area (MLA), leaf N concentration (LN), and total leaf area per twig size (TLA) were negatively correlated with species abundance. At the plot scale, plant maximum height, leaf and twig dry matter contents, twig and stem wood densities were positively correlated, but MLA, specific leaf area, LN, leaf P concentration and TLA were negatively correlated with species abundance. Plant trait-species abundance relationships shifted over the range of seven single environmental properties and along multivariate environmental axes in a similar way. In conclusion, strong relationships between plant traits and species abundance existed among and within communities. Significant shifts in plant trait-species abundance relationships in a range of environmental properties suggest strong environmental filtering processes that influence species abundance and rarity in the studied subtropical forests. PMID:23560114

  12. Plant trait-species abundance relationships vary with environmental properties in subtropical forests in eastern china.

    PubMed

    Yan, En-Rong; Yang, Xiao-Dong; Chang, Scott X; Wang, Xi-Hua

    2013-01-01

    Understanding how plant trait-species abundance relationships change with a range of single and multivariate environmental properties is crucial for explaining species abundance and rarity. In this study, the abundance of 94 woody plant species was examined and related to 15 plant leaf and wood traits at both local and landscape scales involving 31 plots in subtropical forests in eastern China. Further, plant trait-species abundance relationships were related to a range of single and multivariate (PCA axes) environmental properties such as air humidity, soil moisture content, soil temperature, soil pH, and soil organic matter, nitrogen (N) and phosphorus (P) contents. At the landscape scale, plant maximum height, and twig and stem wood densities were positively correlated, whereas mean leaf area (MLA), leaf N concentration (LN), and total leaf area per twig size (TLA) were negatively correlated with species abundance. At the plot scale, plant maximum height, leaf and twig dry matter contents, twig and stem wood densities were positively correlated, but MLA, specific leaf area, LN, leaf P concentration and TLA were negatively correlated with species abundance. Plant trait-species abundance relationships shifted over the range of seven single environmental properties and along multivariate environmental axes in a similar way. In conclusion, strong relationships between plant traits and species abundance existed among and within communities. Significant shifts in plant trait-species abundance relationships in a range of environmental properties suggest strong environmental filtering processes that influence species abundance and rarity in the studied subtropical forests. PMID:23560114

  13. Ixodes scapularis Tick Saliva Proteins Sequentially Secreted Every 24 h during Blood Feeding

    PubMed Central

    Pinto, Antônio F. M.; Moresco, James; Yates, John R.; da Silva Vaz, Itabajara; Mulenga, Albert

    2016-01-01

    Ixodes scapularis is the most medically important tick species and transmits five of the 14 reportable human tick borne disease (TBD) agents in the USA. This study describes LC-MS/MS identification of 582 tick- and 83 rabbit proteins in saliva of I. scapularis ticks that fed for 24, 48, 72, 96, and 120 h, as well as engorged but not detached (BD), and spontaneously detached (SD). The 582 tick proteins include proteases (5.7%), protease inhibitors (7.4%), unknown function proteins (22%), immunity/antimicrobial (2.6%), lipocalin (3.1%), heme/iron binding (2.6%), extracellular matrix/ cell adhesion (2.2%), oxidant metabolism/ detoxification (6%), transporter/ receptor related (3.2%), cytoskeletal (5.5%), and housekeeping-like (39.7%). Notable observations include: (i) tick saliva proteins of unknown function accounting for >33% of total protein content, (ii) 79% of proteases are metalloproteases, (iii) 13% (76/582) of proteins in this study were found in saliva of other tick species and, (iv) ticks apparently selectively inject functionally similar but unique proteins every 24 h, which we speculate is the tick's antigenic variation equivalent strategy to protect important tick feeding functions from host immune system. The host immune responses to proteins present in 24 h I. scapularis saliva will not be effective at later feeding stages. Rabbit proteins identified in our study suggest the tick's strategic use of host proteins to modulate the feeding site. Notably fibrinogen, which is central to blood clotting and wound healing, was detected in high abundance in BD and SD saliva, when the tick is preparing to terminate feeding and detach from the host. A remarkable tick adaptation is that the feeding lesion is completely healed when the tick detaches from the host. Does the tick concentrate fibrinogen at the feeding site to aide in promoting healing of the feeding lesion? Overall, these data provide broad insight into molecular mechanisms regulating different tick

  14. Nidicolous ticks of small mammals in Anaplasma phagocytophilum-enzootic sites in northern California

    PubMed Central

    Foley, Janet; Rejmanek, Daniel; Fleer, Katryna; Nieto, Nathan

    2011-01-01

    Ixodes spp. tick-borne zoonotic diseases are present across the Holarctic in humans, domestic animals, and wildlife. Small mammals are reservoirs for the rickettsial pathogen Anaplasma phagocytophilum and tick vectors may include catholic-feeding bridge vectors as well as host-specialist or nidicolous ticks. Far western North American communities in which A. phagocytophilum is maintained are complex ecologically, with multiple reservoir host and tick species, multiple strains of the bacterial pathogen A. phagocytophilum and differences in dynamics of hosts and vectors across heterogeneous landscapes. We evaluated sites in northern California in order to identify primarily nidicolous ticks and the hosts they infest. A total of 667 ticks was found in 11 study sites, including 288 on flags and 379 attached to small mammals. Larvae were over-represented among attached ticks and adults on flags. The most abundant species was I. pacificus. Two-hundred fourteen nidicolous ticks were found, most abundantly I. angustus and I. spinipalpis. All adult I. ochotonae, I. auritulus, I. angustus, I. jellisoni, and I. woodi were female, while the male:female ratio of I. spinipalpis was 1.2:1 and 1:1 for I. pacificus. The greatest number of ticks was obtained from Tamias ochrogenys, Peromyscus spp., and Neotoma fuscipes. Of 234 small mammal individuals that were infested with Ixodes spp., only 81 (34.6%) were infested with I. pacificus. The remaining infested small mammals hosted nidicolous tick species. Eight ticks were PCR-positive, including 6 I. pacificus (one adult, one larva, and 6 nymphs), and 2 adult I. ochotonae and high PCR prevalences of 18% and 9% were detected in woodrats and chipmunks, respectively. Nymphal I. angustus ticks were active year-long with a possible increase in August while larval activity was only observed in December and spring months and adults only during spring and fall. Overall, we show high tick species richness and year-round high levels of

  15. Comparative Metagenomic Profiling of Symbiotic Bacterial Communities Associated with Ixodes persulcatus, Ixodes pavlovskyi and Dermacentor reticulatus Ticks

    PubMed Central

    Kurilshikov, Alexander; Livanova, Natalya N.; Fomenko, Nataliya V.; Tupikin, Alexey E.; Rar, Vera A.; Kabilov, Marsel R.; Livanov, Stanislav G.; Tikunova, Nina V.

    2015-01-01

    Ixodes persulcatus, Ixodes pavlovskyi, and Dermacentor reticulatus ticks inhabiting Western Siberia are responsible for the transmission of a number of etiological agents that cause human and animal tick-borne diseases. Because these ticks are abundant in the suburbs of large cities, agricultural areas, and popular tourist sites and frequently attack people and livestock, data regarding the microbiomes of these organisms are required. Using metagenomic 16S profiling, we evaluate bacterial communities associated with I. persulcatus, I. pavlovskyi, and D. reticulatus ticks collected from the Novosibirsk region of Russia. A total of 1214 ticks were used for this study. DNA extracted from the ticks was pooled according to tick species and sex. Sequencing of the V3-V5 domains of 16S rRNA genes was performed using the Illumina Miseq platform. The following bacterial genera were prevalent in the examined communities: Acinetobacter (all three tick species), Rickettsia (I. persulcatus and D. reticulatus) and Francisella (D. reticulatus). B. burgdorferi sensu lato and B. miyamotoi sequences were detected in I. persulcatus and I. pavlovskyi but not in D. reticulatus ticks. The pooled samples of all tick species studied contained bacteria from the Anaplasmataceae family, although their occurrence was low. DNA from A. phagocytophilum and Candidatus Neoehrlichia mikurensis was first observed in I. pavlovskyi ticks. Significant inter-species differences in the number of bacterial taxa as well as intra-species diversity related to tick sex were observed. The bacterial communities associated with the I. pavlovskyi ticks displayed a higher biodiversity compared with those of the I. persulcatus and D. reticulatus ticks. Bacterial community structure was also diverse across the studied tick species, as shown by permutational analysis of variance using the Bray-Curtis dissimilarity metric (p = 0.002). Between-sex variation was confirmed by PERMANOVA testing in I. persulcatus (p = 0

  16. Unique strains of Anaplasma phagocytophilum segregate among diverse questing and non-questing Ixodes tick species in the western United States

    PubMed Central

    Rejmanek, Daniel; Freycon, Pauline; Bradburd, Gideon; Dinstell, Jenna; Foley, Janet

    2013-01-01

    The emerging tick-borne pathogen Anaplasma phagocytophilum infects humans, domestic animals, and wildlife throughout the Holarctic. In the western U.S., the ecology of A. phagocytophilum is particularly complex, with multiple pathogen strains, tick vectors, and reservoir hosts. A recent phylogenetic analysis of A. phagocytophilum strains isolated from various small mammal hosts in California documented distinct clustering of woodrat strains separate from sciurid (chipmunk and squirrel) strains. Here, we identified strains of A. phagocytophilum in various Ixodes tick species in California and related these genotypes to those found among reservoir and clinical hosts from the same areas. The sequences from all of the nidicolous (nest-dwelling) Ixodes ticks grouped within a clade that also contained all of the woodrat-origin A. phagocytophilum strains. Two of the I. pacificus sequences were also grouped within this woodrat clade, while the remaining five belonged to a less genetically diverse clade that included several sciurid-origin strains as well as a dog, a horse, and a human strain. By comparing A. phagocytophilum strains from multiple sources concurrently, we were able to gain a clearer picture of how A. phagocytophilum strains in the western U.S. are partitioned, which hosts and vectors are most likely to be infected with a particular strain, and which tick species and reservoir hosts pose the greatest health risk to humans and domestic animals. PMID:23994335

  17. Unique strains of Anaplasma phagocytophilum segregate among diverse questing and non-questing Ixodes tick species in the western United States.

    PubMed

    Rejmanek, Daniel; Freycon, Pauline; Bradburd, Gideon; Dinstell, Jenna; Foley, Janet

    2013-12-01

    The emerging tick-borne pathogen Anaplasma phagocytophilum infects humans, domestic animals, and wildlife throughout the Holarctic. In the western US, the ecology of A. phagocytophilum is particularly complex, with multiple pathogen strains, tick vectors, and reservoir hosts. A recent phylogenetic analysis of A. phagocytophilum strains isolated from various small mammal hosts in California documented distinct clustering of woodrat strains separate from sciurid (chipmunk and squirrel) strains. Here, we identified strains of A. phagocytophilum in various Ixodes tick species in California and related these genotypes to those found among reservoir and clinical hosts from the same areas. The sequences from all of the nidicolous (nest-dwelling) Ixodes ticks grouped within a clade that also contained all of the woodrat-origin A. phagocytophilum strains. Two of the I. pacificus sequences were also grouped within this woodrat clade, while the remaining five belonged to a less genetically diverse clade that included several sciurid-origin strains as well as a dog, a horse, and a human strain. By comparing A. phagocytophilum strains from multiple sources concurrently, we were able to gain a clearer picture of how A. phagocytophilum strains in the western US are partitioned, which hosts and vectors are most likely to be infected with a particular strain, and which tick species and reservoir hosts pose the greatest health risk to humans and domestic animals.

  18. Detection of Two Zoonotic Babesia microti Lineages, the Hobetsu and U.S. Lineages, in Two Sympatric Tick Species, Ixodes ovatus and Ixodes persulcatus, Respectively, in Japan

    PubMed Central

    Tsuji, Masayoshi; Qiang, Wei; Nakao, Minoru; Hirata, Haruyuki; Ishihara, Chiaki

    2012-01-01

    The species Babesia microti, commonly found in rodents, demonstrates a high degree of genetic diversity. Three lineages, U.S., Kobe, and Hobetsu, are known to have zoonotic potential, but their tick vector(s) in Japan remains to be elucidated. We conducted a field investigation at Nemuro on Hokkaido Island and at Sumoto on Awaji Island, where up to two of the three lineages occur with similar frequencies in reservoirs. By flagging vegetation at these spots and surrounding areas, 4,010 ticks, comprising six species, were collected. A nested PCR that detects the 18S rRNA gene of Babesia species revealed that Ixodes ovatus and I. persulcatus alone were positive. Lineage-specific PCR for rRNA-positive samples demonstrated that I. ovatus and I. persulcatus carried, respectively, the Hobetsu and U.S. parasites. No Kobe-specific DNA was detected. Infected I. ovatus ticks were found at multiple sites, including Nemuro and Sumoto, with minimum infection rates (MIR) of ∼12.3%. However, all I. persulcatus ticks collected within the same regions, a total of 535, were negative for the Hobetsu lineage, indicating that I. ovatus, but not I. persulcatus, was the vector for the lineage. At Nemuro, U.S. lineage was detected in 2 of 139 adult I. persulcatus ticks (MIR, 1.4%), for the first time, while 48 of I. ovatus ticks were negative for that lineage. Laboratory experiments confirmed the transmission of Hobetsu and U.S. parasites to hamsters via I. ovatus and I. persulcatus, respectively. Differences in vector capacity shown by MIRs at Nemuro, where the two species were equally likely to acquire either lineage of parasite, may explain the difference in distribution of Hobetsu throughout Japan and U.S. taxa in Nemuro. These findings are of importance in the assessment of the regional risk for babesiosis in humans. PMID:22389378

  19. Two new species of African Haemaphysalis ticks (Acari: Ixodidae), carnivore parasites of the H. (Rhipistoma) leachi group.

    PubMed

    Apanaskevich, Dmitry A; Horak, Ivan G

    2008-06-01

    Two new tick species belonging to the African Haemaphysalis (Rhipistoma) leachi subgroup, namely H. (R.) colesbergensis n. sp. and H. (R.) oliveri n. sp., are described. Haemaphysalis (R.) colesbergensis adults are easily differentiated from the other species of the H. (R.) leachi subgroup, including H. (R.) oliveri, by the spur on coxa IV, which is considerably longer than that on coxa III. The adults of the 2 new species are equal in size, but the dental formula of the hypostome of H. (R.) colesbergensis is 4/4 compared to 5/5 for H. (R.) oliveri. The dental formula of H. (R.) oliveri also distinguishes it from other ticks in the subgroup, namely H. (R.) leachi, H. (R.) elliptica, H. (R.) moreli, and H. (R.) punctaleachi (4/4 in these species), but not from H. (R.) paraleachi, which has a 5/5 dental arrangement. However, the average total length and width of H. (R.) oliveri males (2.47 x 1.20 mm) are considerably shorter and narrower than those of H. (R.) paraleachi males (3.81 x 1.79 mm). Similar differences in size apply to the females. Nymphs and larvae of H. (R.) colesbergensis and H. (R.) oliveri can be distinguished from those of other members of the H. (R.) leachi subgroup, as well as from each other, by a combination of the following characters: size and measurement ratios, length of posterodorsal and posteroventral spurs on palpal segment II, and number of denticles per file on the hypostome. Haemaphysalis (R.) colesbergensis is known only from South Africa, where it has been collected from domestic cats and dogs and medium-sized wild felids. Haemaphysalis (R.) oliveri is recorded only from Sudan, where it has been collected from small- to medium-sized wild felids and canids and an antelope. The hosts of the immature stages of H. (R.) colesbergensis are unknown, while nymphs of H. (R.) oliveri have been collected from rodents. PMID:18605788

  20. Two new species of African Haemaphysalis ticks (Acari: Ixodidae), carnivore parasites of the H. (Rhipistoma) leachi group.

    PubMed

    Apanaskevich, Dmitry A; Horak, Ivan G

    2008-06-01

    Two new tick species belonging to the African Haemaphysalis (Rhipistoma) leachi subgroup, namely H. (R.) colesbergensis n. sp. and H. (R.) oliveri n. sp., are described. Haemaphysalis (R.) colesbergensis adults are easily differentiated from the other species of the H. (R.) leachi subgroup, including H. (R.) oliveri, by the spur on coxa IV, which is considerably longer than that on coxa III. The adults of the 2 new species are equal in size, but the dental formula of the hypostome of H. (R.) colesbergensis is 4/4 compared to 5/5 for H. (R.) oliveri. The dental formula of H. (R.) oliveri also distinguishes it from other ticks in the subgroup, namely H. (R.) leachi, H. (R.) elliptica, H. (R.) moreli, and H. (R.) punctaleachi (4/4 in these species), but not from H. (R.) paraleachi, which has a 5/5 dental arrangement. However, the average total length and width of H. (R.) oliveri males (2.47 x 1.20 mm) are considerably shorter and narrower than those of H. (R.) paraleachi males (3.81 x 1.79 mm). Similar differences in size apply to the females. Nymphs and larvae of H. (R.) colesbergensis and H. (R.) oliveri can be distinguished from those of other members of the H. (R.) leachi subgroup, as well as from each other, by a combination of the following characters: size and measurement ratios, length of posterodorsal and posteroventral spurs on palpal segment II, and number of denticles per file on the hypostome. Haemaphysalis (R.) colesbergensis is known only from South Africa, where it has been collected from domestic cats and dogs and medium-sized wild felids. Haemaphysalis (R.) oliveri is recorded only from Sudan, where it has been collected from small- to medium-sized wild felids and canids and an antelope. The hosts of the immature stages of H. (R.) colesbergensis are unknown, while nymphs of H. (R.) oliveri have been collected from rodents.

  1. Susceptibility of four tick species, Amblyomma americanum, Dermacentor variabilis, Ixodes scapularis, and Rhipicephalus sanguineus (Acari: Ixodidae), to nootkatone from essential oil of grapefruit.

    PubMed

    Flor-Weiler, Lina B; Behle, Robert W; Stafford, Kirby C

    2011-03-01

    Toxicity of nootkatone was determined in laboratory assays against unfed nymphs of Amblyomma americanum L., Dermacentor variabilis (Say), Ixodes scapularis Say, and Rhipicephalus sanguineus Latreille. We determined the 50% lethal concentration (LC50) and 90% lethal concentration (LC90) of nootkatone by recording tick mortality 24 h after exposure in treated glass vials. Nymphs were susceptible to nootkatone with LC50 values of 0.352, 0.233, 0.169, and 0.197 microg/cm2, and LC90 values of 1.001, 0.644, 0.549, and 0.485 microg/cm2 for A. americanum, D. variabilis, I. scapularis, and R. sanguineus, respectively. The LC50 value for R. sanquineus was not significantly different from D. variabilis or I. scapularis. Other LC50 comparisons were significantly different. The LC90 for A. americanum was higher when compared with the three other tick species, which were not significantly different. Because nootkatone is volatile, we measured the amount of nootkatone recovered from duplicate-treated vials before tick exposure and from vials after tick exposure. Nootkatone recovered from vials before exposure ranged from 82 to 112% of the expected amounts. The nootkatone recovered after the 24-h exposure period ranged from 89% from vials coated with higher concentrations of nootkatone, down to 29% from vials coated with low nootkatone concentrations. Determination of the nootkatone residue after vial coating demonstrated loss of the active compound while verifying the levels of tick exposure. Toxicity of low concentrations of nootkatone to the active questing stage of ticks reported in this study provides a reference point for future formulation research to exploit nootkatone as a safe and environment-friendly tick control. PMID:21485368

  2. Microbiome changes through ontogeny of a tick pathogen vector.

    PubMed

    Zolnik, Christine P; Prill, Robert J; Falco, Richard C; Daniels, Thomas J; Kolokotronis, Sergios-Orestis

    2016-10-01

    Blacklegged ticks (Ixodes scapularis) are one of the most important pathogen vectors in the United States, responsible for transmitting Lyme disease and other tick-borne diseases. The structure of a host's microbial community has the potential to affect the ecology and evolution of the host. We employed high-throughput sequencing of the 16S rRNA gene V3-V4 hypervariable regions in the first study to investigate the tick microbiome across all developmental stages (larvae, nymphs, adults). In addition to field-collected life stages, newly hatched laboratory-reared larvae were studied to determine the baseline microbial community structure and to assess transovarial transmission. We also targeted midguts and salivary glands due to their importance in pathogen maintenance and transmission. Over 100 000 sequences were produced per life stage replicate. Rickettsia was the most abundant bacterial genus across all sample types matching mostly the Ixodes rickettsial endosymbionts, and its proportion decreased as developmental stage progressed, with the exception of adult females that harboured a mean relative abundance of 97.9%. Laboratory-reared larvae displayed the lowest bacterial diversity, containing almost exclusively Rickettsia. Many of the remaining bacteria included genera associated with soil, water and plants, suggesting environmental acquisition while off-host. Female organs exhibited significantly different β-diversity than the whole tick from which they were derived. Our results demonstrate clear differences in both α- and β-diversity among tick developmental stages and between tick organs and the tick as a whole. Furthermore, field-acquired bacteria appear to be very important to the overall internal bacterial community of this tick species, with influence from the host bloodmeal appearing limited. PMID:27588381

  3. Modelling community dynamics based on species-level abundance models from detection/nondetection data

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Yamaura, Yuichi; Royle, J. Andrew; Kuboi, Kouji; Tada, Tsuneo; Ikeno, Susumu; Makino, Shun'ichi

    2011-01-01

    1. In large-scale field surveys, a binary recording of each species' detection or nondetection has been increasingly adopted for its simplicity and low cost. Because of the importance of abundance in many studies, it is desirable to obtain inferences about abundance at species-, functional group-, and community-levels from such binary data. 2. We developed a novel hierarchical multi-species abundance model based on species-level detection/nondetection data. The model accounts for the existence of undetected species, and variability in abundance and detectability among species. Species-level detection/nondetection is linked to species- level abundance via a detection model that accommodates the expectation that probability of detection (at least one individuals is detected) increases with local abundance of the species. We applied this model to a 9-year dataset composed of the detection/nondetection of forest birds, at a single post-fire site (from 7 to 15 years after fire) in a montane area of central Japan. The model allocated undetected species into one of the predefined functional groups by assuming a prior distribution on individual group membership. 3. The results suggest that 15–20 species were missed in each year, and that species richness of communities and functional groups did not change with post-fire forest succession. Overall abundance of birds and abundance of functional groups tended to increase over time, although only in the winter, while decreases in detectabilities were observed in several species. 4. Synthesis and applications. Understanding and prediction of large-scale biodiversity dynamics partly hinge on how we can use data effectively. Our hierarchical model for detection/nondetection data estimates abundance in space/time at species-, functional group-, and community-levels while accounting for undetected individuals and species. It also permits comparison of multiple communities by many types of abundance-based diversity and similarity

  4. Fish and Phytoplankton Exhibit Contrasting Temporal Species Abundance Patterns in a Dynamic North Temperate Lake

    PubMed Central

    Hansen, Gretchen J. A.; Carey, Cayelan C.

    2015-01-01

    Temporal patterns of species abundance, although less well-studied than spatial patterns, provide valuable insight to the processes governing community assembly. We compared temporal abundance distributions of two communities, phytoplankton and fish, in a north temperate lake. We used both 17 years of observed relative abundance data as well as resampled data from Monte Carlo simulations to account for the possible effects of non-detection of rare species. Similar to what has been found in other communities, phytoplankton and fish species that appeared more frequently were generally more abundant than rare species. However, neither community exhibited two distinct groups of “core” (common occurrence and high abundance) and “occasional” (rare occurrence and low abundance) species. Both observed and resampled data show that the phytoplankton community was dominated by occasional species appearing in only one year that exhibited large variation in their abundances, while the fish community was dominated by core species occurring in all 17 years at high abundances. We hypothesize that the life-history traits that enable phytoplankton to persist in highly dynamic environments may result in communities dominated by occasional species capable of reaching high abundances when conditions allow. Conversely, longer turnover times and broad environmental tolerances of fish may result in communities dominated by core species structured primarily by competitive interactions. PMID:25651399

  5. Fish and phytoplankton exhibit contrasting temporal species abundance patterns in a dynamic north temperate lake.

    PubMed

    Hansen, Gretchen J A; Carey, Cayelan C

    2015-01-01

    Temporal patterns of species abundance, although less well-studied than spatial patterns, provide valuable insight to the processes governing community assembly. We compared temporal abundance distributions of two communities, phytoplankton and fish, in a north temperate lake. We used both 17 years of observed relative abundance data as well as resampled data from Monte Carlo simulations to account for the possible effects of non-detection of rare species. Similar to what has been found in other communities, phytoplankton and fish species that appeared more frequently were generally more abundant than rare species. However, neither community exhibited two distinct groups of "core" (common occurrence and high abundance) and "occasional" (rare occurrence and low abundance) species. Both observed and resampled data show that the phytoplankton community was dominated by occasional species appearing in only one year that exhibited large variation in their abundances, while the fish community was dominated by core species occurring in all 17 years at high abundances. We hypothesize that the life-history traits that enable phytoplankton to persist in highly dynamic environments may result in communities dominated by occasional species capable of reaching high abundances when conditions allow. Conversely, longer turnover times and broad environmental tolerances of fish may result in communities dominated by core species structured primarily by competitive interactions. PMID:25651399

  6. Influence of deer abundance on the abundance of questing adult Ixodes scapularis (Acari: Ixodidae)

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Ginsberg, H.S.; Zhioua, E.

    1999-01-01

    Nymphal and adult Ixodes scapularis Say were sampled by flagging at 2 sites on a barrier island, Fire Island, NY, and at 2 sites on the nearby mainland. Nymphal densities did not differ consistently between island and mainland sites, but adult densities were consistently lower on the island. We tested whether lower adult densities on the island resulted from greater nymphal mortality on the island than the mainland, or whether adult ticks on the island were poorly sampled by flagging because they had attached abundantly to deer, which were common on Fire Island. Differential nymphal mortality on islands vs. mainland did not explain this difference in adult densities because survival of flat and engorged nymphs in enclosures was the same at island and mainland sites. Ticks were infected by parasitic wasps on the island and not the mainland, but the infection rate (4.3%) was too low to explain the difference in adult tick densities. In contrast, exclusion of deer by game fencing on Fire Island resulted in markedly increased numbers of adult ticks in flagging samples inside compared to samples taken outside the exclosures. Therefore, the scarcity of adult ticks in flagging samples on Fire Island resulted, at least in part, from the ticks being unavailable to flagging samples because they were on deer hosts. Differences in the densities of flagged ticks inside and outside the exclosures were used to estimate the percentage of questing adults on Fire Island that found deer hosts, excluding those that attached to other host species. Approximately 56% of these questing adult ticks found deer hosts in 1995 and 50% found deer hosts in 1996. Therefore, in areas where vertebrate hosts are highly abundant, large proportions of the questing tick population can find hosts. Moreover, comparisons of tick densities at different sites by flagging can potentially be biased by differences in host densities among sites.

  7. Host-seeking activity of ixodid ticks in relation to weather variables.

    PubMed

    Hubálek, Zdenek; Halouzka, Jirí; Juricová, Zina

    2003-12-01

    Ixodid ticks were monitored in a temperate deciduous broad-leaved forest in South Moravia (Czech Republic). Relative abundance of the ticks collected before noon (10.00-12.00 h) was compared to several weather variables (air and soil temperatures, relative humidity, precipitation, wind speed, and derived values) using the Pearson correlation coefficient. The tick numbers were found to be most closely related to the amplitude of the soil (-5 cm) temperature between 07 h and 14 h (TSamp, in Ixodes ricinus), and the soil temperature (TS) at noon (in Haemaphysalis concinna) or in the morning (Dermacentor reticulatus). While a growing amplitude in TSamp caused an increased host-seeking activity of I. ricinus and H. concinna, it suppressed the activity of D. reticulatus, a tick species mainly occurring in colder seasons of the year in Central Europe. The air temperature (TA) and relative humidity (RH) were also closely related to the tick activity, whereas rainfall and wind speed remained largely uncorrelated with the activity of the three tick species. Multiple linear regression on several variables (TSamp, TA, TS, TA-TS, RH) explained 48% of the variance in I. ricinus, 47% in H. concinna, and 38% in D. reticulatus. Predictive two-variable regression models of relative abundance in host-seeking ticks were based on morning temperature (TA or TS) and morning RH as the most important environmental factors: they explained 32% (I. ricinus), 39% (H. concinna), and 35% (D. reticulatus) of the variance.

  8. Ticks infesting birds in Atlantic Forest fragments in Rio Claro, State of Sao Paulo, Brazil.

    PubMed

    Sanches, Gustavo Seron; Martins, Thiago Fernandes; Lopes, Ileyne Tenório; Costa, Luís Flávio da Silva; Nunes, Pablo Henrique; Camargo-Mathias, Maria Izabel; Labruna, Marcelo Bahia

    2013-01-01

    In the present study, we report tick infestations on wild birds in plots of the Atlantic Forest reforested fragments with native species and plots reforested with Eucalyptus tereticornis in the municipality of Rio Claro, State of Sao Paulo, Brazil. A total of 256 birds were captured: 137 individuals of 33 species, in planted native forest; and 128 individuals of 37 species, in planted Eucalyptus tereticornis forest. Nymphs of two tick species were found on the birds: Amblyomma calcaratum and Amblyomma longirostre, the former was more abundant in the fragments reforested with Atlantic forest native species, and the latter in the fragment reforested with E. tereticornis. New host records were presented for A. calcaratum.

  9. [IXODID TICKS (PARASITIFORMES: IXODIDAE) FROM SMALL MAMMALS IN DEFORESTED BOREAL HABITATS IN THE NORTHERN EUROPEAN RUSSIA].

    PubMed

    Bespyatova, L A; Bugmyrin, S V

    2015-01-01

    Changes in the population density of two hard tick species, Ixodes (Exopalpiger) trianguliceps Birula, 1895 and Ixodes persulcatus Schulze, 1930, were examined in 1998-2001, and in 2003-2004 near Gomselga Village (Kondopoga District, 62° 04' N, 33° 55' E) in central Karelia. Data on the abundance of ixodid ticks and the species composition of their hosts in 4 forest sites at different stages of post-felling regeneration (secondary succession), i. e. 7-14, 12-19, 25-32, and 80-87 after logging were obtained. I. persulcatus dominated, comprising 73 % of the total tick number in samples. Regenera- tion of the forest resulted in fluctuations of the population density of two examined tick species: I. (Exopalpiger) trianguliceps (larvae 2.8-5.3; nymphs 1.5-2.2; adults 0-0.09) and I. persulcatus (larvae 4.3-10.6; nymphs 0.6-4.2).

  10. [IXODID TICKS (PARASITIFORMES: IXODIDAE) FROM SMALL MAMMALS IN DEFORESTED BOREAL HABITATS IN THE NORTHERN EUROPEAN RUSSIA].

    PubMed

    Bespyatova, L A; Bugmyrin, S V

    2015-01-01

    Changes in the population density of two hard tick species, Ixodes (Exopalpiger) trianguliceps Birula, 1895 and Ixodes persulcatus Schulze, 1930, were examined in 1998-2001, and in 2003-2004 near Gomselga Village (Kondopoga District, 62° 04' N, 33° 55' E) in central Karelia. Data on the abundance of ixodid ticks and the species composition of their hosts in 4 forest sites at different stages of post-felling regeneration (secondary succession), i. e. 7-14, 12-19, 25-32, and 80-87 after logging were obtained. I. persulcatus dominated, comprising 73 % of the total tick number in samples. Regenera- tion of the forest resulted in fluctuations of the population density of two examined tick species: I. (Exopalpiger) trianguliceps (larvae 2.8-5.3; nymphs 1.5-2.2; adults 0-0.09) and I. persulcatus (larvae 4.3-10.6; nymphs 0.6-4.2). PMID:26946827

  11. Synanthropic birds influence the distribution of Borrelia species: analysis of Ixodes ricinus ticks feeding on passerine birds.

    PubMed

    Dubska, Lenka; Literak, Ivan; Kocianova, Elena; Taragelova, Veronika; Sverakova, Veronika; Sychra, Oldrich; Hromadko, Miloslav

    2011-02-01

    Ixodes ricinus ticks collected from 835 birds and from vegetation in the Czech Republic were analyzed. Host-seeking ticks (n = 427) were infected predominantly by Borrelia afzelii (25%). Ticks (n = 1,012) from songbirds (Passeriformes) were infected commonly by Borrelia garinii (12.1%) and Borrelia valaisiana (13.4%). Juveniles of synanthropic birds, Eurasian blackbirds (Turdus merula) and song thrushes (Turdus philomelos), were major reservoir hosts of B. garinii. PMID:21148704

  12. From the Cover: Ecological community description using the food web, species abundance, and body size

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cohen, Joel E.; Jonsson, Tomas; Carpenter, Stephen R.

    2003-02-01

    Measuring the numerical abundance and average body size of individuals of each species in an ecological community's food web reveals new patterns and illuminates old ones. This approach is illustrated using data from the pelagic community of a small lake: Tuesday Lake, Michigan, United States. Body mass varies almost 12 orders of magnitude. Numerical abundance varies almost 10 orders of magnitude. Biomass abundance (average body mass times numerical abundance) varies only 5 orders of magnitude. A new food web graph, which plots species and trophic links in the plane spanned by body mass and numerical abundance, illustrates the nearly inverse relationship between body mass and numerical abundance, as well as the pattern of energy flow in the community. Species with small average body mass occur low in the food web of Tuesday Lake and are numerically abundant. Larger-bodied species occur higher in the food web and are numerically rarer. Average body size explains more of the variation in numerical abundance than does trophic height. The trivariate description of an ecological community by using the food web, average body sizes, and numerical abundance includes many well studied bivariate and univariate relationships based on subsets of these three variables. We are not aware of any single community for which all of these relationships have been analyzed simultaneously. Our approach demonstrates the connectedness of ecological patterns traditionally treated as independent. Moreover, knowing the food web gives new insight into the disputed form of the allometric relationship between body mass and abundance.

  13. New Insights on Jupiter's Deep Water Abundance from Disequilibrium Species

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, Dong; Gierasch, Peter; Lunine, Jonathan; Mousis, Olivier

    2014-11-01

    The bulk water abundance on Jupiter potentially constrains the planet's formation conditions. We aim to improve the chemical constraints on Jupiter's deep water abundance in this paper. The eddy diffusion coefficient is used to model vertical mixing in planetary atmosphere, and based on laboratory studies dedicated to turbulent rotating convection, we propose a new formulation of eddy diffusion coefficient. The new formulation predicts a smooth transition from slow rotation regime (near the equator) to the rapid rotation regime (near the pole). We estimate an uncertainty for newly derived coefficient of less than 25%, which is much better than the one order of magnitude uncertainty used in the literature. We then reevaluate the water constraintprovided by CO, using the newer eddy diffusion coefficient. We considered two updated CO kinetic models, one model constrains the water enrichment (relative to solar) between 0.1 and 0.75, while the other one constrains the water enrichment between 7 and 23. This difference calls for a better assessment of CO kinetic models.

  14. New insights on Jupiter's deep water abundance from disequilibrium species

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, Dong; Gierasch, Peter J.; Lunine, Jonathan I.; Mousis, Olivier

    2015-04-01

    The bulk water abundance on Jupiter potentially constrains the planet's formation conditions. We improve the chemical constraints on Jupiter's deep water abundance in this paper. The eddy diffusion coefficient is used to model vertical mixing in planetary atmosphere, and based on laboratory studies dedicated to turbulent rotating convection, we propose a new formulation of the eddy diffusion coefficient for the troposphere of giant planets. The new formulation predicts a smooth transition from the slow rotation regime (near the equator) to the rapid rotation regime (near the pole). We estimate an uncertainty for the newly derived coefficient of less than 25%, which is much better than the one order of magnitude uncertainty used in the literature. We then reevaluate the water constraint provided by CO, using the newer eddy diffusion coefficient. We considered two updated CO kinetic models, one model constrains the water enrichment (relative to solar) between 0.1 and 0.75, while the other constrains the water enrichment between 3 and 11.

  15. Susceptibility of Four Tick Species Amblyomma americanum, Dermacentor variabilis, Ixodes scapularis, and Rhipicephalus sanguineus (Acari: Ixodidae) to Nootkatone

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The essential oil nootkatone has shown acaricidal activity on ticks. The toxicity of nootkatone was determined in laboratory assays using a vial coating technique against unfed nymphs of four Ixodid ticks: Amblyomma americanum L., Dermacentor variabilis (Say), Ixodes scapularis Say, and Rhipicepha...

