Nossen, Ida; Ciesielski, Tomasz M; Dimmen, Malene V; Jensen, Henrik; Ringsby, Thor Harald; Polder, Anuschka; Rønning, Bernt; Jenssen, Bjørn M; Styrishave, Bjarne
At high trophic levels, environmental contaminants have been found to affect endocrinological processes. Less attention has been paid to species at lower trophic levels. The house sparrow (Passer domesticus) may be a useful model for investigating effects of POPs in mid-range trophic level species. In male house sparrows, ornamental traits involved in male quality signalling are important for female selection. These traits are governed by endocrinological systems, and POPs may therefore interfere with male quality signalling. The aim of the present study was to use the house sparrow as a mid-range trophic level model species to study the effects of environmental contaminants on endocrinology and male quality signalling. We analysed the levels of selected PCBs, PBDEs and OCPs and investigated the possible effects of these contaminants on circulating levels of steroid hormones (4 progestagens, 4 androgens and 3 estrogens) in male and female adult house sparrows from a population on the island Leka, Norway. Plasma samples were analysed for steroid hormones by GC-MS and liver samples were analysed for environmental contaminants by GC-ECD and GC-MS. In males, we also quantified ornament traits. It was hypothesised that POPs may have endocrine disrupting effects on the local house sparrow population and can thus interfere with the steroid hormone homeostasis. Among female house sparrows, bivariate correlations revealed negative relationships between POPs and estrogens. Among male sparrows, positive relationships between dihydrotestosterone levels and PCBs were observed. In males, positive relationships were also found between steroids and beak length, and between steroids and ornamental traits such as total badge size. This was confirmed by a significant OPLS model between beak length and steroids. Although sparrows are in the mid-range trophic levels, the present study indicates that POPs may affect steroid homeostasis in house sparrows, in particular for females. For
Kosicki, Jakub Z.; Sparks, Tim H.; Tryjanowski, Piotr
As with many farmland bird species, the house sparrow Passer domesticus is declining in Europe, mainly due to intensification of agriculture reducing nest sites and food supplies. During 2002-2005, we studied the population size and nest site characteristics of house sparrows breeding within white stork Ciconia ciconia nests in a large area of agricultural landscape within western Poland. To explain sparrow density within stork nests, we examined characteristics of white stork nests (position, age, productivity) and the farm type around the nest. House sparrow density was greatest in the longest established (and hence larger) white stork nests located on traditionally managed farms. Two recent changes appear to have adverse effects on house sparrows. The first is the intensification of farming and the second is active management of white stork nests on electric poles to reduce nest size and thus avoid both disruption to the electrical supply and electrocution of white storks. Because the white stork has such a high profile in Poland, there are numerous schemes to conserve and enhance this species. In conclusion, we clearly show that protecting one species can have valuable, although unplanned, benefits to another species of conservation interest, the house sparrow.
Sætre, Glenn-Peter; Riyahi, S; Aliabadian, M; Hermansen, J S; Hogner, S; Olsson, U; Gonzalez Rojas, M F; Sæther, S A; Trier, C N; Elgvin, T O
The current, virtually worldwide distribution of the house sparrow (Passer domesticus) is a result of its commensal relationship with humans. It has been suggested that long before the advent of agriculture, an early glacial advance resulted in two disjunct ranges of ancestral house sparrows - one in the Middle East and another on the Indian subcontinent. Differentiation during this period of isolation resulted in two major groups of subspecies: the domesticus group and the indicus group. According to this hypothesis, commensalism with humans would have evolved independently in the two regions and at least twice. An alternative hypothesis is that morphological differences between the subspecies represent very recent differentiation, following expansions from a single source. To test between these hypotheses, we analysed genetic variation at the mitochondrial DNA control region and at three nuclear loci from several house sparrow populations in Europe, Asia and North Africa. No differentiation between the indicus and domesticus groups was found, supporting the single origin hypothesis. One of the subspecies in the indicus group, P. d. bactrianus, differs ecologically from other house sparrows in being migratory and in preferentially breeding in natural habitat. We suggest that bactrianus represents a relict population of the ancestral, noncommensal house sparrow. When agricultural societies developed in the Middle East about 10 000 years ago, a local house sparrow population of the bactrianus type adapted to the novel environment and eventually became a sedentary, human commensal. As agriculture and human civilizations expanded, house sparrows experienced a correlated and massive expansion in range and numbers. The pattern of genetic variation analysed here is consistent with this scenario.
Hejlícek, K; Treml, F
The occurrence and extension of avian mycobacteriosis in house-sparrows (P. domesticus) and mountain-sparrows (P. montanus) have been followed under different epidemiological conditions. Out of 2.929 totally examined house-sparrow pathological changes of tuberculosis were found in 3 (0.10%) animals and in 14 (0.48%) animals the mycobacteria were isolated. By an examination of 544 mountain-sparrow the mycobacteria in 12 (2.20%) cases and in 1 case were isolated and the mycobacteria were found in the intestinal contents. Out of 11 different locations the mycobacteria were found only in places where a contact between sparrows and poultry contaminated by TBC was possible. In some cases the sparrow could be a source of mycobacteria for cattle as well. Simultaneously, the occurrence of TBC in sparrows out of cattle stables correlated with high incidence of avian tuberculin reactions in cattle stabled there. The sparrow could be here not only the source but also an indicator of mycobacteria environment infection. All isolated strains of mycobacteria were virulent for poultry. In experimental infections there was proven a high sensitivity of both species of sparrows to M. avium. After intramuscular infection of M. avium suspension the histological changes in liver have been observed after 12 days, the microscopic changes after 21 days and miliary TBC after 35 days. Peroral infection by food contaminated by TBC poultry livers caused TBC changes in liver and spleen with clinical symptoms and death after 91 days. After free contact between TBC poultry and healthy sparrows the tuberculous changes of parenchymatous organs in sparrows were found after 180 days. There was no difference in sensitivity between the house-sparrow and mountain-sparrow. The transfer of M. avium from TBC-infected sparrows to pigs and poultry was successful. After 45 days of join contact among TBC sparrows, healthy pigs and poultry in stables and after further stay of pigs and poultry in contaminated
O'Brien, Valerie A.; Meteyer, Carol U.; Reisen, William K.; Ip, Hon S.; Brown, Charles R.
Nestling birds are rarely sampled in the field for most arboviruses, yet they may be important in arbovirus amplification cycles. We sampled both nestling and adult house sparrows (Passer domesticus) in western Nebraska for West Nile virus (WNV) or WNV-specific antibodies throughout the summer of 2008 and describe pathology in naturally infected nestlings. Across the summer, 4% of nestling house sparrows were WNV-positive; for the month of August alone, 12.3% were positive. Two WNV-positive nestlings exhibited encephalitis, splenomegaly, hepatic necrosis, nephrosis, and myocarditis. One nestling sparrow had large mural thrombi in the atria and ventricle and immunohistochemical staining of WNV antigen in multiple organs including the wall of the aorta and pulmonary artery; cardiac insufficiency thus may have been a cause of death. Adult house sparrows showed an overall seroprevalence of 13.8% that did not change significantly across the summer months. The WNV-positive nestlings and the majority of seropositive adults were detected within separate spatial clusters. Nestling birds, especially those reared late in the summer when WNV activity is typically greatest, may be important in virus amplification. PMID:20439979
Muñoz-Garcia, Agustí; Williams, Joseph B.
Intercellular lipids of the stratum corneum (SC), the outer layer of the epidermis, form a barrier to water vapor diffusion through the skin. Previously, we measured cutaneous water loss (CWL) and lipid composition of the SC of adult house sparrows from two populations, one living in the deserts of Saudi Arabia and another living in mesic Ohio. Adult desert house sparrows had a lower CWL, a lower proportion of free fatty acids, and a higher proportion of ceramides and cerebrosides in the SC compared with mesic sparrows. In this study, we investigated developmental plasticity of CWL and lipid composition of the SC in desert and mesic nestling house sparrows reared in low and high humidity and compared our results with previous work on adults. We measured CWL of nestlings and analyzed the lipid composition of the SC using thin-layer chromatography. We showed that nestling house sparrows from both localities had higher CWL than adults in their natural environment, a result of major modifications of the lipid composition of the SC. The expression of plasticity in CWL seems to be a response to opposed selection pressures, thermoregulation and water conservation, at different life stages, on which regulation of CWL plays a crucial role. Desert nestlings showed a greater degree of plasticity in CWL and lipid composition of the SC than did mesic nestlings, a finding consistent with the idea that organisms exposed to more environmental stress ought to be more plastic than individuals living in more benign environments. PMID:18838693
Meillère, Alizée; Brischoux, François; Ribout, Cécile; Angelier, Frédéric
In a consistently urbanizing world, anthropogenic noise has become almost omnipresent, and there are increasing evidence that high noise levels can have major impacts on wildlife. While the effects of anthropogenic noise exposure on adult animals have been widely studied, surprisingly, there has been little consideration of the effects of noise pollution on developing organisms. Yet, environmental conditions experienced in early life can have dramatic lifelong consequences for fitness. Here, we experimentally manipulated the acoustic environment of free-living house sparrows (Passer domesticus) breeding in nest boxes. We focused on the impact of such disturbance on nestlings’ telomere length and fledging success, as telomeres (the protective ends of chromosomes) appear to be a promising predictor of longevity. We showed that despite the absence of any obvious immediate consequences (growth and fledging success), nestlings reared under traffic noise exposure exhibited reduced telomere lengths compared with their unexposed neighbours. Although the mechanisms responsible for this effect remain to be determined, our results provide the first experimental evidence that noise alone can affect a wild vertebrate's early-life telomere length. This suggests that noise exposure may entail important costs for developing organisms. PMID:26382074
Meillère, Alizée; Brischoux, François; Ribout, Cécile; Angelier, Frédéric
In a consistently urbanizing world, anthropogenic noise has become almost omnipresent, and there are increasing evidence that high noise levels can have major impacts on wildlife. While the effects of anthropogenic noise exposure on adult animals have been widely studied, surprisingly, there has been little consideration of the effects of noise pollution on developing organisms. Yet, environmental conditions experienced in early life can have dramatic lifelong consequences for fitness. Here, we experimentally manipulated the acoustic environment of free-living house sparrows (Passer domesticus) breeding in nest boxes. We focused on the impact of such disturbance on nestlings' telomere length and fledging success, as telomeres (the protective ends of chromosomes) appear to be a promising predictor of longevity. We showed that despite the absence of any obvious immediate consequences (growth and fledging success), nestlings reared under traffic noise exposure exhibited reduced telomere lengths compared with their unexposed neighbours. Although the mechanisms responsible for this effect remain to be determined, our results provide the first experimental evidence that noise alone can affect a wild vertebrate's early-life telomere length. This suggests that noise exposure may entail important costs for developing organisms.
Martin, Lynn B; Alam, Jennifer L; Imboma, Titus; Liebl, Andrea L
Many introduced animals harbor fewer parasites than native ones. This "enemy release" can select for individuals that bias resources away from parasite resistance traits, including immune functions, and towards traits that enhance success in new areas. One vertebrate example that supports this hypothesis involves house sparrows (Passer domesticus) and Eurasian tree sparrows (Passer montanus) introduced to St. Louis, MO, USA, over 150 years ago. Since ca. 1850, house sparrows have colonized most of North America whereas tree sparrows have expanded little from the area of introduction. The more successful house sparrows now exhibit weaker inflammatory responses than the less successful tree sparrows, which supports the possibility that diminished investments in immune defense may have been conducive to the initial colonization by the more successful species. The goal of the present study was to determine whether damped inflammation generally facilitates invasion by comparing inflammatory markers between house sparrows invading Kenya and a native congener. House sparrows arrived in Mombasa, Kenya, about 50 years ago whereas rufous sparrows (Passer ruficinctus) are native but ecologically similar. We predicted that if inflammation mediated invasion success, Kenyan house sparrows would mount weaker inflammatory responses than the native species. Complete Freund's adjuvant (CFA), a strong inflammatory stimulus, increased body mass in house sparrows, a result unprecedented in any other vertebrate. Haptoglobin (Hp), a multi-functional acute phase protein, was elevated by CFA in both species but rufous sparrows maintained more Hp than house sparrows irrespective of treatment. Lysozyme, a broadly effective antimicrobial enzyme, was reduced by CFA in both species, but not differentially so. Corticosterone was unaffected by CFA in either species, but elevated in both relative to free-living individuals.
Birds frequently signal different qualities by plumage colouration, mainly during mating. However, plumage colouration is determined during the moult, and therefore it would indicate the quality of individual birds during the moult, not its current quality. Recent studies, however, suggest that birds could modify plumage colouration by using cosmetic preen oil produced by the uropygial gland. In this study, I show that bib colouration is related to uropygial gland size and body condition in male house sparrows (Passer domesticus). Moreover, I conducted an experiment in which a group of sparrows were inoculated with an antigen, mimicking an illness. In control birds, short-term changes in bib colouration were related to both body condition and change in uropygial gland size. Therefore, birds that reduced uropygial gland size showed a greater colouration change. However, bib colouration did not change with the change in uropygial gland size in experimental birds inoculated with the antigen. Given that the experiment did not affect preen oil production or consumption, this finding tentatively suggests that the immune challenge provoked a change in the composition of preen oil, affecting its cosmetic properties. In short, the results of this study suggest that (1) male house sparrows produce cosmetic preen oil that alters the colouration of their bibs; (2) the more change in uropygial gland size, the more change in bib colouration; and (3) in this way, bib colouration has the potential to signal current health status, since less healthy birds showed less capacity to change bib colouration. PMID:27280079
Martin, Lynn B; Coon, Courtney A C; Liebl, Andrea L; Schrey, Aaron W
Interactions between hosts and parasites influence the success of host introductions and range expansions post-introduction. However, the physiological mechanisms mediating these outcomes are little known. In some vertebrates, variation in the regulation of inflammation has been implicated, perhaps because inflammation imparts excessive costs, including high resource demands and collateral damage upon encounter with novel parasites. Here, we tested the hypothesis that variation in the regulation of inflammation contributed to the spread of house sparrows (Passer domesticus) across Kenya, one of the world's most recent invasions of this species. Specifically, we asked whether inflammatory gene expression declines with population age (i.e. distance from Mombasa (dfM), the site of introduction around 1950). We compared expression of two microbe surveillance molecules (Toll-like receptors, TLRs-2 and 4) and a proinflammatory cytokine (interleukin-6, IL-6) before and after an injection of an immunogenic component of Gram-negative bacteria (lipopolysaccharide, LPS) among six sparrow populations. We then used a best-subset model selection approach to determine whether population age (dfM) or other factors (e.g. malaria or coccidian infection, sparrow density or genetic group membership) best-explained gene expression. For baseline expression of TLR-2 and TLR-4, population age tended to be the best predictor with expression decreasing with population age, although other factors were also important. Induced expression of TLRs was affected by LPS treatment alone. For induced IL-6, only LPS treatment reliably predicted expression; baseline expression was not explained by any factor. These data suggest that changes in microbe surveillance, more so than downstream control of inflammation via cytokines, might have been important to the house sparrow invasion of Kenya.
Liker, A; Bókony, V; Kulcsár, A; Tóth, Z; Szabó, K; Kaholek, B; Pénzes, Z
Social behaviour of group-living animals is often influenced by the relatedness of individuals, thus understanding the genetic structure of groups is important for the interpretation of costs and benefits of social interactions. In this study, we investigated genetic relatedness in feeding aggregations of free-living house sparrows (Passer domesticus) during the nonbreeding season. This species is a frequent model system for studies of social behaviour (e.g. aggression, social foraging), but we lack adequate information on the kin structure of sparrow flocks. During two winters, we ringed and observed sparrows at feeding stations, and used resightings to identify stable flock-members and to calculate association indices between birds. We genotyped the birds using seven highly polymorphic microsatellite loci, and estimated pairwise relatedness coefficients and relatedness categories (close kin vs. unrelated) by maximum likelihood method. We found that most birds were unrelated to each other in the flocks (mean +/- SE relatedness coefficient: 0.06 +/- 0.002), although most individuals had at least a few close relatives in their home flock (14.3 +/- 0.6% of flock-mates). Pairwise association between individuals was not significantly related to their genetic relatedness. Furthermore, there was no difference between within-flock vs. between-flock relatedness, and birds had similar proportions of close kin within and outside their home flock. Finally, relatedness among members of different flocks was unrelated to the distance between their flocks. Thus, sparrow flocks were not characterized by association of relatives, nevertheless the presence of some close kin may provide opportunity for kin-biased behaviours to evolve.
Liker, A; Papp, Z; Bókony, V; Lendvai, A Z
1. Urbanized habitats differ from natural ones in several ecological features, including climate, food availability, strength of predation and competition. Although the effects of urbanization on avian community composition are well known, there is much less information about how individual birds are affected by these human-generated habitat differences. 2. In this study we investigated the relationships between the morphological characteristics and the degree of habitat urbanization in house sparrows, Passer domesticus (Linne 1758) . We collected data for more than 1000 non-breeding adult birds in Hungary between 1997 and 2006, from seven sites including farmlands, suburban areas and city centres. 3. We found that the body mass, tarsus length and body condition of free-living sparrows differed among the sites: birds in more urbanized habitats were consistently smaller and in worse condition than birds in more rural habitats. A composite measure of habitat urbanization (based on building density, road density and vegetation cover) explained over 75% of variance between sites in the studied traits, after we controlled for the effects of sex, year, season and time of capture. 4. The difference in body mass between rural and urban sparrows was significant when birds were kept in aviaries under identical conditions, with constant ad libitum food availability. It is therefore unlikely that the reduced body size and condition of urban sparrows are a consequence of reduced access to food for adults (e.g. due to strong competition), or their short-term responses to high food predictability (e.g. by strategic mass regulation). 5. We suggest that habitat differences in nestling development or adaptive divergence of sparrow populations due to distinct environmental conditions (such as differing predation pressure) may account for the differences along the urbanization gradient.
Rouffaer, Lieze Oscar; Lens, Luc; Haesendonck, Roel; Teyssier, Aimeric; Hudin, Noraine Salleh; Strubbe, Diederik; Haesebrouck, Freddy; Pasmans, Frank; Martel, An
In recent decades major declines in urban house sparrow (Passer domesticus) populations have been observed in north-western European cities, whereas suburban and rural house sparrow populations have remained relatively stable or are recovering from previous declines. Differential exposure to avian pathogens known to cause epidemics in house sparrows may in part explain this spatial pattern of declines. Here we investigate the potential effect of urbanization on the development of a bacterial pathogen reservoir in free-ranging house sparrows. This was achieved by comparing the prevalence of Salmonella enterica subspecies enterica serotype Typhimurium in 364 apparently healthy house sparrows captured in urban, suburban and rural regions across Flanders, Belgium between September 2013 and March 2014. In addition 12 dead birds, received from bird rescue centers, were necropsied. The apparent absence of Salmonella Typhimurium in fecal samples of healthy birds, and the identification of only one house sparrow seropositive for Salmonella spp., suggests that during the winter of 2013–2014 these birds did not represent any considerable Salmonella Typhimurium reservoir in Belgium and thus may be considered naïve hosts, susceptible to clinical infection. This susceptibility is demonstrated by the isolation of two different Salmonella Typhimurium strains from two of the deceased house sparrows: one DT99, typically associated with disease in pigeons, and one DT195, previously associated with a passerine decline. The apparent absence (prevalence: <1.3%) of a reservoir in healthy house sparrows and the association of infection with clinical disease suggests that the impact of Salmonella Typhimurium on house sparrows is largely driven by the risk of exogenous exposure to pathogenic Salmonella Typhimurium strains. However, no inference could be made on a causal relationship between Salmonella infection and the observed house sparrow population declines. PMID:27168186
Bichet, Coraline; Sorci, Gabriele; Robert, Alexandre; Julliard, Romain; Lendvai, Adám Z; Chastel, Olivier; Garnier, Stephane; Loiseau, Claire
In vertebrates, multiple host characteristics and environmental factors are known to influence infectious disease dynamics. Here, we investigated variability in prevalence and parasitemia of Plasmodium relictum in the house sparrow ( Passer domesticus ) across a large number of rural and urban populations (n = 16). We found that prevalence was not predicted by any of the host traits investigated (age, sex, body mass, or wing length). However, parasitemia was significantly higher in females when compared to males and in 1-yr-olds as compared to older individuals. Neither prevalence nor parasitemia differed according to habitat type (urban vs. rural). These results suggest that inter-population variation in parasitemia depends on host intrinsic factors whereas variation in prevalence could be due to environmental differences between populations, such as climatic variables that might affect the abundance of vectors. This large-scale study gives us a better understanding of the key factors involved in the epidemiology of avian malaria.
Ruiz-Martínez, Jorge; Ferraguti, Martina; Figuerola, Jordi; Martínez-de la Puente, Josué; Williams, Richard Alexander John; Herrera-Dueñas, Amparo; Aguirre, José Ignacio; Soriguer, Ramón; Escudero, Clara; Moens, Michaël André Jean; Pérez-Tris, Javier; Benítez, Laura
Avipoxvirus (APV) is a fairly common virus affecting birds that causes morbidity and mortality in wild and captive birds. We studied the prevalence of pox-like lesions and genetic diversity of APV in house sparrows (Passer domesticus) in natural, agricultural and urban areas in southern Spain in 2013 and 2014 and in central Spain for 8 months (2012-2013). Overall, 3.2% of 2,341 house sparrows visually examined in southern Spain had cutaneous lesions consistent with avian pox. A similar prevalence (3%) was found in 338 birds from central Spain. Prevalence was higher in hatch-year birds than in adults. We did not detect any clear spatial or temporal patterns of APV distribution. Molecular analyses of poxvirus-like lesions revealed that 63% of the samples were positive. Molecular and phylogenetic analyses of 29 DNA sequences from the fpv167 gene, detected two strains belonging to the canarypox clade (subclades B1 and B2) previously found in Spain. One of them appears predominant in Iberia and North Africa and shares 70% similarity to fowlpox and canarypox virus. This APV strain has been identified in a limited number of species in the Iberian Peninsula, Morocco and Hungary. The second one has a global distribution and has been found in numerous wild bird species around the world. To our knowledge, this represents the largest study of avian poxvirus disease in the broadly distributed house sparrow and strongly supports the findings that Avipox prevalence in this species in South and central Spain is moderate and the genetic diversity low.
Ruiz-Martínez, Jorge; Ferraguti, Martina; Figuerola, Jordi; Martínez-de la Puente, Josué; Williams, Richard Alexander John; Herrera-Dueñas, Amparo; Aguirre, José Ignacio; Soriguer, Ramón; Escudero, Clara; Moens, Michaël André Jean; Pérez-Tris, Javier; Benítez, Laura
Avipoxvirus (APV) is a fairly common virus affecting birds that causes morbidity and mortality in wild and captive birds. We studied the prevalence of pox-like lesions and genetic diversity of APV in house sparrows (Passer domesticus) in natural, agricultural and urban areas in southern Spain in 2013 and 2014 and in central Spain for 8 months (2012–2013). Overall, 3.2% of 2,341 house sparrows visually examined in southern Spain had cutaneous lesions consistent with avian pox. A similar prevalence (3%) was found in 338 birds from central Spain. Prevalence was higher in hatch-year birds than in adults. We did not detect any clear spatial or temporal patterns of APV distribution. Molecular analyses of poxvirus-like lesions revealed that 63% of the samples were positive. Molecular and phylogenetic analyses of 29 DNA sequences from the fpv167 gene, detected two strains belonging to the canarypox clade (subclades B1 and B2) previously found in Spain. One of them appears predominant in Iberia and North Africa and shares 70% similarity to fowlpox and canarypox virus. This APV strain has been identified in a limited number of species in the Iberian Peninsula, Morocco and Hungary. The second one has a global distribution and has been found in numerous wild bird species around the world. To our knowledge, this represents the largest study of avian poxvirus disease in the broadly distributed house sparrow and strongly supports the findings that Avipox prevalence in this species in South and central Spain is moderate and the genetic diversity low. PMID:28005936
Warner, Sarah E; Shriver, W Gregory; Olsen, Brian J; Greenberg, Russell G; Taylor, Robert J
We estimated mercury exposure and bioaccumulation in sparrow feathers to determine variation among age groups, between sparrow species, and between feather types. Results of feather mercury studies in piscivorous birds indicate that mercury concentrations tend to increase with age and differ between feather types; however, data for insectivorous birds are lacking. We estimated mercury exposure of two insectivorous and sympatric tidal marsh sparrows: coastal plain swamp sparrow (Melospiza georgiana nigrescens), and seaside sparrow (Ammodramous maritimus). Tidal marshes have favorable conditions for mercury methlyation, thus it is likely that tidal marsh sparrows are exposed to methylmercury. We found no difference in mercury concentrations between males and female birds of both species. Adult swamp sparrow feather mercury concentrations did not differ among adult age groups; therefore, mercury was not found to increase with age in sparrows at the site. Hatch-year birds had significantly greater feather mercury concentrations compared with adult birds for both species. Mercury concentrations in adult seaside sparrows were twice as high as those in adult swamp sparrows suggesting species-specific variation, although concentrations in hatch-year sparrow species did not differ. Mercury concentrations differed between feather types in adults of both species. The first primary feather of both species had at least three times greater mercury concentrations than the outer tail feather possibly reflecting varying depuration rates with feather type.
Background The granivorous house sparrow Passer domesticus is thought to have developed its commensal relationship with humans with the rise of agriculture in the Middle East some 10,000 years ago, and to have expanded with the spread of agriculture in Eurasia during the last few thousand years. One subspecies, P. d. bactrianus, residing in Central Asia, has apparently maintained the ancestral ecology, however. This subspecies is not associated with human settlements; it is migratory and lives in natural grass- and wetland habitats feeding on wild grass seeds. It is well documented that the agricultural revolution was associated with an increase in grain size and changes in seed structure in cultivated cereals, the preferred food source of commensal house sparrow. Accordingly, we hypothesize that correlated changes may have occurred in beak and skull morphology as adaptive responses to the change in diet. Here, we test this hypothesis by comparing the skull shapes of 101 house sparrows from Iran, belonging to five different subspecies, including the non-commensal P. d. bactrianus, using geometric morphometrics. Results The various commensal house sparrow subspecies share subtle but consistent skeletal features that differ significantly from those of the non-commensal P. d. bactrianus. Although there is a marked overall size allometry in the data set, the shape difference between the ecologically differentiated sparrows cannot be explained by differences in size alone. Relative to the size allometry commensal house sparrows exhibit a skull shape consistent with accelerated development (heterochrony), resulting in a more robust facial cranium and a larger, more pointed beak. Conclusion The difference in skull shape and robustness of the beak between commensal and non-commensal house sparrows is consistent with adaptations to process the larger and rachis encapsulated seeds of domesticated cereals among human associated populations. PMID:24044497
Liebl, Andrea L; Shimizu, Toru; Martin, Lynn B
Glucocorticoids (GCs) help individuals cope with changes throughout life; one such change is the seasonal transition through life-history stages. Previous research shows that many animals exhibit seasonal variation in baseline GCs and GC responses to stressors, but the effects of season on other aspects of GC regulation have been less studied. Moreover, whether elements of GC regulation covary within individuals and whether covariation changes seasonally has been not been investigated. Evolutionarily, strong linkages among GC regulatory elements is predicted to enhance system efficiency and regulation, however may reduce the plasticity necessary to ensure appropriate responses under varying conditions. Here, we measured corticosterone (CORT), the major avian GC, at baseline, after exposure to a restraint stressor, and in response to dexamethasone (to assess negative feedback capacity) in wild house sparrows (Passer domesticus) during the breeding and molting seasons. We also measured hippocampal mRNA expression of the two receptors primarily responsible for CORT regulation: the mineralocorticoid and glucocorticoid receptors (MR and GR, respectively). Consistent with previous studies, restraint-induced CORT was lower during molt than breeding, but negative-feedback was not influenced by season. Receptor gene expression was affected by season, however, as during breeding, the ratio of MR to GR expression was significantly lower than during molt. Furthermore, MR expression was negatively correlated with CORT released in response to a stressor, but only during molt. We found that individuals that most strongly up-regulated CORT in response to restraint were also most effective at reducing CORT via negative feedback; although these relationships were independent of season, they were stronger during molt.
O'Brien, Valerie A.; Brown, Charles R.
The transmission of parasites and pathogens among vertebrates often depends on host population size, host species diversity, and the extent of crowding among potential hosts, but little is known about how these variables apply to most vector-borne pathogens such as the arboviruses (arthropod-borne viruses). Buggy Creek virus (BCRV; Togaviridae: Alphavirus) is an RNA arbovirus transmitted by the swallow bug (Oeciacus vicarius) to the cliff swallow (Petrochelidon pyrrhonota) and the introduced house sparrow (Passer domesticus) that has recently invaded swallow nesting colonies. The virus has little impact on cliff swallows, but house sparrows are seriously affected by BCRV. For house sparrows occupying swallow nesting colonies in western Nebraska, USA, the prevalence of BCRV in nestling sparrows increased with sparrow colony size at a site but decreased with the number of cliff swallows present. If one nestling in a nest was infected with the virus, there was a greater likelihood that one or more of its nest-mates would also be infected than nestlings chosen at random. The closer a nest was to another nest containing infected nestlings, the greater the likelihood that some of the nestlings in the focal nest would be BCRV-positive. These results illustrate that BCRV represents a cost of coloniality for a vertebrate host (the house sparrow), perhaps the first such demonstration for an arbovirus, and that virus infection is spatially clustered within nests and within colonies. The decreased incidence of BCRV in sparrows as cliff swallows at a site increased reflects the “dilution effect,” in which virus transmission is reduced when a vector switches to feeding on a less competent vertebrate host. PMID:21966539
O'Brien, Valerie A; Brown, Charles R
The transmission of parasites and pathogens among vertebrates often depends on host population size, host species diversity, and the extent of crowding among potential hosts, but little is known about how these variables apply to most vector-borne pathogens such as the arboviruses (arthropod-borne viruses). Buggy Creek virus (BCRV; Togaviridae: Alphavirus) is an RNA arbovirus transmitted by the swallow bug (Oeciacus vicarius) to the cliff swallow (Petrochelidon pyrrhonota) and the introduced house sparrow (Passer domesticus) that has recently invaded swallow nesting colonies. The virus has little impact on cliff swallows, but house sparrows are seriously affected by BCRV. For house sparrows occupying swallow nesting colonies in western Nebraska, USA, the prevalence of BCRV in nestling sparrows increased with sparrow colony size at a site but decreased with the number of cliff swallows present. If one nestling in a nest was infected with the virus, there was a greater likelihood that one or more of its nest-mates would also be infected than nestlings chosen at random. The closer a nest was to another nest containing infected nestlings, the greater the likelihood that some of the nestlings in the focal nest would be BCRV-positive. These results illustrate that BCRV represents a cost of coloniality for a vertebrate host (the house sparrow), perhaps the first such demonstration for an arbovirus, and that virus infection is spatially clustered within nests and within colonies. The decreased incidence of BCRV in sparrows as cliff swallows at a site increased reflects the "dilution effect," in which virus transmission is reduced when a vector switches to feeding on a less competent vertebrate host.
Hamer, Gabriel L.; Anderson, Tavis K.; Berry, Garrett E.; Makohon-Moore, Alvin P.; Crafton, Jeffrey C.; Brawn, Jeffrey D.; Dolinski, Amanda C.; Krebs, Bethany L.; Ruiz, Marilyn O.; Muzzall, Patrick M.; Goldberg, Tony L.; Walker, Edward D.
Hosts are commonly infected with a suite of parasites, and interactions among these parasites can affect the size, structure, and behavior of host–parasite communities. As an important step to understanding the significance of co-circulating parasites, we describe prevalence of co-circulating hemoparasites in two important avian amplification hosts for West Nile virus (WNV), the American robin (Turdus migratorius) and house sparrow (Passer domesticus), during the 2010–2011 in Chicago, Illinois, USA. Rates of nematode microfilariemia were 1.5% of the robins (n = 70) and 4.2% of the house sparrows (n = 72) collected during the day and 11.1% of the roosting robins (n = 63) and 0% of the house sparrows (n = 11) collected at night. Phylogenetic analysis of nucleotide sequences of the 18S rRNA and cytochrome oxidase subunit I (COI) genes from these parasites resolved two clades of filarioid nematodes. Microscopy revealed that 18.0% of American robins (n = 133) and 16.9% of house sparrows (n = 83) hosted trypanosomes in the blood. Phylogenetic analysis of nucleotide sequences from the 18s rRNA gene revealed that the trypanosomes fall within previously described avian trypanosome clades. These results document hemoparasites in the blood of WNV hosts in a center of endemic WNV transmission, suggesting a potential for direct or indirect interactions with the virus. PMID:24533314
Ilan, Tomer; Katsnelson, Edith; Motro, Uzi; Feldman, Marcus W; Lotem, Arnon
Although there has been extensive research on the evolution of individual decision making under risk (when facing variable outcomes), little is known on how the evolution of such decision-making mechanisms has been shaped by social learning and exploitation. We presented socially foraging house sparrows with a choice between scattered feeding wells in which millet seeds were hidden under 2 types of colored sand: green sand offering ~80 seeds with a probability of 0.1 (high risk-high reward) and yellow sand offering 1 seed with certainty (low risk-low reward). Although the expected benefit of choosing variable wells was 8 times higher than that of choosing constant wells, only some sparrows developed a preference for variable wells, whereas others developed a significant preference for constant wells. We found that this dichotomy could be explained by stochastic individual differences in sampling success during foraging, rather than by social foraging strategies (active searching vs. joining others). Moreover, preference for variable or constant wells was related to the sparrows' success during searching, rather than during joining others or when picking exposed seeds (i.e., they learn when actively searching in the sand). Finally, although for many sparrows learning resulted in an apparently maladaptive risk aversion, group living still allowed them to enjoy profitable variable wells by occasionally joining variable-preferring sparrows.
Khalilieh, Anton; McCue, Marshall D; Pinshow, Berry
Many wild birds fast during reproduction, molting, migration, or because of limited food availability. Species that are adapted to fasting sequentially oxidize endogenous fuels in three discrete phases. We hypothesized that species not adapted to long fasts have truncated, but otherwise similar, phases of fasting, sequential changes in fuel oxidization, and similar changes in blood metabolites to fasting-adapted species. We tested salient predictions in house sparrows (Passer domesticus biblicus), a subspecies that is unable to tolerate more than ~32 h of fasting. Our main hypothesis was that fasting sparrows sequentially oxidize substrates in the order carbohydrates, lipids, and protein. We dosed 24 house sparrows with [(13)C]glucose, palmitic acid, or glycine and measured (13)CO(2) in their breath while they fasted for 24 h. To ascertain whether blood metabolite levels reflect fasting-induced changes in metabolic fuels, we also measured glucose, triacylglycerides, and β-hydroxybutyrate in the birds' blood. The results of both breath (13)CO(2) and plasma metabolite analyses did not support our hypothesis; i.e., that sparrows have the same metabolic responses characteristic of fasting-adapted species, but on a shorter time scale. Contrary to our main prediction, we found that recently assimilated (13)C-tracers were oxidized continuously in different patterns with no definite peaks corresponding to the three phases of fasting and also that changes in plasma metabolite levels accurately tracked the changes found by breath analysis. Notably, the rate of recently assimilated [(13)C]glycine oxidization was significantly higher (P < 0.001) than that of the other metabolic tracers at all postdosing intervals. We conclude that the inability of house sparrows to fast for longer than 32 h is likely related to their inability to accrue large lipid stores, separately oxidize different fuels, and/or spare protein during fasting.
Vangestel, C; Mergeay, J; Dawson, D A; Callens, T; Vandomme, V; Lens, L
House sparrow (Passer domesticus) populations have suffered major declines in urban as well as rural areas, while remaining relatively stable in suburban ones. Yet, to date no exhaustive attempt has been made to examine how, and to what extent, spatial variation in population demography is reflected in genetic population structuring along contemporary urbanization gradients. Here we use putatively neutral microsatellite loci to study if and how genetic variation can be partitioned in a hierarchical way among different urbanization classes. Principal coordinate analyses did not support the hypothesis that urban/suburban and rural populations comprise two distinct genetic clusters. Comparison of FST values at different hierarchical scales revealed drift as an important force of population differentiation. Redundancy analyses revealed that genetic structure was strongly affected by both spatial variation and level of urbanization. The results shown here can be used as baseline information for future genetic monitoring programmes and provide additional insights into contemporary house sparrow dynamics along urbanization gradients. PMID:22588131
Balmori, Alfonso; Hallberg, Orjan
During recent decades, there has been a marked decline of the house sparrow (Passer domesticus) population in the United Kingdom and in several western European countries. The aims of this study were to determine whether the population is also declining in Spain and to evaluate the hypothesis that electromagnetic radiation (microwaves) from phone antennae is correlated with the decline in the sparrow population. Between October 2002 and May 2006, point transect sampling was performed at 30 points during 40 visits to Valladolid, Spain. At each point, we carried out counts of sparrows and measured the mean electric field strength (radiofrequencies and microwaves: 1 MHz-3 GHz range). Significant declines (P = 0.0037) were observed in the mean bird density over time, and significantly low bird density was observed in areas with high electric field strength. The logarithmic regression of the mean bird density vs. field strength groups (considering field strength in 0.1 V/m increments) was R = -0.87 (P = 0.0001). The results of this article support the hypothesis that electromagnetic signals are associated with the observed decline in the sparrow population. We conclude that electromagnetic pollution may be responsible, either by itself or in combination with other factors, for the observed decline of the species in European cities during recent years. The appearently strong dependence between bird density and field strength according to this work could be used for a more controlled study to test the hypothesis.
Caviedes-Vidal, E; Karasov, W H
Six decades of studies have speculated that digestive capacity might limit avian growth rate or that developmental changes in the gut might determine developmental changes in digestive efficiency. However, there are no studies on digestive enzymes during avian development, except for studies on mainly domestic birds that exhibit the precocial mode of development. We studied alimentary organ masses, intestinal enzyme activities (sucrase, maltase, isomaltase, aminopeptidase-N), and pancreatic enzyme activities (amylase, trypsin, chymotrypsin) during development of a wild passerine bird exhibiting the altricial mode of development. Wild nestling house sparrows were studied immediately after removal from the nest (days 0, 3, 6 of age; day 0=hatch), whereas captives were raised in the laboratory beginning day 3 on a formulated casein/starch-based diet until fledging age (after day 12). Digestive biochemistry was dynamic. Tissue-specific activities of some digestive enzymes continued to increase through fledging, by >10 times in some cases (e.g., sucrase and maltase in midintestine). Total pancreatic amylase activity increased 100 times between hatch and day 12 through a combination of increases in tissue-specific activity and pancreas mass. House sparrows differ from poultry, in whom after about 2 wk of age the specific activity of intestinal and pancreatic digestive enzymes is generally constant or declines during development. The data on intestinal and pancreatic enzymes help explain why digestive efficiency of nestling house sparrows improves with age, and the data seem consistent with the idea that digestive capacity might limit feeding rate and hence growth rate.
Cousseau, L; Husemann, M; Foppen, R; Vangestel, C; Lens, L
Dutch house sparrow (Passer domesticus) densities dropped by nearly 50% since the early 1980s, and similar collapses in population sizes have been reported across Europe. Whether, and to what extent, such relatively recent demographic changes are accompanied by concomitant shifts in the genetic population structure of this species needs further investigation. Therefore, we here explore temporal shifts in genetic diversity, genetic structure and effective sizes of seven Dutch house sparrow populations. To allow the most powerful statistical inference, historical populations were resampled at identical locations and each individual bird was genotyped using nine polymorphic microsatellites. Although the demographic history was not reflected by a reduction in genetic diversity, levels of genetic differentiation increased over time, and the original, panmictic population (inferred from the museum samples) diverged into two distinct genetic clusters. Reductions in census size were supported by a substantial reduction in effective population size, although to a smaller extent. As most studies of contemporary house sparrow populations have been unable to identify genetic signatures of recent population declines, results of this study underpin the importance of longitudinal genetic surveys to unravel cryptic genetic patterns.
Martin, Lynn B; Hasselquist, Dennis; Wikelski, Martin
The evidence for a relationship between life history and immune defense is equivocal, although the basic premise is intuitively appealing: animals that live short lives and reproduce early and rapidly should not waste resources on defenses they might never use. One possible reason for a lack of strong support for this hypothesis could be the inherent complexity of the vertebrate immune system. Indeed, different components of the vertebrate immune system vary in their relative costs and benefits, and therefore only some defenses may complement variation in species' life history. To address this hypothesis, we compared multiple types of immune activity between two populations of house sparrows (Passer domesticus) with distinct life histories, one from Colon, Panama, which lay small clutches over an extended breeding season (i.e., slow-living) and the other from Princeton, New Jersey, which lay larger clutches in a smaller window of time (i.e., fast-living). We expected (a) that more costly types of immune defenses would be stronger in the slow-living sparrows and (2) that the slow-living sparrows would show a greater increase in whole-body energy expenditure after immune challenge compared to their fast-living counterparts. We found that secondary antibody response to a novel antigen was more rapid and energetic investment in immune activity was greater in slow-living sparrows. However, cell-mediated immune activity was more robust in fast-living sparrows, and other measures of defense were not different between populations. These results provide partial support for a relationship between life history and immune defense in this species, but they also indicate that this relationship is not clear-cut. Further study is necessary to identify the influence of other factors, particular pathogen environment during development, on the architecture of the immune system of wild animals.
Martin, L B; Han, P; Kwong, J; Hau, M
Many vertebrates show seasonality in immune defenses, perhaps because of trade-offs with other physiological processes. Trade-offs between reproduction and immune function have been well studied, but how other life cycle events such as molt affect immune function remains unclear. Here, we hypothesize that one possible explanation is that accumulative dissociated processes (e.g., resource deficits generated over the long term by physiological processes) can have delayed effects on immune activity. To test this hypothesis, we compared cutaneous immune responses in groups of captive female house sparrows (Passer domesticus) photoperiodically induced into six different life cycle stages. We predicted that if delayed trade-offs occur, immune activity would be reduced after a mature life state was reached (e.g., postmolt) and not just compromised when other tissues were actively growing (instantaneous trade-off). We found evidence for both types of trade-offs: immune responses were weakest in sparrows that had just completed postnuptial molt, but they were also weak in birds growing reproductive tissues or feathers. Birds in mature reproductive states or light molt had strong immune responses comparable with birds in a nonbreeding/nonmolting state. Altogether, our results indicate that immune activity in female house sparrows can be influenced by both instantaneous and delayed trade-offs.
Billing, Anna M; Lee, Aline M; Skjelseth, Sigrun; Borg, Asa A; Hale, Matthew C; Slate, Jon; Pärn, Henrik; Ringsby, Thor H; Saether, Bernt-Erik; Jensen, Henrik
Inbreeding is common in small and threatened populations and often has a negative effect on individual fitness and genetic diversity. Thus, inbreeding can be an important factor affecting the persistence of small populations. In this study, we investigated the effects of inbreeding on fitness in a small, wild population of house sparrows (Passer domesticus) on the island of Aldra, Norway. The population was founded in 1998 by four individuals (one female and three males). After the founder event, the adult population rapidly increased to about 30 individuals in 2001. At the same time, the mean inbreeding coefficient among adults increased from 0 to 0.04 by 2001 and thereafter fluctuated between 0.06 and 0.10, indicating a highly inbred population. We found a negative effect of inbreeding on lifetime reproductive success, which seemed to be mainly due to an effect of inbreeding on annual reproductive success. This resulted in selection against inbred females. However, the negative effect of inbreeding was less strong in males, suggesting that selection against inbred individuals is at least partly sex specific. To examine whether individuals avoided breeding with close relatives, we compared observed inbreeding and kinship coefficients in the population with those obtained from simulations of random mating. We found no significant differences between the two, indicating weak or absent inbreeding avoidance. We conclude that there was inbreeding depression in our population. Despite this, birds did not seem to actively avoid mating with close relatives, perhaps as a consequence of constraints on mating possibilities in such a small population.
Jimenez, Ana G; Williams, Joseph B
Given that our climate is rapidly changing, Physiological Ecologists have the critical task of identifying characteristics of species that make them either resilient or susceptible to changes in their natural air temperature regime. Because climate change models suggest that heat events will become more common, and in some places more extreme, it is important to consider how extreme heat events might affect the physiology of a species. The implications of more frequent heat wave events for birds have only recently begun to be addressed, however, the impact of these events on the cellular physiology of a species is difficult to assess. We have developed a novel approach using dermal fibroblasts to explore how short-term thermal stress at the whole animal level might affect cellular rates of metabolism. House sparrows, Passer domesticus were separated into a "control group" and a "heat shocked" group, the latter acclimated to 43°C for 24h. We determined the plasticity of cellular thermal responses by assigning a "recovery group" that was heat shocked as above, but then returned to room temperature for 24h. Primary dermal fibroblasts were grown from skin of all treatment groups and the pectoralis muscle was collected. We found that glycolysis (ECAR) and oxygen consumption rates (OCR), measured using a Seahorse XF 96 analyzer, were significantly higher in the fibroblasts from the heat shocked group of House sparrows compared with their control counterparts. Additionally, muscle fiber diameters decreased and, in turn, Na(+)-K(+)-ATPase maximal activity in the muscle significantly increased in heat shocked sparrows compared with birds in the control group. All of these physiological alterations due to short-term heat exposure were reversible within 24h of recovery at room temperature. These results show that acute exposure to heat stress significantly alters the cellular physiology of sparrows, but that this species is plastic enough to recover from such a thermal
Everaert, Joris; Bauwens, Dirk
A possible effect of long-term exposure to low-intensity electromagnetic radiation from mobile phone (GSM) base stations on the number of House Sparrows during the breeding season was studied in six residential districts in Belgium. We sampled 150 point locations within the 6 areas to examine small-scale geographic variation in the number of House Sparrow males and the strength of electromagnetic radiation from base stations. Spatial variation in the number of House Sparrow males was negatively and highly significantly related to the strength of electric fields from both the 900 and 1800 MHz downlink frequency bands and from the sum of these bands (Chi(2)-tests and AIC-criteria, P<0.001). This negative relationship was highly similar within each of the six study areas, despite differences among areas in both the number of birds and radiation levels. Thus, our data show that fewer House Sparrow males were seen at locations with relatively high electric field strength values of GSM base stations and therefore support the notion that long-term exposure to higher levels of radiation negatively affects the abundance or behavior of House Sparrows in the wild.
Schrey, A W; Grispo, M; Awad, M; Cook, M B; McCoy, E D; Mushinsky, H R; Albayrak, T; Bensch, S; Burke, T; Butler, L K; Dor, R; Fokidis, H B; Jensen, H; Imboma, T; Kessler-Rios, M M; Marzal, A; Stewart, I R K; Westerdahl, H; Westneat, D F; Zehtindjiev, P; Martin, L B
Introduced species offer unique opportunities to study evolution in new environments, and some provide opportunities for understanding the mechanisms underlying macroecological patterns. We sought to determine how introduction history impacted genetic diversity and differentiation of the house sparrow (Passer domesticus), one of the most broadly distributed bird species. We screened eight microsatellite loci in 316 individuals from 16 locations in the native and introduced ranges. Significant population structure occurred between native than introduced house sparrows. Introduced house sparrows were distinguished into one North American group and a highly differentiated Kenyan group. Genetic differentiation estimates identified a high magnitude of differentiation between Kenya and all other populations, but demonstrated that European and North American samples were differentiated too. Our results support previous claims that introduced North American populations likely had few source populations, and indicate house sparrows established populations after introduction. Genetic diversity also differed among native, introduced North American, and Kenyan populations with Kenyan birds being least diverse. In some cases, house sparrow populations appeared to maintain or recover genetic diversity relatively rapidly after range expansion (<50 years; Mexico and Panama), but in others (Kenya) the effect of introduction persisted over the same period. In both native and introduced populations, genetic diversity exhibited large-scale geographic patterns, increasing towards the equator. Such patterns of genetic diversity are concordant with two previously described models of genetic diversity, the latitudinal model and the species diversity model.
Fassbinder-Orth, Carol A; Barak, Virginia A; Rainwater, Ellecia L; Altrichter, Ashley M
Birds serve as reservoirs for at least 10 arthropod-borne viruses, yet specific immune responses of birds to arboviral infections are relatively unknown. Here, adult House Sparrows were inoculated with an arboviral alphavirus, Buggy Creek virus (BCRV), or saline, and euthanized between 1 and 3 days postinoculation. Virological dynamics and gene expression dynamics were investigated. Birds did not develop viremia postinoculation, but cytopathic virus was found in the skeletal muscle and spleen of birds 1 and 3 days postinoculation (DPI). Viral RNA was detected in the blood of BCRV-infected birds 1 and 2 DPI, in oral swabs 1-3 DPI, and in brain, heart, skeletal muscle, and spleen 1-3 DPI. Multiple genes were significantly upregulated following BCRV infection, including pattern recognition receptors (TLR7, TLR15, RIG-1), type I interferon (IFN-α), and type II interferon (IFN-γ). This is the first study to report avian immunological gene expression profiles following an arboviral infection.
Romero, L Michael; Cyr, Nicole E; Romero, Robin C
Avian corticosterone (CORT) concentrations vary seasonally for many species, but most studies examined species from extreme environments or from only a few times of the year. It is unclear how general a phenomenon this is. We examined both baseline and stress-induced CORT from house sparrows (Passer domesticus) in two habitats-Massachusetts, similar to their ancestral habitat; and New Mexico, a semi-arid desert where the house sparrow only thrives as an obligate human commensal. We captured both males and females during four times of the year-Spring (when the male cloacal protuberance indicated birds were in breeding condition), Fall, Winter, and in the late summer when birds were undergoing a prebasic molt. Birds were heaviest and had the longest wing chord lengths in the Fall at both sites and Massachusetts birds were approximately 10% heavier than New Mexico birds. House sparrows also showed a seasonal variation in the amount of fat stores, but the seasonal pattern differed. Massachusetts birds were fatter overall and showed the most fat during Fall and Winter, whereas New Mexico birds showed the most fat in the Spring. Both baseline and stress-induced total CORT did not differ between sexes or sites, with the exceptions of baseline CORT in the Fall and stress-induced CORT in the Spring being elevated in Massachusetts males. There was a distinct seasonal pattern at both sites, however, with total CORT being highest in the Spring and Winter and lowest during Fall and molt. This seasonal pattern was mirrored in corticosterone binding globulin (CBG) capacities, and when free CORT was estimated, the seasonal pattern disappeared. Stress-induced free CORT, however, was higher in Massachusetts males and females during the Fall and Winter, suggesting a potential differential response to stress associated with commensalism.
Martin, Lynn B; Kidd, Laura; Liebl, Andrea L; Coon, Courtney A C
Some species thrive in captivity but others exhibit extensive psychological and physiological deficits, which can be a challenge to animal husbandry and conservation as well as wild immunology. Here, we investigated whether captivity duration impacted the regulation of a key innate immune response, inflammation, of a common wild bird species, the house sparrow (Passer domesticus). Inflammation is one of the most commonly induced and fast-acting immune responses animals mount upon exposure to a parasite. However, attenuation and resolution of inflammatory responses are partly coordinated by glucocorticoid hormones, hormones that can be disregulated in captivity. Here, we tested whether captivity duration alters corticosterone regulation and hence the inflammatory response by comparing the following responses to lipopolysaccharide (LPS; a Gram-negative bacteria component that induces inflammation) of birds caught wild and injected immediately versus those held for 2 or 4 weeks in standard conditions: (1) the magnitude of leukocyte immune gene expression [the cytokines, interleukin 1β and interleukin 6, and Toll-like receptor 4 (TLR4)], (2) the rate of clearance of endotoxin, and (3) the release of corticosterone (CORT) in response to endotoxin (LPS). We predicted that captivity duration would increase baseline CORT and thus suppress gene expression and endotoxin clearance rate. However, our predictions were not supported: TLR4 expression increased with time in captivity irrespective of LPS, and cytokine expression to LPS was stronger the longer birds remained captive. Baseline CORT was not affected by captivity duration, but CORT release post-LPS occurred only in wild birds. Lastly, sparrows held captive for 4 weeks maintained significantly higher levels of circulating endotoxin than other groups, perhaps due to leakage of microbes from the gut, but exogenous LPS did not increase circulating levels over the time scale samples were collected. Altogether, captivity
Kempenaers, Bart; Dale, James
The honesty of ornamental signals of quality is often argued to be enforced via costs associated with testosterone. It is still poorly understood, however, how seasonal variation of testosterone within individuals is related to the timing and extent of ornament development. Here, we studied inter- and intra-individual variability of plasma testosterone levels in a population of 150 captive male house sparrows (Passer domesticus) through the course of a full year. We further analyzed the relationship between plasma testosterone levels and two sexually dimorphic ornaments: badge size and bill coloration. Also, because of a known negative relation between molt and circulating testosterone levels, we analyzed the relationship between ornamentation and molt status during the fall. We found that testosterone levels increased towards the breeding season and decreased before the onset of annual molt. However, within individuals, relative testosterone titers demonstrated low repeatability between seasons. Plasma testosterone levels were not correlated with badge size in any season but were correlated strongly with bill coloration during all periods, except the breeding season when variation in bill color was low. Finally, we found that bill coloration strongly correlated with molt status during fall. Our results indicate that bill coloration, not badge size, is the best ornamental indicator of a “running average” of male testosterone in house sparrows and therefore the best potential indicator of qualities and/or behavioral strategies associated with testosterone. PMID:20730125
Brommer, J E; Hanski, I K; Kekkonen, J; Väisänen, R A
Bergmann's rule predicts that individuals are larger in more poleward populations and that this size gradient has an adaptive basis. Hence, phenotypic divergence in size traits between populations (PST ) is expected to exceed the level of divergence by drift alone (FST ). We measured 16 skeletal traits, body mass and wing length in 409 male and 296 female house sparrows Passer domesticus sampled in 12 populations throughout Finland, where the species has its northernmost European distributional margin. Morphometric differentiation across populations (PST ) was compared with differentiation in 13 microsatellites (FST ). We find that twelve traits phenotypically diverged more than FST in both sexes, and an additional two traits diverged in males. The phenotypic divergence exceeded FST in several traits to such a degree that findings were robust also to strong between-population environmental effects. Divergence was particularly strong in dimensions of the bill, making it a strong candidate for the study of adaptive molecular genetic divergence. Divergent traits increased in size in more northern populations. We conclude that house sparrows show evidence of an adaptive latitudinal size gradient consistent with Bergmann's rule on the modest spatial scale of ca. 600 km.
Coon, Courtney A C; Warne, Robin W; Martin, Lynn B
Pathogens may induce different immune responses in hosts contingent on pathogen characteristics, host characteristics, or interactions between the two. We investigated whether the broadly effective acute-phase response (APR), a whole body immune response that occurs in response to constitutive immune receptor activation and includes fever, secretion of immune peptides, and sickness behaviors such as anorexia and lethargy, varies with pathogen identity in the house sparrow (Passer domesticus). Birds were challenged with a subcutaneous injection of either a glucan at 0.7 mg/kg (to simulate fungal infection), a synthetic double-stranded RNA at 25 mg/kg (to simulate viral infection), or LPS at 1 mg/kg (to simulate a gram-negative bacterial infection), and then body mass, core body temperature changes, sickness behaviors, and secretion of an acute-phase protein, haptoglobin, were compared. Despite using what are moderate-to-high pyrogen doses for other vertebrates, only house sparrows challenged with LPS showed measurable APRs. Febrile, behavioral, and physiological responses to fungal and viral mimetics had minimal effects.