  16. Mosquitoes of Zika Forest, Uganda: species composition and relative abundance.

    PubMed

    Kaddumukasa, M A; Mutebi, J-P; Lutwama, J J; Masembe, C; Akol, A M

    2014-01-01

    Mosquito collections were conducted in Zika Forest near Entebbe, Uganda, from July 2009 through June 2010 using CO2-baited light traps, ovitraps, and human-baited catches. In total, 163,790 adult mosquitoes belonging to 12 genera and 58 species were captured. Of these, 22 species (38%) were captured in Zika Forest for the first time. All the new records found in the forest in this study had previously been captured in other regions of Uganda, implying that they are native to the country and do not represent new introductions. More than 20 species previously collected in Zika Forest were not detected in our collections, and this may suggest a change in the mosquito fauna during the past 40 yr or variation in species composition from year to year. Arboviruses of public health importance have previously been isolated from >50% of the 58 mosquito species captured in Zika Forest, which suggests ahigh potential for transmission and maintenance of a wide range of arboviruses in Zika Forest.

  17. Differential tick burdens may explain differential Borrelia afzelii and Borrelia garinii infection rates among four, wild, rodent species in Hokkaido, Japan.

    PubMed

    Taylor, Kyle R; Takano, Ai; Konnai, Satoru; Shimozuru, Michito; Kawabata, Hiroki; Tsubota, Toshio

    2013-01-01

    The ecologies of Lyme disease Borrelia spp. are very specific to location, as they are dependent upon the spirochete species and genotypes, the vectors and the host vertebrates present. In Hokkaido, Japan, where two human pathogenic, Lyme disease Borrelia spp. are present, and human cases are reported annually, the ecologies have been poorly studied. Our goal was to determine whether variation in borrelial infection rates among rodent species sharing an environment, is due to immunological or ecological differences. To this end, we examined the relationships between tick burden and borrelial infection, by including examination of agreement between nested PCR, as a test for infection, and serology, as a test for exposure. We collected 868 rodents, comprised of four species commonly found in Hokkaido, and tested for infection rates with Borrelia spp. using PCR for the borrelial flaB gene, seroprevalence of Borrelia afzelii and Borrelia garinii using ELISA, and attachment of ticks by direct counts. We noted a correlation between differential nymph and larval burdens and the borrelial infection rates found among the four rodent species. Furthermore, there was significant correlation between infection and seroprevalence of B. afzelii and B. garinii (P<0.01), between infection and Ixodes persulcatus nymph burden (P<0.01), and between seroprevalence and I. persulcatus nymph burden (P<0.01). The close agreement among rodent species seroprevalences with infection rates and tick burdens suggest the differences in infection rates of Borrelia spp. may largely be a direct consequence of differential exposure to vectors.

  18. Estimating abundances of interacting species using morphological traits, foraging guilds, and habitat

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Dorazio, Robert M.; Connor, Edward F.

    2014-01-01

    We developed a statistical model to estimate the abundances of potentially interacting species encountered while conducting point-count surveys at a set of ecologically relevant locations - as in a metacommunity of species. In the model we assume that abundances of species with similar traits (e.g., body size) are potentially correlated and that these correlations, when present, may exist among all species or only among functionally related species (such as members of the same foraging guild). We also assume that species-specific abundances vary among locations owing to systematic and stochastic sources of heterogeneity. For example, if abundances differ among locations due to differences in habitat, then measures of habitat may be included in the model as covariates. Naturally, the quantitative effects of these covariates are assumed to differ among species. Our model also accounts for the effects of detectability on the observed counts of each species. This aspect of the model is especially important for rare or uncommon species that may be difficult to detect in community-level surveys. Estimating the detectability of each species requires sampling locations to be surveyed repeatedly using different observers or different visits of a single observer. As an illustration, we fitted models to species-specific counts of birds obtained while sampling an avian community during the breeding season. In the analysis we examined whether species abundances appeared to be correlated due to similarities in morphological measures (body mass, beak length, tarsus length, wing length, tail length) and whether these correlations existed among all species or only among species of the same foraging guild. We also used the model to estimate the effects of forested area on species abundances and the effects of sound power output (as measured by body size) on species detection probabilities.

  19. Species abundance in a forest community in South China: A case of poisson lognormal distribution

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Yin, Z.-Y.; Ren, H.; Zhang, Q.-M.; Peng, S.-L.; Guo, Q.-F.; Zhou, G.-Y.

    2005-01-01

    Case studies on Poisson lognormal distribution of species abundance have been rare, especially in forest communities. We propose a numerical method to fit the Poisson lognormal to the species abundance data at an evergreen mixed forest in the Dinghushan Biosphere Reserve, South China. Plants in the tree, shrub and herb layers in 25 quadrats of 20 m??20 m, 5 m??5 m, and 1 m??1 m were surveyed. Results indicated that: (i) for each layer, the observed species abundance with a similarly small median, mode, and a variance larger than the mean was reverse J-shaped and followed well the zero-truncated Poisson lognormal; (ii) the coefficient of variation, skewness and kurtosis of abundance, and two Poisson lognormal parameters (?? and ??) for shrub layer were closer to those for the herb layer than those for the tree layer; and (iii) from the tree to the shrub to the herb layer, the ?? and the coefficient of variation decreased, whereas diversity increased. We suggest that: (i) the species abundance distributions in the three layers reflects the overall community characteristics; (ii) the Poisson lognormal can describe the species abundance distribution in diverse communities with a few abundant species but many rare species; and (iii) 1/?? should be an alternative measure of diversity.

  20. Tick paralysis.

    PubMed

    Pecina, Cara Ann

    2012-11-01

    Tick paralysis is a rare, but readily treatable condition that if missed can lead to significant morbidity and death. The classic clinical presentation of tick paralysis is the development of an unsteady, ataxic type gait followed by an acute symmetric ascending flaccid paralysis. Symptoms generally begin within 2 to 6 days of tick attachment. If the tick continues to feed, the weakness ascends to the upper extremities over a matter of hours, followed by cranial nerve involvement. Due to the similarity in its presentation, tick paralysis is often misdiagnosed as Guillain-Barré's syndrome, particularly the Miller Fisher's subtype, given its cranial nerve involvement. However, the weakness seen in tick paralysis progresses more quickly than what is generally seen in Guillain-Barré's syndrome and the protein concentration is not elevated in the cerebrospinal fluid. The mainstay of treatment for tick paralysis is tick removal. The time to full neurologic recovery after tick removal is estimated to be around 1.5 days with initial improvement generally within hours. PMID:23677663

  1. Ticks on dogs and cats: a pet owner-based survey in a rural town in northeastern Switzerland.

    PubMed

    Eichenberger, Ramon Marc; Deplazes, Peter; Mathis, Alexander

    2015-04-01

    Changes in the endemic foci of tick populations and invasions of tick species to new areas have become evident in Europe, leading to changes in the epidemiology of tick-transmitted diseases. However, data about tick infestations of pet animals are limited. Following the recent identification of a new focus of canine babesiosis in northeastern Switzerland, we investigated the occurrence of tick vectors in this region by using a pet owner-based sampling strategy. All dog owners in a rural town were sent postal requests to send ticks from their dogs and cats over two consecutive years, beginning in April 2012. In total 3003 ticks were submitted for identification from 249 dogs (approximately 20% of the resident dog population) and from 117 cats. Ixodes ricinus was the most abundant species identified in 96.8% (n=2124) and 74.3% (n=601) of the individual samples submitted from dogs and cats, respectively. Two other tick species, I. hexagonus and Dermacentor reticulatus, were recorded on both host species, with host infestation prevalences below 2%. On cats (but not on dogs), as many as 24.0% (n=194) of the specimens were identified as a fourth tick species, I. trianguliceps. Overall, 93.5% of the ticks were adults (93.8% and 93.0% in dogs and cats), 4.4% nymphs (5.7% in dogs and 1% in cats) and 2% larvae (0.5% and 6.0% in dogs and cats), respectively. The highest infestation intensity was 49 I. ricinus ticks from an individual dog. However, 55.6% of the submissions from dogs and 24.8% from cats contained only one tick. This survey demonstrated that pet owners can contribute to a cost-effective tick surveillance and identified a new tick focus of D. reticulatus. The finding of I. trianguliceps exclusively on cats might be related to behavioural traits of the cats or to a more readily detection of these very small ticks during petting by their owners.

  2. Lactobacillus and Pediococcus species richness and relative abundance in the vagina of rhesus monkeys (Macaca mulatta)

    PubMed Central

    Gravett, Michael G.; Jin, Ling; Pavlova, Sylvia I.; Tao, Lin

    2012-01-01

    Background The rhesus monkey is an important animal model to study human vaginal health to which lactic acid bacteria play a significant role. However, the vaginal lactic acid bacterial species richness and relative abundance in rhesus monkeys is largely unknown. Methods Vaginal swab samples were aseptically obtained from 200 reproductive aged female rhesus monkeys. Following Rogosa agar plating, single bacterial colonies representing different morphotypes were isolated and analyzed for whole-cell protein profile, species-specifc PCR, and 16S rRNA gene sequence. Results A total of 510 Lactobacillus strains of 17 species and one Pediococcus acidilactici were identified. The most abundant species was L. reuteri, which colonized the vaginas of 86% monkeys. L. johnsonii was the second most abundant species, which colonized 36% of monkeys. The majority of monkeys were colonized by multiple Lactobacillus species. Conclusions The vaginas of rhesus monkeys are frequently colonized by multiple Lactobacillus species, dominated by L. reuteri. PMID:22429090

  3. Urbanization Level and Woodland Size Are Major Drivers of Woodpecker Species Richness and Abundance

    PubMed Central

    Myczko, Łukasz; Rosin, Zuzanna M.; Skórka, Piotr; Tryjanowski, Piotr

    2014-01-01

    Urbanization is a process globally responsible for loss of biodiversity and for biological homogenization. Urbanization may have a direct negative impact on species behaviour and indirect effects on species populations through alterations of their habitats, for example patch size and habitat quality. Woodpeckers are species potentially susceptible to urbanization. These birds are mostly forest specialists and the development of urban areas in former forests may be an important factor influencing their richness and abundance, but documented examples are rare. In this study we investigated how woodpeckers responded to changes in forest habitats as a consequence of urbanization, namely size and isolation of habitat patches, and other within-patch characteristics. We selected 42 woodland patches in a gradient from a semi-natural rural landscape to the city centre of Poznań (Western Poland) in spring 2010. Both species richness and abundance of woodpeckers correlated positively to woodland patch area and negatively to increasing urbanization. Abundance of woodpeckers was also positively correlated with shrub cover and percentage of deciduous tree species. Furthermore, species richness and abundance of woodpeckers were highest at moderate values of canopy openness. Ordination analyses confirmed that urbanization level and woodland patch area were variables contributing most to species abundance in the woodpecker community. Similar results were obtained in presence-absence models for particular species. Thus, to sustain woodpecker species within cities it is important to keep woodland patches large, multi-layered and rich in deciduous tree species. PMID:24740155

  4. Urbanization level and woodland size are major drivers of woodpecker species richness and abundance.

    PubMed

    Myczko, Lukasz; Rosin, Zuzanna M; Skórka, Piotr; Tryjanowski, Piotr

    2014-01-01

    Urbanization is a process globally responsible for loss of biodiversity and for biological homogenization. Urbanization may have a direct negative impact on species behaviour and indirect effects on species populations through alterations of their habitats, for example patch size and habitat quality. Woodpeckers are species potentially susceptible to urbanization. These birds are mostly forest specialists and the development of urban areas in former forests may be an important factor influencing their richness and abundance, but documented examples are rare. In this study we investigated how woodpeckers responded to changes in forest habitats as a consequence of urbanization, namely size and isolation of habitat patches, and other within-patch characteristics. We selected 42 woodland patches in a gradient from a semi-natural rural landscape to the city centre of Poznań (Western Poland) in spring 2010. Both species richness and abundance of woodpeckers correlated positively to woodland patch area and negatively to increasing urbanization. Abundance of woodpeckers was also positively correlated with shrub cover and percentage of deciduous tree species. Furthermore, species richness and abundance of woodpeckers were highest at moderate values of canopy openness. Ordination analyses confirmed that urbanization level and woodland patch area were variables contributing most to species abundance in the woodpecker community. Similar results were obtained in presence-absence models for particular species. Thus, to sustain woodpecker species within cities it is important to keep woodland patches large, multi-layered and rich in deciduous tree species.

  5. Associations of forest cover, fragment area, and connectivity with neotropical understory bird species richness and abundance.

    PubMed

    Martensen, Alexandre Camargo; Ribeiro, Milton Cezar; Banks-Leite, Cristina; Prado, Paulo Inácio; Metzger, Jean Paul

    2012-12-01

    Theoretical and empirical studies demonstrate that the total amount of forest and the size and connectivity of fragments have nonlinear effects on species survival. We tested how habitat amount and configuration affect understory bird species richness and abundance. We used mist nets (almost 34,000 net hours) to sample birds in 53 Atlantic Forest fragments in southeastern Brazil. Fragments were distributed among 3 10,800-ha landscapes. The remaining forest in these landscapes was below (10% forest cover), similar to (30%), and above (50%) the theoretical fragmentation threshold (approximately 30%) below which the effects of fragmentation should be intensified. Species-richness estimates were significantly higher (F= 3715, p = 0.00) where 50% of the forest remained, which suggests a species occurrence threshold of 30-50% forest, which is higher than usually occurs (<30%). Relations between forest cover and species richness differed depending on species sensitivity to forest conversion and fragmentation. For less sensitive species, species richness decreased as forest cover increased, whereas for highly sensitive species the opposite occurred. For sensitive species, species richness and the amount of forest cover were positively related, particularly when forest cover was 30-50%. Fragment size and connectivity were related to species richness and abundance in all landscapes, not just below the 30% threshold. Where 10% of the forest remained, fragment size was more related to species richness and abundance than connectivity. However, the relation between connectivity and species richness and abundance was stronger where 30% of the landscape was forested. Where 50% of the landscape was forested, fragment size and connectivity were both related to species richness and abundance. Our results demonstrated a rapid loss of species at relatively high levels of forest cover (30-50%). Highly sensitive species were 3-4 times more common above the 30-50% threshold than below it

  6. Detection of tick-borne encephalitis virus in I. ricinus ticks collected from autumn migratory birds in Latvia.

    PubMed

    Kazarina, Alisa; Japiņa, Kristīne; Keišs, Oskars; Salmane, Ineta; Bandere, Dace; Capligina, Valentina; Ranka, Renāte

    2015-03-01

    Birds have a potential of spreading ticks via bird migration routes. In this study, we screened 170 ticks removed during autumn 2010 from 55 birds belonging to 10 species for the presence of tick-borne encephalitis virus (TBEV). In total, TBEV RNA was detected in 14% of I. ricinus tick samples obtained from different birds species. The results of this study indicate the possible role of migrating birds in the dispersal of TBEV-infected ticks along the southward migration route.

  7. Abundance of minor ion species at Mars: ASPERA-3 observations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhang, Yiteng; Nilsson, Hans; Barabash, Stas; Li, Lei

    2012-07-01

    The main species at Mars are O+, O2+, CO2+, while there are also some minor species. This article successfully separates minor species of O++, He+ and H2+ with about 12eV by integrating from two and a half years ASPERA-3 data on Mars Express and by integrating and taking some corrections and data processing. At the same time some space statistic Statistics of these Mars ions and estimating are taken place. The result indicates O++ ions density reduce quickly in the region without sunlight, and have moreis higher at subsolar than in the high alatitude place,. and reduces quickly in the region without sunlight. He+ and H2+ have similar distribution in space mainly above in the high altitude ionosphere, and relatively reduce sparse in the midnight space. O++ and He+ have a comparable volume density about 0.1% of O+, and H2+ is muchone order of magnitude lowerless for one order. Our results imply that O++ ions in the martian space are mainly the product of phtoionization in the ionosphere, while H2+ and He+ might also be originated in the planet.

  8. Ticks infesting humans in Northern Misiones, Argentina.

    PubMed

    Lamattina, Daniela; Nava, Santiago

    2016-01-01

    This work presents records of ticks infesting humans in northern Misiones Province, Argentina. Also, notes on potential transmission of tick-borne pathogens are included. A total of 282 ticks attached to researchers were collected and identified by their morphological characters. Eight tick species were found: Amblyomma brasiliense, Amblyomma coelebs, Amblyomma dubitatum, Amblyomma incisum, Amblyomma ovale, Haemaphysalis juxtakochi, Rhipicephalus sanguineus and Rhipicephalus microplus. Some of these species as A. dubitatum, A. ovale and R. sanguineus have been found infected with spotted fever group rickettsiae pathogenic to humans in Brazil and Argentina. The potential role as vectors of humans pathogens of the ticks found attached to humans in this study is discussed. PMID:27135846

  9. Ticks infesting humans in Northern Misiones, Argentina.

    PubMed

    Lamattina, Daniela; Nava, Santiago

    2016-01-01

    This work presents records of ticks infesting humans in northern Misiones Province, Argentina. Also, notes on potential transmission of tick-borne pathogens are included. A total of 282 ticks attached to researchers were collected and identified by their morphological characters. Eight tick species were found: Amblyomma brasiliense, Amblyomma coelebs, Amblyomma dubitatum, Amblyomma incisum, Amblyomma ovale, Haemaphysalis juxtakochi, Rhipicephalus sanguineus and Rhipicephalus microplus. Some of these species as A. dubitatum, A. ovale and R. sanguineus have been found infected with spotted fever group rickettsiae pathogenic to humans in Brazil and Argentina. The potential role as vectors of humans pathogens of the ticks found attached to humans in this study is discussed.

  10. Unveiling the species-rank abundance distribution by generalizing the Good-Turing sample coverage theory.

    PubMed

    Chao, Anne; Hsieh, T C; Chazdon, Robin L; Colwell, Robert K; Gotelli, Nicholas J

    2015-05-01

    Based on a sample of individuals, we focus on inferring the vector of species relative abundance of an entire assemblage and propose a novel estimator of the complete species-rank abundance distribution (RAD). Nearly all previous estimators of the RAD use the conventional "plug-in" estimator Pi (sample relative abundance) of the true relative abundance pi of species i. Because most biodiversity samples are incomplete, the plug-in estimators are applied only to the subset of species that are detected in the sample. Using the concept of sample coverage and its generalization, we propose a new statistical framework to estimate the complete RAD by separately adjusting the sample relative abundances for the set of species detected in the sample and estimating the relative abundances for the set of species undetected in the sample but inferred to be present in the assemblage. We first show that P, is a positively biased estimator of pi for species detected in the sample, and that the degree of bias increases with increasing relative rarity of each species. We next derive a method to adjust the sample relative abundance to reduce the positive bias inherent in j. The adjustment method provides a nonparametric resolution to the longstanding challenge of characterizing the relationship between the true relative abundance in the entire assemblage and the observed relative abundance in a sample. Finally, we propose a method to estimate the true relative abundances of the undetected species based on a lower bound of the number of undetected species. We then combine the adjusted RAD for the detected species and the estimated RAD for the undetected species to obtain the complete RAD estimator. Simulation results show that the proposed RAD curve can unveil the true RAD and is more accurate than the empirical RAD. We also extend our method to incidence data. Our formulas and estimators are illustrated using empirical data sets from surveys of forest spiders (for abundance data) and

  11. Species-abundance--seed-size patterns within a plant community affected by grazing disturbance.

    PubMed

    Wu, Gao-lin; Shang, Zhan-huan; Zhu, Yuan-jun; Ding, Lu-ming; Wang, Dong

    2015-04-01

    Seed size has been advanced as a key factor that influences the dynamics of plant communities, but there are few empirical or theoretical predictions of how community dynamics progress based on seed size patterns. Information on the abundance of adults, seedlings, soil seed banks, seed rains, and the seed mass of 96 species was collected in alpine meadows of the Qinghai-Tibetan Plateau (China), which had different levels of grazing disturbance. The relationships between seed-mass-abundance patterns for adults, seedlings, the soil seed bank, and seed rain in the plant community were evaluated using regression models. Results showed that grazing levels affected the relationship between seed size and abundance properties of adult species, seedlings, and the soil seed bank, suggesting that there is a shift in seed-size--species-abundance relationships as a response to the grazing gradient. Grazing had no effect on the pattern of seed-size-seed-rain-abundance at four grazing levels. Grazing also had little effect on the pattern of seed-size--species-abundance and pattern of seed-size--soil-seed-bank-abundance in meadows with no grazing, light grazing, and moderate grazing), but there was a significant negative effect in meadows with heavy grazing. Grazing had little effect on the pattern of seed-size--seedling-abundance with no grazing, but had significant negative effects with light, moderate, and heavy grazing, and the |r| values increased with grazing levels. This indicated that increasing grazing pressure enhanced the advantage of smaller-seeded species in terms of the abundances of adult species, seedlings, and soil seed banks, whereas only the light grazing level promoted the seed rain abundance of larger-seeded species in the plant communities. This study suggests that grazing disturbances are favorable for increasing the species abundance for smaller-seeded species but not for the larger-seeded species in an alpine meadow community. Hence, there is a clear

  12. Distribution pattern and number of ticks on lizards.

    PubMed

    Dudek, Krzysztof; Skórka, Piotr; Sajkowska, Zofia Anna; Ekner-Grzyb, Anna; Dudek, Monika; Tryjanowski, Piotr

    2016-02-01

    The success of ectoparasites depends primarily on the site of attachment and body condition of their hosts. Ticks usually tend to aggregate on vertebrate hosts in specific areas, but the distribution pattern may depend on host body size and condition, sex, life stage or skin morphology. Here, we studied the distribution of ticks on lizards and tested the following hypothesis: occurrence or high abundance of ticks is confined with body parts with smaller scales and larger interscalar length because such sites should provide ticks with superior attachment conditions. This study was performed in field conditions in central Poland in 2008-2011. In total, 500 lizards (Lacerta agilis) were caught and 839 ticks (Ixodes ricinus, larvae and nymphs) were collected from them. Using generalised linear mixed models, we found that the ticks were most abundant on forelimbs and their axillae, with 90% of ticks attached there. This part of the lizard body and the region behind the hindlimb were covered by the smallest scales with relatively wide gaps between them. This does not fully support our hypothesis that ticks prefer locations with easy access to skin between scales, because it does not explain why so few ticks were in the hindlimb area. We found that the abundance of ticks was positively correlated with lizard body size index (snout-vent length). Tick abundance was also higher in male and mature lizards than in female and young individuals. Autotomy had no effect on tick abundance. We found no correlation between tick size and lizard morphology, sex, autotomy and body size index. The probability of occurrence of dead ticks was positively linked with the total number of ticks on the lizard but there was no relationship between dead tick presence and lizard size, sex or age. Thus lizard body size and sex are the major factors affecting the abundance of ticks, and these parasites are distributed nearly exclusively on the host's forelimbs and their axillae.

  13. Distribution pattern and number of ticks on lizards.

    PubMed

    Dudek, Krzysztof; Skórka, Piotr; Sajkowska, Zofia Anna; Ekner-Grzyb, Anna; Dudek, Monika; Tryjanowski, Piotr

    2016-02-01

    The success of ectoparasites depends primarily on the site of attachment and body condition of their hosts. Ticks usually tend to aggregate on vertebrate hosts in specific areas, but the distribution pattern may depend on host body size and condition, sex, life stage or skin morphology. Here, we studied the distribution of ticks on lizards and tested the following hypothesis: occurrence or high abundance of ticks is confined with body parts with smaller scales and larger interscalar length because such sites should provide ticks with superior attachment conditions. This study was performed in field conditions in central Poland in 2008-2011. In total, 500 lizards (Lacerta agilis) were caught and 839 ticks (Ixodes ricinus, larvae and nymphs) were collected from them. Using generalised linear mixed models, we found that the ticks were most abundant on forelimbs and their axillae, with 90% of ticks attached there. This part of the lizard body and the region behind the hindlimb were covered by the smallest scales with relatively wide gaps between them. This does not fully support our hypothesis that ticks prefer locations with easy access to skin between scales, because it does not explain why so few ticks were in the hindlimb area. We found that the abundance of ticks was positively correlated with lizard body size index (snout-vent length). Tick abundance was also higher in male and mature lizards than in female and young individuals. Autotomy had no effect on tick abundance. We found no correlation between tick size and lizard morphology, sex, autotomy and body size index. The probability of occurrence of dead ticks was positively linked with the total number of ticks on the lizard but there was no relationship between dead tick presence and lizard size, sex or age. Thus lizard body size and sex are the major factors affecting the abundance of ticks, and these parasites are distributed nearly exclusively on the host's forelimbs and their axillae. PMID:26520053

  14. Species Composition and Abundance of Stink Bugs (Hemiptera: Heteroptera: Pentatomidae) in Minnesota Field Corn.

    PubMed

    Koch, Robert L; Pahs, Tiffany

    2015-04-01

    In response to concerns of increasing significance of stink bugs (Hemiptera: Heteroptera: Pentatomidae) in northern states, a survey was conducted over 2 yr in Minnesota to characterize the Pentatomidae associated with field corn, Zea mays L. Halyomorpha halys (Stål), an exotic species, was not detected in this survey, despite continued detection of this species as an invader of human-made structures in Minnesota. Five species of Pentatomidae (four herbivorous; one predatory) were collected from corn. Across years, Euschistus variolarius (Palisot de Beauvois) and Euschistus servus euschistoides (Vollenhoven) had the greatest relative abundances and frequencies of detection. In 2012, the abundance of herbivorous species exceeded 25 nymphs and adults per 100 plants (i.e., an economic threshold) in 0.48% of fields. However, the abundance of herbivorous species did not reach economic levels in any fields sampled in 2013. The frequency of detection of herbivorous species and ratio of nymphs to adults was highest during reproductive growth stages of corn. The predator species, Podisus maculiventris (Say), was detected in 0 to 0.32% of fields. These results provide baseline information on the species composition and abundance of Pentatomidae in Minnesota field corn, which will be necessary for documentation of changes to this fauna as a result of the invasion of H. halys and to determine if some native species continue to increase in abundance in field crops.

  15. Species Composition and Abundance of Stink Bugs (Hemiptera: Heteroptera: Pentatomidae) in Minnesota Field Corn.

    PubMed

    Koch, Robert L; Pahs, Tiffany

    2015-04-01

    In response to concerns of increasing significance of stink bugs (Hemiptera: Heteroptera: Pentatomidae) in northern states, a survey was conducted over 2 yr in Minnesota to characterize the Pentatomidae associated with field corn, Zea mays L. Halyomorpha halys (Stål), an exotic species, was not detected in this survey, despite continued detection of this species as an invader of human-made structures in Minnesota. Five species of Pentatomidae (four herbivorous; one predatory) were collected from corn. Across years, Euschistus variolarius (Palisot de Beauvois) and Euschistus servus euschistoides (Vollenhoven) had the greatest relative abundances and frequencies of detection. In 2012, the abundance of herbivorous species exceeded 25 nymphs and adults per 100 plants (i.e., an economic threshold) in 0.48% of fields. However, the abundance of herbivorous species did not reach economic levels in any fields sampled in 2013. The frequency of detection of herbivorous species and ratio of nymphs to adults was highest during reproductive growth stages of corn. The predator species, Podisus maculiventris (Say), was detected in 0 to 0.32% of fields. These results provide baseline information on the species composition and abundance of Pentatomidae in Minnesota field corn, which will be necessary for documentation of changes to this fauna as a result of the invasion of H. halys and to determine if some native species continue to increase in abundance in field crops. PMID:26313176

  16. A Common Scaling Rule for Abundance, Energetics, and Production of Parasitic and Free-Living Species

    PubMed Central

    Hechinger, Ryan F.; Lafferty, Kevin D.; Dobson, Andy P.; Brown, James H.; Kuris, Armand M.

    2011-01-01

    The metabolic theory of ecology uses the scaling of metabolism with body size and temperature to explain the causes and consequences of species abundance. However, the theory and its empirical tests have never simultaneously examined parasites alongside free-living species. This is unfortunate because parasites represent at least half of species diversity. We show that metabolic scaling theory could not account for the abundance of parasitic or free-living species in three estuarine food webs until accounting for trophic dynamics. Analyses then revealed that the abundance of all species uniformly scaled with body mass to the −¾ power. This result indicates “production equivalence,” where biomass production within trophic levels is invariant of body size across all species and functional groups: invertebrate or vertebrate, ectothermic or endothermic, and free-living or parasitic. PMID:21778398

  17. A common scaling rule for abundance, energetics, and production of parasitic and free-living species

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Hechinger, Ryan F.; Lafferty, Kevin D.; Dobson, Andy P.; Brown, James H.; Kuris, Armand M.

    2011-01-01

    The metabolic theory of ecology uses the scaling of metabolism with body size and temperature to explain the causes and consequences of species abundance. However, the theory and its empirical tests have never simultaneously examined parasites alongside free-living species. This is unfortunate because parasites represent at least half of species diversity. We show that metabolic scaling theory could not account for the abundance of parasitic or free-living species in three estuarine food webs until accounting for trophic dynamics. Analyses then revealed that the abundance of all species uniformly scaled with body mass to the - 3/4 power. This result indicates "production equivalence," where biomass production within trophic levels is invariant of body size across all species and functional groups: invertebrate or vertebrate, ectothermic or endothermic, and free-living or parasitic.

  18. Accounting for dispersal and biotic interactions to disentangle the drivers of species distributions and their abundances

    PubMed Central

    Boulangeat, Isabelle; Gravel, Dominique; Thuiller, Wilfried

    2014-01-01

    Although abiotic factors, together with dispersal and biotic interactions, are often suggested to explain the distribution of species and their abundances, species distribution models usually focus on abiotic factors only. We propose an integrative framework linking ecological theory, empirical data and statistical models to understand the distribution of species and their abundances together with the underlying community assembly dynamics. We illustrate our approach with 21 plant species in the French Alps. We show that a spatially nested modelling framework significantly improves the model’s performance and that the spatial variations of species presence–absence and abundances are predominantly explained by different factors. We also show that incorporating abiotic, dispersal and biotic factors into the same model bring new insights to our understanding of community assembly. This approach, at the crossroads between community ecology and biogeography, is a promising avenue for a better understanding of species co-existence and biodiversity distribution. PMID:22462813

  19. Changing distributions of ticks: causes and consequences.

    PubMed

    Léger, Elsa; Vourc'h, Gwenaël; Vial, Laurence; Chevillon, Christine; McCoy, Karen D

    2013-02-01

    Today, we are witnessing changes in the spatial distribution and abundance of many species, including ticks and their associated pathogens. Evidence that these changes are primarily due to climate change, habitat modifications, and the globalisation of human activities are accumulating. Changes in the distribution of ticks and their invasion into new regions can have numerous consequences including modifications in their ecological characteristics and those of endemic species, impacts on the dynamics of local host populations and the emergence of human and livestock disease. Here, we review the principal causes for distributional shifts in tick populations and their consequences in terms of the ecological attributes of the species in question (i.e. phenotypic and genetic responses), pathogen transmission and disease epidemiology. We also describe different methodological approaches currently used to assess and predict such changes and their consequences. We finish with a discussion of new research avenues to develop in order to improve our understanding of these host-vector-pathogen interactions in the context of a changing world. PMID:23015121

  20. Changing distributions of ticks: causes and consequences.

    PubMed

    Léger, Elsa; Vourc'h, Gwenaël; Vial, Laurence; Chevillon, Christine; McCoy, Karen D

    2013-02-01

    Today, we are witnessing changes in the spatial distribution and abundance of many species, including ticks and their associated pathogens. Evidence that these changes are primarily due to climate change, habitat modifications, and the globalisation of human activities are accumulating. Changes in the distribution of ticks and their invasion into new regions can have numerous consequences including modifications in their ecological characteristics and those of endemic species, impacts on the dynamics of local host populations and the emergence of human and livestock disease. Here, we review the principal causes for distributional shifts in tick populations and their consequences in terms of the ecological attributes of the species in question (i.e. phenotypic and genetic responses), pathogen transmission and disease epidemiology. We also describe different methodological approaches currently used to assess and predict such changes and their consequences. We finish with a discussion of new research avenues to develop in order to improve our understanding of these host-vector-pathogen interactions in the context of a changing world.

  1. The Evolving Medical and Veterinary Importance of the Gulf Coast tick (Acari: Ixodidae).

    PubMed

    Paddock, Christopher D; Goddard, Jerome

    2015-03-01

    Amblyomma maculatum Koch (the Gulf Coast tick) is a three-host, ixodid tick that is distributed throughout much of the southeastern and south-central United States, as well as several countries throughout Central and South America. A considerable amount of scientific literature followed the original description of A. maculatum in 1844; nonetheless, the Gulf Coast tick was not recognized as a vector of any known pathogen of animals or humans for >150 years. It is now identified as the principal vector of Hepatozoon americanum, the agent responsible for American canine hepatozoonosis, and Rickettsia parkeri, the cause of an emerging, eschar-associated spotted fever group rickettsiosis identified throughout much of the Western Hemisphere. Coincident with these discoveries has been recognition that the geographical distribution of A. maculatum in the United States is far more extensive than described 70 yr ago, supporting the idea that range and abundance of certain tick species, particularly those with diverse host preferences, are not fixed in time or space, and may change over relatively short intervals. Renewed interest in the Gulf Coast tick reinforces the notion that the perceived importance of a particular tick species to human or animal health can be relatively fluid, and may shift dramatically with changes in the distribution and abundance of the arthropod, its vertebrate hosts, or the microbial agents that transit among these organisms.

  2. The effect of soil-borne pathogens depends on the abundance of host tree species.

    PubMed

    Liu, Yu; Fang, Suqin; Chesson, Peter; He, Fangliang

    2015-01-01

    The overarching issue for understanding biodiversity maintenance is how fitness advantages accrue to a species as it becomes rare, as this is the defining feature of stable coexistence mechanisms. Without these fitness advantages, average fitness differences between species will lead to exclusion. However, empirical evidence is lacking, especially for forests, due to the difficulty of manipulating density on a large-enough scale. Here we took advantage of naturally occurring contrasts in abundance between sites of a subtropical tree species, Ormosia glaberrima, to demonstrate how low-density fitness advantages accrue by the Janzen-Connell mechanism. The results showed that soil pathogens suppressed seedling recruitment of O. glaberrima when it is abundant but had little effect on the seedlings when it is at low density due to the lack of pathogens. The difference in seedling survival between abundant and low-density sites demonstrates strong dependence of pathogenic effect on the abundance of host species. PMID:26632594

  3. The effect of soil-borne pathogens depends on the abundance of host tree species

    PubMed Central

    Liu, Yu; Fang, Suqin; Chesson, Peter; He, Fangliang

    2015-01-01

    The overarching issue for understanding biodiversity maintenance is how fitness advantages accrue to a species as it becomes rare, as this is the defining feature of stable coexistence mechanisms. Without these fitness advantages, average fitness differences between species will lead to exclusion. However, empirical evidence is lacking, especially for forests, due to the difficulty of manipulating density on a large-enough scale. Here we took advantage of naturally occurring contrasts in abundance between sites of a subtropical tree species, Ormosia glaberrima, to demonstrate how low-density fitness advantages accrue by the Janzen–Connell mechanism. The results showed that soil pathogens suppressed seedling recruitment of O. glaberrima when it is abundant but had little effect on the seedlings when it is at low density due to the lack of pathogens. The difference in seedling survival between abundant and low-density sites demonstrates strong dependence of pathogenic effect on the abundance of host species. PMID:26632594

  4. [Tick-borne encephalitis viral titers of engorged adult Ixodes persulcatus ticks].

    PubMed

    Korenberg, E I; Pchelkina, A A

    1984-01-01

    The results of titration of adult virus infected ticks of Ixodes persulcatus are given. The ticks were collected in various natural nidi of tick-borne encephalitis and individually fed on laboratory animals. The results of titration of ticks of the same species primarily infected on laboratory animals during virusemia are given as well. Changes of the virus titer in engorged ticks were observed till the egg production. A role of the presence of virus in engorged ticks for the process of the agent circulation in natural nidi is discussed.

  5. Changes in the Relative Abundance of Two Saccharomyces Species from Oak Forests to Wine Fermentations

    PubMed Central

    Dashko, Sofia; Liu, Ping; Volk, Helena; Butinar, Lorena; Piškur, Jure; Fay, Justin C.

    2016-01-01

    Saccharomyces cerevisiae and its sibling species Saccharomyces paradoxus are known to inhabit temperate arboreal habitats across the globe. Despite their sympatric distribution in the wild, S. cerevisiae is predominantly associated with human fermentations. The apparent ecological differentiation of these species is particularly striking in Europe where S. paradoxus is abundant in forests and S. cerevisiae is abundant in vineyards. However, ecological differences may be confounded with geographic differences in species abundance. To compare the distribution and abundance of these two species we isolated Saccharomyces strains from over 1200 samples taken from vineyard and forest habitats in Slovenia. We isolated numerous strains of S. cerevisiae and S. paradoxus, as well as a small number of Saccharomyces kudriavzevii strains, from both vineyard and forest environments. We find S. cerevisiae less abundant than S. paradoxus on oak trees both within and outside the vineyard, but more abundant on grapevines and associated substrates. Analysis of the uncultured microbiome shows, that both S. cerevisiae and S. paradoxus are rare species in soil and bark samples, but can be much more common in grape must. In contrast to S. paradoxus, European strains of S. cerevisiae have acquired multiple traits thought to be important for life in the vineyard and dominance of wine fermentations. We conclude, that S. cerevisiae and S. paradoxus currently share both vineyard and non-vineyard habitats in Slovenia and we discuss factors relevant to their global distribution and relative abundance. PMID:26941733

  6. Changes in the Relative Abundance of Two Saccharomyces Species from Oak Forests to Wine Fermentations.

    PubMed

    Dashko, Sofia; Liu, Ping; Volk, Helena; Butinar, Lorena; Piškur, Jure; Fay, Justin C

    2016-01-01

    Saccharomyces cerevisiae and its sibling species Saccharomyces paradoxus are known to inhabit temperate arboreal habitats across the globe. Despite their sympatric distribution in the wild, S. cerevisiae is predominantly associated with human fermentations. The apparent ecological differentiation of these species is particularly striking in Europe where S. paradoxus is abundant in forests and S. cerevisiae is abundant in vineyards. However, ecological differences may be confounded with geographic differences in species abundance. To compare the distribution and abundance of these two species we isolated Saccharomyces strains from over 1200 samples taken from vineyard and forest habitats in Slovenia. We isolated numerous strains of S. cerevisiae and S. paradoxus, as well as a small number of Saccharomyces kudriavzevii strains, from both vineyard and forest environments. We find S. cerevisiae less abundant than S. paradoxus on oak trees both within and outside the vineyard, but more abundant on grapevines and associated substrates. Analysis of the uncultured microbiome shows, that both S. cerevisiae and S. paradoxus are rare species in soil and bark samples, but can be much more common in grape must. In contrast to S. paradoxus, European strains of S. cerevisiae have acquired multiple traits thought to be important for life in the vineyard and dominance of wine fermentations. We conclude, that S. cerevisiae and S. paradoxus currently share both vineyard and non-vineyard habitats in Slovenia and we discuss factors relevant to their global distribution and relative abundance. PMID:26941733

  7. Molecular Ecological Insights into Neotropical Bird-Tick Interactions.

    PubMed

    Miller, Matthew J; Esser, Helen J; Loaiza, Jose R; Herre, Edward Allen; Aguilar, Celestino; Quintero, Diomedes; Alvarez, Eric; Bermingham, Eldredge

    2016-01-01

    In the tropics, ticks parasitize many classes of vertebrate hosts. However, because many tropical tick species are only identifiable in the adult stage, and these adults usually parasitize mammals, most attention on the ecology of tick-host interactions has focused on mammalian hosts. In contrast, immature Neotropical ticks are often found on wild birds, yet difficulties in identifying immatures hinder studies of birds' role in tropical tick ecology and tick-borne disease transmission. In Panama, we found immature ticks on 227 out of 3,498 individually-sampled birds representing 93 host species (24% of the bird species sampled, and 13% of the Panamanian land bird fauna). Tick parasitism rates did not vary with rainfall or temperature, but did vary significantly with several host ecological traits. Likewise, Neotropical-Nearctic migratory birds were significantly less likely to be infested than resident species. Using a molecular library developed from morphologically-identified adult ticks specifically for this study, we identified eleven tick species parasitizing birds, indicating that a substantial portion of the Panamanian avian species pool is parasitized by a diversity of tick species. Tick species that most commonly parasitized birds had the widest diversity of avian hosts, suggesting that immature tick species are opportunistic bird parasites. Although certain avian ecological traits are positively associated with parasitism, we found no evidence that individual tick species show specificity to particular avian host ecological traits. Finally, our data suggest that the four principal vectors of Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever in the Neotropics rarely, if ever, parasitize Panamanian birds. However, other tick species that harbor newly-discovered rickettsial parasites of unknown pathogenicity are frequently found on these birds. Given our discovery of broad interaction between Panamanian tick and avian biodiversity, future work on tick ecology and the dynamics of

  8. Molecular Ecological Insights into Neotropical Bird–Tick Interactions

    PubMed Central

    Esser, Helen J.; Loaiza, Jose R.; Herre, Edward Allen; Aguilar, Celestino; Quintero, Diomedes; Alvarez, Eric; Bermingham, Eldredge

    2016-01-01

    In the tropics, ticks parasitize many classes of vertebrate hosts. However, because many tropical tick species are only identifiable in the adult stage, and these adults usually parasitize mammals, most attention on the ecology of tick-host interactions has focused on mammalian hosts. In contrast, immature Neotropical ticks are often found on wild birds, yet difficulties in identifying immatures hinder studies of birds’ role in tropical tick ecology and tick-borne disease transmission. In Panama, we found immature ticks on 227 out of 3,498 individually–sampled birds representing 93 host species (24% of the bird species sampled, and 13% of the Panamanian land bird fauna). Tick parasitism rates did not vary with rainfall or temperature, but did vary significantly with several host ecological traits. Likewise, Neotropical–Nearctic migratory birds were significantly less likely to be infested than resident species. Using a molecular library developed from morphologically–identified adult ticks specifically for this study, we identified eleven tick species parasitizing birds, indicating that a substantial portion of the Panamanian avian species pool is parasitized by a diversity of tick species. Tick species that most commonly parasitized birds had the widest diversity of avian hosts, suggesting that immature tick species are opportunistic bird parasites. Although certain avian ecological traits are positively associated with parasitism, we found no evidence that individual tick species show specificity to particular avian host ecological traits. Finally, our data suggest that the four principal vectors of Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever in the Neotropics rarely, if ever, parasitize Panamanian birds. However, other tick species that harbor newly–discovered rickettsial parasites of unknown pathogenicity are frequently found on these birds. Given our discovery of broad interaction between Panamanian tick and avian biodiversity, future work on tick ecology and the

  9. Molecular Ecological Insights into Neotropical Bird-Tick Interactions.

    PubMed

    Miller, Matthew J; Esser, Helen J; Loaiza, Jose R; Herre, Edward Allen; Aguilar, Celestino; Quintero, Diomedes; Alvarez, Eric; Bermingham, Eldredge

    2016-01-01

    In the tropics, ticks parasitize many classes of vertebrate hosts. However, because many tropical tick species are only identifiable in the adult stage, and these adults usually parasitize mammals, most attention on the ecology of tick-host interactions has focused on mammalian hosts. In contrast, immature Neotropical ticks are often found on wild birds, yet difficulties in identifying immatures hinder studies of birds' role in tropical tick ecology and tick-borne disease transmission. In Panama, we found immature ticks on 227 out of 3,498 individually-sampled birds representing 93 host species (24% of the bird species sampled, and 13% of the Panamanian land bird fauna). Tick parasitism rates did not vary with rainfall or temperature, but did vary significantly with several host ecological traits. Likewise, Neotropical-Nearctic migratory birds were significantly less likely to be infested than resident species. Using a molecular library developed from morphologically-identified adult ticks specifically for this study, we identified eleven tick species parasitizing birds, indicating that a substantial portion of the Panamanian avian species pool is parasitized by a diversity of tick species. Tick species that most commonly parasitized birds had the widest diversity of avian hosts, suggesting that immature tick species are opportunistic bird parasites. Although certain avian ecological traits are positively associated with parasitism, we found no evidence that individual tick species show specificity to particular avian host ecological traits. Finally, our data suggest that the four principal vectors of Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever in the Neotropics rarely, if ever, parasitize Panamanian birds. However, other tick species that harbor newly-discovered rickettsial parasites of unknown pathogenicity are frequently found on these birds. Given our discovery of broad interaction between Panamanian tick and avian biodiversity, future work on tick ecology and the dynamics of

  10. Complete Mitochondrial Genome Sequence Data Provides Genetic Evidence That the Brown Dog Tick Rhipicephalus sanguineus (Acari: Ixodidae) Represents a Species Complex

    PubMed Central

    Liu, Guo-Hua; Chen, Fen; Chen, Yi-Zhou; Song, Hui-Qun; Lin, Rui-Qing; Zhou, Dong-Hui; Zhu, Xing-Quan

    2013-01-01

    Ticks are blood-sucking ectoparasites of great medical and veterinary significance that can transmit bacteria, protozoa, fungi and viruses, and cause a variety of human and animal diseases worldwide. In the present study, we sequenced the complete mitochondrial (mt) genome of Rhipicephalus sanguineus from China (RSC) and compared with that of R. sanguineus from USA (RSU). Nucleotide sequence difference in the full mt genome was 11.23% between RSC and RSU. For the 13 protein-coding genes, comparison revealed sequence divergences at both the nucleotide (9.34-15.65%) and amino acid (2.54-19.23%) levels between RSC and RSU. In addition, sequence comparison of the conserved mt cox1 and cytb genes among multiple individual R. sanguineus revealed substantial nucleotide differences between RSC and RSU but limited sequence variation within RSC. Phylogenetic analysis of ticks based on the amino acid sequence data of 13 protein-coding genes revealed that R. sanguineus from China and R. sanguineus from USA represent sister taxa (likely separate species). Taken together, the findings support the recently proposal that R. sanguineus tick may represents a species complex of at least two closely related species. PMID:23630448

  11. Dispersal and distribution of the tick Ixodes uriae within and among seabird host populations: the need for a population genetic approach.

    PubMed

    McCoy, K D; Boulinier, T; Chardine, J W; Danchin, E; Michalakis, Y

    1999-04-01

    The aim of this study was to characterize the spatial distribution of the tick Ixodes uriae within and among populations of its seabird hosts and to consider the potential insight that could be gained by a population genetic approach to the issue of dispersal of this tick. Analyses of data collected around the Avalon Peninsula, Newfoundland, indicated that both the prevalence and mean abundance of ticks varied significantly among sample locations. Whereas ticks were found on all 4 host species examined (Rissa tridactyla, Uria aalge, Alca torda, Fratercula arctica), infestation prevalence and mean abundance differed among the species. On R. tridactyla, ticks were significantly aggregated at the among-nest scale and nestling infestation was spatially autocorrelated. Conversely, ticks were not aggregated among chicks within nests. These results enabled us to make a priori predictions regarding tick dispersal and host specificity and suggest there may be spatial structure of Ixodes uriae populations at both macro- and microgeographic scales. Investigating the population genetic structure of ticks within and among populations of hosts with different breeding biologies should provide direct insight into the metapopulation dynamics of such a spatially structured system. PMID:10219295

  12. Spatial covariation of local abundance among different parasite species: the effect of shared hosts.

    PubMed

    Lagrue, C; Poulin, R

    2015-10-01

    Within any parasite species, abundance varies spatially, reaching higher values in certain localities than in others, presumably reflecting the local availability of host resources or the local suitability of habitat characteristics for free-living stages. In the absence of strong interactions between two species of helminths with complex life cycles, we might predict that the degree to which their abundances covary spatially is determined by their common resource requirements, i.e. how many host species they share throughout their life cycles. We test this prediction using five trematode species, all with a typical three-host cycle, from multiple lake sampling sites in New Zealand's South Island: Stegodexamene anguillae, Telogaster opisthorchis, Coitocaecum parvum, Maritrema poulini, and an Apatemon sp. Pairs of species from this set of five share the same host species at either one, two, or all three life cycle stages. Our results show that when two trematode species share the same host species at all three life stages, they show positive spatial covariation in abundance (of metacercarial and adult stages) across localities. When they share hosts at two life stages, they show positive spatial covariation in abundance in some cases but not others. Finally, if two trematode species share only one host species, at a single life stage, their abundances do not covary spatially. These findings indicate that the extent of resource sharing between parasite species can drive the spatial match-mismatch between their abundances, and thus influence their coevolutionary dynamics and the degree to which host populations suffer from additive or synergistic effects of multiple infections. PMID:26113509

  13. Assessing the sensitivity of avian species abundance to land cover and climate

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    LeBrun, Jaymi J.; Thogmartin, Wayne E.; Thompson, Frank R.; Dijak, William D.; Millspaugh, Joshua J.

    2016-01-01

    Climate projections for the Midwestern United States predict southerly climates to shift northward. These shifts in climate could alter distributions of species across North America through changes in climate (i.e., temperature and precipitation), or through climate-induced changes on land cover. Our objective was to determine the relative impacts of land cover and climate on the abundance of five bird species in the Central United States that have habitat requirements ranging from grassland and shrubland to forest. We substituted space for time to examine potential impacts of a changing climate by assessing climate and land cover relationships over a broad latitudinal gradient. We found positive and negative relationships of climate and land cover factors with avian abundances. Habitat variables drove patterns of abundance in migratory and resident species, although climate was also influential in predicting abundance for some species occupying more open habitat (i.e., prairie warbler, blue-winged warbler, and northern bobwhite). Abundance of northern bobwhite increased with winter temperature and was the species exhibiting the most significant effect of climate. Models for birds primarily occupying early successional habitats performed better with a combination of habitat and climate variables whereas models of species found in contiguous forest performed best with land cover alone. These varied species-specific responses present unique challenges to land managers trying to balance species conservation over a variety of land covers. Management activities focused on increasing forest cover may play a role in mitigating effects of future climate by providing habitat refugia to species vulnerable to projected changes. Conservation efforts would be best served focusing on areas with high species abundances and an array of habitats. Future work managing forests for resilience and resistance to climate change could benefit species already susceptible to climate impacts.

  14. Remembrance of things past: modelling the relationship between species' abundances in living communities and death assemblages

    PubMed Central

    Olszewski, Thomas D.

    2012-01-01

    Accumulations of dead skeletal material are a valuable archive of past ecological conditions. However, such assemblages are not equivalent to living communities because they mix the remains of multiple generations and are altered by post-mortem processes. The abundance of a species in a death assemblage can be quantitatively modelled by successively integrating the product of an influx time series and a post-mortem loss function (a decay function with a constant half-life). In such a model, temporal mixing increases expected absolute dead abundance relative to average influx as a linear function of half-life and increases variation in absolute dead abundance values as a square-root function of half-life. Because typical abundance distributions of ecological communities are logarithmically distributed, species' differences in preservational half-life would have to be very large to substantially alter species' abundance ranks (i.e. make rare species common or vice-versa). In addition, expected dead abundances increase at a faster rate than their range of variation with increased time averaging, predicting greater consistency in the relative abundance structure of death assemblages than their parent living community. PMID:21653564

  15. Gradients in the Number of Species at Reef-Seagrass Ecotones Explained by Gradients in Abundance

    PubMed Central

    Tuya, Fernando; Vanderklift, Mathew A.; Wernberg, Thomas; Thomsen, Mads S.

    2011-01-01

    Gradients in the composition and diversity (e.g. number of species) of faunal assemblages are common at ecotones between juxtaposed habitats. Patterns in the number of species, however, can be confounded by patterns in abundance of individuals, because more species tend to be found wherever there are more individuals. We tested whether proximity to reefs influenced patterns in the composition and diversity (‘species density’ = number of species per area and ‘species richness’ = number of species per number of individuals) of prosobranch gastropods in meadows of two seagrasses with different physiognomy: Posidonia and Amphibolis. A change in the species composition was observed from reef-seagrass edges towards the interiors of Amphibolis, but not in Posidonia meadows. Similarly, the abundance of gastropods and species density was higher at edges relative to interiors of Amphibolis meadows, but not in Posidonia meadows. However, species richness was not affected by proximity to reefs in either type of seagrass meadow. The higher number of species at the reef-Amphibolis edge was therefore a consequence of higher abundance, rather than species richness per se. These results suggest that patterns in the composition and diversity of fauna with proximity to adjacent habitats, and the underlying processes that they reflect, likely depend on the physiognomy of the habitat. PMID:21629654

  16. Long-Term Changes in Species Composition and Relative Abundances of Sharks at a Provisioning Site

    PubMed Central

    Brunnschweiler, Juerg M.; Abrantes, Kátya G.; Barnett, Adam

    2014-01-01

    Diving with sharks, often in combination with food baiting/provisioning, has become an important product of today’s recreational dive industry. Whereas the effects baiting/provisioning has on the behaviour and abundance of individual shark species are starting to become known, there is an almost complete lack of equivalent data from multi-species shark diving sites. In this study, changes in species composition and relative abundances were determined at the Shark Reef Marine Reserve, a multi-species shark feeding site in Fiji. Using direct observation sampling methods, eight species of sharks (bull shark Carcharhinus leucas, grey reef shark Carcharhinus amblyrhynchos, whitetip reef shark Triaenodon obesus, blacktip reef shark Carcharhinus melanopterus, tawny nurse shark Nebrius ferrugineus, silvertip shark Carcharhinus albimarginatus, sicklefin lemon shark Negaprion acutidens, and tiger shark Galeocerdo cuvier) displayed inter-annual site fidelity between 2003 and 2012. Encounter rates and/or relative abundances of some species changed over time, overall resulting in more individuals (mostly C. leucas) of fewer species being encountered on average on shark feeding dives at the end of the study period. Differences in shark community composition between the years 2004–2006 and 2007–2012 were evident, mostly because N. ferrugineus, C. albimarginatus and N. acutidens were much more abundant in 2004–2006 and very rare in the period of 2007–2012. Two explanations are offered for the observed changes in relative abundances over time, namely inter-specific interactions and operator-specific feeding protocols. Both, possibly in combination, are suggested to be important determinants of species composition and encounter rates, and relative abundances at this shark provisioning site in Fiji. This study, which includes the most species from a spatially confined shark provisioning site to date, suggests that long-term provisioning may result in competitive exclusion

  17. Long-term changes in species composition and relative abundances of sharks at a provisioning site.

    PubMed

    Brunnschweiler, Juerg M; Abrantes, Kátya G; Barnett, Adam

    2014-01-01

    Diving with sharks, often in combination with food baiting/provisioning, has become an important product of today's recreational dive industry. Whereas the effects baiting/provisioning has on the behaviour and abundance of individual shark species are starting to become known, there is an almost complete lack of equivalent data from multi-species shark diving sites. In this study, changes in species composition and relative abundances were determined at the Shark Reef Marine Reserve, a multi-species shark feeding site in Fiji. Using direct observation sampling methods, eight species of sharks (bull shark Carcharhinus leucas, grey reef shark Carcharhinus amblyrhynchos, whitetip reef shark Triaenodon obesus, blacktip reef shark Carcharhinus melanopterus, tawny nurse shark Nebrius ferrugineus, silvertip shark Carcharhinus albimarginatus, sicklefin lemon shark Negaprion acutidens, and tiger shark Galeocerdo cuvier) displayed inter-annual site fidelity between 2003 and 2012. Encounter rates and/or relative abundances of some species changed over time, overall resulting in more individuals (mostly C. leucas) of fewer species being encountered on average on shark feeding dives at the end of the study period. Differences in shark community composition between the years 2004-2006 and 2007-2012 were evident, mostly because N. ferrugineus, C. albimarginatus and N. acutidens were much more abundant in 2004-2006 and very rare in the period of 2007-2012. Two explanations are offered for the observed changes in relative abundances over time, namely inter-specific interactions and operator-specific feeding protocols. Both, possibly in combination, are suggested to be important determinants of species composition and encounter rates, and relative abundances at this shark provisioning site in Fiji. This study, which includes the most species from a spatially confined shark provisioning site to date, suggests that long-term provisioning may result in competitive exclusion among shark

  18. Long-term changes in species composition and relative abundances of sharks at a provisioning site.

    PubMed

    Brunnschweiler, Juerg M; Abrantes, Kátya G; Barnett, Adam

    2014-01-01

    Diving with sharks, often in combination with food baiting/provisioning, has become an important product of today's recreational dive industry. Whereas the effects baiting/provisioning has on the behaviour and abundance of individual shark species are starting to become known, there is an almost complete lack of equivalent data from multi-species shark diving sites. In this study, changes in species composition and relative abundances were determined at the Shark Reef Marine Reserve, a multi-species shark feeding site in Fiji. Using direct observation sampling methods, eight species of sharks (bull shark Carcharhinus leucas, grey reef shark Carcharhinus amblyrhynchos, whitetip reef shark Triaenodon obesus, blacktip reef shark Carcharhinus melanopterus, tawny nurse shark Nebrius ferrugineus, silvertip shark Carcharhinus albimarginatus, sicklefin lemon shark Negaprion acutidens, and tiger shark Galeocerdo cuvier) displayed inter-annual site fidelity between 2003 and 2012. Encounter rates and/or relative abundances of some species changed over time, overall resulting in more individuals (mostly C. leucas) of fewer species being encountered on average on shark feeding dives at the end of the study period. Differences in shark community composition between the years 2004-2006 and 2007-2012 were evident, mostly because N. ferrugineus, C. albimarginatus and N. acutidens were much more abundant in 2004-2006 and very rare in the period of 2007-2012. Two explanations are offered for the observed changes in relative abundances over time, namely inter-specific interactions and operator-specific feeding protocols. Both, possibly in combination, are suggested to be important determinants of species composition and encounter rates, and relative abundances at this shark provisioning site in Fiji. This study, which includes the most species from a spatially confined shark provisioning site to date, suggests that long-term provisioning may result in competitive exclusion among shark

  19. Estimating species occurrence, abundance, and detection probability using zero-inflated distributions

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Wenger, S.J.; Freeman, Mary C.

    2008-01-01

    Researchers have developed methods to account for imperfect detection of species with either occupancy (presence-absence) or count data using replicated sampling. We show how these approaches can be combined to simultaneously estimate occurrence, abundance, and detection probability by specifying a zero-inflated distribution for abundance. This approach may be particularly appropriate when patterns of occurrence and abundance arise from distinct processes operating at differing spatial or temporal scales. We apply the model to two data sets: (1) previously published data for a species of duck, Anas platyrhynchos, and (2) data for a stream fish species, Etheostoma scotti. We show that in these cases, an incomplete-detection zero-inflated modeling approach yields a superior fit to the data than other models. We propose that zero-inflated abundance models accounting for incomplete detection be considered when replicate count data are available.

  20. Ticks on Deer and Cattle in the Cattle Fever Tick Permanent Quarantine Zone, 2012

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Ticks were sampled from hosts in the cattle fever tick permanent quarantine zone along the Texas-Mexico border on five occasions in 2012. Three sample events involved white-tailed deer populations in Zapata and Starr Counties and two were from a cattle herd in Kinney County. Six species of ticks (n ...

  1. Description of the immature stages and redescription of the female of Ixodes schulzei Aragão & Fonseca, 1951 (Acari: Ixodidae), an endemic tick species of Brazil.

    PubMed

    Barros-Battesti, Darci M; Onofrio, Valeria C; Faccini, João L H; Labruna, Marcelo B; Arruda-Santos, Ana D; Giacomin, Flávia G

    2007-11-01

    Ixodes schulzei Aragão & Fonseca, 1951 is a tick endemic to Brazil, where nine species of Ixodes Latreille, 1796 are currently known to occur. Larvae, nymphs and females of I. schulzei were obtained from a laboratory colony originating from an engorged female collected on a free-living water rat Nectomys squamipes from the Santa Branca municipality, São Paulo State. Only female ticks were obtained from engorged nymphs. Unfed immature and female adult specimens were measured and the descriptions were based on optical and scanning electron microscopy, as were drawings of some features of the larva. Both immature stages present the very long palpi and basis capituli, and the female has large, contiguous porose areas. However, the basis capituli is triangular, with a slight central elevation in the larva and nymph, whereas in the female this area is depressed. The I. schulzei types deposited at the FIOCRUZ (Instituto Oswaldo Cruz) were also examined, as was other material from collections, such as the IBSP (Coleção Acarológica do Instituto Butantan), CNC-FMVZ/USP (Coleção Nacional de Carrapatos da Faculdade de Medicina Veterinária e Zootecnia da USP) and USNTC (United States National Tick Collection). In addition, the relationship between I. schulzei and other immature neotropical species of Ixodes is discussed.

  2. Regional-scale directional changes in abundance of tree species along a temperature gradient in Japan.

    PubMed

    Suzuki, Satoshi N; Ishihara, Masae I; Hidaka, Amane

    2015-09-01

    Climate changes are assumed to shift the ranges of tree species and forest biomes. Such range shifts result from changes in abundances of tree species or functional types. Owing to global warming, the abundance of a tree species or functional type is expected to increase near the colder edge of its range and decrease near the warmer edge. This study examined directional changes in abundance and demographic parameters of forest trees along a temperature gradient, as well as a successional gradient, in Japan. Changes in the relative abundance of each of four functional types (evergreen broad-leaved, deciduous broad-leaved, evergreen temperate conifer, and evergreen boreal conifer) and the demography of each species (recruitment rate, mortality, and population growth rate) were analyzed in 39 permanent forest plots across the Japanese archipelago. Directional changes in the relative abundance of functional types were detected along the temperature gradient. Relative abundance of evergreen broad-leaved trees increased near their colder range boundaries, especially in secondary forests, coinciding with the decrease in deciduous broad-leaved trees. Similarly, relative abundance of deciduous broad-leaved trees increased near their colder range boundaries, coinciding with the decrease in boreal conifers. These functional-type-level changes were mainly due to higher recruitment rates and partly to the lower mortality of individual species at colder sites. This is the first report to show that tree species abundances in temperate forests are changing directionally along a temperature gradient, which might be due to current or past climate changes as well as recovery from past disturbances.

  3. Regional-scale directional changes in abundance of tree species along a temperature gradient in Japan.

    PubMed

    Suzuki, Satoshi N; Ishihara, Masae I; Hidaka, Amane

    2015-09-01

    Climate changes are assumed to shift the ranges of tree species and forest biomes. Such range shifts result from changes in abundances of tree species or functional types. Owing to global warming, the abundance of a tree species or functional type is expected to increase near the colder edge of its range and decrease near the warmer edge. This study examined directional changes in abundance and demographic parameters of forest trees along a temperature gradient, as well as a successional gradient, in Japan. Changes in the relative abundance of each of four functional types (evergreen broad-leaved, deciduous broad-leaved, evergreen temperate conifer, and evergreen boreal conifer) and the demography of each species (recruitment rate, mortality, and population growth rate) were analyzed in 39 permanent forest plots across the Japanese archipelago. Directional changes in the relative abundance of functional types were detected along the temperature gradient. Relative abundance of evergreen broad-leaved trees increased near their colder range boundaries, especially in secondary forests, coinciding with the decrease in deciduous broad-leaved trees. Similarly, relative abundance of deciduous broad-leaved trees increased near their colder range boundaries, coinciding with the decrease in boreal conifers. These functional-type-level changes were mainly due to higher recruitment rates and partly to the lower mortality of individual species at colder sites. This is the first report to show that tree species abundances in temperate forests are changing directionally along a temperature gradient, which might be due to current or past climate changes as well as recovery from past disturbances. PMID:25712048

  4. Species Distribution Models and Ecological Suitability Analysis for Potential Tick Vectors of Lyme Disease in Mexico

    PubMed Central

    Illoldi-Rangel, Patricia; Rivaldi, Chissa-Louise; Sissel, Blake; Trout Fryxell, Rebecca; Gordillo-Pérez, Guadalupe; Rodríguez-Moreno, Angel; Williamson, Phillip; Montiel-Parra, Griselda; Sánchez-Cordero, Víctor; Sarkar, Sahotra

    2012-01-01

    Species distribution models were constructed for ten Ixodes species and Amblyomma cajennense for a region including Mexico and Texas. The model was based on a maximum entropy algorithm that used environmental layers to predict the relative probability of presence for each taxon. For Mexico, species geographic ranges were predicted by restricting the models to cells which have a higher probability than the lowest probability of the cells in which a presence record was located. There was spatial nonconcordance between the distributions of Amblyomma cajennense and the Ixodes group with the former restricted to lowlands and mainly the eastern coast of Mexico and the latter to montane regions with lower temperature. The risk of Lyme disease is, therefore, mainly present in the highlands where some Ixodes species are known vectors; if Amblyomma cajennense turns out to be a competent vector, the area of risk also extends to the lowlands and the east coast. PMID:22518171

  5. Regional species richness of families and the distribution of abundance and rarity in a local community of forest Hymenoptera

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ulrich, Werner

    2005-09-01

    Recent investigations about the relationship between the number of species of taxonomic lineages and regional patterns of species abundances gave indecisive results. Here, it is shown that mean densities of species of a species-rich community of forest Hymenoptera (673 species out of 25 families) were positively related to the number of European species per family. The fraction of abundant species per family declined and the fraction of rare species increased with species richness. Species rich families contained relatively more species, which were present in only one study year (occasional species), and relatively fewer species present during the whole study period (frequent species).

  6. Ixodid tick infestation in cattle and wild animals in Maswa and Iringa, Tanzania.

    PubMed

    Kwak, You Shine; Kim, Tae Yun; Nam, Sung-Hyun; Lee, In-Yong; Kim, Hyung-Pyo; Mduma, Simon; Keyyu, Julius; Fyumagwa, Robert; Yong, Tai-Soon

    2014-10-01

    Ticks and tick-borne diseases are important in human and livestock health worldwide. In November 2012, ixodid ticks were collected and identified morphologically from cattle and wild animals in the Maswa district and Iringa urban, Tanzania. Amblyomma gemma, A. lepidum, and A. variegatum were identified from Maswa cattle, and A. variegatum was the predominant species. A. marmoreum, Hyalomma impeltatum, and Rhipicephalus pulchellus were identified from Iringa cattle in addition to the above 3 Amblyomma species, and A. gemma was the most abundant species. Total 4 Amblyomma and 6 Rhipicephalus species were identified from wild animals of the 2 areas. A. lepidum was predominant in Maswa buffaloes, whereas A. gemma was predominant in Iringa buffaloes. Overall, A. variegatum in cattle was predominant in the Maswa district and A. gemma was predominant in Iringa, Tanzania.

  7. Temporal comparison and predictors of fish species abundance and richness on undisturbed coral reef patches.

    PubMed

    Wagner, Elena L E S; Roche, Dominique G; Binning, Sandra A; Wismer, Sharon; Bshary, Redouan

    2015-01-01

    Large disturbances can cause rapid degradation of coral reef communities, but what baseline changes in species assemblages occur on undisturbed reefs through time? We surveyed live coral cover, reef fish abundance and fish species richness in 1997 and again in 2007 on 47 fringing patch reefs of varying size and depth at Mersa Bareika, Ras Mohammed National Park, Egypt. No major human or natural disturbance event occurred between these two survey periods in this remote protected area. In the absence of large disturbances, we found that live coral cover, reef fish abundance and fish species richness did not differ in 1997 compared to 2007. Fish abundance and species richness on patches was largely related to the presence of shelters (caves and/or holes), live coral cover and patch size (volume). The presence of the ectoparasite-eating cleaner wrasse, Labroides dimidiatus, was also positively related to fish species richness. Our results underscore the importance of physical reef characteristics, such as patch size and shelter availability, in addition to biotic characteristics, such as live coral cover and cleaner wrasse abundance, in supporting reef fish species richness and abundance through time in a relatively undisturbed and understudied region.

  8. Temporal comparison and predictors of fish species abundance and richness on undisturbed coral reef patches

    PubMed Central

    Wismer, Sharon; Bshary, Redouan

    2015-01-01

    Large disturbances can cause rapid degradation of coral reef communities, but what baseline changes in species assemblages occur on undisturbed reefs through time? We surveyed live coral cover, reef fish abundance and fish species richness in 1997 and again in 2007 on 47 fringing patch reefs of varying size and depth at Mersa Bareika, Ras Mohammed National Park, Egypt. No major human or natural disturbance event occurred between these two survey periods in this remote protected area. In the absence of large disturbances, we found that live coral cover, reef fish abundance and fish species richness did not differ in 1997 compared to 2007. Fish abundance and species richness on patches was largely related to the presence of shelters (caves and/or holes), live coral cover and patch size (volume). The presence of the ectoparasite-eating cleaner wrasse, Labroides dimidiatus, was also positively related to fish species richness. Our results underscore the importance of physical reef characteristics, such as patch size and shelter availability, in addition to biotic characteristics, such as live coral cover and cleaner wrasse abundance, in supporting reef fish species richness and abundance through time in a relatively undisturbed and understudied region. PMID:26644988

  9. Temporal comparison and predictors of fish species abundance and richness on undisturbed coral reef patches.

    PubMed

    Wagner, Elena L E S; Roche, Dominique G; Binning, Sandra A; Wismer, Sharon; Bshary, Redouan

    2015-01-01

    Large disturbances can cause rapid degradation of coral reef communities, but what baseline changes in species assemblages occur on undisturbed reefs through time? We surveyed live coral cover, reef fish abundance and fish species richness in 1997 and again in 2007 on 47 fringing patch reefs of varying size and depth at Mersa Bareika, Ras Mohammed National Park, Egypt. No major human or natural disturbance event occurred between these two survey periods in this remote protected area. In the absence of large disturbances, we found that live coral cover, reef fish abundance and fish species richness did not differ in 1997 compared to 2007. Fish abundance and species richness on patches was largely related to the presence of shelters (caves and/or holes), live coral cover and patch size (volume). The presence of the ectoparasite-eating cleaner wrasse, Labroides dimidiatus, was also positively related to fish species richness. Our results underscore the importance of physical reef characteristics, such as patch size and shelter availability, in addition to biotic characteristics, such as live coral cover and cleaner wrasse abundance, in supporting reef fish species richness and abundance through time in a relatively undisturbed and understudied region. PMID:26644988

  10. Lyme disease risk not amplified in a species-poor vertebrate community: similar Borrelia burgdorferi tick infection prevalence and OspC genotype frequencies.

    PubMed

    States, S L; Brinkerhoff, R J; Carpi, G; Steeves, T K; Folsom-O'Keefe, C; DeVeaux, M; Diuk-Wasser, M A

    2014-10-01

    The effect of biodiversity declines on human health is currently debated, but empirical assessments are lacking. Lyme disease provides a model system to assess relationships between biodiversity and human disease because the etiologic agent, Borrelia burgdorferi, is transmitted in the United States by the generalist black-legged tick (Ixodes scapularis) among a wide range of mammalian and avian hosts. The 'dilution effect' hypothesis predicts that species-poor host communities dominated by white-footed mice (Peromyscus leucopus) will pose the greatest human risk because P. leucopus infects the largest numbers of ticks, resulting in higher human exposure to infected I. scapularis ticks. P. leucopus-dominated communities are also expected to maintain a higher frequency of those B. burgdorferi outer surface protein C (ospC) genotypes that this host species more efficiently transmits ('multiple niche polymorphism' hypothesis). Because some of these genotypes are human invasive, an additive increase in human disease risk is expected in species-poor settings. We assessed these theoretical predictions by comparing I. scapularis nymphal infection prevalence, density of infected nymphs and B. burgdorferi genotype diversity at sites on Block Island, RI, where P. leucopus dominates the mammalian host community, to species-diverse sites in northeastern Connecticut. We found no support for the dilution effect hypothesis; B. burgdorferi nymphal infection prevalence was similar between island and mainland and the density of B. burgdorferi infected nymphs was higher on the mainland, contrary to what is predicted by the dilution effect hypothesis. Evidence for the multiple niche polymorphism hypothesis was mixed: there was lower ospC genotype diversity at island than mainland sites, but no overrepresentation of genotypes with higher fitness in P. leucopus or that are more invasive in humans. We conclude that other mechanisms explain similar nymphal infection prevalence in both

  11. Lyme disease risk not amplified in a species-poor vertebrate community: similar Borrelia burgdorferi tick infection prevalence and OspC genotype frequencies

    PubMed Central

    States, S.L.; Brinkerhoff, R. J.; Carpi, G.; Steeves, T.K.; Folsom-O'Keefe, C.; DeVeaux, M.; Diuk-Wasser, M.A.