Greenman, Chris G; Martin, Lynn B; Hau, Michaela
The immune system requires energetic and nutritional resources to optimally defend organisms against pathogens and parasites. Because resources are typically limited, immune function may require a trade-off with other physiologically demanding activities. Here, we examined whether photoperiodically induced seasonal states (breeding, molting, or nonbreeding) affected the cutaneous immune response of captive male house sparrows (Passer domesticus). To assess immune function in these birds, we injected the mitogen phytohemagglutinin (PHA) into the patagium and measured the resulting wing web swelling. Molting and nonbreeding birds had similar immune responses to PHA injection. However, males in a breeding state showed lower immune responses than both molting and nonbreeding birds even though they did not actually breed. We tested whether this decrease in the PHA swelling response in birds in a breeding state was due to elevated plasma concentrations of testosterone (T) by administering T to birds in a nonbreeding state. Contrary to some evidence in the literature, T did not suppress the response to PHA in house sparrows. Our data show that passerine birds show seasonal modulation in immune function, even in benign environmental conditions. However, even though T is often cited as a strong immunosuppressant, it is not fully responsible for this seasonal modulation.
Liker, András; Bókony, Veronika
Group living offers well-known benefits to animals, such as better predator avoidance and increased foraging success. An important additional, but so far neglected, advantage is that groups may cope more effectively with unfamiliar situations through faster innovations of new solutions by some group members. We tested this hypothesis experimentally by presenting a new foraging task of opening a familiar feeder in an unfamiliar way to house sparrows in small and large groups (2 versus 6 birds). Group size had strong effects on problem solving: sparrows performed 4 times more and 11 times faster openings in large than in small groups, and all members of large groups profited by getting food sooner (7 times on average). Independently from group size, urban groups were more successful than rural groups. The disproportionately higher success in large groups was not a mere consequence of higher number of attempts, but was also related to a higher effectiveness of problem solving (3 times higher proportion of successful birds). The analyses of the birds' behavior suggest that the latter was not explained by either reduced investment in antipredator vigilance or reduced neophobia in large groups. Instead, larger groups may contain more diverse individuals with different skills and experiences, which may increase the chance of solving the task by some group members. Increased success in problem solving may promote group living in animals and may help them to adapt quickly to new situations in rapidly-changing environments.
Liker, András; Bókony, Veronika
Group living offers well-known benefits to animals, such as better predator avoidance and increased foraging success. An important additional, but so far neglected, advantage is that groups may cope more effectively with unfamiliar situations through faster innovations of new solutions by some group members. We tested this hypothesis experimentally by presenting a new foraging task of opening a familiar feeder in an unfamiliar way to house sparrows in small and large groups (2 versus 6 birds). Group size had strong effects on problem solving: sparrows performed 4 times more and 11 times faster openings in large than in small groups, and all members of large groups profited by getting food sooner (7 times on average). Independently from group size, urban groups were more successful than rural groups. The disproportionately higher success in large groups was not a mere consequence of higher number of attempts, but was also related to a higher effectiveness of problem solving (3 times higher proportion of successful birds). The analyses of the birds' behavior suggest that the latter was not explained by either reduced investment in antipredator vigilance or reduced neophobia in large groups. Instead, larger groups may contain more diverse individuals with different skills and experiences, which may increase the chance of solving the task by some group members. Increased success in problem solving may promote group living in animals and may help them to adapt quickly to new situations in rapidly-changing environments. PMID:19416834
Martin, Lynn B; Scheuerlein, Alex; Wikelski, Martin
The activation of an immune response is beneficial for organisms but may also have costs that affect fitness. Documented immune costs include those associated with acquisition of special nutrients, as well as immunopathology or autoimmunity. Here, we test whether an experimental induction of the immune system with a non-pathological stimulant can elevate energy turnover in passerine birds. We injected phytohaemagglutinin (PHA), a commonly used mitogen that activates the cell-mediated immune response, into the wing web of house sparrows, Passer domesticus. We then examined energetic costs resulting from this immune activity and related those costs to other physiological activities. We found that PHA injection significantly elevated resting metabolic rate (RMR) of challenged sparrows relative to saline controls. We calculated the total cost of this immune activity to be ca. 4.20 kJ per day (29% RMR), which is equivalent to the cost of production of half of an egg (8.23 kJ egg(-1)) in this species. We suggest that immune activity in wild passerines increases energy expenditure, which in turn may influence important life-history characteristics such as clutch size, timing of breeding or the scheduling of moult.
Abdoli, Amir; Dalimi, Abdolhossein; Soltanghoraee, Haleh; Ghaffarifar, Fatemeh
Toxoplasma gondii is one of the most common zoonotic parasitic diseases in human and warm-blooded animals worldwide. Birds are one of important intermediate hosts of T. gondii. The aim of this study is molecular detection of T. gondii in the house sparrow by LAMP and PCR methods in Tehran, Iran. A total 200 sparrows were captured in different regions of Tehran. DNA was extracted from tissue samples of each sparrow. LAMP and conventional PCR assays were carried out with a set of primers to detect the 529 bp fragment of T. gondii. LAMP and PCR were detected T. gondii from 17 (8.5 %) and 15 (7.5 %) of 200 sparrows respectively. These results indicated that sensitivity of LAMP was higher than conventional PCR. In our knowledge, this study is the first report of detection of T. gondii by LAMP method in bird hosts. Also, these findings provided an insight into epidemiological pattern of T. gondii infection in sparrow in Iran.
Liebl, Andrea L; Martin, Lynn B
As ranges expand, individuals encounter different environments at the periphery than at the centre of the range. Previously, we have shown that glucocorticoids (GCs) vary with range expansion: individuals at the range edge release more GCs in response to restraint. Here, we measured hippocampal mRNA expression of GC receptors (mineralocorticoid, MR and glucocorticoid, GR) in eight house sparrow (Passer domesticus) populations varying in age. We found that individuals closest to the range edge had the lowest expression of MR relative to GR; in all likelihood, this relationship was driven by a marginal reduction of MR mRNA at the range edge. Reduced MR (relative to GR) might allow enhanced GC binding to GR, the lower affinity receptor that would enhance a rapid physiological and behavioural response to stressors. The insights gained from this study are not only enlightening to introduced species, but may also predict how certain species will react as their ranges shift owing to anthropogenic changes.
Bókony, Veronika; Kulcsár, Anna; Tóth, Zoltán; Liker, András
Urbanization creates novel environments for wild animals where selection pressures may differ drastically from those in natural habitats. Adaptation to urban life involves changes in various traits, including behavior. Behavioral traits often vary consistently among individuals, and these so-called personality traits can be correlated with each other, forming behavioral syndromes. Despite their adaptive significance and potential to act as constraints, little is known about the role of animal personality and behavioral syndromes in animals' adaptation to urban habitats. In this study we tested whether differently urbanized habitats select for different personalities and behavioral syndromes by altering the population mean, inter-individual variability, and correlations of personality traits. We captured house sparrows (Passer domesticus) from four different populations along the gradient of urbanization and assessed their behavior in standardized test situations. We found individual consistency in neophobia, risk taking, and activity, constituting three personality axes. On the one hand, urbanization did not consistently affect the mean and variance of these traits, although there were significant differences between some of the populations in food neophobia and risk taking (both in means and variances). On the other hand, both urban and rural birds exhibited a behavioral syndrome including object neophobia, risk taking and activity, whereas food neophobia was part of the syndrome only in rural birds. These results indicate that there are population differences in certain aspects of personality in house sparrows, some of which may be related to habitat urbanization. Our findings suggest that urbanization and/or other population-level habitat differences may not only influence the expression of personality traits but also alter their inter-individual variability and the relationships among them, changing the structure of behavioral syndromes.
Bókony, Veronika; Kulcsár, Anna; Tóth, Zoltán; Liker, András
Urbanization creates novel environments for wild animals where selection pressures may differ drastically from those in natural habitats. Adaptation to urban life involves changes in various traits, including behavior. Behavioral traits often vary consistently among individuals, and these so-called personality traits can be correlated with each other, forming behavioral syndromes. Despite their adaptive significance and potential to act as constraints, little is known about the role of animal personality and behavioral syndromes in animals' adaptation to urban habitats. In this study we tested whether differently urbanized habitats select for different personalities and behavioral syndromes by altering the population mean, inter-individual variability, and correlations of personality traits. We captured house sparrows (Passer domesticus) from four different populations along the gradient of urbanization and assessed their behavior in standardized test situations. We found individual consistency in neophobia, risk taking, and activity, constituting three personality axes. On the one hand, urbanization did not consistently affect the mean and variance of these traits, although there were significant differences between some of the populations in food neophobia and risk taking (both in means and variances). On the other hand, both urban and rural birds exhibited a behavioral syndrome including object neophobia, risk taking and activity, whereas food neophobia was part of the syndrome only in rural birds. These results indicate that there are population differences in certain aspects of personality in house sparrows, some of which may be related to habitat urbanization. Our findings suggest that urbanization and/or other population-level habitat differences may not only influence the expression of personality traits but also alter their inter-individual variability and the relationships among them, changing the structure of behavioral syndromes. PMID:22574204
Treen, Gillian D; Hobson, Keith A; Marchant, Tracy A; Bortolotti, Gary R
Ecologists frequently use physiological tools to understand how organisms cope with their surroundings but rarely at macroecological scales. This study describes spatial variation in corticosterone (CORT) levels in feathers of invasive house sparrows (Passer domesticus) across their range in Mexico and evaluates CORT–climate relationships with a focus on temperature and precipitation. Samples were collected from 49 sites across Mexico. Feather CORT (CORTf) was measured using methanol-based extraction and radioimmunoassay. Relationships between CORTf and spatial and climate variables were examined using simple linear regressions. Ordination was used on climate data, CORTf was plotted against the resulting axes, and univariate regression trees were used to identify important predictors of CORTf. Universal kriging interpolation was used to illustrate spatial variation in CORTf across Mexico. Correlations with ordination axes showed that high CORTf was associated with low precipitation during the rainy season and low dry season temperatures. Specifically, CORTf was negatively related to May precipitation and January and July minimum temperatures, and positively related to April deuterium excess and June minimum temperatures. CORTf was higher in second-year birds compared to after-hatch years and after-second years. House sparrows had higher CORTf levels in the hot, dry, north-central region of Mexico, and CORTf was negatively related to temperature and precipitation. House sparrows molt primarily from August–September but climate conditions throughout the year were important predictors of CORTf, suggesting that conditions outside of molt can carry over to influence energetics during feather growth. These data suggest that dry conditions are challenging for house sparrows in Mexico, supporting previous work showing that precipitation is an important predictor of broad-scale CORT variation. This work highlights the utility of CORTf for evaluating the influence of
Arens, Jeremy R; Cooper, Sheldon J
Passerines that overwinter in temperate climates undergo seasonal acclimatization that is characterized by metabolic adjustments that may include increased basal metabolic rate (BMR) and cold-induced summit metabolism (M(sum)) in winter relative to summer. Metabolic changes must be supported by equivalent changes in oxygen transport. While much is known about the morphology of the avian respiratory system, little is known about respiratory function under extreme cold stress. We examined seasonal variation in BMR, M(sum), and ventilation in seasonally acclimatized house sparrows from Wisconsin. BMR and M(sum) increased significantly in winter compared with summer. In winter, BMR increased 64%, and M(sum) increased 29% over summer values. The 64% increase in winter BMR is the highest recorded for birds. Metabolic expansibility (M(sum)/BMR) was 9.0 in summer and 6.9 in winter birds. The metabolic expansibility of 9.0 in summer is the highest yet recorded for birds. Ventilatory accommodation under helox cold stress was due to changes in breathing frequency (f), tidal volume, and oxygen extraction efficiency in both seasons. However, the only significant difference between summer and winter ventilation measures in helox cold stress was f. Mean f in helox cold stress for winter birds was 1.23 times summer values.
Pap, Péter László; Adam, Costică; Vágási, Csongor István; Benkő, Zoltán; Vincze, Orsolya
Female-biased sex ratio is a common phenomenon in parasites; however, the cause and consequence of the skewed sex ratio is less well known. Here, we studied the difference in sex ratio, a possible mechanism responsible for the development of unbalanced proportion of sexes and its consequences on sexual size dimorphism, between 3 louse species parasitizing the house sparrow Passer domesticus. Philopterus fringillae was more prevalent than Sturnidoecus refractariolus and Brueelia cyclothorax. As expected, the most common species, which was probably least affected by isolation and, hence, inbreeding, was characterized by a balanced sex ratio, whereas the 2 other species with low prevalence were significantly more female biased than expected on the basis of the local mate competition hypothesis. Further, in support of this notion, we found that P. fringillae infrapopulation size significantly, and positively, correlated with the sex ratio. Finally, we found significant differences in sexual dimorphism among the 3 louse species and, as expected, the relative size of males was smallest in species with a more female-biased sex ratio.
Killpack, Tess L; Carrel, Elijah; Karasov, William H
Food limitation is a common ecological scenario for nestling altricial birds, and reductions in growth and maintenance have been observed in resource-limited nestlings. Substantial development of the immune system occurs during the nestling period, yet the resource dependence of this immune development is understudied. We examined constitutive immune system development as well as acute-phase responses to lipopolysaccharide (LPS) injection after 48 h of food restriction in house sparrows at 7 and 13 d posthatch. We also examined nestlings that were restricted early (5-7 d) but refed and tested at 13 d posthatch to determine whether altered immune function and growth early in the nestling period were recovered upon return to adequate resource supply. Induced acute-phase protein response was reduced in food-restricted birds, yet no lasting reductions in acute-phase protein levels were observed in previously restricted nestlings that were challenged with LPS after refeeding. Food restriction did not significantly impact constitutive levels of complement-mediated lysis or circulating IgY antibodies. As a comparator to immune measures, we found that organ and tarsus size, as well as muscle size and citrate synthase enzyme activity (an index of muscle cellular aerobic capacity), were significantly reduced in food-restricted nestlings. Reductions in flight muscle mass and function persisted in birds refed after early food restriction, which may have contributed to persistent body temperature reductions observed in refed birds.
Loiseau, Claire; Zoorob, Rima; Robert, Alexandre; Chastel, Olivier; Julliard, Romain; Sorci, Gabriele
Antagonistic coevolution between hosts and parasites has been proposed as a mechanism maintaining genetic diversity in both host and parasite populations. In particular, the high level of genetic diversity usually observed at the major histocompatibility complex (MHC) is generally thought to be maintained by parasite-driven selection. Among the possible ways through which parasites can maintain MHC diversity, diversifying selection has received relatively less attention. This hypothesis is based on the idea that parasites exert spatially variable selection pressures because of heterogeneity in parasite genetic structure, abundance or virulence. Variable selection pressures should select for different host allelic lineages resulting in population-specific associations between MHC alleles and risk of infection. In this study, we took advantage of a large survey of avian malaria in 13 populations of the house sparrow (Passer domesticus) to test this hypothesis. We found that (i) several MHC alleles were either associated with increased or decreased risk to be infected with Plasmodium relictum, (ii) the effects were population specific, and (iii) some alleles had antagonistic effects across populations. Overall, these results support the hypothesis that diversifying selection in space can maintain MHC variation and suggest a pattern of local adaptation where MHC alleles are selected at the local host population level.
Funes, Samanta Celeste; Filippa, Verónica Palmira; Cid, Fabricio Damián; Mohamed, Fabián; Caviedes-Vidal, Enrique; Chediack, Juan Gabriel
In birds and mammals the metabolic response to fasting has been studied and can be characterized by three consecutive phases reflecting metabolic and physiological adjustments. An effective way to minimize energy expenditure during food scarcity is to decrease the mass of the organs. As the digestive system is metabolically expensive to maintain, the small intestine and the liver are the most affected organs. We evaluated the effects of phase III starvation on the mass of the different organs and histological parameters on house sparrows, a small non-migrant bird. In a short period of time (34 h) we observed a larger reduction in the digestive organ mass when compared to the mass of the body and non-alimentary tissues. Furthermore, the intestinal mass was proportionally more reduced than its length and nominal surface area. A reduction on the intestinal mucosal layer also resulted in a shortening of villus (length and thickness) and crypt depth. Moreover, the morphology of the enterocytes changed from cylindrical to cubical, suggesting that the surface exposed to the lumen was conserved. This may indicate an adaptive response to the moment of refeeding. The nominal surface area/body mass remained constant in both groups and several histological parameters were reduced, suggesting that starving induces the atrophy of the small intestine. However, the goblet cells were conserved after fasting indicating a protective tendency.
Bichet, Coraline; Moodley, Yoshan; Penn, Dustin J; Sorci, Gabriele; Garnier, Stéphane
Small and isolated populations usually exhibit low levels of genetic variability, and thus, they are expected to have a lower capacity to adapt to changes in environmental conditions, such as exposure to pathogens and parasites. Comparing the genetic variability of selectively neutral versus functional loci allows one to assess the evolutionary history of populations and their future evolutionary potential. The genes of the major histocompatibility complex (MHC) control immune recognition of parasites, and their unusually high diversity is genes which is likely driven by parasite-mediated balancing selection. Here, we examined diversity and differentiation of neutral microsatellite loci and functional MHC class I genes in house sparrows (Passer domesticus), living in six insular and six mainland populations, and we aimed to determine whether their diversity or differentiation correlates with the diversity and the prevalence of infection of hemosporidian parasites. We found that island bird populations tended to have lower neutral genetic variability, whereas MHC variability gene was similar between island and mainland populations. Similarly, island populations tended to show greater genetic differentiation than mainland populations, especially at microsatellite markers. The maintenance of MHC genetic diversity and its less marked structure in the island populations could be attributed to balancing-selection. The greater MHC differentiation among populations was negatively correlated with similarity in blood parasites (prevalence and diversity of parasite strains) between populations. Even at low prevalence and small geographical scale, haemosporidian parasites might contribute to structure the variability of immune genes among populations of hosts. PMID:25937907
Kumar, Vinod; Gwinner, Eberhard
In many birds periodic melatonin secretion by the pineal organ is essential for the high-amplitude self-sustained output of the circadian pacemaker, and thus for the persistence of rhythmicity in 24 h oscillations controlled by it. The elimination of the pineal melatonin rhythm, or a reduction of its amplitude, renders the circadian pacemaker a less self-sustained, often highly damped, oscillatory system. A reduction in the degree of self-sustainment of a rhythm should not only increase its range of entrainment but also shorten the resynchronization times following phase-shifts of the zeitgeber. This hypothesis has not yet been directly tested. We therefore carried out the present study in which house sparrows (Passer domesticus) were subjected to both 6-h advance and 6-h delay phase-shifts of the light-dark cycle before and after the pinealectomy, and the rhythms in locomotion and feeding were recorded. The results indicate that following the delay, but not the advance, phase shift, resynchronization times were significantly shorter after pinealectomy. The dependence of resynchronization times on the presence or absence of the pineal organ is not only of theoretical interest but might also be of functional significance in the natural life of birds. A reduction or elimination of the amplitude of the melatonin secretion rhythm by the pineal organ might be responsible for faster adjustment to changes in zeitgeber conditions in nature.
Katsnelson, Edith; Motro, Uzi; Feldman, Marcus W; Lotem, Arnon
Social foragers can use either a 'producer' strategy, which involves searching for food, or a 'scrounger' strategy, which involves joining others' food discoveries. While producers rely on personal information and past experience, we may ask whether the tendency to forage as a producer is related to being a better learner. To answer this question, we hand-raised house sparrow (Passer domesticus) nestlings that upon independence were given an individual-learning task that required them to associate colour signal and food presence. Following the testing phase, all fledglings were released into a shared aviary, and their social-foraging tendencies were measured. We found a significant positive correlation between individual's performance in the individual-learning task and subsequent tendency to use searching (producing) behaviour. Individual-learning score was negatively correlated with initial fear of the test apparatus and with body weight. However, the correlation between individual learning and searching remained significant after controlling for these variables. Since it was measured before the birds entered a social group, individual-learning ability could not be the outcome of being a producer. However, the two traits may be initially associated, or individual learning could facilitate producing behaviour. To our knowledge, this is the first evidence that associates individual-learning abilities with social-foraging strategies in animal groups.
Lima, Marcos R; Macedo, Regina H F; Martins, Thaís L F; Schrey, Aaron W; Martin, Lynn B; Bensch, Staffan
Introduced species are interesting systems for the study of contemporary evolution in new environments because of their spatial and temporal scales. For this study we had three aims: (i) to determine how genetic diversity and genetic differentiation of introduced populations of the house sparrow (Passer domesticus) in Brazil varies with range expansion, (ii) to determine how genetic diversity and differentiation in Brazil compares to ancestral European populations; and (iii) to determine whether selection or genetic drift has been more influential on phenotypic divergence. We used six microsatellite markers to genotype six populations from Brazil and four populations from Europe. We found slightly reduced levels of genetic diversity in Brazilian compared to native European populations. However, among introduced populations of Brazil, we found no association between genetic diversity and time since introduction. Moreover, overall genetic differentiation among introduced populations was low indicating that the expansion took place from large populations in which genetic drift effects would likely have been weak. We found significant phenotypic divergence among sites in Brazil. Given the absence of a spatial genetic pattern, divergent selection and not genetic drift seems to be the main force behind most of the phenotypic divergence encountered. Unravelling whether microevolution (e.g., allele frequency change), phenotypic plasticity, or both mediated phenotypic divergence is challenging and will require experimental work (e.g., common garden experiments or breeding programs).
Lee, Kelly A; Martin, Lynn B; Wikelski, Martin C
When introduced into new regions, invading organisms leave many native pathogens behind and also encounter evolutionarily novel disease threats. In the presence of predominantly novel pathogens that have not co-evolved to avoid inducing a strong host immune response, costly and potentially dangerous defenses such as the systemic inflammatory response could become more harmful than protective to the host. We therefore hypothesized that introduced populations exhibiting dampened inflammatory responses will tend to be more invasive. To provide initial data to assess this hypothesis, we measured metabolic, locomotor, and reproductive responses to inflammatory challenges in North American populations of the highly invasive house sparrow (Passer domesticus) and its less-invasive relative, the tree sparrow (Passer montanus). In the house sparrow, there was no effect of phytohemagglutinin (PHA) challenge on metabolic rate, and there were no detectable differences in locomotor activity between lipopolysaccharide (LPS)-injected birds and saline-injected controls. In contrast, tree sparrows injected with PHA had metabolic rates 20-25% lower than controls, and LPS injection resulted in a 35% drop in locomotor activity. In a common garden captive breeding experiment, there was no effect of killed-bacteria injections on reproduction in the house sparrow, while tree sparrows challenged with bacteria decreased egg production by 40% compared to saline-injected controls. These results provide some of the first data correlating variation in immune defenses with invasion success in introduced-vertebrate populations.
Bichet, Coraline; Scheifler, Renaud; Cœurdassier, Michaël; Julliard, Romain; Sorci, Gabriele; Loiseau, Claire
Anthropogenic pollution poses a threat for the environment and wildlife. Trace metals (TMs) are known to have negative effects on haematological status, oxidative balance, and reproductive success in birds. These pollutants particularly increase in concentration in industrialized, urbanized and intensive agricultural areas. Pollutants can also interfere with the normal functioning of the immune system and, as such, alter the dynamics of host-parasite interactions. Nevertheless, the impact of pollution on infectious diseases has been largely neglected in natural populations of vertebrates. Here, we used a large spatial scale monitoring of 16 house sparrow (Passer domesticus) populations to identify environmental variables likely to explain variation in TMs (lead, cadmium, zinc) concentrations in the feathers. In five of these populations, we also studied the potential link between TMs, prevalence of infection with one species of avian malaria, Plasmodium relictum, and body condition. Our results show that lead concentration is associated with heavily urbanized habitats and that areas with large woodland coverage have higher cadmium and zinc feather concentrations. Our results suggest that lead concentration in the feathers positively correlates with P. relictum prevalence, and that a complex relationship links TM concentrations, infection status, and body condition. This is one of the first studies showing that environmental pollutants are associated with prevalence of an infectious disease in wildlife. The mechanisms underlying this effect are still unknown even though it is tempting to suggest that lead could interfere with the normal functioning of the immune system, as shown in other species. We suggest that more effort should be devoted to elucidate the link between pollution and the dynamics of infectious diseases. PMID:23342022
Background It is often proposed that females should select genetically dissimilar mates to maximize offspring genetic diversity and avoid inbreeding. Several recent studies have provided mixed evidence, however, and in some instances females seem to prefer genetically similar males. A preference for genetically similar mates can be adaptive if outbreeding depression is more harmful than inbreeding depression or if females gain inclusive fitness benefits by mating with close kin. Here, we investigated genetic compatibility and mating patterns in an insular population of house sparrow (Passer domesticus), over a three-year period, using 12 microsatellite markers and one major histocompability complex (MHC) class I gene. Given the small population size and the distance from the mainland, we expected a reduced gene flow in this insular population and we predicted that females would show mating preferences for genetically dissimilar mates. Results Contrary to our expectation, we found that offspring were less genetically diverse (multi-locus heterozygosity) than expected under a random mating, suggesting that females tended to mate with genetically similar males. We found high levels of extra-pair paternity, and offspring sired by extra-pair males had a better fledging success than those sired by the social male. Again, unexpectedly, females tended to be more closely related to extra-pair mates than to their social mates. Our results did not depend on the type of genetic marker used, since microsatellites and MHC genes provided similar results, and we found only little evidence for MHC-dependent mating patterns. Conclusions These results are in agreement with the idea that mating with genetically similar mates can either avoid the disruption of co-adapted genes or confer a benefit in terms of kin selection. PMID:24621140
Bichet, Coraline; Scheifler, Renaud; Cœurdassier, Michaël; Julliard, Romain; Sorci, Gabriele; Loiseau, Claire
Anthropogenic pollution poses a threat for the environment and wildlife. Trace metals (TMs) are known to have negative effects on haematological status, oxidative balance, and reproductive success in birds. These pollutants particularly increase in concentration in industrialized, urbanized and intensive agricultural areas. Pollutants can also interfere with the normal functioning of the immune system and, as such, alter the dynamics of host-parasite interactions. Nevertheless, the impact of pollution on infectious diseases has been largely neglected in natural populations of vertebrates. Here, we used a large spatial scale monitoring of 16 house sparrow (Passer domesticus) populations to identify environmental variables likely to explain variation in TMs (lead, cadmium, zinc) concentrations in the feathers. In five of these populations, we also studied the potential link between TMs, prevalence of infection with one species of avian malaria, Plasmodium relictum, and body condition. Our results show that lead concentration is associated with heavily urbanized habitats and that areas with large woodland coverage have higher cadmium and zinc feather concentrations. Our results suggest that lead concentration in the feathers positively correlates with P. relictum prevalence, and that a complex relationship links TM concentrations, infection status, and body condition. This is one of the first studies showing that environmental pollutants are associated with prevalence of an infectious disease in wildlife. The mechanisms underlying this effect are still unknown even though it is tempting to suggest that lead could interfere with the normal functioning of the immune system, as shown in other species. We suggest that more effort should be devoted to elucidate the link between pollution and the dynamics of infectious diseases.
Monahan, William B; Tingley, Morgan W
The ability of species to respond to novel future climates is determined in part by their physiological capacity to tolerate climate change and the degree to which they have reached and continue to maintain distributional equilibrium with the environment. While broad-scale correlative climatic measurements of a species' niche are often described as estimating the fundamental niche, it is unclear how well these occupied portions actually approximate the fundamental niche per se, versus the fundamental niche that exists in environmental space, and what fitness values bounding the niche are necessary to maintain distributional equilibrium. Here, we investigate these questions by comparing physiological and correlative estimates of the thermal niche in the introduced North American house sparrow (Passer domesticus). Our results indicate that occupied portions of the fundamental niche derived from temperature correlations closely approximate the centroid of the existing fundamental niche calculated on a fitness threshold of 50% population mortality. Using these niche measures, a 75-year time series analysis (1930-2004) further shows that: (i) existing fundamental and occupied niche centroids did not undergo directional change, (ii) interannual changes in the two niche centroids were correlated, (iii) temperatures in North America moved through niche space in a net centripetal fashion, and consequently, (iv) most areas throughout the range of the house sparrow tracked the existing fundamental niche centroid with respect to at least one temperature gradient. Following introduction to a new continent, the house sparrow rapidly tracked its thermal niche and established continent-wide distributional equilibrium with respect to major temperature gradients. These dynamics were mediated in large part by the species' broad thermal physiological tolerances, high dispersal potential, competitive advantage in human-dominated landscapes, and climatically induced changes to the
O'Brien, Valerie A; Brown, Charles R
Wild birds are rarely found with active arbovirus infections, and relatively little is known about the patterns of viremia they exhibit under field conditions or how infection varies with date, bird age, or other factors that potentially affect transmission dynamics. Buggy Creek virus (BCRV; Togaviridae, Alphavirus) is an arbovirus associated with colonially nesting Cliff Swallows (Petrochelidon pyrrhonota) and transmitted by its vector, the hematophagous swallow bug (Oeciacus vicarius), an ectoparasite of the Cliff Swallow. Introduced House Sparrows (Passer domesticus) that have occupied swallow nests at colony sites in peridomestic settings are also exposed to BCRV when fed upon by swallow bugs. We used data from 882 nestling House Sparrows in western Nebraska from 2006 to 2008 to examine seasonal variation and age-related correlates of virus infection in the field. Over 17% of nestling House Sparrows had active infections. Prevalence was higher in 2007 than in 2008 when birds from all colony sites were analyzed, but there was no significant difference between years for sites sampled in both seasons. Buggy Creek virus prevalence was similar in early and late summer, with a peak in midsummer, coinciding with the greatest swallow bug abundance. Nestlings 10 days of age and younger were most commonly infected, and the likelihood of BCRV infection declined for older nestlings. Average viremia titers also declined with age (but did not vary with date) and were high enough at all nestling ages to likely infect blood-feeding arthropods (swallow bugs). Length of viremia for nestlings in the field was ≥4 days, in agreement with an earlier study of BCRV. Nestling birds offer many advantages for field studies of arbovirus amplification and transmission.
Brandstätter, R; Kumar, V; Van't Hof, T J; Gwinner, E
Melatonin, released from the pineal gland, is an important signal within the circadian pacemaking system of passeriform birds. Until now, seasonal variations in melatonin production have only been examined in a few avian species and the role of melatonin in the regulation of annual rhythms in birds is unclear. We investigated plasma melatonin in a group of house sparrows kept in an outside aviary in spring (March/April), summer (May/June), autumn (September/October), and winter (December/January). The durations of elevated melatonin values mirrored the seasonal changes in night length to a certain degree, the melatonin signal being longest in winter and shortest in summer. Additionally, plasma melatonin peak amplitudes differed significantly among seasons, with highest values in spring and summer and lowest values in winter. Cultured explanted pineal glands obtained from animals in winter and summer showed patterns of in vitro melatonin release comparable to in vivo circulating melatonin with different durations of elevated melatonin and peak amplitude values. These data indicate that the circadian pacemaking system of the house sparrow changes properties seasonally, either as a result of endogenous mechanisms or in response to environmental conditions. These properties are maintained in the pineal gland even after isolation from the animal.
Radhamany, Dhanya; Das, Karumampoyil Sakthidas Anoop; Azeez, Parappurath Abdul; Wen, Longying; Sreekala, Leelambika Krishnan
The house sparrow (Passer domesticus) is a widely distributed bird species found throughout the world. Being a species which has close association with humans, they chiefly nest on man-made structures. Here we describe the materials used by the house sparrow for making nests along an urban to rural gradient. For the current study, we selected the Coimbatore to Anaikatty road (State Highway-164), a 27 km inter-state highway, which traverses along an urban core to rural outstretch of Coimbatore. Of the 30 nests observed, 15 nests were from the rural, 8 were from the suburban, and 7 were from the urban areas. The nests had two distinct layers, specifically the structural layer and the inner lining. In the current study, we identified 11 plant species, 2 types of animal matter, and 6 types of anthropogenic matter, including plastic pieces and fine rope. The amount of anthropogenic materials in the nest formation varied along the gradients. The usage of anthropogenic materials was high in urban areas (p<0.05) whereas it did not differ at the sub-urban regions (p>0.05). A gradual decrease in the usage of plant matter towards the urban area was noticed (p<0.05). This study explicitly documents the links between nest material usage along an urban to rural gradient, in a human associated bird. PMID:27688856
Radhamany, Dhanya; Das, Karumampoyil Sakthidas Anoop; Azeez, Parappurath Abdul; Wen, Longying; Sreekala, Leelambika Krishnan
The house sparrow (Passer domesticus) is a widely distributed bird species found throughout the world. Being a species which has close association with humans, they chiefly nest on man-made structures. Here we describe the materials used by the house sparrow for making nests along an urban to rural gradient. For the current study, we selected the Coimbatore to Anaikatty road (State Highway-164), a 27 km inter-state highway, which traverses along an urban core to rural outstretch of Coimbatore. Of the 30 nests observed, 15 nests were from the rural, 8 were from the suburban, and 7 were from the urban areas. The nests had two distinct layers, specifically the structural layer and the inner lining. In the current study, we identified 11 plant species, 2 types of animal matter, and 6 types of anthropogenic matter, including plastic pieces and fine rope. The amount of anthropogenic materials in the nest formation varied along the gradients. The usage of anthropogenic materials was high in urban areas (p<0.05) whereas it did not differ at the sub-urban regions (p>0.05). A gradual decrease in the usage of plant matter towards the urban area was noticed (p<0.05). This study explicitly documents the links between nest material usage along an urban to rural gradient, in a human associated bird.
O'Brien, Valerie A; Meteyer, Carol U; Ip, Hon S; Long, Renee R; Brown, Charles R
Alphaviruses (Togaviridae) infect wild birds, but clinical illness and death attributable to virus in naturally infected birds is rarely reported, particularly for small passerine species or nestlings. Buggy Creek virus is a unique alphavirus in the Western equine encephalomyelitis virus (WEEV) complex that is vectored by the cimicid swallow bug (Oeciacus vicarius), an ectoparasite of the colonially nesting Cliff Swallow (Petrochelidon pyrrhonota) and the introduced House Sparrow (Passer domesticus). While sampling birds for Buggy Creek virus (BCRV) during the summers of 2007 and 2008, we discovered large numbers of clinically ill or dead House Sparrow nestlings. Ill nestlings exhibited ataxia, torticollis, paresis, and lethargy. Histologic examination revealed that encephalitis was the most common finding, followed by myositis, myocarditis, and hepatic changes, but pathology was highly variable. We isolated BCRV from brain tissue in most of the ill or dead nestlings, and from blood, liver, kidney, spleen, lung, feather pulp, and skin in some birds. To our knowledge, this is the first report of clinical illness, gross pathology, and histopathology for a WEEV-complex alphavirus in a field-collected passerine species.
Schrey, Aaron W; Liebl, Andrea L; Richards, Christina L; Martin, Lynn B
Introduced species offer an opportunity to study the ecological process of range expansions. Recently, 3 mechanisms have been identified that may resolve the genetic paradox (the seemingly unlikely success of introduced species given the expected reduction in genetic diversity through bottlenecks or founder effects): multiple introductions, high propagule pressure, and epigenetics. These mechanisms are probably also important in range expansions (either natural or anthropogenic), yet this possibility remains untested in vertebrates. We used microsatellite variation (7 loci) in house sparrows (Passer domesticus), an introduced species that has been spreading across Kenya for ~60 years, to determine if patterns of variation could explain how this human commensal overcame the genetic paradox and expresses such considerable phenotypic differentiation across this new range. We note that in some cases, polygenic traits and epistasis among genes, for example, may not have negative effects on populations. House sparrows arrived in Kenya by a single introduction event (to Mombasa, ~1950) and have lower genetic diversity than native European and introduced North American populations. We used Bayesian clustering of individuals (n = 233) to detect that at least 2 types of range expansion occurred in Kenya: one with genetic admixture and one with little to no admixture. We also found that genetic diversity increased toward a range edge, and the range expansion was consistent with long-distance dispersal. Based on these data, we expect that the Kenyan range expansion was anthropogenically influenced, as the expansions of other introduced human commensals may also be.
Cox, Robert M; Munoz-Garcia, Agusti; Jurkowitz, Marianne S; Williams, Joseph B
Skin is an important avenue of water loss in terrestrial birds, so environmental conditions that necessitate water conservation should favor physiological mechanisms that reduce cutaneous water loss (CWL). Skin resistance to CWL is conferred by a barrier of lipid molecules located in the stratum corneum (SC), the outer layer of the epidermis. In mammals, SC barrier function depends on the conversion of cerebrosides to ceramides by the enzyme beta -glucocerebrosidase ( beta -GlcCer'ase). Avian SC contains both cerebrosides and ceramides, suggesting that observed plasticity in CWL may be mediated by changes in beta -GlcCer'ase activity and resultant SC lipid composition. We tested the hypothesis that changes in ambient humidity would alter beta -GlcCer'ase activity by acclimating house sparrows (Passer domesticus) to either dry (6.5 g H(2)O m(-3) absolute humidity) or humid (31 g H(2)O m(-3)) conditions for 5 and 21 d at 30 degrees C and then measuring beta -GlcCer'ase activity from SC homogenates. Our results provide the first characterization of beta -GlcCer'ase activity in any nonmammalian vertebrate. Relative to nonacclimated controls, both dry- and humid-acclimated sparrows had significantly elevated beta -GlcCer'ase activity at 21 d postacclimation. Across individuals, we observed negative correlations between beta -GlcCer'ase activity and both CWL and SC ceramide content. Although dry- and humid-acclimated sparrows did not differ in beta -GlcCer'ase activity, these results are consistent with our findings that both humidity treatments caused a reduction in CWL and similar changes in SC lipid composition. Our results demonstrate physiological plasticity in CWL and provide tentative support for a role of beta -GlcCer'ase in mediating this response.
Arrigo, Nicole C.; Adams, A. Paige; Watts, Douglas M.; Newman, Patrick C.
Eastern equine encephalitis virus (EEEV; family Togaviridae, genus Alphavirus) is an arbovirus that causes severe disease in humans in North America and in equids throughout the Americas. The enzootic transmission cycle of EEEV in North America involves passerine birds and the ornithophilic mosquito vector, Culiseta melanura, in freshwater swamp habitats. However, the ecology of EEEV in South America is not well understood. Culex (Melanoconion) spp. mosquitoes are considered the principal vectors in Central and South America; however, a primary vertebrate host for EEEV in South America has not yet been identified. Therefore, to further assess the reservoir host potential of wild rodents and wild birds, we compared the infection dynamics of North American and South American EEEV in cotton rats (Sigmodon hispidus) and house sparrows (Passer domesticus). Our findings suggested that each species has the potential to serve as amplification hosts for North and South America EEEVs. PMID:20735920
Arrigo, Nicole C; Adams, A Paige; Watts, Douglas M; Newman, Patrick C; Weaver, Scott C
Eastern equine encephalitis virus (EEEV; family Togaviridae, genus Alphavirus) is an arbovirus that causes severe disease in humans in North America and in equids throughout the Americas. The enzootic transmission cycle of EEEV in North America involves passerine birds and the ornithophilic mosquito vector, Culiseta melanura, in freshwater swamp habitats. However, the ecology of EEEV in South America is not well understood. Culex (Melanoconion) spp. mosquitoes are considered the principal vectors in Central and South America; however, a primary vertebrate host for EEEV in South America has not yet been identified. Therefore, to further assess the reservoir host potential of wild rodents and wild birds, we compared the infection dynamics of North American and South American EEEV in cotton rats (Sigmodon hispidus) and house sparrows (Passer domesticus). Our findings suggested that each species has the potential to serve as amplification hosts for North and South America EEEVs.
Del Amo, Javier; Llorente, Francisco; Figuerola, Jordi; Soriguer, Ramón C; Moreno, Ana M; Cordioli, Paolo; Weissenböck, Herbert; Jiménez-Clavero, Miguel Angel
West Nile virus (WNV) is a zoonotic arboviral pathogen transmitted by mosquitoes in a cycle involving wild birds as reservoir hosts. The virus has recently emerged in North America and re-emerged in Europe. North American WNV outbreaks are often accompanied by high mortality in wild birds, a feature that is uncommon in Europe. The reason for this difference is unknown, but the intrinsic virulence of the viruses circulating in each continent and/or the susceptibility to the disease of Palearctic as opposed to Nearctic wild bird species could play a role. To assess this question, experimental inoculations with four lineage 1 WNV strains, three from southern Europe (Italy/2008, Italy/2009 and Spain/2007) and one from North America (NY99) were performed on house sparrows (Passer domesticus), a wild passerine common in both continents. Non-significant differences which ranged from 0% to 25% were observed in mortality for the different WNV strains. Viremias lasted from 1 to 5-6 days post-inoculation (dpi) in all cases; individuals inoculated with NY99 had significantly higher titres than those inoculated with any of the Euro-Mediterranean strains. Remarkably, host competence was found to be higher for NY99 than for the other strains. Consequently, albeit being pathogenic for house sparrows, some Euro-Mediterranean strains had reduced capacity for replication in -and transmission from- this host, as compared to the NY99 strain. If applicable also to other wild bird host species, this relatively reduced transmission capacity of the Euro-Mediterranean strains could explain the lower incidence of this disease in wild birds in the Euro-Mediterranean area.
McCue, M D; Sivan, O; McWilliams, S R; Pinshow, B
Clinicians commonly measure the (13)CO(2) in exhaled breath samples following administration of a metabolic tracer (breath testing) to diagnose certain infections and metabolic disorders. We believe that breath testing can become a powerful tool to investigate novel questions about the influence of ecological and physiological factors on the oxidative fates of exogenous nutrients. Here we examined several predictions regarding the oxidative kinetics of specific carbohydrates, amino acids and fatty acids in a dietary generalist, the house sparrow (Passer domesticus). After administering postprandial birds with 20 mg of one of seven (13)C-labeled tracers, we measured rates of (13)CO(2) production every 15 min over 2 h. We found that sparrows oxidized exogenous amino acids far more rapidly than carbohydrates or fatty acids, and that different tracers belonging to the same class of physiological fuels had unique oxidative kinetics. Glycine had a mean maximum rate of oxidation (2021 nmol min(-1)) that was significantly higher than that of leucine (351 nmol min(-1)), supporting our prediction that nonessential amino acids are oxidized more rapidly than essential amino acids. Exogenous glucose and fructose were oxidized to a similar extent (5.9% of dose), but the time required to reach maximum rates of oxidation was longer for fructose. The maximum rates of oxidation were significantly higher when exogenous glucose was administered as an aqueous solution (122 nmol min(-1)), rather than as an oil suspension (93 nmol min(-1)), supporting our prediction that exogenous lipids negatively influence rates of exogenous glucose oxidation. Dietary fatty acids had the lowest maximum rates of oxidation (2-6 nmol min(-1)), and differed significantly in the extent to which each was oxidized, with 0.73%, 0.63% and 0.21% of palmitic, oleic and stearic acid tracers oxidized, respectively.
Schrey, Aaron W; Coon, Courtney A C; Grispo, Michael T; Awad, Mohammed; Imboma, Titus; McCoy, Earl D; Mushinsky, Henry R; Richards, Christina L; Martin, Lynn B
Epigenetic mechanisms impact several phenotypic traits and may be important for ecology and evolution. The introduced house sparrow (Passer domesticus) exhibits extensive phenotypic variation among and within populations. We screened methylation in populations from Kenya and Florida to determine if methylation varied among populations, varied with introduction history (Kenyan invasion <50 years old, Florida invasion ~150 years old), and could potentially compensate for decrease genetic variation with introductions. While recent literature has speculated on the importance of epigenetic effects for biological invasions, this is the first such study among wild vertebrates. Methylation was more frequent in Nairobi, and outlier loci suggest that populations may be differentiated. Methylation diversity was similar between populations, in spite of known lower genetic diversity in Nairobi, which suggests that epigenetic variation may compensate for decreased genetic diversity as a source of phenotypic variation during introduction. Our results suggest that methylation differences may be common among house sparrows, but research is needed to discern whether methylation impacts phenotypic variation.
Trivedi, Amit K; Rani, Sangeeta; Kumar, Vinod
Background In many birds, day length (=photoperiod) regulates reproductive cycle. The photoperiodic environment varies between different seasons and latitudes. As a consequence, species at different latitudes may have evolved separate photoperiodic strategies or modified them as per their adaptive need. We studied this using house sparrow as a model since it is found worldwide and is widely investigated. In particular, we examined whether photoperiodism in house sparrows (Passer domesticus) at 27°N, 81°E shared features with those exhibited by its conspecifics at high latitudes. Results Initial experiment described in the wild and captive conditions the gonad development and molt (only in captives) cycles over a 12-month period. Both male and female sparrows had similar seasonal cycles, linked with annual variations in day length; this suggested that seasonal reproduction in house sparrows was under the photoperiodic control. However, a slower testis and attenuated follicular growth among captives indicated that other (supplementary) factors are also involved in controlling the reproductive cycle. Next experiment examined if sparrows underwent seasonal variations in their response to stimulatory effects of long day lengths. When birds were transferred every month over a period of 1 year to 16 hours light:8 hours darkness (16L:8D) for 17–26 weeks, there was indeed a time-of-year effect on the growth-regression cycle of gonads. The final experiment investigated response of house sparrows to a variety of light-dark (LD) cycles. In the first set, sparrows were exposed for 31 weeks to photoperiods that were close to what they receive in between the period from sunrise to sunset at this latitude: 9L:15D (close to shortest day length in December), 12L:12D (equinox, in March and September) 15L:9D (close to longest day length in June). They underwent testicular growth and regression and molt in 12L and 15L photoperiods, but not in 9L photoperiod. In the second set
Brzek, Pawel; Kohl, Kevin D; Caviedes-Vidal, Enrique; Karasov, William H
Feeding conditions during the nestling period may significantly affect whole-life fitness in altricial birds but little is known about the physiological mechanisms responsible for these effects. Permanent changes (irreversible developmental plasticity) in digestive physiology caused by the neonatal diet may form such a mechanism. We previously showed that the lack of starch in the diet of house sparrow (Passer domesticus) nestlings between 3 and 12 days post-hatching significantly decreased the activity of intestinal maltase, an enzyme essential for starch digestion. To check whether diet-induced variation in maltase activity in young house sparrows is reversible, we raised them under laboratory conditions from 3 until 30 days of age on diets with either 0% starch or 25% starch, with some individuals experiencing a switch in their assigned diet at 12 days of age. We found evidence for the presence of an internal, presumably genetic, program for changes in the activity of maltase and sucrase, which was, however, significantly affected by diet composition (i.e. environmental factor). Digestive enzyme activity in 30 day old birds was not influenced by diet composition prior to day 12 but instead depended only on diet that was fed between days 12 and 30. We conclude that plasticity in the activity of intestinal disaccharidases in house sparrow nestlings represents completely reversible phenotypic flexibility that can help young sparrows to cope with unpredictable variation in food composition during ontogeny without long-term effects on their digestive system. However, comparison with other species suggests that the magnitude of digestive flexibility in young passerines may be evolutionarily matched to species-specific variation in feeding conditions.
Killpack, Tess L; Karasov, William H
Birds have evolved phenotypic plasticity in growth and developmental patterns in order to respond to fluctuating environmental conditions and to mitigate the impact of poor feeding on fitness. Chronic food shortage can occur during chick development in the wild, and the responses of altricial birds have not been thoroughly studied. House sparrow (Passer domesticus) nestlings were raised in the laboratory on age-specific meal sizes (controls) or meal sizes 25% less than age-specific amounts (food-restricted) and analyzed at 6, 9 and 12 days post-hatch for differences in growth and development. Food-restricted birds had significantly reduced body mass and body temperature, but skeletal growth was maintained with respect to controls. Muscle mass was significantly reduced and muscle water content was slightly, though not significantly, higher in food-restricted birds, which may reflect slight developmental immaturity. Assimilation organ masses, summed enzymatic capacity of the intestine and lipid content of the liver were significantly reduced in food-restricted birds. Findings from this study indicate that altricial birds experiencing chronic, moderate food restriction throughout the nestling period may allocate resources to structural growth through energy-saving reductions in mass of assimilation organs and body temperature.
Examining the mechanisms responsible for lower ROS release rates in liver mitochondria from the long-lived house sparrow (Passer domesticus) and big brown bat (Eptesicus fuscus) compared to the short-lived mouse (Mus musculus).
Brown, Jason C L; McClelland, Grant B; Faure, Paul A; Klaiman, Jordan M; Staples, James F
Lower ROS release rate in long-lived species is likely caused by decreased reduction of electron transport chain (ETC) complexes, but how this is achieved remains largely unknown. We compared liver mitochondrial H(2)O(2) release rates among endotherms of comparable size and metabolic rate: house sparrow and big brown bat (both long-lived) and house mouse (short-lived). We hypothesized that low ROS release rates in long-lived species result from (i) lower mitochondrial respiration rate, (ii) increased mitochondrial proton conductance ('uncoupling to survive'), and/or (iii) increased ETC oxidative capacity ('spare oxidative capacity'). H(2)O(2) release rate was 70% lower in bats than mice despite similar respiration rates. Consistent with 'uncoupling to survive', proton leakiness was 3-fold higher in bats at membrane potentials above 130mV. Basal H(2)O(2) release rate and respiration rates were 2-fold higher in sparrows than mice. Consistent with 'spare oxidative capacity', subsaturating succinate decreased H(2)O(2) release rate in sparrows but not mice. Moreover, succinate:Cytochrome c oxidoreductase activity was 3-fold higher in sparrows, and ETC inhibitors increased ROS release rate 20-27-fold in sparrows (with glutamate or subsaturating succinate) but only 4-5-fold in mice. Taken together these data suggest that complexes I and III are less reduced under physiological conditions in sparrows. We conclude that different long-lived species may use distinct mechanisms to lower mitochondrial ROS release rate.
Nemeth, Nicole M; Oesterle, Paul T; Poulson, Rebecca L; Jones, Cheryl A; Tompkins, S Mark; Brown, Justin D; Stallknecht, David E
European Starlings (Sturnus vulgaris) and House Sparrows (Passer domesticus) are common peridomestic passerine birds that are often associated with domestic animal production facilities. This association provides a potential means for pathogen transmission between facilities. We inoculated European Starlings and House Sparrows with three non-avian influenza virus strains: two swine isolates (H1N1 and H3N2) and one human isolate representing the H1N1 pandemic strain that originated from swine. No viral shedding was observed in House Sparrows, and shedding was minimal and transient in two of 12 (17%) European Starlings. One of these two infected Starlings seroconverted 14 days after inoculation. These results suggest that these two passerine species are minimally susceptible to current influenza viruses in domestic pigs and therefore pose a negligible risk for transmission between or within swine production facilities.
Lattin, Christine R; Ngai, Heather M; Romero, L Michael
Petroleum can disrupt endocrine function in humans and wildlife, and interacts in particularly complex ways with the hypothalamus-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) axis, responsible for the release of the stress hormones corticosterone and cortisol (hereafter CORT). Ingested petroleum can act in an additive fashion with other stressors to cause increased mortality, but it is not clear exactly why--does petroleum disrupt feedback mechanisms, stress hormone production, or both? This laboratory study aimed to quantify the effects of ingested Gulf of Mexico crude oil on the physiological stress response of house sparrows (Passer domesticus). We examined baseline and stress-induced CORT, negative feedback, and adrenal sensitivity in house sparrows given a 1% oil or control diet (n = 12 in each group). We found that four weeks on a 1% oil diet did not alter baseline CORT titers or efficacy of negative feedback, but significantly reduced sparrows' ability to secrete CORT in response to a standardized stressor and adrenocorticotropin hormone injection, suggesting that oil damages the steroid-synthesizing cells of the adrenal. In another group of animals on the same 1% oil (n = 9) or control diets (n = 8), we examined concentrations of eight different blood chemistry parameters, and CORT in feathers grown before and during the feeding experiments as other potential biomarkers of oil exposure. None of the blood chemistry parameters differed between birds on the oil and control diets after two or four weeks of feeding, nor did feather CORT differ between the two groups. Overall, this study suggests that the response of CORT to stressors, but not baseline HPA function, may be a particularly sensitive bioindicator of sub-lethal chronic effects of crude oil exposure.
Fischer, Clare Parker; Romero, L Michael
When wild animals are brought into captivity for the first time, they frequently develop chronic stress symptoms. Animals can develop glucocorticoid dysregulation or changes in the sympathetic nervous system over the course of the first week in captivity. By blocking the action of epinephrine and norepinephrine using α- or β-blockers, we hoped to reduce the degree of chronic stress symptoms exhibited by newly captured house sparrows. We measured corticosterone, heart rate and heart rate variability in 24 house sparrows (Passer domesticus) over the first week of captivity. The birds were treated with saline, propranolol (a β-blocker) or phentolamine (an α-blocker) for the first 3 days of captivity. We also compared newly captured animals with animals that had been held in captivity for 1 month. During the first week of captivity, baseline corticosterone increased, but that increase was blocked by propranolol. Heart rate was not different between the treatment groups, but it was higher during the first week than after 1 month in captivity. Sympathetic nervous system activity (as measured by heart rate variability) decreased over the first week of captivity, but was not affected by treatment. β-Blockers, but not α-blockers, might help to improve some symptoms of chronic stress in newly captured animals.
Fischer, Clare Parker; Romero, L. Michael
When wild animals are brought into captivity for the first time, they frequently develop chronic stress symptoms. Animals can develop glucocorticoid dysregulation or changes in the sympathetic nervous system over the course of the first week in captivity. By blocking the action of epinephrine and norepinephrine using α- or β-blockers, we hoped to reduce the degree of chronic stress symptoms exhibited by newly captured house sparrows. We measured corticosterone, heart rate and heart rate variability in 24 house sparrows (Passer domesticus) over the first week of captivity. The birds were treated with saline, propranolol (a β-blocker) or phentolamine (an α-blocker) for the first 3 days of captivity. We also compared newly captured animals with animals that had been held in captivity for 1 month. During the first week of captivity, baseline corticosterone increased, but that increase was blocked by propranolol. Heart rate was not different between the treatment groups, but it was higher during the first week than after 1 month in captivity. Sympathetic nervous system activity (as measured by heart rate variability) decreased over the first week of captivity, but was not affected by treatment. β-Blockers, but not α-blockers, might help to improve some symptoms of chronic stress in newly captured animals. PMID:27752321
... BIRD PERMITS Control of Depredating and Otherwise Injurious Birds § 21.44 Depredation order for horned... horticultural crops. Take of birds under this order must be done under the supervision of the county agriculture... bird species, or for take of horned larks or white-crowned sparrows from May 1 through October 31....
When, where and from whom young songbirds learn their songs have been controversial issues in the study of song development. We chose to study some of these issues in two migratory and closely related songbirds, the chipping sparrow, Spizella passerina, and field sparrow, Spizella pusilla. Nestlings of both species were collected in western Massachusetts and hand-reared in the laboratory. There, juveniles were placed in separate cages and assigned to one of three rooms; in each room were eight young chipping sparrows, eight young field sparrows and two adult tutors of each species, arranged so that most of the young males were adjacent to adult tutors of the same species. During mid-winter, adult tutors were moved from one room to another, so that the young birds heard different song types from different tutors during their hatching year and the following spring. From spectral analysis of our extensive tape recordings, we found that most juvenile males imitated the songs of their hatching-year tutors but then gradually modified their songs to match more closely either their adult tutors or other pupils the next spring. One chipping and one field sparrow clearly imitated a new song syllable from a spring live tutor; that is, these yearling males learned songs by 'instruction'. Other sparrows improvised extensively, and one chipping sparrow learned a field sparrow's song syllable. Our results reveal great individual variation in how songs are developed, and we expect similar flexibility among birds in nature. Copyright 1999 The Association for the Study of Animal Behaviour.
Pap, Péter L; Pătraş, Laura; Osváth, Gergely; Buehler, Deborah M; Versteegh, Maaike A; Sesarman, Alina; Banciu, Manuela; Vágási, Csongor I
Temporal variation in oxidative physiology and its associated immune function may occur as a result of changes in parasite infection over the year. Evidence from field and laboratory studies suggests links between infection risk, oxidative stress, and the ability of animals to mount an immune response; however, the importance of parasites in mediating seasonal change in physiological makeup is still debated. Also, little is known about the temporal consistency of relationships among parasite infestation, markers of oxidative status and immune function in wild animals, and whether variation in oxidative measures can be viewed as a single integrated system. To address these questions, we sampled free-living house sparrows (Passer domesticus) every 2 mo over a complete year and measured infestation with coccidian parasites as well as nine traits that reflect condition, oxidative physiology, and immune function. We found significant seasonal variation in coccidian infestation and in seven out of nine condition and physiological variables over the year. However, we found little support for parasite-mediated change in condition, oxidative physiology, and immune functions in house sparrows. In accordance with this, we found no temporal consistency in relationships between the intensity of infestation and physiology. Among measures of oxidative physiology, antioxidants (measured as the total antioxidant capacity and the concentration of uric acid in the plasma) and oxidative damage (measured through the level of malondialdehyde in plasma) positively and consistently covaried over the year, while no such associations were found for the rest of traits (body mass, total glutathione, and leukocyte numbers). Our results show that natural levels of chronic coccidian infection have a limited effect on the seasonal change of physiological traits, suggesting that the variation of the latter is probably more affected by short-term disturbances, such as acute infection and/or season
Venous blood gas and lactate values of mourning doves (Zenaida macroura), boat-tailed grackles (Quiscalus major), and house sparrows (Passer domesticus) after capture by mist net, banding, and venipuncture.
Harms, Craig A; Harms, Ronald V
Blood gas partial pressures, pH, and bicarbonate and lactate concentrations were measured from the basilic vein of mourning doves (Zenaida macroura) and the jugular vein of boat-tailed grackles (Quiscalus major) and house sparrows (Passer domesticus) to assess immediate impacts of mist net capture and handling for banding and venipuncture. Mourning doves and house sparrows exhibited mild acidemia (median [minimum-maximum] venous blood pH(41 degrees C) = 7.394 [7.230-7.496] and 7.395 [7.248-7.458], respectively), relative to boat-tailed grackles (Quiscalus major; 7.452 [7.364-7.512]), but for different reasons. Mourning doves exhibited relative metabolic acidosis (lower venous blood pH, higher lactate concentrations, lower bicarbonate, and no significant differences in partial pressure of CO2 (pCO2) or partial pressure of O2 (pO2) compared with boat-tailed grackles). House sparrows exhibited relative respiratory acidosis (lower venous blood pH, higher pCO2, lower pO2, and no significant differences in bicarbonate and lactate concentrations compared with boat-tailed grackles). All birds captured by mist net and handled for banding and venipuncture experienced some degree of lactic acidemia; and values were greater in mourning doves (lactate, 7.72 [3.94-14.14] mmol/L) than in boat-tailed grackles (5.74 [3.09-8.75] mmol/L) and house sparrows (4.77 [2.66-12.03] mmol/L), despite mourning doves resisting least and being easiest to disentangle from the mist net. House sparrows were more susceptible to respiratory acidosis, warranting particular care in handling birds <30 g to minimize interference with ventilation. The different sample collection site for mourning doves may have affected results in comparison with the other two species, due to activity of the wing muscles. However, despite the higher lactate concentrations, pCO2 was relatively low in doves. The metabolic, respiratory, and acid-base alterations observed in this study were minor in most cases, indicative of
Ornelas-Almeida, Maria Angela; de Oliveira, Flávio Ramos Bastos; da Silva, Alessandra Estrela; Moreira, Eduardo Luiz Trindade; Maia, Paulo César Costa; de Fátima Cardoso Duarte, Larissa; Murphy, Gleeson; Ayres, Maria Consuelo Caribe
Nodular trombiculinosis has been reported in Brazil in chickens [Torres, S., Braga, W., 1939. Apolonia tigipioensis, g. e sp. n. (Trombiculinae) parasito de Gallus gallus dom. Chave para determinação de gêneros. Boletim da S.A.I.C. 4, 37-44] and humans [Carneiro, L.S., 1952. Uma nova acaríase humana - Contribuição ao seu estudo. Imprensa Industrial, Recife. Faculdade de Medicina da Universidade do Recife, Tese Livre Docência, p. 56]. In this report, a juvenile ostrich and a house sparrow, both originating from a riverside property in the town of Petrolina in the state of Pernambuco, presented 87 and eight nodules, respectively, on various locations of their bodies. Physical expression of the nodules liberated parasites that were morphologically identified as mites from the family Trombiculidae. The mites were further identified as Apolonia tigipioensis by the presence of an elongated body form and transversely striated, three pairs of long legs each with seven segments, primary coxae with a single seta, each tarsus terminating with three claws, and a scutum with an anteromedian projection and paired anteromedian setae. Histopathologic examination of skin biopsies from these birds, stained with hematoxilin-eosin, revealed acute parasitic cystic lymphoplasmacytic dermatitis.
Zhang, Yufeng; Eyster, Kathleen; Liu, Jin-Song; Swanson, David L.
ABSTRACT Maximal metabolic outputs for exercise and thermogenesis in birds presumably influence fitness through effects on flight and shivering performance. Because both summit (Msum, maximum thermoregulatory metabolic rate) and maximum (MMR, maximum exercise metabolic rate) metabolic rates are functions of skeletal muscle activity, correlations between these measurements and their mechanistic underpinnings might occur. To examine whether such correlations occur, we measured the effects of experimental cold and exercise training protocols for 3 weeks on body (Mb) and muscle (Mpec) masses, basal metabolic rate (BMR), Msum, MMR, pectoralis mRNA and protein expression for myostatin, and mRNA expression of TLL-1 and TLL-2 (metalloproteinase activators of myostatin) in house sparrows (Passer domesticus). Both training protocols increased Msum, MMR, Mb and Mpec, but BMR increased with cold training and decreased with exercise training. No significant differences occurred for pectoralis myostatin mRNA expression, but cold and exercise increased the expression of TLL-1 and TLL-2. Pectoralis myostatin protein levels were generally reduced for both training groups. These data clearly demonstrate cross-training effects of cold and exercise in birds, and are consistent with a role for myostatin in increasing pectoralis muscle mass and driving organismal increases in metabolic capacities. PMID:25987736
Wolf, Nathan; Bowen, Gabriel J; Del Rio, Carlos Martinez
We investigated the relationships between the δdeuterium (δD) and the δ(18)oxygen (δ(18)O) of drinking water and the δD and δ(18)O of blood plasma, red blood cells and feathers in house sparrows (Passer domesticus) fed on diets with identical hydrogen and oxygen isotopic compositions and five isotopically distinct drinking water treatments. We expected and, with only one exception ((18)O in blood plasma), found linear relationships between the δD and δ(18)O values of drinking water and those of bird tissues. The slopes of these relationships, which estimate the percentage contributions of drinking water to the tissue isotopic signatures, were lower than those of previous studies. We found significant differences in the δD and δ(18)O values of feathers, red blood cells and plasma solids. In feathers and red blood cells, δD and δ(18)O values were linearly correlated. Our results have three implications for isotopic field studies: (1) if the isotopic composition of drinking water differs from that of food, its effect on tissue isotope values can confound the assignment of animals to a site of origin; (2) comparisons of the δD and δ(18)O values of different tissues must account for inter-tissue discrimination factors; and (3) δD/δ(18)O linear relationships are probably as prevalent in animal systems as they are in geohydrological systems. These relationships may prove to be useful tools in animal isotopic ecology.
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Wang, Gang; Harpole, Clifford E; Paulose, Jiffin; Cassone, Vincent M
Temperate zone birds are highly seasonal in many aspects of their physiology. In mammals, but not in birds, the pineal gland is an important component regulating seasonal patterns of primary gonadal functions. Pineal melatonin in birds instead affects seasonal changes in brain song control structures, suggesting the pineal gland regulates seasonal song behavior. The present study tests the hypothesis that the pineal gland transduces photoperiodic information to the control of seasonal song behavior to synchronize this important behavior to the appropriate phenology. House sparrows, Passer domesticus, expressed a rich array of vocalizations ranging from calls to multisyllabic songs and motifs of songs that varied under a regimen of different photoperiodic conditions that were simulated at different times of year. Control (SHAM) birds exhibited increases in song behavior when they were experimentally transferred from short days, simulating winter, to equinoctial and long days, simulating summer, and decreased vocalization when they were transferred back to short days. When maintained in long days for longer periods, the birds became reproductively photorefractory as measured by the yellowing of the birds' bills; however, song behavior persisted in the SHAM birds, suggesting a dissociation of reproduction from the song functions. Pinealectomized (PINX) birds expressed larger, more rapid increases in daily vocal rate and song repertoire size than did the SHAM birds during the long summer days. These increases gradually declined upon the extension of the long days and did not respond to the transfer to short days as was observed in the SHAM birds, suggesting that the pineal gland conveys photoperiodic information to the vocal control system, which in turn regulates song behavior.
Ensminger, Amanda L.; Fernández-Juricic, Esteban
Between-individual variation has been documented in a wide variety of taxa, especially for behavioral characteristics; however, intra-population variation in sensory systems has not received similar attention in wild animals. We measured a key trait of the visual system, the density of retinal cone photoreceptors, in a wild population of house sparrows (Passer domesticus). We tested whether individuals differed from each other in cone densities given within-individual variation across the retina and across eyes. We further tested whether the existing variation could lead to individual differences in two aspects of perception: visual resolution and chromatic contrast. We found consistent between-individual variation in the densities of all five types of avian cones, involved in chromatic and achromatic vision. Using perceptual modeling, we found that this degree of variation translated into significant between-individual differences in visual resolution and the chromatic contrast of a plumage signal that has been associated with mate choice and agonistic interactions. However, there was no evidence for a relationship between individual visual resolution and chromatic contrast. The implication is that some birds may have the sensory potential to perform “better” in certain visual tasks, but not necessarily in both resolution and contrast simultaneously. Overall, our findings (a) highlight the need to consider multiple individuals when characterizing sensory traits of a species, and (b) provide some mechanistic basis for between-individual variation in different behaviors (i.e., animal personalities) and for testing the predictions of several widely accepted hypotheses (e.g., honest signaling). PMID:25372039
Zhang, Yufeng; Carter, Travis; Eyster, Kathleen; Swanson, David L
Summit maximum thermoregulatory metabolic rate (Msum) and maximum exercise metabolic rate (MMR) both increase in response to acute cold or exercise training in birds. Because lipids are the main fuel supporting both thermogenesis and exercise in birds, adjustments to lipid transport and catabolic capacities may support elevated energy demands from cold and exercise training. To examine a potential mechanistic role for lipid transport and catabolism in organismal cross-training effects (exercise effects on both exercise and thermogenesis, and vice versa), we measured enzyme activities and mRNA and protein expression in pectoralis muscle for several key steps of lipid transport and catabolism pathways in house sparrows (Passer domesticus) during acute exercise and cold training. Both training protocols elevated pectoralis protein levels of fatty acid translocase (FAT/CD36), cytosolic fatty acid-binding protein, and citrate synthase (CS) activity. However, mRNA expression of FAT/CD36 and both mRNA and protein expression of plasma membrane fatty acid-binding protein did not change for either training group. CS activities in supracoracoideus, leg and heart, and carnitine palmitoyl transferase (CPT) and β-hydroxyacyl CoA-dehydrogenase activities in all muscles did not vary significantly with either training protocol. Both Msum and MMR were significantly positively correlated with CPT and CS activities. These data suggest that up-regulation of trans-sarcolemmal and intramyocyte lipid transport capacities and cellular metabolic intensities, along with previously documented increases in body and pectoralis muscle masses and pectoralis myostatin (a muscle growth inhibitor) levels, are common mechanisms underlying the training effects of both exercise and shivering in birds.
Lattin, Christine R.; Romero, L. Michael
Stress-induced concentrations of glucocorticoid hormones (including corticosterone, CORT) can be suppressed by chronic exposure to a low dose of ingested petroleum. However, endocrine-disrupting chemicals could interfere with CORT signalling beyond the disruption of hormone titres, including effects on receptors in different target tissues. In this study, we examined the effects of 6 weeks of exposure to a petroleum-laced diet (1% oil weight:food weight) on tissue mass and intracellular CORT receptors in liver, fat, muscle and kidney (metabolic tissues), spleen (an immune tissue) and testes (a reproductive tissue). In the laboratory, male house sparrows were fed either a 1% weathered crude oil (n = 12) or a control diet (n = 12); glucocorticoid receptors and mineralocorticoid receptors were quantified using radioligand binding assays. In oil-exposed birds, glucocorticoid receptors were lower in one metabolic tissue (liver), higher in another metabolic tissue (fat) and unchanged in four other tissues (kidney, muscle, spleen and testes) compared with control birds. We saw no differences in mineralocorticoid receptors between groups. We also saw a trend towards reduced mass of the testes in oil-exposed birds compared with controls, but no differences in fat, kidney, liver, muscle or spleen mass between the two groups. This is the first study to examine the effects of petroleum on CORT receptor density in more than one or two target tissues. Given that a chronic low dose of ingested petroleum can affect stress-induced CORT titres as well as receptor density, this demonstrates that oil can act at multiple levels to disrupt an animal’s response to environmental stressors. This also highlights the potential usefulness of the stress response as a bioindicator of chronic crude oil exposure. PMID:27293679
While there is extensive evidence on the overall benefits of deinstitutionalisation, the move from institutional care to providing accommodation and support in small to medium sized dispersed housing schemes has not gone uncontested. Recently, a number of commentators have argued for the development of cluster housing on the basis that it may…
Roessler, Richard T; Bishop, Malachy; Rumrill, Phillip D; Sheppard-Jones, Kathleen; Waletich, Brittany; Umeasiegbu, Veronica; Bishop, Lisa
This study evaluated the specialized housing, transportation, and resource needs and barriers of adults with MS. Information pertaining to barriers and barrier removal strategies related to housing and transportation issues for adults with MS was gathered as part of a national survey of a randomly selected and representative sample of 5082 adults with MS, in cooperation with affiliate chapters of the National Multiple Sclerosis Society (NMSS) and the North American Research Committee on Multiple Sclerosis (NARCOMS). This article presents a qualitative analysis of participants' responses to questions addressing: (a) barriers to obtaining specialized housing and adapted transportation for individuals with MS, (b) factors contributing to maintenance of an independent lifestyle, and (c) information and referral resources pertinent to obtaining specialized housing and adapted transportation. The results provide the first assessment of these issues on a national scale and underscore the need for increased access to professional consultation, financial resources, and housing modification information and resources to enable persons with MS to obtain the specialized housing needed to maintain maximal independent lifestyles.
Tsai, Jack; Bond, Gary R.; Salyers, Michelle P.; Godfrey, Jenna L.; Davis, Kristin E
Housing is a crucial issue for adults with severe mental illness and co-occurring substance use disorders, as this population is particularly susceptible to housing instability and homelessness. We interviewed 40 adults with dual disorders, living in either supervised or independent housing arrangements, to examine housing preferences, decision making processes surrounding housing choices, and perceived barriers to housing. We found that many respondents indicated their housing preferences had changed over time, and some clients related housing preferences to recovery. Although the majority of clients preferred independent housing, many also described benefits of supervised housing. Clients’ current living situations appeared to be driven primarily by treatment provider recommendations and availability of housing. Common barriers to obtaining desired housing were lack of income and information. These findings have implications for supported housing models and approaches to providing housing for clients. PMID:19898935
Guzy, M.J.; Ribic, C.A.; Sample, D.W.
We document the first reported observation of helping at the nest of a Henslow's Sparrow (Ammodramus henslowii). Video surveillance recorded two unbanded adults (a presumed male and female) and one banded adult male feeding chicks. No intraspecific aggression among the adults was observed.
BLOOD GAS, LACTATE, AND HEMATOLOGY EFFECTS OF VENIPUNCTURE TIMING AND LOCATION AFTER MIST-NET CAPTURE OF MOURNING DOVES (ZENAIDA MACROURA), BOAT-TAILED GRACKLES (QUISCALUS MAJOR), AND HOUSE SPARROWS (PASSER DOMESTICUS).
Harms, Craig A; Jinks, Maggie R; Harms, Ronald V
Venous blood gas partial pressures, pH, bicarbonate and lactate concentrations, packed cell volume, white blood cell differential counts, and heterophil/lymphocyte ratios were measured from Mourning Doves (Zenaida macroura), Boat-tailed Grackles (Quiscalus major), and House Sparrows (Passer domesticus). Birds were bled promptly after mist-net capture and banding or following a targeted delay of 45-60 min, in order to assess the impacts of a brief holding period commonly practiced in large-scale bird banding operations. Additionally, effects of venipuncture location (basilic [=ulnar] vein versus jugular vein) were evaluated in male Boat-tailed Grackles sampled promptly after capture and banding. All comparisons were with unpaired samples; no birds were subjected to more than one venipuncture. All three species exhibited moderate improvements in blood gas and acid-base status after the delay, with reductions in lactate concentrations with or without concurrent increases in pH and bicarbonate. Boat-tailed Grackles exhibited an increased proportion of heterophils in the differential white blood cell count following a delay in sampling, suggestive of a stress leukogram. There were no significant differences between basilic and jugular venipuncture results from male Boat-tailed Grackles. Most metabolic, respiratory, and acid-base alterations were minor, but a small number of birds exhibited values (e.g., temperature-corrected pH <7.3, lactate >10 mmol/L) that could be of concern if combined with other adverse conditions. For such birds, a short delay between capture and processing could benefit their blood gas and acid-base status, although loss of time foraging or feeding young and greater activation of the hypophyseal-pituitary-adrenal axis are additional considerations.
Trier, Cassandra N; Hermansen, Jo S; Sætre, Glenn-Peter; Bailey, Richard I
Studies of reproductive isolation between homoploid hybrid species and their parent species have rarely been carried out. Here we investigate reproductive barriers between a recently recognized hybrid bird species, the Italian sparrow Passer italiae and its parent species, the house sparrow P. domesticus and Spanish sparrow P. hispaniolensis. Reproductive barriers can be difficult to study in hybrid species due to lack of geographical contact between taxa. However, the Italian sparrow lives parapatrically with the house sparrow and both sympatrically and parapatrically with the Spanish sparrow. Through whole-transcriptome sequencing of six individuals of each of the two parent species we identified a set of putatively parent species-diagnostic single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) markers. After filtering for coverage, genotyping success (>97%) and multiple SNPs per gene, we retained 86 species-informative, genic, nuclear and mitochondrial SNP markers from 84 genes for analysis of 612 male individuals. We show that a disproportionately large number of sex-linked genes, as well as the mitochondria and nuclear genes with mitochondrial function, exhibit sharp clines at the boundaries between the hybrid and the parent species, suggesting a role for mito-nuclear and sex-linked incompatibilities in forming reproductive barriers. We suggest that genomic conflict via interactions between mitochondria and sex-linked genes with mitochondrial function ("mother's curse") at one boundary and centromeric drive at the other may best explain our findings. Hybrid speciation in the Italian sparrow may therefore be influenced by mechanisms similar to those involved in non-hybrid speciation, but with the formation of two geographically separated species boundaries instead of one. Spanish sparrow alleles at some loci have spread north to form reproductive barriers with house sparrows, while house sparrow alleles at different loci, including some on the same chromosome, have spread in
Rieke, Katherine; Smolsky, Ann; Bock, Erin; Erkes, Laura Peet; Porterfield, Erin; Watanabe-Galloway, Shinobu
Individuals experiencing chronic homelessness may utilize hospital services more frequently than the general population. Understanding the benefits of providing permanent supportive housing to these individuals can lead to improved services for this population. This study examined the effect of supportive housing placement on hospital admissions of adults who were homeless. Admissions were examined for a period of one-year pre- and postsupportive housing placement for 23 adults. Results showed a reduction in the number of emergency department admissions and an increase in outpatient admissions during the year following housing placement, indicating that supportive housing may encourage more appropriate use of health care services.
Tsai, Jack; Bond, Gary R.; Davis, Kristin E.
Housing is an essential component of psychiatric rehabilitation, particularly for consumers with dual diagnoses. Research has not clearly examined why and when consumers prefer different types of housing. This exploratory study examined 1) whether housing preferences differ between stage of treatment for substance abuse, 2) whether consumers who prefer certain housing types have preferences for certain characteristics, and 3) whether consumers living in different types of housing report differences in social support, choice, and housing satisfaction. A total of 103 participants living in supervised housing (n= 65), independent apartment housing (n= 22), single room occupancy hotels (n= 11), and with family (n= 5) completed self-report questionnaires. Results showed that 1) the majority of participants preferred their own apartment or house across different stages of treatment, 2) preference for supervised housing was associated with on-site staff and peer support while preference for apartment housing was associated with autonomy and privacy, and 3) consumers in single room occupancies reported the least choice and lowest satisfaction. These findings contribute to the understanding of consumers’ housing preferences and the differences consumers perceive between certain housing types. PMID:21415937
Carder, Paula; Luhr, Gretchen; Kohon, Jacklyn
Affordable housing is an important form of income security for low-income older persons. This article describes characteristics of older persons waitlisted for either public housing or a housing choice voucher (HCV; previously Section 8) in Portland, Oregon. 358 persons (32% response rate) completed a mailed survey with questions about demographics, health and housing status, food insecurity, and preference for housing with services. Findings indicate that many waitlisted older persons experienced homelessness or housing instability, poor health, high hospital use, and food insecurity. Public housing applicants were significantly more likely to report lower incomes, homelessness, and food insecurity than HCV applicants. We conclude with policy implications for housing and health agencies that serve low-income older persons.
Collymore, Chereen; Tolwani, Ravi J; Rasmussen, Skye
Environmental enrichment provides laboratory-housed species the opportunity to express natural behavior and exert control over their home environment, thereby minimizing stress. We sought to determine whether providing an artificial plant in the holding tank as enrichment influenced anxiety-like behaviors and place-preference choice in adult zebrafish. Fish were housed singly or in social groups of 5 for 3 wk in 1 of 4 experimental housing environments: single-housed enriched (n = 30), single-housed barren (n = 30), group-housed enriched (n = 30), and group-housed barren (n = 30). On week 4, individual fish were selected randomly from each of the experimental housing environments and tested by using novel-tank, light–dark, and place-preference tests. Housing fish singly in a barren environment increased anxiety-like behaviors in the novel-tank and light–dark behavioral tests. Single-housed zebrafish in barren tanks as well as zebrafish group-housed with conspecifics, both with and without plant enrichment, spent more time associating with conspecifics than with the artificial plant enrichment device during the place-preference test. Single-housed fish maintained in enriched tanks displayed no preference between a compartment with conspecifics or an artificial plant. Our results suggest the addition of an artificial plant as enrichment may benefit single-housed zebrafish when social housing is not possible. PMID:26045453
Felce, D.; Perry, J.
Background: There is little evidence to guide the commissioning of residential provision for adults with autistic spectrum disorder (ASD) in the UK. We aim to explore the degree and impact of diagnostic congregation among adults with intellectual disabilities (ID) and ASD living in staffed housing. Methods: One hundred and fifty-seven adults with…
Wagner, Shannon L.; Shubair, Mamdouh M.; Michalos, Alex C.
There is paucity of research investigating opinions and attitudes of seniors 55 years of age and older in relation to housing accommodation and services sensitive to the needs of the senior population. We describe the results of a cross-sectional survey soliciting opinions and attitudes of seniors with respect to a variety of housing issues…
Gedin, Tonii C; Resnick, Barbara
The prevalence of HIV in older adults is rising. This increase can be attributed to inconsistent condom use, low perceived disease susceptibility, and a sexual health knowledge gap found in older adults. Yet, little to no health promotion for older adults focuses on sex education. This study sought to determine the feasibility of a group-based educational program in senior housing settings and consider the utility of a self-efficacy based group education program on knowledge of disease risk and preventive techniques among older adults living in senior housing.
Gabrielian, Sonya; Young, Alexander S; Greenberg, Jared M; Bromley, Elizabeth
Objective: Research suggests that social supports are associated with housing retention among adults who have experienced homelessness. Yet, we know very little about the social support context in consumers find and retain housing. We examined the ways and identified the junctures in which consumers' skills and deficits in accessing and mobilizing social supports influenced their longitudinal housing status. Method: We performed semi-structured qualitative interviews with VA Greater Los Angeles consumers (n = 19) with serious mental illness, substance use disorders, and a history of homelessness; interviews explored associations between longitudinal housing status (categorized as: stable, independent housing; sheltered housing, continually engaged in structured housing programs; and unstable housing) and social supports. We compared data from consumers in these 3 mutually exclusive categories. Results: All participants described social support as important for finding and maintaining housing. However, participants used formal (provider/case managers) and informal (family/friends) supports in different ways. Participants in stable housing relied on formal and informal supports to obtain/maintain housing. Participants in sheltered housing primarily used formal supports, for example, case management staff. Unstably housed participants used formal and informal supports, but some of these relationships were superficial or of negative valence. Interpersonal problems were prevalent across longitudinal housing status categories. Conclusions and Implications for Practice: Social context, including patterns of formal and informal support, was associated with participants' longitudinal housing status. Within interventions to end homelessness, these findings suggest the value of future research to identify, tailor, and implement practices that can help consumers improve their social resources. (PsycINFO Database Record
Watanabe, S; Uozumi, M; Tanaka, N
Six adult Java sparrows were trained to discriminate between consonant and dissonant sounds consisting of three tones. In the consonance group, the perching response was reinforced when consonance was presented, but not when dissonance was presented. Both groups were given an inversion test, in which the first inversion of the chord was used as a stimulus. Four of six birds learned the discrimination and were given two tests. In the first test, novel consonances and novel dissonances were presented. All birds maintained the discrimination. When inverted consonances and dissonances were presented in the second test, the discriminative behavior was not well demonstrated. When novel dissonances consisting of tones with different intervals were presented in the third test, birds trained to perch for dissonance performed well, whereas those trained to perch for consonance did not. In summary, Java sparrows were able to discriminate between consonances and dissonances and demonstrated generalization to new combinations, they do not discriminate the same consonances and dissonances.
Tizard, I R; Fish, N A; Harmeson, J
Salmonella typhimurium was isolated from nine of 60 wild sparrows trapped in the Guelph area. While this organism was isolated from birds trapped at several different locations, the highest prevalence was in sparrows trapped in close proximity to an animal clinic. The significance of these findings in relation to human and animal salmonellosis is discussed.
Phan, Jennifer A; Kicic, Anthony; Berry, Luke J; Fernandes, Lynette B; Zosky, Graeme R; Sly, Peter D; Larcombe, Alexander N
Human rhinovirus is a key viral trigger for asthma exacerbations. To date, murine studies investigating rhinovirus-induced exacerbation of allergic airways disease have employed systemic sensitisation/intranasal challenge with ovalbumin. In this study, we combined human-rhinovirus infection with a clinically relevant mouse model of aero-allergen exposure using house-dust-mite in an attempt to more accurately understand the links between human-rhinovirus infection and exacerbations of asthma. Adult BALB/c mice were intranasally exposed to low-dose house-dust-mite (or vehicle) daily for 10 days. On day 9, mice were inoculated with human-rhinovirus-1B (or UV-inactivated human-rhinovirus-1B). Forty-eight hours after inoculation, we assessed bronchoalveolar cellular inflammation, levels of relevant cytokines/serum antibodies, lung function and responsiveness/sensitivity to methacholine. House-dust-mite exposure did not result in a classical TH2-driven response, but was more representative of noneosinophilic asthma. However, there were significant effects of house-dust-mite exposure on most of the parameters measured including increased cellular inflammation (primarily macrophages and neutrophils), increased total IgE and house-dust-mite-specific IgG1 and increased responsiveness/sensitivity to methacholine. There were limited effects of human-rhinovirus-1B infection alone, and the combination of the two insults resulted in additive increases in neutrophil levels and lung parenchymal responses to methacholine (tissue elastance). We conclude that acute rhinovirus infection exacerbates house-dust-mite-induced lung disease in adult mice. The similarity of our results using the naturally occurring allergen house-dust-mite, to previous studies using ovalbumin, suggests that the exacerbation of allergic airways disease by rhinovirus infection could act via multiple or conserved mechanisms.
Fletcher, Jack M.; Morris, Robin D.
Although best known for work with children and adults with intellectual disabilities and autism spectrum disorders, training in speech pathology and a doctorate in clinical psychology and neuropsychology was the foundation for Sara Sparrow's long-term interest in reading disabilities. Her first papers were on dyslexia and laterality, and the…
Adult house flies (Diptera: Muscidae; Musca domestica L.) disseminate bacteria from microbe-rich substrates to areas where humans and domesticated animals reside. Because bacterial abundance fluctuates widely across substrates, flies encounter and ingest varying amounts of bacteria. We investigated ...
Killinger, George G., Ed.; And Others
Seventy-four participants attended the 4-day National Conference on Pre-Release Programs for a symposium on adult offender programs. Presentations heard included: (1) "Halfway House Programs--A National Overview" by O.J. Keller, Jr., (2) "The Evolving Program of a Privately Operated Halfway House" by Robert P. Taylor, (3) "The Employment Program…
Maier, K.; Walton, R.; Kasper, P.
ABSTRAC T Henslow’s Sparrows are endangered prairie birds, and Grasshopper Sparrows are considered rare prairie birds. Both of these birds were abundant in Illinois, but their populations have been declining due to loss of the grasslands. This begins an ongoing study of the birds’ habitat so Fermilab can develop a land management plan for the Henslow’s and Grasshoppers. The Henslow’s were found at ten sites and Grasshoppers at eight sites. Once the birds were located, the vegetation at their sites was studied. Measurements of the maximum plant height, average plant height, and duff height were taken and estimates of the percent of grass, forbs, duff, and bare ground were recorded for each square meter studied. The same measurements were taken at ten random grassland sites on Fermilab property. Several t-tests were performed on the data, and it was found that both Henslow’s Sparrows and Grasshopper Sparrows preferred areas with a larger percentage of grass than random areas. Henslow’s also preferred areas with less bare ground than random areas, while Grasshoppers preferred areas with more bare ground than random areas. In addition, Grasshopper Sparrows preferred a lower percentage of forbs than was found in random areas and a shorter average plant height than the random locations. Two-sample variance tests suggested significantly less variance for both Henslow’s Sparrows and Grasshopper Sparrows for maximum plant height in comparison to the random sites.
Vyas, N.B.; Kuenzel, W.J.; Hill, E.F.; Sauer, J.R.
Migratory white-throated sparrows (Zonotrichia albicollis) were exposed to acephate (acetylphosphoramidothioic acid O,S-dimethyl ester), an organophosphorus pesticide, to determine its effects on migratory orientation and behavior. Birds were also exposed to polarizer sheets to determine the mechanism by which acephate may affect migratory orientation. Adult birds exposed to 256 ppm acephate a.i. were not able to establish a preferred migratory orientation and exhibited random activity. All juvenile treatment groups displayed a seasonally correct southward migratory orientation. We hypothesize that acephate may have produced aberrant migratory behavior by affecting the memory of the migratory route and wintering ground. This experiment reveals that an environmentally relevant concentration of a common organophosphorus pesticide can alter migratory orientation, but its effect is markedly different between adult and juvenile sparrows. Results suggest that the survival of free-flying adult passerine migrants may be compromised following organophosphorus pesticide exposure.
Maier, Kristen; Walton, Rod; Kasper, Peter; /Fermilab
Henslow's Sparrows are endangered prairie birds, and Grasshopper Sparrows are considered rare prairie birds. Both of these birds were abundant in Illinois, but their populations have been declining due to loss of the grasslands. This begins an ongoing study of the birds habitat so Fermilab can develop a land management plan for the Henslow's and Grasshoppers. The Henslow's were found at ten sites and Grasshoppers at eight sites. Once the birds were located, the vegetation at their sites was studied. Measurements of the maximum plant height, average plant height, and duff height were taken and estimates of the percent of grass, forbs, duff, and bare ground were recorded for each square meter studied. The same measurements were taken at ten random grassland sites on Fermilab property. Several t-tests were performed on the data, and it was found that both Henslow's Sparrows and Grasshopper Sparrows preferred areas with a larger percentage of grass than random areas. Henslow's also preferred areas with less bare ground than random areas, while Grasshoppers preferred areas with more bare ground than random areas. In addition, Grasshopper Sparrows preferred a lower percentage of forbs than was found in random areas and a shorter average plant height than the random locations. Two-sample variance tests suggested significantly less variance for both Henslow's Sparrows and Grasshopper Sparrows for maximum plant height in comparison to the random sites. For both birds, the test suggested a significant difference in the variance of the percentage of bare ground compared to random sites, but only the Grasshopper Sparrow showed significance in the variation in the percentage of forbs.
Prather, Jf; Peters, S; Mooney, R; Nowicki, S
Both sensory and motor mechanisms can constrain behavioral performance. Sensory mechanisms may be especially important for constraining behaviors that depend on experience, such as learned birdsongs. Swamp sparrows learn to sing by imitating the song of a tutor, but sparrows fail to accurately imitate artificial tutor songs with abnormally accelerated trills, instead singing brief and rapid trills interrupted by silent gaps. This "broken syntax" has been proposed to arise from vocal-motor limitations. Here we consider whether sensory limitations exist that could also contribute to broken syntax. We tested this idea by recording auditory-evoked activity of sensorimotor neurons in the swamp sparrow's brain that are known to be important for the learning, performance and perception of song. In freely behaving adult sparrows that sang songs with normal syntax, neurons were detected that exhibited precisely time-locked activity to each repetition of the syllable in a trill when presented at a natural rate. Those cells failed to faithfully follow syllables presented at an accelerated rate, however, and their failure to respond to consecutive syllables increased as a function of trill rate. This "flickering" auditory representation in animals performing normal syntax reveals a central constraint on the sensory processing of rapid trills. Furthermore, because these neurons are implicated in both song learning and perception, and because auditory flickering began to occur at accelerated trill rates previously associated with the emergence of broken song syntax, these sensory constraints may contribute to the emergence of broken syntax.
Weisglas-Kuperus, Nynke; Vreugdenhil, Hestien J. I.; Mulder, Paul G. H.
The aim of the review of D.V. Cicchetti, A.S. Kaufman, and S.S. Sparrow (funded by the General Electric Company; this issue) is to "evaluate [the] literature relating the effects of prenatal and postnatal exposure to polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) upon neurobehavioral, health-related, and cognitive deficits in neonates, developing infants,…
Harvey, Neal R
This briefing describes recent work undertaken on the Sparrow Project and results of this work. It describes experiments comparing the use of Genie with 2 classes with 3 classes for the problem of ship delineation. It also describes some preliminary work in the area of the optimization of segmentation techniques.
Ait Bamai, Yu; Shibata, Eiji; Saito, Ikue; Araki, Atsuko; Kanazawa, Ayako; Morimoto, Kanehisa; Nakayama, Kunio; Tanaka, Masatoshi; Takigawa, Tomoko; Yoshimura, Takesumi; Chikara, Hisao; Saijo, Yasuaki; Kishi, Reiko
Although an association between exposure to phthalates in house dust and childhood asthma or allergies has been reported in recent years, there have been no reports of these associations focusing on both adults and children. We aimed to investigate the relationships between phthalate levels in Japanese dwellings and the prevalence of asthma and allergies in both children and adult inhabitants in a cross-sectional study. The levels of seven phthalates in floor dust and multi-surface dust in 156 single-family homes were measured. According to a self-reported questionnaire, the prevalence of bronchial asthma, allergic rhinitis, allergic conjunctivitis, and atopic dermatitis in the 2 years preceding the study was 4.7%, 18.6%, 7.6%, and 10.3%, respectively. After evaluating the interaction effects of age and exposure categories with generalized liner mixed models, interaction effects were obtained for DiNP and bronchial asthma in adults (Pinteraction=0.028) and for DMP and allergic rhinitis in children (Pinteraction=0.015). Although not statistically significant, children had higher ORs of allergic rhinitis for DiNP, allergic conjunctivitis for DEHP, and atopic dermatitis for DiBP and BBzP than adults, and liner associations were observed (Ptrend<0.05). On the other hand, adults had a higher OR for atopic dermatitis and DEHP compared to children. No significant associations were found in phthalates levels collected from multi-surfaces. This study suggests that the levels of DMP, DEHP, DiBP, and BBzP in floor dust were associated with the prevalence of allergic rhinitis, conjunctivitis, and atopic dermatitis in children, and children are more vulnerable to phthalate exposure via household floor dust than are adults. The results from this study were shown by cross-sectional nature of the analyses and elaborate assessments for metabolism of phthalates were not considered. Further studies are needed to advance our understanding of phthalate toxicity.
Vijayaraghavan, Maya; Jacobs, Elizabeth A; Seligman, Hilary; Fernandez, Alicia
Limited data exist on whether structural factors associated with poverty such as inadequate housing and food insecurity affect diabetes care. In a sample of low-income participants with diabetes (N=711), we sought to determine if housing instability was associated with lower diabetes self-efficacy, and whether this relationship was mediated by food insecurity. We ordered housing from most to least stable. We observed a linear decrease in diabetes self-efficacy as housing instability increased (p<.01). After adjusting for age, sex, race/ethnicity, and alcohol or substance use, adults lacking a usual place to stay had lower self-efficacy than those who owned their own home (ß-coefficient -0.94, 95% CI -1.88, -0.01). Food insecurity mediated the association between housing instability and diabetes self-efficacy (ß-coefficient -0.64, 95% CI -1.57, 0.31). Our findings suggest that inadequate access to food lowers self-efficacy among adults with diabetes, and supports provision of food to unstably housed adults as part of diabetes care.
Lankhorst, A J; ter Laak, M P; van Laar, T J; van Meeteren, N L; de Groot, J C; Schrama, L H; Hamers, F P; Gispen, W H
To date, most research performed in the area of spinal cord injury focuses on treatments designed to either prevent spreading lesion (secondary injury) or to enhance outgrowth of long descending and ascending fiber tracts around or through the lesion. In the last decade, however, several authors have shown that it is possible to enhance locomotor function after spinal cord injury in both animals and patients using specific training paradigms. As a first step towards combining such training paradigms with pharmacotherapy, we evaluated recovery of function in adult rats sustaining a spinal cord contusion injury (MASCIS device, 12.5 mm at T8), either housed in an enriched environment or in standard cages (n = 15 in both groups). The animals in the enriched environment were stimulated to increase their locomotor activity by placing water and food on opposite sides of the cage. As extra stimuli, a running wheel and several other objects were added to the cage. We show that exposure to the enriched environment improves gross and fine locomotor recovery as measured by the Basso, Beattie, and Bresnahan (BBB) locomotor rating scale, the BBB subscale, the Gridwalk, and the Thoracolumbar height test. However, no group differences were found on our electrophysiological parameters nor on the amount of spared white matter. These data justify further studies on enriched housing and more controlled exercise training, with their use as potential additive to pharmacological intervention.
Shiue, Ivy; Bramley, Glen
Housing conditions affect occupants continuously, and health interventions have shown a positive association between housing investment or improvement and occupant's health. However, the sources of the housing problems were less understood. Since it was observed that lead dust and chloroanisoles released from housing (materials) as indoor pollutants affected child's health, we now aimed to examine the relationships among built year, environmental chemicals and individual health in adults in a national and population-based setting. Data were retrieved from the US National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey, 2009-2010, including demographics, housing characteristics, self-reported health status, biomarkers and blood and urinary chemical concentrations. Adults aged 20 and above were included for statistical analysis (n = 5,793). Analysis involved chi-square test, t test, and survey-weighted general linear regression and logistic regression modelling. People who resided in older housing built before 1990 tended to report chronic bronchitis, liver problems, stroke, heart failure, diabetes, asthma and emphysema. Higher values in HDL cholesterol, blood lead and blood cadmium and having positive responses of hepatitis A, B, C and E antibodies among occupants were also observed. Furthermore, higher environmental chemical concentrations related to old housing including urinary cadmium, cobalt, platinum, mercury, 2,5-dichlorophenol and 2,4-dichlorophenol concentrations and mono-cyclohexyl phthalate and mono-isobutyl phthalate metabolites were shown in occupants as well. Older housing (≥30 years) seemed to contribute to the amount of environmental chemicals that affected human health. Regular monitoring, upgrading and renovation of housing to remove environmental chemicals and policy to support people in deprived situations against environmental injustice would be needed.
Chambers, Earle C; Pichardo, Margaret S; Rosenbaum, Emily
Sleep is implicated in the risk of many chronic diseases; however, little is known about the living conditions that influence sleep. In this study of 371 low-income Latino residents, household crowding was associated with reduced odds of long sleep duration relative to average and short sleep duration. Neighborhood disorder and perceived building problems were associated with more sleep disturbances and poor sleep quality. Building problems were associated with prolonged sleep latency. There was a significant cumulative effect of adverse housing and neighborhood conditions on sleep outcomes. These results show that adverse conditions of both the housing and neighborhood environments are associated with poor sleep outcomes.
Chambers, Earle; Pichardo, Margaret S.; Rosenbaum, Emily
Sleep is implicated in the risk of many chronic diseases, however, little is known about the living conditions that influence sleep. In this study of 371 low-income Latino residents, household crowding was associated with reduced odds of long sleep duration relative to average and short sleep duration. Neighborhood disorder and perceived building problems were associated with more sleep disturbances and poor sleep quality. Building problems were associated with prolonged sleep latency. There was a significant cumulative effect of adverse housing and neighborhood conditions on sleep outcomes. These results show that adverse conditions of both the housing and neighborhood environments are associated with poor sleep outcomes. PMID:25386692
Mansell, Jim; Beadle-Brown, Julie
Background: The purpose of this review was to evaluate the available research on the quality and costs of dispersed community-based housing when compared with clustered housing. Methods: Searches against specified criteria yielded 19 papers based on 10 studies presenting data comparing dispersed housing with some kind of clustered housing (village…
The Musca domestica salivary gland hypertrophy virus (MdSGHV) is a newly characterized, double stranded DNA virus that replicates in the salivary glands of infected adult house flies. Transmission of this non-occluded, enveloped virus within feral populations of M. domestica is believed to be media...
Stauffer, G.E.; Diefenbach, D.R.; Marshall, M.R.; Brauning, D.W.
Grasslands resulting from surface mine reclamation support grassland songbird populations in several midwestern and eastern states in the United States, especially where reclaimed mines are large (>1,000ha). However, most reclaimed surface mines in Pennsylvania are small (<200ha), and nest success is unknown. We evaluated nest success of grasshopper (Ammodramus savannarum), Henslow's (A. henslowii), and Savannah sparrows (Passerculus sandwichensis) on 4 reclaimed surface mines (50-180ha) in western Pennsylvania, USA from 2006 to 2007. Overall nest success based on mean covariate values was 0.435 (95% CI = 0.376-0.504) for grasshopper sparrows, 0.396 (95% CI = 0.295-0.533) for Henslow's sparrows, and 0.158 (95% CI = 0.063-0.392) for Savannah sparrows. These estimates of nest success are comparable to those on larger reclaimed mines and other habitats. Grasshopper and Henslow's sparrow nests that were well concealed were less likely to fail than highly visible nests (??visible = -0.028, CI = -0.051 to -0.005 for grasshopper sparrows; ??visible = -0.063, CI = -0.112 to -0.014 for Henslow's sparrows), and nests in areas with surrounding deep litter were more likely to fail than nests in areas with shallow litter (??litterD = -0.145, CI = -0.335 to 0.045 for grasshopper sparrows; ??litterD = -0.676, CI = -1.187 to -0.116 for Henslow's sparrows). Savannah sparrow nests in areas with high visual obstruction by vegetation were less likely to fail than nests in areas with sparse and short vegetation (??VisOb = 0.048, CI = 0.006-0.091). Daily probability of survival for grasshopper sparrow nests was greatest early and late in the breeding season, and Savannah sparrow nest survival followed a decreasing linear trend. Nest survival of Henslow's sparrows was greater on warm days (??temp = 0.197, CI = 0.014-0.379), whereas for Savannah sparrows nest survival decreased on warm days and on days with rain, but for Savannah sparrows confidence intervals of weather effects included
Patel, Preeyam S; Kearney, John F
Currently, ∼20% of the global population suffers from an allergic disorder. Allergies and asthma occur at higher rates in developed and industrialized countries. It is clear that many human atopic diseases are initiated neonatally and herald more severe IgE-mediated disorders, including allergic asthma, which is driven by the priming of Th2 effector T cells. The hygiene hypothesis attempts to link the increased excessively sanitary conditions early in life to a default Th2 response and increasing allergic phenomena. Despite the substantial involvement of IgE Abs in such conditions, little attention has been paid to the effects of early microbial exposure on the B cell repertoire prior to the initiation of these diseases. In this study, we use Ab-binding assays to demonstrate that Streptococcus pneumoniae and house dust mite (HDM) bear similar phosphorylcholine (PC) epitopes. Neonatal C57BL/6 mice immunized with a PC-bearing pneumococcal vaccine expressed increased frequencies of PC-specific B cells in the lungs following sensitizing exposure to HDM as adults. Anti-PC IgM Abs in the lung decreased the interaction of HDM with pulmonary APCs and were affiliated with lowered allergy-associated cell infiltration into the lung, IgE production, development of airway hyperresponsiveness, and Th2 T cell priming. Thus, exposure of neonatal mice to PC-bearing pneumococci significantly reduced the development of HDM-induced allergic disease during adult life. Our findings demonstrate that B cells generated against conserved epitopes expressed by bacteria, encountered early in life, are also protective against the development of allergic disease during adult life.
Tsai, Jack; Mares, Alvin S; Rosenheck, Robert A
There is limited consensus on the critical domains of housing satisfaction among chronically homeless adults and little information on changes in housing satisfaction over time or whether housing satisfaction at initial entry into housing is correlated with subsequent subjective well-being or other outcomes. The current study tracked housing satisfaction over a 2-year period in a multi-site supported housing initiative and examined the predictive value of clients' housing satisfaction when they were first housed on various subjective and functional outcomes. A total of 756 participants from 11 sites were enrolled in the study. Six domains of housing satisfaction were identified: good environment, control and consumer choice, physical quality, geographic proximity to desirable resources, positive case manager contact, and frequency of landlord interaction. Over 2 years, there were slight declines in housing satisfaction on physical quality of housing and satisfaction with case manager contact, and an increase in satisfaction with landlord interaction. Consistent with some previous research, housing satisfaction was not predictive of housing tenure, clinical outcomes, or duration of program participation. While becoming housed is a significant gain for chronically homeless people, their satisfaction with housing did not predict functional outcomes.
Preston, Stephen D.; Alexander, Richard B.; Woodside, Michael D.; Hamilton, Pixie A.
The information provided here is intended to assist water-resources managers with interpretation of the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) SPARROW model and its products. SPARROW models can be used to explain spatial patterns in monitored stream-water quality in relation to human activities and natural processes as defined by detailed geospatial information. Previous SPARROW applications have identified the sources and transport of nutrients in the Mississippi River basin, Chesapeake Bay watershed, and other major drainages of the United States. New SPARROW models with improved accuracy and interpretability are now being developed by the USGS National Water Quality Assessment (NAWQA) Program for six major regions of the conterminous United States. These new SPARROW models are based on updated geospatial data and stream-monitoring records from local, State, and other federal agencies.
Dobbins, Sarah K; Cruz, Marissa; Shah, Saima; Abt, Lyndsey; Moore, Jamie; Bamberger, Joshua
A San Francisco study conducted in 2008 showed that the permanent supportive housing program, Direct Access to Housing, dramatically decreased the risk of death in people living with HIV. In our study, we compared the health care utilization patterns and HIV-related biological markers of formerly homeless adults with HIV before and during two types of permanent supportive housing: (a) housing with on-site nursing care for residents, and (b) housing without on-site nursing care. Using nearest-neighbor matching with propensity scoring, the difference in outcomes was calculated. In the matched analysis, adjusted for adherence to combination antiretroviral therapy, people housed at sites with nurses had 4.8 fewer emergency department visits per person (SE: 1.53, p < .01), and they had an increased mean CD4+ T cell count (101.14 cells per person [SE: 55.10, p < .05]) compared to those who lived at sites without nurses.
Prather, JF; Peters, S; Mooney, R; Nowicki, S
Both sensory and motor mechanisms can constrain behavioral performance. Sensory mechanisms may be especially important for constraining behaviors that depend on experience, such as learned birdsongs. Swamp sparrows learn to sing by imitating the song of a tutor, but sparrows fail to accurately imitate artificial tutor songs with abnormally accelerated trills, instead singing brief and rapid trills interrupted by silent gaps. This “broken syntax” has been proposed to arise from vocal-motor limitations. Here we consider whether sensory limitations exist that could also contribute to broken syntax. We tested this idea by recording auditory-evoked activity of sensorimotor neurons in the swamp sparrow’s brain that are known to be important for the learning, performance and perception of song. In freely behaving adult sparrows that sang songs with normal syntax, neurons were detected that exhibited precisely time-locked activity to each repetition of the syllable in a trill when presented at a natural rate. Those cells failed to faithfully follow syllables presented at an accelerated rate, however, and their failure to respond to consecutive syllables increased as a function of trill rate. This “flickering” auditory representation in animals performing normal syntax reveals a central constraint on the sensory processing of rapid trills. Furthermore, because these neurons are implicated in both song learning and perception, and because auditory flickering began to occur at accelerated trill rates previously associated with the emergence of broken song syntax, these sensory constraints may contribute to the emergence of broken syntax. PMID:23976787
Maldonado, Karin Evelyn; Cavieres, Grisel; Veloso, Claudio; Canals, Mauricio; Sabat, Pablo
A large number of physiological acclimation studies assume that flexibility in a certain trait is both adaptive and functionally important for organisms in their natural environment; however, it is not clear how an organism's capacity for temperature acclimation translates to the seasonal acclimatization that these organisms must accomplish. To elucidate this relationship, we measured BMR and TEWL rates in both field-acclimatized and laboratory-acclimated adult rufous-collared sparrows (Zonotrichia capensis). Measurements in field-acclimatized birds were taken during the winter and summer seasons; in the laboratory-acclimated birds, we took our measurements following 4 weeks at either 15 or 30 degrees C. Although BMR and TEWL rates did not differ between winter and summer in the field-acclimatized birds, laboratory-acclimated birds exposed to 15 degrees C exhibited both a higher BMR and TEWL rate when compared to the birds acclimated to 30 degrees C and the field-acclimatized birds. Because organ masses seem to be similar between field and cold-acclimated birds whereas BMR is higher in cold-acclimated birds, the variability in BMR cannot be explained completely by adjustments in organ masses. Our findings suggest that, although rufous-collared sparrows can exhibit thermal acclimation of physiological traits, sparrows do not use this capacity to cope with minor to moderate fluctuations in environmental conditions. Our data support the hypothesis that physiological flexibility in energetic traits is a common feature of avian metabolism.
Giralt, M; Armario, A
Although the influence of housing conditions on the physiological response to stress has been extensively studied for several years, no attempts have been made to investigate the effect of this variable on the capacity for adaptation to chronic stress. To this end, adult male rats were housed either individually or in groups of four per cage and subjected to 2 hr of daily immobilization stress for 14 days. Housing did not influence any of the physiological variables measured either in unstressed or in stressed rats except the corticosterone response to stress which was higher in individually housed rats. Of the behavioral measures, individual housing significantly decreased defecation rate in the novel environment. Other behavioral measures were not influenced by housing. Chronic stress significantly reduced ambulation but no significant interaction between housing and chronic stress was observed. Taken together, these data indicate that a short period of individual housing did not affect the physiological and behavioral consequences of repeated exposure to chronic stress.
Tach, Laura; Jacoby, Sara; Wiebe, Douglas J.; Guerra, Terry; Richmond, Therese S.
The ACHIEVEability model of affordable housing aims to promote self-sufficiency by requiring enrollment in postsecondary education in exchange for subsidized housing. In this study, we exploit the quasi random assignment of ACHIEVEability participants (N = 84) to subsidized housing units to evaluate whether microneighborhood environments moderated participants’ progress in postsecondary education. Participants progressed in their educational pursuits in line with program requirements, earning about 12 college credits per year. Neighborhood block group characteristics moderated this progress. Participants who were assigned to housing located in poorer, more violent, and less educated block groups earned credits at a significantly slower rate than participants assigned housing in more advantaged block groups. Our results suggest that the micro environments immediately surrounding residents of subsidized housing matter, even if they are situated within broader contexts of spatial and personal disadvantage. PMID:27570434
Tach, Laura; Jacoby, Sara; Wiebe, Douglas J; Guerra, Terry; Richmond, Therese S
The ACHIEVEability model of affordable housing aims to promote self-sufficiency by requiring enrollment in postsecondary education in exchange for subsidized housing. In this study, we exploit the quasi random assignment of ACHIEVEability participants (N = 84) to subsidized housing units to evaluate whether microneighborhood environments moderated participants' progress in postsecondary education. Participants progressed in their educational pursuits in line with program requirements, earning about 12 college credits per year. Neighborhood block group characteristics moderated this progress. Participants who were assigned to housing located in poorer, more violent, and less educated block groups earned credits at a significantly slower rate than participants assigned housing in more advantaged block groups. Our results suggest that the micro environments immediately surrounding residents of subsidized housing matter, even if they are situated within broader contexts of spatial and personal disadvantage.
Henwood, Benjamin F; Matejkowski, Jason; Stefancic, Ana; Lukens, Jonathan M
This 1-year longitudinal study of adults who have recently transitioned from homelessness to Permanent Supportive Housing (PSH) focuses on quality of life as a primary outcome of interest. Eighty of 103 new tenants participated in structured interviews at the time of entry into their new home and at 12-months post-housing. t-tests assessed differences in community participation and quality of life measures at the 2 time points. Mixed effects models examined the impact of community participation on quality of life. Results show that time in independent housing was significantly associated with several domains of quality of life. Symptom severity was also significantly and negatively related to quality of life domains. Community participation was significantly related to frequency of social contacts only. These findings suggest that community participation is not critical to improving quality of life, and that despite concerns that individuals may feel isolated and lonely when living independently, satisfaction with one׳s living situation and family relationships nevertheless improves with housing tenure.
...), TekSystems, URS Corporation, B More Industrial Services LLC, and Recycling & Treatment Technologies of... firm. The Department has received information that workers leased from Recycling & Treatment... Sparrows Point LLC. The Department has determined that these workers from Recycling &...
Ahlering, M.A.; Johnson, D.H.; Faaborg, J.