    2015-01-01

    The effect of biodiversity declines on human health are currently debated, but empirical assessments are lacking. Lyme disease provides a model system to assess relationships between biodiversity and human disease because the etiologic agent, Borrelia burgdorferi, is transmitted in the United States by the generalist black-legged tick (Ixodes scapularis) among a wide range of mammalian and avian hosts. The ‘dilution effect’ hypothesis predicts that species-poor host communities dominated by white-footed mice (Peromyscus leucopus) will pose the greatest human risk because P. leucopus infects the largest numbers of ticks, resulting in higher human exposure to infected I. scapularis ticks. P. leucopus-dominated communities are also expected to maintain a higher frequency of those B. burgdorferi outer surface protein C (ospC) genotypes that this host species more efficiently transmits (‘multiple niche polymorphism’ hypothesis). Because some of these genotypes are human invasive, an additive increase in human disease risk is expected in species-poor settings. We assessed these theoretical predictions by comparing I. scapularis nymphal infection prevalence, density of infected nymphs and B. burgdorferi genotype diversity at sites on Block Island, RI, where P. leucopus dominates the mammalian host community, to species-diverse sites in northeastern Connecticut. We found no support for the dilution effect hypothesis; B. burgdorferi nymphal infection prevalence was similar between island and mainland and the density of B. burgdorferi infected nymphs was higher on the mainland, contrary to what is predicted by the dilution effect hypothesis. Evidence for the multiple niche polymorphism hypothesis was mixed: there was lower ospC genotype diversity at island than mainland sites, but no overrepresentation of genotypes with higher fitness in P. leucopus or that are more invasive in humans. We conclude that other mechanisms explain similar nymphal infection prevalence in

  12. Lyme disease risk not amplified in a species-poor vertebrate community: similar Borrelia burgdorferi tick infection prevalence and OspC genotype frequencies.

    PubMed

    States, S L; Brinkerhoff, R J; Carpi, G; Steeves, T K; Folsom-O'Keefe, C; DeVeaux, M; Diuk-Wasser, M A

    2014-10-01

    The effect of biodiversity declines on human health is currently debated, but empirical assessments are lacking. Lyme disease provides a model system to assess relationships between biodiversity and human disease because the etiologic agent, Borrelia burgdorferi, is transmitted in the United States by the generalist black-legged tick (Ixodes scapularis) among a wide range of mammalian and avian hosts. The 'dilution effect' hypothesis predicts that species-poor host communities dominated by white-footed mice (Peromyscus leucopus) will pose the greatest human risk because P. leucopus infects the largest numbers of ticks, resulting in higher human exposure to infected I. scapularis ticks. P. leucopus-dominated communities are also expected to maintain a higher frequency of those B. burgdorferi outer surface protein C (ospC) genotypes that this host species more efficiently transmits ('multiple niche polymorphism' hypothesis). Because some of these genotypes are human invasive, an additive increase in human disease risk is expected in species-poor settings. We assessed these theoretical predictions by comparing I. scapularis nymphal infection prevalence, density of infected nymphs and B. burgdorferi genotype diversity at sites on Block Island, RI, where P. leucopus dominates the mammalian host community, to species-diverse sites in northeastern Connecticut. We found no support for the dilution effect hypothesis; B. burgdorferi nymphal infection prevalence was similar between island and mainland and the density of B. burgdorferi infected nymphs was higher on the mainland, contrary to what is predicted by the dilution effect hypothesis. Evidence for the multiple niche polymorphism hypothesis was mixed: there was lower ospC genotype diversity at island than mainland sites, but no overrepresentation of genotypes with higher fitness in P. leucopus or that are more invasive in humans. We conclude that other mechanisms explain similar nymphal infection prevalence in both

  13. Vaccinomics, the new road to tick vaccines.

    PubMed

    de la Fuente, José; Merino, Octavio

    2013-12-01

    Ticks are a threat to human and animal health worldwide. Ticks are considered to be second worldwide to mosquitoes as vectors of human diseases, the most important vectors of diseases that affect cattle industry worldwide and important vectors of diseases affecting pets. Tick vaccines are a cost-effective and environmentally friendly alternative to protect against tick-borne diseases through the control of vector infestations and reducing pathogen infection and transmission. These premises stress the need for developing improved tick vaccines in a more efficient way. In this context, development of improved vaccines for tick-borne diseases will be greatly enhanced by vaccinomics approaches starting from the study of tick–host–pathogen molecular interactions and ending in the characterization and validation of vaccine formulations. The discovery of new candidate vaccine antigens for the control of tick infestations and pathogen infection and transmission requires the development of effective screening platforms and algorithms that allow the analysis and validation of data produced by systems biology approaches to tick research. Tick vaccines that affect both tick infestations and pathogen transmission could be used to vaccinate human and animal populations at risk and reservoir species to reduce host exposure to ticks while reducing the number of infected ticks and their vectorial capacity for pathogens that affect human and animal health worldwide. PMID:24396872

  14. Cattle ticks in Cameroon: is Rhipicephalus (Boophilus) microplus absent in Cameroon and the Central African region?

    PubMed

    Awa, D N; Adakal, H; Luogbou, N D D; Wachong, K H; Leinyuy, I; Achukwi, M D

    2015-03-01

    In most parts of the world, ticks are rapidly developing resistance to commonly used acaricides thus rendering control difficult. This constraint is further compounded by the introduction of new species in areas where they did not exist before. Such is the case with the introduction into and rapid spread of Rhipicephalus (Boophilus) microplus in some countries of West Africa. With the looming threat of its further spread in the region, the objective of the present study was to update knowledge on cattle ticks in Cameroon. Among 19,189 ticks collected monthly from 60 animals in 5 herds from March 2012 to February 2013, Rh. (B.) decoloratus was the most abundant species with a relative prevalence of 62.2%, followed by Amblyomma variegatum (28.4%), Rh. (B.) annulatus (0.2%), Rh. (B.) geigyi (0.03%), other Rhipicephalus spp. (8.4%) and Hyalomma spp. (0.3%). Rh. (B.) decoloratus and A. variegatum were also the most widely distributed in space. Infestation rate was generally high, with average tick count/animal of about 80 during peak periods. Tick distribution and abundance in the different sites was as varied as the underlying factors, among which the most important were management systems and climatic factors. The effects of rainfall and temperature were confounded by other factors and difficult to evaluate. However, it appears tick development depends among other factors, on a humidity threshold, above which there is not much more effect. Rh. microplus was not found during this study, but more extensive tick collections have to be done to confirm this. In conclusion, cattle tick infestation in Cameroon remains an important cause for concern. Farmers need assistance in the use and management of acaricides in order to increase their efficiency and reduce the development of resistance. Although Rh. microplus was not found, its introduction from other West African countries is imminent if adequate measures, especially in the control and limitation of animal movements

  15. Abundance and species composition of Tintinnina (ciliophora) in Bahía Blanca estuary, Argentina

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Barría de Cao, M. S.

    1992-03-01

    Numerical abundance and seasonal cycle of tintinnines species were studied in the inner part of the Bahía Blanca estuary. Sampling was carried out at two fixed stations at approximately weekly intervals over the period March 1986-February 1987. Nineteen species representing five genera were recorded. Most species belonged to the genus Tintinnopsis. Maximal abundances of tintinnines, 10·1 × 10 3 1 -1 and 11·3 × 10 3 1 -1 at each station respectively, were found in summer. Minimal abundances, 0·5 × 10 3 1 -1 and 0·7 × 10 3 1 -1 at each station respectively, were found in winter. Tintinnidium balechi, Tintinnopsis parva and Tintinnopsis glans were present throughout the year. Tintinnopsis gracilis, Tintinnopsis baltica and Tintinnopsis beroidea exhibited seasonal occurrence, the remaining species did not show a clear pattern of distribution. The presence of Favella taraikaensis demonstrated occasional intrusions of typical fauna of the outer estuary.

  16. Species composition, abundance, and seasonal dynamics of stink bugs (Hemiptera: Pentatomidae) in Minnesota soybean fields.

    PubMed

    Koch, Robert L; Pahs, Tiffany

    2014-08-01

    Stink bugs (Hemiptera: Pentatomidae) have historically not been pests of soybean in Minnesota. In response to the invasion of Halyomorpha halys (Stål) and reports of increasing abundance of species native to North America, a state-wide survey of soybean was conducted over 3 yr in Minnesota to determine species composition, abundance, and seasonal dynamics of Pentatomidae associated with soybean. Fourteen species of Pentatomidae (12 herbivorous and two predatory) were collected from soybean. H. halys was not detected in this survey. Among the herbivorous species found, adults of Euschistus variolarius (Palisot de Beauvois) had the greatest relative abundance (60.51%) and frequency of detection (18.44%), followed by Euschistus servus euschistoides (Say) (19.37 and 3.04%, respectively) and Chinavia hilaris (Say) (5.50 and 1.69%, respectively). Abundance of herbivorous nymphs and adults exceeded an economic threshold (20 nymphs and adults per 100 sweeps) in 0.82% of fields in 2012 but not in 2011 or 2013. The frequency of detection of herbivorous species and ratio of nymphs to adults increased with increasing reproductive growth stage of soybean. In two of three years, herbivorous adults were more abundant in the edge compared with interior of fields. Two predatory Pentatomidae, Podisus maculiventris (Say) and Podisus placidus Uhler, comprised 5.95 and 1.62% of the pentatomid adults. Though the species composition of Pentatomidae in Minnesota soybean differs from that in eastern and southern states, the spatial (i.e., greater abundance near field edge) and seasonal dynamics (i.e., increasing abundance and reproduction with increasing reproductive maturity of soybean) in soybean appear similar.

  17. Early MESSENGER Results for Less Abundant or Weakly Emitting Species in Mercury's Exosphere

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vervack, R. J., Jr.; Killen, R. M.; Sprague, A. L.; Burger, M. H.; Merkel, A. W.; Sarantos, M.

    2011-10-01

    Now that the MESSENGER spacecraft is in orbit about Mercury, the extended observing time enables searches for exospheric species that are less abundant or weakly emitting compared with those for which emission has previously been detected. Many of these species cannot be observed from the ground because of terrestrial atmospheric absorption. We report here on the status of MESSENGER orbitalphase searches for additional species in Mercury's exosphere.

  18. Early MESSENGER Results for Less Abundant or Weakly Emitting Species in Mercury's Exosphere

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Vervack, Ronald J., Jr.; McClintock, William E.; Killen, Rosemary M.; Sprague, Ann L.; Burger, Matthew H.; Merkel, Aimee W.; Sarantos, Menelaos

    2011-01-01

    Now that the Messenger spacecraft is in orbit about Mercury, the extended observing time enables searches for exospheric species that are less abundant or weakly emitting compared with those for which emission has previously been detected. Many of these species cannot be observed from the ground because of terrestrial atmospheric absorption. We report here on the status of MESSENGER orbital-phase searches for additional species in Mercury's exosphere.

  19. Tick bite

    MedlinePlus

    ... carry bacteria that can cause: Colorado tick fever Lyme disease Rocky Mountain spotted fever Tularemia These and other ... given to people who live in areas where Lyme disease is common. The person may receive: Blood and ...

  20. A brown dog tick (Rhipicephalus sanguineus) bite at sea.

    PubMed

    Stachow, E

    2015-01-01

    Medical Officers (MOs) and Medical Branch Ratings (MBRs) must maintain an awareness of the risk of vector-borne diseases among deployed personnel. Personnel working in the maritime environment may not expect to be at risk of tick bites, as ticks typically occupy habitats with dense vegetation such as forests or scrub land. However, tick-borne pathogens can cause serious and sometimes fatal disease, and therefore the risk of tick bites and associated diseases should be recognised. We present a case of a tick bite in a member of a ship's company eight days after leaving port. The tick was identified as a brown dog tick (Rhipicephalus sanguineus), a species known to thrive indoors. We describe several important tick-borne diseases which can be transmitted by R. sanguineus and explore best practice for tick removal and aftercare. Finally, we outline the appropriate management of suspected tick-borne disease in deployed personnel in the maritime environment. PMID:26867423

  1. A brown dog tick (Rhipicephalus sanguineus) bite at sea.

    PubMed

    Stachow, E

    2015-01-01

    Medical Officers (MOs) and Medical Branch Ratings (MBRs) must maintain an awareness of the risk of vector-borne diseases among deployed personnel. Personnel working in the maritime environment may not expect to be at risk of tick bites, as ticks typically occupy habitats with dense vegetation such as forests or scrub land. However, tick-borne pathogens can cause serious and sometimes fatal disease, and therefore the risk of tick bites and associated diseases should be recognised. We present a case of a tick bite in a member of a ship's company eight days after leaving port. The tick was identified as a brown dog tick (Rhipicephalus sanguineus), a species known to thrive indoors. We describe several important tick-borne diseases which can be transmitted by R. sanguineus and explore best practice for tick removal and aftercare. Finally, we outline the appropriate management of suspected tick-borne disease in deployed personnel in the maritime environment.

  2. Decadal variability in abundances of the dominant euphausiid species in southern sectors of the California Current

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Brinton, Edward; Townsend, Annie

    2003-08-01

    Euphausiid abundance data from broadly based California Cooperative Oceanic Fisheries Investigation surveys in California and Baja California sectors of the California Current provided a time series distinguishing periodic, rhythmic and irregular species patterns. Comparisons with environmental indexes indicate significant correlations with warm-water species, most notably in coastal Nyctiphanes simplex. Oceanic warm-water species were similarly, but less extremely, allied with an index. Coastal warm-water N. simplex was uncommon off southern California before the atmospheric regime shift of the 1970s. It assumed a post-1978 pattern of rhythmic biannual abundance increases and decreases during 1981-2000. The near-tropical oceanic Euphausia eximia and Pacific Central subtropicals patterned similarly, but was more periodic than rhythmic. Euphausia pacifica, the most dominant and broadly ranging Euphausia species, peaked at irregular but distinct bi-decadal abundances during 6 strong La Niña episodes. The peaks uniformly collapsed by 90%, becoming El Niño-associated minima. The cold-water coastal northern species Thysanoessa spinifera frequently ranged far south off Baja California before 1960 but became limited to Central California in the 1980s. The importance of T. spinifera off the Californias is small compared with northern regions, but it extends to southern upwelling centers contributing to dominance, here, by cold-water euphausiids. Decadal periodicity of species abundances decreased in the 1990s, when trends became more common. Differences among sectors were minimal between the two Californias, but were often distinct between southern California and Central Baja California. Species abundances, comparing pre- and post-climate shift species averages, differed insignificantly for all species when logarithmic values were used. With arithmetic values, most 1977-1998 average values were the greater, but with large standard deviations.

  3. Do abundance distributions and species aggregation correctly predict macroecological biodiversity patterns in tropical forests?

    PubMed Central

    Wiegand, Thorsten; Lehmann, Sebastian; Huth, Andreas; Fortin, Marie‐Josée

    2016-01-01

    Abstract Aim It has been recently suggested that different ‘unified theories of biodiversity and biogeography’ can be characterized by three common ‘minimal sufficient rules’: (1) species abundance distributions follow a hollow curve, (2) species show intraspecific aggregation, and (3) species are independently placed with respect to other species. Here, we translate these qualitative rules into a quantitative framework and assess if these minimal rules are indeed sufficient to predict multiple macroecological biodiversity patterns simultaneously. Location Tropical forest plots in Barro Colorado Island (BCI), Panama, and in Sinharaja, Sri Lanka. Methods We assess the predictive power of the three rules using dynamic and spatial simulation models in combination with census data from the two forest plots. We use two different versions of the model: (1) a neutral model and (2) an extended model that allowed for species differences in dispersal distances. In a first step we derive model parameterizations that correctly represent the three minimal rules (i.e. the model quantitatively matches the observed species abundance distribution and the distribution of intraspecific aggregation). In a second step we applied the parameterized models to predict four additional spatial biodiversity patterns. Results Species‐specific dispersal was needed to quantitatively fulfil the three minimal rules. The model with species‐specific dispersal correctly predicted the species–area relationship, but failed to predict the distance decay, the relationship between species abundances and aggregations, and the distribution of a spatial co‐occurrence index of all abundant species pairs. These results were consistent over the two forest plots. Main conclusions The three ‘minimal sufficient’ rules only provide an incomplete approximation of the stochastic spatial geometry of biodiversity in tropical forests. The assumption of independent interspecific placements is most

  4. Global patterns in sandy beach macrofauna: Species richness, abundance, biomass and body size

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Defeo, Omar; McLachlan, Anton

    2013-10-01

    Global patterns in species richness in sandy beach ecosystems have been poorly understood until comparatively recently, because of the difficulty of compiling high-resolution databases at continental scales. We analyze information from more than 200 sandy beaches around the world, which harbor hundreds of macrofauna species, and explore latitudinal trends in species richness, abundance and biomass. Species richness increases from temperate to tropical sites. Abundance follows contrasting trends depending on the slope of the beach: in gentle slope beaches, it is higher at temperate sites, whereas in steep-slope beaches it is higher at the tropics. Biomass follows identical negative trends for both climatic regions at the whole range of beach slopes, suggesting decreasing rates in carrying capacity of the environment towards reflective beaches. Various morphodynamic variables determine global trends in beach macrofauna. Species richness, abundance and biomass are higher at dissipative than at reflective beaches, whereas a body size follows the reverse pattern. A generalized linear model showed that large tidal range (which determines the vertical dimension of the intertidal habitat), small size of sand particles and flat beach slope (a product of the interaction among wave energy, tidal range and grain size) are correlated with high species richness, suggesting that these parameters represent the most parsimonious variables for modelling patterns in sandy beach macrofauna. Large-scale patterns indicate a scaling of abundance to a body size, suggesting that dissipative beaches harbor communities with highest abundance and species with the smallest body sizes. Additional information for tropical and northern hemisphere sandy beaches (underrepresented in our compilation) is required to decipher more conclusive trends, particularly in abundance, biomass and body size. Further research should integrate meaningful oceanographic variables, such as temperature and primary

  5. Use of community-composition data to predict the fecundity and abundance of species.

    PubMed

    Elmendorf, Sarah C; Moore, Kara A

    2008-12-01

    Species distribution models are critical tools for the prediction of invasive species spread and conservation of biodiversity. The majority of species distribution models have been built with environmental data. Community ecology theory suggests that species co-occurrence data could also be used to predict current and potential distributions of species. Species assemblages are the products of biotic and environmental constraints on the distribution of individual species and as a result may contain valuable information for niche modeling. We compared the predictive ability of distribution models of annual grassland plants derived from either environmental or community-composition data. Composition-based models were built with the presence or absence of species at a site as predictors of site quality, whereas environment-based models were built with soil chemistry, moisture content, above-ground biomass, and solar radiation as predictors. The reproductive output of experimentally seeded individuals of 4 species and the abundance of 100 species were used to evaluate the resulting models. Community-composition data were the best predictors of both the site-specific reproductive output of sown individuals and the site-specific abundance of existing populations. Successful community-based models were robust to omission of data on the occurrence of rare species, which suggests that even very basic survey data on the occurrence of common species may be adequate for generating such models. Our results highlight the need for increased public availability of ecological survey data to facilitate community-based modeling at scales relevant to conservation. PMID:18847440

  6. TickBot: a novel robotic device for controlling tick populations in the natural environment.

    PubMed

    Gaff, Holly D; White, Alexis; Leas, Kyle; Kelman, Pamela; Squire, James C; Livingston, David L; Sullivan, Gerald A; Baker, Elizabeth W; Sonenshine, Daniel E

    2015-03-01

    A semi-autonomous 4-wheeled robot (TickBot) was fitted with a denim cloth treated with an acaricide (permethrin™) and tested for its ability to control ticks in a tick-infested natural environment in Portsmouth, Virginia. The robot's sensors detect a magnetic field signal from a guide wire encased in 80m polyethylene tubing, enabling the robot to follow the trails, open areas and other terrain where the tubing was located. To attract ticks to the treated area, CO2 was distributed through the same tubing, fitted with evenly spaced pores and flow control valves, which permitted uniform CO2 distribution. Tests were done to determine the optimum frequency for TickBot to traverse the wire-guided treatment site as well as the duration of operation that could be accomplished on a single battery charge. Prior to treatment, dragging was done to determine the natural abundance of ticks in the test site. Controls were done without CO2 and without permethrin. TickBot proved highly effective in reducing the overall tick densities to nearly zero with the treatment that included both carbon dioxide pretreatment and the permethrin treated cloth. Following a 60min traverse of the treatment areas, adult tick numbers, almost entirely Amblyomma americanum, was reduced to zero within 1h and remained at or near zero for 24h. Treatments without CO2 also showed reduction of ticks to near zero within 1h, but the populations were no different than the control sections at 4h. This study demonstrates the efficacy of TickBot as a tick control device to significantly reduce the risk of tick bites and disease transmission to humans and companion animals visiting a previously tick-infested natural environment. Continued deployment of TickBot for additional days or weeks can assure a relatively tick-safe environment for enjoyment by the public. PMID:25499615

  7. Copepod abundance and species composition in the Eastern subtropical/tropical Atlantic

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schnack-Schiel, Sigrid B.; Mizdalski, Elke; Cornils, Astrid

    2010-12-01

    Abundance and species composition of copepods were studied during the expedition ANT XXI/1 on a latitudinal transect in the eastern Atlantic from 34°49.5'N to 27°28.1'S between 2-20 November 2002. Stratified zooplankton tows were carried out at 19 stations with a multiple opening-closing net between 300 m water depth and the surface. Cyclopoid and calanoid copepods showed similar patterns of distribution and abundance. Oithona was the most abundant cyclopoid genus, followed by Oncaea. A total of 149 calanoid copepod species were identified. Clausocalanus was by far the most abundant genus, comprising on average about 45% of all calanoids, followed by Calocalanus (13%), Delibus (9%), Paracalanus (6%), and Pleuromamma (5%). All other genera comprised on average less than 5% each, with 40 genera less than 1%. The calanoid copepod communities were distinguished broadly in accordance with sea surface temperature, separating the subtropical from the tropical stations, and were largely determined by variation in species composition and species abundance. Nine Clausocalanus species were identified. The most numerous Clausocalanus species was C. furcatus, which on average comprised half of all adult of this genus. C. pergens, C. paululus, and C. jobei, contributed an average of 19%, 9%, and 9%, respectively. The Clausocalanus species differed markedly in their horizontal and vertical distributions: C. furcatus, C. jobei, and C. mastigophorus had widespread distributions and inhabited the upper water layers. Major differences between the species were found in abundance. C. paululus and C. arcuicornis were biantitropical and were absent or occurred in very low numbers in the equatorial zone. C. parapergens was found at all stations and showed a bimodal distribution pattern with maxima in the subtropics. C. pergens occurred in higher numbers only at the southern stations, where it replaced C. furcatus in dominance. In contrast to the widespread species, the bulk of the C

  8. Evolutionary patterns of range size, abundance and species richness in Amazonian angiosperm trees

    PubMed Central

    Chave, Jérôme

    2016-01-01

    Amazonian tree species vary enormously in their total abundance and range size, while Amazonian tree genera vary greatly in species richness. The drivers of this variation are not well understood. Here, we construct a phylogenetic hypothesis that represents half of Amazonian tree genera in order to contribute to explaining the variation. We find several clear, broad-scale patterns. Firstly, there is significant phylogenetic signal for all three characteristics; closely related genera tend to have similar numbers of species and similar mean range size and abundance. Additionally, the species richness of genera shows a significant, negative relationship with the mean range size and abundance of their constituent species. Our results suggest that phylogenetically correlated intrinsic factors, namely traits of the genera themselves, shape among lineage variation in range size, abundance and species richness. We postulate that tree stature may be one particularly relevant trait. However, other traits may also be relevant, and our study reinforces the need for ambitious compilations of trait data for Amazonian trees. In the meantime, our study shows how large-scale phylogenies can help to elucidate, and contribute to explaining, macroecological and macroevolutionary patterns in hyperdiverse, yet poorly understood regions like the Amazon Basin.

  9. Evolutionary patterns of range size, abundance and species richness in Amazonian angiosperm trees

    PubMed Central

    Chave, Jérôme

    2016-01-01

    Amazonian tree species vary enormously in their total abundance and range size, while Amazonian tree genera vary greatly in species richness. The drivers of this variation are not well understood. Here, we construct a phylogenetic hypothesis that represents half of Amazonian tree genera in order to contribute to explaining the variation. We find several clear, broad-scale patterns. Firstly, there is significant phylogenetic signal for all three characteristics; closely related genera tend to have similar numbers of species and similar mean range size and abundance. Additionally, the species richness of genera shows a significant, negative relationship with the mean range size and abundance of their constituent species. Our results suggest that phylogenetically correlated intrinsic factors, namely traits of the genera themselves, shape among lineage variation in range size, abundance and species richness. We postulate that tree stature may be one particularly relevant trait. However, other traits may also be relevant, and our study reinforces the need for ambitious compilations of trait data for Amazonian trees. In the meantime, our study shows how large-scale phylogenies can help to elucidate, and contribute to explaining, macroecological and macroevolutionary patterns in hyperdiverse, yet poorly understood regions like the Amazon Basin. PMID:27651991

  10. Evolutionary patterns of range size, abundance and species richness in Amazonian angiosperm trees.

    PubMed

    Dexter, Kyle; Chave, Jérôme

    2016-01-01

    Amazonian tree species vary enormously in their total abundance and range size, while Amazonian tree genera vary greatly in species richness. The drivers of this variation are not well understood. Here, we construct a phylogenetic hypothesis that represents half of Amazonian tree genera in order to contribute to explaining the variation. We find several clear, broad-scale patterns. Firstly, there is significant phylogenetic signal for all three characteristics; closely related genera tend to have similar numbers of species and similar mean range size and abundance. Additionally, the species richness of genera shows a significant, negative relationship with the mean range size and abundance of their constituent species. Our results suggest that phylogenetically correlated intrinsic factors, namely traits of the genera themselves, shape among lineage variation in range size, abundance and species richness. We postulate that tree stature may be one particularly relevant trait. However, other traits may also be relevant, and our study reinforces the need for ambitious compilations of trait data for Amazonian trees. In the meantime, our study shows how large-scale phylogenies can help to elucidate, and contribute to explaining, macroecological and macroevolutionary patterns in hyperdiverse, yet poorly understood regions like the Amazon Basin.

  11. Evolutionary patterns of range size, abundance and species richness in Amazonian angiosperm trees.

    PubMed

    Dexter, Kyle; Chave, Jérôme

    2016-01-01

    Amazonian tree species vary enormously in their total abundance and range size, while Amazonian tree genera vary greatly in species richness. The drivers of this variation are not well understood. Here, we construct a phylogenetic hypothesis that represents half of Amazonian tree genera in order to contribute to explaining the variation. We find several clear, broad-scale patterns. Firstly, there is significant phylogenetic signal for all three characteristics; closely related genera tend to have similar numbers of species and similar mean range size and abundance. Additionally, the species richness of genera shows a significant, negative relationship with the mean range size and abundance of their constituent species. Our results suggest that phylogenetically correlated intrinsic factors, namely traits of the genera themselves, shape among lineage variation in range size, abundance and species richness. We postulate that tree stature may be one particularly relevant trait. However, other traits may also be relevant, and our study reinforces the need for ambitious compilations of trait data for Amazonian trees. In the meantime, our study shows how large-scale phylogenies can help to elucidate, and contribute to explaining, macroecological and macroevolutionary patterns in hyperdiverse, yet poorly understood regions like the Amazon Basin. PMID:27651991

  12. Species richness and relative abundance of birds in natural and anthropogenic fragments of Brazilian Atlantic forest.

    PubMed

    dos Anjos, Luiz

    2004-06-01

    Bird communities were studied in two types of fragmented habitat of Atlantic forest in the State of Paraná, southern Brazil; one consisted of forest fragments that were created as a result of human activities (forest remnants), the other consisted of a set of naturally occurring forest fragments (forest patches). Using quantitative data obtained by the point counts method in 3 forest patches and 3 forest remnants during one year, species richness and relative abundance were compared in those habitats, considering species groups according to their general feeding habits. Insectivores, omnivores, and frugivores presented similar general tendencies in both habitats (decrease of species number with decreasing size and increasing isolation of forest fragment). However, these tendencies were different, when considering the relative abundance data: the trunk insectivores presented the highest value in the smallest patch while the lowest relative abundance was in the smallest remnant. In the naturally fragmented landscape, time permitted that the loss of some species of trunk insectivores be compensated for the increase in abundance of other species. In contrast, the remnants essentially represented newly formed islands that are not yet at equilibrium and where future species losses would make them similar to the patches.

  13. Predators reduce abundance and species richness of coral reef fish recruits via non-selective predation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Heinlein, J. M.; Stier, A. C.; Steele, M. A.

    2010-06-01

    Predators have important effects on coral reef fish populations, but their effects on community structure have only recently been investigated and are not yet well understood. Here, the effect of predation on the diversity and abundance of young coral reef fishes was experimentally examined in Moorea, French Polynesia. Effects of predators were quantified by monitoring recruitment of fishes onto standardized patch reefs in predator-exclosure cages or uncaged reefs. At the end of the 54-day experiment, recruits were 74% less abundant on reefs exposed to predators than on caged ones, and species richness was 42% lower on reefs exposed to predators. Effects of predators varied somewhat among families, however, rarefaction analysis indicated that predators foraged non-selectively among species. These results indicate that predation can alter diversity of reef fish communities by indiscriminately reducing the abundance of fishes soon after settlement, thereby reducing the number of species present on reefs.

  14. Global correlations in tropical tree species richness and abundance reject neutrality.

    PubMed

    Ricklefs, Robert E; Renner, Susanne S

    2012-01-27

    Patterns of species richness and relative abundance at some scales cannot be distinguished from predictions of null models, including zero-sum neutral models of population change and random speciation-extinction models of evolutionary diversification. Both models predict that species richness or population abundance produced by independent iterations of the same processes in different regions should be uncorrelated. We find instead that the number of species and individuals in families of trees in forest plots are strongly correlated across Southeast Asia, Africa, and tropical America. These correlations imply that deterministic processes influenced by evolutionarily conservative family-level traits constrain the number of confamilial tree species and individuals that can be supported in regional species pools and local assemblages in humid tropical forests.

  15. Soil biota effects on local abundances of three grass species along a land-use gradient.

    PubMed

    Heinze, J; Werner, T; Weber, E; Rillig, M C; Joshi, J

    2015-09-01

    Biotic plant-soil interactions and land-use intensity are known to affect plant individual fitness as well as competitiveness and therefore plant-species abundances in communities. Therefore, a link between soil biota and land-use intensity on local abundance of plant species in grasslands can be expected. In two greenhouse experiments, we investigated the effects of soil biota from grassland sites differing in land-use intensity on three grass species that vary in local abundances along this land-use gradient. We were interested in those soil-biota effects that are associated with land-use intensity, and whether these effects act directly or indirectly. Therefore, we grew the three plant species in two separate experiments as single individuals and in mixtures and compared their performance. As single plants, all three grasses showed a similar performance with and without soil biota. In contrast, in mixtures growth of the species in response to the presence or absence of soil biota differed. This resulted in different soil-biota effects that tend to correspond with patterns of species-specific abundances in the field for two of the three species tested. Our results highlight the importance of indirect interactions between plants and soil microorganisms and suggest that combined effects of soil biota and plant-plant interactions are involved in structuring plant communities. In conclusion, our experiments suggest that soil biota may have the potential to alter effects of plant-plant interactions and therefore influence plant-species abundances and diversity in grasslands.

  16. Tick infestations (Acari: Ixodidae) on three lizard species from Seraidi (Annaba District), northeastern Algeria.

    PubMed

    Soualah-Alila, Hana; Bouslama, Zihad; Amr, Zuhair; Bani Hani, Rihan

    2015-09-01

    Parasitism of Ixodes ricinus on three species of lizards (Psammodromus algirus, Podarcis vaucheri and Timon pater) in northeastern Algeria was studied. Psammodromus algirus was the most preferred host, T. pater was least preferred. Nymphs of I. ricinus were found attached to lizards from March to August in various numbers. Most nymphs were collected during March, April and June for P. algirus, and most larvae from April until August. Larval stages were found to be mostly associated with P. vaucheri during the study period, with the highest number of recovered larvae in June.

  17. Using species abundance distribution models and diversity indices for biogeographical analyses

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fattorini, Simone; Rigal, François; Cardoso, Pedro; Borges, Paulo A. V.

    2016-01-01

    We examine whether Species Abundance Distribution models (SADs) and diversity indices can describe how species colonization status influences species community assembly on oceanic islands. Our hypothesis is that, because of the lack of source-sink dynamics at the archipelago scale, Single Island Endemics (SIEs), i.e. endemic species restricted to only one island, should be represented by few rare species and consequently have abundance patterns that differ from those of more widespread species. To test our hypothesis, we used arthropod data from the Azorean archipelago (North Atlantic). We divided the species into three colonization categories: SIEs, archipelagic endemics (AZEs, present in at least two islands) and native non-endemics (NATs). For each category, we modelled rank-abundance plots using both the geometric series and the Gambin model, a measure of distributional amplitude. We also calculated Shannon entropy and Buzas and Gibson's evenness. We show that the slopes of the regression lines modelling SADs were significantly higher for SIEs, which indicates a relative predominance of a few highly abundant species and a lack of rare species, which also depresses diversity indices. This may be a consequence of two factors: (i) some forest specialist SIEs may be at advantage over other, less adapted species; (ii) the entire populations of SIEs are by definition concentrated on a single island, without possibility for inter-island source-sink dynamics; hence all populations must have a minimum number of individuals to survive natural, often unpredictable, fluctuations. These findings are supported by higher values of the α parameter of the Gambin mode for SIEs. In contrast, AZEs and NATs had lower regression slopes, lower α but higher diversity indices, resulting from their widespread distribution over several islands. We conclude that these differences in the SAD models and diversity indices demonstrate that the study of these metrics is useful for

  18. Habitat partitioning by five congeneric and abundant Choerodon species (Labridae) in a large subtropical marine embayment

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fairclough, D. V.; Clarke, K. R.; Valesini, F. J.; Potter, I. C.

    2008-04-01

    The habitats occupied by the juveniles and adults of five morphologically similar, diurnally active and abundant Choerodon species in the large subtropical environment of Shark Bay, a "World Heritage Property" on the west coast of Australia, have been determined. The densities of the two life cycle stages of each Choerodon species in those habitats were used in various analyses to test the hypotheses that: (1) habitats are partitioned among these species and between their juveniles and adults; (2) such habitat partitioning is greatest in the case of the two Western Australian endemic species, i.e. Choerodon rubescens and Choerodon cauteroma; and (3) the extent of habitat partitioning between both of these two species and the only species that is widely distributed in the Indo-West Pacific, i.e. Choerodon schoenleinii, will be less pronounced. Initially, catches of each of the five congeneric species, obtained during other studies in Shark Bay by angling, spearfishing and otter trawling, were collated to elucidate the broad distribution of these species in that embayment. Underwater visual census was then used to determine the densities of the juveniles and adults of each Choerodon species at sites representing the four habitat types in which one or more of these species had been caught, i.e. reefs in marine waters at the western boundary of the bay and seagrass, reefs and rocky shorelines in the two inner gulfs. The compositions of the Choerodon species over marine (entrance channel) reefs and in seagrass were significantly different and each differed significantly from those in both inner gulf reefs and rocky shorelines, which were, however, not significantly different. Choerodon rubescens was restricted to exposed marine reefs, and thus occupied a different habitat and location of the bay than C. cauteroma, the other endemic species, which was almost exclusively confined to habitats found in the inner gulfs. Choerodon cauteroma differed from other Choerodon

  19. Species composition and seasonal abundance of Chaetognatha in the subtropical coastal waters of Hong Kong

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tse, P.; Hui, S. Y.; Wong, C. K.