Although critical to habitat and population management, the proximate cues that birds use to establish territories are largely unknown. Understanding these cues is important for birds, such as many grassland birds, that exhibit high annual variability in population density and make new habitat-selection decisions annually. Identifying the actual cues used is difficult in the field, but the factors associated with the arrival densities of birds can help uncover variables that are involved in or correlated with cues used for selection. During the summers of 2002-2004, we investigated how weather and local vegetation factors were related to arrival densities of Grasshopper Sparrows (Ammodramus savannarum) and Baird's Sparrows (A. bairdii) at three locations across North Dakota and Saskatchewan. Spring densities of Grasshopper Sparrows were positively correlated with concurrent May precipitation, whereas densities of Baird's Sparrows were negatively correlated with the previous winter's snowfall. We used a model-selection approach to evaluate the vegetation characteristics associated with arrival densities of birds. Grasshopper Sparrow densities showed a strong negative relationship to woody cover, and Baird's Sparrow densities showed a negative relationship to vegetation height and vegetation density near the ground. Our results provide a first detailed look at habitat and weather associations immediately after arrival in spring and an important first step in uncovering factors that may be involved in habitat selection in two grassland species. Received 13 August 2008, accepted 20 April 2009. ?? The American Ornithologists' Union, 2009.
Kumar, N H V; Nayduch, D
The adult house fly Musca domestica (L.) (Diptera: Muscidae) can disseminate bacteria from microbe-rich substrates to areas in which humans and domesticated animals reside. Because bacterial abundance fluctuates widely across substrates, flies encounter and ingest varying amounts of bacteria. This study investigated the dose-dependent survival of bacteria in house flies. Flies were fed four different 'doses' of green fluorescent protein (GFP)-expressing Escherichia coli (GFP E. coli) (very low, low, medium, high) and survival was determined at 1, 4, 10 and 22 h post-ingestion by culture and epifluorescent microscopy. Over 22 h, the decline in GFP E. coli was significant in all treatments (P < 0.04) except the very low dose treatment (P = 0.235). Change in survival (ΔS) did not differ between flies fed low and very low doses of bacteria across all time-points, although ΔS in both treatments differed from that in flies fed high and medium doses of bacteria at several time-points. At 4, 10 and 22 h, GFP E. coli ΔS significantly differed between medium and high dose-fed flies. A threshold dose, above which bacteria are detected and destroyed by house flies, may exist and is likely to be immune-mediated. Understanding dose-dependent bacterial survival in flies can help in predicting bacteria transmission potential.
El-Bassiony, G M; Luizzi, V; Nguyen, D; Stoffolano, J G; Purdy, A E
The present study was designed to test the hypothesis that house flies may be capable of specifically harbouring ingested Vibrio cholerae in their digestive tracts. Flies were continuously fed green fluorescent protein (GFP)-labelled, non-O1/non-O139 environmental strains of V. cholerae. Bacterial burdens were quantitatively measured using plate counts and localization was directly observed using confocal microscopy. Vibrio cholerae were present in the fly alimentary canal after just 4 h, and reached a plateau of ∼10(7) colony-forming units (CFU)/fly after 5 days in those flies most tolerant of the pathogen. However, individual flies were resistant to the pathogen: one or more flies were found to carry < 180 V. cholerae CFU at each time-point examined. In flies carrying V. cholerae, the pathogen was predominantly localized to the midgut rather than the rectal space or crop. The proportion of house flies carrying V. cholerae in the midgut was dose-dependent: the continuous ingestion of a concentrated, freshly prepared dose of V. cholerae increased the likelihood that fluorescent cells would be observed. However, V. cholerae may be a transient inhabitant of the house fly. This work represents the first demonstration that V. cholerae can inhabit the house fly midgut, and provides a platform for future studies of host, pathogen and environmental mediators of the successful colonization of this disease vector.
Hauser, Thomas; Klaus, Fabienne; Lipp, Hans-Peter; Amrein, Irmgard
Background Studies of adult hippocampal neurogenesis (AHN) in laboratory rodents have raised hopes for therapeutic interventions in neurodegenerative diseases and mood disorders, as AHN can be modulated by physical exercise, stress and environmental changes in these animals. Since it is not known whether cell proliferation and neurogenesis in wild living mice can be experimentally changed, this study investigates the responsiveness of AHN to voluntary running and to environmental change in wild caught long-tailed wood mice (Apodemus sylvaticus). Results Statistical analyses show that running had no impact on cell proliferation (p = 0.44), neurogenesis (p = 0.94) or survival of newly born neurons (p = 0.58). Likewise, housing in the laboratory has no effect on AHN. In addition, interindividual differences in the level of neurogenesis are not related to interindividual differences of running wheel performance (rs = -0.09, p = 0.79). There is a correlation between the number of proliferating cells and the number of cells of neuronal lineage (rs = 0.63, p < 0.001) and the number of pyknotic cells (rs = 0.5, p = 0.009), respectively. Conclusion Plasticity of adult neurogenesis is an established feature in strains of house mice and brown rats. Here, we demonstrate that voluntary running and environmental changes which are effective in house mice and brown rats cannot influence AHN in long-tailed wood mice. This indicates that in wild long-tailed wood mice different regulatory mechanisms act on cell proliferation and neurogenesis. If this difference reflects a species-specific adaptation or a broader adaptive strategy to a natural vs. domestic environment is unknown. PMID:19419549
Zheng, Wei-Hong; Li, Ming; Liu, Jin-Song; Shao, Shu-Li
Acclimatization to winter conditions is an essential prerequisite for survival of small passerines of the northern temperate zone. Changes in photoperiod, ambient temperature and food availability trigger seasonal acclimatization in physiology and behavior of many birds. In the present study, seasonal adjustments in several physiological, hormonal, and biochemical markers were examined in wild-captured Eurasian tree sparrows (Passer montanus) from the Heilongjiang Province in China. In winter sparrows had higher body mass and basal metabolic rate (BMR). Consistently, the dry mass of liver, heart, gizzard, small intestine, large intestine and total digestive tract were higher in winter than in that in summer. The contents of mitochondrial protein in liver, and state-4 respiration and cytochrome c oxidase (COX) activity in liver and muscle increased significantly in winter. Circulating level of serum triiodothyronine (T3) was significantly higher in winter than in summer. Together, these data suggest that tree sparrows mainly coped with cold by enhancing thermogenic capacities through increased organ masses and heightened activity of respiratory enzymes activities. The results support the view that prominent winter increases in BMR are manifestations of winter acclimatization in tree sparrows and that seasonal variation in metabolism in sparrows is similar to that in other small temperate-wintering birds.
Curnutt, J.L.; Mayer, A.L.; Brooks, T.M.; Manne, L.; Bass, O.L.; Fleming, D.M.; Philip, Nott M.; Pimm, S.L.
The Cape Sable seaside-sparrow (Ammodramus maritimus mirabilis) has disappeared from its only known breeding areas episodically since its discovery early this century. Systematic surveys across its range in the southern Everglades find the sparrow's range to be fragmented into six subpopulations. The sparrow population decreased by 58% between 1992 and 1995, with the near extinction of the western half of the population and the temporary local extinction of some eastern populations. Other similar grassland sparrows have populations that vary considerably from year to year. Yet the decline in the western subpopulation and the local extinction of some of the peripheral populations cannot be explained by natural variability alone. Hurricane Andrew passed over several subpopulations prior to the particularly poor year of 1993. However, the geographical and temporal patterns of subpopulation decline are not consistent with what would be expected following a hurricane. Frequent fires prevent successful breeding as does flooding during the breeding season. Better management can prevent frequent fires and episodic flooding. However, the long-term survival of the sparrow depends on managing the unanticipated risks that attend its small, fragmented population.
Robbins, C.S.; Quay, Thomas; Funderberg, John B.=; Lee, David S.; Potter, Eloise F.; Robbins, C.S.
The majority of the nine presently recognized races of the Seaside Sparrow (Ammospiza maritima) are so similar to neighboring races that individual birds outside their known breeding range cannot be subspecifically identified with certainty. The northern race, A. m. maritima, is partially migratory, with most individuals departing in autumn from Chesapeake Bay and from all the coastal marshes that lie to the north of the mouth of this bay. No banded bird has been recaptured in winter south of its breeding locality, however, so even the major wintering ground of this subspecies cannot be defined. The other subspecies are presumed to be primarily sedentary. Median arrival and departure dates at Fairfield, Connecticut, are 18 May and 19 September. On Long Island, New York, the spring peak occurs in the third week of May, and the autumn peak in mid-October. Postbreeding wanderers of unknown origin move north and east in August and September to the coastal marshes of Maine, New Brunswick, and Nova Scotia. The remarkably few records away from tidewater are from North Carolina, eastern Pennsylvania, the lower Hudson River, and eastern Massachusetts.
Background Individuals with mental illnesses are overrepresented among the homeless. Housing First (HF) has been shown to promote positive outcomes in this population. However, key questions remain unresolved, including: how to match support services to client needs, the benefits of housing in scattered sites versus single congregate building, and the effectiveness of HF with individuals actively using substances. The present study aimed to recruit two samples of homeless mentally ill participants who differed in the complexity of their needs. Study details, including recruitment, randomization, and follow-up, are presented. Methods Eligibility was based on homeless status and current mental disorder. Participants were classified as either moderate needs (MN) or high needs (HN). Those with MN were randomized to HF with Intensive Case Management (HF-ICM) or usual care. Those with HN were randomized to HF with Assertive Community Treatment (HF-ACT), congregate housing with support, or usual care. Participants were interviewed every 3 months for 2 years. Separate consent was sought to access administrative data. Results Participants met eligibility for either MN (n = 200) or HN (n = 297) and were randomized accordingly. Both samples were primarily male and white. Compared to participants designated MN, HN participants had higher rates of hospitalization for psychiatric reasons prior to randomization, were younger at the time of recruitment, younger when first homeless, more likely to meet criteria for substance dependence, and less likely to have completed high school. Across all study arms, between 92% and 100% of participants were followed over 24 months post-randomization. Minimal significant differences were found between study arms following randomization. 438 participants (88%) provided consent to access administrative data. Conclusion The study successfully recruited participants meeting criteria for homelessness and current mental disorder. Both MN
Copeland, Darcy A; Heilemann, Marysue V
Family members in the United States--especially mothers--are frequently caregivers, and provide housing for their adult relatives and children with mental illness. They often do so with little support from the mental health system. The purpose of this analysis was to explore mothers' experiences related to housing options available to their adult children with a mental illness and a history of violence (MIHV) toward the mothers. The results of this study reveal a complex mixing of desires, feelings, internal factors, and external forces experienced by mothers of adult children with MIHV when considering whether or not these children can live in their homes. The findings from this study illuminate needs for greater familial involvement in mental health treatment decisions, respite for caregiving families, and housing as a crucial element of a comprehensive mental health treatment plan.
Riley, Elise D.; Shumway, Martha; Knight, Kelly R.; Guzman, David; Cohen, Jennifer; Weiser, Sheri D.
Background One of the most common causes of death among homeless and unstably housed women is acute intoxication where cocaine is present. While correlates of stimulant use have been determined in prior research, few studies have assessed risk factors of use specifically in this high-risk population. Methods We sampled biological women with a history of housing instability from community-based venues to participate in a cohort study. Baseline and 6-month follow-up data were used to determine the relative risk of stimulant use (crack cocaine, powder cocaine or methamphetamine) among individuals who did not use at baseline. Results Among 260 study participants, the median age was 47 years, 70% were women of color; 47% reported having unmet subsistence needs and 53% reported abstinence from stimulants at baseline. In analyses adjusting for baseline sociodemographics and drug treatment, the risk of using stimulants within 6 months was significantly higher among women who reported recent sexual violence (Adjusted Relative Risk [ARR] = 4.31; 95% CI:1.97–9.45), sleeping in a shelter or public place (ARR = 2.75; 95% CI:1.15–6.57), and using unprescribed opioid analgesics (ARR = 2.54; 95% CI:1.01–6.38). Conclusion We found that almost half of homeless and unstably housed women used stimulants at baseline and 14% of those who did not use began within 6 months. Addressing homelessness and sexual violence is critical to reduce stimulant use among impoverished women. PMID:26070454
Klaus, Fabienne; Hauser, Thomas; Lindholm, Anna K; Cameron, Heather A; Slomianka, Lutz; Lipp, Hans-Peter; Amrein, Irmgard
Adult hippocampal neurogenesis (AHN) of laboratory rodents is enhanced by physical exercise in a running wheel. However, little is known about modulation of AHN in wild-living rodent species. The finding that AHN cannot be modulated by voluntary exercise in wild wood mice suggests that AHN may be regulated differently under natural conditions than in laboratory adapted animals. In order to minimize genetic influences, we aimed to investigate the genetically closest wild-living relatives of laboratory mice. Here, C57BL/6 mice and F1 offspring of wild house mice (Mus musculus domesticus) were tested in two different running paradigms: voluntary running and running-for-food--a condition in which mice had to run for their daily allowance of food. In house mice, we found a non-significant trend towards increased numbers of proliferating cells and doublecortin-positive immature neurons in both voluntary runners and runners-for-food. Voluntary running in C57BL/6 mice resulted in a 30% increase in cell proliferation and a pronounced 70% increase in doublecortin-positive cells. C57BL/6 runners-for-food ran as much as voluntary runners, but they showed no enhancement of cell proliferation, a small increase in the number of doublecortin-positive cells and more pyknotic cells compared to controls. Taken together, these findings suggest that motivational aspects of running are critical determinants of the increased cell proliferation in C57BL/6 mice. In contrast, running has smaller and context-independent effects in house mice. The findings imply a difference in the regulation of AHN in C57BL/6 mice and their wild-derived conspecifics.
Logan, Jennifer L.; Frye, Alison; Pursell, Haley O.; Anderson-Nathe, Michael; Scholl, Juliana E.
Objectives Homeless young adults are exposed to multiple risk factors for HIV infection. We identified HIV risk behaviors and their correlates among homeless young adults in Portland, Oregon. Methods We conducted a community-based, cross-sectional survey of HIV risk behaviors among homeless young adults aged 18–25 years in 2010. Participants completed three study components: (1) an interviewer-administered survey of HIV risk behaviors; (2) a brief, client-centered HIV risk-based counseling session; and (3) rapid HIV testing. Results Among 208 participants, 45.8% identified as racial/ethnic minority groups, 63.8% were male, and 35.7% self-identified as nonheterosexual. Six participants, all from sexual minority groups, had positive HIV screening results (two newly identified, four previously known) for a seropositivity rate of 2.9%. Female sex, belonging to a sexual minority group, frequent traveling between cities, depression, and alcohol use to intoxication were significantly associated with unprotected sex in univariate analysis. Female sex and high perceived risk of HIV were significantly associated with unprotected sex in multivariate analysis. Conclusions Our findings support the need for enhanced HIV prevention interventions for homeless young adults. PMID:23633730
Seelman, Kristie L
Transgender and gender non-conforming people frequently experience discrimination, harassment, and marginalization across college and university campuses (Bilodeau, 2007; Finger, 2010; Rankin et al., 2010; Seelman et al., 2012). The minority stress model (Meyer, 2007) posits that experiences of discrimination often negatively impact the psychological wellbeing of minority groups. However, few scholars have examined whether college institutional climate factors-such as being denied access to bathrooms or gender-appropriate campus housing-are significantly associated with detrimental psychological outcomes for transgender people. Using the National Transgender Discrimination Survey, this study analyzes whether being denied access to these spaces is associated with lifetime suicide attempts, after controlling for interpersonal victimization by students or teachers. Findings from sequential logistic regression (N = 2,316) indicate that denial of access to either space had a significant relationship to suicidality, even after controlling for interpersonal victimization. This article discusses implications for higher education professionals and researchers.
Ruth, Janet M.
The greatest needs are for determining of the causes of significant declines where they occur, determining of the effects of various management activities on Cassin’s Sparrow throughout its range, improved assessments of population and trends, and a better understanding of the annual population and distribution dynamics of this species, which shows such dramatic annual distributional fluctuations.
Wen, Xiao Jun; Balluz, Lina
Despite the broad use of health-related quality of life (HRQOL) as one of the measurements to assess health status and effectiveness of health care and interventions, the impact of in-house mold exposure on HRQOL is unknown. The study described in this article examined the relationship between presence of visible in-house mold (PVIM) and HRQOL among adults. Data were analyzed from the 2005 and 2006 Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System (BRFSS) surveys that consisted of a random cross-sectional sample of 18,356 adults in four states. The authors examined the relationship between PVIM and three important indicators of the HRQOL by logistic regression analyses. Their results suggest that PVIM is independently associated with the indicators of HRQOL including mentally unhealthy, physically unhealthy, and total unhealthy days. Therefore, implementation of appropriate measures at the household level to eliminate or reduce in-house mold may improve individuals' HRQOL.
A recent systematic review and meta-analysis has shown the effect of indoor mildew odour on allergic rhinitis risk, but its relation to other common chronic health outcomes in adults has not been investigated. Therefore, it was aimed to examine the relationship of indoor mildew odour and common health outcomes in adults in a national and population-based setting. Data was retrieved from the United States National Health and Nutrition Examination Surveys, 2005-2006, including the available information on demographics, housing characteristics, self-reported health conditions and urinary concentrations of environmental chemicals. T test, chi-squared test and survey-weighted logistic regression modelling were performed. Of all American adults (n = 4979), 744 (15.1%) reported indoor mildew odour or musty smell in their households. People who reported indoor mildew odour or musty smell also reported poorer self-rated health, sleep complaints, chronic bronchitis, asthma attack, itchy rash, sneezing and poor vision. In addition, people who reported indoor mildew odour or musty smell also tended to reside in older housing that were built 20 years earlier. However, there were no significant statistical associations found between indoor mildew odour or musty smell and urinary concentrations of environmental chemicals, which was also found to be associated with old housing. People who lived in older housing with indoor mildew odour or musty smell tended to have chronic health problems. To protect occupants in old housing from chronic illnesses associated with indoor mildew odour, elimination of the odour sources should be explored in future research and therefore public health and housing programs. Graphical abstract Pathway from old housing to musty smell, environmental chemicals and then health outcomes.
Fang, Shona C.; Chen, Shan; Trachtenberg, Felicia; Rokicki, Slawa; Adamkiewicz, Gary; Levy, Douglas E.
Introduction Tobacco smoke exposure (TSE) in public multi-unit housing (MUH) is of concern. However, the validity of self-reports for determining TSE among non-smoking residents in such housing is unclear. Methods We analyzed data from 285 non-smoking public MUH residents living in non-smoking households in the Boston area. Participants were interviewed about personal TSE in various locations in the past 7 days and completed a diary of home TSE for 7 days. Self-reported TSE was validated against measurable saliva cotinine (lower limit of detection (LOD) 0.02 ng/ml) and airborne apartment nicotine (LOD 5 ng). Correlations, estimates of inter-measure agreement, and logistic regression assessed associations between self-reported TSE items and measurable cotinine and nicotine. Results Cotinine and nicotine levels were low in this sample (median = 0.026 ng/ml and 0.022 μg/m3, respectively). Prevalence of detectable personal TSE was 66.3% via self-report and 57.0% via measurable cotinine (median concentration among those with cotinine>LOD: 0.057 ng/ml), with poor agreement (kappa = 0.06; sensitivity = 68.9%; specificity = 37.1%). TSE in the home, car, and other peoples’ homes was weakly associated with cotinine levels (Spearman correlations rs = 0.15–0.25), while TSE in public places was not associated with cotinine. Among those with airborne nicotine and daily diary data (n = 161), a smaller proportion had household TSE via self-report (41.6%) compared with measurable airborne nicotine (53.4%) (median concentration among those with nicotine>LOD: 0.04 μg/m3) (kappa = 0.09, sensitivity = 46.5%, specificity = 62.7%). Conclusions Self-report alone was not adequate to identify individuals with TSE, as 31% with measurable cotinine and 53% with measurable nicotine did not report TSE. Self-report of TSE in private indoor spaces outside the home was most associated with measurable cotinine in this low-income non-smoking population. PMID:27171392
Ammer, F.K.; Wood, P.B.; McPherson, R.J.
Correct gender identification in monomorphic species is often difficult especially if males and females do not display obvious behavioral and breeding differences. We compared gender specific morphology and behavior with recently developed DNA techniques for gender identification in the monomorphic Grasshopper Sparrow (Ammodramus savannarum). Gender was ascertained with DNA in 213 individuals using the 2550F/2718R primer set and 3% agarose gel electrophoresis. Field observations using behavior and breeding characteristics to identify gender matched DNA analyses with 100% accuracy for adult males and females. Gender was identified with DNA for all captured juveniles that did not display gender specific traits or behaviors in the field. The molecular techniques used offered a high level of accuracy and may be useful in studies of dispersal mechanisms and winter assemblage composition in monomorphic species.
Vogel, Jennifer A.; Koford, Rolf R.; Otis, David L.
The presence of conspecific individuals may provide important cues about habitat quality for territorial songbirds. We tested the ability of a conspecific song playback system to attract Henslow’s sparrows to previously unoccupied restored habitat. We successfully attracted Heslow’s sparrows to 3 of 7 treatment plots using conspecific song playbacks and we found no Henslow’s sparrows in control plots. The addition of social cues using playback systems in restored grassland habitats may aid conservation efforts of Henslow’s sparrows to available habitat.
Rodriguez, Carlos I; Magcalas, Christy M; Barto, Daniel; Fink, Brandi C; Rice, James P; Bird, Clark W; Davies, Suzy; Pentkowski, Nathan S; Savage, Daniel D; Hamilton, Derek A
Persistent deficits in social behavior, motor behavior, and behavioral flexibility are among the major negative consequences associated with exposure to ethanol during prenatal development. Prior work from our laboratory has linked moderate prenatal alcohol exposure (PAE) in the rat to deficits in these behavioral domains, which depend upon the ventrolateral frontal cortex (Hamilton et al., 2014) . Manipulations of the social environment cause modifications of dendritic morphology and experience-dependent immediate early gene expression in ventrolateral frontal cortex (Hamilton et al., 2010) , and may yield positive behavioral outcomes following PAE. In the present study we evaluated the effects of housing PAE rats with non-exposed control rats on adult behavior. Rats of both sexes were either paired with a partner from the same prenatal treatment condition (ethanol or saccharin) or from the opposite condition (mixed housing condition). At four months of age (∼3 months after the housing manipulation commenced), social behavior, tongue protrusion, and behavioral flexibility in the Morris water task were measured as in (Hamilton et al., 2014) . The behavioral effects of moderate PAE were primarily limited to males and were not ameliorated by housing with a non-ethanol exposed partner. Unexpectedly, social behavior, motor behavior, and spatial flexibility were adversely affected in control rats housed with a PAE rat (i.e., in mixed housing), indicating that housing with a PAE rat has broad behavioral consequences beyond the social domain. These observations provide further evidence that moderate PAE negatively affects social behavior, and underscore the importance of considering potential negative effects of housing with PAE animals on the behavior of critical comparison groups.
Ahlering, M.A.; Johnson, D.H.; Faaborg, J.
Territorial songbirds generally use song to defend territories and attract mates, but conspecific song may also serve as a cue to attract other male songbirds to a breeding site. Although known to occur in some colonial and forest-associated species, only recently have investigators examined conspecific attraction in grassland species. We used a playback experiment to examine the possible role of conspecific attraction for males searching for potentially suitable breeding habitat in a grassland specialist, the Baird's Sparrow (Ammodramus bairdii). Experimental playback plots and control plots with similar landscape and vegetation characteristics were established at two sites in North Dakota. Baird's Sparrows colonized three of six experimental plots and none of six control plots. Males on experimental plots established territories adjacent to the playback stations and were sometimes observed counter-singing with the playback of conspecific songs. Vegetation characteristics were similar on all study plots, and did not explain differences in bird density on our treatment plots. Although we found that playback of conspecific songs attracted male Baird's Sparrows to previously unoccupied, potentially suitable habitat, further experiments are needed to examine the importance of conspecific attraction relative to other cues that birds may use, such as vegetation features. The conservation and management implications of conspecific attraction are not completely understood, but the presence of conspecifics should be considered as a potential cue in habitat selection by all species of birds. ?? 2006 The Author(s).
Akesson, Susanne; Morin, Jens; Muheim, Rachel; Ottosson, Ulf
Advanced spatial-learning adaptations have been shown for migratory songbirds, but it is not well known how the simple genetic program encoding migratory distance and direction in young birds translates to a navigation mechanism used by adults. A number of convenient cues are available to define latitude on the basis of geomagnetic and celestial information, but very few are useful to defining longitude. To investigate the effects of displacements across longitudes on orientation, we recorded orientation of adult and juvenile migratory white-crowned sparrows, Zonotrichia leucophrys gambelii, after passive longitudinal displacements, by ship, of 266-2862 km across high-arctic North America. After eastward displacement to the magnetic North Pole and then across the 0 degrees declination line, adults and juveniles abruptly shifted their orientation from the migratory direction to a direction that would lead back to the breeding area or to the normal migratory route, suggesting that the birds began compensating for the displacement by using geomagnetic cues alone or together with solar cues. In contrast to predictions by a simple genetic migration program, our experiments suggest that both adults and juveniles possess a navigation system based on a combination of celestial and geomagnetic information, possibly declination, to correct for eastward longitudinal displacements.
Schwarz, G.E.; Hoos, A.B.; Alexander, R.B.; Smith, R.A.
SPARROW (SPAtially Referenced Regressions On Watershed attributes) is a watershed modeling technique for relating water-quality measurements made at a network of monitoring stations to attributes of the watersheds containing the stations. The core of the model consists of a nonlinear regression equation describing the non-conservative transport of contaminants from point and diffuse sources on land to rivers and through the stream and river network. The model predicts contaminant flux, concentration, and yield in streams and has been used to evaluate alternative hypotheses about the important contaminant sources and watershed properties that control transport over large spatial scales. This report provides documentation for the SPARROW modeling technique and computer software to guide users in constructing and applying basic SPARROW models. The documentation gives details of the SPARROW software, including the input data and installation requirements, and guidance in the specification, calibration, and application of basic SPARROW models, as well as descriptions of the model output and its interpretation. The documentation is intended for both researchers and water-resource managers with interest in using the results of existing models and developing and applying new SPARROW models. The documentation of the model is presented in two parts. Part 1 provides a theoretical and practical introduction to SPARROW modeling techniques, which includes a discussion of the objectives, conceptual attributes, and model infrastructure of SPARROW. Part 1 also includes background on the commonly used model specifications and the methods for estimating and evaluating parameters, evaluating model fit, and generating water-quality predictions and measures of uncertainty. Part 2 provides a user's guide to SPARROW, which includes a discussion of the software architecture and details of the model input requirements and output files, graphs, and maps. The text documentation and computer
... SECURITY Coast Guard 33 CFR Part 117 RIN 1625-AA09 Drawbridge Operation Regulation; Bear Creek, Sparrows... Avenue) highway toll drawbridge across Bear Creek, mile 1.5, Sparrows Point, MD was replaced with a fixed... Bear Creek, mile 1.5 was removed and replaced with a fixed bridge in 1998. Prior to 1998, a...
Seaman, B.D.; Krementz, D.G.
Prescribed winter burning is a common practice in longleaf pine (Pinus palustris) to manage for red-cockaded woodpeckers (Picoides borealis). The effect of these burns on non-target animals is not well studied. Bachman's sparrows (Aimophila aestivalis) were captured in predominantly longleaf pine stands to be burned and not to be burned at Carolina Sandhills National Wildlife Refuge (CSNWR) and the Savannah River Site (SRS), South Carolina. Sparrows were marked with radio-transmitters and monitored daily. Before burning, daily movements did not differ among sites within or among study areas. Additionally, daily movements did not differ by sex or time within the breeding season. After prescribed burning, daily movements were longer for sparrows in burned stands than in unburned stands. All marked sparrows dispersed 1-3 days after a stand was burned and never returned. We found no evidence that dispersing sparrows successfully breed elsewhere. Bachman's sparrow survival rates and reproductive output after burning were lowered. The juxtaposition of seemingly suitable Bachman's sparrow habitat in relation to burned stands influenced both the duration and length of dispersal movements. Managers need to consider the proximity of available habitats when developing burning plans when managing for Bachman's sparrows.
Cooper, Hannah L F; Hunter-Jones, Josalin; Kelley, Mary E; Karnes, Conny; Haley, Danielle F; Ross, Zev; Rothenberg, Richard; Bonney, Loida E
USA is experiencing a paradigm shift in public housing policy: while policies used to place people who qualified for housing assistance into spatially concentrated housing complexes, they now seek to geographically disperse them, often to voucher-subsidized rental units in the private market. Programs that relocate residents from public housing complexes tend to move them to neighborhoods that are less impoverished and less violent. To date, studies have reached conflicting findings about the relationship between public housing relocations and depression among adult relocaters. The present longitudinal multilevel analysis tests the hypothesis that pre-/postrelocation improvements in local economic conditions, social disorder, and perceived community violence are associated with declines in depressive symptoms in a cohort of African-American adults; active substance misusers were oversampled. We tested this hypothesis in a cohort of 172 adults who were living in one of seven public housing complexes scheduled for relocation and demolition in Atlanta, GA; by design, 20% were dependent on substances and 50% misused substances but were not dependent. Baseline data captured prerelocation characteristics of participants; of the seven census tracts where they lived, three waves of postrelocation data were gathered approximately every 9 months thereafter. Surveys were administered at each wave to assess depressive symptoms measured using the Center for Epidemiologic Studies Depression Scale (CES-D), perceived community violence, and other individual-level covariates. Participants' home addresses were geocoded to census tracts at each wave, and administrative data sources were used to characterize tract-level economic disadvantage and social disorder. Hypotheses were tested using multilevel models. Between waves 1 and 2, participants experienced significant improvements in reported depressive symptoms and perceived community violence and in tract-level economic disadvantage
Gutman, Sharon A; Raphael-Greenfield, Emily I; Simon, Phyllis M
The purpose of this study was to determine if a housing transition program was feasible and acceptable to homeless clients with mental illness and substance use histories. Ten male residents of a homeless shelter participated in the 3-week housing intervention. The intervention used a DVD format with instructional videos, graphics, and opportunities for hands-on practice of functional skills in a simulated apartment environment. Outcome measures included goal attainment scale scores (GAS), satisfaction surveys, and case manager reports. Six of the 10 participants completed the program and achieved GAS scores at a greater level than expected at baseline (T > 50). Participants reported the intervention to be engaging and enhanced their knowledge of the housing transition process. The intervention appears to have assisted the participants in the attainment of housing skills and warrants further study.
Sewall, Kendra B; Dankoski, Elyse C; Sockman, Keith W
Male songbirds often establish territories and attract mates by singing, and some song features can reflect the singer's condition or quality. The quality of the song environment can change, so male songbirds should benefit from assessing the competitiveness of the song environment and appropriately adjusting their own singing behavior and the neural substrates by which song is controlled. In a wide range of taxa, social modulation of behavior is partly mediated by the arginine vasopressin or vasotocin (AVP/AVT) systems. To examine the modulation of singing behavior in response to the quality of the song environment, we compared the song output of laboratory-housed male Lincoln's sparrows (Melospiza lincolnii) exposed to 1 week of chronic playback of songs categorized as either high or low quality, based on song length, complexity, and trill performance. To explore the neural basis of any facultative shifts in behavior, we also quantified the subjects' AVT immunoreactivity (AVT-IR) in three forebrain regions that regulate sociosexual behavior: the medial bed nucleus of the stria terminalis (BSTm), the lateral septum (LS), and the preoptic area. We found that high-quality songs increased singing effort and reduced AVT-IR in the BSTm and LS, relative to low-quality songs. The effect of the quality of the song environment on both singing effort and forebrain AVT-IR raises the hypothesis that AVT within these brain regions plays a role in the modulation of behavior in response to competition that individual males may assess from the prevailing song environment.
Njai, Rashid S.; Greenlund, Kurt J.; Chapman, Daniel P.; Croft, Janet B.
Introduction Housing insecurity and food insecurity may be psychological stressors associated with insufficient sleep. Frequent mental distress may mediate the relationships between these variables. The objective of this study was to examine the relationships between housing insecurity and food insecurity, frequent mental distress, and insufficient sleep. Methods We analyzed data from the 2009 Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System in 12 states. Housing insecurity and food insecurity were defined as being worried or stressed “sometimes,” “usually,” or “always” during the previous 12 months about having enough money to pay rent or mortgage or to buy nutritious meals. Results Of 68,111 respondents, 26.4% reported frequent insufficient sleep, 28.5% reported housing insecurity, 19.3% reported food insecurity, and 10.8% reported frequent mental distress. The prevalence of frequent insufficient sleep was significantly greater among those who reported housing insecurity (37.7% vs 21.6%) or food insecurity (41.1% vs 22.9%) than among those who did not. The prevalence of frequent mental distress was also significantly greater among those reporting housing insecurity (20.1% vs 6.8%) and food insecurity (23.5% vs 7.7%) than those who did not. The association between housing insecurity or food insecurity and frequent insufficient sleep remained significant after adjustment for other sociodemographic variables and frequent mental distress. Conclusion Sleep health and mental health are embedded in the social context. Research is needed to assess whether interventions that reduce housing insecurity and food insecurity will also improve sleep health and mental health. PMID:24625361
Patterson, Michelle L; Rezansoff, Stefanie; Currie, Lauren; Somers, Julian M
Objectives This study used longitudinal, narrative data to identify trajectories of recovery among homeless adults with mental illness alongside the factors that contribute to positive, negative, mixed or neutral trajectories over time. We expected that participants who received Housing First (HF) would describe more positive trajectories of recovery than those who were assigned to Treatment as Usual (TAU; no housing or support provided through the study). Design Narrative interview data were collected from participants at baseline and 18 months after random assignment to HF or TAU. Setting Participants were sampled from the community in Vancouver, British Columbia. Participants Fifty-four participants were randomly and purposively selected from the larger trial; 52 were interviewed at baseline and 43 were reinterviewed 18 months after randomisation. Method Semistructured interviews were conducted at both time points. For each participant, paired baseline and follow-up narratives were classified as positive, negative, mixed or neutral trajectories of recovery, and thematic analysis was used to identify the factors underlying different trajectories. Results Participants assigned to HF (n=28) were generally classified as positive or mixed trajectories; those assigned to TAU (n=15) were generally classified as neutral or negative trajectories. Positive trajectories were characterised by a range of benefits associated with good-quality, stable housing (eg, reduced substance use, greater social support), positive expressions of identity and the willingness to self-reflect. Negative, neutral and mixed trajectories were characterised by hopelessness (‘things will never get better’) related to continued hardship (eg, eviction, substance use problems), perceived failures and loss. Conclusions HF is associated with positive trajectories of recovery among homeless adults with mental illness. Those who did not receive housing or support continued to struggle across a
Welch, Kenneth C.; Ramenofsky, Marilyn
Birds undergo numerous changes as they progress through life-history stages, yet relatively few studies have examined how birds adapt to both the dynamic energetic and mechanical demands associated with such transitions. Myosin heavy chain (MyHC) expression, often linked with muscle fibre type, is strongly correlated with a muscle's mechanical power-generating capability, thus we examined several morphological properties, including MyHC expression of the pectoralis, in a long-distance migrant, the white-crowned sparrow (Zonotrichia leucophrys gambelii) throughout the progression from winter, spring departure and arrival on breeding grounds. White-crowned sparrows demonstrated significant phenotypic flexibility throughout the seasonal transition, including changes in prealternate moult status, lipid fuelling, body condition and flight muscle morphology. Pectoral MyHC expression also varied significantly over the course of the study. Wintering birds expressed a single, newly classified adult fast 2 isoform. At spring departure, pectoral isoform expression included two MyHC isoforms: the adult fast 2 isoform along with a smaller proportion of a newly present adult fast 1 isoform. By spring arrival, both adult fast isoforms present at departure remained, yet expression had shifted to a greater relative proportion of the adult fast 1 isoform. Altering pectoral MyHC isoform expression in preparation for and during spring migration may represent an adaptation to modulate muscle mechanical output to support long-distance flight. PMID:28018664
Winder, Virginia L; Emslie, Steven D
We captured Nelson's, Saltmarsh and Seaside Sparrows (Ammodramus nelsoni, A. caudacutus and A. maritimus) at three salt marsh sites near Wrightsville Beach, North Carolina during five non-breeding seasons (September through April, 2006-2011). We analyzed breast feather samples from all of these seasons and blood and first primary feather (P1) samples from three seasons (2008-2011) for mercury (Hg). Generalized linear models were used to test for the impact of species, season, site and month on blood Hg, species, season and site on P1 Hg and species and season on breast feather Hg. The best-fit model for blood indicated that Hg varied among species, seasons and months. Saltmarsh Sparrows maintain higher blood Hg than Nelson's and Seaside Sparrows during the non-breeding season while they are feeding in mixed flocks. In Nelson's and Seaside Sparrows, blood Hg decreased during mid-winter compared to early fall and late spring. Breast feather and P1 Hg varied among species with Saltmarsh Sparrows exhibiting higher concentrations than the other two species, while Nelson's Sparrows had lower concentrations than the other two species. Breast feather Hg was higher in the final three seasons than in the first two. Our results indicate that Hg exposure on breeding sites may be increasing and that high levels of Hg exposure during the breeding season may affect blood Hg concentrations year-round in Saltmarsh Sparrows. Our data thus provide a baseline for future Hg assessments in these species in NC.
Beadell, J.; Greenberg, R.; Droege, S.; Royle, J. Andrew
We examined the distribution and abundance of the Coastal Plain Swamp Sparrow (Melospiza georgiana nigrescens) at previously occupied sites and points within potential habitat. We found Swamp Sparrows throughout their formerly documented range except in southern Chesapeake Bay. Swamp Sparrows were most common in the Mullica River region of New Jersey where we detected individuals at 78% of systematically chosen points with a mean count of 4.1 birds/point. The percentages of points with positive detections in. the regions of Delaware River (39%), eastern Delaware Bay (23%), western Delaware Bay (34%), and Tuckahoe River (31%) were lower. The mean count of birds/point was between 0.4 and 0.6 in these regions. A higher resolution Poisson model of relative abundance suggested that the greatest concentrations of Swamp Sparrows occurred not only in the Mullica River area but also along northwestern Delaware Bay. Regression analysis of Swamp Sparrow counts and habitat features identified shrubs (Iva frutescens and Baccharis halimifolia) as a key habitat component. By applying density estimates generated by DISTANCE (Thomas et al. 1998) to the approximate area of potential shrub habitat along Delaware Bay, we estimated that the core population of Coastal Plain Swamp Sparrows was less than 28,000 pairs. We recommend that the Coastal Plain Swamp Sparrow be listed as a subspecies of concern by state and local governments because of its relatively small population size, restricted distribution in the mid-Atlantic region, and narrow habitat requirements.
Goodson, James L; Wilson, Leah C; Schrock, Sara E
Many bird species exhibit dramatic seasonal switches between territoriality and flocking, but whereas neuroendocrine mechanisms of territorial aggression have been extensively studied, those of seasonal flocking are unknown. We collected brains in spring and winter from male field sparrows (Spizella pusilla), which seasonally flock, and male song sparrows (Melospiza melodia), which are territorial year-round in much of their range. Spring collections were preceded by field-based assessments of aggression. Tissue series were immunofluorescently multilabeled for vasotocin, mesotocin (MT), corticotropin-releasing hormone (CRH), vasoactive intestinal polypeptide, tyrosine hydroxylase, and aromatase, and labeling densities were measured in many socially relevant brain areas. Extensive seasonal differences are shared by both species. Many measures correlate significantly with both individual and species differences in aggression, likely reflecting evolved mechanisms that differentiate the less aggressive field sparrow from the more aggressive song sparrow. Winter-specific species differences include a substantial increase of MT and CRH immunoreactivity in the dorsal lateral septum (LS) and medial amygdala of field sparrows but not song sparrows. These species differences likely relate to flocking rather than the suppression of winter aggression in field sparrows, because similar winter differences were found for two other emberizids that are not territorial in winter--dark-eyed juncos (Junco hyemalis), which seasonally flock, and eastern towhees (Pipilo erythropthalmus), which do not flock. MT signaling in the dorsal LS is also associated with year-round species differences in grouping in estrildid finches, suggesting that common mechanisms are targeted during the evolution of different life histories.
Kern, Michael D.; Sogge, Mark K.; Kern, Robert B.; Van Riper, Charles
Nests and nest sites of the San Miguel Island (SMI) Song Sparrow (Melospiza melodia micronyx) are described; nests are compared with those of 16 other races of Song Sparrows. Bush lupins (Lupinus albifrons), coyote brush (Baccharis pilularis) and golden bush (Haplopappus venetus) were the shrubs used most commonly as nest sites by Song Sparrows on SMI. As a result of its location, the nest was effectively concealed from gray foxes (Urocyon littoralis), the major predator of this sparrow. Nest and nest site also moderated the combined chilling effects of cool air temperatures and strong northwesterly winds on the eggs and nestlings. Even in the absence of these moderating effects of the nest site, the energetic cost of incubation, estimated at 41-53% of the sparrow's resting metabolic rate, was modest. Twenty-nine percent of the canopy above the nest was open and as much as 73% of the nest cup was in the sun at midday, a time when surface temperatures of foliage, nest and nestlings sometimes exceeded 40 C. Whereas this exposure did not apparently reduce fledging success, it may explain why the incidence of addled eggs was so high in this population of Song Sparrows compared to others. Significant differences existed among races of Song Sparrows in the size, porosity and insulation of the nest. In most cases, these differences were not related to the latitude of the races' nesting areas.
Background The aim of this study was to identify what is most important to the quality of life (QoL) of those who experience homelessness by directly soliciting the views of homeless and hard-to-house Canadians themselves. These individuals live within a unique social context that differs considerably from that of the general population. To understand the life areas that are most important to them, it is critical to have direct input from target populations of homeless and hard-to-house persons. Methods Focus groups were conducted with 140 individuals aged 15 to 73 years who were homeless or hard-to-house to explore the circumstances in which they were living and to capture what they find to be important and relevant domains of QoL. Participants were recruited in Toronto, Ottawa, Montreal, and Vancouver. Content analysis was used to analyze the data. Results Six major content themes emerged: Health/health care; Living conditions; Financial situation; Employment situation; Relationships; and Recreational and leisure activities. These themes were linked to broader concepts that included having choices, stability, respect, and the same rights as other members of society. Conclusions These findings not only aid our understanding of QoL in this group, but may be used to develop measures that capture QoL in this population and help programs and policies become more effective in improving the life situation for persons who are homeless and hard-to-house. Quality of life themes in Canadian adults and street youth who are homeless or hard-to-house: A multi-site focus group study. PMID:22894551
Warner, Sarah E; Shriver, W Gregory; Pepper, Margaret A; Taylor, Robert J
Mercury (Hg) contamination from industrial sources is pervasive throughout North America and is recognized by the US Environmental Protection Agency as a health hazard for wildlife and humans. Avian species are commonly used as bioindicators of Hg because they are sensitive to contaminants in the environment and are relatively easy to sample. However, it is important to select the appropriate avian species to use as a bioindicator, which should be directly related to the project objectives. In this study, we tested the utility of two tidal marsh sparrows, Seaside (Ammodramus maritimus) and Saltmarsh (Ammodramus caudacutus) sparrows, as bioindicator species of the extent of Hg contamination in tidal marshes along the Delaware Bay. To determine the possibility of using one or both of these species, we estimated sparrow blood Hg burden in five Delaware watersheds. We found no difference in Hg concentrations between species (F (1,133) < 0.01, P=0.99), but Saltmarsh Sparrows had limited sample size from each site and were, therefore, not appropriate for a Delaware Bay-wide Hg indicator. Seaside Sparrows, however, were abundant and relatively easy to sample in the five watersheds. Seaside Sparrow blood Hg levels ranged from 0.15 to 2.12 ppm, differed among drainages, and were greatest in two drainages distant from the Delaware Bay shoreline (F (4,95) =2.51, P=0.05). Based on a power analysis for Seaside Sparrow blood Hg, we estimated that 16 samples would be necessary to detect differences among sites. Based on these data, we propose that Seaside Sparrows may be used as a tidal marsh Hg bioindicator species given their habitat specificity, relative abundance, widespread distribution in marsh habitats, ease of sampling, and limited variation in blood Hg estimates within a sampling area. In Delaware Bay, Saltmarsh Sparrows may be too rare (making them difficult to sample) to be a viable tidal marsh Hg bioindicator.
To Consolidate Federal Vocational and Adult Education Programs. Hearing before the Subcommittee on Elementary, Secondary, and Vocational Education of the Committee on Education and Labor, House of Representatives, Ninety-Eighth Congress, First Session on H.R. 2940.
Congress of the U.S., Washington, DC. House Committee on Education and Labor.
This document, a transcript of a House of Representatives subcommittee hearing on a Reagan Administration proposal, discusses consolidation of existing federal vocational and adult education programs, simplification of requirements for states and other recipients participating in federal vocational and adult education programs, authorization of…
Zuckerman, Miron; Silberman, Jordan; Pham, Hoang; Zahn, Ista
When asked to randomly select answer choices on easy multiple choice questions, people select more correct answers than expected by chance. Sparrow and Wegner showed that this tendency was eliminated if participants answered questions correctly before answering randomly. They argued that answering a question correctly unprimes the tendency to choose the correct answer, thereby reducing the correct response rate close to the chance level of.5. An alternative explanation, consistent with these results, is that answering questions correctly provides a baseline, which allows participants to strategize, i.e., to match and mismatch equal numbers of their purportedly random responses to the baseline response. Three studies showed that the presence of a baseline, even when unpriming is not feasible, led to lower correct response rates than those obtained in a condition in which no baseline was available. Furthermore, the presence of a baseline led to more nonrandom sequences of correct and incorrect responses. One specific sequence–alternating correct and incorrect answers–mediated the relation between the presence of a baseline and lower correct response rate. These findings suggest that strategizing, not unpriming, accounts for Sparrow and Wegner’s results. PMID:24505293
Duberstein, Corey A.; Simmons, Mary Ann; Sackschewsky, Michael R.; Becker, James M.
Mitigation threshold guidelines for the Hanford Site are based on habitat requirements of the sage sparrow (Amphispiza belli) and only apply to areas with a mature sagebrush (Artemisia tridentata) overstory and a native understory. The sage sparrow habitat requirements are based on literature values and are not specific to the Hanford Site. To refine these guidelines for the Site, a multi-year study was undertaken to quantify habitat characteristics of sage sparrow territories. These characteristics were then used to develop a habitat suitability index (HSI) model which can be used to estimate the habitat value of specific locations on the Site.
Crino, O L; Van Oorschot, B Klaassen; Johnson, E E; Malisch, J L; Breuner, C W
Roads have been associated with decreased reproductive success and biodiversity in avian communities and increased physiological stress in adult birds. Alternatively, roads may also increase food availability and reduce predator pressure. Previous studies have focused on adult birds, but nestlings may also be susceptible to the detrimental impacts of roads. We examined the effects of proximity to a road on nestling glucocorticoid activity and growth in the mountain white-crowned sparrow (Zonotrichia leucophrys oriantha). Additionally, we examined several possible indirect factors that may influence nestling corticosterone (CORT) activity secretion in relation to roads. These indirect effects include parental CORT activity, nest-site characteristics, and parental provisioning. And finally, we assessed possible fitness consequences of roads through measures of fledging success. Nestlings near roads had increased CORT activity, elevated at both baseline and stress-induced levels. Surprisingly, these nestlings were also bigger. Generally, greater corticosterone activity is associated with reduced growth. However, the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal axis matures through the nestling period (as nestlings get larger, HPA-activation is greater). Although much of the variance in CORT responses was explained by body size, nestling CORT responses were higher close to roads after controlling for developmental differences. Indirect effects of roads may be mediated through paternal care. Nestling CORT responses were correlated with paternal CORT responses and paternal provisioning increased near roads. Hence, nestlings near roads may be larger due to increased paternal attentiveness. And finally, nest predation was higher for nests close to the road. Roads have apparent costs for white-crowned sparrow nestlings--increased predation, and apparent benefits--increased size. The elevation in CORT activity seems to reflect both increased size (benefit) and elevation due to road
Five-month comparative efficacy evaluation of three ectoparasiticides against adult cat fleas (Ctenocephalides felis), flea egg hatch and emergence, and adult brown dog ticks (Rhipicephalus sanguineus sensu lato) on dogs housed outdoors.
Varloud, Marie; Hodgkins, Elizabeth
This study was designed to compare the efficacy of three topical combinations on dogs in outdoor conditions against adult cat fleas (Ctenocephalides felis), flea egg hatch and emergence, and against adult brown dog ticks (Rhipicephalus sanguineus sensu lato). Treatment was performed on day 0 with a placebo; dinotefuran, pyriproxifen and permethrin (DPP); fipronil and (S)-methoprene (FM) or imidacloprid and permethrin (IP). Dogs (n = 32), housed outdoors for 7 months, were treated monthly for four consecutive months (on days 0, 30, 60 and 90) and infested with ~100 unfed adult fleas on days 14, 55, 74, 115 and 150 and with ~50 unfed adult ticks on days 28, 44, 88 and 104. Adult fleas were counted and removed 24 h after infestation. Immediately after flea removal, dogs were reinfested with ~100 new adult fleas 72 h prior to egg collection for up to 48 h. Flea eggs were incubated for 32 days, and newly emerged adults were counted. Ticks were counted and removed 48 h after each infestation. FM had >90 % efficacy against fleas at each time point and variable efficacy against ticks (38.0-99.6 %). Efficacy of IP was <90 % against fleas at day 64 and against ticks at day 30 of the first post-treatment. No flea eggs were laid in the treated groups until infestation was carried out >60 days after the last treatment. Despite challenging weather conditions, DPP was highly effective, providing >90 % efficacy against adult ticks as well as adult and immature fleas at every time point of the study.
Lascher, Steven; Tasir-Rodriguez, Wesley; Moon, Grace; Irizzary, Maria; Baney, Matthew; Kellogg, F Russell
St. Vincent's Catholic Medical Centers of New York initiated a study in 2009 to assess the health needs of residents of New York City (NYC) municipal housing at the Robert Fulton public housing complex in Manhattan. The aim of this project was to provide valid data on perceived health services needs of the residents of a NYC housing project. These data may also be used to support hospital and community collaborative strategic decisions for developing resident-appropriate health and social services and would be valuable for use in formulating policies and programs by other interested nonprofit health and social services organizations and government. We designed a 28-item instrument and pilot tested it with our research team and members of the population under study. The English and Spanish surveys were designed as an in-person surveyor-administered instruments addressing four domains: demographics, access and barriers to health care services, risk behaviors, and perceived health needs. The sampling was an apartment-level stratified random sampling. A 20%, 188 apartment sample was drawn from the population of 944 housing units. Our response rate was 92% (173/188 apartments). Background methods, and demographic results are reported in this article. A second article will report on the needs assessment results.
Izdebska, J N; Rolbiecki, L
The study of the parasitofauna of the house mouse Mus musculus (Rodentia: Muridae) Linnaeus is particularly important owing to its multiple relationships with humans - as a cosmopolitan, synanthropic rodent, bred for pets, food for other animals or laboratory animal. This article proposes and describes a new genus and species of the parasitic mite based on adult and immature stages from the house mouse. Glossicodex musculi gen. n., sp. n. is a medium-sized demodecid mite (adult stages on average 199 µm in length) found in mouse tissue of the tongue. It is characterized by two large, hooked claws on each tarsus of the legs; the legs are relatively massive, consisting of large, non-overlapping segments. The palps consist of three slender, clearly separated, relatively narrow segments, wherein their coxal segments are also quite narrow and spaced. Also, segments of the palps of larva and nymphs are clearly isolated, and on the terminal segment, trident claws that resemble legs' claws can be found. On the ventral side, in immature stages, triangular scuta, topped with sclerotized spur, can be also observed. Glossicodex musculi was noted in 10.8% of mice with a mean infection intensity of 2.2 parasites per host.
The Dusky Seaside Sparrow, Ammospiza maritima nigrescens, was first discovered by Charles J. Maynard near Salt Lake on the St. Johns River west of Titusville, Brevard County, Florida, on March 17, 1872. Later that spring, Maynard found the sparrow to be quite common in the salt marsh on the Canaveral Peninsula in what is now the Merritt Island National Wildlife Refuge on the John F. Kennedy Space Center. The first Dusky nests were found 42 years later when Oscar E. Baynard and Henry Simpson located three on the peninsula along the edge of Indian River on May 21, 1914. The sparrow was abundant in the marsh on the east of the Indian River until the 1950s. By the early 1960s, the sparrow had disappeared from much of its former range and a decline occurred in an area under study on Merritt Island.
Fesenmyer, K.A.; Knick, S.T.
Post-breeding ecology of shrubland passerines prior to onset of migration is unknown relative to dynamics of breeding areas. We radiomarked and monitored 38 Sage Sparrows (Amphispiza belli ssp. nevadensis) at one site in Oregon and two in Nevada from September to mid-November 2007 to track local movements, estimate seasonal range sizes, and characterize weather patterns triggering onset of migration. Median area used by Sage Sparrows monitored between 3 and 18 days during or prior to migration was 14 ha; maximum daily movement was 15 km. Radio-marked Sage Sparrows at each location departed individually, rather than en masse, corresponding with passage of cold front weather systems. Conventional telemetry techniques limited our ability to monitor Sage Sparrows beyond pre-migratory periods and precluded detecting and tracking actual movements during migration. ?? 2011 by the Wilson Ornithological Society.
It is no secret that America is at risk of losing its place as a world leader in education. Some 88 million adults in America need help with their English as a Second Language (ESL) and basic skills, yet the nation is currently providing services to only 3 million people. The Commission on Adult Literacy calls for bold change at the state and…
Strom, Sean M; Brady, Ryan S
Wetlands play a major role in the export of methylmercury (MeHg) to a watershed. The large contribution of wetlands to watersheds in northern Wisconsin, coupled with the acidic environment of this area, makes these habitats especially vulnerable to mercury (Hg) accumulation by biota. The purpose of this study was to compare Hg accumulation between northern Wisconsin wetlands and southern Wisconsin wetlands using the swamp sparrow (Melospiza georgiana) as a representative species. The swamp sparrow was selected as a representative passerine species in which to examine Hg in these habitats, because during their breeding season, they feed at a higher trophic level than many of their counterparts. During the breeding seasons of 2007 and 2008, blood samples were collected from swamp sparrows inhabiting wetlands in both northern and southern Wisconsin and analyzed for total Hg. The mean concentration of total Hg in swamp sparrows from northern wetlands was 0.135 ± 0.064 μg/ml while the mean concentration of total Hg in swamp sparrows from southern wetlands was 0.187 ± 0.106 μg/ml. Results revealed no significant difference (P = 0.17) between Hg accumulation in swamp sparrows from less-acidic wetlands in southern Wisconsin and Hg in swamp sparrows from acidic wetlands in northern Wisconsin. The results are contrary to those observed in other species such as common loon, tree swallow and river otter where higher accumulation has been observed in individuals from acidic habitats. Reasons for the lack of this accumulation pattern in swamp sparrows are unclear and warrant further study.
Somers, Julian M.; Rezansoff, Stefanie N.; Moniruzzaman, Akm; Palepu, Anita; Patterson, Michelle
Background Homelessness and mental illness have a strong association with public disorder and criminality. Experimental evidence indicates that Housing First (HF) increases housing stability and perceived choice among those experiencing chronic homelessness and mental disorders. HF is also associated with lower residential costs than common alternative approaches. Few studies have examined the effect of HF on criminal behavior. Methods Individuals meeting criteria for homelessness and a current mental disorder were randomized to one of three conditions treatment as usual (reference); scattered site HF; and congregate HF. Administrative data concerning justice system events were linked in order to study prior histories of offending and to test the relationship between housing status and offending following randomization for up to two years. Results The majority of the sample (67%) was involved with the justice system, with a mean of 8.07 convictions per person in the ten years prior to recruitment. The most common category of crime was “property offences” (mean = 4.09). Following randomization, the scattered site HF condition was associated with significantly lower numbers of sentences than treatment as usual (Adjusted IRR = 0.29; 95% CI 0.12–0.72). Congregate HF was associated with a marginally significant reduction in sentences compared to treatment as usual (Adjusted IRR = 0.55; 95% CI: 0.26–1.14). Conclusions This study is the first randomized controlled trial to demonstrate benefits of HF among a homeless sample with mental illness in the domain of public safety and crime. Our sample was frequently involved with the justice system, with great personal and societal costs. Further implementation of HF is strongly indicated, particularly in the scattered site format. Research examining interdependencies between housing, health, and the justice system is indicated. Trial registration ISRCTN57595077 PMID:24023796
Todkar, Aniruddha; Granholm, Linnea; Aljumah, Mujtaba; Nilsson, Kent W.; Comasco, Erika; Nylander, Ingrid
The neurobiological basis of early life stress (ELS) impact on vulnerability to alcohol use disorder is not fully understood. The effect of ELS, adult ethanol consumption and single housing, on expression of stress and DNA methylation regulatory genes as well as blood corticosterone levels was investigated in the hypothalamus and pituitary of adult out-bred Wistar rats subjected to different rearing conditions. A prolonged maternal separation (MS) of 360 min (MS360) was used to study the effect of ELS, and a short MS of 15 min (MS15) was used as a control. Voluntary ethanol drinking was assessed using a two-bottle free choice paradigm to simulate human episodic drinking. The effects of single housing and ethanol were assessed in conventional animal facility rearing (AFR) conditions. Single housing in adulthood was associated with lower Crhr1 and higher Pomc expression in the pituitary, whereas ethanol drinking was associated with higher expression of Crh in the hypothalamus and Crhr1 in the pituitary, accompanied by lower corticosterone levels. As compared to controls with similar early life handling, rats exposed to ELS displayed lower expression of Pomc in the hypothalamus, and higher Dnmt1 expression in the pituitary. Voluntary ethanol drinking resulted in lower Fkbp5 expression in the pituitary and higher Crh expression in the hypothalamus, independently of rearing conditions. In rats exposed to ELS, water and ethanol drinking was associated with higher and lower corticosterone levels, respectively. The use of conventionally reared rats as control group yielded more significant results than the use of rats exposed to short MS. Positive correlations, restricted to the hypothalamus and ELS group, were observed between the expression of the hypothalamus-pituitary-adrenal receptor and the methylation-related genes. Promoter DNA methylation and expression of respective genes did not correlate suggesting that other loci are involved in transcriptional regulation
Stergiopoulos, Vicky; Gozdzik, Agnes; Misir, Vachan; Skosireva, Anna; Connelly, Jo; Sarang, Aseefa; Whisler, Adam; Hwang, Stephen W.; O’Campo, Patricia; McKenzie, Kwame
Housing First (HF) is being widely disseminated in efforts to end homelessness among homeless adults with psychiatric disabilities. This study evaluates the effectiveness of HF with Intensive Case Management (ICM) among ethnically diverse homeless adults in an urban setting. 378 participants were randomized to HF with ICM or treatment-as-usual (TAU) in Toronto (Canada), and followed for 24 months. Measures of effectiveness included housing stability, physical (EQ5D-VAS) and mental (CSI, GAIN-SS) health, social functioning (MCAS), quality of life (QoLI20), and health service use. Two-thirds of the sample (63%) was from racialized groups and half (50%) were born outside Canada. Over the 24 months of follow-up, HF participants spent a significantly greater percentage of time in stable residences compared to TAU participants (75.1% 95% CI 70.5 to 79.7 vs. 39.3% 95% CI 34.3 to 44.2, respectively). Similarly, community functioning (MCAS) improved significantly from baseline in HF compared to TAU participants (change in mean difference = +1.67 95% CI 0.04 to 3.30). There was a significant reduction in the number of days spent experiencing alcohol problems among the HF compared to TAU participants at 24 months (ratio of rate ratios = 0.47 95% CI 0.22 to 0.99) relative to baseline, a reduction of 53%. Although the number of emergency department visits and days in hospital over 24 months did not differ significantly between HF and TAU participants, fewer HF participants compared to TAU participants had 1 or more hospitalizations during this period (70.4% vs. 81.1%, respectively; P=0.044). Compared to non-racialized HF participants, racialized HF participants saw an increase in the amount of money spent on alcohol (change in mean difference = $112.90 95% CI 5.84 to 219.96) and a reduction in physical community integration (ratio of rate ratios = 0.67 95% CI 0.47 to 0.96) from baseline to 24 months. Secondary analyses found a significant reduction in the number of days
Beerens, James; Romanach, Stephanie
The Cape Sable Seaside Sparrow (Ammodramus maritimus mirabilis; hereafter sparrow) is endemic to south Florida and a key indicator species of marl prairie, the most diverse freshwater community in the Florida Everglades. Marl prairie habitat is shaped by intermediate levels of disturbances such as flooding, drying, and fire, which maintain periphyton production (Gaiser et al. 2011), vegetation composition (Sah et al. 2011), and habitat structure for wildlife (Lockwood et al. 2003). Historically, patches of marl prairie shifted in response to changing climatic conditions,; however, habitat loss and hydrologic alteration have restricted the sparrow’s range and increased their sensitivity to changing hydropatterns. As a result, sparrow numbers have declined as much as 60% range-wide since 1992 (Curnutt et al. 1998, Nott et al. 1998). Currently, the sparrow is restricted to the freshwater prairies of the Everglades National Park (ENP) and Big Cypress Preserve (Lockwood et al. 1997). Because this non-migratory bird is restricted in its range it was among the first species to be listed as endangered by the US Fish and Wildlife Service on March 11, 1967 (Pimm et al. 2000). Now protected by the Endangered Species Act of 1973, the sparrow is listed as an endangered species, and the marl prairies that it resides in are listed as critical habitat. Since its designation as an endangered species, federal agencies have a statutory obligation to not jeopardize the survival of the species or modify its critical habitat. However, there are still uncertainties in how to increase suitable habitat within and surrounding the six existing sparrow subpopulations (Fig. 1) which are vulnerable to environmental stochasticity because of their small population size and restricted range. Since Because maintenance and creation of suitable habitat is seen as the most important pathway to the persistence of sparrow subpopulations (Sustainable Ecosystems Institute 2007), emphasis should be on
Kassiri, Hamid; Zarrin, Majid; Veys-Behbahani, Rahele; Faramarzi, Sama; Kasiri, Ali
Musca domestica L., 1758 is capable of transferring a number of pathogenic viruses, bacteria, fungi, and parasites to animals and humans. The objective of this study was to isolate and identify medically important filamentous fungi and yeasts from adult M. domestica collected from two wards of three hospital environments in Ahvaz city, Khuzestan Province, southwestern Iran. The common house flies were caught by a sterile net. These insects were washed in a solution of 1% sodium hypochlorite for 3 min and twice in sterile distilled water for 1 min. The flies were individually crushed with sterile swabs in sterile test tubes. Then 2 ml of sterile normal saline (0.85%) was added to each tube, and the tube was centrifuged for 5 min. The supernatant was then discarded, and the remaining sediment was inoculated with a sterile swab in the Sabouraud's dextrose agar medium containing chloramphenicol. Isolation and identification of fungi were made by standard mycological methods. In this research, totally 190 M. domestica from hospital environments were captured. In total, 28 fungal species were isolated. The main fungi isolated were Aspergillus spp. (67.4%), Penicillium sp. (11.6%), Mucorales sp. (11%), Candida spp. (10.5%), and Rhodotorula sp. (8.4%). Among the house flies caught at the hospitals, about 80% were found to carry one or more medically important species of fungi. This study has established that common house flies carry pathogenic fungi in the hospital environments of Ahvaz. The control of M. domestica in hospitals is essential in order to control the nosocomial fungal infections in patients.
Cooper, Hannah LF; Linton, Sabriya; Haley, Danielle F.; Kelley, Mary E.; Dauria, Emily F.; Karnes, Conny Chen; Ross, Zev; Hunter-Jones, Josalin; Renneker, Kristen K.; del Rio, Carlos; Adimora, Adaora; Wingood, Gina; Rothenberg, Richard; Bonney, Loida E.
Ecologic and cross-sectional multilevel analyses suggest that characteristics of the places where people live influence their vulnerability to HIV and other sexually-transmitted infections (STIs). Using data from a predominately substance-misusing cohort of African-American adults relocating from US public housing complexes, this multilevel longitudinal study tested the hypothesis that participants who experienced greater post-relocation improvements in economic disadvantage, violent crime, and male:female sex ratios would experience greater reductions in perceived partner risk and in the odds of having a partner who had another partner (i.e., indirect concurrency). Baseline data were collected from 172 public housing residents before relocations occurred; three waves of post-relocation data were collected every nine months. Participants who experienced greater improvements in community violence and in economic conditions experienced greater reductions in partner risk. Reduced community violence was associated with reduced indirect concurrency. Structural interventions that decrease exposure to violence and economic disadvantage may reduce vulnerability to HIV/STIs. PMID:25150728
Two cases of aspergillosis involving four adult cowbirds (Molothrus ater) collected during the nesting season are reported. Aspergillosis was found in house sparrows (Passer domesticus) on two occasions.
Sogge, Mark K.; Kern, Michael D.; Kern, Robert; van Riper, Charles
Patterns of growth (reviewed by Ricklefs 1968, 1969; O'Connor 1984) and the development of endothermy (reviewed by Dawson and Hudson 1970, Dunn 1975, Hill and Beaver 1982) have been well-studied in altricial wild birds, especially passerines. But few studies compare grown and thermogenesis in separate populations of the same species. Results of such studies with emberizids varied among species. King and Hubbard (1981), for example, found that nestlings from subarctic, subalpine, and low-altitude montane populations of White-crowned Sparrows (Zonotrichia leucophrys gambelii) grew at similar rates. In contrast, Rogers (1985) reported that the growth rates of nestlings in different populations of Savannah Sparrows (Passerculus sandwichensis) varied in response to the different environmental constraints of the localities in which they were reared. Nice (1937) and Smith et al. (1982) documented patterns of nestling growth in mainland (Ohio) and insular (Mandarte Island, British Columbia, Canada) populations of Song Sparrows (Melospiza melodia), respectively, and found that they were similar to those reported for most other passerines by Ricklefs (1968, 1969) and O'Connor (1984). In 1985-1986, we had the opportunity to examine the growth of nestlings from a third race of Song Sparrows, M. m. micronyx, which is endemic to San Miguel Island near Santa Barbara, California. We also studied the development of endothermy in these young birds, a process not hitherto described for nestling Song Sparrows. We report both in this paper.
Thatcher, B.S.; Krementz, D.G.; Woodrey, M.S.
Wintering Henslow's sparrow (Ammodramus henslowii) populations rely on lands managed with prescribed burning, but the effects of various burn regimes on their overwinter survival are unknown. We studied wintering Henslow's sparrows in coastal pine savannas at the Mississippi Sandhill Crane National Wildlife Refuge, Jackson County, Mississippi, USA, during January and February 2001 and 2002. We used the known-fate modeling procedure in program MARK to evaluate the effects of burn age (1 or 2 growing seasons elapsed), burn season (growing, dormant), and calendar year on the survival rates of 83 radiomarked Henslow's sparrows. We found strong evidence that Henslow's sparrow survival rates differed by burn age (with higher survival in recently burned sites) and by year (with lower survival rates in 2001 likely because of drought conditions). We found some evidence that survival rates also differed by bum season (with higher survival in growing-season sites), although the effects of burn season were only apparent in recently burned sites. Avian predation was the suspected major cause of mortality (causing 6 of 14 deaths) with 1 confirmed loggerhead shrike (Lanius ludovicianus) depredation. Our results indicated that recently burned savannas provide high-quality wintering habitats and suggested that managers can improve conditions for wintering Henslow's sparrows by burning a large percentage of savannas each year.
Johnson, M.J.; van Riper, Charles
From 1994-1996 we investigated effects of Brown-headed Cowbird (Molothrus ater) parasitism on Black-throated Sparrow (Amphispiza bilineata) nesting success in the Verde Valley of central Arizona. Of 56 Black-throated Sparrow nests, 52% were parasitized. Black-throated Sparrows appear to respond to natural parasitism by accepting the cowbird egg, deserting the nest, or burying the cowbird egg. Removal and damage of host eggs by female cowbirds effectively reduced clutch size from an average of 3.4 to 1.9 eggs. Because of this reduced clutch size, Black-throated Sparrow reproductive success was significantly lower in parasitized nests (0.2 young fledged/ nest) as compared to nonparasitized nests (1.6 young fledged/nest). When comparing cowbird parasitism between two habitat types, we found significantly higher parasitism frequencies in crucifixion-thorn (Canotia holacantha) versus creosote-bush (Larrea divaricata) habitat. We argue that this difference in parasitism is due to the greater number of tall perches (e.g., shrubs >4 m) available in crucifixion-thorn habitat, providing vantage points for female cowbirds to better find Black-throated Sparrow nests.
Hiyama, Gen; Sato, Tsukasa; Zadworny, David; Kansaku, Norio
Complementary DNA (cDNA) of prolactin (PRL) and vasoactive intestinal polypeptide (VIP) of the Java sparrow were cloned and sequenced. The proximal region of the PRL promoter was also identified. Java sparrow PRL was found to have 88.3, 88.3, and 89.1% sequence identity at the cDNA level to PRL of chicken, turkey, and duck, respectively. The predicted amino acid sequence had an overall similarity with a comparable region of chicken (91.4%), turkey (88.9%) and duck (92.0%) PRL. Based on the cDNA sequence and genomic structure of the chicken PRL gene, the proximal promoter was characterized. Sequence analysis of the proximal region of Java sparrow PRL promoter revealed a high degree of similarity to that of chicken, turkey and duck PRL promoters. Moreover, cDNA of prepro-VIP was also cloned and sequenced. Java sparrow prepro-VIP shows high similarity to chicken and turkey prepro-VIP. However, the region upstream of the 5' untranslated region of Java sparrow prepro-VIP did not show similarity to that of chicken. These results suggest that the mechanisms, which regulate expression of the VIP gene, may be different between precocial and altricial birds, but expression of the PRL gene may be widely conserved in avian species.
... General Conformity Determination for Pennsylvania for the Proposed Sparrows Point LNG Terminal and... liquefied natural gas (LNG) import terminal and natural gas pipeline proposed by AES Sparrows Point LNG, LLC... quality impacts from the construction and operation of the following LNG terminal and natural gas...
... Final General Conformity Determination for Maryland for the Proposed Sparrows Point LNG Terminal and...) import terminal and natural gas pipeline proposed by AES Sparrows Point LNG, LLC and Mid-Atlantic Express... following LNG terminal and natural gas pipeline facilities: A ship unloading facility, with two...
... Sparrows Point LNG Terminal and Pipeline Project March 1, 2010. The staff of the Federal Energy Regulatory... operation of a liquefied natural gas (LNG) import terminal and natural gas pipeline proposed by AES Sparrows... LNG terminal and natural gas pipeline facilities: A ship unloading facility, with two berths,...
Nemeth, Erwin; Kempenaers, Bart; Matessi, Giuliano; Brumm, Henrik
The evolution of mating signals is closely linked to sexual selection. Acoustic ornaments are often used as secondary sexual traits that signal the quality of the signaller. Here we show that song performance reflects age and reproductive success in the rock sparrow (Petronia petronia). In an Alpine population in south-east France, we recorded the songs of males and assessed their genetic breeding success by microsatellite analysis. In addition to temporal and spectral song features, we also analysed for the first time whether the sound pressure level of bird song reflects reproductive success. Males with higher breeding success sang at a lower rate and with a higher maximum frequency. We found also that older males gained more extra-pair young and had a higher overall breeding success, although they also differed almost significantly by having a higher loss of paternity in their own nests. Older males could be distinguished from yearlings by singing at lower rate and higher amplitudes. Our findings suggest that song rate may be used as a signal of age and together with song pitch as a signal of reproductive success in this species. Alternatively, younger and less successful males might try to compensate their inferior status by increased song rates and lower pitch. Independent of age and quality, high-amplitude songs correlated with paternity loss in the own nest, suggesting that in this species song amplitude is not an indicator of male quality but high-intensity songs may be rather a response to unfaithful social mates.
Keller, L F; Arcese, P; Smith, J N; Hochachka, W M; Stearns, S C
The genetic and demographic consequences of population subdivision have received considerable attention from conservation biologists. In particular, losses of genetic variability and reduced viability and fecundity due to inbreeding (inbreeding depression) are of concern. Studies of domestic, laboratory and zoo populations have shown inbreeding depression in a variety of traits related to fitness. Consequently, inbreeding depression is widely accepted as a fact. Recently, however, the relative impact of inbreeding on the viability of natural populations has been questioned. Work on the cheetah (Acinonyx jubatus), for example, has emphasized the overwhelming importance of environmental factors on mortality in the wild. Here we report that song sparrows (Melospiza melodia) that survived a severe population bottleneck were a non-random subset of the pre-crash population with respect to inbreeding, and that natural selection favoured outbred individuals. Thus, inbreeding depression was expressed in the face of an environmental challenge. Such challenges are also likely to be faced by inbred populations of endangered species. We suggest that environmental and genetic effects on survival may interact and, as a consequence, that their effects on individuals and populations should not be considered independently.
Stober, J.M.; Krementz, D.G.
We estimated breeding season survival rates and nest success for Bachman's Sparrows at the Savannah River Site, South Carolina, using radio telemetry. The 1995 breeding season (2 May-9 Aug) survival rate was 0.905 (95% C. I. 0.779-1.03) with 2 mortalities out of 20 individuals. The 1996 breeding season (10 May-25 Jul) survival rate was 0.882 (95% C. I. 0.729-1.04) with 2 mortalities out of 18 individuals. No significant differences in survival rates were detected between years, sexes, or habitat types. The overall breeding season survival rate was 0.893 (95%, C. I. 0.794-0.992). Daily nest survival rate in 1995 was 0.952 (0.013 SE N=26) and 0.889 (0.027 SE N=15) in 1996. Daily nest survival was significantly greater during 1995, with only 1 of 15 nests fledging a single individual in 1996. Nests attempts initiated before 15 June (0.975 [0.012], N=15) had higher survival rates than later nest attempts (0.914 [0.029] N=11, C2=3.77, 1 df, P=0.05).
Mutual interactions between sexes have multiple signalling functions. Duet singing in songbirds is related to mutual mate guarding, joint resource defence, and signalling commitment. Coordinated visual displays of mating pairs are thought to perform similar functions, but are less well understood. The current study evaluated mutual interactions in an Estrildid species to explore the relative importance of duet dancing and male singing in mating success of pairs in a first encounter. When Java sparrows (Lonchura oryzivora) court prospective mates, only males sing. However, both males and females perform courtship dances, often in a duet-like manner. These dances are typically terminated by female copulation solicitation displays (CSDs). In the current study, we observed higher mating success when courtship dances were mutually exchanged, and when males sang. However, the sex initiating the courtship did not affect mating success. Most females produced CSDs after duet dancing but before hearing the entire song, indicating that duet dancing played a crucial role in mating. This finding highlights an unexplored aspect of duetting behaviour in the process of mutual mate choice. These results conflict with the majority of past songbird research, which has interpreted songs as primary behavioural sexual signals. PMID:28273111
Yang, Canchao; Wang, Longwu; Liang, Wei; Møller, Anders P
Although many biological phenotypes are generally regarded as consistent across the distributional range of a species, some traits such as egg discrimination behavior have been shown to display extensive intraspecific variation as a response to selection from brood parasitism. We investigated the egg recognition ability in an Asian population of tree sparrows (Passer montanus), and we compared that with the ability to recognize and reject intraspecific foreign eggs in a population in Europe. Extensive artificial parasitism with model eggs and real eggs of eight sympatric birds that vary in background color and markings revealed that egg recognition capacity is completely absent in this Asian population of tree sparrows. This result contrasts with previous studies in European populations showing extensive ability for discriminating between own and foreign eggs. Different evolutionary equilibria or differences in the risk of conspecific parasitism may account for differences in egg discrimination ability between European and Asian populations of tree sparrows.
Nott, M.P.; Bass, O.L.; Fleming, D.M.; Killeffer, S.E.; Fraley, N.; Manne, L.; Curnutt, J.L.; Brooks, T.M.; Powell, R.; Pimm, S.L.
The legally endangered Cape Sable seaside-sparrow (Ammodramus maritimus mirabilis) is restricted to short-hydroperiod, marl prairies within Florida's Everglades National Park and Big Cypress National Preserve. Marl prairies are typified by dense, mixed stands of graminoid species usually below 1 m in height, naturally inundated by freshwater for 3-7 months annually. Water levels affect the birds directly, by flooding their nests, and indirectly by altering the habitat on which they depend. Managed redistribution of water flows flooded nearly half of the sparrow's geographical range during several consecutive breeding seasons starting in 1993. Furthermore, these high water levels rapidly changed plant communities, so jeopardizing the sparrow's survival by reducing the availability of nesting habitat.
Crimmins, Shawn M.; McKann, Patrick C.; Robb, Joseph R.; Lewis, Jason P.; Vanosdol, Teresa; Walker, Benjamin A.; Williams, Perry J.; Thogmartin, Wayne E.
Populations of Henslow’s Sparrows have declined dramatically in recent decades, coinciding with widespread loss of native grassland habitat. Prescribed burning is a primary tool for maintaining grassland patches, but its effects on nest survival of Henslow’s Sparrows remains largely unknown, especially in conjunction with other factors. We monitored 135 nests of Henslow’s Sparrows at Big Oaks National Wildlife Refuge in southern Indiana from 1998–2001 in an effort to understand factors influencing nest survival, including prescribed burning of habitat. We used a mixed-effects implementation of the logistic exposure model to predict daily nest survival in an information theoretic framework. We found that daily survival declined near the onset of hatching and increased with the height of standing dead vegetation, although this relationship was weak. We found only nominal support to suggest that time since burn influenced nest survival. Overall, nest age was the most important factor in estimating daily nest survival rates. Our daily survival estimate from our marginal model (0.937) was similar to that derived from the Mayfield method (0.944) suggesting that our results are comparable to previous studies using the Mayfield approach. Our results indicate that frequent burning to limit woody encroachment into grassland habitats might benefit Henslow’s Sparrow, but that a variety of factors ultimately influence daily nest survival. However, we note that burning too frequently can also limit occupancy by Henslow’s Sparrows. We suggest that additional research is needed to determine the population-level consequences of habitat alteration and if other extrinsic factors influence demographics of Henslow’s Sparrows.
Cade, B.S.; Dong, Q.
1. A quantile regression model for counts of breeding Cape Sable seaside sparrows Ammodramus maritimus mirabilis (L.) as a function of water depth and previous year abundance was developed based on extensive surveys, 1992-2005, in the Florida Everglades. The quantile count model extends linear quantile regression methods to discrete response variables, providing a flexible alternative to discrete parametric distributional models, e.g. Poisson, negative binomial and their zero-inflated counterparts. 2. Estimates from our multiplicative model demonstrated that negative effects of increasing water depth in breeding habitat on sparrow numbers were dependent on recent occupation history. Upper 10th percentiles of counts (one to three sparrows) decreased with increasing water depth from 0 to 30 cm when sites were not occupied in previous years. However, upper 40th percentiles of counts (one to six sparrows) decreased with increasing water depth for sites occupied in previous years. 3. Greatest decreases (-50% to -83%) in upper quantiles of sparrow counts occurred as water depths increased from 0 to 15 cm when previous year counts were 1, but a small proportion of sites (5-10%) held at least one sparrow even as water depths increased to 20 or 30 cm. 4. A zero-inflated Poisson regression model provided estimates of conditional means that also decreased with increasing water depth but rates of change were lower and decreased with increasing previous year counts compared to the quantile count model. Quantiles computed for the zero-inflated Poisson model enhanced interpretation of this model but had greater lack-of-fit for water depths > 0 cm and previous year counts 1, conditions where the negative effect of water depths were readily apparent and fitted better with the quantile count model.
Ellaway, A; Macdonald, L; Kearns, A
Background It is usually assumed that housing tenure and car access are associated with health simply because they are acting as markers for social class or income and wealth. However, previous studies conducted in the late 1990s found that these household assets were associated with health independently of social class and income. Here, we set out to examine if this is still the case. Methods We use data from our 2010 postal survey of a random sample of adults (n=2092) in 8 local authority areas in the West of Scotland. Self-reported health measures included limiting longstanding illness (LLSI), general health over the last year and the Hospital Anxiety and Depression Scale. Results We found a statistically significant relationship between housing tenure and all 4 health measures, regardless of the inclusion of social class or income as controls. Compared with owner occupiers, social renters were more likely to report ill-health (controlling for social class—LLSI OR: 3.24, general health OR: 2.82, anxiety η2: 0.031, depression η2: 0.048, controlling for income—LLSI OR: 3.28, general health OR: 2.82, anxiety η2: 0.033, depression η2: 0.057) (p<0.001 for all models). Car ownership was independently associated with depression and anxiety, with non-owners at higher risk of both (controlling for income—anxiety η2: 0.010, depression η2: 0.023, controlling for social class—anxiety η2: 0.013, depression η2: 0.033) (p<0.001 for all models). Conclusions Our results show that housing tenure and car ownership are still associated with health, after taking known correlates (age, sex, social class, income) into account. Further research is required to unpack some of the features of these household assets such as the quality of the dwelling and access to and use of different forms of transport to determine what health benefits or disbenefits they may be associated with in different contexts. PMID:27807086
Slager, David L
The genus Spizella (Bonaparte) contains seven species of North American sparrows in the recently resurrected family Passerellidae (Bock 1994; Barker et al. 2013), formerly placed in the Emberizidae, and includes a few of the region's most common and familiar bird species. Spizella sparrows occupy more or less open habitats; most species are at least partially migratory and form small flocks when not breeding. On the basis of their similar morphology and behavior, they have long been treated as a natural group (Ridgway 1901; American Ornithologists' Union 1998).
Bingman, V P; Able, K P; Siegel, J J
The avian hippocampal formation is known to participate in naturally occurring spatial behavior such as homing in pigeons and cache recovery in food storing passerines, but its participation in the often spectacular migrations of birds remains uncertain. As a first investigation into the possible role of hippocampal formation in migration, the effect of hippocampal formation lesions on the geomagnetic migratory orientation of Savannah sparrows was examined. When tested indoors, hippocampal formation-lesioned sparrows were able to orient in an appropriate migratory direction indicating no necessary role for hippocampal formation in geomagnetic migratory orientation. However, hippocampal formation-lesioned birds displayed significantly less migratory (nocturnal) activity, a result that inspires further study.
Unwin, Brian K; Tatum, Paul E
House calls provide a unique perspective on patients' environment and health problems. The demand for house calls is expected to increase considerably in future decades as the U.S. population ages. Although study results have been inconsistent, house calls involving multidisciplinary teams may reduce hospital readmissions and long-term care facility stays. Common indications for house calls are management of acute or chronic illnesses, and palliative care. Medicare beneficiaries must meet specific criteria to be eligible for home health services. The INHOMESSS mnemonic provides a checklist for components of a comprehensive house call. In addition to performing a clinical assessment, house calls may involve observing the patient performing daily activities, reconciling medication discrepancies, and evaluating home safety. House calls can be integrated into practice with careful planning, including clustering house calls by geographic location and coordinating visits with other health care professionals and agencies.
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Greenberg, Russell; Etterson, Matthew; Danner, Raymond M
Bill size is often viewed as a species-specific adaptation for feeding, but it sometimes varies between sexes, suggesting that sexual selection or intersexual competition may also be important. Hypotheses to explain sexual dimorphism in avian bill size include divergence in feeding niche or thermoregulatory demands, intrasexual selection based on increased competition among males, or female preference. Birds also show seasonal changes in bill size due to shifts in the balance between growth rate and wear, which may be due to diet or endogenous rhythms in growth. Insight into the function of dimorphism can be gained using the novel approach of digital x-ray imaging of museum skins to examine the degree to which the skeletal core or the rhamphotheca contribute to overall dimorphism. The rhamphotheca is ever-growing and ever-wearing, varying in size throughout life; whereas the skeletal core shows determinant growth. Because tidal marsh sparrows are more dimorphic in bill size than related taxa, we selected two marsh taxa to investigate dimorphism and seasonality in the size of the overall bill, the skeletal core, and the rhamphotheca. Bill size varied by sex and season, with males having larger bills than females, and bill size increasing from nonbreeding to breeding season more in males. Skeletal bill size varied with season, but not sex. The rhamphotheca varied primarily with sex; males had a larger rhamphotheca (corrected for skeletal bill size), which showed a greater seasonal increase than females. The rhamphotheca, rather than the skeletal bill, was responsible for sexual dimorphism in overall bill size, which was particularly well developed in the breeding season. The size of the rhamphotheca may be a condition-based character that is shaped by sexual selection. These results are consistent with the evidence that bill size is influenced by sexual selection as well as trophic ecology. PMID:23467758
Reviews some of the efforts of the Society for the Preservation of New England Antiquities (SPNEA) to preserve, conserve, and interpret historic houses to the public. Examines the history and some of the specific preservation problems concerning the Beauport Cottage, the Sayward-Wheeler House, and the Gropius House. (MJP)
Milkove, Daniel L., Comp.
Defines substandard housing and summarizes newly derived data from the 1980 Census showing that 7.5% of all rural occupied housing in the Nation was substandard. Points out regional and rural-urban differences. Notes effects on rural housing of poverty rates, percentage of nonwhite households, average household size, growth in county population,…
Lah, Ernieenor Faraliana Che; Musa, Raja Noor Azreen Raja; Ming, Ho Tze
Objective To examined the immediate and 24 hours post- irradiation germicidal effects of UV-C lamp on eggs and adults of house dust mites Dermatophagoides pteronyssinus (D. pteronyssinus) and Dermatophagoides farinae (D. farinae). Methods This study investigated the immediate and 24 hours post irradiation mortalities of adult mites exposed to UV-C at different exposure times (5 mins, 10 mins, 15 mins, 20 mins, 30 mins and 60 mins) and distances (10 cm, 25 cm, 35 cm, 45 cm and 55 cm). Fresh eggs of the 2 dust mites were also irradiated at 10, 35 and 55 cm for 0.5, 1, 2, 3, and 5 minutes, and observed daily post- irradiation for up to 7 days. Results Highest immediate mortality of 100% occurred with direct irradiation at 10 cm distance from UV-C lamp and for 60 mins, for both species of mites. The post 24 hours mean mortality rates were (58.4±17.4)% for D. pteronyssinus and (27.7±9.7)% for D. farinae when irradiated for 1 hour at 55 cm distance under UV-C lamp. When mites were irradiated in the presence of culture media, the highest mortality rates were lower compared to the direct irradiation; at 10 cm distance and 60 mins exposure, the mean mortality was (74.0±6.8)% for D. pteronyssinus and (70.3±6.7)% for D. farinae. Egg hatchability for both species of mites was also notably reduced by greater than 50% following irradiation. Conclusions Ultraviolet C irradiation is lethal to an array of organisms by damaging their nucleic acids (DNA and RNA). This study demonstrates the increasing mite mortalities with increasing exposure times and decreasing distances. PMID:23569994
Aidala, Angela A; Sumartojo, Esther
Housing/lack of housing and HIV are powerfully linked. Housing occupies an important place in the causal chains linking poverty and inequality, and HIV risk and outcomes of infection. The articles in this Special Supplement of AIDS and Behavior confirm the impact of homelessness, and poor or unstable housing, on HIV/AIDS, and challenge scientists to test and policy makers to implement the promise of housing as an innovative response to the epidemic. In order to influence the development of policies on housing to benefit at-risk or HIV-infected persons, however, proponents must justify why this association exists, and how housing can help end the epidemic as well as improve the care and health of persons living with HIV/AIDS. We introduce this supplement with a discussion of the "why" question.
Saltmarsh Sparrows (hereafter SALS) are named on the National Audubon Society’s current WatchList as a species of global conservation concern (National Audubon Society 2007). Anthropogenic climate change is perhaps the largest threat to SALS populations because sea level ri...
The Seaside Sparrow (Ammodramus maritimus) is currently listed as a species of ‘special concern’ in Rhode Island and has been designated as a ‘watch list’ species in the Partners in Flight North American Landbird Conservation Plan. To assess the population status of breeding Seas...
Winter, M.; Shaffer, J.A.; Johnson, D.H.; Donovan, T.M.; Svedarsky, W.D.; Jones, P.W.; Euliss, B.R.
Little is known about the breeding biology of the Le Conte's Sparrow (Ammodramus leconteii), probably because of its secretive nature. We provide new information on several aspects of Le Conte's Sparrow breeding biology, including rates of nest parasitism by Brown-headed Cowbirds (Molothrus ater) and potential factors affecting breeding densities and nesting success of the species. Our study was conducted in the tallgrass prairie of northwestern Minnesota and southeastern North Dakota during 1998-2002. Breeding densities varied among years, but this variation was not clearly linked to climatic patterns. Vegetation had some influence on densities of Le Conte's Sparrows; densities were highest in grasslands with moderate amounts of bare ground. Prairie patch size and the percentage of shrubs and trees in the landscape had no recognizable influence on density. Nesting success was highly variable among sites and years and increased slightly with distance from trees. Rates of nest parasitism were low (1 of 50 nests parasitized), and clutch sizes were similar to those of other studies of Le Conte's Sparrows.
Zhao, Baihui; Zhang, Xi; Zhu, Wenfei; Teng, Zheng; Yu, Xuelian; Gao, Ye; Wu, Di; Pei, Enle; Yuan, Zhengan; Yang, Lei; Wang, Dayan; Shu, Yuelong; Wu, Fan
In spring 2013, influenza A(H7N9) virus was isolated from an apparently healthy tree sparrow in Chongming Dongping National Forest Park, Shanghai City, China. The entire gene constellation of the virus is similar to that of isolates from humans, highlighting the need to monitor influenza A(H7N9) viruses in different species.
To assess the possible effects of residential development on nesting populations of Seaside Sparrow (Ammodramus maritimus), we repeated a 1982 survey conducted by Stoll and Golet. In June and July 2007, 23 RI salt marshes were surveyed in their entirety for the presenc...
Ator, Scott; Brakebill, John W.; Blomquist, Joel D.
This file contains 200 sets of bootstrap-estimated land-to-water coefficients from the CBTN_v4 SPARROW model, which is documented in USGS Scientific Investigations Report 2011-5167. The coefficients were produced as part of CBTN_v4 model calibration to provide information about the uncertainty in model estimates.
Monroe, M.S.; Ritchison, G.
Populations of Henslow's Sparrows (Ammodramus henslowii) arc declining, and loss of habitat is a likely factor. Coal mine reclamation has created grassland habitat in Kentucky and elsewhere, and information is needed concerning the use of these areas by Henslow's Sparrows. We compared the behavior and ecology of populations on reclaimed sites and non-mined sites in west-central Kentucky during the 2000 and 2001 breeding seasons. Territories were smaller on the reclaimed sites than unmined sites, perhaps due to differences in habitat quality. Insect sweeps revealed more prey biomass on reclaimed sites than unmined sites. Twenty-eight of 48 nests (58%) fledged at least one young, and nesting success was similar on reclaimed and unmined sites. Mean clutch size was 3.75, with no difference between reclaimed and unmined sites. Similarly, the mean number of fledglings per nest was similar on reclaimed and unmined sites. Multivariate analysis revealed differences in the characteristics of vegetation on reclaimed areas and unmined areas. Reclaimed areas had more grass cover and greater vegetation density, probably due to differences in management history (i.e., mowing or burning) and species composition. Our results indicate that the nesting success of Henslow's Sparrows on reclaimed surface mines in Kentucky is comparable to that on unmined areas. As such, the thousand of hectares of reclaimed surface mines in Kentucky and elsewhere could play an important role in stabilizing populations of Henslow's Sparrows.
To assess long-term changes in the population status of breeding Ammodramus maritimus Wilson (Seaside Sparrow) in Rhode Island, we repeated surveys conducted in 1982 by Stoll and Golet (1983). In June and July of 2007 and 2008, we surveyed 20 of Rhode Island’s largest salt ...
Reduction of nitrogen inputs to estuaries can be achieved by the control of agricultural, atmospheric, and urban sources. We use the USGS MRB1 SPARROW model to estimate reductions necessary to decrease nitrogen loads to estuaries by 10%. As a first approximation we looked at s...
Ruth, Janet M.
The Grasshopper Sparrow (Ammodramus savannarum) breeds in grassland habitats throughout much of the U.S., southern and southeastern Canada, and northern Mexico. Additional subspecies are resident in Central America, northern South America, and the Caribbean. It winters primarily in the coastal states of the southeastern U.S., southern portions of the southwestern states, and in Mexico, Central America, and the Caribbean. The species prefers relatively open grassland with intermediate grass height and density and patchy bare ground; because it is widely distributed across different grassland types in North America, it selects different vegetation structure and species composition depending on what is available. In the winter, they use a broader range of grassland habitats including open grasslands, as well as weedy fields and grasslands with woody vegetation. Analyses show significant range-wide population declines from the late 1960s through the present, primarily caused by habitat loss, degradation, and fragmentation. Grasshopper Sparrow is still a relatively common and broadly distributed species, but because of significant population declines and stakeholder concerns, the species is considered of conservation concern nationally and at the state level for numerous states. Many factors, often related to different grassland management practices (e.g., grazing, burning, mowing, management of shrub encroachment, etc.) throughout the species’ range, have impacts on Grasshopper Sparrow distribution, abundance, and reproduction and may represent limiting factors or threats given steep declines in this species’ population. Because of the concerns for this species, Grasshopper Sparrow has been identified as a focal species by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) and this Status Assessment and Conservation Plan for Grasshopper Sparrow has been developed. Through literature searches and input from stakeholders across its range, this plan presents information about
Hill, Jason M; Diefenbach, Duane R
Organisms can be affected by processes in the surrounding landscape outside the boundary of habitat areas and by local vegetation characteristics. There is substantial interest in understanding how these processes affect populations of grassland birds, which have experienced substantial population declines. Much of our knowledge regarding patterns of occupancy and density stem from prairie systems, whereas relatively little is known regarding how occurrence and abundance of grassland birds vary in reclaimed surface mine grasslands. Using distance sampling and single-season occupancy models, we investigated how the occupancy probability of Grasshopper (Ammodramus savannarum) and Henslow's Sparrows (A. henslowii) on 61 surface mine grasslands (1591 ha) in Pennsylvania changed from 2002 through 2011 in response to landscape, grassland, and local vegetation characteristics . A subset (n = 23; 784 ha) of those grasslands were surveyed in 2002, and we estimated changes in sparrow density and vegetation across 10 years. Grasshopper and Henslow's Sparrow populations declined 72% and 49%, respectively from 2002 to 2011, whereas overall woody vegetation density increased 2.6 fold. Henslow's Sparrows avoided grasslands with perimeter-area ratios ≥0.141 km/ha and woody shrub densities ≥0.04 shrubs/m(2). Both species occupied grasslands ≤13 ha, but occupancy probability declined with increasing grassland perimeter-area ratio and woody shrub density. Grassland size, proximity to nearest neighboring grassland (x = 0.2 km), and surrounding landscape composition at 0.5, 1.5, and 3.0 km were not parsimonious predictors of occupancy probability for either species. Our results suggest that reclaimed surface mine grasslands, without management intervention, are ephemeral habitats for Grasshopper and Henslow's Sparrows. Given the forecasted decline in surface coal production for Pennsylvania, it is likely that both species will continue to decline in our study region for the
Sperry, Todd S; Wacker, Douglas W; Wingfield, John C
This paper examines the role that androgen receptors (ARs) play in modulating aggressive behavior in male song sparrows, Melospiza melodia morphna. Song sparrows are seasonally breeding, territorial birds that maintain year-round territories with male-female pair bonds formed during the spring breeding season. Plasma testosterone levels peak as territories are established and mates acquired. In late summer, testosterone levels fall and remain basal during the non-breeding season. We examined the role of ARs in regulating territorial aggression in captive song sparrows under short- and long-day conditions as well as just prior to, and at the start of the breading season in freely living birds using the nonsteroidal antiandrogen flutamide to block AR function. Birds were implanted with either empty or drug filled silastic implants for 18 to 42 days and then challenged with a novel male decoy to assess the individual birds level of male-male aggression. Freely living birds remained on their home territory and underwent a simulated territorial intrusion, whereas laboratory-held birds were assessed using a laboratory simulated territorial intrusion and remained in their home cage. Experimental treatment of male song sparrows decreased aggressive behavior during the pre-breeding life history substage (March-April) in freely living birds as well as in laboratory-held birds under long-day (16L:8D) conditions. During the early breeding substage (April-May) there was no measurable effect of flutamide treatment on aggressive behavior, nor was there a difference in behavior in the (8L:16D) laboratory birds. This demonstrates that ARs are an important component of the neuroendocrine control of aggressive behavior. Given that flutamide only affected aggression during the pre-breeding substage and in LD birds, the results suggest that AR dependent control of aggressive behavior changes as song sparrow life history states change.
Miller, Katherine S.; McCarthy, Erin M.; Woodin, Marc C.; Withers, Kim
Very little information is available for Peucaea botterii texana (Texas Botteri’s Sparrow) and nothing is known about its nesting ecology, in part due to its cryptic behavior and nesting strategies. Our goal was to examine the nesting ecology of Texas Botteri’s Sparrows and compare reproductive success between exotic and native grass- lands. We searched for and monitored nests in 2004 and 2005 on the King Ranch in southern Texas. We found no relationship in reproductive effort, nest characteristics, and plant species richness around the nest between grassland types. Vegetation surrounding Texas Botteri's Sparrow nests was significantly taller and denser in native grasslands than in exotic grasslands. Further research on nesting ecology for the Texas Botteri’s Sparrow is necessary to determine its habitat needs and its role as an indicator of grassland quality.
Guo, Tai L; Meng, Andrew H
Despite many hypothesized benefits of dietary isoflavone genistein (GEN) deriving from soy-based products, questions surrounding GEN's developmental immunotoxic effects are increasing. To understand how in utero GEN exposure may modulate postnatal respiratory sensitization, we conducted a time course study using a common household allergen (house dust mites: HDM; 10μg/mouse) following intranasal instillation, a physiological route of allergen exposure. GEN was administered to dams by gavage from gestational day 14 to parturition at a physiologically relevant dose (20mg/kg bw). Female and male offspring were sensitized with HDM allergens beginning about one month prior to sacrifice followed by challenges with three weekly doses of HDM extracts, and they were euthanized at day 3 following the final HDM exposure at four different time points (postnatal day (PND) 80, 120, 160, and 200). In utero GEN combined with postnatal HDM exposures (GEN+HDM) increased total IgE production in both young female and male B6C3F1 offspring (e.g., PND 80 in females and PND 120 in males). Increased antigen-specific IgG1, IgG2a and IgG2b levels were also observed at various time points in both female and male offspring. In addition, increases in macrophage number in bronchoalveolar lavage fluid of both female and male GEN+HDM offspring at PND 80 and PND 120, respectively, were observed when compared to the vehicle group. For T cells, an increase over the vehicle in female GEN+HDM offspring was observed at PND 80. Due to similar patterns of increases, it seems likely that GEN+HDM-induced increases in total IgE and macrophages are related. Overall, in utero GEN plus later-life HDM exposures exert increases in total IgE and HDM-specific IgG production as well as macrophage recruitments to the lung in young adult mice.
Wang, J; Engvall, K; Smedje, G; Nilsson, H; Norbäck, D
In the Swedish Building Energy, Technical Status and Indoor environment study, a total of 1160 adults from 605 single-family houses answered a questionnaire on respiratory health. Building inspectors investigated the homes and measured temperature, air humidity, air exchange rate, and wood moisture content (in attic and crawl space). Moisture load was calculated as the difference between indoor and outdoor absolute humidity. Totally, 7.3% were smokers, 8.7% had doctor' diagnosed asthma, 11.2% current wheeze, and 9.5% current asthma symptoms. Totally, 50.3% had respiratory infections and 26.0% rhinitis. The mean air exchange rate was 0.36/h, and the mean moisture load 1.70 g/m(3) . Damp foundation (OR=1.79, 95% CI 1.16-2.78) was positively associated while floor constructions with crawl space (OR=0.49, 95% CI 0.29-0.84) was negatively associated with wheeze. Concrete slabs with overlying insulation (OR=2.21, 95% CI 1.24-3.92) and brick façade (OR=1.71, 95% CI 1.07-2.73) were associated with rhinitis. Moisture load was associated with respiratory infections (OR=1.21 per 1 g/m(3) , 95% CI 1.04-1.40) and rhinitis (OR=1.36 per 1 g/m(3) , 95% CI 1.02-1.83). Air exchange rate was associated with current asthma symptoms (OR=0.85 per 0.1/h, 95% CI 0.73-0.99). Living in homes with damp foundation, concrete slabs with overlying insulation, brick façade, low ventilation flow, and high moisture load are risk factors for asthma, rhinitis, and respiratory infections.
Baran, Nancy H., Ed.
This booklet is designed to help individuals make housing decisions in an informed, rational manner. It is suitable for personal use by adults or for classroom use in junior high through adult home economics or consumer education classes. After helping the reader determine needs and wants and how much money is available for housing, the booklet…
Akesson, S; Morin, J; Muheim, R; Ottosson, U
The Earth's magnetic field and celestial cues provide animals with compass information during migration. Inherited magnetic compass courses are selected based on the angle of inclination, making it difficult to orient in the near vertical fields found at high geomagnetic latitudes. Orientation cage experiments were performed at different sites in high Arctic Canada with adult and young white-crowned sparrows (Zonotrichia leucophrys gambelii) in order to investigate birds' ability to use the Earth's magnetic field and celestial cues for orientation in naturally very steep magnetic fields at and close to the magnetic North Pole. Experiments were performed during the natural period of migration at night in the local geomagnetic field under natural clear skies and under simulated total overcast conditions. The experimental birds failed to select a meaningful magnetic compass course under overcast conditions at the magnetic North Pole, but could do so in geomagnetic fields deviating less than 3 degrees from the vertical. Migratory orientation was successful at all sites when celestial cues were available.
American Association of Retired Persons, Washington, DC. Consumer Housing Information Service for Seniors.
This is one of a series of booklets prepared as a resource for trained Housing Information Volunteers to provide impartial information to older people who have questions of concern about how to find safe, comfortable, affordable housing; how to cut household expenses or use their homes to earn extra income; home maintenance and home improvement;…
This testimony, before a public hearing of the New York City Commission on Human Rights in May 1974, summarizes the implications of a study done at the Joint Center for Urban Studies of the number and characteristics of families that will buy a house, and what kind of housing problems they have, for the relative status of blacks or whites or other…
In this article, the author describes a project designed for fourth-graders that involves making clay relief sculptures of houses. Knowing the clay houses will become a family heirloom makes this lesson even more worth the time. It takes three classes to plan and form the clay, and another two to underglaze and glaze the final products.
Lester, Michael B.; van Riper, Charles
Heavy metals are persistent environmental contaminants, and transport of metals into the environment poses a threat to ecosystems, as plants and wildlife are susceptible to long-term exposure, bioaccumulation, and potential toxicity. We investigated the distribution and cascading extent of heavy metal accumulation in southwestern song sparrows (Melospiza melodia fallax), a resident riparian bird species that occurs along the US/Mexico border in Arizona’s upper Santa Cruz River watershed. This study had three goals: (1) quantify the degree of heavy metal accumulation in sparrows and determine the distributional patterns among study sites, (2) compare concentrations of metals found in this study to those found in studies performed prior to a 2009 international wastewater facility upgrade, and (3) assess the condition of song sparrows among sites with differing potential levels of exposure. We examined five study sites along with a reference site that reflect different potential sources of contamination. Body mass residuals and leukocyte counts were used to assess sparrow condition. Birds at our study sites typically had higher metal concentrations than birds at the reference site. Copper, mercury, nickel, and selenium in song sparrows did exceed background levels, although most metals were below background concentrations determined from previous studies. Song sparrows generally showed lower heavy metal concentrations compared to studies conducted prior to the 2009 wastewater facility upgrade. We found no cascading effects as a result of metal exposure.
Kern, Michael D.; Sogge, Mark K.; van Riper, Charles
The water-vapor pressure (PN) in nests of the San Miguel Island race of Song Sparrows (Melospiza melodia micronyx) averaged 16 torr, but varied considerable between nests and within individual nests during successive days of incubation. Large daily fluctuations occurred throughout the incubation period and did not parallel concurrent changes in ambien vapor pressure (P1). Daily rates of water loss from nest eggs (MH2O) averaged 28 mg day-1, but also varied considerable within and between nests and did not correlate with changes in P1. MH2O increased 6-33% after the third day of incubation. PN was significantly higher and MH2O significantly lower in nests located in sheltered gullies than in nests from a windswept slope. These data suggest that Song Sparrows do not regulate PN to achieve hatching success.
Sewall, Kendra B.; Dankoski, Elyse C.; Sockman, Keith W.
Male songbirds often establish territories and attract mates by singing, and some song features can reflect the singer’s condition or quality. The quality of the song environment can change, so male songbirds should benefit from assessing the competitiveness of the song environment and appropriately adjusting their own singing behavior and the neural substrates by which song is controlled. In a wide range of taxa social modulation of behavior is partly mediated by the arginine vasopressin or vasotocin (AVP/AVT) systems. To examine the modulation of singing behavior in response to the quality of the song environment we compared the song output of laboratory-housed male Lincoln’s sparrows (Melospiza lincolnii) exposed to one week of chronic playback of songs categorized as either high or low quality, based on song length, complexity and trill performance. To explore the neural basis of any facultative shifts in behavior, we also quantified the subjects’ AVT immunoreactivity (AVT-IR) in three forebrain regions that regulate socio-sexual behavior: the medial bed nucleus of the stria terminalis (BSTm), the lateral septum (LS) and the preoptic area. We found that high quality songs increased singing effort and reduced AVT-IR in the BSTm and LS, relative to low quality songs. The effect of the quality of the song environment on both singing effort and forebrain AVT-IR raises the hypothesis that AVT within these brain regions plays a role in the modulation of behavior in response to competition that individual males may assess from the prevailing song environment. PMID:20399213
weather, and food availability (Gwinner and Helm 2003). The most extraordinary examples of seasonal migration occur in birds, many species of which...from infrared camera. Bright object at the center of the screen is the source for the infrared motion detection beam. DOI:10.1371/journal.pbio...White-Crowned Sparrow Captured on surveillance camera. Bright object at the center of the screen is the source for the infrared motion detection beam
Dunning, J.B.; Danielson, B.J.; Watts, B.D.; Liu, J.; Krementz, D.R.
Mutual interests between land managers at SRS and scientists resulted in a landscape ecology study of Bachman's sparrow. The species is declining throughout it's range. The distribution of suitable habitats across the landscape may provide an explanation. The species occupies early successional and late successional savanna habitat. Modeling was closely linked to field observations to demonstrate how the species demographics change with the distribution and dynamics of habitats.
Davis, Jamie K; Thomas, Pamela J; Thomas, James W
A hallmark feature of the male-specific region of the human Y chromosome is the presence of large and near-identical palindromes. These palindromes are maintained in a state of near identity via gene conversion between the arms of the palindrome, and both neutral and selection-based theories have been proposed to explain their enrichment on the human Y and X chromosomes. While those proposed theories would be applicable to sex chromosomes in other species, it has not been established whether near-identical palindromes are a common feature of sex chromosomes in a broader range of taxa, including other tetrapods. Here, we report the genomic sequencing and features of a 279-kb region of the non-recombining portion of the W chromosome spanning the CHD1W locus in a New World sparrow, the white-throated sparrow (Zonotrichia albicollis), and the corresponding region on the Z chromosome. As has been observed for other Y and W chromosomes, we detected a high repetitive element content (51%) and low gene content on the white-throated sparrow W chromosome. In addition, we identified a 22-kb near-identical (>99%) palindrome on the W chromosome that flanks the 5' end of the CHD1W gene. Signatures of gene conversion were readily detected between the arms of this palindrome, as was the presence of this palindrome in other New World sparrows and blackbirds. Near-identical palindromes are therefore present on the avian W chromosome and may persist due to the same forces proposed for the enrichment of these elements on the human sex chromosomes.
Discusses the "house" concept architectural design at Albert Lea High School (Minnesota) and how the design addresses the community's 21st Century educational goals. Photos and a floor plan are included. (GR)
Robertson, Dale M.; Saad, David A.
Nitrogen (N) and phosphorus (P) loading from the Mississippi/Atchafalaya River Basin (MARB) has been linked to hypoxia in the Gulf of Mexico. To describe where and from what sources those loads originate, SPAtially Referenced Regression On Watershed attributes (SPARROW) models were constructed for the MARB using geospatial datasets for 2002, including inputs from wastewater treatment plants (WWTPs), and calibration sites throughout the MARB. Previous studies found that highest N and P yields were from the north-central part of the MARB (Corn Belt). Based on the MARB SPARROW models, highest N yields were still from the Corn Belt but centered over Iowa and Indiana, and highest P yields were widely distributed throughout the center of the MARB. Similar to that found in other studies, agricultural inputs were found to be the largest N and P sources throughout most of the MARB: farm fertilizers were the largest N source, whereas farm fertilizers, manure, and urban inputs were dominant P sources. The MARB models enable individual N and P sources to be defined at scales ranging from SPARROW catchments (∼50 km2) to the entire area of the MARB. Inputs of P from WWTPs and urban areas were more important than found in most other studies. Information from this study will help to reduce nutrient loading from the MARB by providing managers with a description of where each of the sources of N and P are most important, thus providing a basis for prioritizing management actions and ultimately reducing the extent of Gulf hypoxia.
Greenberg, R.; Cordero, P.J.; Droege, S.; Fleischer, R.C.
We estimated genetic differentiation between morphologically distinct tidal marsh populations of Swamp Sparrows (Melospiza georgiana nigrescens) and the more wide-spread inland populations (M. g. georgiana and M. g. ericrypta). The tidal marsh populations are consistently grayer with more extensive black markings (particularly in the crown), and their bills are larger. These differences are variously shared with other species of salt marsh birds and small mammals. We analyzed mitochondrial DNA sequences (5' end of control region, COII/tlys/ATPase8, and ND2) of Swamp Sparrows and found low levels of genetic variation and no evidence of geographic structure. These results suggest a rapid and recent geographic expansion of Swamp Sparrows from restricted Pleistocene populations. Morphological differentiation has occurred without long-term genetic isolation, suggesting that selection on the divergent traits is intense. The grayer and more melanistic plumage is probably cryptic coloration for foraging on tidal mud, which tends to be grayish as a result of the formation of iron sulfides, rather than iron oxides, under anaerobic conditions.