    2007-06-01

    Species composition, species diversity and seasonal abundance of chaetognaths were studied in Tolo Harbour and the coastal waters of eastern Hong Kong. Tolo Harbour is a semi-enclosed and poorly flushed bay with a long history of eutrophication. It opens into the eastern coast of Hong Kong which is fully exposed to water currents from the South China Sea. Zooplankton samples were collected monthly from July 2003 to July 2005 at six stations. Twenty species of chaetognaths were identified. They included six species of the genus Aidanosagitta ( Aidanosagitta neglecta, Aidanosagitta delicata, Aidanosagitta johorensis, Aidanosagitta regularis, Aidanosagitta bedfordii and Aidanosagitta crassa), four species of the genus Zonosagitta ( Zonosagitta nagae, Zonosagitta bedoti, Zonosagitta bruuni and Zonosagitta pulchra), three species of the genus Ferosagitta ( Ferosagitta ferox, Ferosagitta tokiokai and Ferosagitta robusta) and one species each from the genera Serratosagitta ( Serratosagitta pacifica), Decipisagitta ( Decipisagitta decipiens), Flaccisagitta ( Flaccisagitta enflata), Krohnitta ( Krohnitta pacifica), Mesosagitta ( Mesosagitta minima), Pterosagitta ( Pterosagitta draco) and Sagitta ( Sagitta bipunctata). The most abundant species were Flaccisagitta enflata, A. neglecta and A. delicata. Averaged over the entire study period, the densities of Flaccisagitta enflata, A. neglecta and A. delicata were 9.3, 6.6 and 5.2 ind. m -3, respectively. Overall, these species constituted 39.7%, 28.2% and 22.0% of all chaetognaths collected in the study. Averaged over the entire study, the density of most of the low abundance species was <0.6 ind. m -3. Flaccisagitta enflata occurred throughout the year at all sampling stations. Aidanosagitta neglecta occurred at all sampling stations, but was most common in summer. Aidanosagitta delicata was most common in Tolo Harbour during summer. Tolo Harbour supported larger populations, but fewer species of chaetognaths than the

  20. Tree species composition affects the abundance of rowan (Sorbus aucuparia L.) in urban forests in Finland.

    PubMed

    Hamberg, Leena; Lehvävirta, Susanna; Kotze, D Johan; Heikkinen, Juha

    2015-03-15

    Recent studies have shown a considerable increase in the abundance of rowan (Sorbus aucuparia) saplings in urban forests in Finland, yet the reasons for this increase are not well understood. Here we investigated whether canopy cover or tree species composition, i.e., the basal areas of different tree species in Norway spruce dominated urban forests, affects the abundances of rowan seedlings, saplings and trees. Altogether 24 urban forest patches were investigated. We sampled the number of rowan and other saplings, and calculated the basal areas of trees. We showed that rowan abundance was affected by tree species composition. The basal area of rowan trees (≥ 5 cm in diameter at breast height, dbh) decreased with increasing basal area of Norway spruce, while the cover of rowan seedlings increased with an increase in Norway spruce basal area. However, a decrease in the abundance of birch (Betula pendula) and an increase in the broad-leaved tree group (Acer platanoides, Alnus glutinosa, Alnus incana, Amelanchier spicata, Prunus padus, Quercus robur, Rhamnus frangula and Salix caprea) coincided with a decreasing number of rowans. Furthermore, rowan saplings were scarce in the vicinity of mature rowan trees. Although it seems that tree species composition has an effect on rowan, the relationship between rowan saplings and mature trees is complex, and therefore we conclude that regulating tree species composition is not an easy way to keep rowan thickets under control in urban forests in Finland. PMID:25588119

  1. Tree species composition affects the abundance of rowan (Sorbus aucuparia L.) in urban forests in Finland.

    PubMed

    Hamberg, Leena; Lehvävirta, Susanna; Kotze, D Johan; Heikkinen, Juha

    2015-03-15

    Recent studies have shown a considerable increase in the abundance of rowan (Sorbus aucuparia) saplings in urban forests in Finland, yet the reasons for this increase are not well understood. Here we investigated whether canopy cover or tree species composition, i.e., the basal areas of different tree species in Norway spruce dominated urban forests, affects the abundances of rowan seedlings, saplings and trees. Altogether 24 urban forest patches were investigated. We sampled the number of rowan and other saplings, and calculated the basal areas of trees. We showed that rowan abundance was affected by tree species composition. The basal area of rowan trees (≥ 5 cm in diameter at breast height, dbh) decreased with increasing basal area of Norway spruce, while the cover of rowan seedlings increased with an increase in Norway spruce basal area. However, a decrease in the abundance of birch (Betula pendula) and an increase in the broad-leaved tree group (Acer platanoides, Alnus glutinosa, Alnus incana, Amelanchier spicata, Prunus padus, Quercus robur, Rhamnus frangula and Salix caprea) coincided with a decreasing number of rowans. Furthermore, rowan saplings were scarce in the vicinity of mature rowan trees. Although it seems that tree species composition has an effect on rowan, the relationship between rowan saplings and mature trees is complex, and therefore we conclude that regulating tree species composition is not an easy way to keep rowan thickets under control in urban forests in Finland.

  2. Driving forces for changes in geographical distribution of Ixodes ricinus ticks in Europe.

    PubMed

    Medlock, Jolyon M; Hansford, Kayleigh M; Bormane, Antra; Derdakova, Marketa; Estrada-Peña, Agustín; George, Jean-Claude; Golovljova, Irina; Jaenson, Thomas G T; Jensen, Jens-Kjeld; Jensen, Per M; Kazimirova, Maria; Oteo, José A; Papa, Anna; Pfister, Kurt; Plantard, Olivier; Randolph, Sarah E; Rizzoli, Annapaola; Santos-Silva, Maria Margarida; Sprong, Hein; Vial, Laurence; Hendrickx, Guy; Zeller, Herve; Van Bortel, Wim

    2013-01-01

    Many factors are involved in determining the latitudinal and altitudinal spread of the important tick vector Ixodes ricinus (Acari: Ixodidae) in Europe, as well as in changes in the distribution within its prior endemic zones. This paper builds on published literature and unpublished expert opinion from the VBORNET network with the aim of reviewing the evidence for these changes in Europe and discusses the many climatic, ecological, landscape and anthropogenic drivers. These can be divided into those directly related to climatic change, contributing to an expansion in the tick's geographic range at extremes of altitude in central Europe, and at extremes of latitude in Scandinavia; those related to changes in the distribution of tick hosts, particularly roe deer and other cervids; other ecological changes such as habitat connectivity and changes in land management; and finally, anthropogenically induced changes. These factors are strongly interlinked and often not well quantified. Although a change in climate plays an important role in certain geographic regions, for much of Europe it is non-climatic factors that are becoming increasingly important. How we manage habitats on a landscape scale, and the changes in the distribution and abundance of tick hosts are important considerations during our assessment and management of the public health risks associated with ticks and tick-borne disease issues in 21(st) century Europe. Better understanding and mapping of the spread of I. ricinus (and changes in its abundance) is, however, essential to assess the risk of the spread of infections transmitted by this vector species. Enhanced tick surveillance with harmonized approaches for comparison of data enabling the follow-up of trends at EU level will improve the messages on risk related to tick-borne diseases to policy makers, other stake holders and to the general public. PMID:23281838

  3. Species abundance distribution and population dynamics in a two-community model of neutral ecology

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vallade, M.; Houchmandzadeh, B.

    2006-11-01

    Explicit formulas for the steady-state distribution of species in two interconnected communities of arbitrary sizes are derived in the framework of Hubbell’s neutral model of biodiversity. Migrations of seeds from both communities as well as mutations in both of them are taken into account. These results generalize those previously obtained for the “island-continent” model and they allow an analysis of the influence of the ratio of the sizes of the two communities on the dominance/diversity equilibrium. Exact expressions for species abundance distributions are deduced from a master equation for the joint probability distribution of species in the two communities. Moreover, an approximate self-consistent solution is derived. It corresponds to a generalization of previous results and it proves to be accurate over a broad range of parameters. The dynamical correlations between the abundances of a species in both communities are also discussed.

  4. Does beach nourishment have long-term effects on intertidal macroinvertebrate species abundance?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Leewis, Lies; van Bodegom, Peter M.; Rozema, Jelte; Janssen, Gerard M.

    2012-11-01

    Coastal squeeze is the largest threat for sandy coastal areas. To mitigate seaward threats, erosion and sea level rise, sand nourishment is commonly applied. However, its long-term consequences for macroinvertebrate fauna, critical to most ecosystem services of sandy coasts, are still unknown. Seventeen sandy beaches - nourished and controls - were sampled along a chronosequence to investigate the abundance of four dominant macrofauna species and their relations with nourishment year and relevant coastal environmental variables. Dean's parameter and latitude significantly explained the abundance of the spionid polychaete Scolelepis squamata, Beach Index (BI), sand skewness, beach slope and latitude explained the abundance of the amphipod Haustorius arenarius and Relative Tide Range (RTR), recreation and sand sorting explained the abundance of Bathyporeia sarsi. For Eurydice pulchra, no environmental variable explained its abundance. For H. arenarius, E. pulchra and B. sarsi, there was no relation with nourishment year, indicating that recovery took place within a year after nourishment. Scolelepis squamata initially profited from the nourishment with "over-recolonisation". This confirms its role as an opportunistic species, thereby altering the initial community structure on a beach after nourishment. We conclude that the responses of the four dominant invertebrates studied in the years following beach nourishment are species specific. This shows the importance of knowing the autecology of the sandy beach macroinvertebrate fauna in order to be able to mitigate the effects of beach nourishment and other environmental impacts.

  5. The Distribution and Abundance of Bird Species: Towards a Satellite, Data Driven Avian Energetics and Species Richness Model

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Smith, James A.

    2003-01-01

    This paper addresses the fundamental question of why birds occur where and when they do, i.e., what are the causative factors that determine the spatio-temporal distributions, abundance, or richness of bird species? In this paper we outline the first steps toward building a satellite, data-driven model of avian energetics and species richness based on individual bird physiology, morphology, and interaction with the spatio-temporal habitat. To evaluate our model, we will use the North American Breeding Bird Survey and Christmas Bird Count data for species richness, wintering and breeding range. Long term and current satellite data series include AVHRR, Landsat, and MODIS.

  6. Plankton studies in San Francisco Bay; IV, Phytoplankton abundance and species composition, January 1980 - February 1981

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Wong, R.L.; Cloern, J.E.

    1982-01-01

    Data are presented on the phytoplankton species composition and abundance in San Francisco Bay from January 1980 through February 1981. Phytoplankton were identified and enumerated in surface samples collected approximately every two weeks at selected stations in the main channel of the Bay, and at shoal stations in the central portion of South San Francisco Bay, San Pablo Bay, and Suisun Bay. Also reported are separate species lists for microphytoplankton (< 60 micrometers) and macrophytoplankton (> 60 micrometers). (Author 's abstract)

  7. Individualistic sensitivities and exposure to climate change explain variation in species' distribution and abundance changes.

    PubMed

    Palmer, Georgina; Hill, Jane K; Brereton, Tom M; Brooks, David R; Chapman, Jason W; Fox, Richard; Oliver, Tom H; Thomas, Chris D

    2015-10-01

    The responses of animals and plants to recent climate change vary greatly from species to species, but attempts to understand this variation have met with limited success. This has led to concerns that predictions of responses are inherently uncertain because of the complexity of interacting drivers and biotic interactions. However, we show for an exemplar group of 155 Lepidoptera species that about 60% of the variation among species in their abundance trends over the past four decades can be explained by species-specific exposure and sensitivity to climate change. Distribution changes were less well predicted, but nonetheless, up to 53% of the variation was explained. We found that species vary in their overall sensitivity to climate and respond to different components of the climate despite ostensibly experiencing the same climate changes. Hence, species have undergone different levels of population "forcing" (exposure), driving variation among species in their national-scale abundance and distribution trends. We conclude that variation in species' responses to recent climate change may be more predictable than previously recognized. PMID:26601276

  8. Individualistic sensitivities and exposure to climate change explain variation in species' distribution and abundance changes.

    PubMed

    Palmer, Georgina; Hill, Jane K; Brereton, Tom M; Brooks, David R; Chapman, Jason W; Fox, Richard; Oliver, Tom H; Thomas, Chris D

    2015-10-01

    The responses of animals and plants to recent climate change vary greatly from species to species, but attempts to understand this variation have met with limited success. This has led to concerns that predictions of responses are inherently uncertain because of the complexity of interacting drivers and biotic interactions. However, we show for an exemplar group of 155 Lepidoptera species that about 60% of the variation among species in their abundance trends over the past four decades can be explained by species-specific exposure and sensitivity to climate change. Distribution changes were less well predicted, but nonetheless, up to 53% of the variation was explained. We found that species vary in their overall sensitivity to climate and respond to different components of the climate despite ostensibly experiencing the same climate changes. Hence, species have undergone different levels of population "forcing" (exposure), driving variation among species in their national-scale abundance and distribution trends. We conclude that variation in species' responses to recent climate change may be more predictable than previously recognized.

  9. Estimating species - area relationships by modeling abundance and frequency subject to incomplete sampling.

    PubMed

    Yamaura, Yuichi; Connor, Edward F; Royle, J Andrew; Itoh, Katsuo; Sato, Kiyoshi; Taki, Hisatomo; Mishima, Yoshio

    2016-07-01

    Models and data used to describe species-area relationships confound sampling with ecological process as they fail to acknowledge that estimates of species richness arise due to sampling. This compromises our ability to make ecological inferences from and about species-area relationships. We develop and illustrate hierarchical community models of abundance and frequency to estimate species richness. The models we propose separate sampling from ecological processes by explicitly accounting for the fact that sampled patches are seldom completely covered by sampling plots and that individuals present in the sampling plots are imperfectly detected. We propose a multispecies abundance model in which community assembly is treated as the summation of an ensemble of species-level Poisson processes and estimate patch-level species richness as a derived parameter. We use sampling process models appropriate for specific survey methods. We propose a multispecies frequency model that treats the number of plots in which a species occurs as a binomial process. We illustrate these models using data collected in surveys of early-successional bird species and plants in young forest plantation patches. Results indicate that only mature forest plant species deviated from the constant density hypothesis, but the null model suggested that the deviations were too small to alter the form of species-area relationships. Nevertheless, results from simulations clearly show that the aggregate pattern of individual species density-area relationships and occurrence probability-area relationships can alter the form of species-area relationships. The plant community model estimated that only half of the species present in the regional species pool were encountered during the survey. The modeling framework we propose explicitly accounts for sampling processes so that ecological processes can be examined free of sampling artefacts. Our modeling approach is extensible and could be applied to a

  10. Estimating species - area relationships by modeling abundance and frequency subject to incomplete sampling.

    PubMed

    Yamaura, Yuichi; Connor, Edward F; Royle, J Andrew; Itoh, Katsuo; Sato, Kiyoshi; Taki, Hisatomo; Mishima, Yoshio

    2016-07-01

    Models and data used to describe species-area relationships confound sampling with ecological process as they fail to acknowledge that estimates of species richness arise due to sampling. This compromises our ability to make ecological inferences from and about species-area relationships. We develop and illustrate hierarchical community models of abundance and frequency to estimate species richness. The models we propose separate sampling from ecological processes by explicitly accounting for the fact that sampled patches are seldom completely covered by sampling plots and that individuals present in the sampling plots are imperfectly detected. We propose a multispecies abundance model in which community assembly is treated as the summation of an ensemble of species-level Poisson processes and estimate patch-level species richness as a derived parameter. We use sampling process models appropriate for specific survey methods. We propose a multispecies frequency model that treats the number of plots in which a species occurs as a binomial process. We illustrate these models using data collected in surveys of early-successional bird species and plants in young forest plantation patches. Results indicate that only mature forest plant species deviated from the constant density hypothesis, but the null model suggested that the deviations were too small to alter the form of species-area relationships. Nevertheless, results from simulations clearly show that the aggregate pattern of individual species density-area relationships and occurrence probability-area relationships can alter the form of species-area relationships. The plant community model estimated that only half of the species present in the regional species pool were encountered during the survey. The modeling framework we propose explicitly accounts for sampling processes so that ecological processes can be examined free of sampling artefacts. Our modeling approach is extensible and could be applied to a

  11. Estimating Lion Abundance using N-mixture Models for Social Species

    PubMed Central

    Belant, Jerrold L.; Bled, Florent; Wilton, Clay M.; Fyumagwa, Robert; Mwampeta, Stanslaus B.; Beyer, Dean E.

    2016-01-01

    Declining populations of large carnivores worldwide, and the complexities of managing human-carnivore conflicts, require accurate population estimates of large carnivores to promote their long-term persistence through well-informed management We used N-mixture models to estimate lion (Panthera leo) abundance from call-in and track surveys in southeastern Serengeti National Park, Tanzania. Because of potential habituation to broadcasted calls and social behavior, we developed a hierarchical observation process within the N-mixture model conditioning lion detectability on their group response to call-ins and individual detection probabilities. We estimated 270 lions (95% credible interval = 170–551) using call-ins but were unable to estimate lion abundance from track data. We found a weak negative relationship between predicted track density and predicted lion abundance from the call-in surveys. Luminosity was negatively correlated with individual detection probability during call-in surveys. Lion abundance and track density were influenced by landcover, but direction of the corresponding effects were undetermined. N-mixture models allowed us to incorporate multiple parameters (e.g., landcover, luminosity, observer effect) influencing lion abundance and probability of detection directly into abundance estimates. We suggest that N-mixture models employing a hierarchical observation process can be used to estimate abundance of other social, herding, and grouping species. PMID:27786283

  12. Regular Patterns for Proteome-Wide Distribution of Protein Abundance across Species

    PubMed Central

    Jiang, Ying; Ying, Wantao; Wu, Songfeng; Zhu, Yunping; Liu, Siqi; Yang, Pengyuan; Qian, Xiaohong; He, Fuchu

    2012-01-01

    A proteome of the bio-entity, including cell, tissue, organ, and organism, consists of proteins of diverse abundance. The principle that determines the abundance of different proteins in a proteome is of fundamental significance for an understanding of the building blocks of the bio-entity. Here, we report three regular patterns in the proteome-wide distribution of protein abundance across species such as human, mouse, fly, worm, yeast, and bacteria: in most cases, protein abundance is positively correlated with the protein's origination time or sequence conservation during evolution; it is negatively correlated with the protein's domain number and positively correlated with domain coverage in protein structure, and the correlations became stronger during the course of evolution; protein abundance can be further stratified by the function of the protein, whereby proteins that act on material conversion and transportation (mass category) are more abundant than those that act on information modulation (information category). Thus, protein abundance is intrinsically related to the protein's inherent characters of evolution, structure, and function. PMID:22427835

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

    PubMed

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

    2015-07-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2015-07-01

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

  15. Observed and predicted effects of climate change on species abundance in protected areas

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Johnston, Alison; Ausden, Malcolm; Dodd, Andrew M.; Bradbury, Richard B.; Chamberlain, Dan E.; Jiguet, Frédéric; Thomas, Chris D.; Cook, Aonghais S. C. P.; Newson, Stuart E.; Ockendon, Nancy; Rehfisch, Mark M.; Roos, Staffan; Thaxter, Chris B.; Brown, Andy; Crick, Humphrey Q. P.; Douse, Andrew; McCall, Rob A.; Pontier, Helen; Stroud, David A.; Cadiou, Bernard; Crowe, Olivia; Deceuninck, Bernard; Hornman, Menno; Pearce-Higgins, James W.

    2013-12-01

    The dynamic nature and diversity of species' responses to climate change poses significant difficulties for developing robust, long-term conservation strategies. One key question is whether existing protected area networks will remain effective in a changing climate. To test this, we developed statistical models that link climate to the abundance of internationally important bird populations in northwestern Europe. Spatial climate-abundance models were able to predict 56% of the variation in recent 30-year population trends. Using these models, future climate change resulting in 4.0°C global warming was projected to cause declines of at least 25% for more than half of the internationally important populations considered. Nonetheless, most EU Special Protection Areas in the UK were projected to retain species in sufficient abundances to maintain their legal status, and generally sites that are important now were projected to be important in the future. The biological and legal resilience of this network of protected areas is derived from the capacity for turnover in the important species at each site as species' distributions and abundances alter in response to climate. Current protected areas are therefore predicted to remain important for future conservation in a changing climate.

  16. Detection of Severe Fever with Thrombocytopenia Syndrome Virus from Wild Animals and Ixodidae Ticks in the Republic of Korea.

    PubMed

    Oh, Sung-Suck; Chae, Jeong-Byoung; Kang, Jun-Gu; Kim, Heung-Chul; Chong, Sung-Tae; Shin, Jeong-Hwa; Hur, Moon-Suk; Suh, Jae-Hwa; Oh, Myoung-Don; Jeong, Soo-Myoung; Shin, Nam-Shik; Choi, Kyoung-Seong; Chae, Joon-Seok

    2016-06-01

    Severe fever with thrombocytopenia syndrome (SFTS) is caused by SFTS virus (SFTSV), a novel bunyavirus reported to be endemic to central-northeastern China, southern Japan, and the Republic of Korea (ROK). To investigate SFTSV infections, we collected serum samples and ticks from wild animals. Using serum samples and ticks, SFTSV-specific genes were amplified by one-step RT-PCR and nested PCR and sequenced. Indirect immunofluorescence assay (IFA) was performed to analyze virus-specific antibody levels in wild animals. Serum samples were collected from a total of 91 animals: 21 Korean water deer (KWD), 3 Siberian roe deer, 5 gorals, 7 raccoon dogs, 54 wild boars (WBs), and 1 carrion crow. The SFTSV infection rate in wild animals was 3.30% (3 of 91 animals: 1 KWD and 2 WBs). The seropositive rate was 6.59% (6 of 91 animals: 5 KWD and 1 WB). A total of 891 ticks (3 species) were collected from 65 wild animals (9 species). Of the attached tick species, Haemaphysalis longicornis (74.86%) was the most abundant, followed by Haemaphysalis flava (20.20%) and Ixodes nipponensis (4.94%). The average minimum infection rate (MIR) of SFTSV in ticks was 4.98%. The MIRs of H. longicornis, H. flava, and I. nipponensis were 4.51%, 2.22%, and 22.73%, respectively. The MIRs of larvae, nymphs, and adult ticks were 0.68%, 6.88%, and 5.53%, respectively. In addition, the MIRs of fed and unfed ticks were 4.67% and 4.96%, respectively. We detected a low SFTSV infection rate in wild animals, no differences in SFTSV infection rate with respect to bloodsucking in ticks, and SFTSV infection for all developmental stages of ticks. This is the first report describing the detection of SFTSV in wild animals in the ROK. PMID:27043361

  17. Detection of Severe Fever with Thrombocytopenia Syndrome Virus from Wild Animals and Ixodidae Ticks in the Republic of Korea.

    PubMed

    Oh, Sung-Suck; Chae, Jeong-Byoung; Kang, Jun-Gu; Kim, Heung-Chul; Chong, Sung-Tae; Shin, Jeong-Hwa; Hur, Moon-Suk; Suh, Jae-Hwa; Oh, Myoung-Don; Jeong, Soo-Myoung; Shin, Nam-Shik; Choi, Kyoung-Seong; Chae, Joon-Seok

    2016-06-01

    Severe fever with thrombocytopenia syndrome (SFTS) is caused by SFTS virus (SFTSV), a novel bunyavirus reported to be endemic to central-northeastern China, southern Japan, and the Republic of Korea (ROK). To investigate SFTSV infections, we collected serum samples and ticks from wild animals. Using serum samples and ticks, SFTSV-specific genes were amplified by one-step RT-PCR and nested PCR and sequenced. Indirect immunofluorescence assay (IFA) was performed to analyze virus-specific antibody levels in wild animals. Serum samples were collected from a total of 91 animals: 21 Korean water deer (KWD), 3 Siberian roe deer, 5 gorals, 7 raccoon dogs, 54 wild boars (WBs), and 1 carrion crow. The SFTSV infection rate in wild animals was 3.30% (3 of 91 animals: 1 KWD and 2 WBs). The seropositive rate was 6.59% (6 of 91 animals: 5 KWD and 1 WB). A total of 891 ticks (3 species) were collected from 65 wild animals (9 species). Of the attached tick species, Haemaphysalis longicornis (74.86%) was the most abundant, followed by Haemaphysalis flava (20.20%) and Ixodes nipponensis (4.94%). The average minimum infection rate (MIR) of SFTSV in ticks was 4.98%. The MIRs of H. longicornis, H. flava, and I. nipponensis were 4.51%, 2.22%, and 22.73%, respectively. The MIRs of larvae, nymphs, and adult ticks were 0.68%, 6.88%, and 5.53%, respectively. In addition, the MIRs of fed and unfed ticks were 4.67% and 4.96%, respectively. We detected a low SFTSV infection rate in wild animals, no differences in SFTSV infection rate with respect to bloodsucking in ticks, and SFTSV infection for all developmental stages of ticks. This is the first report describing the detection of SFTSV in wild animals in the ROK.

  18. Consequences of organic farming and landscape heterogeneity for species richness and abundance of farmland birds.

    PubMed

    Smith, Henrik G; Dänhardt, Juliana; Lindström, Ake; Rundlöf, Maj

    2010-04-01

    It has been suggested that organic farming may benefit farmland biodiversity more in landscapes that have lost a significant part of its former landscape heterogeneity. We tested this hypothesis by comparing bird species richness and abundance during the breeding season in organic and conventional farms, matched to eliminate all differences not directly linked to the farming practice, situated in either homogeneous plains with only a little semi-natural habitat or in heterogeneous farmland landscapes with abundant field borders and semi-natural grasslands. The effect of farm management on species richness interacted with landscape structure, such that there was a positive relationship between organic farming and diversity only in homogeneous landscapes. This pattern was mainly dependent on the species richness of passerine birds, in particular those that were invertebrate feeders. Species richness of non-passerines was positively related to organic farming independent of the landscape context. Bird abundance was positively related to landscape heterogeneity but not to farm management. This was mainly because the abundance of passerines, particularly invertebrate feeders, was positively related to landscape heterogeneity. We suggest that invertebrate feeders particularly benefit from organic farming because of improved foraging conditions through increased invertebrate abundances in otherwise depauperate homogeneous landscapes. Although many seed-eaters also benefit from increased insect abundance, they may also utilize crop seed resources in homogeneous landscapes and conventional farms. The occurrence of an interactive effect of organic farming and landscape heterogeneity on bird diversity will have consequences for the optimal allocation of resources to restore the diversity of farmland birds.

  19. Do predators control prey species abundance? An experimental test with brown treesnakes on Guam.

    PubMed

    Campbell, Earl W; Adams, Amy A Yackel; Converse, Sarah J; Fritts, Thomas H; Rodda, Gordon H

    2012-05-01

    The effect of predators on the abundance of prey species is a topic of ongoing debate in ecology; the effect of snake predators on their prey has been less debated, as there exists a general consensus that snakes do not negatively influence the abundance of their prey. However, this viewpoint has not been adequately tested. We quantified the effect of brown treesnake (Boiga irregularis) predation on the abundance and size of lizards on Guam by contrasting lizards in two 1-ha treatment plots of secondary forest from which snakes had been removed and excluded vs. two 1-ha control plots in which snakes were monitored but not removed or excluded. We removed resident snakes from the treatment plots with snake traps and hand capture, and snake immigration into these plots was precluded by electrified snake barriers. Lizards were sampled in all plots quarterly for a year following snake elimination in the treatment plots. Following the completion of this experiment, we used total removal sampling to census lizards on a 100-m2 subsample of each plot. Results of systematic lizard population monitoring before and after snake removal suggest that the abundance of the skink, Carlia ailanpalai, increased substantially and the abundance of two species of gekkonids, Lepidodactylus lugubris and Hemidactylus frenatus, also increased on snake-free plots. No treatment effect was observed for the skink Emoia caeruleocauda. Mean snout-vent length of all lizard species only increased following snake removal in the treatment plots. The general increase in prey density and mean size was unexpected in light of the literature consensus that snakes do not control the abundance of their prey species. Our findings show that, at least where alternate predators are lacking, snakes may indeed affect prey populations.

  20. Do predators control prey species abundance? An experimental test with brown treesnakes on Guam

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Campbell, Earl W.; Yackel Adams, Amy A.; Converse, Sarah J.; Fritts, Thomas H.; Rodda, Gordon H.

    2012-01-01

    The effect of predators on the abundance of prey species is a topic of ongoing debate in ecology; the effect of snake predators on their prey has been less debated, as there exists a general consensus that snakes do not negatively influence the abundance of their prey. However, this viewpoint has not been adequately tested. We quantified the effect of brown treesnake (Boiga irregularis) predation on the abundance and size of lizards on Guam by contrasting lizards in two 1-ha treatment plots of secondary forest from which snakes had been removed and excluded vs. two 1-ha control plots in which snakes were monitored but not removed or excluded. We removed resident snakes from the treatment plots with snake traps and hand capture, and snake immigration into these plots was precluded by electrified snake barriers. Lizards were sampled in all plots quarterly for a year following snake elimination in the treatment plots. Following the completion of this experiment, we used total removal sampling to census lizards on a 100-m2 subsample of each plot. Results of systematic lizard population monitoring before and after snake removal suggest that the abundance of the skink, Carlia ailanpalai, increased substantially and the abundance of two species of gekkonids, Lepidodactylus lugubris and Hemidactylus frenatus, also increased on snake-free plots. No treatment effect was observed for the skink Emoia caeruleocauda. Mean snout–vent length of all lizard species only increased following snake removal in the treatment plots. The general increase in prey density and mean size was unexpected in light of the literature consensus that snakes do not control the abundance of their prey species. Our findings show that, at least where alternate predators are lacking, snakes may indeed affect prey populations.

  1. Quantifying dilution and amplification in a community of hosts for tick-borne pathogens.

    PubMed

    Levi, Taal; Keesing, Felicia; Holt, Robert D; Barfield, Michael; Ostfeld, Richard S

    2016-03-01

    Recent controversy over whether biodiversity reduces disease risk (dilution effect) has focused on the ecology of Lyme disease, a tick-borne zoonosis. A criticism of the dilution effect is that increasing host species richness might amplify disease risk, assuming that total host abundance, and therefore feeding opportunities for ticks, increase with species richness. In contrast, a dilution effect is expected when poor quality hosts for ticks and pathogens (dilution hosts) divert tick blood meals away from competent hosts. Even if host densities are additive, the relationship between host density and tick encounters can be nonlinear if the number of ticks that encounter a host is a saturating function of host density, which occurs if ticks aggregate on the remaining hosts rather than failing to find a host before death. Both dilution and amplification are theoretical possibilities, and assessing which is more prevalent required detailed analyses of empirical systems. We used field data to explore the degree of tick redistribution onto fewer individuals with variation in intraspecific host density and novel data-driven models for tick dynamics to determine how changes in vertebrate community composition influence the density of nymphs infected with the Lyme bacterium. To be conservative, we allowed total host density to increase additively with species richness. Our long-term field studies found that larval and nymphal ticks redistribute onto fewer individuals as host densities decline, that a large proportion of nymphs and adults find hosts, and that mice and chipmunks feed a large proportion of nymphs. White-footed mice, eastern chipmunks, short-tailed shrews, and masked shrews were important amplification hosts that greatly increased the density of infected nymphs. Gray squirrels and Virginia opossums were important dilution hosts. Removing these two species increased the maximum number of larvae attached to amplification hosts by 57%. Raccoons and birds were

  2. Quantifying dilution and amplification in a community of hosts for tick-borne pathogens.

    PubMed

    Levi, Taal; Keesing, Felicia; Holt, Robert D; Barfield, Michael; Ostfeld, Richard S

    2016-03-01

    Recent controversy over whether biodiversity reduces disease risk (dilution effect) has focused on the ecology of Lyme disease, a tick-borne zoonosis. A criticism of the dilution effect is that increasing host species richness might amplify disease risk, assuming that total host abundance, and therefore feeding opportunities for ticks, increase with species richness. In contrast, a dilution effect is expected when poor quality hosts for ticks and pathogens (dilution hosts) divert tick blood meals away from competent hosts. Even if host densities are additive, the relationship between host density and tick encounters can be nonlinear if the number of ticks that encounter a host is a saturating function of host density, which occurs if ticks aggregate on the remaining hosts rather than failing to find a host before death. Both dilution and amplification are theoretical possibilities, and assessing which is more prevalent required detailed analyses of empirical systems. We used field data to explore the degree of tick redistribution onto fewer individuals with variation in intraspecific host density and novel data-driven models for tick dynamics to determine how changes in vertebrate community composition influence the density of nymphs infected with the Lyme bacterium. To be conservative, we allowed total host density to increase additively with species richness. Our long-term field studies found that larval and nymphal ticks redistribute onto fewer individuals as host densities decline, that a large proportion of nymphs and adults find hosts, and that mice and chipmunks feed a large proportion of nymphs. White-footed mice, eastern chipmunks, short-tailed shrews, and masked shrews were important amplification hosts that greatly increased the density of infected nymphs. Gray squirrels and Virginia opossums were important dilution hosts. Removing these two species increased the maximum number of larvae attached to amplification hosts by 57%. Raccoons and birds were

  3. Effects of land-use intensity on arthropod species abundance distributions in grasslands.

    PubMed

    Simons, Nadja K; Gossner, Martin M; Lewinsohn, Thomas M; Lange, Markus; Türke, Manfred; Weisser, Wolfgang W

    2015-01-01

    As a rule, communities consist of few abundant and many rare species, which is reflected in the characteristic shape of species abundance distributions (SADs). The processes that shape these SADs have been a longstanding problem for ecological research. Although many studies found strong negative effects of increasing land-use intensity on diversity, few reports consider land-use effects on SADs. Arthropods (insects and spiders) were sampled on 142 grassland plots in three regions in Germany, which were managed with different modes (mowing, fertilization and/or grazing) and intensities of land use. We analysed the effect of land use on three parameters characterizing the shape of SADs: abundance decay rate (the steepness of the rank abundance curve, represented by the niche-preemption model parameter), dominance (Berger-Parker dominance) and rarity (Fisher's alpha). Furthermore, we tested the core-satellite hypothesis by comparing the species' rank within the SAD to their distribution over the land-use gradient. When data on Araneae, Cicadina, Coleoptera, Heteroptera and Orthoptera were combined, abundance decay rate increased with combined land-use intensity (including all modes). Among the single land-use modes, increasing fertilization and grazing intensity increased the decay rate of all taxa, while increasing mowing frequency significantly affected the decay rate only in interaction with fertilization. Results of single taxa differed in their details, but all significant interaction effects included fertilization intensity. Dominance generally increased with increasing fertilization and rarity decreased with increasing grazing or mowing intensity, despite small differences among taxa and regions. The majority of species found on <10% of the plots per region were generally rare (<10 individuals), which is in accordance with the core-satellite hypothesis. We found significant differences in the rarity and dominance of species between plots of low and high

  4. Habitat Selection and Temporal Abundance Fluctuations of Demersal Cartilaginous Species in the Aegean Sea (Eastern Mediterranean)

    PubMed Central

    Maravelias, Christos D.; Tserpes, George; Pantazi, Maria; Peristeraki, Panagiota

    2012-01-01

    Predicting the occurrence of keystone top predators in a multispecies marine environment, such as the Mediterranean Sea, can be of considerable value to the long-term sustainable development of the fishing industry and to the protection of biodiversity. We analysed fisheries independent scientific bottom trawl survey data of two of the most abundant cartilaginous fish species (Scyliorhinus canicula, Raja clavata) in the Aegean Sea covering an 11-year sampling period. The current findings revealed a declining trend in R. clavata and S. canicula abundance from the late ′90 s until 2004. Habitats with the higher probability of finding cartilaginous fish present were those located in intermediate waters (depth: 200–400 m). The present results also indicated a preferential species' clustering in specific geographic and bathymetric regions of the Aegean Sea. Depth appeared to be one of the key determining factors for the selection of habitats for all species examined. With cartilaginous fish species being among the more biologically sensitive fish species taken in European marine fisheries, our findings, which are based on a standardized scientific survey, can contribute to the rational exploitation and management of their stocks by providing important information on temporal abundance trends and habitat preferences. PMID:22536389

  5. Spatial predictability of juvenile fish species richness and abundance in a coral reef environment

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mellin, C.; Andréfouët, S.; Ponton, D.