Carson, Rebecca J; Spicer, Greg S
Previous molecular phylogenetic studies have examined the taxonomic relationships among a number of typical emberizid sparrow genera. To help clarify these relationships, we sequenced a 1673 base pair fragment for the complete sequence of three mitochondrial genes: adenosine triphosphatase (Atp8 and Atp6) and cytochrome oxidase subunit III (COIII) for 38 sparrow species, along with Passerina amoena (Cardinalidae) and Piranga ludoviciana (Thraupidae) which were selected as the outgroups. Our analysis confirms the monophyly of traditional genera such as Junco, Melospiza, and Zonotrichia. Although Calcarius and Plectrophenax are often thought to be putative emberizids, all our analyses placed these genera basal to all other sparrows examined. As observed with Calcarius, Spizella did not form a monophyletic group, with S. arborea being the sister-taxon to Passerella iliaca. Our analyses also suggest that Aimophila ruficeps is probably more closely related to the "brown towhees" (Pipilo aberti, P. crissalis, and P. fuscus) than its putative congeners. The genus Ammodramus was also not monophyletic, since it appears that Passerculus sandwichensis is more closely related to A. henslowii and A. leconteii then either one is related to its congener A. savannarum. Finally, our analyses exhibited other unsuspected associations, such as the sister-taxon relationships between Amphispiza bilineata and the Chondestes grammacus/Calamospiza melanocorys clade, and Amphispiza belli and Pooecetes gramineus.
Beerens, James M.; Romañach, Stephanie S.; McKelvy, Mark
The endangered Cape Sable seaside sparrow (Ammodramus maritimus mirabilis) is endemic to south Florida and a key indicator species of marl prairie, a highly diverse freshwater community in the Florida Everglades. Maintenance and creation of suitable habitat is seen as the most important pathway to the persistence of the six existing sparrow subpopulations; however, major uncertainties remain in how to increase suitable habitat within and surrounding these subpopulations, which are vulnerable to environmental stochasticity. Currently, consistently suitable conditions for the Cape Sable seaside sparrow are only present in two of these subpopulations (B and E). The water management scenarios evaluated herein were intended to lower water levels and improve habitat conditions in subpopulation A and D, raise water levels to improve habitat conditions in subpopulations C and F, and minimize impacts to subpopulations B and E. Our objective in this analysis was to compare these scenarios utilizing a set of metrics (short- to long-time scales) that relate habitat suitability to hydrologic conditions. Although hydrologic outputs are similar across scenarios in subpopulation A, scenario R2H reaches the hydroperiod and depth suitability targets more than the other scenarios relative to ECB, while minimizing negative consequences to subpopulation E. However, although R2H hydroperiods are longer than those for ECB during the wet season in subpopulations C and F, depths during the breeding season are predicted to decrease in suitability (less than -50 cm) relative to existing conditions.
Wood, Petra; Ammer, Frank K.
We studied 3 mountaintop mining–valley fill (MTMVF) complexes in southern West Virginia, USA to examine grasshopper sparrow (Ammodramus savannarum pratensis) demographic response to different age classes of mine land reclamation. For 71 nests monitored during the 2001–2002 breeding seasons, overall nest success (36%) was within the range of nest success rates previously reported for this species, but it was highest on more recently reclaimed sites (56%). Nest density and clutch size did not differ (P > 0.30) among reclamation age classes, whereas number of fledglings was greater (P = 0.01) on more recently reclaimed sites. We measured vegetation variables at 70 nest subplots and at 96 systematic subplots to compare nest vegetation with vegetation available on the plots. We found that nests occurred in areas with more bare ground near the nest, greater vegetation height–density surrounding the nest site, lower grass height, and fewer woody stems, similar to previous studies. As postreclamation age increased, vegetation height–density and maximum grass height increased, and sericea (Lespedeza cuneata) became more dominant. Nest success declined with increasing vegetation height–density at the nest. The grasslands available on these reclaimed mine complexes are of sufficient quality to support breeding populations of grasshopper sparrows, but nest success decreased on the older reclaimed areas. Without active management, grasslands on reclaimed MTMVF mines become less suitable for nesting grasshopper sparrows about 10 years after reclamation.
Robertson, Dale M; Saad, David A
Nitrogen (N) and phosphorus (P) loading from the Mississippi/Atchafalaya River Basin (MARB) has been linked to hypoxia in the Gulf of Mexico. To describe where and from what sources those loads originate, SPAtially Referenced Regression On Watershed attributes (SPARROW) models were constructed for the MARB using geospatial datasets for 2002, including inputs from wastewater treatment plants (WWTPs), and calibration sites throughout the MARB. Previous studies found that highest N and P yields were from the north-central part of the MARB (Corn Belt). Based on the MARB SPARROW models, highest N yields were still from the Corn Belt but centered over Iowa and Indiana, and highest P yields were widely distributed throughout the center of the MARB. Similar to that found in other studies, agricultural inputs were found to be the largest N and P sources throughout most of the MARB: farm fertilizers were the largest N source, whereas farm fertilizers, manure, and urban inputs were dominant P sources. The MARB models enable individual N and P sources to be defined at scales ranging from SPARROW catchments (∼50 km) to the entire area of the MARB. Inputs of P from WWTPs and urban areas were more important than found in most other studies. Information from this study will help to reduce nutrient loading from the MARB by providing managers with a description of where each of the sources of N and P are most important, thus providing a basis for prioritizing management actions and ultimately reducing the extent of Gulf hypoxia.
Lenske, Ariel K; La, Van T
Animals can use acoustic signals to attract mates and defend territories. As a consequence, background noise that interferes with signal transmission has the potential to reduce fitness, especially in birds that rely on song. While much research on bird song has investigated vocal flexibility in response to urban noise, weather and other birds, the possibility of inter-class acoustic competition from anurans has not been previously studied. Using sound recordings from central Ontario wetlands, we tested if white-throated sparrows (Zonotrichia albicolis) make short-term changes to their singing behaviour in response to chorusing spring peepers (Pseudacris crucifer), as well as to car noise, wind and other bird vocalizations. White-throated sparrow songs that were sung during the spring peeper chorus were shorter with higher minimum frequencies and narrower bandwidths resulting in reduced frequency overlap. Additionally, sparrows were less likely to sing when car noise and the vocalizations of other birds were present. These patterns suggest that birds use multiple adjustment strategies. This is the first report to demonstrate that birds may alter their songs differentially in response to different sources of noise. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled: insert SI title.
Pearson, Carol; Montgomery, Ann Elizabeth; Locke, Gretchen
This article presents findings from an exploratory study of three programs using the Housing First approach to provide permanent supportive housing for single, homeless adults with serious mental illness and often co-occurring substance-related disorders. This approach provides direct, or nearly direct, access to housing that is intended to be…
O'Campo, Patricia; Stergiopoulos, Vicky; Nir, Pam; Levy, Matthew; Misir, Vachan; Chum, Antony; Arbach, Bouchra; Nisenbaum, Rosane; To, Matthew J; Hwang, Stephen W
Objectives We studied the impact of a Housing First (HF) intervention on housing, contact with the justice system, healthcare usage and health outcomes among At Home/Chez Soi randomised trial participants in Toronto, a city with an extensive service network for social and health services for individuals who are experiencing homelessness and mental illness. Methods Participants identified as high needs were randomised to receive either the intervention which provided them with housing and supports by an assertive community treatment team (HF+ACT) or treatment as usual (TAU). Participants (N=197) had in-person interviews every 3 months for 2 years. Results The HF+ACT group spent more time stably housed compared to the TAU group with the mean difference between the groups of 45.8% (95% CI 37.1% to 54.4%, p<0.0001). Accounting for baseline differences, HF+ACT group showed significant improvements over TAU group for community functioning, selected quality-of-life subscales and arrests at some time points during follow-up. No differences between HF+ACT and TAU groups over the follow-up were observed for health service usage, community integration and substance use. Conclusions HF for individuals with high levels of need increased housing stability and selected health and justice outcomes over 2 years in a city with many social and health services. Trial registration number ISRCTN42520374. PMID:27619826
Prevention of Cruelty to Animals USEPA U.S. Environmental Protection Agency USGS U.S. Geologic Survey Page 1-1 1.0 PURPOSE OF AND NEED FOR THE PROPOSED...species of sparrows (North Wind, 2005). There are no animal or plant species that are federally listed as Threatened, Endangered, or Species of...Special Concern identified at the former CAFB Housing Annex. Likewise, there are no federal or state protected, threatened or endangered species ( animal
Building specifications for birdhouses (nesting boxes) are given for 11 species (chickadee, titmouse, nuthatch, Carolina wren, house wren, downy woodpecker, hairy woodpecker, flicker, bluebird, screech owl, and wood duck) including length, width, depth, entrance diameter, and height above the ground. Pointers for construction, materials, and…
Fujita, Misao; Yashiro, Yoshimi; Suzuki, Mika
Sparrow highlights three potential applications of in vitro eugenics, that is, (a) research into the heredity of genetic disorders, (b) production of cell lines with specific genotypes, and (c) breeding better babies, and points to the need for researchers to discuss in advance the potential ethical problems that may emerge if the realization of this technology occurs in the near future. In this commentary, we pose a question for the sake of discussion. Is it, in fact, appropriate to label all three applications raised by Sparrow as eugenics? By doing so, an unnecessary level of concern might be borne among the public, and as a result, the sound development of this specialized technology would be affected. If the label of eugenics is to be applied to all three of these applications, then Sparrow must justify how he perceives (a) and (b) as not inherently different from (c).
Grant, T.A.; Madden, E.M.; Shaffer, T.L.; Pietz, P.J.; Berkey, G.B.; Kadrmas, N.J.
The quantity and quality of northern mixed-grass prairie continues to decline because of conversion to agriculture, invasion of woody and exotic plants, and disruption of important ecological processes that shape grasslands. Declines in grassland bird populations in North Dakota, USA, have coincided with these largely anthropogenic alterations to prairie habitat. In grasslands of north-central and northwestern North Dakota, woody plants have increased due primarily to fire suppression, extirpation of bison (Bos bison), and widescale planting of tree shelter belts. In northern grasslands, effects of woody vegetation on survival of grassland birds are poorly understood, and conclusions are based mainly on studies conducted outside the region. We examined nest survival of clay-colored sparrows (Spizella pallida) and vesper sparrows (Pooecetes gramineus) relative to the distance nests were located from aspen (Populus tremuloides,) woodland edges and relative to other habitat features near the nest. Clay-colored and vesper sparrow nest survival was higher for nests located near woodland edges, nests with greater cover of Kentucky bluegrass (Poa pratensis), and nests more concealed by vegetation. Vesper sparrow nest survival increased as the percent cover of tall shrubs near the nest increased. Based on video-camera data, the 13-lined ground squirrel (Spermophilus tridecemlineatus,) was the most common predator of sparrow eggs and young. Thirteen-lined ground squirrels were more common far from woodland edges than near, and this pattern may, in part, explain clay-colored and vesper sparrow nest survival in relation to woodland edges. In contrast to our results, studies conducted in other grassland systems generally report lower nest survival for grassland birds nesting near trees and shrubs. This disparity in results demonstrates the need to identify specific nest predators and their distributions with respect to important habitat features because these data can be
Gabrey, S.W.; Afton, A.D.
Louisiana Seaside Sparrows (Ammodramus maritimus fisheri) breed and winter exclusively in brackish and saline marshes along the northern Gulf of Mexico. Many Gulf Coast marshes, particularly in the Chenier Plain of southwestern Louisiana and southeastern Texas, are burned intentionally in fall or winter as part of waterfowl management programs. Fire reportedly has negatively affected two Seaside Sparrow subspecies (A. m. nigrescens and A. m. mirabilis) in Florida, but there is no published information regarding effects of fire on A. m. fisheri. We compared abundance of territorial male Louisiana Seaside Sparrows, number of nesting activity indicators, and vegetation structure in paired burned and unburned plots in Chenier Plain marshes in southwestern Louisiana during the 1996 breeding season (April-July) before experimental winter burns (January 1997) and again during two breeding seasons post-burn (1997-1998). We found that abundance of male sparrows decreased in burned plots during the first breeding season post-burn, but was higher than that of unburned plots during the second breeding season post-burn. Indicators of nesting activity showed a similar but non-significant pattern in response to burning. Sparrow abundance and nesting activity seemingly are linked to dead vegetation cover, which was lower in burned plots during the first breeding season post-burn, but did not differ from that in unburned plots during the second breeding season post-burn. We recommend that marsh management plans in the Gulf Coast Chenier Plain integrate waterfowl and Seaside Sparrow management by maintaining a mosaic of burned and unburned marshes and allowing vegetation to recover for at least two growing seasons before reburning a marsh.
Racino, Julie Ann; And Others
The paper describes adult homes and room and board homes serving persons with disabilities in Onondaga County, New York. Visits were made to eight adult homes and five room and board homes. Briefly considered are ownership and licensing regulations, referrals, and admission criteria. Observations at the homes are offered. Concerns are raised about…
Davis, Jamie K.; Lowman, Josh J.; Thomas, Pamela J.; ten Hallers, Boudewijn F. H.; Koriabine, Maxim; Huynh, Lynn Y.; Maney, Donna L.; de Jong, Pieter J.; Martin, Christa L.; Thomas, James W.
Bitter taste perception likely evolved as a protective mechanism against the ingestion of harmful compounds in food. The evolution of the taste receptor type 2 (TAS2R) gene family, which encodes the chemoreceptors that are directly responsible for the detection of bitter compounds, has therefore been of considerable interest. Though TAS2R repertoires have been characterized for a number of species, to date the complement of TAS2Rs from just one bird, the chicken, which had a notably small number of TAS2Rs, has been established. Here, we used targeted mapping and genomic sequencing in the white-throated sparrow (Zonotrichia albicollis) and sample sequencing in other closely related birds to reconstruct the history of a TAS2R gene cluster physically linked to the break points of an evolutionary chromosomal rearrangement. In the white-throated sparrow, this TAS2R cluster encodes up to 18 functional bitter taste receptors and likely underwent a large expansion that predates and/or coincides with the radiation of the Emberizinae subfamily into the New World. In addition to signatures of gene birth-and-death evolution within this cluster, estimates of Ka/Ks for the songbird TAS2Rs were similar to those previously observed in mammals, including humans. Finally, comparison of the complete genomic sequence of the cluster from two common haplotypes in the white-throated sparrow revealed a number of nonsynonymous variants and differences in functional gene content within this species. These results suggest that interspecies and intraspecies genetic variability does exist in avian TAS2Rs and that these differences could contribute to variation in bitter taste perception in birds. PMID:20624740
Althoff, D.P.; Gipson, P.S.; Pontius, J.S.; Japuntich, R.D.
We compared an index of reproductive success based on breeding behavior to actual nest fates of grasshopper sparrows (Ammodramus savannarum) and eastern meadowlarks (Sturnella magna) on 12 plots (4-ha). Concordance of results between the two methods was 58% for grasshopper sparrows and 42% for eastern meadowlarks on a plot-by-plot basis. The indirect method yielded higher estimates of reproductive activity than nest monitoring for the balance of the plots,. There was little evidence that brown-headed cowbird (Molothrus ater) parasitism influenced the estimates of reproductive success using the indirect method. We concluded that nests and about-to-fledge nestlings were missed during searches on some plots. It may be appropriate to use an indirect method to more efficiently survey territories and/or plots for species with hard-to-find nests or when monitoring large areas. Use of a reproductive index may be appropriate and more time-efficient than nest searching and monitoring for comparing management effects such as burning, grazing, haying, military training, and other localized disturbances that are likely to affect reproductive success of grasshopper sparrows and eastern meadowlarks. However, nest monitoring may be necessary for more precise estimates of productivity necessary for long-term monitoring. Nest monitoring results are also likely to allow for direct comparisons to results from other studies because the index method requires intimate knowledge of the species being evaluated - a factor that could lead to reduced precision because the experience level of technicians relying only on behavioral cues from study-to-study is likely to vary considerably.
GWS takes plans for a new home and subjects them to intensive computerized analysis that does 10,000 calculations relative to expected heat loss and heat gain, then provides specifications designed specifically for each structure as to heating, cooling, ventilation and insulation. As construction progresses, GWS inspects the work of the electrical, plumbing and insulation contractors and installs its own Smart House Radiant Barrier. On completion of the home, GWS technicians use a machine that creates a vacuum in the house and enables computer calculation of the air exchanged, a measure of energy efficiency. Key factor is the radiant barrier, borrowed from the Apollo program. This is an adaptation of a highly effective aluminized heat shield as a radiation barrier holding in or keeping out heat, cold air and water vapor.
Hovick, Torre J.; Miller, James R.; Koford, Rolf R.; Engle, David M.; Debinski, Diane M.
More accurate estimates of survival after nestlings fledge are needed for population models to be parameterized and population dynamics to be understood during this vulnerable life stage. The period after fledging is the time when chicks learn to fly, forage, and hide from predators. We monitored postfledging survival, causespecific mortality, and movements of Grasshopper Sparrows (Ammodramus savannarum) in grassland managed with fire and grazing. In 2009, we attached radio transmitters to 50 nestlings from 50 different broods and modeled their survival in response to climatic, biological, and ecological variables. There was no effect of treatment on survival. The factor most influencing postfledging survival was age; no other variable was significant. The majority of chicks (74%) died within 3 days of radio-transmitter attachment. We attributed most mortality to mesopredators (48%) and exposure (28%). Fledglings' movements increased rapidly for the first 4 days after they left the nest and were relatively stable for the remaining 10 days we tracked them. On average, fledglings took flight for the first time 4 days after fledging and flew ≥10 m 9 days after fledging. Our data show that the Grasshopper Sparrow's survival rates may be less than most models relying on nest-success estimates predict, and we emphasize the importance of incorporating estimates of survival during the postfledging period in demographic models.
Hammouda, A; Lecollinet, S; Hamza, F; Nasri, I; Neb, A; Selmi, S
During the last few years, several cases of West Nile virus (WNV) infection in humans have been reported in Tunisia. However, detailed information on WNV infection in wild birds, the primary amplifying host of WNV, are lacking. In this work, we investigated the exposure of wild sparrows (hybrid Passer domesticus × hispaniolensis) living in two oases in southern Tunisia (Gabès and Kébili oases) to WNV, through the detection of WNV-specific antibodies by using ELISA and microneutralization tests. In total, 208 birds were sampled (54 from Kébili, 154 from Gabès). Anti-WNV antibodies were detected in two birds, corresponding to an overall seroprevalence of 1%. There was no significant difference between the two sampled populations [1·85% (1/54) in Kébili, 0·65% (1/154) in Gabès]. These data provide indirect evidence of the exposure of resident sparrows in southern Tunisia to WNV.
Schwarz, Gregory E.
This report describes the results of a preliminary Spatially Referenced Regression on Watershed attributes (SPARROW) model of suspended sediment for the conterminous United States. The analysis is based on flux estimates compiled from more than 1,800 long-term monitoring stations operated by the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) during the period 1975-2007. The SPARROW model is structured on the Reach File 1 (RF1) stream network, consisting of approximately 62,000 reach segments. The reach network has been modified to include more than 4,000 reservoirs, an important landscape feature affecting the delivery of suspended sediment. The model identifies six sources of sediment, including the stream channel and five classes of land use: urban, forested, Federal nonforested, agricultural and other, and noninundated land. The delivery of sediment from landform sources to RF1 streams is mediated by soil permeability, erodibility, slope, and rainfall; streamflow is found to affect the amount of sediment mobilized from the stream channel. The results show agricultural land and the stream channel to be major sources of sediment flux. Per unit area, Federal nonforested and urban lands are the largest landform sediment sources. Reservoirs are identified as major sites for sediment attenuation. This report includes a description for how the model results can be used to assess changes in instream sediment flux and concentration resulting from proposed changes in the regulation of sediment discharge from construction sites.
Ator, Scott; Garcia, Ana Maria.
Understanding spatial variability in contaminant fate and transport is critical to efficient regional water-quality restoration. An approach to capitalize on previously calibrated spatially referenced regression (SPARROW) models to improve the understanding of contaminant fate and transport was developed and applied to the case of nitrogen in the 166,000 km2 Chesapeake Bay watershed. A continuous function of four hydrogeologic, soil, and other landscape properties significant (α = 0.10) to nitrogen transport from uplands to streams was evaluated and compared among each of the more than 80,000 individual catchments (mean area, 2.1 km2) in the watershed. Budgets (including inputs, losses or net change in storage in uplands and stream corridors, and delivery to tidal waters) were also estimated for nitrogen applied to these catchments from selected upland sources. Most (81%) of such inputs are removed, retained, or otherwise processed in uplands rather than transported to surface waters. Combining SPARROW results with previous budget estimates suggests 55% of this processing is attributable to denitrification, 23% to crop or timber harvest, and 6% to volatilization. Remaining upland inputs represent a net annual increase in landscape storage in soils or biomass exceeding 10 kg per hectare in some areas. Such insights are important for planning watershed restoration and for improving future watershed models.
Hosts and parasites interact on both evolutionary and ecological timescales. The outcome of these interactions, specifically whether hosts are more resistant to their local parasites (sympatric) than to parasites from another location (allopatric), is likely to affect the spread of infectious disease and the fitness consequences of host dispersal. We conducted a cross-infection experiment to determine whether song sparrows (Melospiza melodia) have an advantage in dealing with sympatric parasites. We captured birds from two breeding sites 437 km apart, and inoculated them with avian malaria (Plasmodium spp.) cultured either from their capture site or from the other site. Infection risk was lower for birds exposed to sympatric than to allopatric Plasmodium lineages, suggesting that song sparrows may have a home-field advantage in defending against local parasite strains. This pattern was more pronounced at one capture site than at the other, consistent with mosaic models of host–parasite interactions. Home-field advantage may arise from evolutionary processes, whereby host populations become adapted to their local parasites, and/or from ecological interactions, whereby host individuals develop resistance to the local parasites through previous immune exposure. Our findings suggest that greater susceptibility to novel parasites may represent a fitness consequence of natal dispersal. PMID:27853596
Arnberg, Nina N; Shizuka, Daizaburo; Chaine, Alexis S; Lyon, Bruce E
Stable social organization in a wide variety of organisms has been linked to kinship, which can minimize conflict due to the indirect fitness benefits from cooperating with relatives. In birds, kin selection has been mostly studied in the context of reproduction or in species that are social year round. Many birds however are migratory, and the role of kinship in the winter societies of these species is virtually unexplored. In a previous study, we discovered striking social complexity and stability in a wintering population of migratory golden-crowned sparrows (Zonotrichia atricapilla) - individuals repeatedly form close associations with the same social partners, including across multiple winters. Here, we test the possibility that kinship might be involved in these close and stable social affiliations. We examine the relationship between kinship and social structure for two of the consecutive wintering seasons from the previous study. We found no evidence that social structure was influenced by kinship. Relatedness between most pairs of individuals was at most that of first cousins (and mostly far lower). Genetic networks based on relatedness do not correspond to the social networks, and Mantel tests revealed no relationship between kinship and pairwise interaction frequency. Kinship also failed to predict social structure in more fine-grained analyses, including analyses of each sex separately (in the event that sex-biased migration might limit kin selection to one sex), and separate analyses for each social community. The complex winter societies of golden-crowned sparrows appear to be based on cooperative benefits unrelated to kin selection.
Maldonado, Karin; van Dongen, Wouter F D; Vásquez, Rodrigo A; Sabat, Pablo
Increasing research has attempted to clarify the links between animal personality and physiology. However, the mechanisms driving this association remain largely unknown, and knowledge of how ecological factors may affect its direction and strength is scant. In this study, we quantified variation in the association between exploratory behavior, basal metabolic rate (BMR), and total evaporative water loss (TEWL) in rufous-collared sparrows (Zonotrichia capensis) inhabiting desert, Mediterranean, and cold-temperate climates. We found that the exploratory behavior score was highest in birds from the cold-temperate site, which was characterized by a moderate level of ecological variability (seasonality). Moreover, the association between exploratory behavior and physiological variables differed among localities. Only birds from the Mediterranean site showed a positive correlation between exploratory behavior and BMR. We found no association between exploration and TEWL at any study site. Our findings suggest that differences in the ecological conditions experienced by each sparrow population result in a particular combination of behavioral and physiological traits. An understanding of this intraspecific variation along ecological gradients provides unique insights into how specific ecological conditions affect the coupling of behavioral and physiological traits and the mechanisms underlying that relationship.
Stober, J.M.; Krementz, D.G.
Using radiotelemetry, we studied variation in home-range size of the Bachman's Sparrow (Aimophila aestivalis) at the Savannah River Site (SRS), South Carolina, during the 1995 breeding season. At SRS, sparrows occurred primarily in two habitats: mature pine habitats managed for Red-cockaded Woodpecker (Picoides borealis) and pine plantations 1 to 6 years of age. The mean 95% minimum convex polygon home-range size for males and females combined (n = 14) was 2.95 ha + 0.57 SE, across all habitats. Mean homerange size for males in mature pine stands (4.79 ha + 0.27, n = 4) was significantly larger than that in 4-year-old (3.00 ha + 0.31, n = 3) and 2-year-old stands (1.46 ha + 0.31, it = 3). Home-range sizes of paired males and females (it = 4 pairs) were similar within habitat type; mean distances between consecutive locations differed by habitat type and sex. We hypothesize that a gradient in food resources drives home-range dynamics.
The Coastal Plain Swamp Sparrow (Melospiza georgiana nigrescens, CPSS) breeds in the coastal brackish marshes of the North American Mid-Atlantic States. During the non-breeding season, coastal brackish marshes are occupied by both this subspecies and two far more widespread inte...
Winneke, Gerhard; Walkowiak, Jens; Kramer, Ursula
This paper comments on a critical review of cohort studies on PCB-related neurodevelopmental deficit in young children by D.V. Cicchetti, A.S. Kaufman, and S.S. Sparrow (CKS). Major points of criticism of CKS, namely alleged violation of statistical principles, presumed lack of clinical significance of findings, and alleged insufficient control of…
Scollon, Edward J; Carr, James A; Rintoul, David A; McMurry, Scott T; Cobb, George P
This study evaluated the interactions of flight, fasting, and 1,1,1-trichloro-bis(4-chlorophenyl)ethane (p,p'-DDT) loading on residue metabolism and distribution in recently exposed white-crowned sparrows (Zonotrichia leucophrys). Female sparrows were dosed with 5 mg p,p'-DDT per kg body weight over 3 d. Following 1 d of recovery, sparrows were flown in a wind tunnel for up to 140 min, in 15-min blocks. Food was withheld from the start of the flight period until birds were euthanized. DDT, 1,1-dichloro-2,2-bis(4 chlorophenyl)ethane (DDD), and 1,1-dichloro-2,2-bis(4-chlorophenyl)ethylene (DDE) were present in all tissues examined. 1-Chloro-2,2-bis(4-chlorophenyl)ethene (DDµ), 1,1-bis(4-chlorophenyl)ethane (p,p'-DDη), and 2,2-bis(4-chlorophenyl)ethanol (p,p'-DDOH) were not found. Fasting did not significantly affect the rate of residue increase over time in any of the tissues examined. When sparrows flew and fasted simultaneously, fasting seldom contributed to an increase in tissue residues. However, the length of time flown was significantly correlated with increasing toxicant concentrations in the brain, kidney, and liver, effectively demonstrating the potential for brief flights to enhance mobilization of DDT and its metabolites. Dose, flight, and fasting also increased residues in brain tissue. These contaminant redistributions may have important ramifications on the stresses experienced by migratory birds.
In China and Mexico, engineered recombinant Newcastle disease virus (rNDV) strains are used as live vaccines for the control of Newcastle disease and as vectors to express the avian influenza virus hemagglutinin (HA) gene to control avian influenza in poultry. In this study, non-target species wer...
McNeill, Lorna H; Coeling, Molly; Puleo, Elaine; Suarez, Elizabeth Gonzalez; Bennett, Gary G; Emmons, Karen M
Background This paper presents the study design, intervention components, and baseline data from Open Doors to Health, a study designed to address social contextual factors in colorectal cancer (CRC) prevention for low-income, racial/ethnic minority populations. Methods A cluster randomized design with 12 housing sites as the primary sampling units was used: 6 sites were assigned to a "Peer-led plus Screening Access" (PL) condition, and 6 were assigned to "Screening Access only" (SCR) condition. Study-related outcomes were CRC screening, physical activity (measured as mean steps/day), and multivitamin use. Results At baseline (unweighted sample size = 1554), two-thirds self-reported that they were current with screening recommendations for CRC (corrected for medical records validation, prevalence was 52%), with half having received a colonoscopy (54%); 96% had health insurance. Mean steps per day was 5648 (se mean = 224), and on average 28% of the sample reported regular multivitamin use. Residents reported high levels of social support [mean = 4.40 (se = .03)] and moderately extensive social networks [mean = 2.66 (se = .02)]. Conclusion Few studies have conducted community-based studies in public housing communities; these data suggest areas for improvement and future opportunities for intervention development and dissemination. Findings from the randomized trial will determine the effectiveness of the intervention on our health-related outcomes as well as inform future avenues of research. PMID:19765309
Prior to acquisition of the first host blood meal, the anautogenous mosquito Culex quinquefasciatus requires a period of time in order to prepare for the blood feeding and, later, vitellogenesis. In the current study, we conducted whole transcriptome analyses of adult female Culex mosquitoes to iden...
Kumar, Maya M; Nisenbaum, Rosane; Barozzino, Tony; Sgro, Michael; Bonifacio, Herbert J; Maguire, Jonathon L
Street-involved youth (SIY) carry a disproportionate burden of sexually transmitted diseases (STD). Studies among adults suggest that improving housing stability may be an effective primary prevention strategy for improving sexual health. Housing options available to SIY offer varying degrees of stability and adult supervision. This study investigated whether housing options offering more stability and adult supervision are associated with fewer STD and related risk behaviors among SIY. A cross-sectional study was performed using public health survey and laboratory data collected from Toronto SIY in 2010. Three exposure categories were defined a priori based on housing situation: (1) stable and supervised housing, (2) stable and unsupervised housing, and (3) unstable and unsupervised housing. Multivariate logistic regression was used to test the association between housing category and current or recent STD. Secondary analyses were performed using the following secondary outcomes: blood-borne infection, recent binge-drinking, and recent high-risk sexual behavior. The final analysis included 184 SIY. Of these, 28.8 % had a current or recent STD. Housing situation was stable and supervised for 12.5 %, stable and unsupervised for 46.2 %, and unstable and unsupervised for 41.3 %. Compared to stable and supervised housing, there was no significant association between current or recent STD among stable and unsupervised housing or unstable and unsupervised housing. There was no significant association between housing category and risk of blood-borne infection, binge-drinking, or high-risk sexual behavior. Although we did not demonstrate a significant association between stable and supervised housing and lower STD risk, our incorporation of both housing stability and adult supervision into a priori defined exposure groups may inform future studies of housing-related prevention strategies among SIY. Multi-modal interventions beyond housing alone may also be required to
Reid, William R.; Zhang, Lee; Liu, Nannan
Prior to acquisition of the first host blood meal, the anautogenous mosquito Culex quinquefasciatus requires a period of time in order to prepare for the blood feeding and, later, vitellogenesis. In the current study, we conducted whole transcriptome analyses of adult female Culex mosquitoes to identify genes that may be necessary for both taking of the blood meal, and processing of the blood meal in adult female mosquitoes Cx. quinquefasciatus. We examined temporal expression of genes for the periods of post eclosion and prior to the female freely taking a blood meal. We further evaluated the temporal expression of certain genes for the periods after the taking of a blood meal to identify genes that may be necessary for both the taking of the blood meal, and the processing of the blood meal. We found that adult females required a minimum of 48 h post-eclosion before they freely took their first blood meal. We hypothesized that gene expression signatures were altered in the mosquitoes before blood feeding in preparation for the acquisition of the blood meal through changes in multiple gene expression. To identify the genes involved in the acquisition of blood feeding, we quantified the gene expression levels of adult female Cx. quinquefasciatus using RNA Seq throughout a pre-blooding period from 2 to 72 h post eclosion at 12 h intervals. A total of 325 genes were determined to be differentially-expressed throughout the pre-blooding period, with the majority of differentially-expressed genes occurring between the 2 h and 12 h post-eclosion time points. Among the up-regulated genes were salivary proteins, cytochrome P450s, odorant-binding proteins, and proteases, while the majority of the down-regulated genes were hypothetical or cuticular genes. In addition, Trypsin was found to be up-regulated immediately following blood feeding, while trypsin and chymotrypsin were up-regulated at 48h and 60h post blood-feeding, respectively, suggesting that these proteases are
Clough, Amber; Draughon, Jessica E; Njie-Carr, Veronica; Rollins, Chiquita; Glass, Nancy
Research indicates that the need for safe housing and the economic resources to maintain safe housing are two of the most pressing concerns among abused women who are planning to or have recently left abusers. Intimate partner violence (IPV) is frequently an immediate cause or precursor to homelessness and housing instability. The aim of the study is to explore abused women's experiences accessing affordable, safe, and stable housing. To achieve the aim, adult female IPV survivors answered questions about: 1) steps that were taken to secure housing; 2) safety issues after leaving the abuser; 3) barriers to obtaining housing; and 4) responses from housing and domestic violence advocacy systems related to survivors' housing needs. Four major themes emerged from the in-depth interviews: 1) stable, affordable housing is critical in increasing safety; 2) survivors face multiple systemic or individual barriers; 3) survivors develop and utilize an array of creative and resourceful strategies; and 4) survivors identified a variety of supportive services tailored to address their needs. The findings inform practice, policy and research for both the housing and domestic violence service systems with an emphasis on collaboration to meet the complex safety and stable housing needs of survivors and their families, particularly following the impact on housing of the 2008 U.S. economic crisis and subsequent recession.
Buainain, Nelson; Brito, Guilherme Renzo Rocha; Firme, Daniel Honorato; Figueira, Daniel Monteiro; Raposo, Marcos A; De Assis, Claydson Pinto
The Saffron-billed Sparrow (Arremon flavirostris) complex occurs in the undergrowth of deciduous woodlands and forests from the Andes of Bolivia and northern Argentina to Paraguay and southern, mid-western and interior eastern Brazil. Currently four subspecies are recognized: A. f. flavirostris, A. f. polionotus, A. f. devillii and A. f. dorbignii. We review the taxonomy of this complex by analyzing coloration and morphometrics of a series of 234 skins, and by comparing 101 sound recordings. Our results suggest that under both the Phylogenetic and Biological Species Concept, three species should be recognized in this complex: A. flavirostris, A. polionotus and A. dorbignii. On the other hand, A. devillii should be considered a junior synonym of A. polionotus since these two have no constant differences in morphology and vocalization. These species are diagnosable by their coloration characters, but not by morphometrics. Vocalizations are useful in diagnosing A. flavirostris from A. dorbignii, but do not diagnose A. polionotus from the others. We show that part of the previous taxonomic confusion can be attributed to variation in back color of adult and immature A. polionotus. Finally, we comment on the recently located holotype of A. flavirostris, which was believed to be lost, and its type locality.
Shizuka, Daizaburo; Chaine, Alexis S; Anderson, Jennifer; Johnson, Oscar; Laursen, Inger Marie; Lyon, Bruce E
Migratory birds often form flocks on their wintering grounds, but important details of social structure such as the patterns of association between individuals are virtually unknown. We analysed networks of co-membership in short-term flocks for wintering golden-crowned sparrows (Zonotrichia atricapilla) across three years and discovered social complexity unsuspected for migratory songbirds. The population was consistently clustered into distinct social communities within a relatively small area (~ 7 ha). Birds returned to the same community across years, with mortality and recruitment leading to some degree of turnover in membership. These spatiotemporal patterns were explained by the combination of space use and social preference - birds that flocked together in one year flocked together again in the subsequent year more often than were expected based on degrees of home range overlap. Our results suggest that a surprising level of social fidelity across years leads to repeatable patterns of social network structure in migratory populations.
I used the meme concept to investigate patterns of cultural variation among the songs of eight, geographically distinct populations of savannah sparrows. Memes composed of only one syllable were geographically widespread and randomly distributed among populations, but memes of two-, three- and four-syllables became progressively more restricted in their geographical distribution. Thus, the populations were memetically more similar with respect to one-syllable memes and more divergent with respect to larger memes. These results suggest that differences in memetic mutation rates and susceptibility to loss by memetic drift could be sufficient to create the observed pattern of greater divergence among populations for large memes. Copyright 1998 The Association for the Study of Animal Behaviour.
Brakebill, J.W.; Terziotti, S.E.
A digital hydrologic network was developed to support SPAtially Referenced Regression on Watershed attributes (SPARROW) models within selected regions of the United States. These regions correspond with the U.S. Geological Survey's National Water Quality Assessment (NAWQA) Program Major River Basin (MRB) study units 2, 3, 4, 5, and 7 (Preston and others, 2009). MRB2, covers the South Atlantic-Gulf and Tennessee River basins. MRB3, covers the Great Lakes, Ohio, Upper Mississippi, and Souris-Red-Rainy River basins. MRB4, covers the Missouri River basins. MRB5, covers the Lower Mississippi, Arkansas-White-Red, and Texas-Gulf River basins. MRB7, covers the Pacific Northwest River basins. The digital hydrologic network described here represents surface-water pathways (MRB_E2RF1) and associated catchments (MRB_E2RF1WS). It serves as the fundamental framework to spatially reference and summarize explanatory information supporting nutrient SPARROW models (Brakebill and others, 2011; Wieczorek and LaMotte, 2011). The principal geospatial dataset used to support this regional effort was based on an enhanced version of a 1:500,000 scale digital stream-reach network (ERF1_2) (Nolan et al., 2002). Enhancements included associating over 3,500 water-quality monitoring sites to the reach network, improving physical locations of stream reaches at or near monitoring locations, and generating drainage catchments based on 100m elevation data. A unique number (MRB_ID) identifies each reach as a single unit. This unique number is also shared by the catchment area drained by the reach, thus spatially linking the hydrologically connected streams and the respective drainage area characteristics. In addition, other relevant physical, environmental, and monitoring information can be associated to the common network and accessed using the unique identification number.
Brakebill, J.W.; Terziotti, S.E.
A digital hydrologic network was developed to support SPAtially Referenced Regression on Watershed attributes (SPARROW) models within selected regions of the United States. These regions correspond with the U.S. Geological Survey's National Water Quality Assessment (NAWQA) Program Major River Basin (MRB) study units 2, 3, 4, 5, and 7 (Preston and others, 2009). MRB2, covers the South Atlantic-Gulf and Tennessee River basins. MRB3, covers the Great Lakes, Ohio, Upper Mississippi, and Souris-Red-Rainy River basins. MRB4, covers the Missouri River basins. MRB5, covers the Lower Mississippi, Arkansas-White-Red, and Texas-Gulf River basins. MRB7, covers the Pacific Northwest River basins. The digital hydrologic network described here represents surface-water pathways (MRB_E2RF1) and associated catchments (MRB_E2RF1WS). It serves as the fundamental framework to spatially reference and summarize explanatory information supporting nutrient SPARROW models (Brakebill and others, 2011; Wieczorek and LaMotte, 2011). The principal geospatial dataset used to support this regional effort was based on an enhanced version of a 1:500,000 scale digital stream-reach network (ERF1_2) (Nolan et al., 2002). Enhancements included associating over 3,500 water-quality monitoring sites to the reach network, improving physical locations of stream reaches at or near monitoring locations, and generating drainage catchments based on 100m elevation data. A unique number (MRB_ID) identifies each reach as a single unit. This unique number is also shared by the catchment area drained by the reach, thus spatially linking the hydrologically connected streams and the respective drainage area characteristics. In addition, other relevant physical, environmental, and monitoring information can be associated to the common network and accessed using the unique identification number.
Zinzow-Kramer, W M; Horton, B M; McKee, C D; Michaud, J M; Tharp, G K; Thomas, J W; Tuttle, E M; Yi, S; Maney, D L
The genome of the white-throated sparrow (Zonotrichia albicollis) contains an inversion polymorphism on chromosome 2 that is linked to predictable variation in a suite of phenotypic traits including plumage color, aggression and parental behavior. Differences in gene expression between the two color morphs, which represent the two common inversion genotypes (ZAL2/ZAL2 and ZAL2/ZAL2(m) ), may therefore advance our understanding of the molecular underpinnings of these phenotypes. To identify genes that are differentially expressed between the two morphs and correlated with behavior, we quantified gene expression and terrirorial aggression, including song, in a population of free-living white-throated sparrows. We analyzed gene expression in two brain regions, the medial amygdala (MeA) and hypothalamus. Both regions are part of a 'social behavior network', which is rich in steroid hormone receptors and previously linked with territorial behavior. Using weighted gene co-expression network analyses, we identified modules of genes that were correlated with both morph and singing behavior. The majority of these genes were located within the inversion, showing the profound effect of the inversion on the expression of genes captured by the rearrangement. These modules were enriched with genes related to retinoic acid signaling and basic cellular functioning. In the MeA, the most prominent pathways were those related to steroid hormone receptor activity. Within these pathways, the only gene encoding such a receptor was ESR1 (estrogen receptor 1), a gene previously shown to predict song rate in this species. The set of candidate genes we identified may mediate the effects of a chromosomal inversion on territorial behavior.
Zinzow-Kramer, Wendy M.; Horton, Brent M.; McKee, Clifton D.; Michaud, Justin M.; Tharp, Gregory K.; Thomas, James W.; Tuttle, Elaina M.; Yi, Soojin; Maney, Donna L.
The genome of the white-throated sparrow (Zonotrichia albicollis) contains an inversion polymorphism on chromosome 2 that is linked to predictable variation in a suite of phenotypic traits including plumage color, aggression, and parental behavior. Differences in gene expression between the two color morphs, which represent the two common inversion genotypes (ZAL2/ZAL2 and ZAL2/ZAL2m), are therefore of potential interest toward understanding the molecular underpinnings of these phenotypes. To identify genes that are differentially expressed between the two morphs and correlated with behavior, we quantified both behavior and brain gene expression in a population of free-living white-throated sparrows. We quantified behavioral responses to simulated territorial intrusions (STIs) early during the breeding season. In the same birds, we then performed a transcriptome-wide analysis of gene expression in two regions, the medial amygdala and hypothalamus. Both regions are part of a ‘social behavior network’, which is rich in steroid hormone receptors and previously linked with territorial behavior. Using network analyses, we identified modules of genes that were correlated with both morph and STI-induced singing behavior. The majority of these genes were located within the inversion, demonstrating the profound effect the inversion has on the expression of genes captured by the rearrangement. Gene pathway analyses revealed that in the medial amygdala, the most prominent pathways were those related to steroid hormone receptor activity. Within these pathways, the only gene encoding such a receptor was ESR1 (estrogen receptor alpha). Our results thus suggest that ESR1 and related genes are important for behavioral differences between the morphs. PMID:26463687
Graham, Jim; Jarnevich, Catherine; Young, Nick; Newman, Greg; Stohlgren, Thomas
Habitat suitability models have been used to predict the present and future potential distribution of a variety of species. Eurasian tree sparrows Passer montanus, native to Eurasia, have established populations in other parts of the world. In North America, their current distribution is limited to a relatively small region around its original introduction to St. Louis, Missouri. We combined data from the Global Biodiversity Information Facility with current and future climate data to create habitat suitability models using Maxent for this species. Under projected climate change scenarios, our models show that the distribution and range of the Eurasian tree sparrow could increase as far as the Pacific Northwest and Newfoundland. This is potentially important information for prioritizing the management and control of this non-native species.
American Association of Retired Persons, Washington, DC.
Aging and housing professionals must reexamine housing policy and practices, and reshape housing opportunities for older persons without undermining their preferences and values. A nationwide survey of 1,500 adults age 60 and older was conducted to determine their housing needs, concerns, and preferences. The results revealed that 70% of…
Ruth, Janet M.
The Arizona Grasshopper Sparrow (Ammodramus savannarum ammolegus) breeds in desert grasslands of southeastern Arizona and southwestern New Mexico in the US, and in adjacent parts of northern Sonora and Chihuahua, Mexico. Roads that were surveyed in 1982 and 1987 in Arizona and New Mexico were relocated and roadside survey protocols were repeated in 2004 and 2005 to identify changes in distribution or abundance of the subspecies during the subsequent 17 yr. The Sonoita and San Rafael valleys in Arizona and the Animas Valley in New Mexico remain as primary population centers, supporting the highest mean numbers of singing males per stop, as well as the largest populations of Arizona Grasshopper Sparrows in the US. Mean number of singing males per stop was highest in the San Rafael Valley. Mean number of singing males per survey stop showed an increasing pattern from 1982–1987 and a subsequent decline to the present (2004–2005). Present bird densities are intermediate in value between 1982 and 1987 values. Small populations remain in the Altar, San Pedro, Sulphur Springs, and San Bernardino valleys in Arizona. The valleys evaluated in this and historical surveys represent the areas in which almost all Arizona Grasshopper Sparrows breed in the US; if any additional areas exist, they support peripheral, small, or remnant populations. Although historic, current, and future land use, and current and future threats differ among valleys, the primary factors posing threats to the future of Arizona Grasshopper Sparrow populations appear to be loss and/or degradation of habitat due to exurban development, overgrazing, and the effects of long-term drought.
Benoy, Glenn A; Jenkinson, R. Wayne; Robertson, Dale; Saad, David A.
Excessive phosphorus (TP) and nitrogen (TN) inputs from the Red–Assiniboine River Basin (RARB) have been linked to eutrophication of Lake Winnipeg; therefore, it is important for the management of water resources to understand where and from what sources these nutrients originate. The RARB straddles the Canada–United States border and includes portions of two provinces and three states. This study represents the first binationally focused application of SPAtially Referenced Regressions on Watershed attributes (SPARROW) models to estimate loads and sources of TP and TN by jurisdiction and basin at multiple spatial scales. Major hurdles overcome to develop these models included: (1) harmonization of geospatial data sets, particularly construction of a contiguous stream network; and (2) use of novel calibration steps to accommodate limitations in spatial variability across the model extent and in the number of calibration sites. Using nutrient inputs for a 2002 base year, a RARB TP SPARROW model was calibrated that included inputs from agriculture, forests and wetlands, wastewater treatment plants (WWTPs) and stream channels, and a TN model was calibrated that included inputs from agriculture, WWTPs and atmospheric deposition. At the RARB outlet, downstream from Winnipeg, Manitoba, the majority of the delivered TP and TN came from the Red River Basin (90%), followed by the Upper Assiniboine River and Souris River basins. Agriculture was the single most important TP and TN source for each major basin, province and state. In general, stream channels (historically deposited nutrients and from bank erosion) were the second most important source of TP. Performance metrics for the RARB SPARROW model are similarly robust compared to other, larger US SPARROW models making it a potentially useful tool to address questions of where nutrients originate and their relative contributions to loads delivered to Lake Winnipeg.
Robertson, Dale M.; Saad, David A.; Schwarz, Gregory E.
Nitrogen (N) and phosphorus (P) loading from the Mississippi/Atchafalaya River Basin (MARB) has been linked to hypoxia in the Gulf of Mexico. With geospatial datasets for 2002, including inputs from wastewater treatment plants (WWTPs), and monitored loads throughout the MARB, SPAtially Referenced Regression On Watershed attributes (SPARROW) watershed models were constructed specifically for the MARB, which reduced simulation errors from previous models. Based on these models, N loads/yields were highest from the central part (centered over Iowa and Indiana) of the MARB (Corn Belt), and the highest P yields were scattered throughout the MARB. Spatial differences in yields from previous studies resulted from different descriptions of the dominant sources (N yields are highest with crop-oriented agriculture and P yields are highest with crop and animal agriculture and major WWTPs) and different descriptions of downstream transport. Delivered loads/yields from the MARB SPARROW models are used to rank subbasins, states, and eight-digit Hydrologic Unit Code basins (HUC8s) by N and P contributions and then rankings are compared with those from other studies. Changes in delivered yields result in an average absolute change of 1.3 (N) and 1.9 (P) places in state ranking and 41 (N) and 69 (P) places in HUC8 ranking from those made with previous national-scale SPARROW models. This information may help managers decide where efforts could have the largest effects (highest ranked areas) and thus reduce hypoxia in the Gulf of Mexico.
Texas Tech Univ., Lubbock. Home Economics Curriculum Center.
This document contains teacher's materials for a six-unit secondary education vocational home economics course on housing, design, and furnishings. The units cover: (1) the societal aspects of housing (including the relationship between housing and the economy, population trends, and culture-related housing characteristics); (2) family housing…
This illustration shows an adult southern house mosquito. This mosquito feeds on blood and is the carrier of many diseases, such as encephalitis, West Nile, dengue fever, yellow fever, and others. ( ...
Norbäck, Dan; Lampa, Erik; Engvall, Karin
Risk factors for asthma, allergy and eczema were studied in a stratified random sample of adults in Stockholm. In 2005, 472 multifamily buildings (10,506 dwellings) were invited (one subject/dwelling) and 7,554 participated (73%). Associations were analyzed by multiple logistic regression, adjusting for gender, age, smoking, country of birth, income and years in the dwelling. In total, 11% had doctor's diagnosed asthma, 22% doctor's diagnosed allergy, 23% pollen allergy and 23% eczema. Doctor's diagnosed asthma was more common in dwellings with humid air (OR = 1.74) and mould odour (OR = 1.79). Doctor's diagnosed allergy was more common in buildings with supply exhaust air ventilation as compared to exhaust air only (OR = 1.45) and was associated with redecoration (OR = 1.48) and mould odour (OR = 2.35). Pollen allergy was less common in buildings using more energy for heating (OR = 0.75) and was associated with humid air (OR = 1.76) and mould odour (OR = 2.36). Eczema was more common in larger buildings (OR 1.07) and less common in buildings using more energy for heating (OR = 0.85) and was associated with water damage (OR = 1.47), humid air (OR = 1.73) and mould odour (OR = 2.01). Doctor's diagnosed allergy was less common in buildings with management accessibility both in the neighbourhood and in larger administrative divisions, as compared to management in the neighbourhood only (OR = 0.49; 95% CI 0.29–0.82). Pollen allergy was less common if the building maintenance was outsourced (OR = 0.67; 95% CI 0.51–0.88). Eczema was more common when management accessibility was only at the division level (OR = 1.49; 95% CI 1.06–2.11). In conclusions, asthma, allergy or eczema were more common in buildings using less energy for heating, in larger buildings and in dwellings with redecorations, mould odour, dampness and humid air. There is a need to reduce indoor chemical emissions and to control dampness
Norbäck, Dan; Lampa, Erik; Engvall, Karin
Risk factors for asthma, allergy and eczema were studied in a stratified random sample of adults in Stockholm. In 2005, 472 multifamily buildings (10,506 dwellings) were invited (one subject/dwelling) and 7,554 participated (73%). Associations were analyzed by multiple logistic regression, adjusting for gender, age, smoking, country of birth, income and years in the dwelling. In total, 11% had doctor's diagnosed asthma, 22% doctor's diagnosed allergy, 23% pollen allergy and 23% eczema. Doctor's diagnosed asthma was more common in dwellings with humid air (OR = 1.74) and mould odour (OR = 1.79). Doctor's diagnosed allergy was more common in buildings with supply exhaust air ventilation as compared to exhaust air only (OR = 1.45) and was associated with redecoration (OR = 1.48) and mould odour (OR = 2.35). Pollen allergy was less common in buildings using more energy for heating (OR = 0.75) and was associated with humid air (OR = 1.76) and mould odour (OR = 2.36). Eczema was more common in larger buildings (OR 1.07) and less common in buildings using more energy for heating (OR = 0.85) and was associated with water damage (OR = 1.47), humid air (OR = 1.73) and mould odour (OR = 2.01). Doctor's diagnosed allergy was less common in buildings with management accessibility both in the neighbourhood and in larger administrative divisions, as compared to management in the neighbourhood only (OR = 0.49; 95% CI 0.29-0.82). Pollen allergy was less common if the building maintenance was outsourced (OR = 0.67; 95% CI 0.51-0.88). Eczema was more common when management accessibility was only at the division level (OR = 1.49; 95% CI 1.06-2.11). In conclusions, asthma, allergy or eczema were more common in buildings using less energy for heating, in larger buildings and in dwellings with redecorations, mould odour, dampness and humid air. There is a need to reduce indoor chemical emissions and to control dampness. Energy saving may have consequences for allergy and eczema. More
... 24 Housing and Urban Development 4 2011-04-01 2011-04-01 false Shared housing: Housing quality standards. 982.618 Section 982.618 Housing and Urban Development REGULATIONS RELATING TO HOUSING AND URBAN DEVELOPMENT (CONTINUED) OFFICE OF ASSISTANT SECRETARY FOR PUBLIC AND INDIAN HOUSING, DEPARTMENT OF HOUSING...
... 24 Housing and Urban Development 4 2014-04-01 2014-04-01 false Shared housing: Housing quality standards. 982.618 Section 982.618 Housing and Urban Development REGULATIONS RELATING TO HOUSING AND URBAN DEVELOPMENT (CONTINUED) OFFICE OF ASSISTANT SECRETARY FOR PUBLIC AND INDIAN HOUSING, DEPARTMENT OF HOUSING...
... 24 Housing and Urban Development 4 2012-04-01 2012-04-01 false Shared housing: Housing quality standards. 982.618 Section 982.618 Housing and Urban Development REGULATIONS RELATING TO HOUSING AND URBAN DEVELOPMENT (CONTINUED) OFFICE OF ASSISTANT SECRETARY FOR PUBLIC AND INDIAN HOUSING, DEPARTMENT OF HOUSING...
... 24 Housing and Urban Development 4 2013-04-01 2013-04-01 false Shared housing: Housing quality standards. 982.618 Section 982.618 Housing and Urban Development REGULATIONS RELATING TO HOUSING AND URBAN DEVELOPMENT (CONTINUED) OFFICE OF ASSISTANT SECRETARY FOR PUBLIC AND INDIAN HOUSING, DEPARTMENT OF HOUSING...
Miller, Angela; Leighty, Katherine A; Bettinger, Tamara L
The systematic evaluation of changes in animal management practices is critical to ensuring the best possible welfare. Here, we examined the behavioral impacts of intermittently housing our six adult female tigers, who have been housed socially for much of their lives, individually overnight to allow for specialized care required by their advancing age. We looked for behavioral changes indicative of both positive and negative changes in welfare by monitoring time spent asleep, sleeping position, body position while awake, as well as pacing, door pounding, self-grooming, roaring, and chuffing while housed socially as compared to individually overnight. Housing condition did not affect time spent asleep, sleeping positions assumed or the more preferred body positions while awake. Further, pacing, door-pounding, and roaring were infrequent and not altered by housing condition. Self-grooming did increase when housed individually but no evidence of over-grooming was present and chuffing, a close proximity social vocalization, was more likely to occur when socially housed. Taken together, these findings support the notion that transitioning to individual housing as needed is a viable option for managing cats accustomed to being maintained in a social group.
Escallón, Camilo; Weinstein, Nicole M; Tallant, James A; Wojtenek, Winfried; Rodríguez-Saltos, Carlos A; Bonaccorso, Elisa; Moore, Ignacio T
Elevation has been proposed as a dominant ecological variable shaping life history traits and subsequently their underlying hormonal mechanisms. In an earlier meta-analysis of tropical birds, elevation was positively related to testosterone levels. Furthermore, parasitism by avian haemosporidians should vary with elevation as environmental conditions affect vector abundance, and while testosterone is needed for breeding, it is hypothesized to be immunosuppressive and thus could exacerbate haemosporidian infection. Our objective in this study was to examine the relationships between elevation, testosterone levels, and parasitism by avian haemosporidians. We surveyed breeding male rufous-collared sparrows (Zonotrichia capensis) across a wide elevational range along the equator. We measured baseline testosterone levels, haemosporidian infection at four elevations spanning the species' natural range in the Ecuadorian Andes (600, 1500, 2100, 3300 m). Testosterone levels from breeding males were not related to elevation, but there was high intrapopulation variability. Testosterone levels were not related to the probability of parasitism, but our results from one population suggested that the likelihood of being infected by haemosporidian parasites was greater when in breeding condition. In conclusion, even though there is variation in life history strategies among the studied populations, wider divergence in seasonality and life history traits would probably be needed to detect an effect of elevation on testosterone if one exists. Additionally, our results show that variation in testosterone is not related to infection risk of haemosporidians, thus other factors that take a toll on energetic resources, such as reproduction, should be looked at more closely.