    2007-12-01

    Juvenile reef fish communities represent an essential component of coral reef ecosystems in the current focus of fish population dynamics and coral reef resilience. Juvenile fish survival depends on habitat characteristics and is, following settlement, the first determinant of the number of individuals within adult populations. The goal of this study was to provide methods for mapping juvenile fish species richness and abundance into spatial domains suitable for micro and meso-scale analysis and management decisions. Generalized Linear Models predicting juvenile fish species richness and abundance were developed according to spatial and temporal environmental variables measured from 10 m up to 10 km in the southwest lagoon of New Caledonia. The statistical model was further spatially generalized using a 1.5-m resolution, independently created, remotely sensed, habitat map. This procedure revealed that : (1) spatial factors at 10 to 100-m scale explained up to 71% of variability in juvenile species richness, (2) a small improvement (75%) was gained when a combination of environmental variables at different spatial and temporal scales was used and (3) the coupling of remotely sensed data, geographical information system tools and point-based ecological data showed that the highest species richness and abundance were predicted along a narrow margin overlapping the coral reef flat and adjacent seagrass beds. Spatially explicit models of species distribution may be relevant for the management of reef communities when strong relationships exist between faunistic and environmental variables and when models are built at appropriate scales.

  6. Abundance of biting midge species (Diptera: Ceratopogonidae, Culicoides spp.) on cattle farms in Korea

    PubMed Central

    Oem, Jae-Ku; Chung, Joon-Yee; Kwon, Mee-Soon; Kim, Toh-Kyung; Lee, Tae-Uk

    2013-01-01

    Culicoides biting midges were collected on three cattle farms weekly using light traps overnight from May to October between 2010 and 2011 in the southern part of Korea. The seasonal and geographical abundance of Culicodes spp. were measured. A total of 16,538 biting midges were collected from 2010 to 2011, including seven species of Culicoides, four of which represented 98.42% of the collected specimens. These four species were Culicodes (C.) punctatus (n = 14,413), C. arakawae (n = 1,120), C. oxystoma (n = 427), and C. maculatus (n = 318). C. punctatus was the predominant species (87.15%). PMID:23388441

  7. Methanotrophic community abundance and composition in plateau soils with different plant species and plantation ways.

    PubMed

    Dai, Yu; Wu, Zhen; Xie, Shuguang; Liu, Yong

    2015-11-01

    Aerobic methane-oxidizing bacteria (MOB) play an important role in mitigating the methane emission in soil ecosystems to the atmosphere. However, the impact of plant species and plantation ways on the distribution of MOB remains unclear. The present study investigated MOB abundance and structure in plateau soils with different plant species and plantation ways (natural and managed). Soils were collected from unmanaged wild grassland and naturally forested sites, and managed farmland and afforested sites. A large variation in MOB abundance and structure was found in these studied soils. In addition, both type I MOB (Methylocaldum) and type II MOB (Methylocystis) were detected in these soils, while type II MOB usually outnumbered type I MOB. The distribution of soil MOB community was found to be collectively regulated by plantation way, plant species, the altitude of sampling site, and soil properties. PMID:26142389

  8. Tick-borne rickettsial pathogens in questing ticks, removed from humans and animals in Mexico

    PubMed Central

    Vargas-Sandoval, Margarita; Torres, Javier

    2016-01-01

    Tick-borne rickettsial diseases (TBRD) are commonly encountered in medical and veterinary clinical settings. The control of these diseases is difficult, requiring disruption of a complex transmission chain involving a vertebrate host and ticks. The geographical distribution of the diseases is related to distribution of the vector, which is an indicator of risk for the population. A total of 1,107 ticks were collected by tick dragging from forests, ecotourism parks and hosts at 101 sites in 22 of the 32 states of Mexico. Collected ticks were placed in 1.5 mL cryovials containing 70% ethanol and were identified to species. Ticks were pooled according to location/host of collection, date of collection, sex, and stage of development. A total of 51 ticks were assayed by polymerase chain reaction (PCR) to confirm species identification using morphological methods. A total of 477 pools of ticks were assayed using PCR techniques for selected tick-borne pathogens. Anaplasma phagocytophilum was the most commonly detected pathogen (45 pools), followed by, Ehrlichia (E.) canis (42), Rickettsia (R.) rickettsii (11), E. chaffeensis (8), and R. amblyommii (1). Rhipicephalus sanguineus was the tick most frequently positive for selected pathogens. Overall, our results indicate that potential tick vectors positive for rickettsial pathogens are distributed throughout the area surveyed in Mexico. PMID:26726019

  9. Historic Mining and Agriculture as Indicators of Occurrence and Abundance of Widespread Invasive Plant Species

    PubMed Central

    Calinger, Kellen; Calhoon, Elisabeth; Chang, Hsiao-chi; Whitacre, James; Wenzel, John; Comita, Liza; Queenborough, Simon

    2015-01-01

    Anthropogenic disturbances often change ecological communities and provide opportunities for non-native species invasion. Understanding the impacts of disturbances on species invasion is therefore crucial for invasive species management. We used generalized linear mixed effects models to explore the influence of land-use history and distance to roads on the occurrence and abundance of two invasive plant species (Rosa multiflora and Berberis thunbergii) in a 900-ha deciduous forest in the eastern U.S.A., the Powdermill Nature Reserve. Although much of the reserve has been continuously forested since at least 1939, aerial photos revealed a variety of land-uses since then including agriculture, mining, logging, and development. By 2008, both R. multiflora and B. thunbergii were widespread throughout the reserve (occurring in 24% and 13% of 4417 10-m diameter regularly-placed vegetation plots, respectively) with occurrence and abundance of each varying significantly with land-use history. Rosa multiflora was more likely to occur in historically farmed, mined, logged or developed plots than in plots that remained forested, (log odds of 1.8 to 3.0); Berberis thunbergii was more likely to occur in plots with agricultural, mining, or logging history than in plots without disturbance (log odds of 1.4 to 2.1). Mining, logging, and agriculture increased the probability that R. multiflora had >10% cover while only past agriculture was related to cover of B. thunbergii. Proximity to roads was positively correlated with the occurrence of R. multiflora (a 0.26 increase in the log odds for every 1-m closer) but not B. thunbergii, and roads had no impact on the abundance of either species. Our results indicated that a wide variety of disturbances may aid the introduction of invasive species into new habitats, while high-impact disturbances such as agriculture and mining increase the likelihood of high abundance post-introduction. PMID:26046534

  10. Historic Mining and Agriculture as Indicators of Occurrence and Abundance of Widespread Invasive Plant Species.

    PubMed

    Calinger, Kellen; Calhoon, Elisabeth; Chang, Hsiao-Chi; Whitacre, James; Wenzel, John; Comita, Liza; Queenborough, Simon

    2015-01-01

    Anthropogenic disturbances often change ecological communities and provide opportunities for non-native species invasion. Understanding the impacts of disturbances on species invasion is therefore crucial for invasive species management. We used generalized linear mixed effects models to explore the influence of land-use history and distance to roads on the occurrence and abundance of two invasive plant species (Rosa multiflora and Berberis thunbergii) in a 900-ha deciduous forest in the eastern U.S.A., the Powdermill Nature Reserve. Although much of the reserve has been continuously forested since at least 1939, aerial photos revealed a variety of land-uses since then including agriculture, mining, logging, and development. By 2008, both R. multiflora and B. thunbergii were widespread throughout the reserve (occurring in 24% and 13% of 4417 10-m diameter regularly-placed vegetation plots, respectively) with occurrence and abundance of each varying significantly with land-use history. Rosa multiflora was more likely to occur in historically farmed, mined, logged or developed plots than in plots that remained forested, (log odds of 1.8 to 3.0); Berberis thunbergii was more likely to occur in plots with agricultural, mining, or logging history than in plots without disturbance (log odds of 1.4 to 2.1). Mining, logging, and agriculture increased the probability that R. multiflora had >10% cover while only past agriculture was related to cover of B. thunbergii. Proximity to roads was positively correlated with the occurrence of R. multiflora (a 0.26 increase in the log odds for every 1-m closer) but not B. thunbergii, and roads had no impact on the abundance of either species. Our results indicated that a wide variety of disturbances may aid the introduction of invasive species into new habitats, while high-impact disturbances such as agriculture and mining increase the likelihood of high abundance post-introduction. PMID:26046534

  11. Historic Mining and Agriculture as Indicators of Occurrence and Abundance of Widespread Invasive Plant Species.

    PubMed

    Calinger, Kellen; Calhoon, Elisabeth; Chang, Hsiao-Chi; Whitacre, James; Wenzel, John; Comita, Liza; Queenborough, Simon

    2015-01-01

    Anthropogenic disturbances often change ecological communities and provide opportunities for non-native species invasion. Understanding the impacts of disturbances on species invasion is therefore crucial for invasive species management. We used generalized linear mixed effects models to explore the influence of land-use history and distance to roads on the occurrence and abundance of two invasive plant species (Rosa multiflora and Berberis thunbergii) in a 900-ha deciduous forest in the eastern U.S.A., the Powdermill Nature Reserve. Although much of the reserve has been continuously forested since at least 1939, aerial photos revealed a variety of land-uses since then including agriculture, mining, logging, and development. By 2008, both R. multiflora and B. thunbergii were widespread throughout the reserve (occurring in 24% and 13% of 4417 10-m diameter regularly-placed vegetation plots, respectively) with occurrence and abundance of each varying significantly with land-use history. Rosa multiflora was more likely to occur in historically farmed, mined, logged or developed plots than in plots that remained forested, (log odds of 1.8 to 3.0); Berberis thunbergii was more likely to occur in plots with agricultural, mining, or logging history than in plots without disturbance (log odds of 1.4 to 2.1). Mining, logging, and agriculture increased the probability that R. multiflora had >10% cover while only past agriculture was related to cover of B. thunbergii. Proximity to roads was positively correlated with the occurrence of R. multiflora (a 0.26 increase in the log odds for every 1-m closer) but not B. thunbergii, and roads had no impact on the abundance of either species. Our results indicated that a wide variety of disturbances may aid the introduction of invasive species into new habitats, while high-impact disturbances such as agriculture and mining increase the likelihood of high abundance post-introduction.

  12. Annual cycle of zooplankton abundance and species composition in Izmit Bay (the northeastern Marmara Sea)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Isinibilir, Melek; Kideys, Ahmet E.; Tarkan, Ahmet N.; Yilmaz, I. Noyan

    2008-07-01

    The monthly abundance, biomass and taxonomic composition of zooplankton of Izmit Bay (the northeastern Marmara Sea) were studied from October 2001 to September 2002. Most species within the zooplankton community displayed a clear pattern of succession throughout the year. Generally copepods and cladocerans were the most abundant groups, while the contribution of meroplankton increased at inner-most stations and dominated the zooplankton. Both species number ( S) and diversity ( H') were positively influenced by the increase in salinity of upper layers ( r = 0.30 and r = 0.31, p < 0.001, respectively), while chlorophyll a was negatively affected ( r = -0.36, p < 0.001). Even though Noctiluca scintillans had a significant seasonality ( F11,120 = 8.45, p < 0.001, ANOVA), abundance was not related to fluctuations in temperature and only chlorophyll a was adversely correlated ( r = -0.35, p < 0.001). In general, there are some minor differences in zooplankton assemblages of upper and lower layers. A comparison of the species composition and abundance of Izmit Bay with other Black Sea bays reveals a high similarity between them.

  13. Species richness and relative species abundance of Nymphalidae (Lepidoptera) in three forests with different perturbations in the North-Central Caribbean of Costa Rica.

    PubMed

    Stephen, Carolyn; Sánchez, Ragde

    2014-09-01

    Measurements of species richness and species abundance can have important implications for regulations and conservation. This study investigated species richness and abundance of butterflies in the family Nymphalidae at undisturbed, and disturbed habitats in Tirimbina Biological Reserve and Nogal Private Reserve, Sarapiquí, Costa Rica. Traps baited with rotten banana were placed in the canopy and the understory of three habitats: within mature forest, at a river/forest border, and at a banana plantation/forest border. In total, 71 species and 487 individuals were caught and identified during May and June 2011 and May 2013. Species richness and species abundance were found to increase significantly at perturbed habitats (p < 0.0001, p < 0.0001, respectively). The edge effect, in which species richness and abundance increase due to greater complementary resources from different habitats, could be one possible explanation for increased species richness and abundance. PMID:25412524

  14. Tick capillary feeding for the study of proteins involved in tick-pathogen interactions as potential antigens for the control of tick infestation and pathogen infection

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background Ticks represent a significant health risk to animals and humans due to the variety of pathogens they can transmit during feeding. The traditional use of chemicals to control ticks has serious drawbacks, including the selection of acaricide-resistant ticks and environmental contamination with chemical residues. Vaccination with the tick midgut antigen BM86 was shown to be a good alternative for cattle tick control. However, results vary considerably between tick species and geographic location. Therefore, new antigens are required for the development of vaccines controlling both tick infestations and pathogen infection/transmission. Tick proteins involved in tick-pathogen interactions may provide good candidate protective antigens for these vaccines, but appropriate screening procedures are needed to select the best candidates. Methods In this study, we selected proteins involved in tick-Anaplasma (Subolesin and SILK) and tick-Babesia (TROSPA) interactions and used in vitro capillary feeding to characterize their potential as antigens for the control of cattle tick infestations and infection with Anaplasma marginale and Babesia bigemina. Purified rabbit polyclonal antibodies were generated against recombinant SUB, SILK and TROSPA and added to uninfected or infected bovine blood to capillary-feed female Rhipicephalus (Boophilus) microplus ticks. Tick weight, oviposition and pathogen DNA levels were determined in treated and control ticks. Results The specificity of purified rabbit polyclonal antibodies against tick recombinant proteins was confirmed by Western blot and against native proteins in tick cell lines and tick tissues using immunofluorescence. Capillary-fed ticks ingested antibodies added to the blood meal and the effect of these antibodies on tick weight and oviposition was shown. However, no effect was observed on pathogen DNA levels. Conclusions These results highlighted the advantages and some of the disadvantages of in vitro tick capillary

  15. Altitudinal and seasonal differences of tick communities in dogs from pastoralist tribes of Northern Kenya.

    PubMed

    D'Amico, Gianluca; Dumitrache, Mirabela O; Široký, Pavel; Albrechtová, Kateřina; Sloboda, Michal; Domşa, Cristian; Sándor, Attila D; Balázsi, Robert; Kanyari, Paul W N; Modrý, David; Mihalca, Andrei D

    2015-09-15

    Studies regarding the distribution and ecology of ticks in dogs from Eastern Africa are scarce. Our research was based on a long-term screening of ticks parasitising the domestic dogs living with indigenous people around Lake Turkana, Mt. Kulal and Mt. Nyiru areas, Northern Kenya. A total of 9977 ticks were collected from 1464 dogs of all ages and both sexes. Identification was performed using morphological keys and data were analyzed using the Repeated Measures ANOVA, post-hoc Scheffe test and F test, relating independent variables as seasons and regions. Final results were translated to maps using GIS software. Five species of ticks were identified: Rhipicephalus pulchellus, Rhipicephalus sanguineus sensu lato (s.l.), Rhipicephalus armatus, Amblyomma gemma and Hyalomma truncatum. Our results suggest a statistical difference of the tick community structure related to seasonal and altitudinal distribution. Parasitism with R. armatus and R. pulchellus was higher in September-October than in January, whereas, R. sanguineus s.l. was not influenced by the season. Rhipicephalus armatus was present exclusively on dogs living in semi-desert areas, while R. sanguineus s.l. was the dominant species present on the shores of Lake Turkana. Although R. pulchellus was present in the all studied areas, this species had a significantly higher abundance in the afromontane region of Mt. Kulal and montane xeromorphic forest of Mt. Nyiru; these regions are characterized by elevated humidity and cooler climate. Similar geo-climatic distribution is typical also for A. gemma, which was found in dogs exclusively in Mt. Kulal afromontane area. The current work represents the most extensive study performed on the tick community structure of dogs in Eastern Africa. The results showed a relatively limited tick species diversity, with clear seasonal differences and altitudinal distribution.

  16. Prevalence of severe fever with thrombocytopenia syndrome virus in Haemaphysalis longicornis ticks in South Korea.

    PubMed

    Park, Sun-Whan; Song, Bong Gu; Shin, E-Hyun; Yun, Seok-Min; Han, Myung-Guk; Park, Mi Yeoun; Park, Chan; Ryou, Jungsang

    2014-10-01

    Haemaphysalis longicornis a vector that harbors severe fever with thrombocytopenia syndrome virus (SFTSV) is a major species of tick in South Korea. To investigate the existence and prevalence of SFTSV in Korea, we collected ticks from nine provinces in South Korea for detecting SFTSV. In all, we collected 13,053 ticks, and H. longicornis (90.8%, 11,856/13,053) was the most abundant among them. The minimum infection rate (MIR) of SFTSV in H. longicornis was 0.46% (55 pools). SFTSV was detected in ticks during all the developmental stages, showing MIR in larvae (2/350, 0.57%), nymphs (38/10,436, 0.36%), males (2/221, 0.90%), and females (13/849, 1.53%), respectively. Viruses were detected in ticks collected between April and September. A higher MIR was detected in ticks from the southern part of the country. We amplified the M and S segment partial genes from a sample and analyzed the nucleotide sequence. The results showed a 93-98% homology to Chinese and Japanese strains registered in Genbank. In this study, we confirmed the existence of SFTSV for the first time in South Korea. The SFTSV prevalence data from the studies are essential for raising the awareness of SFTS in South Korea.

  17. Molecular detection of tick-borne pathogens in Ixodes ricinus from Moldova collected in 1960.

    PubMed

    Movila, Alexandru; Toderas, Ion; Uspenskaia, Inga; Conovalov, Jurii

    2013-06-01

    This study is the first report about the prevalence of tick-borne pathogens, as well as their (co-)infection rates, in the museum-archived I. ricinus female ticks collected in Moldova in 1960. A total of 16.7% (21/126) ticks was mono-infected. Borrelia burgdorferi sensu stricto was revealed as the most abundant species (4.8%) followed by B. garinii (1.6%), B. afzelii (0.8%), B. valaisiana (0.8%), and B. lusitaniae (0.8%). DNA of Rickettsia helvetica (2.4%), R. monacensis (2.4%), Anaplasma phagocytophilum (2.4%), 'Candidatus Neoehrlichia mikurensis' (0.8%), and Babesia microti (0.8%) were also detected, indicating the occurrence of these emerging tick-borne microorganisms in Moldova since 1960 at least. In this study, we detected a co-infection (0.8%; 1/126 tested ticks) between B. microti and R. helvetica. Additional investigations are warranted to further characterize a historical snapshot of the distribution of tick-borne pathogens in Europe.

  18. Diel rhythms of tick parasitism on incubating African penguins.

    PubMed

    Duffy, D C; Daturi, A

    1987-01-01

    1. Ticks (Ornithodoros capensis Neumann) were most abundant on incubating host African penguins (Spheniscus demersus Linnaeus) at 24.00 hours and least abundant during 09.00-12.00 hours during 4 day periods in May and October at 3 h intervals. 2. Ticks were three times as abundant in May, the start of the breeding season, as in October, at its end. 3. Air temperature and humidity appear less important than light levels in determining tick activity. 4. The degree of tick parasitism of breeding seabirds is best studied at night.

  19. Tick paralysis

    MedlinePlus

    ... away. Breathing difficulties require emergency care. Prevention Use insect repellents and protective clothing when in tick-infested areas. ... chap 298. Read More Botulism Guillain-Barré syndrome Insect bites and stings Movement - uncoordinated Muscle function loss Poisoning - fish and ...

  20. Rich and rare—First insights into species diversity and abundance of Antarctic abyssal Gastropoda (Mollusca)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schwabe, Enrico; Michael Bohn, Jens; Engl, Winfried; Linse, Katrin; Schrödl, Michael

    2007-08-01

    , and all these 84 species seem endemic to Antarctica south of the Polar Front. Comparing diversity and abundances based on epibenthic sledge samples, there is no clear relationship between Antarctic deep-sea gastropod abundance and species richness with depth. However, both Antarctic and adjacent deep-sea areas are still far from being adequately sampled to allow more comprehensive conclusions.

  1. Species Abundance Distribution of Ectoparasites on Norway Rats (Rattus norvegicus) from a Localized Area in Southwest China

    PubMed Central

    Guo, Xian Guo; Dong, Wen Ge; Men, Xing Yuan; Qian, Ti Jun; Wu, Dian; Ren, Tian Guang; Qin, Feng; Song, Wen Yu; Yang, Zhi Hua; Fletcher, Quinn E

    2016-01-01

    Background: The species of ectoparasites that live on a specific host in a geographical region form an ectoparasite community. Species abundance distributions describe the number of individuals observed for each different species that is encountered within a community. Based on properties of the species abundance distribution, the expected total number of species present in the community can be estimated. Methods: Preston’s lognormal distribution model was used to fit the expected species abundance distribution curve. Using the expected species abundance distribution curve, we estimated the total number of expected parasite species present and the amount of species that were likely missed by our sampling in the field. Results: In total, 8040 ectoparasites (fleas, sucking lice, gamasid mites and chigger mites) were collected from 431 Norway rats (Rattus norvegicus) from a localized area in southwest China. These ectoparasites were identified to be 47 species from 26 genera in 10 families. The majority of ectoparasite species were chigger mites (family Trombiculidae) while the majority of individuals were sucking lice in the family Polyplacidae. The expected species abundance distribution curve demonstrated the classic pattern that the majority of ectoparasite species were rare and that there were a few common species. The total expected number of ectoparasite species on R. norvegicus was estimated to be 85 species, and 38 species were likely missed by our sampling in the field. Conclusions: Norway rats harbor a large suite of ectoparasites. Future field investigations should sample large numbers of host individuals to assess ectoparasite populations. PMID:27308277

  2. Effect of trophic status in lakes on fungal species diversity and abundance.

    PubMed

    Pietryczuk, A; Cudowski, A; Hauschild, T

    2014-11-01

    The objective of this study was to determine the species diversity and abundance of fungi in relation to the hydrochemical conditions, with special emphasis on the trophic status and degree of pollution of lakes. The study was conducted in 14 lakes of the Augustów Lakeland (central Europe, NE Poland) with different hydrological conditions, type of stratification and trophic status. The analyses were performed in the hydrological year 2013. In the waters of the studied lakes, the mean abundance of fungi was 5600±3600 CFU/mL. The minimum value (800 CFU/mL) was recorded for the mesotrophic Płaskie Lake, and the maximum value (14,000 CFU/mL) was recorded for the eutrophic Pobojno Lake. A total of 38 species of fungi were identified, including 11 belonging to the aquatic hyphomycetes; up to 14 species were potentially pathogenic fungi. The potentially pathogenic fungi, particularly Candida albicans and Scopulariopsis fusca, were found in lakes with increased concentrations of chloride and sulphate(VI) ions and may thus serve as indicators of the degree of water pollution. This paper illustrates that the species diversity and abundance of fungi in limnic waters depend on the concentration of organic matter, chlorophyll a concentration, and the degree of water pollution. The results suggest that aquatic fungi can be a valuable indicator of the degree of pollution and the sanitary quality of the water. PMID:25145569

  3. Niche and neutral models predict asymptotically equivalent species abundance distributions in high-diversity ecological communities

    PubMed Central

    Chisholm, Ryan A.; Pacala, Stephen W.

    2010-01-01

    A fundamental challenge in ecology is to understand the mechanisms that govern patterns of relative species abundance. Previous numerical simulations have suggested that complex niche-structured models produce species abundance distributions (SADs) that are qualitatively similar to those of very simple neutral models that ignore differences between species. However, in the absence of an analytical treatment of niche models, one cannot tell whether the two classes of model produce the same patterns via similar or different mechanisms. We present an analytical proof that, in the limit as diversity becomes large, a strong niche model give rises to exactly the same asymptotic form of SAD as the neutral model, and we verify the analytical predictions for a Panamanian tropical forest data set. Our results strongly suggest that neutral processes drive patterns of relative species abundance in high-diversity ecological communities, even when strong niche structure exists. However, neutral theory cannot explain what generates high diversity in the first place, and it may not be valid in low-diversity communities. Our results also confirm that neutral theory cannot be used to infer an absence of niche structure or to explain ecosystem function. PMID:20733073

  4. Culicoides monitoring in Belgium in 2011: analysis of spatiotemporal abundance, species diversity and Schmallenberg virus detection.

    PubMed

    DE Regge, N; DE Deken, R; Fassotte, C; Losson, B; Deblauwe, I; Madder, M; Vantieghem, P; Tomme, M; Smeets, F; Cay, A B

    2015-09-01

    In 2011, Culicoides (Diptera: Ceratopogonidae) were collected at 16 locations covering four regions of Belgium with Onderstepoort Veterinary Institute (OVI) traps and at two locations with Rothamsted suction traps (RSTs). Quantification of the collections and morphological identification showed important variations in abundance and species diversity between individual collection sites, even for sites located in the same region. However, consistently higher numbers of Culicoides midges were collected at some sites compared with others. When species abundance and diversity were analysed at regional level, between-site variation disappeared. Overall, species belonging to the subgenus Avaritia together with Culicoides pulicaris (subgenus Culicoides) were the most abundant, accounting for 80% and 96% of all midges collected with RSTs and OVI traps, respectively. Culicoides were present during most of the year, with Culicoides obsoletus complex midges found from 9 February until 27 December. Real-time reverse-transcription polymerase chain reaction screening for Schmallenberg virus in the heads of collected midges resulted in the first detection of the virus in August 2011 and identified C. obsoletus complex, Culicoides chiopterus and Culicoides dewulfi midges as putative vector species. At Libramont in the south of Belgium, no positive pools were identified. PMID:25761054

  5. Differential effects of cocaine exposure on the abundance of phospholipid species in rat brain and blood*

    PubMed Central

    Cummings, Brian S.; Pati, Sumitra; Sahin, Serap; Scholpa, Natalie E.; Monian, Prashant; Trinquero, Paul O.; Clark, Jason K.; Wagner, John J.

    2015-01-01

    Background Lipid profiles in the blood are altered in human cocaine users, suggesting that cocaine-exposure can induce lipid remodeling. Methods Cocaine-induced locomotor sensitization in rats was followed by shotgun lipidomics using electrospray ionization-mass spectrometry (ESI-MS) and determined changes in brain tissues. To determine if any lipidomic changes were also reflected in the blood, we performed principal component analysis (PCA) of lipidomic spectra isolated from cocaine-treated animals. Alterations in the abundance of phospholipid species were correlated with behavioral changes in the magnitude of either the initial response to drug or locomotor sensitization. Results Behavioral sensitization altered the relative abundance of several phospholipid species in the hippocampus and cerebellum, measured one week following the final exposure to cocaine. In contrast, relatively few effects on phospholipids in either the dorsal or the ventral striatum were observed. PCA analysis demonstrated that cocaine altered the relative abundance of several glycerophospholipid species as compared to saline-injected controls. Subsequent MS/MS analysis identified some of these lipids as phosphatidylethanolamines, phosphatidylserines and phosphatidylcholines. The relative abundance of some of these phospholipid species were well correlated (R2 of 0.7 or higher) with either the initial response to cocaine or locomotor sensitization. Conclusion Taken together, these data demonstrate that a cocaine-conditioning experience results in the remodeling of specific phospholipids in rat brain tissue in a region-specific manner and also alters the intensities and types of phospholipid species in rat blood. These results further suggest that such changes may serve as biomarkers to assess the neuroadaptations occurring following repeated exposure to cocaine. PMID:25960140

  6. Estimating species – area relationships by modeling abundance and frequency subject to incomplete sampling

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Yamaura, Yuichi; Connor, Edward F.; Royle, Andy; Itoh, Katsuo; Sato, Kiyoshi; Taki, Hisatomo; Mishima, Yoshio

    2016-01-01

    Models and data used to describe species–area relationships confound sampling with ecological process as they fail to acknowledge that estimates of species richness arise due to sampling. This compromises our ability to make ecological inferences from and about species–area relationships. We develop and illustrate hierarchical community models of abundance and frequency to estimate species richness. The models we propose separate sampling from ecological processes by explicitly accounting for the fact that sampled patches are seldom completely covered by sampling plots and that individuals present in the sampling plots are imperfectly detected. We propose a multispecies abundance model in which community assembly is treated as the summation of an ensemble of species-level Poisson processes and estimate patch-level species richness as a derived parameter. We use sampling process models appropriate for specific survey methods. We propose a multispecies frequency model that treats the number of plots in which a species occurs as a binomial process. We illustrate these models using data collected in surveys of early-successional bird species and plants in young forest plantation patches. Results indicate that only mature forest plant species deviated from the constant density hypothesis, but the null model suggested that the deviations were too small to alter the form of species–area relationships. Nevertheless, results from simulations clearly show that the aggregate pattern of individual species density–area relationships and occurrence probability–area relationships can alter the form of species–area relationships. The plant community model estimated that only half of the species present in the regional species pool were encountered during the survey. The modeling framework we propose explicitly accounts for sampling processes so that ecological processes can be examined free of sampling artefacts. Our modeling approach is extensible and could be applied

  7. Abundance, species composition of microzooplankton from the coastal waters of Port Blair, South Andaman Island

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    Background Microzooplankton consisting of protists and metazoa <200 μm. It displays unique feeding mechanisms and behaviours that allow them to graze cells up to five times their own volume. They can grow at rates which equal or exceed prey growth and can serve as a viable food source for metazoans. Moreover, they are individually inconspicuous, their recognition as significant consumers of oceanic primary production. The microzooplankton can be the dominant consumers of phytoplankton production in both oligo- and eutrophic regions of the ocean and are capable of consuming >100% of primary production. Results The microzooplankton of the South Andaman Sea were investigated during September 2011 to January 2012. A total of 44 species belong to 19 genera were recorded in this study. Tintinnids made larger contribution to the total abundance (34%) followed in order by dinoflagellates (24%), ciliates (20%) and copepod nauplii (18%). Foraminifera were numerically less (4%). Tintinnids were represented by 20 species belong to 13 genera, Heterotrophic dinoflagellates were represented by 17 species belong to 3 genera and Ciliates comprised 5 species belong to 3 genera. Eutintinus tineus, Tintinnopsis cylindrical, T. incertum, Protoperidinium divergens, Lomaniella oviformes, Strombidium minimum were the most prevalent microzooplankton. Standing stock of tintinnids ranged from 30–80 cells.L-1 and showed a reverse distribution with the distribution of chlorophyll a relatively higher species diversity and equitability was found in polluted harbour areas. Conclusions The change of environmental variability affects the species composition and abundance of microzooplankton varied spatially and temporarily. The observations clearly demonstrated that the harbor area differed considerably from other area in terms of species present and phytoplankton biomass. Further, the phytoplankton abundance is showed to be strongly influenced by tintinnid with respect to the relationship of

  8. Abundance and phenology patterns of two pond-breeding salamanders determine species interactions in natural populations.

    PubMed

    Anderson, Thomas L; Hocking, Daniel J; Conner, Christopher A; Earl, Julia E; Harper, Elizabeth B; Osbourn, Michael S; Peterman, William E; Rittenhouse, Tracy A G; Semlitsch, Raymond D

    2015-03-01

    Phenology often determines the outcome of interspecific interactions, where early-arriving species often dominate interactions over those arriving later. The effects of phenology on species interactions are especially pronounced in aquatic systems, but the evidence is largely derived from experimental studies. We examined whether differences in breeding phenology between two pond-breeding salamanders (Ambystoma annulatum and A. maculatum) affected metamorph recruitment and demographic traits within natural populations, with the expectation that the fall-breeding A. annulatum would negatively affect the spring-breeding A. maculatum. We monitored populations of each species at five ponds over 4 years using drift fences. Metamorph abundance and survival of A. annulatum were affected by intra- and interspecific processes, whereas metamorph size and date of emigration were primarily influenced by intraspecific effects. Metamorph abundance, snout-vent length, date of emigration and survival for A. maculatum were all predicted by combinations of intra- and interspecific effects, but often showed negative relationships with A. annulatum metamorph traits and abundance. Size and date of metamorphosis were strongly correlated within each species, but in opposite patterns (negative for A. annulatum and positive for A. maculatum), suggesting that the two species use alternative strategies to enhance terrestrial survival and that these factors may influence their interactions. Our results match predictions from experimental studies that suggest recruitment is influenced by intra- and interspecific processes which are determined by phenological differences between species. Incorporating spatiotemporal variability when modeling population dynamics is necessary to understand the importance of phenology in species interactions, especially as shifts in phenology occur under climate change.

  9. Abundance and phenology patterns of two pond-breeding salamanders determine species interactions in natural populations.

    PubMed

    Anderson, Thomas L; Hocking, Daniel J; Conner, Christopher A; Earl, Julia E; Harper, Elizabeth B; Osbourn, Michael S; Peterman, William E; Rittenhouse, Tracy A G; Semlitsch, Raymond D

    2015-03-01

    Phenology often determines the outcome of interspecific interactions, where early-arriving species often dominate interactions over those arriving later. The effects of phenology on species interactions are especially pronounced in aquatic systems, but the evidence is largely derived from experimental studies. We examined whether differences in breeding phenology between two pond-breeding salamanders (Ambystoma annulatum and A. maculatum) affected metamorph recruitment and demographic traits within natural populations, with the expectation that the fall-breeding A. annulatum would negatively affect the spring-breeding A. maculatum. We monitored populations of each species at five ponds over 4 years using drift fences. Metamorph abundance and survival of A. annulatum were affected by intra- and interspecific processes, whereas metamorph size and date of emigration were primarily influenced by intraspecific effects. Metamorph abundance, snout-vent length, date of emigration and survival for A. maculatum were all predicted by combinations of intra- and interspecific effects, but often showed negative relationships with A. annulatum metamorph traits and abundance. Size and date of metamorphosis were strongly correlated within each species, but in opposite patterns (negative for A. annulatum and positive for A. maculatum), suggesting that the two species use alternative strategies to enhance terrestrial survival and that these factors may influence their interactions. Our results match predictions from experimental studies that suggest recruitment is influenced by intra- and interspecific processes which are determined by phenological differences between species. Incorporating spatiotemporal variability when modeling population dynamics is necessary to understand the importance of phenology in species interactions, especially as shifts in phenology occur under climate change. PMID:25413866

  10. Research on the ecology of ticks and tick-borne pathogens—methodological principles and caveats

    PubMed Central

    Estrada-Peña, Agustín; Gray, Jeremy S.; Kahl, Olaf; Lane, Robert S.; Nijhof, Ard M.

    2013-01-01

    Interest in tick-transmitted pathogens has experienced an upsurge in the past few decades. Routine application of tools for the detection of fragments of foreign DNA in ticks, together with a high degree of interest in the quantification of disease risk for humans, has led to a marked increase in the number of reports on the eco-epidemiology of tick-borne diseases. However, procedural errors continue to accumulate in the scientific literature, resulting in misleading information. For example, unreliable identification of ticks and pathogens, erroneous interpretations of short-term field studies, and the hasty acceptance of some tick species as vectors have led to ambiguities regarding the vector role of these arthropods. In this review, we focus on the ecological features driving the life cycle of ticks and the resulting effects on the eco-epidemiology of tick-transmitted pathogens. We review the factors affecting field collections of ticks, and we describe the biologically and ecologically appropriate procedures for describing tick host-seeking activity and its correlation with environmental traits. We detail the climatic variables that have biological importance on ticks and explain how they should be properly measured and analyzed. We also provide evidence to critically reject the use of some environmental traits that are being increasingly reported as the drivers of the behavior of ticks. With the aim of standardization, we propose unambiguous definitions of the status of hosts and ticks regarding their ability to maintain and spread a given pathogen. We also describe laboratory procedures and standards for evaluating the vectorial capacity of a tick or the reservoir role of a host. This approach should provide a coherent framework for the reporting of research findings concerning ticks and tick-borne diseases. PMID:23964348

  11. Tick Bites, First Aid

    MedlinePlus

    ... rashes clinical tools newsletter | contact Share | Tick Bites, First Aid A A A It is important to inspect ... temporary paralysis in their host (called tick paralysis). First Aid Guide To remove an embedded tick: Wash your ...