Tibbetts, E A; Safran, R J
Understanding the evolution of phenotypic diversity, including the stunning array of avian plumage characters, is a central goal of evolutionary biology. Here, we applied a comparative analysis to test factors associated with the origin and maintenance of black chest and throat patches, which in some taxa are referred to as 'badges-of-status'. Specifically, we tested whether the evolution of black colour patches in Old and New World sparrows is consistent with a signalling function during the nonbreeding season or breeding season. We found no positive associations between patch evolution and polygyny or summer sociality. Instead, patch evolution is significantly associated with sociality during the nonbreeding season. Additionally, unlike typical plumage characteristics under sexual selection, these patches are visible throughout the nonbreeding season. Further, the pattern of patch dimorphism uncovered in this study does not match expectations for a trait that evolved in a reproductive context. In particular, patch dimorphism is not associated with polygyny or the presence of extra-pair mating although other types of plumage dimorphism are strongly associated with nonmonogamous mating systems. Overall, patterns of patch evolution suggest that they are more strongly associated with social competition during the nonbreeding season than sexual competition during the breeding season. These results clarify why some previous work has uncovered puzzling relationships between black plumage patches and reproductive behaviour. We discuss these findings in the context of signal theory and previous work on badges-of-status.
Robertson, Dale M.; Saad, David A.
Nutrient input to the Laurentian Great Lakes continues to cause problems with eutrophication. To reduce the extent and severity of these problems, target nutrient loads were established and Total Maximum Daily Loads are being developed for many tributaries. Without detailed loading information it is difficult to determine if the targets are being met and how to prioritize rehabilitation efforts. To help address these issues, SPAtially Referenced Regressions On Watershed attributes (SPARROW) models were developed for estimating loads and sources of phosphorus (P) and nitrogen (N) from the United States (U.S.) portion of the Great Lakes, Upper Mississippi, Ohio, and Red River Basins. Results indicated that recent U.S. loadings to Lakes Michigan and Ontario are similar to those in the 1980s, whereas loadings to Lakes Superior, Huron, and Erie decreased. Highest loads were from tributaries with the largest watersheds, whereas highest yields were from areas with intense agriculture and large point sources of nutrients. Tributaries were ranked based on their relative loads and yields to each lake. Input from agricultural areas was a significant source of nutrients, contributing ∼33-44% of the P and ∼33-58% of the N, except for areas around Superior with little agriculture. Point sources were also significant, contributing ∼14-44% of the P and 13-34% of the N. Watersheds around Lake Erie contributed nutrients at the highest rate (similar to intensively farmed areas in the Midwest) because they have the largest nutrient inputs and highest delivery ratio.
Taylor, Sabrina S; Sardell, Rebecca J; Reid, Jane M; Bucher, Thomas; Taylor, Nathan G; Arcese, Peter; Keller, Lukas F
Heterozygosity-fitness correlations use molecular measures of heterozygosity as proxy estimates of individual inbreeding coefficients (f) to examine relationships between inbreeding and fitness traits. Heterozygosity-fitness correlations partly depend on the assumption that individual heterozygosity and f are strongly and negatively correlated. Although theory predicts that this relationship will be strongest when mean f and variance in f are high, few studies of heterozygosity-fitness correlations include estimates of f based on pedigrees, which allow for more thorough examinations of the relationship between f, heterozygosity and fitness in nature. We examined relationships between pedigree-based estimates of f, multilocus heterozygosity (MLH) and the probability of survival to hatch in song sparrow nestmates. f and MLH were weakly, but significantly negatively correlated. Inbreeding coefficient predicted the probability of survival to hatch. In contrast, MLH did not predict the probability of survival to hatch nor did it account for residual variation in survival to hatch after statistically controlling for the effects of f. These results are consistent with the expectation that heterozygosity-f correlations will be weak when mean and variance in f are low. Our results also provide empirical support for recent simulation studies, which show that variation in MLH among siblings with equal f can be large and may obscure MLH-fitness relationships.
Lymburner, Alannah H; Kelly, Tosha R; Hobson, Keith A; MacDougall-Shackleton, Elizabeth A; MacDougall-Shackleton, Scott A
In seasonally migratory animals, migration distance often varies substantially within populations such that individuals breeding at the same site may overwinter different distances from the breeding grounds. Shorter migration may allow earlier return to the breeding grounds, which may be particularly advantageous to males competing to acquire a breeding territory. However, little is known about potential mechanisms that may mediate migration distance. We investigated naturally-occurring variation in androgen levels at the time of arrival to the breeding site and its relationship to overwintering latitude in male and female song sparrows (Melospiza melodia). We used stable isotope analysis of hydrogen (δ(2)H) in winter-grown claw tissue to infer relative overwintering latitude (migration distance), combined with 14years of capture records from a long-term study population to infer the arrival timing of males versus females. Relative to females, males had higher circulating androgen levels, migrated shorter distances, and were more likely to be caught early in the breeding season. Males that migrate short distances may benefit from early arrival at the breeding grounds, allowing them to establish a breeding territory. Even after controlling for sex and date, androgen levels were highest in individuals that migrated shorter distances. Our findings indicate that androgens and migration distance are correlated traits within and between sexes that may reflect individual variation within an integrated phenotype in which testosterone has correlated effects on behavioral traits such as migration.
Reid, Jane M; Arcese, Peter; Keller, Lukas F; Hasselquist, Dennis
Knowledge of the causes of variation in host immunity to parasitic infection and the time-scales over which variation persists, is integral to predicting the evolutionary and epidemiological consequences of host–parasite interactions. It is clear that offspring immunity can be influenced by parental immune experience, for example, reflecting transfer of antibodies from mothers to young offspring. However, it is less clear whether such parental effects persist or have functional consequences over longer time-scales, linking a parent's previous immune experience to future immune responsiveness in fully grown offspring. We used free-living song sparrows (Melospiza melodia) to quantify long-term effects of parental immune experience on offspring immune response. We experimentally vaccinated parents with a novel antigen and tested whether parental vaccination influenced the humoral antibody response mounted by fully grown offspring hatched the following year. Parental vaccination did not influence offspring baseline antibody titres. However, offspring of vaccinated mothers mounted substantially stronger antibody responses than offspring of unvaccinated mothers. Antibody responses did not differ between offspring of vaccinated and unvaccinated fathers. These data demonstrate substantial long-term effects of maternal immune experience on the humoral immune response of fully grown offspring in free-living birds. PMID:17148291
Reid, Jane M; Arcese, Peter; Keller, Lukas F; Elliott, Kyle H; Sampson, Laura; Hasselquist, Dennis
The consequences of inbreeding for host immunity to parasitic infection have broad implications for the evolutionary and dynamical impacts of parasites on populations where inbreeding occurs. To rigorously assess the magnitude and the prevalence of inbreeding effects on immunity, multiple components of host immune response should be related to inbreeding coefficient (f) in free-living individuals. We used a pedigreed, free-living population of song sparrows (Melospiza melodia) to test whether individual responses to widely used experimental immune challenges varied consistently with f. The patagial swelling response to phytohaemagglutinin declined markedly with f in both females and males in both 2002 and 2003, although overall inbreeding depression was greater in males. The primary antibody response to tetanus toxoid declined with f in females but not in males in both 2004 and 2005. Primary antibody responses to diphtheria toxoid were low but tended to decline with f in 2004. Overall inbreeding depression did not solely reflect particularly strong immune responses in outbred offspring of immigrant–native pairings or weak responses in highly inbred individuals. These data indicate substantial and apparently sex-specific inbreeding effects on immune response, implying that inbred hosts may be relatively susceptible to parasitic infection to differing degrees in males and females. PMID:17254994
Vyas, N.B.; Kuenzel, W.J.; Hill, E.F.; Romo, G.A.; Komaragiri, M.V.S.
Effects of a 14-day dietary exposure to an organophosphorus pesticide, acephate (acetylphosphoramidothioic acid O,S-dimethyl ester), were determined on cholinesterase activity in three regions (basal ganglia, hippocampus, and hypothalamus) of the white-throated sparrow, Zonotrichia albicollis, brain. All three regions experienced depressed cholinesterase activity between 0.5-2 ppm acephate. The regions exhibited cholinesterase recovery at 2-16 ppm acephate; however, cholinesterase activity dropped and showed no recovery at higher dietary levels (>16 ppm acephate). Evidence indicates that the recovery is initiated by the magnitude of depression, not the duration. In general, as acephate concentration increased, differences in ChE activity among brain regions decreased. Three terms are introduced to describe ChE response to acephate exposure: (1) ChE resistance threshold, (2) ChE compensation threshold, and (3) ChE depression threshold. It is hypothesized that adverse effects to birds in the field may occur at pesticide exposure levels customarily considered negligible.
SOCKMAN, KEITH W.
Morphology may affect behavioural performance through a direct, physical link or through indirect, secondary mechanisms. Although some evidence suggests that the bill morphology of songbirds directly constrains vocal performance, bill morphology may influence vocal performance through indirect mechanisms also, such as one in which morphology influences foraging and thus the ability to perform some types of vocal behaviour. This raises the possibility for ecologically induced variation in the relationship between morphology and behaviour. To investigate this, I used an information theoretic approach to examine the relationship between bill morphology and several measures of vocal performance in Lincoln’s sparrows (Melospiza lincolnii). I compared this relationship between two breeding seasons that differed markedly in ambient temperatures, phenology of habitat maturation, and food abundance. I found a strong curvilinear relationship between bill shape (height/width) and vocal performance in the seemingly less hospitable season but not in the other, leading to a difference between seasons in the population’s mean vocal performance. Currently, I do not know the cause of this annual variation. However, it could be due to the effects of bill shape on foraging and therefore on time budget, energy balance, or some other behavioural or physiological response that manifests mostly under difficult environmental conditions or, alternatively, to associations between male quality and both vocal performance and bill shape. Regardless of the cause, these results suggest the presence of an indirect, ecologically mediated link between morphology and behavioural performance, leading to annual variation in the prevailing environment of acoustic signals. PMID:20160859
Woltmann, Stefan; Stouffer, Philip C.; Bergeon Burns, Christine M.; Woodrey, Mark S.; Cashner, Mollie F.; Taylor, Sabrina S.
Seaside Sparrows (Ammodramus maritimus) along the Gulf of Mexico are currently recognized as four subspecies, including taxa in Florida (A. m. juncicola and A. m. peninsulae) and southern Texas (Ammodramus m. sennetti), plus a widespread taxon between them (A. m. fisheri). We examined population genetic structure of this “Gulf Coast” clade using microsatellite and mtDNA data. Results of Bayesian analyses (Structure, GeneLand) of microsatellite data from nine locations do not entirely align with current subspecific taxonomy. Ammodramus m. sennetti from southern Texas is significantly differentiated from all other populations, but we found evidence of an admixture zone with A. m. fisheri near Corpus Christi. The two subspecies along the northern Gulf Coast of Florida are significantly differentiated from both A. m. sennetti and A. m. fisheri, but are not distinct from each other. We found a weak signal of isolation by distance within A. m. fisheri, indicating this population is not entirely panmictic throughout its range. Although continued conservation concern is warranted for all populations along the Gulf Coast, A. m. fisheri appears to be more secure than the far smaller populations in south Texas and the northern Florida Gulf Coast. In particular, the most genetically distinct populations, those in Texas south of Corpus Christi, occupy unique habitats within a very small geographic range. PMID:25412194
Bonier, Frances; Eikenaar, Cas; Martin, Paul R; Moore, Ignacio T
Mating systems can vary among species and populations and thus influence evolutionary trajectories, ecological traits, and population demography. The siring of offspring by an extrapair male, or extrapair paternity (EPP), is a widespread and varied phenomenon in all vertebrate classes. However, we do not understand all of the factors associated with variation in EPP rates. The breeding synchrony hypothesis suggests that EPP rates should increase with latitude and elevation, whereas the paternal care hypothesis predicts that EPP rates should decrease with elevation. To address these hypotheses, we investigated how population EPP rates vary over elevation and latitude in emberizid sparrows. In comparative analyses including the effects of phylogeny, the relationship between EPP rates and elevation depended on latitude. EPP rates were greater in higher-latitude populations. But within higher-latitude populations, EPP rates decreased with increasing elevation. These findings provide support for both the breeding synchrony and paternal care hypotheses, suggesting that in lower-latitude, higher-elevation populations, the need for male parental care does not outweigh the benefits of seeking extrapair fertilizations in populations with relatively synchronous breeding. In contrast, at higher-latitude, higher-elevation sites, the need for male parental care is greater and might drive lower rates of extrapair mating despite highly synchronous breeding.
Woltmann, Stefan; Stouffer, Philip C; Bergeon Burns, Christine M; Woodrey, Mark S; Cashner, Mollie F; Taylor, Sabrina S
Seaside Sparrows (Ammodramus maritimus) along the Gulf of Mexico are currently recognized as four subspecies, including taxa in Florida (A. m. juncicola and A. m. peninsulae) and southern Texas (Ammodramus m. sennetti), plus a widespread taxon between them (A. m. fisheri). We examined population genetic structure of this "Gulf Coast" clade using microsatellite and mtDNA data. Results of Bayesian analyses (Structure, GeneLand) of microsatellite data from nine locations do not entirely align with current subspecific taxonomy. Ammodramus m. sennetti from southern Texas is significantly differentiated from all other populations, but we found evidence of an admixture zone with A. m. fisheri near Corpus Christi. The two subspecies along the northern Gulf Coast of Florida are significantly differentiated from both A. m. sennetti and A. m. fisheri, but are not distinct from each other. We found a weak signal of isolation by distance within A. m. fisheri, indicating this population is not entirely panmictic throughout its range. Although continued conservation concern is warranted for all populations along the Gulf Coast, A. m. fisheri appears to be more secure than the far smaller populations in south Texas and the northern Florida Gulf Coast. In particular, the most genetically distinct populations, those in Texas south of Corpus Christi, occupy unique habitats within a very small geographic range.
This contribution overviews neutron spectrum measurement, which was done on training reactor VR-1 Sparrow with a new nuclear fuel. Former nuclear fuel IRT-3M was changed for current nuclear fuel IRT-4M with lower enrichment of 235U (enrichment was reduced from former 36% to 20%) in terms of Reduced Enrichment for Research and Test Reactors (RERTR) Program. Neutron spectrum measurement was obtained by irradiation of activation foils at the end of pipe of rabit system and consecutive deconvolution of obtained saturated activities. Deconvolution was performed by computer iterative code SAND-II with 620 groups' structure. All gamma measurements were performed on Canberra HPGe. Activation foils were chosen according physical and nuclear parameters from the set of certificated foils. The Resulting differential flux at the end of pipe of rabit system agreed well with typical spectrum of light water reactor. Measurement of neutron spectrum has brought better knowledge about new reactor core C1 and improved methodology of activation measurement. (author)
Loggerhead shrike Ducks Aix sponsa Wood duck New World cuckoos Coccyzus americanus Yellow-billed cuckoo Colaptes auratus Northern flicker Enturus...Passerina cyanea Indigo bunting Melospiza melodia Song sparrow Passerculus sandwichensis Savanna sparrow Pipilo erythrophthalmus Rufus-sided towhee
Levitt, A J; Jost, J J; Mergl, K A; Hannigan, A; Degenova, J; Chung, S Y
New initiatives to house chronically street homeless (CSH) adults have led to increasing proportions of this population living in congregate supportive housing, but little is known about the impact of this shift on supportive housing programs. The present multisite, mixed-methods study examined service utilization and lease compliance among 52 chronically street homeless and 46 long-term shelter stayer (LTSS) adults during their first 12 months in congregate supportive housing. Quantitative analysis of administrative data revealed that CSH tenants used significantly more service resources than LTSS tenants, including more advocacy, escorting, and psychiatric treatment and more assistance with financial, housing, and mental and physical health issues. The 2 groups did not differ significantly on measures of lease compliance. Qualitative focus groups with CSH tenants, service provider staff, and property management staff all indicated that existing supportive housing services are suitable for this population, although some adjustments, additional resources, or both, may be indicated.
Feild, Robert M.
Summarizes a report that describes housing where student groups lease, purchase, or even develop their own living quarters. Considers the birth of the movement, federal student housing programs, and a view to future programs. (Author/DN)
The present invention provides a heat-resistant electrical insulator adapted for joining laser housing portions, which insulator comprises: an annulus; a channel in the annulus traversing the circumference and length of the housing; at least two ports, each communicating with the channel and an outer surface of the housing; and an attachment for securely attaching each end of the annulus to a laser housing member. 3 figs.
Duncan, David B.
The present invention provides a heat-resistant electrical insulator adapted for joining laser housing portions, which insulator comprises: an annulus; a channel in the annulus traversing the circumference and length of the housing; at least two ports, each communicating with the channel and an outer surface of the housing; and an attachment for securely attaching each end of the annulus to a laser housing member.
Dolbeare, Cushing N.; Canales, Judith A.
This report examines the housing characteristics and needs of Hispanic households in the United States, drawing on information from the 1980 Census and the 1983 Annual Housing Survey. Among the conclusions are the following: (1) housing quality is a major problem for more than one in six Hispanic families; (2) among Hispanic subgroups, Puerto…
Baker, Nick, Ed.
This issue of the quarterly newsletter "Rural Exchange" provides information and resources on accessible rural housing for the disabled. "Accessible Manufactured Housing Could Increase Rural Home Supply" (Nick Baker) suggests that incorporation of access features such as lever door handles and no-step entries into manufactured housing could help…
Milstead, W. Bryan; Hollister, Jeffrey W.; Moore, Richard B.; Walker, Henry A.
Global nutrient cycles have been altered by the use of fossil fuels and fertilizers resulting in increases in nutrient loads to aquatic systems. In the United States, excess nutrients have been repeatedly reported as the primary cause of lake water quality impairments. Setting nutrient criteria that are protective of a lakes ecological condition is one common solution; however, the data required to do this are not always easily available. A useful solution for this is to combine available field data (i.e., The United States Environmental Protection Agency (USEPA) National Lake Assessment (NLA)) with average annual nutrient load models (i.e., USGS SPARROW model) to estimate summer concentrations across a large number of lakes. In this paper we use this combined approach and compare the observed total nitrogen (TN) and total phosphorus (TN) concentrations in Northeastern lakes from the 2007 National Lake Assessment to those predicted by the Northeast SPARROW model. We successfully adjusted the SPARROW predictions to the NLA observations with the use of Vollenweider equations, simple input-output models that predict nutrient concentrations in lakes based on nutrient loads and hydraulic residence time. This allows us to better predict summer concentrations of TN and TP in Northeastern lakes and ponds. On average we improved our predicted concentrations of TN and TP with Vollenweider models by 18.7% for nitrogen and 19.0% for phosphorus. These improved predictions are being used in other studies to model ecosystem services (e.g., aesthetics) and dis-services (e.g. cyanobacterial blooms) for ~18,000 lakes in the Northeastern United States. PMID:24260579
Milstead, W Bryan; Hollister, Jeffrey W; Moore, Richard B; Walker, Henry A
Global nutrient cycles have been altered by the use of fossil fuels and fertilizers resulting in increases in nutrient loads to aquatic systems. In the United States, excess nutrients have been repeatedly reported as the primary cause of lake water quality impairments. Setting nutrient criteria that are protective of a lakes ecological condition is one common solution; however, the data required to do this are not always easily available. A useful solution for this is to combine available field data (i.e., The United States Environmental Protection Agency (USEPA) National Lake Assessment (NLA)) with average annual nutrient load models (i.e., USGS SPARROW model) to estimate summer concentrations across a large number of lakes. In this paper we use this combined approach and compare the observed total nitrogen (TN) and total phosphorus (TN) concentrations in Northeastern lakes from the 2007 National Lake Assessment to those predicted by the Northeast SPARROW model. We successfully adjusted the SPARROW predictions to the NLA observations with the use of Vollenweider equations, simple input-output models that predict nutrient concentrations in lakes based on nutrient loads and hydraulic residence time. This allows us to better predict summer concentrations of TN and TP in Northeastern lakes and ponds. On average we improved our predicted concentrations of TN and TP with Vollenweider models by 18.7% for nitrogen and 19.0% for phosphorus. These improved predictions are being used in other studies to model ecosystem services (e.g., aesthetics) and dis-services (e.g. cyanobacterial blooms) for ~18,000 lakes in the Northeastern United States.
Ballentine, Barbara; Greenberg, Russell
Background Adaptive divergence between populations in the face of strong selection on key traits can lead to morphological divergence between populations without concomitant divergence in neutral DNA. Thus, the practice of identifying genetically distinct populations based on divergence in neutral DNA may lead to a taxonomy that ignores evolutionarily important, rapidly evolving, locally-adapted populations. Providing evidence for a genetic basis of morphological divergence between rapidly evolving populations that lack divergence in selectively neutral DNA will not only inform conservation efforts but also provide insight into the mechanisms of the early processes of speciation. The coastal plain swamp sparrow, a recent colonist of tidal marsh habitat, differs from conspecific populations in a variety of phenotypic traits yet remains undifferentiated in neutral DNA. Methods and Principal Findings Here we use an experimental approach to demonstrate that phenotypic divergence between ecologically separated populations of swamp sparrows is the result of local adaptation despite the lack of divergence in neutral DNA. We find that morphological (bill size and plumage coloration) and life history (reproductive effort) differences observed between wild populations were maintained in laboratory raised individuals suggesting genetic divergence of fitness related traits. Conclusions and Significance Our results support the hypothesis that phenotypic divergence in swamps sparrows is the result of genetic differentiation, and demonstrate that adaptive traits have evolved more rapidly than neutral DNA in these ecologically divergent populations that may be in the early stages of speciation. Thus, identifying evolutionarily important populations based on divergence in selectively neutral DNA could miss an important level of biodiversity and mislead conservation efforts. PMID:20419104
Wright, Wesley E.
Shelter is a basic human need. Unfortunately, affordable housing is a need that low income families who are caring for children and adults with disabilities can rarely afford without assistance. Because participating families generally pay rent of no more than 30 percent of their adjusted monthly income, the Section 8 program can provide…
... 12 Banks and Banking 9 2012-01-01 2012-01-01 false Affordable housing-rental housing. 1807.401... TREASURY CAPITAL MAGNET FUND Qualification as Affordable Housing § 1807.401 Affordable housing—rental housing. To qualify as Affordable Housing, a rental Multi-family housing project financed with a CMF...
... 12 Banks and Banking 7 2011-01-01 2011-01-01 false Affordable housing-rental housing. 1807.401... TREASURY CAPITAL MAGNET FUND Qualification as Affordable Housing § 1807.401 Affordable housing—rental housing. To qualify as Affordable Housing, a rental Multi-family housing project financed with a CMF...
... 12 Banks and Banking 9 2013-01-01 2013-01-01 false Affordable housing-rental housing. 1807.401... TREASURY CAPITAL MAGNET FUND Qualification as Affordable Housing § 1807.401 Affordable housing—rental housing. To qualify as Affordable Housing, a rental Multi-family housing project financed with a CMF...
... 12 Banks and Banking 10 2014-01-01 2014-01-01 false Affordable housing-rental housing. 1807.401... TREASURY CAPITAL MAGNET FUND Qualification as Affordable Housing § 1807.401 Affordable housing—rental housing. To qualify as Affordable Housing, a rental Multi-family housing project financed with a CMF...
Wasserman, F.E.; Patterson, D.A.; Kunz, T.H.; Battista, S.P.; Byman, D.
The effect of chronic continuous wave microwave radiation on the foraging behavior of the White-throated Sparrow was examined using an optimal foraging laboratory technique. Birds were exposed to microwaves for seven days at a frequency of 2.45 GHz and power densities of 0.0, 0.1, 1.0, 10.0, and 25.0 mW/cm/sup 2/. Even though there were differences in foraging behaviors among power densities no trend was found for a dose response effect. Birds showed no significant differences in foraging behaviors among pre-exposure, exposure, and post-exposure periods.
Danner, Julie E; Fleischer, Robert C; Danner, Raymond M; Moore, Ignacio T
Female preference for local cultural traits has been proposed as a barrier to breeding among animal populations. As such, several studies have found correlations between male bird song dialects and population genetics over relatively large distances. To investigate if female choice for local dialects could act as a barrier to breeding between nearby and contiguous populations, we tested if variation in male song dialects explains genetic structure among eight populations of rufous-collared sparrows (Zonotrichia capensis) in Ecuador. Our study sites lay along a transect and adjacent study sites were separated by approximately 25km, an order of magnitude less than previously examined for this and most other species. This transect crossed an Andean ridge and through the Quijos River Valley, both of which may be barriers to gene flow. Using a variance partitioning approach, we show that song dialect is important in explaining population genetics, independent of the geographic variables: distance, the river valley, and the Andean Ridge. This result is consistent with the hypothesis that song acts as a barrier to breeding among populations in close proximity. In addition, songs of contiguous populations differed by the same degree or more than between two populations previously shown to exhibit female preference for local dialect, suggesting that birds from these populations would also breed preferentially with locals. As expected, all geographic variables (distance, the river valley, and the Andean Ridge) also predicted population genetic structure. Our results have important implications for the understanding if, and at what spatial scale, culture can affect population divergence. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.
Clough, Amber; Draughon, Jessica E.; Njie-Carr, Veronica; Rollins, Chiquita; Glass, Nancy
Research indicates that the need for safe housing and the economic resources to maintain safe housing are two of the most pressing concerns among abused women who are planning to or have recently left abusers. Intimate partner violence (IPV) is frequently an immediate cause or precursor to homelessness and housing instability. The aim of the study is to explore abused women’s experiences accessing affordable, safe, and stable housing. To achieve the aim, adult female IPV survivors answered questions about: 1) steps that were taken to secure housing; 2) safety issues after leaving the abuser; 3) barriers to obtaining housing; and 4) responses from housing and domestic violence advocacy systems related to survivors’ housing needs. Four major themes emerged from the in-depth interviews: 1) stable, affordable housing is critical in increasing safety; 2) survivors face multiple systemic or individual barriers; 3) survivors develop and utilize an array of creative and resourceful strategies; and 4) survivors identified a variety of supportive services tailored to address their needs. The findings inform practice, policy and research for both the housing and domestic violence service systems with an emphasis on collaboration to meet the complex safety and stable housing needs of survivors and their families, particularly following the impact on housing of the 2008 U.S. economic crisis and subsequent recession. PMID:25328440
... URBAN DEVELOPMENT Affirmative Fair Housing, Marketing (AFHM) Plan-Multifamily Housing, Affirmative Fair Housing Marketing (AFHM) Plan-Single Family Housing and Affirmative Fair Housing Marketing (AFHM) Plan... forms to describe their intent for marketing to ensure that they meet the Fair Housing...
Wise, Daniel R.; Johnson, Henry M.
The watershed model SPARROW (Spatially Referenced Regressions on Watershed attributes) was used to estimate mean annual surface-water nutrient conditions (total nitrogen and total phosphorus) and to identify important nutrient sources in catchments of the Pacific Northwest region of the United States for 2002. Model-estimated nutrient yields were generally higher in catchments on the wetter, western side of the Cascade Range than in catchments on the drier, eastern side. The largest source of locally generated total nitrogen stream load in most catchments was runoff from forestland, whereas the largest source of locally generated total phosphorus stream load in most catchments was either geologic material or livestock manure (primarily from grazing livestock). However, the highest total nitrogen and total phosphorus yields were predicted in the relatively small number of catchments where urban sources were the largest contributor to local stream load. Two examples are presented that show how SPARROW results can be applied to large rivers—the relative contribution of different nutrient sources to the total nitrogen load in the Willamette River and the total phosphorus load in the Snake River. The results from this study provided an understanding of the regional patterns in surface-water nutrient conditions and should be useful to researchers and water-quality managers performing local nutrient assessments.
Reid, Janem; Arcese, Peter; Cassidy, Alicel E V; Marr, Amyb; Smith, Jamesn M; Keller, Lukasf
Hamilton and Zuk's influential hypothesis of parasite-mediated sexual selection proposes that exaggerated secondary sexual ornaments indicate a male's addictive genetic immunity to parasites. However, genetic correlated of ornaments and immunity have rarely been explicitly identified. Evidence supporting Hamilton and Zuk's hypothesis has instead been gathered by looking for positive phenotypic correlations between ornamentation and immunity; such correlations are assumed to reflect causal, addictive relationships between these traits. We show that in a song sparrows, Melospiza melodia, male's song repertoire size, a secondary sexual trait, increased with his cell-mediated immune response (CMI) to an experimental challenge. However, this phenotypic correlation could be explained because both repertoire size and CMI declined with a male's inbreeding level. Repertoire size therefore primarily indicated a male's relative heterozygosity, a non-addictive genetic predictor of immunity. Caution may therefore be required when interpreting phenotypic correlations as support for Hamilton and Zuk's addictive model of sexual selection. However, our results suggest that female song sparrows choosing with large repertoires would on average acquire more outbred and therefore more heterozygous mates. Such genetic dominance effects on ornamentation are likely to influence evolutionary trajectories of female choice, and should be explicitly incorporated into genetic models of sexual selection.
Saleh, Dina; Domagalski, Joseph L.
The SPARROW (SPAtially Referenced Regressions On Watershed attributes) model was used to evaluate the spatial distribution of total nitrogen (TN) sources, loads, watershed yields, and factors affecting transport and decay in the stream network of California and portions of adjacent states for the year 2002. The two major TN sources to local catchments on a mass basis were fertilizers and manure (51.7%) and wastewater discharge (15.9%). Other sources contributed < 12%. Fertilizer use is widespread in the Central Valley region of California, and also important in several other regions because of the diversity of California agriculture. Precipitation, sand content of surficial soils, wetlands, and tile drains were important for TN movement to stream reaches. Median streamflow in the study area is about 0.04 m3/s. Aquatic losses of nitrogen were found to be most important in intermittent and small to medium sized streams (0.2-14 m3/s), while larger streams showed less loss, and therefore are important for TN transport. Nitrogen loss in reservoirs was found to be insignificant, possibly because most of the larger ones are located upstream of nitrogen sources. The model was used to show loadings, sources, and tributary inputs to several major rivers. The information provided by the SPARROW model is useful for determining both the major sources contributing nitrogen to streams and the specific tributaries that transport the load.
Preston, Stephen D.; Alexander, Richard B.; Schwarz, Gregory E.; Crawford, Charles G.
We compared the results of 12 recently calibrated regional SPARROW (SPAtially Referenced Regressions On Watershed attributes) models covering most of the continental United States to evaluate the consistency and regional differences in factors affecting stream nutrient loads. The models - 6 for total nitrogen and 6 for total phosphorus - all provide similar levels of prediction accuracy, but those for major river basins in the eastern half of the country were somewhat more accurate. The models simulate long-term mean annual stream nutrient loads as a function of a wide range of known sources and climatic (precipitation, temperature), landscape (e.g., soils, geology), and aquatic factors affecting nutrient fate and transport. The results confirm the dominant effects of urban and agricultural sources on stream nutrient loads nationally and regionally, but reveal considerable spatial variability in the specific types of sources that control water quality. These include regional differences in the relative importance of different types of urban (municipal and industrial point vs. diffuse urban runoff) and agriculture (crop cultivation vs. animal waste) sources, as well as the effects of atmospheric deposition, mining, and background (e.g., soil phosphorus) sources on stream nutrients. Overall, we found that the SPARROW model results provide a consistent set of information for identifying the major sources and environmental factors affecting nutrient fate and transport in United States watersheds at regional and subregional scales. ?? 2011 American Water Resources Association. This article is a U.S. Government work and is in the public domain in the USA.
Saad, David A.; Schwarz, Gregory; Robertson, Dale M.; Booth, Nathaniel
Stream-loading information was compiled from federal, state, and local agencies, and selected universities as part of an effort to develop regional SPAtially Referenced Regressions On Watershed attributes (SPARROW) models to help describe the distribution, sources, and transport of nutrients in streams throughout much of the United States. After screening, 2,739 sites, sampled by 73 agencies, were identified as having suitable data for calculating long-term mean annual nutrient loads required for SPARROW model calibration. These sites had a wide range in nutrient concentrations, loads, and yields, and environmental characteristics in their basins. An analysis of the accuracy in load estimates relative to site attributes indicated that accuracy in loads improve with increases in the number of observations, the proportion of uncensored data, and the variability in flow on observation days, whereas accuracy declines with increases in the root mean square error of the water-quality model, the flow-bias ratio, the number of days between samples, the variability in daily streamflow for the prediction period, and if the load estimate has been detrended. Based on compiled data, all areas of the country had recent declines in the number of sites with sufficient water-quality data to compute accurate annual loads and support regional modeling analyses. These declines were caused by decreases in the number of sites being sampled and data not being entered in readily accessible databases.
Crino, Ondi L; Johnson, Erin E; Blickley, Jessica L; Patricelli, Gail L; Breuner, Creagh W
Roads have been associated with behavioral and physiological changes in wildlife. In birds, roads decrease reproductive success and biodiversity and increase physiological stress. Although the consequences of roads on individuals and communities have been well described, the mechanisms through which roads affect birds remain largely unexplored. Here, we examine one mechanism through which roads could affect birds: traffic noise. We exposed nestling mountain white-crowned sparrows (Zonotrichia leucophrys oriantha) to experimentally elevated traffic noise for 5 days during the nestling period. Following exposure to traffic noise we measured nestling stress physiology, immune function, body size, condition and survival. Based on prior studies, we expected the traffic noise treatment to result in elevated stress hormones (glucocorticoids), and declines in immune function, body size, condition and survival. Surprisingly, nestlings exposed to traffic noise had lower glucocorticoid levels and improved condition relative to control nests. These results indicate that traffic noise does affect physiology and development in white-crowned sparrows, but not at all as predicted. Therefore, when evaluating the mechanisms through which roads affect avian populations, other factors (e.g. edge effects, pollution and mechanical vibration) may be more important than traffic noise in explaining elevated nestling stress responses in this species.
Pijnacker, Judith; Hagoort, Peter; Buitelaar, Jan; Teunisse, Jan-Pieter; Geurts, Bart
Although people with autism spectrum disorders (ASD) often have severe problems with pragmatic aspects of language, little is known about their pragmatic reasoning. We carried out a behavioral study on high-functioning adults with autistic disorder (n = 11) and Asperger syndrome (n = 17) and matched controls (n = 28) to investigate whether they are capable of deriving scalar implicatures, which are generally considered to be pragmatic inferences. Participants were presented with underinformative sentences like "Some sparrows are birds". This sentence is logically true, but pragmatically inappropriate if the scalar implicature "Not all sparrows are birds" is derived. The present findings indicate that the combined ASD group was just as likely as controls to derive scalar implicatures, yet there was a difference between participants with autistic disorder and Asperger syndrome, suggesting a potential differentiation between these disorders in pragmatic reasoning. Moreover, our results suggest that verbal intelligence is a constraint for task performance in autistic disorder but not in Asperger syndrome.
The relationship of energy and poultry production was explored in three areas: methane production from litter, broiler house insulation, and broiler house HVAC systems. The findings show that while a methane plant would not be popular with individual American poultry producers; the pay back in fuel and fertilizer, if the plant was located in close proximinity to the processing plant, would be favorable. Broiler house insulation has been dramatically improved since the outset of this study. Presently, all new installations in the survey area are the Environmental houses which are fully insulated. HVAC systems have had to keep pace with the introduction of better insulation. The new Environmental houses HVAC systems are fully automated and operating on a positive atmosphere principal. Ammonia and other problems have been kept in check while reducing air changes per house from a high of 7 per hour to as little as 3 per hour.
Lester, Michael B.; van Riper, Charles
Riparian ecosystems in arid environments provide critical habitat for breeding, migratory, and wintering birds, yet are often at risk of contamination by heavy metals. Birds and other animals living in contaminated areas are susceptible to adverse health effects as a result of long-term exposure and bioaccumulation of heavy metals. We investigated the distribution and cascading extent of heavy metal accumulation in Song Sparrows (Melospiza melodia) in Arizona’s upper Santa Cruz River watershed. This study had three goals: (1) quantify the degree of heavy metal accumulation in sparrows and determine the distributional patterns among study sites, (2) compare concentrations of metals found in this study to those found in studies performed prior to the 2009 international wastewater treatment plant upgrade, and (3) assess sparrow condition among sites with differing potential sources of contamination exposure. We examined six study sites that reflected different potential sources of contamination. Hematocrit values, body mass residuals, and leukocyte counts were used to assess sparrow condition. Cadmium, copper, mercury, nickel, and selenium exceeded background concentrations at some sites, but generally were lower than or similar to concentrations found in earlier studies performed prior to the 2009 international wastewater treatment plant upgrade. Concentrations were higher in recaptured birds in 2012 than in 2011 for 7 metals in feathers and 14 metals in blood, suggesting possible bioaccumulation. We found no cascading effects as a result of heavy metal exposure, but did find that heavy metal concentrations were reduced following the 2009 international wastewater treatment plant upgrade.
Cerame, Blain; Cox, James A.; Brumfield, Robb T.; Tucker, James W.; Taylor, Sabrina S.
Bachman's Sparrow (Peucaea aestivalis) is a fire-dependent species that has undergone range-wide population declines in recent decades. We examined genetic diversity in Bachman's Sparrows to determine whether natural barriers have led to distinct population units and to assess the effect of anthropogenic habitat loss and fragmentation. Genetic diversity was examined across the geographic range by genotyping 226 individuals at 18 microsatellite loci and sequencing 48 individuals at mitochondrial and nuclear genes. Multiple analyses consistently demonstrated little genetic structure and high levels of genetic variation, suggesting that populations are panmictic. Based on these genetic data, separate management units/subspecies designations or translocations to promote gene flow among fragmented populations do not appear to be necessary. Panmixia in Bachman's Sparrow may be a consequence of an historical range expansion and retraction. Alternatively, high vagility in Bachman's Sparrow may be an adaptation to the ephemeral, fire-mediated habitat that this species prefers. In recent times, high vagility also appears to have offset inbreeding and loss of genetic diversity in highly fragmented habitat. PMID:25180939
Monta, W. J.
An experimental investigation was conducted on a model of a wing control version of the Sparrow III type missile to determine the static aerodynamic characteristics over an angle of attack range from 0 deg to 40 deg for Mach numbers from 1.50 to 4.60.
Hofmeister, Erik K.; Dusek, Robert J.; Fassbinder-Orth, Carol; Owen, Benjamin; Franson, J. Christian
West Nile virus (WNV) spread to the US western plains states in 2003, when a significant mortality event attributed to WNV occurred in Greater Sage-grouse ( Centrocercus urophasianus ). The role of avian species inhabiting sagebrush in the amplification of WNV in arid and semiarid regions of the North America is unknown. We conducted an experimental WNV challenge study in Vesper Sparrows ( Pooecetes gramineus ), a species common to sagebrush and grassland habitats found throughout much of North America. We found Vesper Sparrows to be moderately susceptible to WNV, developing viremia considered sufficient to transmit WNV to feeding mosquitoes, but the majority of birds were capable of surviving infection and developing a humoral immune response to the WNV nonstructural 1 and envelope proteins. Despite clearance of viremia, after 6 mo, WNV was detected molecularly in three birds and cultured from one bird. Surviving Vesper Sparrows were resistant to reinfection 6 mo after the initial challenge. Vesper sparrows could play a role in the amplification of WNV in sagebrush habitat and other areas of their range, but rapid clearance of WNV may limit their importance as competent amplification hosts of WNV.
Cerame, Blain; Cox, James A; Brumfield, Robb T; Tucker, James W; Taylor, Sabrina S
Bachman's Sparrow (Peucaea aestivalis) is a fire-dependent species that has undergone range-wide population declines in recent decades. We examined genetic diversity in Bachman's Sparrows to determine whether natural barriers have led to distinct population units and to assess the effect of anthropogenic habitat loss and fragmentation. Genetic diversity was examined across the geographic range by genotyping 226 individuals at 18 microsatellite loci and sequencing 48 individuals at mitochondrial and nuclear genes. Multiple analyses consistently demonstrated little genetic structure and high levels of genetic variation, suggesting that populations are panmictic. Based on these genetic data, separate management units/subspecies designations or translocations to promote gene flow among fragmented populations do not appear to be necessary. Panmixia in Bachman's Sparrow may be a consequence of an historical range expansion and retraction. Alternatively, high vagility in Bachman's Sparrow may be an adaptation to the ephemeral, fire-mediated habitat that this species prefers. In recent times, high vagility also appears to have offset inbreeding and loss of genetic diversity in highly fragmented habitat.
The NASA Technology Utilization House, called Tech House, was designed and constructed at NASA's Langley Research Center in Hampton, Virginia, to demonstrate new technology that is available or will be available in the next several years and how the application of aerospace technology could help advance the homebuilding industry. Solar energy use, energy and water conservation, safety, security, and cost were major considerations in adapting the aerospace technology to the construction of Tech House.
14 Two years later, the House made another change to its rules governing resolutions of inquiry, requiring not merely a day’s delay but also...of Government “does not necessarily belong to the province of legislation. It does not profess to be asked for that object.”42 Second, if the House ...recognized that the power of impeachment gives the House “the right to investigate the conduct of all public officers under the Government . This is
The number of cliff swallow (Petrochelidon pyrrhonata) nests at a farmstead in southeastern North Dakota increased at an average annual rate of 87% with house sparrow (Passer domesticus) removal during 1957-60 and 1970-72. Harassment of nesting cliff swallows by house sparrows, adult swallow mortality from cold weather in late May, and collapse of nests were the principal observed factors limiting swallow population growth during a 17-year period.
Pointer, B.; Harned, D. A.; Harden, S.
The loading of nutrients into lacustrine ecosystems is an issue that concerns scientists and policy makers due to the potentially negative effect on drinking water sources. In this study, nitrogen loads are estimated for streams entering two central North Carolina lakes: Falls Lake in Durham County and B. Everett Jordan Lake in Chatham County. Both of these lakes have been placed on the North Carolina list of impaired waters due to excessive concentrations of chlorophyll a. Nutrient management rules are being established for both lakes. This study is being conducted collaboratively as part of the USGS National Water Quality Assessment (NAWQA) and the North Carolina Department of Environment and Natural Resources (NCDENR) nonpoint source 319 program. Water-quality and streamflow data collected from a total of 9 stream sites (4 upstream of Falls Lake; 5 upstream of Jordan Lake) over 11 years (1997-2008) were used to estimate annual nitrogen loads to each lake using the USGS LOADEST (LOAD ESTimation) model (http://water.usgs.gov/software/loadest/). LOADEST is a multiple linear regression model that estimates constituent loads on a site-specific basis. In order to compare local and regional-scale models, nitrogen loads computed with a SPARROW (SPAtially-Referenced Regression On Watershed attributes) model (http://water.usgs.gov/nawqa/sparrow/) for the southeastern United States also were compiled for each lake. SPARROW model predictions for nitrogen loading are based on a single model year of 2002. The SPARROW model relates empirical nutrient data with watershed characteristics, allowing prediction of loads from all drainage basins that flow into each lake. In contrast, the site-specific data needed for LOADEST is limited to a subset of sampled tributaries. Therefore, for comparison’s sake, load estimations reported in this study from the SPARROW model are summed loads from the subset of basins with corresponding LOADEST calculations - 4 of 56 basins for Falls Lake
Germain, Ryan R; Wolak, Matthew E; Arcese, Peter; Losdat, Sylvain; Reid, Jane M
Quantifying direct and indirect genetic effects of interacting females and males on variation in jointly expressed life-history traits is central to predicting microevolutionary dynamics. However, accurately estimating sex-specific additive genetic variances in such traits remains difficult in wild populations, especially if related individuals inhabit similar fine-scale environments. Breeding date is a key life-history trait that responds to environmental phenology and mediates individual and population responses to environmental change. However, no studies have estimated female (direct) and male (indirect) additive genetic and inbreeding effects on breeding date, and estimated the cross-sex genetic correlation, while simultaneously accounting for fine-scale environmental effects of breeding locations, impeding prediction of microevolutionary dynamics. We fitted animal models to 38 years of song sparrow (Melospiza melodia) phenology and pedigree data to estimate sex-specific additive genetic variances in breeding date, and the cross-sex genetic correlation, thereby estimating the total additive genetic variance while simultaneously estimating sex-specific inbreeding depression. We further fitted three forms of spatial animal model to explicitly estimate variance in breeding date attributable to breeding location, overlap among breeding locations and spatial autocorrelation. We thereby quantified fine-scale location variances in breeding date and quantified the degree to which estimating such variances affected the estimated additive genetic variances. The non-spatial animal model estimated nonzero female and male additive genetic variances in breeding date (sex-specific heritabilities: 0·07 and 0·02, respectively) and a strong, positive cross-sex genetic correlation (0·99), creating substantial total additive genetic variance (0·18). Breeding date varied with female, but not male inbreeding coefficient, revealing direct, but not indirect, inbreeding
4. View of houses from Port Ludlow, houses no. 69 and 70, facing southwest. House no. 69 in foreground, house no. 70 in background. - Houses Moved from Port Ludlow, Various Addresses (moved from Port Ludlow, WA), Port Gamble, Kitsap County, WA
Rep. Peters, Scott H. [D-CA-52
12/03/2014 Received in the Senate and Read twice and referred to the Committee on Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs. (All Actions) Tracker: This bill has the status Passed HouseHere are the steps for Status of Legislation:
Responses of chief housing officers of 118 4-year colleges and universities to a survey focusing on costs, security, policies, and preferences provide a picture of college housing. More than 67% of respondents say that their colleges are planning to build more residential space. (SLD)
Donoho, II, Michael R.; Elliott, Christopher M.
A fluid delivery system includes a first pump having a first drive assembly, a second pump having a second drive assembly, and a pump housing. At least a portion of each of the first and second pumps are located in the housing.
For 14 years, Mountain Outreach, a program at Cumberland College (Williamsburg, Kentucky), has enabled college students to participate in community service projects. Recently, 35 students traveled to New Mexico to build a house for a Navajo elder who was unable to obtain adequate housing. Participants discuss their learning experiences and their…
The house paintings of the South African Ndebele people are more than just an attempt to improve the aesthetics of a community; they are a source of identity and significance for Ndebele women. In this article, the author describes an art project wherein students use the tradition of Ndebele house painting as inspiration for creating their own…
Dawe, R. H.; Evans, J. T.
Spring clips seal housings for electronic circuitry, preventing electromagnetic interference from entering or leaving housings. Clips also keep dust out of housing. Since no bolts are used, housing can be opened quickly; unlike bolts, clips can be used on thin-walled housing. Seal was developed for an X-band array amplifier.
Depending on where you look for statistics, the number of students enrolling in colleges or universities is increasing, decreasing or remaining the about the same. Regardless of those trends, campus housing is a marketing tool for institutions looking to draw students to and keep them on campus. Schools need to offer sufficient beds and…
1. HOUSE, VIEW TO NORTHEAST, SUMMER KITCHEN AND SMOKE HOUSE ARE IN THE BACKGROUND - Kiel Farmstead, House, East side State Route 4, one half mile south of U.S. Route 64, Mascoutah, St. Clair County, IL
Crast, Jessica; Bloomsmith, Mollie A.; Jonesteller, Trina
The separate influences of spatial density and housing quality on the behavior of captive animals are difficult to measure because the two factors are often intrinsically linked. Here, we recorded affiliative and agonistic behavior in adult sooty mangabeys in various housing situations, testing spatial density and housing quality changes separately (N=26 experienced spatial density changes; N=12 experienced housing quality changes). We varied spatial density by 50% while holding housing quality constant and we varied housing quality while holding spatial density constant (achieved by comparing two types of run-housing that varied in the amount of visual privacy and outdoor access). Each housing condition was one month in duration. Prior to collecting data in each housing condition, we evaluated the subjects’ initial responses to the change in housing environment during two-week novelty periods. Affiliative behavior did not change during the novelty periods. Agonistic behavior initially increased slightly when spatial density increased and it decreased significantly when spatial density decreased; it also decreased when subjects moved to housing that offered more visual privacy and outdoor space, indicating that the mangabeys were sensitive to these housing changes. After the novelty periods, affiliative behavior increased under higher spatial density, but remained unchanged across housing quality conditions; agonistic behavior remained unchanged across all conditions. Results suggest that a prolonged increase in spatial density led the mangabeys to adopt a tension-reduction coping strategy, in which the increase in affiliative behavior alleviates a presumed increase in social tension. Reducing visual privacy and choice did not affect the mangabeys’ behavior, post-novelty period. Thus, like many other primates, the mangabeys managed tension by flexibly adapting to changes in their housing environment in ways that reduce the risk of severe aggression. This study
Anderson, Gene R.; Armendariz, Marcelino G.; Baca, Johnny R.F.; Bryan, Robert P.; Carson, Richard F.; Duckett, III, Edwin B.; McCormick, Frederick B.; Miller, Gregory V.; Peterson, David W.; Smith, Terrance T.
This invention relates to an optical transmitter, receiver or transceiver module, and more particularly, to an apparatus for connecting a first optical connector to a second optical connector. The apparatus comprises: (1) a housing having at least a first end and at least a second end, the first end of the housing capable of receiving the first optical connector, and the second end of the housing capable of receiving the second optical connector; (2) a longitudinal cavity extending from the first end of the housing to the second end of the housing; and (3) an electromagnetic shield comprising at least a portion of the housing. This invention also relates to an apparatus for housing a flexible printed circuit board, and this apparatus comprises: (1) a mounting structure having at least a first surface and a second surface; (2) alignment ridges along the first and second surfaces of the mounting structure, the alignment ridges functioning to align and secure a flexible printed circuit board that is wrapped around and attached to the first and second surfaces of the mounting structure; and (3) a series of heat sink ridges adapted to the mounting structure, the heat sink ridges functioning to dissipate heat that is generated from the flexible printed circuit board.
Angelier, F; Ballentine, B; Holberton, R L; Marra, P P; Greenberg, R
Although differences in the corticosterone stress response have frequently been reported between populations or closely related subspecies, their origin remains unclear. These differences may appear because individuals adjust their corticosterone stress response to the environmental conditions they are experiencing. However, they may also result from selection that has favoured individuals with specific corticosterone stress response or from environmental factors that have affected the development of the corticosterone stress response during early life. We investigated these hypotheses by studying the corticosterone stress response of two closely related subspecies of swamp sparrows (Melospiza sp.). We showed for the first time that two closely related subspecies can differ in their corticosterone stress response when raised at the laboratory and held in similar conditions for a year. Thus, we demonstrated that selection, developmental processes or a conjunction of both of these processes can account for variation in the stress response between closely related subspecies.
Saad, D.A.; Schwarz, G.E.; Robertson, D.M.; Booth, N.L.
Stream-loading information was compiled from federal, state, and local agencies, and selected universities as part of an effort to develop regional SPAtially Referenced Regressions On Watershed attributes (SPARROW) models to help describe the distribution, sources, and transport of nutrients in streams throughout much of the United States. After screening, 2,739 sites, sampled by 73 agencies, were identified as having suitable data for calculating long-term mean annual nutrient loads required for SPARROW model calibration. These sites had a wide range in nutrient concentrations, loads, and yields, and environmental characteristics in their basins. An analysis of the accuracy in load estimates relative to site attributes indicated that accuracy in loads improve with increases in the number of observations, the proportion of uncensored data, and the variability in flow on observation days, whereas accuracy declines with increases in the root mean square error of the water-quality model, the flow-bias ratio, the number of days between samples, the variability in daily streamflow for the prediction period, and if the load estimate has been detrended. Based on compiled data, all areas of the country had recent declines in the number of sites with sufficient water-quality data to compute accurate annual loads and support regional modeling analyses. These declines were caused by decreases in the number of sites being sampled and data not being entered in readily accessible databases. ?? 2011 American Water Resources Association. This article is a U.S. Government work and is in the public domain in the USA.
Soma, Masayo; Mori, Chihiro
Music and dance are two remarkable human characteristics that are closely related. Communication through integrated vocal and motional signals is also common in the courtship displays of birds. The contribution of songbird studies to our understanding of vocal learning has already shed some light on the cognitive underpinnings of musical ability. Moreover, recent pioneering research has begun to show how animals can synchronize their behaviors with external stimuli, like metronome beats. However, few studies have applied such perspectives to unraveling how animals can integrate multimodal communicative signals that have natural functions. Additionally, studies have rarely asked how well these behaviors are learned. With this in mind, here we cast a spotlight on an unusual animal behavior: non-vocal sound production associated with singing in the Java sparrow (Lonchura oryzivora), a songbird. We show that male Java sparrows coordinate their bill-click sounds with the syntax of their song-note sequences, similar to percussionists. Analysis showed that they produced clicks frequently toward the beginning of songs and before/after specific song notes. We also show that bill-clicking patterns are similar between social fathers and their sons, suggesting that these behaviors might be learned from models or linked to learning-based vocalizations. Individuals untutored by conspecifics also exhibited stereotypical bill-clicking patterns in relation to song-note sequence, indicating that while the production of bill clicking itself is intrinsic, its syncopation appears to develop with songs. This paints an intriguing picture in which non-vocal sounds are integrated with vocal courtship signals in a songbird, a model that we expect will contribute to the further understanding of multimodal communication. PMID:25992841
Smith, Adam D.; Paton, Peter W. C.; McWilliams, Scott R.
Atmospheric conditions fundamentally influence the timing, intensity, energetics, and geography of avian migration. While radar is typically used to infer the influence of weather on the magnitude and spatiotemporal patterns of nocturnal bird migration, monitoring the flight calls produced by many bird species during nocturnal migration represents an alternative methodology and provides information regarding the species composition of nocturnal migration. We used nocturnal flight call (NFC) recordings of at least 22 migratory songbirds (14 warbler and 8 sparrow species) during fall migration from eight sites along the mainland and island coasts of Rhode Island to evaluate five hypotheses regarding NFC detections. Patterns of warbler and sparrow NFC detections largely supported our expectations in that (1) NFC detections associated positively and strongly with wind conditions that influence the intensity of coastal bird migration and negatively with regional precipitation; (2) NFCs increased during conditions with reduced visibility (e.g., high cloud cover); (3) NFCs decreased with higher wind speeds, presumably due mostly to increased ambient noise; and (4) coastal mainland sites recorded five to nine times more NFCs, on average, than coastal nearshore or offshore island sites. However, we found little evidence that (5) nightly or intra-night patterns of NFCs reflected the well-documented latitudinal patterns of migrant abundance on an offshore island. Despite some potential complications in inferring migration intensity and species composition from NFC data, the acoustic monitoring of NFCs provides a viable and complementary methodology for exploring the spatiotemporal patterns of songbird migration as well as evaluating the atmospheric conditions that shape these patterns. PMID:24643060
Sewall, Kendra B.; Caro, Samuel P.; Sockman, Keith W.