  12. The control of rank-abundance distributions by a competitive despotic species.

    PubMed

    Mac Nally, Ralph; McAlpine, Clive A; Possingham, Hugh P; Maron, Martine

    2014-11-01

    Accounting for differences in abundances among species remains a high priority for community ecology. While there has been more than 80 years of work on trying to explain the characteristic S shape of rank-abundance distributions (RADs), there has been recent conjecture that the form may not depend on ecological processes per se but may be a general phenomenon arising in many unrelated disciplines. We show that the RAD shape can be influenced by an ecological process, namely, interference competition. The noisy miner (Manorina melanocephala) is a hyperaggressive, 'despotic' bird that occurs over much of eastern Australia (>10(6) km(2)). We compiled data for bird communities from 350 locations within its range, which were collected using standard avian survey methods. We used hierarchical Bayesian models to show that the RAD shape was much altered when the abundance of the strong interactor exceeded a threshold density; RADs consistently were steeper when the density of the noisy miner ≥2.5 birds ha(-1). The structure of bird communities at sites where the noisy miner exceeded this density was very different from that at sites where the densities fell below the threshold: species richness and Shannon diversity were much reduced, but mean abundances and mean avian biomass per site did not differ substantially. PMID:25185775

  13. Estimating forest species abundance through linear unmixing of CHRIS/PROBA imagery

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stagakis, Stavros; Vanikiotis, Theofilos; Sykioti, Olga

    2016-09-01

    The advancing technology of hyperspectral remote sensing offers the opportunity of accurate land cover characterization of complex natural environments. In this study, a linear spectral unmixing algorithm that incorporates a novel hierarchical Bayesian approach (BI-ICE) was applied on two spatially and temporally adjacent CHRIS/PROBA images over a forest in North Pindos National Park (Epirus, Greece). The scope is to investigate the potential of this algorithm to discriminate two different forest species (i.e. beech - Fagus sylvatica, pine - Pinus nigra) and produce accurate species-specific abundance maps. The unmixing results were evaluated in uniformly distributed plots across the test site using measured fractions of each species derived by very high resolution aerial orthophotos. Landsat-8 images were also used to produce a conventional discrete-type classification map of the test site. This map was used to define the exact borders of the test site and compare the thematic information of the two mapping approaches (discrete vs abundance mapping). The required ground truth information, regarding training and validation of the applied mapping methodologies, was collected during a field campaign across the study site. Abundance estimates reached very good overall accuracy (R2 = 0.98, RMSE = 0.06). The most significant source of error in our results was due to the shadowing effects that were very intense in some areas of the test site due to the low solar elevation during CHRIS acquisitions. It is also demonstrated that the two mapping approaches are in accordance across pure and dense forest areas, but the conventional classification map fails to describe the natural spatial gradients of each species and the actual species mixture across the test site. Overall, the BI-ICE algorithm presented increased potential to unmix challenging objects with high spectral similarity, such as different vegetation species, under real and not optimum acquisition conditions. Its

  14. Ticks associated with domestic dogs and cats in Florida, USA

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Voluntary collections of ticks from domestic dogs and cats by veterinary practitioners across Florida were conducted over a 10 month period. Of the 1,337 ticks submitted, five species of ixodid ticks were identified and included Rhipicephalus sanguineus, Amblyomma americanum, A. maculatum, Dermacen...

  15. Widespread Rickettsia spp. Infections in Ticks (Acari: Ixodoidea) in Taiwan.

    PubMed

    Kuo, Chi-Chien; Shu, Pei-Yun; Mu, Jung-Jung; Lee, Pei-Lung; Wu, Yin-Wen; Chung, Chien-Kung; Wang, Hsi-Chieh

    2015-09-01

    Ticks are second to mosquitoes as the most important disease vectors, and recent decades have witnessed the emergence of many novel tick-borne rickettsial diseases, but systematic surveys of ticks and tick-borne rickettsioses are generally lacking in Asia. We collected and identified ticks from small mammal hosts between 2006 and 2010 in different parts of Taiwan. Rickettsia spp. infections in ticks were identified by targeting ompB and gltA genes with nested polymerase chain reaction. In total, 2,732 ticks were collected from 1,356 small mammals. Rhipicephalus haemaphysaloides Supino (51.8% of total ticks), Haemaphysalis bandicota Hoogstraal & Kohls (28.0%), and Ixodes granulatus Supino (20.0%) were the most common tick species, and Rattus losea Swinhoe (44.7% of total ticks) and Bandicota indica Bechstein (39.9%) were the primary hosts. The average Rickettsia infective rate in 329 assayed ticks was 31.9% and eight Rickettsia spp. or closely related species were identified. This study shows that rickettsiae-infected ticks are widespread in Taiwan, with a high diversity of Rickettsia spp. circulating in the ticks. Because notifiable rickettsial diseases in Taiwan only include mite-borne scrub typhus and flea-borne murine typhus, more studies are warranted for a better understanding of the real extent of human risks to rickettsioses in Taiwan.

  16. The fish fauna of Anambra river basin, Nigeria: species abundance and morphometry.

    PubMed

    Odo, Gregory Ejikeme; Didigwu, Nwani Christopher; Eyo, Joseph Effiong

    2009-01-01

    The fish yields of most Nigeria inland waters are generally on the decline for causes that may range from inadequate management of the fisheries to degradation of the water bodies. Sustainable exploitation requires knowledge of the ichthyofaunal composition in the water bodies. We did a survey of fish species in Anambra river basin for 22 months. Fish samples were collected using four different gears -hook and line of size 13, caste nets, gill nets, and cages of mesh sizes of 50 mm, 75 mm, and 100 mm each. We recorded 52 fish species belonging to 17 families: 171, 236, and 169 individuals at Ogurugu, Otuocha, and Nsugbe stations respectively. Two families, Characidae, 19.5%, and Mochokidae, 11.8%, constituted the dominant fish families in the river. The dominant fish species were Citherinus citherius, 9.02%, and Alestes nurse, 7.1%. Other fish species with significant abundance were Synodontis clarias 6.9%, Macrolepidotus curvier 5.7%, Labeo coubie 5.4%, Distichodus rostrtus 4.9%, and Schilbe mystus 4.5%. The meristic features of the two most abundant fish species caught are as follows: Citharinus citharius dorsal fins 20, anal fins 30, caudal fins 21, pectoral fins, 9 and 8 ventral fins, and Alestes nurse 10 dorsal fins, 14 anal fins, 31 caudal fins, 7 pectoral fins and 6 ventral fins. The morphometric features of the two most abundant fish species are Citharinus citharius total length 300 mm, standard length 231 mm, head length 69 mm, body length 101 mm, body girth 176 mm, body weight 900 mg. Alestes nurse total length 200, standard length 140 mm, head length 60 mm, body length 80 mm, body girth 120 mm, body weight 400 mg. The most abundant animal utilizing the basin was Ardea cinerea (D3) with 22.2% occurrence (D4) and this was followed by Caprini with 13.51%, and Varanus niloticus, 10.04%. The least abundant animals utilizing basin were Chephalophus rufilatus, and Erythrocebus patas, with 0.58% each of occurrence. PMID:19637699

  17. Plankton studies in San Francisco Bay; II, Phytoplankton abundance and species composition, July 1977-December 1979

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Wong, Raymond L. J.; Cloern, James E.

    1981-01-01

    Data are presented on the phytoplankton species composition and abundance in San Francisco Bay from July 1977 through December 1979. Phytoplankton identification and enumerations were made at selected stations. Sample collections were made at selected stations in the main channel of the Bay from Rio Vista on the Sacramento River to Calaveras Point in South San Francisco Bay, and at shoal stations in the central portion of South San Francisco Bay, San Pablo Bay, and Suisun Bay. Also reported, from October 1978 through December 1979, are the calculated phytoplankton carbon and percent nondiatom carbon, and the species list. This study is one component of an ongoing interdisciplinary study of San Francisco Bay. (USGS)

  18. Are the Most Plastic Species the Most Abundant Ones? An Assessment Using a Fish Assemblage

    PubMed Central

    Vidal, Nicolás; Zaldúa, Natalia; D'Anatro, Alejandro; Naya, Daniel E.

    2014-01-01

    Few studies have evaluated phenotypic plasticity at the community level, considering, for example, plastic responses in an entire species assemblage. In addition, none of these studies have addressed the relationship between phenotypic plasticity and community structure. Within this context, here we assessed the magnitude of seasonal changes in digestive traits (seasonal flexibility), and of changes during short-term fasting (flexibility during fasting), occurring in an entire fish assemblage, comprising ten species, four trophic levels, and a 37-fold range in body mass. In addition, we analyzed the relationship between estimates of digestive flexibility and three basic assemblage structure attributes, i.e., species trophic position, body size, and relative abundance. We found that: (1) Seasonal digestive flexibility was not related with species trophic position or with body size; (2) Digestive flexibility during fasting tended to be inversely correlated with body size, as expected from scaling relationships; (3) Digestive flexibility, both seasonal and during fasting, was positively correlated with species relative abundance. In conclusion, the present study identified two trends in digestive flexibility in relation to assemblage structure, which represents an encouraging departure point in the search of general patterns in phenotypic plasticity at the local community scale. PMID:24651865

  19. Relative density of host-seeking ticks in different habitat types of south-western Slovakia.

    PubMed

    Kazimírová, Mária; Hamšíková, Zuzana; Kocianová, Elena; Marini, Giovanni; Mojšová, Michala; Mahríková, Lenka; Berthová, Lenka; Slovák, Mirko; Rosá, Roberto

    2016-06-01

    Ixodes ricinus is a vector of microbial pathogens of medical and veterinary importance in Europe. Recently, increasing abundance of ticks has been observed in urban and suburban areas. The aim of this study was to investigate the tick species composition and examine correlations between local environmental variables and the relative density of host-seeking I. ricinus in two habitat types. Questing ticks were collected along six 100 m(2) transects in urban/suburban locations of Bratislava town, and in a non-fragmented deciduous forest in the Small Carpathians Mountains (south-western Slovakia) during 2011-2013. In total, 6015 I. ricinus were collected (3435 and 2580 in the urban/suburban and natural habitat, respectively), out of which over 80 % were nymphs. Haemaphysalis concinna comprised 1.3 % of the tick collections. Peak I. ricinus nymph and adult host-seeking activities were registered in April-June. Spatial and temporal variation in tick relative density and differences in the subadult/adult ratio were observed between habitats and between locations within the same habitat type. The relative density of questing I. ricinus nymphs correlated negatively with altitude, geographical aspect and saturation deficit in a 64-day period comprising the 8-day period including the date of tick sampling and previous 56 days. No significant correlation was found between roe deer density and questing nymph density. The study revealed the presence of abundant I. ricinus populations in green areas of Bratislava, suggesting a risk of exposure of town dwellers and domestic and companion animals to potentially infected ticks.

  20. Driving forces for changes in geographical distribution of Ixodes ricinus ticks in Europe

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Many factors are involved in determining the latitudinal and altitudinal spread of the important tick vector Ixodes ricinus (Acari: Ixodidae) in Europe, as well as in changes in the distribution within its prior endemic zones. This paper builds on published literature and unpublished expert opinion from the VBORNET network with the aim of reviewing the evidence for these changes in Europe and discusses the many climatic, ecological, landscape and anthropogenic drivers. These can be divided into those directly related to climatic change, contributing to an expansion in the tick’s geographic range at extremes of altitude in central Europe, and at extremes of latitude in Scandinavia; those related to changes in the distribution of tick hosts, particularly roe deer and other cervids; other ecological changes such as habitat connectivity and changes in land management; and finally, anthropogenically induced changes. These factors are strongly interlinked and often not well quantified. Although a change in climate plays an important role in certain geographic regions, for much of Europe it is non-climatic factors that are becoming increasingly important. How we manage habitats on a landscape scale, and the changes in the distribution and abundance of tick hosts are important considerations during our assessment and management of the public health risks associated with ticks and tick-borne disease issues in 21st century Europe. Better understanding and mapping of the spread of I. ricinus (and changes in its abundance) is, however, essential to assess the risk of the spread of infections transmitted by this vector species. Enhanced tick surveillance with harmonized approaches for comparison of data enabling the follow-up of trends at EU level will improve the messages on risk related to tick-borne diseases to policy makers, other stake holders and to the general public. PMID:23281838

  1. Relative density of host-seeking ticks in different habitat types of south-western Slovakia.

    PubMed

    Kazimírová, Mária; Hamšíková, Zuzana; Kocianová, Elena; Marini, Giovanni; Mojšová, Michala; Mahríková, Lenka; Berthová, Lenka; Slovák, Mirko; Rosá, Roberto

    2016-06-01

    Ixodes ricinus is a vector of microbial pathogens of medical and veterinary importance in Europe. Recently, increasing abundance of ticks has been observed in urban and suburban areas. The aim of this study was to investigate the tick species composition and examine correlations between local environmental variables and the relative density of host-seeking I. ricinus in two habitat types. Questing ticks were collected along six 100 m(2) transects in urban/suburban locations of Bratislava town, and in a non-fragmented deciduous forest in the Small Carpathians Mountains (south-western Slovakia) during 2011-2013. In total, 6015 I. ricinus were collected (3435 and 2580 in the urban/suburban and natural habitat, respectively), out of which over 80 % were nymphs. Haemaphysalis concinna comprised 1.3 % of the tick collections. Peak I. ricinus nymph and adult host-seeking activities were registered in April-June. Spatial and temporal variation in tick relative density and differences in the subadult/adult ratio were observed between habitats and between locations within the same habitat type. The relative density of questing I. ricinus nymphs correlated negatively with altitude, geographical aspect and saturation deficit in a 64-day period comprising the 8-day period including the date of tick sampling and previous 56 days. No significant correlation was found between roe deer density and questing nymph density. The study revealed the presence of abundant I. ricinus populations in green areas of Bratislava, suggesting a risk of exposure of town dwellers and domestic and companion animals to potentially infected ticks. PMID:26926874

  2. Sampling designs matching species biology produce accurate and affordable abundance indices

    PubMed Central

    Farley, Sean; Russell, Gareth J.; Butler, Matthew J.; Selinger, Jeff

    2013-01-01

    Wildlife biologists often use grid-based designs to sample animals and generate abundance estimates. Although sampling in grids is theoretically sound, in application, the method can be logistically difficult and expensive when sampling elusive species inhabiting extensive areas. These factors make it challenging to sample animals and meet the statistical assumption of all individuals having an equal probability of capture. Violating this assumption biases results. Does an alternative exist? Perhaps by sampling only where resources attract animals (i.e., targeted sampling), it would provide accurate abundance estimates more efficiently and affordably. However, biases from this approach would also arise if individuals have an unequal probability of capture, especially if some failed to visit the sampling area. Since most biological programs are resource limited, and acquiring abundance data drives many conservation and management applications, it becomes imperative to identify economical and informative sampling designs. Therefore, we evaluated abundance estimates generated from grid and targeted sampling designs using simulations based on geographic positioning system (GPS) data from 42 Alaskan brown bears (Ursus arctos). Migratory salmon drew brown bears from the wider landscape, concentrating them at anadromous streams. This provided a scenario for testing the targeted approach. Grid and targeted sampling varied by trap amount, location (traps placed randomly, systematically or by expert opinion), and traps stationary or moved between capture sessions. We began by identifying when to sample, and if bears had equal probability of capture. We compared abundance estimates against seven criteria: bias, precision, accuracy, effort, plus encounter rates, and probabilities of capture and recapture. One grid (49 km2 cells) and one targeted configuration provided the most accurate results. Both placed traps by expert opinion and moved traps between capture sessions, which

  3. Sampling designs matching species biology produce accurate and affordable abundance indices.

    PubMed

    Harris, Grant; Farley, Sean; Russell, Gareth J; Butler, Matthew J; Selinger, Jeff

    2013-01-01

    Wildlife biologists often use grid-based designs to sample animals and generate abundance estimates. Although sampling in grids is theoretically sound, in application, the method can be logistically difficult and expensive when sampling elusive species inhabiting extensive areas. These factors make it challenging to sample animals and meet the statistical assumption of all individuals having an equal probability of capture. Violating this assumption biases results. Does an alternative exist? Perhaps by sampling only where resources attract animals (i.e., targeted sampling), it would provide accurate abundance estimates more efficiently and affordably. However, biases from this approach would also arise if individuals have an unequal probability of capture, especially if some failed to visit the sampling area. Since most biological programs are resource limited, and acquiring abundance data drives many conservation and management applications, it becomes imperative to identify economical and informative sampling designs. Therefore, we evaluated abundance estimates generated from grid and targeted sampling designs using simulations based on geographic positioning system (GPS) data from 42 Alaskan brown bears (Ursus arctos). Migratory salmon drew brown bears from the wider landscape, concentrating them at anadromous streams. This provided a scenario for testing the targeted approach. Grid and targeted sampling varied by trap amount, location (traps placed randomly, systematically or by expert opinion), and traps stationary or moved between capture sessions. We began by identifying when to sample, and if bears had equal probability of capture. We compared abundance estimates against seven criteria: bias, precision, accuracy, effort, plus encounter rates, and probabilities of capture and recapture. One grid (49 km(2) cells) and one targeted configuration provided the most accurate results. Both placed traps by expert opinion and moved traps between capture sessions

  4. Predicting probability of occurrence and factors affecting distribution and abundance of three Ozark endemic crayfish species at multiple spatial scales

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Nolen, Matthew S.; Magoulick, Daniel D.; DiStefano, Robert J.; Imhoff, Emily M.; Wagner, Brian K.

    2014-01-01

    We found that a range of environmental variables were important in predicting crayfish distribution and abundance at multiple spatial scales and their importance was species-, response variable- and scale dependent. We would encourage others to examine the influence of spatial scale on species distribution and abundance patterns.

  5. Shifts in Campylobacter species abundance may reflect general microbial community shifts in periodontitis progression

    PubMed Central

    Henne, Karsten; Fuchs, Felix; Kruth, Sebastian; Horz, Hans-Peter; Conrads, Georg

    2014-01-01

    Background Oral Campylobacter species have been found to be associated with periodontitis progression. While the etiological significance of Campylobacter rectus is quite established, the association of C. gracilis, C. concisus, and C. curvus with health or disease remains contradictory. Objectives This study hypothesizes that the proportion of species within the Campylobacter genus rather than the absolute abundance of a single species is a suitable indicator for periodontitis progression. Design Subgingival plaque from 90 periodontitis patients and gingival sulcus fluid of 32 healthy individuals were subjected to a newly developed nested PCR approach, in which all Campylobacter spp. were amplified simultaneously. The resulting mixture of 16S-rRNA-gene-amplicons were separated by single-stranded conformation polymorphism (SSCP) gel electrophoresis, followed by sequencing and identification of excised bands and relative quantification of band intensities. In all samples, the abundance of selected periodontitis marker species was determined based on DNA hybridization on a microarray. Results The highly prevalent Campylobacter community was composed of varying proportions of C. rectus, C. gracilis, C. concisus, and C. curvus. Cluster analysis based on SSCP-banding pattern resulted in distinct groups which in turn coincided with significant differences in abundance of established periodontitis marker species (Tannerella forsythia, Porphyromonas gingivalis, and Fusobacterium nucleatum) and progression. Conclusions The shift in the Campylobacter community composition seems to display the general microbial community shift during clinical progression in a simplified manner. The focus on members of the Campylobacter in this study suggests that this genus can be an indicator of ecological changes in the subgingival oral microflora. PMID:25412608

  6. Species abundance and diversity of Burkholderia cepacia complex in the environment.

    PubMed

    Ramette, Alban; LiPuma, John J; Tiedje, James M

    2005-03-01

    Despite considerable interest in studying Burkholderia cepacia complex in the environment, we still do not have efficient methods to detect, isolate, and screen large numbers of B. cepacia isolates. To better describe the ecology and diversity of B. cepacia complex, a colony hybridization assay was developed to detect specifically all species of the complex based on polymorphism of the variable V3 region of the 16S rRNA sequence. The sensitivity of the assay was dramatically enhanced by using a probe consisting of three repeats of a B. cepacia complex-specific probe, each separated by a phosphoramidite spacer. In addition, a duplex PCR targeting B. cepacia complex-specific recA and 16S rRNA sequences was developed to enable a fast and reliable diagnostic assay for members of the complex. When applied to maize rhizosphere samples, colony hybridization results were in good agreement with those of most-probable-number duplex PCR, both indicating a >100-fold fluctuation of abundance between individual plants. Using restriction analysis of recA for a total of 285 confirmed isolates of the B. cepacia complex, up to seven B. cepacia complex species were identified; however, their diversity and abundance were not evenly distributed among individual plants, and several allelic variants were commonly found from the same rhizosphere sample. These results indicate that not only complex communities of B. cepacia complex species and closely related strains of the same species may coexist at high population levels but also species composition and abundance may dramatically vary between individual plants. PMID:15746318

  7. Tick-borne rickettsial pathogens in questing ticks, removed from humans and animals in Mexico.

    PubMed

    Sosa-Gutierrez, Carolina G; Vargas-Sandoval, Margarita; Torres, Javier; Gordillo-Pérez, Guadalupe

    2016-09-30

    Tick-borne rickettsial diseases (TBRD) are commonly encountered in medical and veterinary clinical settings. The control of these diseases is difficult, requiring disruption of a complex transmission chain involving a vertebrate host and ticks. The geographical distribution of the diseases is related to distribution of the vector, which is an indicator of risk for the population. A total of 1107 were collected by tick drag from forests, ecotourism parks and hosts at 101 sites in 22 of the 32 states of Mexico. Collected ticks were placed in 1.5 mL cryovials containing 70% ethanol and were identified to species. Ticks were pooled according to location/host of collection, date of collection, sex, and stage of development. A total of 51 ticks were assayed by polymerase chain reaction (PCR) to confirm species identification using morphological methods. A total of 477 pools of ticks were assayed using PCR techniques for selected tick-borne pathogens. Anaplasma phagocytophilum was the most commonly detected pathogen (45 pools), followed by, Ehrlichia (E.) canis (42), Rickettsia (R.) rickettsii (11), E. chaffeensis (8), and R. amblyommii (1). Rhipicephalus sanguineus was the tick most frequently positive for selected pathogens. Overall, our results indicate that potential tick vectors positive for rickettsial pathogens are distributed throughout the area surveyed in Mexico.

  8. Tick-borne rickettsial pathogens in questing ticks, removed from humans and animals in Mexico.

    PubMed

    Sosa-Gutierrez, Carolina G; Vargas-Sandoval, Margarita; Torres, Javier; Gordillo-Pérez, Guadalupe

    2016-09-30

    Tick-borne rickettsial diseases (TBRD) are commonly encountered in medical and veterinary clinical settings. The control of these diseases is difficult, requiring disruption of a complex transmission chain involving a vertebrate host and ticks. The geographical distribution of the diseases is related to distribution of the vector, which is an indicator of risk for the population. A total of 1107 were collected by tick drag from forests, ecotourism parks and hosts at 101 sites in 22 of the 32 states of Mexico. Collected ticks were placed in 1.5 mL cryovials containing 70% ethanol and were identified to species. Ticks were pooled according to location/host of collection, date of collection, sex, and stage of development. A total of 51 ticks were assayed by polymerase chain reaction (PCR) to confirm species identification using morphological methods. A total of 477 pools of ticks were assayed using PCR techniques for selected tick-borne pathogens. Anaplasma phagocytophilum was the most commonly detected pathogen (45 pools), followed by, Ehrlichia (E.) canis (42), Rickettsia (R.) rickettsii (11), E. chaffeensis (8), and R. amblyommii (1). Rhipicephalus sanguineus was the tick most frequently positive for selected pathogens. Overall, our results indicate that potential tick vectors positive for rickettsial pathogens are distributed throughout the area surveyed in Mexico. PMID:26726019

  9. Diatom species abundance and morphologically-based dissolution proxies in coastal Southern Ocean assemblages

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Warnock, Jonathan P.; Scherer, Reed P.

    2015-07-01

    Taphonomic processes alter diatom assemblages in sediments, thus potentially negatively impacting paleoclimate records at various rates across space, time, and taxa. However, quantitative taphonomic data is rarely included in diatom-based paleoenvironmental reconstructions and no objective standard exists for comparing diatom dissolution in sediments recovered from marine depositional settings, including the Southern Ocean's opal belt. Furthermore, identifying changes to diatom dissolution through time can provide insight into the efficiency of both upper water column nutrient recycling and the biological pump. This is significant in that reactive metal proxies (e.g. Al, Ti) in the sediments only account for post-depositional dissolution, not the water column where the majority of dissolution occurs. In order to assess the range of variability of responses to dissolution in a typical Southern Ocean diatom community and provide a quantitative guideline for assessing taphonomic variability in diatoms recovered from core material, a sediment trap sample was subjected to controlled, serial dissolution. By evaluating dissolution-induced changes to diatom species' relative abundance, three preservational categories of diatoms have been identified: gracile, intermediate, and robust. The relative abundances of these categories can be used to establish a preservation grade for diatom assemblages. However, changes to the relative abundances of diatom species in sediment samples may reflect taphonomic or ecological factors. In order to address this complication, relative abundance changes have been tied to dissolution-induced morphological change to the areolae of Fragilariopsis curta, a significant sea-ice indicator in Southern Ocean sediments. This correlation allows differentiation between gracile species loss to dissolution versus ecological factors or sediment winnowing. These results mirror a similar morphological dissolution index from a parallel study utilizing

  10. [Variations of fish species diversity, faunal assemblage, and abundances in Daya Bay in 1980-2007].

    PubMed

    Wang, Xue-hui; Du, Fi-yan; Qiu, Yong-song; Li, Chun-hou; Sun, Dian-rong; Jia, Xiao-ping

    2010-09-01

    Based on the 2004-2005 otter trawl survey data and the 1980-2007 relevant historical records, this paper analyzed the variations of fish species composition, faunal assemblage, diversity indices, dominant species, and abundance in Daya Bay. In the 2004-2005 trawl survey, a total of 107 fish species were recorded, belonging to 50 families and 13 orders, among which, meso-demersal fish were predominant, with 48 species recorded, and followed by pelagic and demersal fishes, with 37 and 21 species, respectively. The fishes in the Bay belonged to tropical and subtropical fauna, with the dominance of warm water fishes (97 species) and warm-temperate water fishes (10 species). The diversity index was the highest in summer (3.82), followed by in winter (3.37) and autumn (3.00), and the lowest in spring (2.40). The seasonal variation of Pielou evenness index mimicked that of diversity index. In 1980-2007, the characteristics of fish community in the Bay changed obviously. The species number reduced from 157 species in the 1980s to 110 species in the 1990s and to 107 species in 2004-2005, and the dominant species shifted from the high-value fishes such as hairtail and pomfret in the 1980s to low-value fishes such as sardine fish, anchovy, and juvenile porgy. A non-linear regression model composed of inter-annual trend and seasonal cycle was used to simulate the changes of fish stock density in 1980-1999 and 1990-2007, and the results indicated that in the two periods, the fish stock density in the Bay all showed a decreasing trend, but the decrement was larger in 1990-2007 than in 1980-1999. The seasonal variation of the stock density in 1980-1999 was relatively small, with an amplitude being 0.099, while that in 1990-2007 was relatively larger, with the amplitude being 0.420, illustrating that the fish abundance in the Bay had a larger seasonal fluctuation in 1990-2007.

  11. Epidemic disease decimates amphibian abundance, species diversity, and evolutionary history in the highlands of central Panama.

    PubMed

    Crawford, Andrew J; Lips, Karen R; Bermingham, Eldredge

    2010-08-01

    Amphibian populations around the world are experiencing unprecedented declines attributed to a chytrid fungal pathogen, Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis. Despite the severity of the crisis, quantitative analyses of the effects of the epidemic on amphibian abundance and diversity have been unavailable as a result of the lack of equivalent data collected before and following disease outbreak. We present a community-level assessment combining long-term field surveys and DNA barcode data describing changes in abundance and evolutionary diversity within the amphibian community of El Copé, Panama, following a disease epidemic and mass-mortality event. The epidemic reduced taxonomic, lineage, and phylogenetic diversity similarly. We discovered that 30 species were lost, including five undescribed species, representing 41% of total amphibian lineage diversity in El Copé. These extirpations represented 33% of the evolutionary history of amphibians within the community, and variation in the degree of population loss and decline among species was random with respect to the community phylogeny. Our approach provides a fast, economical, and informative analysis of loss in a community whether measured by species or phylogenetic diversity.

  12. Understanding Long-Term Changes in Species Abundance Using a Niche-Based Approach

    PubMed Central

    Helaouët, Pierre; Beaugrand, Grégory; Edwards, Martin

    2013-01-01

    One of the major challenges to understanding population changes in ecology for assessment purposes is the difficulty in evaluating the suitability of an area for a given species. Here we used a new simple approach able to faithfully predict through time the abundance of two key zooplanktonic species by focusing on the relationship between the species’ environmental preferences and their observed abundances. The approach is applied to the marine copepods Calanus finmarchicus and C. helgolandicus as a case study characterising the multidecadal dynamics of the North Sea ecosystem. We removed all North Sea data from the Continuous Plankton Recorder (CPR) dataset and described for both species a simplified ecological niche using Sea Surface Temperature (SST) and CPR Phytoplankton Colour Index (PCI). We then modelled the dynamics of each species by associating the North Sea’s environmental parameters to the species’ ecological niches, thus creating a method to assess the suitability of this area. By using both C. finmarchicus and C. helgolandicus as indicators, the procedure reproduces the documented switches from cold to warm temperate states observed in the North Sea. PMID:24265757

  13. Relative abundance and species richness of cerambycid beetles in partial cut and uncut bottomland hardwood forests

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Newell, P.; King, S.

    2009-01-01

    Partial cutting techniques are increasingly advocated and used to create habitat for priority wildlife. However, partial cutting may or may not benefit species dependent on deadwood; harvesting can supplement coarse woody debris in the form of logging slash, but standing dead trees may be targeted for removal. We sampled cerambycid beetles during the spring and summer of 2006 and 2007 with canopy malaise traps in 1- and 2-year-old partial cut and uncut bottomland hardwood forests of Louisiana. We captured a total of 4195 cerambycid beetles representing 65 species. Relative abundance was higher in recent partial cuts than in uncut controls and with more dead trees in a plot. Total species richness and species composition were not different between treatments. The results suggest partial cuts with logging slash left on site increase the abundance of cerambycid beetles in the first few years after partial cutting and that both partial cuts and uncut forest should be included in the bottomland hardwood forest landscape.

  14. Variation in Population Synchrony in a Multi-Species Seabird Community: Response to Changes in Predator Abundance.

    PubMed

    Robertson, Gail S; Bolton, Mark; Morrison, Paul; Monaghan, Pat

    2015-01-01

    Ecologically similar sympatric species, subject to typical environmental conditions, may be expected to exhibit synchronous temporal fluctuations in demographic parameters, while populations of dissimilar species might be expected to show less synchrony. Previous studies have tested for synchrony in different populations of single species, and those including data from more than one species have compared fluctuations in only one demographic parameter. We tested for synchrony in inter-annual changes in breeding population abundance and productivity among four tern species on Coquet Island, northeast England. We also examined how manipulation of one independent environmental variable (predator abundance) influenced temporal changes in ecologically similar and dissimilar tern species. Changes in breeding abundance and productivity of ecologically similar species (Arctic Sterna paradisaea, Common S. hirundo and Roseate Terns S. dougallii) were synchronous with one another over time, but not with a species with different foraging and breeding behaviour (Sandwich Terns Thalasseus sandvicensis). With respect to changes in predator abundance, there was no clear pattern. Roseate Tern abundance was negatively correlated with that of large gulls breeding on the island from 1975 to 2013, while Common Tern abundance was positively correlated with number of large gulls, and no significant correlations were found between large gull and Arctic and Sandwich Tern populations. Large gull abundance was negatively correlated with productivity of Arctic and Common Terns two years later, possibly due to predation risk after fledging, while no correlation with Roseate Tern productivity was found. The varying effect of predator abundance is most likely due to specific differences in the behaviour and ecology of even these closely-related species. Examining synchrony in multi-species assemblages improves our understanding of how whole communities react to long-term changes in the

  15. Variation in Population Synchrony in a Multi-Species Seabird Community: Response to Changes in Predator Abundance

    PubMed Central

    Robertson, Gail S.; Bolton, Mark; Morrison, Paul; Monaghan, Pat

    2015-01-01

    Ecologically similar sympatric species, subject to typical environmental conditions, may be expected to exhibit synchronous temporal fluctuations in demographic parameters, while populations of dissimilar species might be expected to show less synchrony. Previous studies have tested for synchrony in different populations of single species, and those including data from more than one species have compared fluctuations in only one demographic parameter. We tested for synchrony in inter-annual changes in breeding population abundance and productivity among four tern species on Coquet Island, northeast England. We also examined how manipulation of one independent environmental variable (predator abundance) influenced temporal changes in ecologically similar and dissimilar tern species. Changes in breeding abundance and productivity of ecologically similar species (Arctic Sterna paradisaea, Common S. hirundo and Roseate Terns S. dougallii) were synchronous with one another over time, but not with a species with different foraging and breeding behaviour (Sandwich Terns Thalasseus sandvicensis). With respect to changes in predator abundance, there was no clear pattern. Roseate Tern abundance was negatively correlated with that of large gulls breeding on the island from 1975 to 2013, while Common Tern abundance was positively correlated with number of large gulls, and no significant correlations were found between large gull and Arctic and Sandwich Tern populations. Large gull abundance was negatively correlated with productivity of Arctic and Common Terns two years later, possibly due to predation risk after fledging, while no correlation with Roseate Tern productivity was found. The varying effect of predator abundance is most likely due to specific differences in the behaviour and ecology of even these closely-related species. Examining synchrony in multi-species assemblages improves our understanding of how whole communities react to long-term changes in the

  16. Bacterial colonization and extinction on marine aggregates: stochastic model of species presence and abundance

    PubMed Central

    Kramer, Andrew M; Lyons, M Maille; Dobbs, Fred C; Drake, John M

    2013-01-01

    Organic aggregates provide a favorable habitat for aquatic microbes, are efficiently filtered by shellfish, and may play a major role in the dynamics of aquatic pathogens. Quantifying this role requires understanding how pathogen abundance in the water and aggregate size interact to determine the presence and abundance of pathogen cells on individual aggregates. We build upon current understanding of the dynamics of bacteria and bacterial grazers on aggregates to develop a model for the dynamics of a bacterial pathogen species. The model accounts for the importance of stochasticity and the balance between colonization and extinction. Simulation results suggest that while colonization increases linearly with background density and aggregate size, extinction rates are expected to be nonlinear on small aggregates in a low background density of the pathogen. Under these conditions, we predict lower probabilities of pathogen presence and reduced abundance on aggregates compared with predictions based solely on colonization. These results suggest that the importance of aggregates to the dynamics of aquatic bacterial pathogens may be dependent on the interaction between aggregate size and background pathogen density, and that these interactions are strongly influenced by ecological interactions and pathogen traits. The model provides testable predictions and can be a useful tool for exploring how species-specific differences in pathogen traits may alter the effect of aggregates on disease transmission. PMID:24340173

  17. Abundance and Spatial Dispersion of Rice Stem Borer Species in Kahama, Tanzania

    PubMed Central

    Leonard, Alfonce; Rwegasira, Gration M.

    2015-01-01

    Species diversity, abundance, and dispersion of rice stem borers in framer’s fields were studied in four major rice growing areas of Kahama District. Stem borer larvae were extracted from the damaged tillers in 16 quadrants established in each field. Adult Moths were trapped by light traps and collected in vials for identification. Results indicated the presence of Chilo partellus, Maliarpha separatella, and Sesamia calamistis in all study areas. The most abundant species was C. partellus (48.6%) followed by M. separatella (35.4%) and S. calamistis was least abundant (16.1%). Stem borers dispersion was aggregated along the edges of rice fields in three locations (wards) namely: Bulige, Chela, and Ngaya. The dispersion in the fourth ward, Kashishi was uniform as established from two of the three dispersion indices tested. Further studies would be required to establish the available alternative hosts, the extent of economic losses and the distribution of rice stem borers in the rest of the Lake zone of Tanzania. PMID:26411785

  18. Abundance and Spatial Dispersion of Rice Stem Borer Species in Kahama, Tanzania.

    PubMed

    Leonard, Alfonce; Rwegasira, Gration M

    2015-01-01

    Species diversity, abundance, and dispersion of rice stem borers in framer's fields were studied in four major rice growing areas of Kahama District. Stem borer larvae were extracted from the damaged tillers in 16 quadrants established in each field. Adult Moths were trapped by light traps and collected in vials for identification. Results indicated the presence of Chilo partellus, Maliarpha separatella, and Sesamia calamistis in all study areas. The most abundant species was C. partellus (48.6%) followed by M. separatella (35.4%) and S. calamistis was least abundant (16.1%). Stem borers dispersion was aggregated along the edges of rice fields in three locations (wards) namely: Bulige, Chela, and Ngaya. The dispersion in the fourth ward, Kashishi was uniform as established from two of the three dispersion indices tested. Further studies would be required to establish the available alternative hosts, the extent of economic losses and the distribution of rice stem borers in the rest of the Lake zone of Tanzania. PMID:26411785

  19. The dynamics of questing ticks collected for 164 consecutive months off the vegetation of two landscape zones in the Kruger National Park (1988-2002). Part III. The less commonly collected species.