Male animals often change their behavior in response to the level of competition for mates. Male Lincoln's sparrows (Melospiza lincolnii) modulate their competitive singing over the period of a week as a function of the level of challenge associated with competitors' songs. Differences in song challenge and associated shifts in competitive state should be accompanied by neural changes, potentially in regions that regulate perception and song production. The monoamines mediate neural plasticity in response to environmental cues to achieve shifts in behavioral state. Therefore, using high pressure liquid chromatography with electrochemical detection, we compared levels of monoamines and their metabolites from male Lincoln's sparrows exposed to songs categorized as more or less challenging. We compared levels of norepinephrine and its principal metabolite in two perceptual regions of the auditory telencephalon, the caudomedial nidopallium and the caudomedial mesopallium (CMM), because this chemical is implicated in modulating auditory sensitivity to song. We also measured the levels of dopamine and its principal metabolite in two song control nuclei, area X and the robust nucleus of the arcopallium (RA), because dopamine is implicated in regulating song output. We measured the levels of serotonin and its principal metabolite in all four brain regions because this monoamine is implicated in perception and behavioral output and is found throughout the avian forebrain. After controlling for recent singing, we found that males exposed to more challenging song had higher levels of norepinephrine metabolite in the CMM and lower levels of serotonin in the RA. Collectively, these findings are consistent with norepinephrine in perceptual brain regions and serotonin in song control regions contributing to neuroplasticity that underlies socially-induced changes in behavioral state. PMID:23555809
Mukai, Motoko; Replogle, Kirstin; Drnevich, Jenny; Wang, Gang; Wacker, Douglas; Band, Mark; Clayton, David F.; Wingfield, John C.
Background Male song sparrows (Melospiza melodia) are territorial year-round; however, neuroendocrine responses to simulated territorial intrusion (STI) differ between breeding (spring) and non-breeding seasons (autumn). In spring, exposure to STI leads to increases in luteinizing hormone and testosterone, but not in autumn. These observations suggest that there are fundamental differences in the mechanisms driving neuroendocrine responses to STI between seasons. Microarrays, spotted with EST cDNA clones of zebra finch, were used to explore gene expression profiles in the hypothalamus after territorial aggression in two different seasons. Methodology/Principal Findings Free-living territorial male song sparrows were exposed to either conspecific or heterospecific (control) males in an STI in spring and autumn. Behavioral data were recorded, whole hypothalami were collected, and microarray hybridizations were performed. Quantitative PCR was performed for validation. Our results show 262 cDNAs were differentially expressed between spring and autumn in the control birds. There were 173 cDNAs significantly affected by STI in autumn; however, only 67 were significantly affected by STI in spring. There were 88 cDNAs that showed significant interactions in both season and STI. Conclusions/Significance Results suggest that STI drives differential genomic responses in the hypothalamus in the spring vs. autumn. The number of cDNAs differentially expressed in relation to season was greater than in relation to social interactions, suggesting major underlying seasonal effects in the hypothalamus which may determine the differential response upon social interaction. Functional pathway analyses implicated genes that regulate thyroid hormone action and neuroplasticity as targets of this neuroendocrine regulation. PMID:19997634
Smith, Adam D; Paton, Peter W C; McWilliams, Scott R
Atmospheric conditions fundamentally influence the timing, intensity, energetics, and geography of avian migration. While radar is typically used to infer the influence of weather on the magnitude and spatiotemporal patterns of nocturnal bird migration, monitoring the flight calls produced by many bird species during nocturnal migration represents an alternative methodology and provides information regarding the species composition of nocturnal migration. We used nocturnal flight call (NFC) recordings of at least 22 migratory songbirds (14 warbler and 8 sparrow species) during fall migration from eight sites along the mainland and island coasts of Rhode Island to evaluate five hypotheses regarding NFC detections. Patterns of warbler and sparrow NFC detections largely supported our expectations in that (1) NFC detections associated positively and strongly with wind conditions that influence the intensity of coastal bird migration and negatively with regional precipitation; (2) NFCs increased during conditions with reduced visibility (e.g., high cloud cover); (3) NFCs decreased with higher wind speeds, presumably due mostly to increased ambient noise; and (4) coastal mainland sites recorded five to nine times more NFCs, on average, than coastal nearshore or offshore island sites. However, we found little evidence that (5) nightly or intra-night patterns of NFCs reflected the well-documented latitudinal patterns of migrant abundance on an offshore island. Despite some potential complications in inferring migration intensity and species composition from NFC data, the acoustic monitoring of NFCs provides a viable and complementary methodology for exploring the spatiotemporal patterns of songbird migration as well as evaluating the atmospheric conditions that shape these patterns.
Mace, R L
Universal design in housing is a growing and beneficial concept. It is subtle in its differences from barrier-free, accessible, and industry standard housing. Accessibility standards and codes have not mandated universal design and do not apply to most housing. Universal design exceeds their minimum specifications for accessible design and results in homes that are usable by and marketable to almost everyone. Universal homes avoid use of special assistive technology devices and, instead, incorporate consumer products and design features that are easily usable and commonly available.
The Hood River Passive Project was developed by Root Design Build of Hood River Oregon using the Passive House Planning Package (PHPP) to meet all of the requirements for certification under the European Passive House standards. The Passive House design approach has been gaining momentum among residential designers for custom homes and BEopt modeling indicates that these designs may actually exceed the goal of the U.S. Department of Energy's (DOE) Building America program to reduce home energy use by 30%-50% (compared to 2009 energy codes for new homes). This report documents the short term test results of the Shift House and compares the results of PHPP and BEopt modeling of the project.
Wilkins, J. R.
Housing used to observe gravitation effects on specimens embedded in support media, such as agar, supports microbial specimens vertically for time-lapsed cinemicrographic studies. Procedure cannot be performed with conventional microscopes which see specimens in horizontal plane only.
Emenaker, Charles E.
Describes a sixth-grade interdisciplinary geometry unit based on Charles Dickens's "A Christmas Carol". Focuses on finding area, volume, and perimeter, and working with estimation, decimals, and fractions in the context of making gingerbread houses. (ASK)
Allouche, Erez; Jaganathan, Arun P.
The invention is a new turbine structure having a housing that rotates. The housing has a sidewall, and turbine blades are attached to a sidewall portion. The turbine may be completely open in the center, allowing space for solids and debris to be directed out of the turbine without jamming the spinning blades/sidewall. The turbine may be placed in a generator for generation of electrical current.
2. Keeper's house, light tower and oil house, view north, south and east sides of keeper's house, south side of tower and oil house - Owl's Head Light Station, Off State Highway 73 just east of Rockland on Owl's Head Bay, Owls Head, Knox County, ME
12. Fuel house and fog signal house, view northeast, southwest side of fuel house, west and south sides of fog signal house - Cape Elizabeth Light Station, Near Two Lights State Park at end of Two Lights Road, off State Highway 77, Cape Elizabeth, Cumberland County, ME
7. Keeper's house, fog signal house and light tower, view north northeast, west and south sides of keeper's house and tower, southwest and southeast sides of fog signal house - West Quoddy Head Light Station, At eastern tip of West Quaddy Head, Lubec, Washington County, ME
3. Bell house, light tower and keeper's house, view west, southeast side and northeast front of bell house, southeast sides of tower and keeper's house - Burnt Coat Harbor Light Station, At Hackamock Head on Swan's Island opposite Harbor Island at entrance to Burnt Coat Harbor, Swans Island, Hancock County, ME
1. General view, two-and-a-half story house at left. (The house next door is George McCraig House, HABS No. PA-1593). Photocopied from December 1957 photograph on file at Philadelphia Historical Commission - Henry Elwell House, 812 South Front Street, Philadelphia, Philadelphia County, PA
Los Angeles Blue Ribbon Committee for Affordable Housing, CA.
A 1988 mayoral committee assessed the seriousness of Los Angeles (California) housing problems and found that the city's housing efforts were sufficient in the 1960s, when the Federal Government took primary responsibility for housing and the average wage was adequate to support the cost of the average house or apartment. However, the following…
91. VIEW NORTHWEST OF SCRAP HOUSE AND CAST HOUSE, BUILDINGS 101 AND 72; BUILDING 101 IN THE CENTER OF THE PHOTOGRAPH HOUSED SCRAP METAL CLEANING AND PROCESSING FACILITIES; BUILDING 72 AT RIGHT CENTER HOUSED MELTING FURNACES AND CONTINUOUS CASTING MACHINERY - Scovill Brass Works, 59 Mill Street, Waterbury, New Haven County, CT
Weitzman, Michael; Baten, Ahmareen; Rosenthal, David G; Hoshino, Risa; Tohn, Ellen; Jacobs, David E
The connection between housing and health is well established. Physical, chemical, and biological aspects of the child's home, such as cleanliness, moisture, pests, noise, accessibility, injury risks, and other forms of housing environmental quality, all have the potential to influence multiple aspects of the health and development of children. Basic sanitation, reduced household crowding, other improvements in housing and expanded, and improved housing regulations have led to advances in children's health. For example, lead poisoning prevention policies have profoundly reduced childhood lead exposure in the United States. This and many other successes highlight the health benefits for families, particularly children, by targeting interventions that reduce or eliminate harmful exposures in the home. Additionally, parental mental health problems, food insecurity, domestic violence, and the presence of guns in children's homes all are largely experienced by children in their homes, which are not as yet considered part of the Healthy Homes agenda. There is a large movement and now a regulatory structure being put in place for healthy housing, which is becoming closely wedded with environmental health, public health, and the practice of pediatrics. The importance of homes in children's lives, history of healthy homes, asthma, and exposures to lead, carbon monoxide, secondhand/thirdhand smoke, radon, allergy triggers is discussed, as well as how changes in ambient temperature, increased humidity, poor ventilation, water quality, infectious diseases, housing structure, guns, electronic media, family structure, and domestic violence all affect children's health.
Zerger, Suzanne; Pridham, Katherine Francombe; Jeyaratnam, Jeyagobi; Hwang, Stephen W; O'Campo, Patricia; Kohli, Jaipreet; Stergiopoulos, Vicky
This study explores factors contributing to delays and relocations during the implementation of the Housing First model in Toronto, Ontario. While interruptions in housing tenure are expected en route to recovery and housing stability, consumer and service provider views on finding and keeping housing remain largely unknown. In-person interviews and focus groups were conducted with 48 study participants, including 23 case managers or housing workers and 25 consumers. The following three factors contributed to housing delays and transfers: (1) the effectiveness of communication and collaboration among consumers and service providers, (2) consumer-driven preferences and ambivalence, and (3) provider prioritization of consumer choice over immediate housing access. Two strategies--targeted communications and consumer engagement in housing searches--supported the housing process. Several factors affect the timing and stability of housing. Communication between and among providers and consumers, and a shared understanding of consumer choice, can further support choice and recovery.
GUARD HOUSE AND SOUTH FIRE HOUSE, VICINITY MAP. (Shows the Guard House and Barracks, and South Fire House in relation to nearby roads, railroad tracks, and the piers). Navy Yard, Mare Island, California. P.W. Drawing No. C-1899, approved 1941; file no. 930-C-1. Scale one inch to forty feet. 72 cn x 97 cm. Ink on vellum - Mare Island Naval Shipyard, Guard House & Barracks, Railroad Avenue near Eighteenth Street, Vallejo, Solano County, CA
Jacobs, David E; Breysse, Jill; Dixon, Sherry L; Aceti, Susan; Kawecki, Carol; James, Mark; Wilson, Jay
Green building systems have proliferated recently, but studies are limited of associated health and housing outcomes. The authors measured self-reported resident physical and mental health, allergens, and building conditions at baseline and one-year follow-up in a low-income housing development being renovated in accordance with green healthy housing improvements (Enterprise Green Communities standards and Leadership in Energy & Environmental Design [LEED] gold certification). Self-reported general health in adults significantly improved from 59% to 67% (p = .026), with large statistically significant improvements in water/ dampness problems, cockroaches and rodents, and reduced pesticide use. Median cockroach (Bla g1) and mouse (Mus m1) allergen dust loadings showed large and statistically significant reductions from baseline to three months postintervention and were sustained at one year (both p < .05). Energy and water cost savings were 16% and 54%, respectively. Incorporating Enterprise Green Communities and LEED standards in low-income housing renovation improves health and housing conditions and can help to reduce disparities. All green housing standards should include health-related requirements.
... A senior living community is a place where older adults live. There are many different types of senior ... be a good fit for an active, independent older adult who prefers to own his or her home. ...
Arnberg, Nina N.
Stable social organization in a wide variety of organisms has been linked to kinship, which can minimize conflict due to the indirect fitness benefits from cooperating with relatives. In birds, kin selection has been mostly studied in the context of reproduction or in species that are social year round. Many birds however are migratory and the role of kinship in the winter societies of these species is virtually unexplored. A previous study detected striking social complexity and stability in wintering populations of migratory golden-crowned sparrows (Zonotrichia atricapilla)---individuals repeatedly form close associations with the same social partners, including across multiple winters. In chapter one I test the possibility that kinship might be involved in these close and stable social affiliations. I examine the relationship between kinship and social structure for two of the consecutive wintering seasons from the previous study. I found no evidence that social structure was influenced by kinship---relatedness between most pairs of individuals was at most that of first cousins (and mostly far lower) and Mantel tests revealed no relationship between kinship and pairwise interaction frequency. Kinship also failed to predict social structure in more fine-grained analyses, including analyses of each sex separately (in the event that sex-biased migration might limit kin selection to one sex) and separate analyses for each social community. The complex winter societies of golden-crowned sparrows appear to be based on cooperative benefits unrelated to kin selection. Although the complex social structure detected in wintering golden-crowned sparrows is not predicted by kinship, genetic variation may play a role in variation of winter social traits. In chapter two, I investigate the genetic causes of variation in fitness-related traits in a winter population of golden-crowned sparrows. Individuals show great variation in morphological and behavioral traits that may play
Morón, Carlos; Payán, Alejandro; García, Alfonso; Bosquet, Francisco
This document develops the study of an implementation project of a home automation system in a housing placed in the town of Galapagar, Madrid. This house, which is going to be occupied by a four-member family, consists of 67 constructed square meters distributed in lounge, kitchen, three bedrooms, bath, bathroom and terrace, this being a common arrangement in Spain. Thus, this study will allow extracting conclusions about the adequacy of the home automation in a wide percentage of housing in Spain. In this document, three house automation proposals are developed based on the requirements of the client and the different home automation levels that the Spanish House and Building Automation Association has established, besides two parallel proposals relating to the safety and the technical alarms. The mentioned proposed systems are described by means of product datasheets and descriptions, distribution plans, measurements, budgets and flow charts that describe the functioning of the system in every case. An evaluation of each system is included, based on other studies conclusions on this matter, where expected energy savings from each design, depending on the current cost of lighting, water and gas, as well as the expected economic amortization period is evaluated. PMID:27223285
Morón, Carlos; Payán, Alejandro; García, Alfonso; Bosquet, Francisco
This document develops the study of an implementation project of a home automation system in a housing placed in the town of Galapagar, Madrid. This house, which is going to be occupied by a four-member family, consists of 67 constructed square meters distributed in lounge, kitchen, three bedrooms, bath, bathroom and terrace, this being a common arrangement in Spain. Thus, this study will allow extracting conclusions about the adequacy of the home automation in a wide percentage of housing in Spain. In this document, three house automation proposals are developed based on the requirements of the client and the different home automation levels that the Spanish House and Building Automation Association has established, besides two parallel proposals relating to the safety and the technical alarms. The mentioned proposed systems are described by means of product datasheets and descriptions, distribution plans, measurements, budgets and flow charts that describe the functioning of the system in every case. An evaluation of each system is included, based on other studies conclusions on this matter, where expected energy savings from each design, depending on the current cost of lighting, water and gas, as well as the expected economic amortization period is evaluated.
As emerging and persistent pathogens increase in prevalence, the agriculture-wildlife interface has been identified as a field requiring further research. Acceleration of wildlife urbanization, exotic species introductions, and habitat encroachment are disrupting barriers that once separated microb...
1987. “Enhanced immune responses in broiler chicks fed methionine-supplemented diets.” Poultry Sci. 66:1147-1154. White, J. 1992. “Protocol for the...Biol. Lab. 17:40-42. Miller, D. S., D. B. Peakall, and W. B. Kinter. 1978. “Ingestion of crude oil: sublethal effects in herring gull chicks
Terrestrial wild birds commonly associated with poultry farms have the potential to contribute to the spread of H5N1 highly pathogenic avian influenza virus within or between poultry facilities or between domesticated and wild bird populations. This potential, however, varies between species and is...
Padgett, Deborah K.; Gulcur, Leyla; Tsemberis, Sam
The literature on homeless adults with severe mental illness is generally silent on a critical issue surrounding service delivery--the contrast between housing first and treatment first program philosophies. This study draws on data from a longitudinal experiment contrasting a housing first program (which offers immediate permanent housing without…
Cooper, Daniel; Luengo-Prado, María José
This paper examines whether a rise in house prices that occurs immediately prior to children entering college has an impact on their earnings as adults. Higher house prices provide homeowners with additional funds to invest in their children's human capital. The results show that a 1 percentage point increase in house prices, when children are 17…
vegetated with exotic and invasive species such as Russian thistle (Salsola kali), annual kochia (Kochia scoparia), and bur buttercup ( Ranunculus ...sage (Amphispiza belli), and Vesper sparrows (Pooecetes gramineus ). Waterfowl have only been documented using the storage lagoons, which are not...Vesper Sparrow (Pooecetes gramineus ) 3 Emberizidae G5 S4 Protected White-crowned Sparrow (Zonotrichia leucophrys ) 26 Emberizidae G5 S5 Protected
Vallerand, Robert J.; And Others
Administered life satisfaction questionnaire to 199 French-speaking older adults in Montreal, living in nursing homes and in the community. Found that elderly persons living in regular community housing, in low-cost community housing, and in high self-determination nursing homes had similar levels of life satisfaction, and more satisfaction than…
Sandoval, Luis; Epperly, Kevin L; Klicka, John; Mennill, Daniel J
The large number of endemic species in Middle America is frequently attributed to the interplay of geographical barriers and historical climatic changes in the region. This process promotes genetic divergence between populations, and given enough time, may yield new species. Animals that inhabit mid-elevation or highland habitats may be disproportionately affected in this way. Genetic analyses of animals in this region allow us to better understand how historical patterns of isolation have influenced the generation of new species in this biodiversity hotspot. We studied the biogeography and systematics of two closely related genera of sparrows (Passerellidae): Melozone and Aimophila. Collectively, this group is distributed from the southwestern United States and southward as far as central Costa Rica. We sampled 81 individuals of 8 Melozone and 2 Aimophila species, from 19 localities distributed throughout their ranges. We reconstructed phylogenetic relationships and time-calibrated species trees using multilocus sequence data comprised of one mitochondrial gene and five nuclear genes. We conducted an ancestral area reconstruction analysis to determine the probability of ancestral range at each divergent event. Despite analyzing six loci, we were unable to obtain a fully resolved phylogenetic tree. We recovered four main lineages: lineage 1 includes four Melozone species distributed north of Isthmus of Tehuantepec (M. albicollis, M. crissalis, M. aberti, M. fusca); lineage 2 includes three Melozone species distributed south of the Isthmus of Tehuantepec (M. biarcuata, M. cabanisi, M. leucotis); lineage 3 lineage consists of a single species endemic to the Pacific coast of Mexico (M. kieneri); and lineage 4 includes the more widely distributed sparrows in the genus Aimophila. Our analyses suggest that these genera probably originated during the late Miocene in the Madrean Highlands of southern Mexico. We identified dispersal as the prevalent cause of speciation in
Kelly, Jeffrey F.; Bridge, Eli S.; Engel, Michael H.; Reinking, Dan L.; Boyle, W. Alice
In August 2013, we observed a high incidence (44%) of synchronous bands of reduced melanin (a type of fault bar we have termed “pallid bands”) across the rectrices of juvenile Grasshopper Sparrows (Ammodrammus savannarum) captured near El Reno, Oklahoma. Earlier that year, on May 31, the site was struck by a severe storm which rained hailstones exceeding 5.5 cm diameter and spawned an historic 4.2 km-wide tornado <8 km to the south of the site. We hypothesized that this stressor had induced the pallid bands. An assessment of Grasshopper Sparrow nesting phenology indicated that a large number of nestlings were likely growing tail feathers when the storm hit. The pallid bands were restricted to the distal half of feathers and their widths significantly increased as a function of distance from the tip (i.e., age at formation). We predicted that if stress had caused these pallid bands, then a spike in circulating δ15N originating from tissue catabolism during the stress response would have been incorporated into the developing feather. From 18 juveniles captured at the site in August we measured δ15N and δ13C stable isotope ratios within four to five 0.25–0.40 mg feather sections taken from the distal end of a tail feather; the pallid band, if present, was contained within only one section. After accounting for individual and across-section variation, we found support for our prediction that feather sections containing or located immediately proximal to pallid bands (i.e., the pallid band region) would show significantly higher δ15N than sections outside this region. In contrast, the feathers of juveniles with pallid bands compared to normal appearing juveniles showed significantly lower δ15N. A likely explanation is that the latter individuals hatched after the May 31 storm and had consumed a trophically-shifted diet relative to juveniles with pallid bands. Considering this, the juveniles of normal appearance were significantly less abundant within our
Ross, Jeremy D; Kelly, Jeffrey F; Bridge, Eli S; Engel, Michael H; Reinking, Dan L; Boyle, W Alice
In August 2013, we observed a high incidence (44%) of synchronous bands of reduced melanin (a type of fault bar we have termed "pallid bands") across the rectrices of juvenile Grasshopper Sparrows (Ammodrammus savannarum) captured near El Reno, Oklahoma. Earlier that year, on May 31, the site was struck by a severe storm which rained hailstones exceeding 5.5 cm diameter and spawned an historic 4.2 km-wide tornado <8 km to the south of the site. We hypothesized that this stressor had induced the pallid bands. An assessment of Grasshopper Sparrow nesting phenology indicated that a large number of nestlings were likely growing tail feathers when the storm hit. The pallid bands were restricted to the distal half of feathers and their widths significantly increased as a function of distance from the tip (i.e., age at formation). We predicted that if stress had caused these pallid bands, then a spike in circulating δ (15)N originating from tissue catabolism during the stress response would have been incorporated into the developing feather. From 18 juveniles captured at the site in August we measured δ (15)N and δ (13)C stable isotope ratios within four to five 0.25-0.40 mg feather sections taken from the distal end of a tail feather; the pallid band, if present, was contained within only one section. After accounting for individual and across-section variation, we found support for our prediction that feather sections containing or located immediately proximal to pallid bands (i.e., the pallid band region) would show significantly higher δ (15)N than sections outside this region. In contrast, the feathers of juveniles with pallid bands compared to normal appearing juveniles showed significantly lower δ (15)N. A likely explanation is that the latter individuals hatched after the May 31 storm and had consumed a trophically-shifted diet relative to juveniles with pallid bands. Considering this, the juveniles of normal appearance were significantly less abundant within
Schwarz, Gregory E.; Smith, Richard A.; Alexander, Richard B.; Gray, John R.
meter resolution land-use information from the National Land Cover Data set (NLCD) (U.S. Geological Survey, 2000a). More than 76,000 reservoirs from the National Inventory of Dams (NID) (U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, 1996) are identified as potential sediment sinks. Other, non-anthropogenic sources and sinks are identified using soil information from the State Soil Survey Geographic (STATSGO) data base (Schwarz and Alexander, 1995) and spatial coverages representing surficial rock type and vegetative cover. The SPARROW model empirically relates these diverse spatial datasets to estimates of long-term, mean annual sediment flux computed from concentration and flow measurements collected over the period 1985-95 from more than 400 monitoring stations maintained by the National Stream Quality Accounting Network (Alexander and others, 1998), the National Water Quality Assessment Program, and U.S. Geological Survey District offices (Turcios and Gray, in press). The calibrated model is used to estimate sediment flux for over 60,000 stream segments included in the River Reach File 1 (RF1) stream network (Alexander and others, 1999). SPARROW uses statistical methods to calibrate a simple, structural model of riverine water quality, one that imposes mass balance in accounting for changes in contaminant flux. As applied here, the mass-balance approach facilitates the interpretation of model results in terms of physical processes affecting sediment transport, and makes possible the estimation of various rates of sediment generation and loss associated with stream channels and features of the landscape. The statistical approach provides a basis for assessing the error of these inferred rates and of the error in extrapolated estimates of sediment flux made for streams in the RF1 network. An important implication of the holistic modeling approach adopted in this analysis is that estimates of sediment production and loss are based on, and therefore consistent with, measurements of
5. Relationship of chicken house, privy, claim house, and residence to each other and immediate surroundings, looking northeast - George Spangerberger Farmstead, 2012 West Illinois Avenue, South Hutchinson, Reno County, KS
10. Relationship of residence, claim house, chicken house, west tool shed, and east tool shed to each other and immediate surroundings, looking west - George Spangerberger Farmstead, 2012 West Illinois Avenue, South Hutchinson, Reno County, KS
SUMMER KITCHEN AND SMOKE HOUSE AND HOUSE, VIEW TO WEST/ SOUTHWEST - Kiel Farmstead, Summer Kitchen & Smokehouse, East side State Route 4, one half mile south of U.S. Route 64, Mascoutah, St. Clair County, IL
2. Keeper's house, light tower and bell house, view east, west and south sides - Bass Harbor Head Light Station, At southwest tip of Mount Desert Island off State Route 102, Bass Harbor, Hancock County, ME
2. Oil house, fog signal house and light tower, view southwest, east and north sides - Great Duck Island Light Station, At southern tip of Great Duck Island southeast of Bass Harbor & northeast of Frenchboro, Frenchboro, Hancock County, ME
1. Keeper's house, light tower and bell house, view northeast, northwest and southwest sides - Burnt Coat Harbor Light Station, At Hackamock Head on Swan's Island opposite Harbor Island at entrance to Burnt Coat Harbor, Swans Island, Hancock County, ME
5. Shed, keeper's house, boathouse, light tower and oil house, view southeast, northwest and southwest sides - Goat Island Light Station, Goat Island, next to entrance to Cape Porpoise Harbor, just south of Trott Island, Cape Porpoise, York County, ME
INTERIOR VIEW OF THE GENERATING HOUSE SHOWING THE 'HOUSE GENERATOR' AND GOVERNOR ASSEMBLY. - Wilson Dam & Hydroelectric Plant, Spanning Tennessee River at Wilson Dam Road (Route 133), Muscle Shoals, Colbert County, AL
... URBAN DEVELOPMENT SECTION 8 TENANT BASED ASSISTANCE: HOUSING CHOICE VOUCHER PROGRAM Special Housing..., sanitary facilities in accordance with § 982.401(b), and food preparation and refuse disposal facilities...
1. Keeper's house, light tower and boat house, view southwest, northeast and northwest sides - Pumpkin Island Light Station, Pumpkin Island, at northern end of Eggemoggin Beach, off northwest end of Little Deer Island, Eggemoggin, Hancock County, ME
The Hood River Passive Project was developed by Root Design Build of Hood River Oregon using the Passive House Planning Package (PHPP) to meet all of the requirements for certification under the European Passive House standards. The Passive House design approach has been gaining momentum among residential designers for custom homes and BEopt modeling indicates that these designs may actually exceed the goal of the U.S. Department of Energy's (DOE) Building America program to "reduce home energy use by 30%-50% (compared to 2009 energy codes for new homes). This report documents the short term test results of the Shift House and compares the results of PHPP and BEopt modeling of the project. The design includes high R-Value assemblies, extremely tight construction, high performance doors and windows, solar thermal DHW, heat recovery ventilation, moveable external shutters and a high performance ductless mini-split heat pump. Cost analysis indicates that many of the measures implemented in this project did not meet the BA standard for cost neutrality. The ductless mini-split heat pump, lighting and advanced air leakage control were the most cost effective measures. The future challenge will be to value engineer the performance levels indicated here in modeling using production based practices at a significantly lower cost.
The Hood River Passive Project was developed by Root Design Build of Hood River Oregon using the Passive House Planning Package (PHPP) to meet all of the requirements for certification under the European Passive House standards. The Passive House design approach has been gaining momentum among residential designers for custom homes and BEopt modeling indicates that these designs may actually exceed the goal of the U.S. Department of Energy's (DOE) Building America program to reduce home energy use by 30%-50% (compared to 2009 energy codes for new homes). This report documents the short term test results of the Shift House and compares the results of PHPP and BEopt modeling of the project. The design includes high R-Value assemblies, extremely tight construction, high performance doors and windows, solar thermal DHW, heat recovery ventilation, moveable external shutters and a high performance ductless mini-split heat pump. Cost analysis indicates that many of the measures implemented in this project did not meet the BA standard for cost neutrality. The ductless mini-split heat pump, lighting and advanced air leakage control were the most cost effective measures. The future challenge will be to value engineer the performance levels indicated here in modeling using production based practices at a significantly lower cost.
Get a quick glimpse of some of the most important ways to protect your home from mold by this interactive tour of the Mold House. Room-by-room, you'll learn about common mold issues and how to address them.
Commission on Civil Rights, Washington, DC.
Few rights are as basic as acquiring a home of one's choice. The home and neighborhood are the environment in which families live and rear their children. For minorities, the home usually means housing vacated by whites, who, because of their race as well as ability to pay, are able to acquire a more desirable dwelling elsewhere. Congress, in…
Peller, Lili E.
Lili Peller's "The Children's House" essay begins where Maria Montessori left off in her description of space articulations. Peller does not name Montessori specifically as she always had a desire to become independent in her own right as a neo-Freudian child analyst. But the Haus Der Kinder founded in summer of 1922 suggests a total…
California Univ., Berkeley. Univ. Residential Building System.
Target costs for the University Residential Building System (URBS) Project of the University of California are presented. Findings depict the effectiveness of building design and material applications and should be useful in guiding future student housing design work, whether the design utilizes the URBS system or not. Ten recently constructed…
School physics rarely stands still for long. Environmental physics is now an option in some post-16 courses in England. The physics of environments, and in particular the built environment, offers a recognizable context in which to see the applications of physics at work. This article considers how a model doll's house might be used to help…
Two fourth-grade teachers presented the idea of using the author's art class to inspire the students to write creatively. The theme of scary stories needed an art project to match. The author immediately had a favorite lesson in mind. By putting a small twist on one of her standard "Frank Lloyd Wright House" projects, scary plans began to take…
About two years into her first urban superintendency, Gerry House knows she cannot solve every problem on-on-one but has created a responsive system to handle parents' complaints. The Memphis school superintendent hopes to boost minority achievement, ensure that all children learn at high levels, bolster community confidence in the schooling…
... 24 Housing and Urban Development 5 2012-04-01 2012-04-01 false Fair housing. 1715.27 Section 1715.27 Housing and Urban Development Regulations Relating to Housing and Urban Development (Continued) OFFICE OF ASSISTANT SECRETARY FOR HOUSING-FEDERAL HOUSING COMMISSIONER, DEPARTMENT OF HOUSING AND...
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... 24 Housing and Urban Development 5 2010-04-01 2010-04-01 false Fair housing. 1715.27 Section 1715.27 Housing and Urban Development Regulations Relating to Housing and Urban Development (Continued) OFFICE OF ASSISTANT SECRETARY FOR HOUSING-FEDERAL HOUSING COMMISSIONER, DEPARTMENT OF HOUSING AND...
... 12 Banks and Banking 7 2011-01-01 2011-01-01 false Housing plans. 1281.15 Section 1281.15 Banks and Banking FEDERAL HOUSING FINANCE AGENCY HOUSING GOALS AND MISSION FEDERAL HOME LOAN BANK HOUSING GOALS Housing Goals § 1281.15 Housing plans. (a) Housing plan requirement. If the Director...
... 24 Housing and Urban Development 5 2011-04-01 2011-04-01 false Fair housing. 1715.27 Section 1715.27 Housing and Urban Development Regulations Relating to Housing and Urban Development (Continued) OFFICE OF ASSISTANT SECRETARY FOR HOUSING-FEDERAL HOUSING COMMISSIONER, DEPARTMENT OF HOUSING AND...
... 24 Housing and Urban Development 2 2010-04-01 2010-04-01 false Housing standards. 248.147 Section 248.147 Housing and Urban Development Regulations Relating to Housing and Urban Development (Continued) OFFICE OF ASSISTANT SECRETARY FOR HOUSING-FEDERAL HOUSING COMMISSIONER, DEPARTMENT OF HOUSING AND...
... 12 Banks and Banking 10 2014-01-01 2014-01-01 false Housing plans. 1281.15 Section 1281.15 Banks and Banking FEDERAL HOUSING FINANCE AGENCY HOUSING GOALS AND MISSION FEDERAL HOME LOAN BANK HOUSING GOALS Housing Goals § 1281.15 Housing plans. (a) Housing plan requirement. If the Director...
... 24 Housing and Urban Development 5 2014-04-01 2014-04-01 false Fair housing. 1715.27 Section 1715.27 Housing and Urban Development Regulations Relating to Housing and Urban Development (Continued) OFFICE OF ASSISTANT SECRETARY FOR HOUSING-FEDERAL HOUSING COMMISSIONER, DEPARTMENT OF HOUSING AND...
... 24 Housing and Urban Development 2 2013-04-01 2013-04-01 false Housing standards. 248.147 Section 248.147 Housing and Urban Development Regulations Relating to Housing and Urban Development (Continued) OFFICE OF ASSISTANT SECRETARY FOR HOUSING-FEDERAL HOUSING COMMISSIONER, DEPARTMENT OF HOUSING AND...
... 24 Housing and Urban Development 2 2012-04-01 2012-04-01 false Housing standards. 248.147 Section 248.147 Housing and Urban Development Regulations Relating to Housing and Urban Development (Continued) OFFICE OF ASSISTANT SECRETARY FOR HOUSING-FEDERAL HOUSING COMMISSIONER, DEPARTMENT OF HOUSING AND...
... 24 Housing and Urban Development 2 2014-04-01 2014-04-01 false Housing standards. 248.147 Section 248.147 Housing and Urban Development Regulations Relating to Housing and Urban Development (Continued) OFFICE OF ASSISTANT SECRETARY FOR HOUSING-FEDERAL HOUSING COMMISSIONER, DEPARTMENT OF HOUSING AND...
... 24 Housing and Urban Development 5 2013-04-01 2013-04-01 false Fair housing. 1715.27 Section 1715.27 Housing and Urban Development Regulations Relating to Housing and Urban Development (Continued) OFFICE OF ASSISTANT SECRETARY FOR HOUSING-FEDERAL HOUSING COMMISSIONER, DEPARTMENT OF HOUSING AND...
... 12 Banks and Banking 9 2012-01-01 2012-01-01 false Housing plans. 1281.15 Section 1281.15 Banks and Banking FEDERAL HOUSING FINANCE AGENCY HOUSING GOALS AND MISSION FEDERAL HOME LOAN BANK HOUSING GOALS Housing Goals § 1281.15 Housing plans. (a) Housing plan requirement. If the Director...
... 12 Banks and Banking 9 2013-01-01 2013-01-01 false Housing plans. 1281.15 Section 1281.15 Banks and Banking FEDERAL HOUSING FINANCE AGENCY HOUSING GOALS AND MISSION FEDERAL HOME LOAN BANK HOUSING GOALS Housing Goals § 1281.15 Housing plans. (a) Housing plan requirement. If the Director...
THE TOWER HOUSE, LOOKING WEST. The tower house provided a water tank on the second floor that gravity fed water to the Kineth house and farm buildings. The one-story addition to the west of the tower provided workshop space. The hog shed is seen on the left of the image and the concrete foundation of the upright silo is in the foreground on the right. - Kineth Farm, Tower House, 19162 State Route 20, Coupeville, Island County, WA
Lopak, V; Eikelboom, R
Male rats that are moved from individual to pair housing suppress their feeding for a few days [O'Connor R, Eikelboom R. The effects of changes in housing on feeding and wheel running. Physiol Behav 2000;68:361-371]. The present study explored whether the suppression was a result of the period of individual housing or the novelty of the other animal. Two groups of 16 rats were pair-housed and one group of rats was individually housed for 21 days. The individually housed rats were then pair-housed (IP group) and rats in one of the pair-housed groups were re-housed with novel partners (NP group), while rats in the other pair-housed group remained with the same partner (SP group). Feeding was suppressed only for rats in the IP group, suggesting that the novelty of the partner did not suppress feeding, but rather, the change from individual to pair housing did. Water consumption was also measured, but was unaffected by the re-housing manipulation.
Sabat, Pablo; Gonzalez-Vejares, Sandra; Maldonado, Karin
The urine field osmolality in Zonotrichia capensis along a latitudinal gradient in rainfall and temperature in Chile was examined. We also investigated latitudinal variation in the renal traits that mediate how these birds cope with dehydration. We used the delta15N of this species' tissue to investigate whether the reliance on animals and seeds varied among birds and if it had any effect on excretion and renal traits. We found a significant latitudinal variation in urine osmolality, a variable that was correlated with habitat aridity. We also found that the kidney size and proportion of kidney devoted to medullary tissue differed between birds from arid and mesic localities, but not in a lineal fashion with aridity. The increment in the position in the food web, as measured by delta15N, led to an increment in urine osmolality, without changes in kidney features. Our data suggested that differences in dietary habits in the field could be not extended enough to cause changes in the kidney structure in Rufous-collared sparrows.
Keller, L F; Reid, J M; Arcese, P
Mutation accumulation (MA) and antagonistic pleiotropy (AP) have each been hypothesized to explain the evolution of 'senescence' or deteriorating fitness in old age. These hypotheses make contrasting predictions concerning age dependence in inbreeding depression in traits that show senescence. Inbreeding depression is predicted to increase with age under MA but not under AP, suggesting one empirical means by which the two can be distinguished. We use pedigree and life-history data from free-living song sparrows (Melospiza melodia) to test for additive and interactive effects of age and individual inbreeding coefficient (f) on fitness components, and thereby assess the evidence for MA. Annual reproductive success (ARS) and survival (and therefore reproductive value) declined in old age in both sexes, indicating senescence in this short-lived bird. ARS declined with f in both sexes and survival declined with f in males, indicating inbreeding depression in fitness. We observed a significant agexf interaction for male ARS (reflecting increased inbreeding depression as males aged), but not for female ARS or survival in either sex. These analyses therefore provide mixed support for MA. We discuss the strengths and limitations of such analyses and therefore the value of natural pedigreed populations in testing evolutionary models of senescence.
Huynh, L Y; Maney, D L; Thomas, J W
Chromosomal inversions have been of long-standing interest to geneticists because they are capable of suppressing recombination and facilitating the formation of adaptive gene complexes. An exceptional inversion polymorphism (ZAL2(m)) in the white-throated sparrow (Zonotrichia albicollis) is linked to variation in plumage, social behavior and mate choice, and is maintained in the population by negative assortative mating. The ZAL2(m) polymorphism is a complex inversion spanning > 100 Mb and has been proposed to be a strong suppressor of recombination, as well as a potential model for studying neo-sex chromosome evolution. To quantify and evaluate these features of the ZAL2(m) polymorphism, we generated sequence from 8 ZAL2(m) and 16 ZAL2 chromosomes at 58 loci inside and 4 loci outside the inversion. Inside the inversion we found that recombination was completely suppressed between ZAL2 and ZAL2(m), resulting in uniformly high levels of genetic differentiation (F(ST)=0.94), the formation of two distinct haplotype groups representing the alternate chromosome arrangements and extensive linkage disequilibrium spanning ~104 Mb within the inversion, whereas gene flow was not suppressed outside the inversion. Finally, although ZAL2(m) homozygotes are exceedingly rare in the population, occurring at a frequency of < 1%, we detected evidence of historical recombination between ZAL2(m) chromosomes inside the inversion, refuting its potential status as a non-recombining autosome.
Bethelehem Steel Corporation (BSC) is planning to conduct a demonstration project involving an integrated system that can be retrofitted into coke oven gas handling systems to address a variety of environmental and operational factors in a more cost-effective manner. Successful application of this technology to existing US coke plants could: (1) reduce emissions of sulfur dioxide, cyanide, and volatile organic compounds (including benzene) (2) reduce the cost and handling of processing feed chemicals, (3) disposal costs of nuisance by-products and (4) increase reliability and reduce operation/maintenance requirements for coke oven gas desulfurization systems. The proposed system will remove sulfur from the coke oven gas in the form of hydrogen sulfide using the ammonia indigenous to the gas as the primary reactive chemical. Ammonia and hydrogen cyanide are also removed in this process. The hydrogen sulfide removed from the coke oven gas in routed to a modified Claus plant for conversion to a saleable sulfur by-product. Ammonia and hydrogen cyanide will be catalytically converted to hydrogen, nitrogen, carbon dioxide, and carbon monoxide. The tail gas from the sulfur recovery unit is recycled to the coke oven gas stream, upstream of the new gas cleaning system. The proposed demonstration project will be installed at the existing coke oven facilities at BSC's Sparrows Point Plant. This volume describes the proposed actions and the resulting environmental impacts. 21 refs., 19 figs., 9 tabs.
Movement for Canadian Literacy, 2001
The Movement for Canadian Literacy (MCL) is a national non-profit organization representing literacy coalitions, organizations and individuals from every province and territory. Since 1978 MCL has worked to: (1) inform the federal government and the general public about issues related to adult literacy in Canada; (2) provide a national forum for…
Robinson, D. M.; Rowland, C. W.
Lens window seal in tunable-diode-laser housing replaces plan parallel window. Lens seals housing and acts as optical-output coupler, thus eliminating need for additional reimaging or collimating optics.
Gurgel-Gonçalves, Rodrigo; Abad-Franch, Fernando; Ferreira, Jonatas B C; Santana, Daniella B; Cuba, César A Cuba
Sylvatic triatomines of the genus Rhodnius commonly fly into houses in Latin America, maintaining the risk of Chagas disease transmission in spite of control efforts. In the recent past, adult bugs collected inside houses in central Brazil were identified as R. prolixus, a primary disease vector whose natural geographical range excludes this region. Three nearly sibling species (R. neglectus, R. nasutus, and R. robustus), secondary vectors with limited epidemiological significance, occur naturally south of the Brazilian Amazon. The specific status of Rhodnius specimens found inside houses in central Brazil is therefore an epidemiologically important (and still debated) issue. We used wing and head geometric morphometrics to investigate the taxonomic status of 230 adult specimens representing all four 'R. prolixus group' species (19 populations from palm trees, domiciles, and reference laboratory colonies). Discriminant analyses of shape variation allowed for an almost perfect reclassification of individuals to their putative species. Shape patterning revealed no consistent differences between most specimens collected inside houses in central Brazil and R. neglectus, and showed that R. robustus and R. neglectus occur sympatrically (and fly into houses) in southern Amazonia. Furthermore, all Brazilian specimens clearly differed from our reference R. prolixus population. Using geometric morphometrics, we confidently ascribed individual triatomines to their species within the problematic 'R. prolixus group', illustrating the potential value of this approach in entomological surveillance. Our results strongly support the idea that R. neglectus, and not R. prolixus, is the species invading houses in central Brazil.
Simons, J. W.; And Others
Intended to assist the producer in meeting the housing regulations of Federal, state, and local governments for migratory workers and thereby to attract better labor through adequate housing, this agricultural handbook contains discussions of the migrant-labor situation; regulations and standards; general housing considerations (i.e., length of…
Casey-Powell, Deborah, Ed.
The purpose of this book is to update housing professionals on the current issues and future trends facing college and university apartment operations in the 21st century. Its chapters are: (1) "The History of Apartment Housing" (Rena Buchan); (2) "Research in Apartment Housing" (Donald Whalen); (3) "Community Services and…
Interactions between staff in Neighbourhood Houses, and the socially and educationally disadvantaged community members who visit Neighbourhood Houses, have been viewed through many lenses, including community development, social support, caring and compassion. This paper looks at Neighbourhood Houses as sites of pedagogical practice. More…
Hibbert, R.; Miles, C.; Jones, R.; Peck, C.; Anderson, J.; Jacobson, V.; Dale, A.M.
A project to assess and initiate passive solar energy retrofits to US Navy family housing is described. The current data base for Navy housing (ECOP), and its enhancement for passive solar purposes options proposed for Navy housing are explained. The analysis goals and methods to evaluate the retrofits are discussed. An educational package to explain the retrofits is described.
Since 1977, Saint Vincent Catholic Medical Centers of New York City has been creating and maintaining supportive housing offerings for at-risk populations, such as individuals with HIV/AIDS, those with substance abuse challenges, and the mentally ill. By providing a continuum of medical and social services, the organization aims to help residents stabilize and rebuild their lives. Saint Vincent sees empowerment as a key step toward helping individuals maintain their health, re-enter the community, seek employment, and pursue other goals. Some of the supportive services Saint Vincent offers in its housing communities are care coordination, counseling, peer support networks, self-help groups, leisure activities, help with finances, and referrals to community agencies offering other resources. Recognizing the importance of job training and assistance, the system also offers a unique program in which mentally ill individuals are able to work in a recycling center or office cleaning business, both of which are owned by Saint Vincent.
Squires, Tim; Busuttil, Anthony
This paper considers 168 child fatalities due to house fires in Scotland. It concludes that the fires were largely a direct result of adult activities, including behavior patterns involving alcohol and inadequate child supervision. (DB)
Barnett, Larry D.
An analysis of the results of an administration of Rosen's Achievement Values Scale and Srole's Anomie Scale to adult women residents of a low-income housing project indicated no intrinsic relationship between anomie and achievement values. (JM)
This report, Housing Characteristics 1993, presents statistics about the energy-related characteristics of US households. These data were collected in the 1993 Residential Energy Consumption Survey (RECS) -- the ninth in a series of nationwide energy consumption surveys conducted since 1978 by the Energy Information Administration of the US Department of Energy. Over 7 thousand households were surveyed, representing 97 million households nationwide. A second report, to be released in late 1995, will present statistics on residential energy consumption and expenditures.
School physics rarely stands still for long. Environmental physics is now an option in some post-16 courses in England. The physics of environments, and in particular the built environment, offers a recognizable context in which to see the applications of physics at work. This article considers how a model doll's house might be used to help learners understand energy transfer, thermal equilibrium, energy management, and responsible citizenship.
Tejani, N; Rosenheck, R; Tsai, J; Kasprow, W; McGuire, J F
There is increasing concern that adults with a past history of incarceration are at particular disadvantage in exiting homelessness. Supported housing with case management has emerged as the leading service model for assisting homeless adults; however there has been limited examination of the success of adults with past history of incarceration in obtaining housing within this paradigm. Data were examined on 14,557 veterans who entered a national supported housing program for homeless veterans, the Housing and Urban Development-Veterans Affairs Supportive Housing program (HUD-VASH) during 2008 and 2009, to identify characteristics associated with a history of incarceration and to evaluate whether those with a history of incarceration are less likely to obtain housing and/or more likely to experience delays in the housing attainment process. Veterans who reported no past incarceration were compared with veterans with short incarceration histories (≤ 1 year) and those with long incarceration histories (>1 year). A majority of participants reported history of incarceration; 43 % reported short incarceration histories and 22 % reported long incarceration histories. After adjusting for baseline characteristics and site, history of incarceration did not appear to impede therapeutic alliance, progression through the housing process or obtaining housing. Within a national supported housing program, veterans with a history of incarceration were just as successful at obtaining housing in similar time frames when compared to veterans without any past incarceration. Supported housing programs, like HUD-VASH, appear to be able to overcome impediments faced by formerly incarcerated homeless veterans and therefore should be considered a a good model for housing assistance programs.
Tri-County Opportunities Industrialization Center, Inc., Harrisburg, PA.
This report describes a project to develop instructional materials for the Harrisburg Housing Authority that would enable tenants to understand more clearly the terms of their lease agreements. Project products were designed for tenants, many of whom were students in adult basic education classes, and for housing authority personnel who…
House flies have a life-long association with microbe-rich environments. Larvae directly ingest bacteria in decaying substrates utilizing them for nutritional purposes. Adult house flies ephemerally associate with microbes, ingesting them either by direct feeding or indirectly during grooming. The h...
Newman, Sandra J.; Harkness, Joseph M.
Used data from the Panel Study of Income Dynamics to examine the effects of living in public housing as a child at some point between 1968-1982 on four young adult outcomes. Results indicated that having lived in public housing increased employment, raised earnings, and reduced welfare use but had no effect on household earnings relative to the…
This curriculum was developed to give adult basic education (ABE) teachers starting points for developing their own units around housing-related issues. The texts have been chosen thematically, rather than by skill level. The materials are designed for group work--oral reading and discussion. Readings focus on housing repairs, court procedures,…
Nygren, Carita; Oswald, Frank; Iwarsson, Susanne; Fange, Agneta; Sixsmith, Judith; Schilling, Oliver; Sixsmith, Andrew; Szeman, Zsuzsa; Tomsone, Signe; Wahl, Hans-Werner
Purpose: Our purpose in this study was to explore relationships between aspects of objective and perceived housing in five European samples of very old adults, as well as to investigate whether cross-national comparable patterns exist. Design and Methods: We utilized data from the first wave of the ENABLE-AGE Survey Study. The five national…
Heinrich, Katie M.; Li, Dongmei; Regan, Gail R.; Howard, Hugh H.; Ahluwalia, Jasjit S.; Lee, Rebecca E.
Objectives: To determine relationships between food and beverage signs and health. Methods: In 12 public housing neighborhoods, food and alcohol signs were counted for stores and restaurants. Health and demographic data were from 373 adults. Results: Multilevel modeling showed higher BMI was related to more store and restaurant alcohol signs,…
Greenhall, Arthur M.
The soundest long-term solution for the management of bats that enter buildings and cause a nuisance problem or present a public health hazard is by batproofing the structure. Chemical toxicants do not solve house bat problems and may create worse ones. This manual describes batproofing techniques that will provide effective and acceptable alternatives for dealing with house bat problems and hazards. Recent declines in bat populations and greater appreciation of the ecological importance of bats have identified the need for sound management strategies that will encourage bat conservation while protecting human health and solving nuisance problems. One of the best deterrents against house bats is to improve the energy efficiency of the structure since bats may enter holes through which heat is lost. Heat conservation methods used for batproofing will also be eligible for Federal residential energy tax credits. The manual should be useful to homeowners, public health officials, physicians, veterinarians, conservationists, and others interested or concerned about bat interactions with humans.
Arcury, Thomas A; Jacobs, Ilene J; Ruiz, Virginia
On 11 November 2014, Farmworker Housing Quality and Health: A Transdisciplinary Conference was convened to draw together experts from the variety of disciplines who contribute to research and practice focused on farmworker housing and health in order to delineate current knowledge and propose next steps. The conference addressed three specific aims: (1) to consolidate current knowledge on characteristics and quality of housing provided for farmworkers; (2) to delineate pertinent directions and areas for farmworker housing health and safety research and policy; and (3) to facilitate the development of working groups to support the implementation of research, education, and engineering projects to improve farmworker housing. This article provides an overview of the conference.
Clark, Sherri Lawson; Burton, Linda M.; Flippen, Chenoa A.
Using longitudinal ethnographic data from the Three-City Study, we examined the relationship between sixteen low-income Puerto Rican mothers’ housing dependencies and their intimate partner relations. We traced mothers’ dependent housing arrangements and entrée to marital or cohabiting relationships from their teens through their procurement of independent housing while entering and maintaining intimate partner unions as adults. Findings indicated that various trigger factors led women out of their natal homes and into expedited cohabitation with romantic partners which frequently resulted in unstable unions in which mothers had little power and autonomy. As mothers became eligible for housing subsidies they obtained housing independent from their male partners, potentially increasing the propensity for greater relationship power. Housing independence, however, was not without problems. Spillover effects, such as shadowing partners, threatened housing stability and mothers’ independence. The relevance of these findings for future research is discussed. PMID:21785522
Takekawa, J.Y.; Sacks, B.N.; Woo, I.; Johnson, M.L.; Wylie, G.D.; ,
The San Pablo Song Sparrow (Melospiza melodia samuelis) is one of three morphologically distinct Song Sparrow subspecies in tidal marshes of the San Francisco Bay estuary. These subspecies are rare, because as the human population has grown, diking and development have resulted in loss of 79% of the historic tidal marshes. Hundreds of projects have been proposed in the past decade to restore tidal marshes and benefit endemic populations. To evaluate the value of these restoration projects for Song Sparrows, we developed a population viability analysis (PVA) model to examine persistence of samuelis subspecies in relation to parcel size, connectivity, and catastrophe in San Pablo Bay. A total of 101 wetland parcels were identified from coverages of modern and historic tidal marshes. Parcels were grouped into eight fragments in the historical landscape and 10 in the present landscape. Fragments were defined as a group of parcels separated by >1 km, a distance that precluded regular interchange. Simulations indicated that the historic (circa 1850) samuelis population was three times larger than the modern population. However, only very high levels (>70% mortality) of catastrophe would threaten their persistence. Persistence of populations was sensitive to parcel size at a carrying capacity of <10 pairs, but connectivity of parcels was found to have little importance because habitats were dominated by a few large parcels. Our analysis indicates little risk of extinction of the samuelis subspecies with the current extent of tidal marshes, but the vulnerability of the small-est parcels suggests that restoration should create larger continuous tracts. Thus, PVA models may be useful tools for balancing the costs and benefits of restoring habitats for threatened tidal-marsh populations in wetland restoration planning.
Heimovics, Sarah A; Ferris, Jennifer K; Soma, Kiran K
17β-Estradiol (E2) acts in the brain via genomic and non-genomic mechanisms to influence physiology and behavior. There is seasonal plasticity in the mechanisms by which E2 activates aggression, and non-genomic mechanisms appear to predominate during the non-breeding season. Male song sparrows (Melospiza melodia) display E2-dependent territorial aggression throughout the year. Field studies show that song sparrow aggression during a territorial intrusion is similar in the non-breeding and breeding seasons, but aggression after an intrusion ends differs seasonally. Non-breeding males stop behaving aggressively within minutes whereas breeding males remain aggressive for hours. We hypothesize that this seasonal plasticity in the persistence of aggression relates to seasonal plasticity in E2 signaling. We used a non-invasive route of E2 administration to compare the non-genomic (within 20min) effects of E2 on aggressive behavior in captive non-breeding and breeding season males. E2 rapidly increased barrier contacts (attacks) during an intrusion by 173% in non-breeding season males only. Given that these effects were observed within 20min of E2 administration, they likely occurred via a non-genomic mechanism of action. The present data, taken together with past work, suggest that environmental cues associated with the non-breeding season influence the molecular mechanisms through which E2 influences behavior. In song sparrows, transient expression of aggressive behavior during the non-breeding season is highly adaptive: it minimizes energy expenditure and maximizes the amount of time available for foraging. In all, these data suggest the intriguing possibility that aggression in the non-breeding season may be activated by a non-genomic E2 mechanism due to the fitness benefits associated with rapid and transient expression of aggression.
The physical infrastructure and housing make human interaction possible and provide shelter. How well that infrastructure performs and which groups it serves have important implications for social equity and health. Populations in inadequate housing are more likely to have environmental diseases and injuries. Substantial disparities in housing have remained largely unchanged. Approximately 2.6 million (7.5%) non-Hispanic Blacks and 5.9 million Whites (2.8%) live in substandard housing. Segregation, lack of housing mobility, and homelessness are all associated with adverse health outcomes. Yet the experience with childhood lead poisoning in the United States has shown that housing-related disparities can be reduced. Effective interventions should be implemented to reduce environmental health disparities related to housing. PMID:21551378
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