    PubMed

    Gallivan, Gordon J; Spickett, Andrea; Heyne, Heloise; Spickett, Arthur M; Horak, Ivan G

    2011-04-19

    Despite many studies regarding tick ecology, limited information on long-term changes in tick populations exist. This study assessed the long-term population dynamics of the less frequently collected questing ixodid ticks in the Kruger National Park (KNP). From 1988 to 2002, monthly dragging of the vegetation was performed in three habitats (grassland, woodland and gully) at two sites in the KNP (Nhlowa Road, Landscape Zone 17, and Skukuza, Landscape Zone 4). Amblyomma marmoreum and Rhipicephalus evertsi evertsi were collected as larvae most commonly. Most A. marmoreum larvae were collected at Skukuza and numbers peaked from March to July. More R. evertsi evertsi larvae were collected at Nhlowa Road and numbers peaked in summer and in winter, while at Skukuza there was a single peak in spring. Haemaphysalis elliptica, Rhipicephalus simus and Rhipicephalus turanicus were collected as adults most commonly. More Ha. elliptica and R. turanicus were collected at Nhlowa Road than at Skukuza, while R. simus numbers from the two sites were approximately equal. Ha. elliptica were collected most often between February and June, and R. simus and R. turanicus during February and March. All three species were collected more frequently in gullies than in grassland or woodland. Their numbers increased in 1994/1995 following an eruption of rodents, the preferred hosts of the immature stages. The different host-seeking strategies of ticks largely determine the development stage at which they are likely to be collected during vegetation dragging and reflect a complex interaction between ticks, their hosts and the environment.

  20. Depletion of Abundant Sequences by Hybridization (DASH): using Cas9 to remove unwanted high-abundance species in sequencing libraries and molecular counting applications.

    PubMed

    Gu, W; Crawford, E D; O'Donovan, B D; Wilson, M R; Chow, E D; Retallack, H; DeRisi, J L

    2016-03-04

    Next-generation sequencing has generated a need for a broadly applicable method to remove unwanted high-abundance species prior to sequencing. We introduce DASH (Depletion of Abundant Sequences by Hybridization). Sequencing libraries are 'DASHed' with recombinant Cas9 protein complexed with a library of guide RNAs targeting unwanted species for cleavage, thus preventing them from consuming sequencing space. We demonstrate a more than 99 % reduction of mitochondrial rRNA in HeLa cells, and enrichment of pathogen sequences in patient samples. We also demonstrate an application of DASH in cancer. This simple method can be adapted for any sample type and increases sequencing yield without additional cost.

  1. Depletion of Abundant Sequences by Hybridization (DASH): using Cas9 to remove unwanted high-abundance species in sequencing libraries and molecular counting applications.

    PubMed

    Gu, W; Crawford, E D; O'Donovan, B D; Wilson, M R; Chow, E D; Retallack, H; DeRisi, J L

    2016-01-01

    Next-generation sequencing has generated a need for a broadly applicable method to remove unwanted high-abundance species prior to sequencing. We introduce DASH (Depletion of Abundant Sequences by Hybridization). Sequencing libraries are 'DASHed' with recombinant Cas9 protein complexed with a library of guide RNAs targeting unwanted species for cleavage, thus preventing them from consuming sequencing space. We demonstrate a more than 99 % reduction of mitochondrial rRNA in HeLa cells, and enrichment of pathogen sequences in patient samples. We also demonstrate an application of DASH in cancer. This simple method can be adapted for any sample type and increases sequencing yield without additional cost. PMID:26944702

  2. Parametric scaling from species relative abundances to absolute abundances in the computation of biological diversity: a first proposal using Shannon's entropy.

    PubMed

    Ricotta, Carlo

    2003-01-01

    Traditional diversity measures such as the Shannon entropy are generally computed from the species' relative abundance vector of a given community to the exclusion of species' absolute abundances. In this paper, I first mention some examples where the total information content associated with a given community may be more adequate than Shannon's average information content for a better understanding of ecosystem functioning. Next, I propose a parametric measure of statistical information that contains both Shannon's entropy and total information content as special cases of this more general function.

  3. Infestation of urban populations of the Northern white-breasted hedgehog, Erinaceus roumanicus, by Ixodes spp. ticks in Poland.

    PubMed

    Dziemian, S; Michalik, J; Pi Łacińska, B; Bialik, S; Sikora, B; Zwolak, R

    2014-12-01

    Infestation by the nest-dwelling Ixodes hexagonus Leach and the exophilic Ixodes ricinus (Linnaeus) (Ixodida: Ixodidae) on the Northern white-breasted hedgehog, Erinaceus roumanicus (Erinaceomorpha: Erinaceidae), was investigated during a 4-year study in residential areas of the city of Poznań, west-central Poland. Of 341 hedgehogs, 303 (88.9%) hosted 10 061 Ixodes spp. ticks encompassing all parasitic life stages (larvae, nymphs, females). Ixodes hexagonus accounted for 73% and I. ricinus for 27% of the collected ticks. Male hedgehogs carried significantly higher tick burdens than females. Analyses of seasonal prevalence and abundance of I. hexagonus revealed relatively stable levels of infestation of all parasitic stages, with a modest summer peak in tick abundance noted only on male hosts. By contrast, I. ricinus females and nymphs peaked in spring and declined steadily thereafter in summer and autumn, whereas the less abundant larvae peaked in summer. This is the first longterm study to evaluate the seasonal dynamics of both tick species on populations of wild hedgehogs inhabiting urban residential areas.

  4. The Human Release Hypothesis for biological invasions: human activity as a determinant of the abundance of invasive plant species.

    PubMed

    Zimmermann, Heike; Brandt, Patric; Fischer, Joern; Welk, Erik; von Wehrden, Henrik

    2014-01-01

    Research on biological invasions has increased rapidly over the past 30 years, generating numerous explanations of how species become invasive. While the mechanisms of invasive species establishment are well studied, the mechanisms driving abundance patterns (i.e. patterns of population density and population size) remain poorly understood. It is assumed that invasive species typically have higher abundances in their new environments than in their native ranges, and patterns of invasive species abundance differ between invaded regions. To explain differences in invasive species abundance, we propose the Human Release Hypothesis. In parallel to the established Enemy Release Hypothesis, this hypothesis states that the differences in abundance of invasive species are found between regions because population expansion is reduced in some regions through continuous land management and associated cutting of the invasive species. The Human Release Hypothesis does not negate other important drivers of species invasions, but rather should be considered as a potentially important complementary mechanism. We illustrate the hypothesis via a case study on an invasive rose species, and hypothesize which locations globally may be most likely to support high abundances of invasive species. We propose that more extensive empirical work on the Human Release Hypothesis could be useful to test its general applicability.

  5. The Human Release Hypothesis for biological invasions: human activity as a determinant of the abundance of invasive plant species.

    PubMed

    Zimmermann, Heike; Brandt, Patric; Fischer, Joern; Welk, Erik; von Wehrden, Henrik

    2014-01-01

    Research on biological invasions has increased rapidly over the past 30 years, generating numerous explanations of how species become invasive. While the mechanisms of invasive species establishment are well studied, the mechanisms driving abundance patterns (i.e. patterns of population density and population size) remain poorly understood. It is assumed that invasive species typically have higher abundances in their new environments than in their native ranges, and patterns of invasive species abundance differ between invaded regions. To explain differences in invasive species abundance, we propose the Human Release Hypothesis. In parallel to the established Enemy Release Hypothesis, this hypothesis states that the differences in abundance of invasive species are found between regions because population expansion is reduced in some regions through continuous land management and associated cutting of the invasive species. The Human Release Hypothesis does not negate other important drivers of species invasions, but rather should be considered as a potentially important complementary mechanism. We illustrate the hypothesis via a case study on an invasive rose species, and hypothesize which locations globally may be most likely to support high abundances of invasive species. We propose that more extensive empirical work on the Human Release Hypothesis could be useful to test its general applicability. PMID:25352979

  6. The Human Release Hypothesis for biological invasions: human activity as a determinant of the abundance of invasive plant species

    PubMed Central

    Zimmermann, Heike; Brandt, Patric; Fischer, Joern; Welk, Erik; von Wehrden, Henrik

    2014-01-01

    Research on biological invasions has increased rapidly over the past 30 years, generating numerous explanations of how species become invasive. While the mechanisms of invasive species establishment are well studied, the mechanisms driving abundance patterns (i.e. patterns of population density and population size) remain poorly understood. It is assumed that invasive species typically have higher abundances in their new environments than in their native ranges, and patterns of invasive species abundance differ between invaded regions. To explain differences in invasive species abundance, we propose the Human Release Hypothesis. In parallel to the established Enemy Release Hypothesis, this hypothesis states that the differences in abundance of invasive species are found between regions because population expansion is reduced in some regions through continuous land management and associated cutting of the invasive species. The Human Release Hypothesis does not negate other important drivers of species invasions, but rather should be considered as a potentially important complementary mechanism. We illustrate the hypothesis via a case study on an invasive rose species, and hypothesize which locations globally may be most likely to support high abundances of invasive species. We propose that more extensive empirical work on the Human Release Hypothesis could be useful to test its general applicability. PMID:25352979

  7. Integration of non-indigenous species within the interspecific abundance-occupancy relationship

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rigal, François; Whittaker, Robert J.; Triantis, Kostas A.; Borges, Paulo A. V.

    2013-04-01

    There is a broad consensus that habitat disturbance and introduction of non-indigenous species may dramatically modify community structure, particularly in insular ecosystems. However, it is less clear whether emergent macroecological patterns are similarly affected. The positive interspecific abundance-occupancy relationship (IAOR) is one of the most pervasive macroecological patterns, yet has rarely been analyzed for oceanic island assemblages. We use an extensive dataset for arthropods from six islands within the Azorean archipelago to test: (1) whether indigenous and non-indigenous species are distributed differently within the IAOR; and (2) to the extent that they are, can differences can be attributed to two indices of disturbance. We implemented modeling averaged methods using five of the most common IAOR models to derive an averaged IAOR fit for each island. After testing if species colonization status (indigenous versus non-indigenous) may explain the residuals of the IAOR, we identified true negative and positive outliers and tested the effect of colonization status on the likelihood of a species being a positive or negative outlier. We found that the indigenous and non-indigenous species are randomly distributed on both sides of the overall IAOR. Only for Flores Island, were non-indigenous species more aggregated than indigenous species. We were unable to detect a meaningful relationship between deviation from the IAOR and disturbance, despite the undoubted impact of both severe habitat loss and non-indigenous species on these oceanic islands. Our results show that the non-indigenous species have been integrated alongside indigenous species in the contemporary Azorean arthropod communities such that they are mostly undetectable by the study of the IAOR.

  8. Vaccinomics Approach to Tick Vaccine Development.

    PubMed

    Contreras, Marinela; Villar, Margarita; Alberdi, Pilar; de la Fuente, José

    2016-01-01

    Ticks are blood-feeding arthropod ectoparasites that transmit disease-causing pathogens to humans and animals worldwide. Vaccines using tick antigens have proven to be cost-effective and environmental friendly for the control of vector infestations and pathogen infection and transmission. However, new strategies are needed to identify tick protective antigens for development of improved vaccines. These strategies will be greatly enhanced by vaccinomics approaches starting from the study of tick-host-pathogen molecular interactions and ending in the characterization and validation of vaccine formulations. The discovery of tick antigens that affect both tick infestations and pathogen infection/transmission could be used for vaccines targeting human and animal populations at risk and reservoir species to reduce host exposure to ticks while reducing the number of infected ticks and their vector capacity for pathogens that affect human and animal health. In this chapter, we describe methods of the vaccinomics platform using transcriptomics and proteomics for the identification of candidate protective antigens in Ixodes scapularis, the vector for human and animal granulocytic anaplasmosis, tick-borne encephalitis, and Lyme disease.

  9. Vaccinomics Approach to Tick Vaccine Development.

    PubMed

    Contreras, Marinela; Villar, Margarita; Alberdi, Pilar; de la Fuente, José

    2016-01-01

    Ticks are blood-feeding arthropod ectoparasites that transmit disease-causing pathogens to humans and animals worldwide. Vaccines using tick antigens have proven to be cost-effective and environmental friendly for the control of vector infestations and pathogen infection and transmission. However, new strategies are needed to identify tick protective antigens for development of improved vaccines. These strategies will be greatly enhanced by vaccinomics approaches starting from the study of tick-host-pathogen molecular interactions and ending in the characterization and validation of vaccine formulations. The discovery of tick antigens that affect both tick infestations and pathogen infection/transmission could be used for vaccines targeting human and animal populations at risk and reservoir species to reduce host exposure to ticks while reducing the number of infected ticks and their vector capacity for pathogens that affect human and animal health. In this chapter, we describe methods of the vaccinomics platform using transcriptomics and proteomics for the identification of candidate protective antigens in Ixodes scapularis, the vector for human and animal granulocytic anaplasmosis, tick-borne encephalitis, and Lyme disease. PMID:27076305

  10. Beyond the Patch: Disturbance Affects Species Abundances in the surrounding Community

    PubMed Central

    Dudgeon, Steve R.

    2009-01-01

    The role of disturbance in community ecology has been studied extensively and is thought to free resources and reset successional sequences at the local scale and create heterogeneity at the regional scale. Most studies have investigated effects on either the disturbed patch or on the entire community, but have generally ignored any effect of or on the community surrounding disturbed patches. We used marine fouling communities to examine the effect of a surrounding community on species abundance within a disturbed patch and the effect of a disturbance on species abudance in the surrounding community. We varied both the magnitude and pattern of disturbance on experimental settlement plates. Settlement plates were dominated by a non-native bryozoan, which may have established because of the large amount of initial space available on plates. Percent cover of each species within the patch were affected by the surrounding community, confirming previous studies’ predictions about edge effects from the surrounding community on dynamics within a patch. Disturbance resulted in lower percent cover in the surrounding community, but there were no differences between magnitudes or spatial patterns of disturbance. Disturbance lowered population growth rates in the surrounding community, potentially by altering the abiotic environment or species interactions. Following disturbance, the recovery of species within a patch may be affected by species in the surrounding community, but the effects of a disturbance can extend beyond the patch and alter abundances in the surrounding community. The dependence of patch dynamics on the surrounding community and the extended effects of disturbance on the surrounding community, suggest an important feedback of disturbance on patch dynamics indirectly via the surrounding community. PMID:20161249

  11. Convergence and divergence in a long-term old-field succession: the importance of spatial scale and species abundance.

    PubMed

    Li, Shao-Peng; Cadotte, Marc W; Meiners, Scott J; Pu, Zhichao; Fukami, Tadashi; Jiang, Lin

    2016-09-01

    Whether plant communities in a given region converge towards a particular stable state during succession has long been debated, but rarely tested at a sufficiently long time scale. By analysing a 50-year continuous study of post-agricultural secondary succession in New Jersey, USA, we show that the extent of community convergence varies with the spatial scale and species abundance classes. At the larger field scale, abundance-based dissimilarities among communities decreased over time, indicating convergence of dominant species, whereas incidence-based dissimilarities showed little temporal tend, indicating no sign of convergence. In contrast, plots within each field diverged in both species composition and abundance. Abundance-based successional rates decreased over time, whereas rare species and herbaceous plants showed little change in temporal turnover rates. Initial abandonment conditions only influenced community structure early in succession. Overall, our findings provide strong evidence for scale and abundance dependence of stochastic and deterministic processes over old-field succession. PMID:27373449

  12. Spatial scale, abundance and the species-energy relationship in British birds.

    PubMed

    Evans, Karl L; Newson, Stuart E; Storch, David; Greenwood, Jeremy J D; Gaston, Kevin J

    2008-03-01

    richness in a single year, is lower in high-energy regions. These negative relationships between turnover and energy appear to be causal as both total and mean occupancy per species increases with energy. 5. While total density in 1 km x 1 km plots correlates positively with energy availability, such relationships are very weak for mean density per species. This suggests that the observed association between total abundance and species richness may not be mediated by population extinction rates, as predicted by the more individuals hypothesis. 6. The sampling mechanism suggests that species-energy relationships arise as high-energy areas support a greater number of individuals, and that random allocation of these individuals to local areas from a regional assemblage will generate species-energy relationships. While randomized local species-energy relationships are linear and positive, predicted richness is consistently greater than that observed. The mismatch between the observed and randomized species-energy relationships probably arises as a consequence of the aggregated nature of species distributions. The sampling mechanism, together with species spatial aggregation driven by limited habitat availability, may thus explain the species-energy relationship observed at this spatial scale.

  13. STUDIES ON THE SPECIES COMPOSITION AND RELATIVE ABUNDANCE OF MOSQUITOES OF MPIGI DISTRICT, CENTRAL UGANDA

    PubMed Central

    Mayanja, Martin; Mutebi, John-Paul; Crabtree, Mary B.; Ssenfuka, Fred; Muwawu, Teddy; Lutwama, Julius J.

    2015-01-01

    Prediction of arboviral disease outbreaks and planning for appropriate control interventions require knowledge of the mosquito vectors involved. Although mosquito surveys have been conducted in different regions of Uganda since the mid 30’s such studies have not been carried out in Mpigi District. In October 2011, we conducted mosquito collections in Mpigi district to determine species composition and relative abundance of the different species. The survey was conducted in four villages, Njeru, Ddela, Kiwumu and Nsumbain Kammengo sub-county, Mpigi district, Uganda. CDC light traps baited with dry ice (carbon dioxide) were used to capture adult mosquitoes. A total of 54,878 mosquitoes comprising 46 species from eight genera were collected. The dominant species at all sites was Coquilletidia (Coquilletidia) fuscopennata Theobald (n=38,059, 69%), followed by Coquillettidia (Coquillettidia) metallica Theobald (n=4,265, 7.8%). The number of species collected varied from 17 in the genus Culex to 1 in the genus Lutzia. Of the 46 species identified, arboviruses had previously been isolated from 28 (60.9%) suggesting a high potential for arboviral transmission and/or maintenance in Mpigi District. PMID:26346305

  14. Direct evidence that density-dependent regulation underpins the temporal stability of abundant species in a diverse animal community

    PubMed Central

    Henderson, Peter A.; Magurran, Anne E.

    2014-01-01

    To understand how ecosystems are structured and stabilized, and to identify when communities are at risk of damage or collapse, we need to know how the abundances of the taxa in the entire assemblage vary over ecologically meaningful timescales. Here, we present an analysis of species temporal variability within a single large vertebrate community. Using an exceptionally complete 33-year monthly time series following the dynamics of 81 species of fishes, we show that the most abundant species are least variable in terms of temporal biomass, because they are under density-dependent (negative feedback) regulation. At the other extreme, a relatively large number of low abundance transient species exhibit the greatest population variability. The high stability of the consistently common high abundance species—a result of density-dependence—is reflected in the observation that they consistently represent over 98% of total fish biomass. This leads to steady ecosystem nutrient and energy flux irrespective of the changes in species number and abundance among the large number of low abundance transient species. While the density-dependence of the core species ensures stability under the existing environmental regime, the pool of transient species may support long-term stability by replacing core species should environmental conditions change. PMID:25100702

  15. Stream salamander species richness and abundance in relation to environmental factors in Shenandoah National Park, Virginia

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Grant, E.H.C.; Jung, R.E.; Rice, K.C.

    2005-01-01

    Stream salamanders are sensitive to acid mine drainage and may be sensitive to acidification and low acid neutralizing capacity (ANC) of a watershed. Streams in Shenandoah National Park, Virginia, are subject to episodic acidification from precipitation events. We surveyed 25 m by 2 m transects located on the stream bank adjacent to the water channel in Shenandoah National Park for salamanders using a stratified random sampling design based on elevation, aspect and bedrock geology. We investigated the relationships of four species (Eurycea bislineata, Desmognathus fuscus, D. monticola and Gyrinophilus porphyriticus) to habitat and water quality variables. We did not find overwhelming evidence that stream salamanders are affected by the acid-base status of streams in Shenandoah National Park. Desmognathus fuscus and D. monticola abundance was greater both in streams that had a higher potential to neutralize acidification, and in higher elevation (>700 m) streams. Neither abundance of E. bislineata nor species richness were related to any of the habitat variables. Our sampling method preferentially detected the adult age class of the study species and did not allow us to estimate population sizes. We suggest that continued monitoring of stream salamander populations in SNP will determine the effects of stream acidification on these taxa.

  16. Microbial Distribution and Abundance in the Digestive System of Five Shipworm Species (Bivalvia: Teredinidae)

    PubMed Central

    Betcher, Meghan A.; Fung, Jennifer M.; Han, Andrew W.; O’Connor, Roberta; Seronay, Romell; Concepcion, Gisela P.; Distel, Daniel L.; Haygood, Margo G.

    2012-01-01

    Marine bivalves of the family Teredinidae (shipworms) are voracious consumers of wood in marine environments. In several shipworm species, dense communities of intracellular bacterial endosymbionts have been observed within specialized cells (bacteriocytes) of the gills (ctenidia). These bacteria are proposed to contribute to digestion of wood by the host. While the microbes of shipworm gills have been studied extensively in several species, the abundance and distribution of microbes in the digestive system have not been adequately addressed. Here we use Fluorescence In-Situ Hybridization (FISH) and laser scanning confocal microscopy with 16S rRNA directed oligonucleotide probes targeting all domains, domains Bacteria and Archaea, and other taxonomic groups to examine the digestive microbiota of 17 specimens from 5 shipworm species (Bankia setacea, Lyrodus pedicellatus, Lyrodus massa, Lyrodus sp. and Teredo aff. triangularis). These data reveal that the caecum, a large sac-like appendage of the stomach that typically contains large quantities of wood particles and is considered the primary site of wood digestion, harbors only very sparse microbial populations. However, a significant number of bacterial cells were observed in fecal pellets within the intestines. These results suggest that due to low abundance, bacteria in the caecum may contribute little to lignocellulose degradation. In contrast, the comparatively high population density of bacteria in the intestine suggests a possible role for intestinal bacteria in the degradation of lignocellulose. PMID:23028923

  17. Distribution, species composition and relative abundances of sandflies in North Waziristan Agency, Pakistan.

    PubMed

    Ali, N; Ullah, A; Wahid, S; Khisroon, M; Rasheed, S B

    2016-03-01

    This study was conducted to investigate the diversity of sandflies (Psychodidae: Phlebotominae) and the incidence of leishmaniasis in three villages of North Waziristan Agency, Pakistan. Sandflies were sampled monthly during 2012, at dusk and dawn, in selected indoor habitats including both bedrooms and animal sheds using a knock-down spray catch method. A total of 3687 sandflies were collected, including 1444 individuals in Drezanda, 1193 in Damdil and 1050 in Dattakhel. This study revealed 14 species of two genera, Phlebotomus (Phlebotomus sergenti, Phlebotomus papatasi, Phlebotomus caucasicus, Phlebotomus kazeruni, Phlebotomus alexandri and Phlebotomus salehi) and Sergentomyia (Sergentomyia dentate, Sergentomyia baghdadis, Sergentomyia babu, Sergentomyia theodori, Sergentomyia sumbarica, Sergentomyia dreyfussitur kestanica, Sergentomyia hogsoni pawlowskyi and Sergentomyia fallax afghanica) (both: Diptera: Psychodidae). Phlebotomus sergenti was the most abundant species (42.1%), followed by S. dentata (17.7%) and S. baghdadis (17.4%). The number of males collected represented about twice that of female flies, and the maximum number was collected in July, followed by August. The determination of the species composition of sandfly populations, seasonal variations, relative abundances and estimations of infection in the vector population may provide information about the dynamics of leishmaniasis transmission that is useful in planning vector control activities.

  18. Monitoring species richness and abundance of shorebirds in the western Great Basin

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Warnock, N.; Haig, S.M.; Oring, L.W.

    1998-01-01

    Broad-scale avian surveys have been attempted within North America with mixed results. Arid regions, such as the Great Basin, are often poorly sampled because of the vastness of the region, inacessibilty of sites, and few ornithologist. In addition, extreme variability in wetland habitat conditions present special problems for conducting censuses of species inhabiting these areas. We examined these issues in assessing multi-scale shorebird (order: Charadriiformes) censuses conducted the western Great Basin from 1992-1997. On ground surveys, we recorded 31 species of shorebirds, but were unable to accurately estimate population size. Conversely, on aerial surveys we were able to estimate regional abundance of some shorebirds, but were unable to determined species diversity. Acrial surveys of three large alkali lakcs in Oregon (Goose, Summer, and abert Lakes) revealed > 300,000 shorebirds in one year of this study, of which 67% were American Avocets (Recurvirostra americana) and 30% phalaropes (Phalaropus spp.). These lakes clearly meet Western Hemisphere Shorebird Reserve Network guidelines for designation as important shorebirds sites. Based upon simulations of our monitoring effort and the magnitude and variation of numbers of American Avocets, detection of 5-10% negative declines in population of these birds would take a minimum of 7-23 years comparable effort. We conclude that a combination of ground and aerial surveys must be conducted at multiple sites and years and over a large region to obtain an accurate picture of the diversity, abundance, and trends of shorebirds in the western Great Basin.

  19. Monitoring species richness and abundance of shorebirds in the western Great Basin

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Warnock, N.; Haig, Susan M.; Oring, L.W.

    1998-01-01

    Broad-scale avian surveys have been attempted within North America with mixed results. Arid regions, such as the Great Basin, are often poorly sampled because of the vastness of the region, inaccessibility of sites, and few ornithologists. In addition, extreme variability in wetland habitat conditions present special problems for conducting censuses of species inhabiting these areas. We examined these issues in assessing multi-scale shorebird (order: Charadriiformes) censuses conducted in the western Great Basin from 1992-1997. On ground surveys, we recorded 31 species of shorebirds, but were unable to accurately estimate population size. Conversely, on aerial surveys we were able to estimate regional abundance of some shorebirds, but were unable to determine species diversity. Aerial surveys of three large alkali lakes in Oregon (Goose, Summer, and Abert Lakes) revealed > 300,000 shorebirds in one year of this study, of which 67% were American Avocets (Recurvirostra americana) and 30% phalaropes (Phalaropus spp.). These lakes clearly meet Western Hemisphere Shorebird Reserve Network guidelines for designation as important shorebird sites. Based upon simulations of our monitoring effort and the magnitude and variation of numbers of American Avocets, detection of S-10% negative declines in populations of these birds would take a minimum of 7-23 years of comparable effort. We conclude that a combination of ground and aerial surveys must be conducted at multiple sites and years and over a large region to obtain an accurate picture of the diversity, abundance, and trends of shorebirds in the western Great Basin.

  20. Abundance of Woody Riparian Species in the Western USA in Relation to Phenology, Climate, and Flow Regime

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Auble, G. T.; Friedman, J. M.; Scott, M. L.; Shafroth, P. B.; Merigliano, M. M.; Freehling, M. D.; Evans, R. E.; Griffin, E. R.

    2004-12-01

    We randomly selected 475 long-term U.S. Geological Survey stream gaging stations in 17 western states to relate the presence and abundance of woody species to environmental factors. Along a 1.3-km reach near each station we measured the cover of all species on a list of the 44 most abundant large woody riparian species in the region. We used logistic regression to fit the response of four abundant species to growing degree days and mean precipitation. Then we related relative abundance of these 4 species to timing of the flood peak in sites where the likelihood of occurrence was greater than 0.5. The exotics Tamarix ramosissima (saltcedar) and Elaeagnus angustifolia (Russian-olive) are now the third and fourth most frequently occurring large woody riparian species in the western U.S. and the second and fifth most abundant. In climatically suitable areas, species differences in reproductive phenology produce different relations of abundance to flow regime. Because of its limited period of seed release and viability in early summer, cottonwood (Populus deltoides) is disadvantaged where floods occur in the spring or fall. Abundances of saltcedar, because of its long period of seed release; Russian-olive, because of seed dormancy; and Salix exigua, because of the importance of vegetative spread, are much less sensitive to flood timing.

  1. Assessing landscape constraints on species abundance: does the neighborhood limit species response to local habitat conservation programs?

    PubMed

    Jorgensen, Christopher F; Powell, Larkin A; Lusk, Jeffery J; Bishop, Andrew A; Fontaine, Joseph J

    2014-01-01

    Landscapes in agricultural systems continue to undergo significant change, and the loss of biodiversity is an ever-increasing threat. Although habitat restoration is beneficial, management actions do not always result in the desired outcome. Managers must understand why management actions fail; yet, past studies have focused on assessing habitat attributes at a single spatial scale, and often fail to consider the importance of ecological mechanisms that act across spatial scales. We located survey sites across southern Nebraska, USA and conducted point counts to estimate Ring-necked Pheasant abundance, an economically important species to the region, while simultaneously quantifying landscape effects using a geographic information system. To identify suitable areas for allocating limited management resources, we assessed land cover relationships to our counts using a Bayesian binomial-Poisson hierarchical model to construct predictive Species Distribution Models of relative abundance. Our results indicated that landscape scale land cover variables severely constrained or, alternatively, facilitated the positive effects of local land management for Ring-necked Pheasants.

  2. Assessing Landscape Constraints on Species Abundance: Does the Neighborhood Limit Species Response to Local Habitat Conservation Programs?

    PubMed Central

    Jorgensen, Christopher F.; Powell, Larkin A.; Lusk, Jeffery J.; Bishop, Andrew A.; Fontaine, Joseph J.

    2014-01-01

    Landscapes in agricultural systems continue to undergo significant change, and the loss of biodiversity is an ever-increasing threat. Although habitat restoration is beneficial, management actions do not always result in the desired outcome. Managers must understand why management actions fail; yet, past studies have focused on assessing habitat attributes at a single spatial scale, and often fail to consider the importance of ecological mechanisms that act across spatial scales. We located survey sites across southern Nebraska, USA and conducted point counts to estimate Ring-necked Pheasant abundance, an economically important species to the region, while simultaneously quantifying landscape effects using a geographic information system. To identify suitable areas for allocating limited management resources, we assessed land cover relationships to our counts using a Bayesian binomial-Poisson hierarchical model to construct predictive Species Distribution Models of relative abundance. Our results indicated that landscape scale land cover variables severely constrained or, alternatively, facilitated the positive effects of local land management for Ring-necked Pheasants. PMID:24918779

  3. Distribution and abundance of decapod crustacean larvae in the southeastern Bering Sea with emphasis on commercial species. Final report

    SciTech Connect

    Armstrong, D.A.; Incze, L.S.; Wencker, D.L.; Armstrong, J.L.

    1981-01-01

    Contents include: Distribution and abundance of king crab larvae, Paralithodes camtschatica and P. platypus in the southeast Bering Sea; Distribution and abundance of the larvae of tanner crabs in the southeastern Bering Sea; Distribution and abundance of other brachyuran larvae in the southeastern Bering Sea with emphasis on Erimacrus isenbeckii; Distribution and abundance of shrimp larvae in the southeastern Bering Sea with emphasis on pandalid species; Distribution and abundance of hermit crabs (Paguridae) in the southeasternBering Sea; Possible oil impacts on decapod larbae in the southeastern Bering Sea with emphesis on the St. George Basin.

  4. The ecology of ticks and epidemiology of tick-borne viral diseases.

    PubMed

    Estrada-Peña, Agustín; de la Fuente, José

    2014-08-01

    A number of tick-borne diseases of humans have increased in incidence and geographic range over the past few decades, and there is concern that they will pose an even greater threat to public health in future. Although global warming is often cited as the underlying mechanism favoring the spread of tick-borne diseases, climate is just one of many factors that determine which tick species are found in a given geographic region, their population density, the likelihood that they will be infected with microbes pathogenic for humans and the frequency of tick-human contact. This article provides basic information needed for microbiologists to understand the many factors that affect the geographic range and population density of ticks and the risk of human exposure to infected ticks. It first briefly summarizes the life cycle and basic ecology of ticks and how ticks and vertebrate hosts interact, then reviews current understanding of the role of climate, sociodemographic factors, agricultural development and changes in human behavior that affect the incidence of tick-borne diseases. These concepts are then illustrated in specific discussions of tick-borne encephalitis and Crimean-Congo hemorrhagic fever.

  5. Host specialization in ticks and transmission of tick-borne diseases: a review

    PubMed Central

    McCoy, Karen D.; Léger, Elsa; Dietrich, Muriel

    2013-01-01

    Determining patterns of host use, and the frequency at which these patterns change, are of key importance if we are to understand tick population dynamics, the evolution of tick biodiversity, and the circulation and evolution of associated pathogens. The question of whether ticks are typically host specialists or host generalists has been subject to much debate over the last half-century. Indeed, early research proposed that morphological diversity in ticks was linked to host specific adaptations and that most ticks were specialists. Later work disputed this idea and suggested that ticks are largely limited by biogeographic conditions and tend to use all locally available host species. The work presented in this review suggests that the actual answer likely lies somewhere between these two extremes. Although recent observational studies support the view that phylogenetically diverse host species share ticks when found on similar ecological ranges, theory on host range evolution predicts that host specialization should evolve in ticks given their life history characteristics. Contemporary work employing population genetic tools to examine host-associated population structure in several tick systems support this prediction and show that simple species records are not enough to determine whether a parasite is a true host generalist; host specialization does evolve in ticks at local scales, but may not always lead to speciation. Ticks therefore seem to follow a pattern of being global generalists, local specialists. Given this, the notion of host range needs to be modified from an evolutionary perspective, where one simply counts the number of hosts used across the geographic distribution, to a more ecological view, where one considers host use at a local scale, if we are to better understand the circulation of tick-borne pathogens and exposure risks for humans and livestock. PMID:24109592

  6. Water Mites (Acari: Hydrachnida) of Ozark Streams - Abundance, Species Richness, and Potential as Environmental Indicators

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Radwell, A. J.; Brown, A. V.

    2005-05-01

    Because water mites are tightly linked to other stream metazoans through parasitism and predation, they are potentially effective indicators of environmental quality. Meiofauna (80 μm to 1 mm) were sampled from headwater riffles of 11 Ozark streams to determine relative abundance and densities of major meiofauna taxa. Water mites comprised 15.3% of the organisms collected exceeded only by chironomids (50.2%) and oligochaetes (17.8%), and mean water mite density among the 11 streams was 265 organisms per liter. The two streams that differed the most in environmental quality were sampled using techniques suitable for identification of species. An estimated 32 species from 20 genera and 13 families were found in the least disturbed stream; an estimated 19 species from 13 genera and 8 families were found in the most disturbed stream. This preliminary finding supports the notion that water mite species richness declines in response to environmental disturbance. Many species could only be identified as morphospecies of particular genera, but the ongoing taxonomic revision of Hydrachnida is expected to provide needed information. A collaborative effort between those interested in taxonomy/systematics of water mites and ecologists interested in the significance of water mites in aquatic communities could prove mutually beneficial.

  7. Tick (Amblyomma chabaudi) infestation of endemic tortoises in southwest Madagascar and investigation of tick-borne pathogens.

    PubMed

    Ehlers, Julian; Ganzhorn, Jörg U; Silaghi, Cornelia; Krüger, Andreas; Pothmann, Daniela; Ratovonamana, R Yedidya; Veit, Alexandra; Keller, Christian; Poppert, Sven

    2016-03-01

    Little is known about the role of endemic ticks as vectors for bacterial and protozoan pathogens for animals and humans in Madagascar and their interaction in anthropogenic habitats where humans, their livestock and native Malagasy species (vectors and hosts) come into more frequent contact than in natural forest ecosystems. The aims of the study were (1) to test whether habitat degradation is associated with increased infestation of tortoises by ticks and (2) to investigate whether ticks carried Babesia, Borrelia or Rickettsia species that might be pathogenic for humans and livestock. We studied hard ticks of two endemic Malagasy tortoises, Astrochelys radiata and Pyxis arachnoides in March and April 2013 in southwest Madagascar. Two tortoise habitats were compared, the National Park of Tsimanampetsotsa and the adjacent degraded pasture and agricultural land at the end of the wet season. Ticks were screened for protozoan and bacterial pathogens via PCR on DNA isolated fr